Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year....YAWN

Well, its New Years Rocking Chair Eve and we're going to party like it's 1899! Woo Hoo! The old folks are hot tonight. Why Golly! We might even stay up last 10:00 p.m.! Let's break out the sparkling cider and let the bubbles go to our head. Maybe dance on the lawn in our flannel nightgown/nightshirt and nightcaps. Besides, we need clear heads for all the FOOTBALL tomorrow. We will eat the tradditional New Years food of our ancestors: for my family - clam dip; for Bob's - kiebasa and saurkraut. Thank God neither one of us smokes because if someone lights a match in our house tomorrow night the whole place is gonna blow!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Finished the Denim Oddball Scarf

YAY! I finished my "Denim Oddball Scarf". I really like the yarn (Bernat's Denim Styl;e) It is very comfy. Can't wait to wear it. I need to go throught all the UFOs that are laying around and finish them up and start coming up with ideas for Christmas 2008. Need to start now if I want to get everything done!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Friday Ramblings

Rain has returned. This is the kind of weather that makes you want to curl up by a fire with a good book or some knitting. If you only had one word to describe weather in the Valley this time of year it would be “grey”. If its not the clouds, it’s the fog.

I have hooked up with a group called “Macuwita Sni”, which is Lakota for “I am not cold”. We are providing warm hand knit items for children on the Lakota reservations in South Dakota. I have a ‘School Spirit Scarf” cast on in purple and gold (one of the high school’s colors). I am also getting ready to cast on a hat with the left-over yarn from Mr. McClymond’s warm wooly hat. I should have enough to make a child’s beanie. Its hard to imagine how cold it gets in the winter in South Dakota. I shiver when it drops below 40!

I am looking forward to a quiet weekend. Bob & I have been invited to family dinner at the McClymond’s homestead. Mary and her family are out from Tennessee and Sue drove up from Pasadena. It will be nice to sit and visit with them. Its so strange not having Peggy around anymore. We try to get up to see Mr. McClymonds a couple of times a week and bring him dinner. He makes great oatmeal, but that is about the extent of his cooking abilities. The McClymonds kids have adopted me as a little sister. Its fun to do the family dinner thing at the holidays again. I bought all 4 of the kids “Merry Christmas from Heaven” ornaments personalized with Peggy’s name. Mary opened hers on Christmas Eve and started bawling and hugging me. She didn’t see the personalization until I pointed it out to her and that started another flood of tears. She and I got to know each other over the summer while she was here caring for Peggy. She has become like a sister to me.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

I've created a monster!

Christmas is over. It was very nice and quiet for us. We spent the day calling family members, napping and watching videos. Mr. & Mrs. Claus were pretty worn out from Christmas Eve deliveries.

I think the funniest part was talking to my sister-in-law Kelli. Her daughter Kayla has expressed an interest in learning how to knit so we bought her a beginning knitting kit and a copy of “Stitch and Bitch” so she can learn some of the basics. Kayla is so excited because she can now say “Bitch” and tell everyone she is referring to the book.

I love my new knitting basket from Bob and the knitting bag that my Mother-In-Law made for me. I was so excited about the handmade bag that it wasn’t until she called and asked if I looked in the pocket that I realized there was a gift card for Joann’s.

One of the biggest surprises was getting a gift card to Babetta’s from Josh, Bob’s lead at work. I made him a pair of fingerless gloves last month and he just loves them. He tries to be a real hard ass and would be mad if I said this to him, but he is such a nice guy. It has been amazing watching him grown up in the time he has worked with Bob.

Sitting on the couch with Bob, I was just feeling so blessed. Its not the gifts that we give or get each other, it’s the love of family and friends that is the best gift at the holidays.

Monday, December 24, 2007

New word of the day!

Chuck, our “adopted son” has given us a new word for the day: “Flumtuous”.

While at Christmas Promise tonight, they were selling sweatshirts with the Christmas Promise logo. Bob wanted one and I decided that Chuck needed one also. I thought about getting one for myself, but they did not have my size. When I came back to the truck, I gave them each their sweatshirt.

“Why didn’t you get one for yourself?” Bob asked.
“They did have one that would fit my fat ass”, I replied.
“You’re not fat!” Chuck protested. “You’re flumtuous!”

What the Hell does that mean? Sounds like a disease! I can only hope he was trying to say “voluptuous”.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

On His Way...

Bob is on his way to Ohio to visit the boys. I dropped him off this morning at 5:00 a.m. and I miss him already. One week is going to seem like one month. I know he will have a great time with the boys. His sisters are so excited that he is "coming home". His suitcases were crammed with handknit Christmas gifts for all the family. He has also assured me that he will be showing off his Cleveland Browns beanie and socks to everyone he can!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

December is Here

Well, here it is. The first day of December. I have been knitting up a storm trying to finish Christmas gifts. My problem is I have a terrible case of startitis. I want to knit something new! I have all this stashed yarn that is calling to me. I have to be strong and not listen. I have to finish up the projects left for Christmas. Or at least free up some needles.

Hubby is starting the outdoor decoration of the house. I have to monitor his progress or our house will look like the Griswold house in Christmas vacation. I think his ultimate goal is to have the house visible from space. I just hope that we do not overtax the wiring on the house. We learned last year that if the Christmas lights are one you can't use the microwave or you will blow the fuse. (Rewiring the house is on the big to do list). I also help with design features. ("No Honey. I don't remember the bible mentioning a snowman bring gifts to baby Jesus so put the snowman elsewhere.")

We are getting ready to get our tree. Having a tree and 3 cats is always an experience. I have learned that they do not like tree skirts. (Cats are so good at expressing their dislike of things with bodily functions) I remember the first year I had a cat. I was sitting on the couch reading and suddenly I saw an ornament fly off the tree and across the room. This was odd. Suddenly another flew in the opposite direction. At that same moment I noticed that my tree had suddenly grown a tail. I parted the branches to find a very innocent looking Sayuri looking at me trying to convince me that "it wasn't her!" When I was a kid we just had a problem with dogs eating the popcorn strands and the occasional piece of tinsel. (Made for very festive poops in the back yard!) Mom always hung bells on the bottom of tree so she would know when someone was messing with the tree. (Kids are as bad a s cats & dogs) I continue that tradition of the bells.

Found this in the paper and I can relate!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


I looked at the calendar and then at my Christmas knitting list. I have a lot of UFO's out there! I categorized them into "stuff to be mailed", "stuff Bob will take back with him" and "everything else". I have to really knuckle down to meet my deadlines! How the heck did the year fly by so fast?

Monday, November 12, 2007

Ah! Autumn!

I really love this time of year. I love the colors of the leaves and the sound of shuffling through them on the lawn. I love the crisp bite of fall in the air. I love the sound of the rain on the roof. I love curling up on the couch with a good book or my knitting and just relaxing.

There is something about this time of year that sets off the nesting instinct in me. I start thinking more about craft projects and baking. I want to spend time with the ones I love.

Yesterday, my hubby took time off of work and the two of us went to Apple Hill. It was so nice to be able to spend a day with him, since at the moment we do not have the same days off. Just being able to spend a day with him was the best birthday present I could have asked for. I really enjoyed the rolling foothills of El Dorado County and seeing the leaves scattered on the country roads. We watched a flock of wild turkeys searching for dinner, unaware that their domesticated cousins will soon be roasting in ovens across the country for Thanksgiving. We ate fresh apple crisp and drank fresh made apple cider. We breathed the crisp clean air and enjoyed the sun in our faces.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Open Casting Call!

Ever wanted to be in a movie? The new Star Trek movie is having an open casting call and looking for the following:

"The call asks for actors and actresses between the ages of 18 and 70 that are "OK with their eyebrows being shaved from the arch outward to portray a Vulcan-type eyebrow shape.
The call also asks for "Talent with interesting and unique facial features such as: long necks, small heads, extremely large heads, wide-set eyes, bug eyes, close-set eyes, large forehead, short upper lip, pronounced cheekbones, over- or undersized ears and/or nose, facial deformities, ultra plain-looking people, ultra perfect-looking people, pure wholesome looks, twins, triplets, emaciated talent, regally poised and postured talent, or other visually unique characteristics."

Visually unique and Ok with having your eyebrows shaved. Sounds like a few college parties I went to way back when!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Cat Scan

I came in to use the computer and found Sayuri sleeping on the flatbed scanner. Does this mean I have a free cat scan?

Friday, October 12, 2007

UK Postal Restrictions

I will soon be posting a package for knitting mystery swap. I was looking on the USPS site to get info about customs and mailing to the UK and found some of the mailing restrictions somewhat humerous:

You can not send:
Cards decorated with mica or ground glass or similar materials unless they are placed in envelopes.
Goods made in foreign prisons, except those imported for a non-commercial purpose or of a kind not manufactured in the UK. (This is why they don't allow sheep in prison)
Horror comics and matrices. (When Knitters Go Bad...)
Obscene articles, prints, paintings, cards, films, videotapes, etc. (No naughty knitting!)
Perishable infectious biological substances. (Why?)
Seal skins except those from an accepted source. (What is an acceptable source?)
Switchblade knives. (Don;t touch my knitting or I will rough you up)
Live bees. (Yea, this was on my list of things to mail in a package)
Live queen bees must be accompanied by an import license issued by a UK Government Agricultural Department and a health certificate issued by the appropriate Government Department of the country of origin stating that the bees are free of disease. (Where does one find a vet who treats bees?)

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Tit Bits

Yesterday, in honor of October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month", my local yarn shop, Babetta's Yarn and Gifts had a "Tit Bits Workshop" where we learned to knit prosthetic breasts for women who have undergone a mastectomy. Babetta graciously donated a fantastic yarn called Super Taj Mahal which is a cashmere, silk and virgin wool blend. It was an amazing experience to sit in the class and listen to the stories the other women had to share. Some were breast cancer survivors, and others, like myself, just knew a close friend or relative who has had breast cancer. One of the women in the class was a very petite Asian woman named Helen who weighed all of 95 pounds. She has never been able to find a prosthetic that fit her properly because she is so petite. She was there with her daughter to learn to make her own.

The class was taught with permission from the designed Beryl Tsang. She is a breast cancer survivor who has such a fantastic sense of humor and great out look. Check out her article from Knitty with the pattern: (I do like the comment about weighted titties being confiscated at airports as "dangerous projectiles". Can you see the headlines? "Hijackers Use Flying Tittie To Take Over Plane" Will be have to register our Tits as "lethal weapons" next?)

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

A Tribute

My Grandmother had a saying that people are like books. Sometimes you only get to see a brief chapter or a couple of pictures. I think it only appropriate that we view Peggy’s life as a book. There certainly were a lot of “characters” in her life.

I grew up knowing her as “Mrs. McClymonds”. She was my neighbor and the librarian at Carmichael Elementary School where I attended in the 70’s. Always driving her old Rambler and sitting behind the desk in the library.

As I grew older, I used to love going up to her house on the 4th of July, which was one day where she let Bob & Bill run wild with fireworks which for a little kid was just the coolest thing.
She and my Mom were great friends who talked almost every day. They also had their little routines. We have a small celebrity in our neighborhood, “Captain Carrot” who jogs by almost every day. Mom & Peggy knew when he would go by and keep watch and then call the other to get them to the window to watch him go by. They were also the self proclaimed “Wild Turkey Watch” of Carmichael. They would call the other to give them updates on flock movements.

After my Mom passed away, she became like a second Mom to me. She never forgot a birthday or an anniversary. I have since come to learn that she had elaborate filing and organizational systems that helped her keep track of these things. She helped me with my knitting questions and was so excited when I knit my first pair of socks.

I learned more about the earlier chapters in her life as I grew older and she moved from being "Mrs. McClymonds" to "Peggy". I learned of her losing a brother in the Normandy invasion . I learned of her having another brother who was a Brigadier General in the Marine Corp. I learned of her youth on ranches in Nevada and I learned of how she met her husband who was just coming to the ranch to buy a pig and ended up with a wife.

The last few months I have also learned about her strength of character. Eleanor Roosevelt said “A woman is like a tea bag- you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water” . I saw that strength as she battled her failing body these past few months. She never lost her sense of humor or her beautiful spirit.

While this chapter is over, there is an epilogue. She has left her legacy in those she leaves behind. Her family is as close as ever and have definitely inherited her strength and her outlook. They are writing their own life books now, but they have a wonderful reference book to refer to.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

My Brother woudld agree with this!

Claudia --
Extremely flatulent
'How will you be defined in the dictionary?' at

Sad Day

Yesterday was a difficult day. I received the phone call I have been expecting and dreading at the same time. My dear friend and neighbor passed away early Friday morning. She had been in hospice care and was at home with her husband and 3 of her 4 children. I will miss her. She was like a second mother to me as well as one of my knitting mentors. I would go and visit her and we would talk about sock knitting and various projects. Her oldest daughter and I became quite close during this time. As soon as I learned of Peggy's passing, I cast on a prayer shawl for Mary. I sat with the family and knitted while we talked and reminisced. It helped me to be able to keep my mind occupied with the simple trinity stitch.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Amish Woman on the Information Superhighway

Well, I guess I must be the only knitter who still doesn't have a blog so I have decided to join the 21st century and start one. I have always had great aspirations to keep a journal or diary and I usually do really well for about a week. I still have my diary from when I was a child and I think there are a total of 10 entries in it. Hopefully I will fare better here.

My friends tease me that I must be Amish. I don;t have a cell phone or cable tv. I enjoy knitting , sewing and home canning veggies from our garden. I am not into keeping with the fashion police. I think that clothes should be comfortable, complimentary in color and cut and be your own style, not what someone deems "stylish". Style is a very personal thing.

I am married with 3 grown stepsons and one grand daughter (I married an Old Fart). Its kind of fuinny. My brother became a grandpa in his 40s and I teased him about being old. Well, God was listening because he made me a Grandma at 38! Ha! My children at home are Honey and Sweetie my dogs and MoMo, Sayuri and Itty Bitty my 3 cats.

Well, I am off to knit and rest since I am at home sick today.