Thursday, June 2, 2016

Life at Home

My life.

Today, for the first time this school year, my daughter, Justine took the bus to school.  There are 10 days to go and then school is out. (And she's officially a Senior but that's incidental to the story.)

Why is she just now taking the bus to school (and none too happy about it, I might add)?

Her boyfriend has graduated and isn't picking her up for school in the morning. Graduation was last Friday.  The poor boy wants to sleep in for goodness sake!

Oh, then why, now that she has her drivers license, doesn't she drive the family car?  Because...and I know this is hard to believe...I have a life and need the car during the day.  Mean mom, oh yeah, that's me.

But don't fret for the little dear, her boyfriend is picking her up from school.


And the AC is still out.  Technician is scheduled for Monday.  Fingers crossed!
Temperatures are supposed to cool a bit too.  Humidity not so much. I'll be in the basement dyeing yarn if you need me.


So did I mention...

Justine has also started working!  She got a job at a local marina, The Ferry Point Marina, doing maintenance work (pulling weeds, cleaning bathrooms, directing traffic and other misc boat marina stuff).  She seems to really like it and they like her.  She is a hard worker so, of course, they like her!  It's part time and I'm sure after school gets out, she'll pick up more hours.

All my kids have jobs!!!!!

So last weekend when Mike and I went to lunch it took on a special meaning.  Both Joey and Justine were working!!  And we were out playing!!!!!!!  I don't felt like we were getting away with something.  LOL  (I guess we should get used to it, right?)

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Day 6/Ten on Tuesday

Good Morning!

Day 6 of no AC around here.

Yes, the AC was inspected and seemed to work fine when we bought the house (remember, this was in November) but when we turned it on last Thursday, it fired up but is not blowing cold air.  Sucks.  So we're re-living our San Diego days with no AC while I work through the Home Warranty company to try to get a technician out here to inspect the AC unit and hopefully replace it.  Repairing it could be a problem since it's around 29 years old.  Fingers crossed we get a new one soon or old one fixed!!  In the interim, we do have a whole home fan and that helps a bunch!

So Ten on Tuesday's topic:  10 Things I Did This Weekend!

It was a long weekend for us of course, Memorial Day and the official start of Summer in these parts.  That means pools open, all ice cream shops open, people are outside and the route to the beach is packed every weekend.  Ahhhh...summer.  For me it means hats, sunscreen, small knitting projects, canoeing and enjoying our new community beach!  Most of the weekend was beautiful and sunny (read: hot) but the last two days have been cloudy, still pretty warm and humid (read: ugh).'s some of what I did:

1.  Saturday morning was knitting.  Our group meets at a local grocery store cafe and we knit/chat/laugh etc for a few hours.  There was still show and tell from Maryland Sheep and Wool...our group knows how to shop yarn!  I worked on my new Notch Shawl.

2.  After knitting I went to my friend Teri's house for lunch.  We had so much fun catching up.  We knit a little bit and laughed a lot.

3.  Mike and I spent a little time with our new neighbors down the street.  When the estate of the owner of the house we bought had an estate sale, Mrs. Neighbor bought a writing desk and in it were papers and negatives from the owner of our home.  The negatives were of our house being built!  Very cool!!  Anyway, Mr. & Mrs. Neighbor are so nice, it was great talking with them and learning about the neighborhood.

4.  Mike fired up the grill and cooked burgers for us on Sunday night.  Both kids were there...a nice sit down at the dining room table dinner.  They are both working now so evenings where we're all there for dinner are rare.

5.  I dyed a bunch of yarn this weekend.  One skein will be for PicnicKnit's Summer Shawl KAL that starts tomorrow.  Hurry up and dry yarn!  The rest is for a Fiber Fest I'm a vendor at on June 18th.

6.  I pulled weeds in the veg garden.  There weren't many but I got em!

7.  Mike and I decided not to allow our daughter to go with her boyfriend's family and him to Rehoboth Beach over 4th of July weekend.  It will probably break her heart but she'll get over it. Parenting is not a popularity contest.

8.  Mike and I tried to find a replacement remote for the ceiling fan in our bedroom to no avail.  We found one online at but they are out of stock online.  This, however, does not stop the pop up ads I keep getting telling me to buy the remote at Home Depot, online, the one that's out of stock.  So stupid.  Anyway, he's calling the fan company today to see what else we can do.

9.  I got a bunch of cute photos of Veronica this weekend from her trip to Chicago!  So cool!!  It was really great to see her having so much fun.

10.  I got my new knitting magazine called Making in the mail on Saturday.  It's got knitting, a bunch more ideas/patterns for other stuff to make.  It's beautifully photographed, quite inspiring.  I already made something from it!  I made something for a little someone who shares my birthday with me.

Hope your weekend was great.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Family Visit

The in-laws came to see us!  It was a great visit, weather not so much, but we had fun in spite of it!  When the weather was really bad, we stayed home and when it was nicer, we ventured out!  

We took the Oxford-Bellevue Ferry to St. Michaels for a lovely lunch.
20 life jackets were plenty...only us four and two others on the ferry.  I guess not everybody goes adventuring mid-week on a cloudy day.

This plaque was in a gazebo in a park.

We drove to Frederick and visited the Civil War Medical Museum. Here's Mike "measuring up" to soldiers from the Civil War.  The display showed the shortest soldier (3'4") to the tallest (7' something"...I don't remember).  This museum is really neat.  So much more than just medical info, too.  But the medical info is really interesting.  For instance, did you know that 2/3 of the deaths in the war were due to sickness and disease not battle wounds?  If you find yourself in Frederick, you must visit!

And of course, what trip to visit the Pirie's wouldn't include a trip to Annapolis?!
We had to show the folks the new State House exhibits.  Here they are posing with George Washington (and yes, that's his correct height).

 Pinky, my little pink elephant mini-mochiland (hand knit tiny elephant for you non-knitters), sure does get around.  She's checking out George.

 And the kids listening to Alex Haley read them a story about their Roots on the City Dock.
 The clouds parted today and the sun shined!  
We had a great lunch at the Federal House, too.
 Soaking up some rays at City Dock.

 Pinky got in on the action, too.

It was so nice to see our family.  We miss them so much! 

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

iFit adventure

Mike and I just celebrated our 24th wedding anniversary.  We usually don't do much to celebrate.  Go out to dinner, usually.  Well, we did go out to dinner.  And then he told me he got me something.  What?!  I had asked for an iFit Vue for Mother's Day/Birthday this year.  But he found it on sale and had a friend order it with her Amazon Prime account so no now I have one!  What a sweet guy.  Really, I didn't expect this.

What is it? It's one of those wrist bands that keeps track of your fitness efforts.  This will also sync with my treadmill.  There are apps involved and a HUGE learning curve but that's ok.  I'll figure it out.  Here's what it looks like:
You can also set it up to nag you.  You buzzes when you've been not moving for 30 minutes or so and that translates to "get off your lazy butt and walk around a bit, girl!" Might be a good thing.  My hip (oh, God, that makes me sound old) has been sore from sitting too much.  Now, before you start clicking your collective tongues...I sit while I knit.  So I'm doing SOMETHING!  I guess I just need to work on more movement in all that knitting.  I'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Ten on Tuesday

Ten on Tuesday:  10 movies I have to stop and watch while I'm channel surfing.

Ok...I'm gonna do this...but I'm making it for Mike.  Truthfully, I'm more likely to stop on a TV show than a movie (unless it's a good musical...but they rarely show up).  He has certain movies he ALWAYS stops on while surfing.

1.  National Treasure
2.  National Treasure 2 (I can't remember the exact name.)
3.  First Blood
4.  Jurassic Park
5.  Die Hard
6.  Ground Hog Day
7.  Singing in the Rain
8.  Raiders of the Lost Ark
9.  Ghostbusters
10.  Legally Blonde (He loves Reese Witherspoon...who doesn't?)

And truth be told, I'd watch them all too.  Well, except First Blood.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Ten on Tuesday

Ten on Tuesday:  10 Albums I love

1.  The Great Unknown by Rob Thomas
2.  Gold Motel by Gold Motel
3.  Summer House by Gold Motel
4.  Songs About Jane by Maroon 5
5.  Supernatural by Santana
6.  X by Ed Sheeran
7.  Greatest Hits by The Bee Gees
8.  Gordon by Barenaked Ladies
9.  Medusa by Annie Lennox
10.  Night Visions by Imagine Dragons

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Ten On Tuesday

Ten On Tuesday:  10 Things You Do to Calm Down.

1.  Knit.  Knitting is repetitive.  You need to calm down to retain consistent gauge throughout a project.  I don't think I could get through the day without knitting.  Not that I need all that calming down but the repetitive movement and pretty yarn is what my soul needs everyday.

2.  Deep breathing.  5 in, 5 out. It works to slow the heart rate and focus attention.

3.  Picking up the clutter.  I work on putting away all the paper work and stuff that accumulates around the house.  Then the cleaner surfaces help me stay calm.

4.  I work on a Zentangle drawing. It's very repetitive and relaxing.

5.  Taking a walk...outside or on the treadmill.  Exercise will always help (I'm finding out).

6.  Looking at my phone...reading all the FB stuff and photos on IG help to distract me and calms me down.  Some of the pictures and stories are really lovely.  

7.  In reference to #6...I find if I read some comments that are pretty outrageous, troll quality, then I feel calmer.  Weird, huh?  If I witness people more upset than me, it calms me down.  I think it makes me push the emotion to the side and look at something more logically instead (cuz I don't want to be like them!).

8.  A nice cup of coffee or hot cocoa will help calm me down.

9.  Organization calms me down.  Looking at something organized or actually organizing something really helps.  Something simple like organizing my knitting bag or my knitting "nest" in the house works wonders.

10.  Looking at water.  I love to look at water, especially when I'm in need of calming down.  When we lived in Florida we had a pool, and even looking at a swimming pool had a calming effect on me.

Friday, April 1, 2016


Happy April Fool's Day.  Ok, that sounds weird.  Good luck surviving today...don't believe anything you hear on the radio, TV or Internet.  That's my advice.  A couple years ago Justine pranked me on 4/1.  She taped up this picture of Nicolas Cage's face:
ALL OVER THE PLACE!  And I mean all over. There were the biggest one was 1" x 1". They were on lamps, inside the fridge, inside kitchen cabinets, and a bunch of other places. This was two years ago.  We were still pulling off little taped faces when we moved this past Fall.  I can see one taped to this very monitor while I type this...I can't believe it's lasted this long.  I even found one in the little box that holds my stitch markers for knitting (pretty sure it's still there, too)! 

So pretty good one, Justine.  I'm still enjoying it today.  haha

Anyway, hope you have a great day.  That's NO April Fool's!

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Old and New

Cotton multi-colorway.
 Blue Raspberry...and old favorite.
 Arizona of my most popular colorways.

Mineral...think crystals, new multi-colorway.  Purples and peachy-pinks.

 Vampire Toes...oldie but a goodie.  
Rocky Coast...always popular and never lasts too long in the shop.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Ten for Tuesday

Ten on Tuesday

10 things I like to do outside:

1.  I love to sit outside and watch the neighborhood.  I listen and watch...nothing much happens, but the birds sound nice and neighbors who walk by wave hello.

2.  I love to walk outside.  I usually don't plug-in while walking.  I like to hear the sounds of the world while out in it.  I like the sunshine (although I always wear a hat these days).

3.  Gracie and I enjoy our daily walk around lunch time.  When the weather warms up (if it ever does), we may change it to morning.  Either way, it's fun to watch her.  She's a dog so lots of sniffing and marking, of course.  She'll notice a squirrel every now and again, not as much as she used to though...she's getting older.  She's so much better at greeting other dogs in this neighborhood than our old one.  We still stay away from the big dogs though...she's not too fond of them.

4.  I love riding my bike.  As soon as the weather warms, I'm going to make riding a routine.  There are plenty of neighborhoods to explore and I think, a short cut to the Baltimore-Annapolis Rail to Trail, too.  A nice way to enjoy the sunshine and get a work out too.

5.  I have working in the garden to look forward to this year.  Mike built three garden boxes this past weekend and I've ordered some stuff from Burpee.  We'll get some starter veggie plants from the local nursery (in a few weeks) and the garden should be on it's way.  Another frost still coming, so we'll be planting closer to Mother's Day, I think.  The "dirt" is coming this weekend so I'll be outside filling the boxes.  We also have work out front we're doing too.  Pics will be posted, don't worry.

6.  I love walking down the street to our neighborhood beach, sitting on the bench and watching the water.  I can't wait to do that this summer, wine spritzer in hand, husband by my side.

7.  One the coldest days of winter, Mike and I love to go to historic Annapolis, get a hot drink from Starbucks and walk the old neighborhoods.  I have plenty of woolies to keep us warm so we really don't get too cold (plus we're walking not strolling).  We have to streets to ourselves because of the cold so it's kinda nice.

8.  I love to enjoy a glass of wine sitting in the yard with Mike...enjoying the last of the sun before it goes down.

9.  Although I rarely do it, sitting and knitting outside is something I enjoy, too.  Not sure why it doesn't happen more often.  I should remedy this.

10.  I love to hike too.  A nice trail in the woods or mountains is my kinda hike.

Friday, March 18, 2016


I hope everyone had a good St. Patrick's Day! No green beer around here...but I did make Shepard's Pie for dinner.  Is that Irish?  Irish enough.  I finally got Justine to model some of my finished shawls (I still have three more to be blocked).  Here they are:

This is Incendiary by Picnicknits.  I knit it with my very own yarn...Embers colorway.  If you've bought some of my variegated yarn...this pattern is a perfect choice for it!  It knits up quick, the charts are clear and easy to follow.  I really enjoyed this pattern.  Blocks to a nice size, too.  If you want THIS colorway I will have it in the shop very soon.  I dyed two skeins and when I get back from my girls beach weekend, they're going in the shop!

This is Edison by Lynn Di Cristina.  It's all garter.  Mine is knit with Bamboo Pop which is 50% cotton, 50% nice drape!  I had to wait a couple months for the black to get ordered (Thank you All About Yarn in Columbia!).  Waiting for yarn is not something I do well.  Good thing I have plenty more yarn to help me cope.

This is Architexture by Jennifer Weissman.  I saw the kit on sale at Craftsy on Facebook and bought it, totally on impulse.  It was only $25....including shipping!!  Then I recruited two friends to join me in a KAL.  (Remember non-knitters, that's a Knit A-Long.)  I did the largest size and man, is it long!  Over 90 inches long! Will make a good scarf for next winter.  Or this weekend since we might get some snow.  Might. 

Anyway, Justine was nice to model for me...the wind was blowing and she was cold.  I kept's a shawl...and here's a shawl...

She's standing under the Tulip Tree.  I promised you pictures...

The whole tree is covered in pink tulips!  A bunch more have yet to even open....I hope the cold coming doesn't kill them off.  

Have a great weekend everyone!

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Trees and Ten on Tuesday

Hi there blog readers!!  Update on the trees:  4 down! Mike hauled most of the branches away (the rest will be cut smaller and put out with the green trash), trunks in the wood pile and now just the stumps to deal with.  Car repairs next for Mike (Joey's car) and then back to the yard.  We have so many plans for the front and back yards...time to make a list.  I like lists.

Our week is mostly rainy but that's fine, helps get Spring going full bloom.  Oh, speaking of which, a tree in our front yard (not a christmas tree this time) is starting to bloom!  It has beautiful pink flowers that look like tulips all over it!!  I think it might be a Tulip Tree.  It's not in full bloom yet.  Wednesday this week is supposed to be sunny so I'm planning on getting photos of it so you can all see.  You know, moving in in the month of November, we didn't know what was gonna happen, plant growth wise, ya know.  Some bulbs have popped up around the house, too.  Kinda fun to see what will happen next.

Ok!  Ten on Tuesday!  I haven't done this in a couple weeks because the topic isn't always all that interesting to me (or I have a hard time finding 10).  This week it is:  My 10 Favorite Comfort Foods.  No problem.

1.  Pizza.
2.  Meatloaf with mashed potatoes and gravy
3.  Grilled tuna (not tuna on the grill, grilled cheese with tuna)
4.  Chocolate pie with whipped cream
5.  Pot roast
6.  5-Guys little bacon cheeseburger
7.  Eggs, bacon and hash browns
8.  Mom's turkey soup
9.  My fab chicken soup
10.  Egg McMuffin

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Needle Work (ha!)

Good Morning everyone!  Our weather is warming up this week but should be cooler next week. It might be too early to start getting the sunscreen out but I better break out the sun hat soon.  Maybe shop for a new one for this year.  I plan on doing a lot of gardening.  Mike has been working in the back yard lately, removing those darn christmas trees peppered throughout our yard. 
 If he could have squealed with joy in his steel toed boots and his protective (prescription) eye wear, chain saw in hand...he would have.
 Very methodical...he is a manufacturing engineer after all, he trimmed the lower branches to expose the trunk.

 This pile got MUCH bigger after two trees (one big, one can see it behind the fallen tree in the last photo).
In my head, I'm like, "Holy crap...don't hit the lawn chairs!!!!"  It didn't.

So this tree and the one behind it got chopped and shaved.  We saved the trunk pieces for fire wood and he's gonna haul the branches to the dump.  There are two more HUGE trees, just like these, that are next.  He's buying a bigger chainsaw (insert manly grunts) to tackle them.  He borrowed a smaller chainsaw from a friend and is he's afraid he'll ruin it on the monster trees.  We are planning on replacing the christmas trees with "real" trees that have leaves NOT needles and turn pretty colors in the Fall.  Yes, I do realize that means raking leaves.  Thank you very much.  We're keeping three of the christmas trees...two at the back of the south 40 and one in the front yard.

We plan on re-seeding the grass and he's gonna build garden boxes for us to have a veg garden.  The amount of plants this house needs is so large, not sure we can do it all this year but we're gonna try. We have so many fun ideas!

BUT most of this work is on hold now that Joey got an estimate on some work his car needs for inspection passage before he can register...and it's way too high for him to afford.  Like $3000+!  So he and Mike are gonna do the work (the work Mike said was too hard to do before the estimate).  Oh well, you do what you gotta do.  It's nice to see them working together.

Besides, according to garden authorities, it's really too early to start planting new stuff.  Closer to Mother's Day is the time to start. 

On the knitting front:
I'm going to frog the sweater I've been working on called Rolling Rock.  It's just too darn BIG!  Really, when I lay it flat and measure across (not blocked, of course and lace on the back, which will stretch a lot) it's 22".  That's 44" around...UNBLOCKED!  And the yarn is superwash so add a bit more of growth in blocking for that, too.  It's gonna go back to the stash and become another sweater.  For now, I'm gonna put sweater knitting on hold and knit a few smaller projects (ok, all other projects besides sweaters I guess).  

I got my last shipment from Yarnbox and guess what?!
IT CAME IN A BOX!!  Ok, a totally squished and broken box (thanks USPS) but a box nonetheless.  The side says: Caution!! Yarn Inside. May cause extreme happiness.  (And yes, yes it does.)
 The yarn is really pretty and perfect for the pattern that came with I'm gonna cast them on!  The pattern is called Winter Tornado.

I also finished PicnicKnits newest sideways shawlette called Incendiary in my Embers colorway.  Oh man, is it beautiful!!  My model is free (time-wise, not money-wise...haha) on Thursday so I plan on getting pics and posting soon.

Our weather today and tomorrow should be in the upper 70s...what?!  
  Hope the rest of your week is sunny, too.

Monday, February 29, 2016

One More Day

Happy Leap Day everyone!
For me, it will be one more day of the same old, same old.
What about you?

Adventure in Easton

I went to a bead show weekend before last with a friend.  First time for me...and a bit overwhelming.  But, true to form, I had a list of what I was looking for and pretty much stuck to it.  I thought I'd make some fun stitch markers for my customers, me and my friends.  A little frustrating to work that darn wrap at first but it got easier with time.

Yesterday Mike and I went on a little adventure.  We drove over the Bay Bridge to Easton.  We usually drive over the bridge, past Easton and on to St. Michael's to Frivolous Fibers yarn shop.  The shop has moved to Easton so we went to check it out.  My friend, Dolly was just there and after her report, I had to see it for myself.  And Mike and I have never walked around or seen much of Easton, so why not!

The yarn shop was nice.  Very, very small and at the back of another shop with local artist's art (very cool!).  The shop owner was super friendly (as usual), so it was nice to see her and look around.  I was wearing my Starshower Cowl and she Oooo'd and Ahhh'd so nicely.  I love it when they notice.  I got a skein of Zen Yarn...merino, silk and cashmere.  Really soft.  

And we explored a bit and had lunch.
The court house, right across from the pub where we had lunch.  It was closed, of course, but the gate was open so we wondered in.  It had huge amazing trees and a lovely garden.

The view from the court house, across the street.  The historic area is very cute...lots of old buildings and artsy shops.  

 We had a nice lunch at the Washington Street Pub.  Good beer, good crab cakes, awesome service and so cute inside!!

Mike with his SDSU gear on awaiting his beer.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Icy Throw Back

Throw Back Thursday to just one year ago.  I can't believe how mild this winter has been compared to the cold of last winter.  This day was March 1, 2015.  Our little world was about 1/2 an inch of ice.  It was so beautiful and dangerous.  I was so fascinated by the plants covered in ice.  Someday maybe we'll see that again.

Not this winter.

Fingers crossed for at lease one more snowfall.  


Sunday, February 14, 2016

Happy Valentine's Day

Hope you have a day filled with love and chocolate.

And Happy Anniversary to my BFF and her hubby in California! 
Have a great day you two!

And Happy Birthday to my brother, Kurt.  He won't see this but there it is.