Sunday, October 15, 2017

Looking for Little B........

Has anyone seen Little Buddy?  All I see is this little man at my house.  He seems familiar don't you think?  I keep looking for Little Buddy everywhere yet this is the only little guy I see.  We keep calling this guest Mr. Mustache.  We aren't sure who this guy is but it seems to me his disguise is not working quite right.  I mean if you are going to disguise yourself you might want to get that mustache on correctly.

Hope Mr. Mustache has made you smile, and hope you all have a peaceful Sunday.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Here we go again......

Another South Bay Shawlette has made its way off my size I hook.  I know you are all getting sick of my obsessive shawl making but I can't stop.  With all the stress out there in the world I need a simple pattern to make with beautiful yarn moving through my fingers.  I had plans for this one.  I think it might go with me to the wedding we are attending in November.  I had visions of it going with this wine colored dress, giving the dress some pizzazz. I bought this yarn 50% off when a local yarn store was going out of business.  Malabrigo Silky Merino in the colorway 866 Arco Iris.  I am in love with this yarn, it is gorgeous to look at and gorgeous to hold in your hands.  I used all but this wee little bit of four skeins, so about 600 yards.  The funny thing is they were all the same dye lot but the third skein had so much green in it.  I like the way it looks within the shawl but might not like this in a sweater.  It looks like I had a grand plan for this green stripe, I admit I did not.

How do you like it with the dress?  Dresses look so horrible on hangers don't they?  So flat and not full of life.  The yarn has a bit more depth to it then these photos are portraying.  

This was also another yarn option for this dress.  This yarn was gifted to me and I have two beautiful skeins, about 560 yards in all.  I have already started another shawl, really I am obsessed.  I have not decided on the winner until this one has been completed.  I will keep one shawl and give the other as a gift.  See it is a win-win.

My two small rose bushes took a huge hit during Hurricane Irma.  They lost every leaf and flower.  I cut them way back and crossed my fingers they would grow back.  These roses greeted me today.  How fun to have them blooming again.

As we experience yet another 92 degree day I have been looking for signs of Fall.  This is it, the berries on my holly tree are starting to turn.  Although I am frustrated about the heat and humidity I do not have a thing to complain about.  My work is done for the week, we are all healthy and relatively happy, and I am safely writing to you from my home that has not been ravaged by hurricanes, floods, earthquakes or fires.  I feel for all of you who have been in the path of these horrendous natural events.  For those of you in Northern California, I am sending you  prayers.  I feel a bit like this world of ours has had enough of all that is going on.  Like it is sending us a message, get it together people, be there for each other and do not tear each other apart.  Care about each other and the state of the world.  No more Hate!

I wish you all peace.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Catching up in October.............

October, how did you get here so fast?  It is already the 8th and I feel so far behind.  This is my favorite month of the year because it finally starts to cool off a bit.  Not that it has yet but I am expecting it to by mid month.  I am so jealous of all of you experiencing Autumn, cool nights, beautiful days, crisp air, changing leaves and that Autumn smell, I miss it so much.   

This weekend I had a list of things to do a mile long.  I started on Friday, my typical day off and I feel like I have accomplished most of it.  If I don't stay on top of things at this point in the year I will fall down a dismal hole of being behind and never catch up.  I have decorated for Halloween, finished Little Buddy's costume, bought a baby gift, bought new Crocs for Little Buddy to wear with his braces (he wears them out so fast!).  I have taken my car in to get fixed only to find out they need a part and I can't get it done until next weekend.  Have you ever heard of not being able to get your key out of the ignition?  Well neither had I until it has happened to me every time I try to turn off my car.  Since I drive for work that is 7-10 times a day.   I bought Little Buddy a shirt and pair of pants for an upcoming wedding.  We finished all of our homework for next week because I do not have time to do it during the week.  I met my dear friend Holly for a great breakfast and chat on Friday, it was a special treat with a very special friend.  I pruned two small palm trees and ripped out dead plants.  I finished paper work and have cleaned up half my house, the other half is for today.  Oh, and I also crocheted.  Not the above shawl but a new one.  The crazy thing is I still have more to accomplish today.  Yikes, aren't you supposed to rest on the weekend?

The shawl above was started just after Max passed.  I just had to start something new.  I grabbed this beautiful yarn from my stash, it was gifted to me, Madeline Tosh Vintage in the color Earl Grey.  It seems appropriate for cool Autumn mornings.   This is the Yes Yes Shawl by Bernat design team.  I have had this shawl in my Ravelry library for years.  It was easy to make, has a great chart, and just flew off my size I hook.  This was made with just over two skeins of yarn, about 410 yards and is not meant for me.  It is soft and beautiful,  hopefully it will make a great gift.

Speaking of gifts it is quickly approaching the dreaded Christmas and you might be looking for a few fun gifts for family and friends.  Do you remember the wonderful wedding Little Buddy was in this past February?  The lovely bride Taylor, has opened up a new jewelry making business as she makes her way through nursing school.  This is a small sample of her wonderful bracelets.  She has all sorts of choices and I'd love you to take a look.  She is offering free shipping on all items for the near future.  You can visit her here on Facebook.  She has an etsy shop called D and G Design Shop but for some reason I can't link to it.  She makes all sorts of special orders.  If you need her email let me know.  IF you visit her, let her know I sent you.

Here is a slight preview of Little Buddy's Halloween costume.  Yes I know that R on the left side is crooked, you should see the rest of the costume!  I am not known for my sewing skills that is for sure.   Let me just say sewing felt that stretches is a challenge.  If he ends up being happy with it that is all that matters.

Speaking of Little Buddy, yesterday he found a mustache in his dress up box.  He wanted to turn it up because he wanted a smiling mustache.  But don't let his smile fool you, he has been a pistol lately!  Very bossy and talking back, back to forgetting to use the potty, and constantly telling us all what to do.  Hmmmm....................... wonder where he gets his bossy attitude from?

Hope you all have a great week and are loving the weather wherever you are.  Stay safe and find a bit of peace in your week.  Even a little bit helps in these uncertain times. 

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Thanks, thoughts and prayers and some little kid humor......

First of all I want to thank you all so much for your love and kind words over the passing of my dear Max.  I took this photo of him through the sliding glass doors as he watched me finishing up the clean up from Hurricane Irma.  I miss him very much and still listen for him.  He was needing a bit of special attention these past few months so I always seemed to be aware of where he was and if he might need help.  He was a beautiful boy and a beautiful part of our family.

So much has happened this year in terms of tragedies.  So much stress and worry in politics and what will happen in so many aspects of our lives.  Tragedy after tragedy, some natural, some man made and many politically made.  Fires, earthquakes, hurricanes and of course this completely senseless shooting in Las Vegas.  It all just seems to be so overwhelming.  I really have no words to say how sorry I am for those that have lost loved ones, lost their homes and livelihood, lost their possessions and way of life, lost the belief that their country was there for them.  We can pray and send our love and positive thoughts, but isn't it better to take action?  Isn't it better to write a check, donate blood, and vote in people who will make sensible decisions about gun control and disaster relief?  Isn't it better to vote in people who will not let 9 million children in need possibly lapse in their medical coverage?  Isn't it better to take the time to really think about the world we want to leave our children?  One in which it is okay to possess assault weapons with the capacity to kill 59 people and hurt over 500 at one time, a world that is getting warmer and warmer every year that helps make natural disasters like hurricanes stronger?   I don't want this for Little Buddy or my other children.  I want a world that people care about each other starting at the top of our government and moving all the way down to every citizen.  A world where the National Rifle Association does not buy off politicians and where people in politics actually care about what is right and good for all of us.  Where our country and its president works with others for the greater good of the world, not like a 5th grade school boy bullying and calling names and tweeting ridiculous things about a hard working mayor of San Juan who is fighting for the lives of the people who voted her into office to take care of them.  I am so sad by the state of affairs we find ourselves in as a country.  I am saddened by the response of those who do not want to be called out on their voting record.  If it is not time to talk about gun control after the biggest mass shooting in our country when is it the right time?  When we forget about those who have lost their lives and those injured?  When the next tragedy takes over and Las Vegas is not the prime story in the evening news?  I am just sick over all of this.  Just sick.  I know most of you are, too.  Think about who you are voting for, don't listen to fake news including FOX news which is known for spreading false information.   And don't listen to a president that thinks every piece of information out there that does not reflect on him in a positive light is fake.  Rely on sources that are non partisan like Politico and yes, CNN.  Think about the world you want your grandchildren to live in and vote for a better world than the world we have  now.

Okay I am going to try to lighten the load a bit with a few fun stories just to take the weight of life off of our already burdened shoulders.

A few months ago a five year old boy I work with asked me to marry him.  Of course I said yes after explaining that I am really old, my number is 53 and his is 5, he might decide he would like to marry a four or five year old instead of me.  He told me not to worry that he could get old, too.  Well after school started he told me very solemnly that we could not get married because he was going to marry a girl in his preschool with red hair and a ponytail.  Really, who could compete with that?  I asked him what her name was and he did not know but according to him she was, "Really cute!"

A week ago Little Buddy got his pj's off all by himself to my amazement when I found him completely naked sitting in his rocking chair.  I asked him if he wanted to get dressed and he told me no that he was fine.  He then proceeded to walk around the house with his crutches and only his crocs on.  Mr. 23 came down and asked me what was up with Little Buddy.  I explained that a 3 year old can get themselves undressed and walk around naked, this is pretty normal.  Even though Little Buddy is six this is a new skill he has and he still has to go through this developmental stage.  The joke ended up being on me as Little Buddy went into the bathroom and made a mess on the floor.  Even naked he had a hard time timing his potty needs.

And last but not least we met Mr 23's new girlfriend on Sunday.  At the beginning of dinner Little Buddy said "Excuse me, (Mr. 23) do you have a winker dinker?"  Mr 23 replied that indeed he did.  Then Little Buddy stated most emphatically that, "(Mr 23) has a winker dinker, Daddy has a winker dinker and I have a winker dinker because we are all boys!"  After we got that all cleared up we ate a delicious meal.  Nothing like a little comic relief when meeting a new girlfriend.

Stay safe my friends.  I hope to catch up with you all this weekend after another really crazy week at work.  My thoughts are with all of you as we travel through these uncertain times.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

My darling Max......

Yesterday we had to say goodbye to our beloved boy Max.  He had a tougher than normal week last week but with some medication he seemed to perk up.  Yesterday morning he could not stand at all, actually compared to Friday it was a very sudden change.   We called the vet right away and they got him in.  We were not going to mess around with this precious boy.  He deserves to depart with respect and dignity after being such a loyal part of our family.  Max we will forever miss you.  Thank you for loving us far more than we could ever love you. 

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Getting back to normal......

Everything is back in place after Hurricane Irma.  I am so thankful it is all done.  After the whole yard and outside furniture clean up I still had a few things to do, replacing Dinah was one of them.  You can read about this precious doll here.   Dinah was carefully wrapped in a towel and placed in my closet for the duration of the storm.  She rarely is out of her glass case, so before I put her back I took a few close up photos of her.  My older boys think she is the creepiest doll ever.  I did too when I was young.  The boys don't understand the history behind her even though I have told them a million times.  Is it boys, or maybe all kids don't seem to appreciate the precious mementos of our ancestors?  They are so digitally engaged, have they lost the importance of our past?   Dinah is so delicate, and frankly she has aged way better than I have.  Look there is barely a wrinkle on her face, not bad for being over 100 years old.  If you have to take one precious thing with you what would you take?  Well that is besides your family, lovely pets and important papers.  My answer is always Dinah.

It is amazing how funny I feel when things are not in place in my home.  When we were getting ready for the storm Little Buddy said, "Mom, everything is out of order!"  Yup, it sure was, but now I can walk around and see everything back in place, hooray!  So many people in Houston, Mexico, Florida and the Pacific Northwest are still suffering.  And yet another senseless bomb in London, you have to wonder when all this chaos will end.  All we can do is help when and where we can, send positive energy, love and money if possible to those in need.  And of course put things back in order.  A new week at work and school starting again tomorrow will help.

You would have thought with all the time off work I have had that this Envision Cardigan would be complete but it is not.  Every time I went to work on it before, during or after the storm I just could not stay focused.  There was too much to do with everyone here at my house.  And when I got everything all sorted out I had loads of paperwork to catch up on.  So yesterday I made myself sit down with it for a few hours and start the ribbing.  I am off a stitch so it does not look like actual ribbing but I kind of like it so it will stay this way.  My own design flaw I guess.   Even though I swear I hear my yarn calling me from my stash, wanting me to come and play, I am refusing to listen.  I need to complete this sweater before I can start anything else.  I think this beautiful yarn deserves a finish after trying four times to make something with it before.

My darling Max is exhausted.  The storm really took a lot out of him.  He woke the morning of the storm coughing and vomiting.  He kept at it periodically through out the morning until I finally gave him a pain pill and he settled down.  The next day it was the same but to a slightly less degree in intensity.  He does not like children, but did well with the little ones at the house.  Still he must have been exhausted.  During the storm we would take him out when it seemed like there was a slight lull.  He would always look around very concerned, almost frozen for a bit until he would finally turn and come into the house.  This morning he fell and did not eat his breakfast until well after 11:00.  I am keeping my eye on him and as always I tell him I love him and to tell me when he is ready to go, I will honor him with the respect and dignity he so deserves. 

Okay, have a wonderful week my friends.  Stay safe wherever you are.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Surviving Irma...........

Hi everyone, I have missed you.  We have been very busy with an old crotchety storm named Irma who frankly could not make up her mind where she wanted to go.  We started preparations by removing everything from our back pool area on Saturday.  If you live where there are hurricane's it is safest to toss your furniture in the pool.  Well the furniture that can sink that is.  Everything else has to be hauled inside or into your garage.  All the plants, chairs, tables, swings, plastic play houses, I mean everything has to go somewhere secure.

We weathered the storm miraculously well.  I am so shocked because Irma must have some anger issues, she was big, bold and frankly devastating to so many.  The morning of the storm it looked like she was coming directly at us.  Entering near St. Petersburg, jumping over Tampa Bay and heading to our house a few miles inland.  I can't tell you how stressed we were.  On top of the stress from a week of trying to find water and supplies.  I assume everyone shopped really early while I was at work after seeing what happened with Hurricane Harvey.  One week before Irma touched the United States there was no water or batteries anywhere.  The stress of every update made all of us go a bit mad.  Where would she go?  Then to see the major evacuations all over the state, it was crazy.  Anyway back to the morning of, I made a tough decision and sent my son, Mr. 20 back to Orlando.  We were going to get hit head on and frankly I wanted one of us to be okay.  It sounds melodramatic at this point but it is the truth.  He has an apartment there, he could start school if needed if we were without a house.  It was the toughest thing I have had to do, say good-by to him and know he would feel guilty if something did happen to us.  Gosh, I could cry right now thinking of it all.  I know you are screaming why didn't you go somewhere?  Well there was no real safe place to go.  We had yet to be told to evacuate, we are zone C, A and B were the priority.  Plus we had Little Buddy's medical foster mom, her girls and a baby staying here from Saturday afternoon until this afternoon.  They live in low St. Petersburg and needed a safe place to be.  The girls have issues that would not have done well in a shelter.  Gosh it was a mess.  Suddenly we are responsible for a whole other family.  Anyway we all talked and decided we have a very sturdy house, we have been thorough this before, it was time to take more action.  We have safe places to go downstairs and have an up stairs in case of significant flooding.  So I emptied out my closet and the little cubby under the stairs I use for storage.  It is only accessible from my closet.  The girls slept there, Little Buddy and the baby slept in my closet.  We could all hop in there if needed.  The kids thought it was the best, the adults were stressed to the max!

We watched the weather reports all afternoon and evening long.  Suddenly Irma wanted to head up the middle of the state after entering near Naples.  Those poor people and those on the east coast 100 miles away from her.  They have been devastated with destruction and flooding.  I felt better knowing we were on the west side of her, and she kept shifting east.  So now I have sent my son to an area that is going to be worse than us, I know not my best moment of motherhood.  We stayed up late into the night and watched the news and felt the winds gust up over 80 miles per hour.  That is doable in our house, not for everyone but certainly for us.  At about 2 AM it got very quiet, I think we were kind of near the center of the storm at that point although the eye did not go directly over us.  By 3 AM it was game on again, and continued all night long.  

In the morning the baby woke at 5:30 and I got him up for a bottle so he would not wake the others.  He soon fell back to sleep and I put on my raincoat and took a pre-dawn walk around my house and the one next door.  It was raining and windy but the worst was over.  We had very big branches down all over, but the miracle is not one of them fell on the house or our screen enclosure.  We have had electricity the entire time, even though most of my county is still without power.  We are all safe.  Mr. 20  had high winds, tornadoes and ended up losing power and just got it back this afternoon. The little's act like they have been on a grand adventure.  Little Buddy is completely exhausted from playing non stop and not taking a nap for three days.  Last night he actually told us he was going to bed!

My friends just left late this afternoon.  They are still without power but do have a generator.  It took us two full days to chop up branches, load debris into garbage bags, and replace all the things we had stored away.  We are so lucky, so crazy lucky I can't even tell you in words how grateful I am.  There are so many suffering.  They have lost so much.  Somehow we lucked out with this one.

I want to thank you all so much for your kinds words, your emails and your concern.  I can't ell you how much it means to me that you would take the time to email me with your concern about our well being.  I thank you for your comments on my blog, for contacting my sister when I was not able to get on this space and write that we were fine.  I also want to thank you for your prayers and kind thoughts.  Knowing you were thinking of us when you were watching the weather just warms my heart.  You are all the best.

And just so you know the last photo is Frankie the tortoise.  He had to come, too.  He is just 2 months old and will live 80-100 years.  He is so cute, and loves hibiscus leaves.  He was fun to have here.

Okay, now back to regular life.  Thank God!