Thursday, October 20, 2016

"I See the Moon...

...and the moon sees me..."  Every time I see the moon, especially a full-ish moon, that song plays in my head and the voice singing it belongs to the then-three year old DD walking on a path in a campground when we walked around a curve to see the full moon framed by the tall pines on either side of the path.  She stood stock still, folded her hands in front of her, and sang the whole song, beginning to end, before taking another step.  I wish I could somehow make a "hard" copy of that tiny silhouetted girl, the alley of trees, and the big, bright moon.

On Tuesday the date kind of slapped me in the face, reminding me that I need to crochet 17 hexagons to make a Christmas stocking for OJ and Christmas isn't that far away.  Yikes.  Fortunately I already had yarns picked out and bagged with the pattern so all I had to do was go downstairs, figure out where I'd put said bag, get a crochet hook out of the keeper, and start.  I've got 3 done so far and I really really like the colors.  Yeah, yeah, I know, green, red and white are traditional Christmas colors, but I like this green, which has black flecks so it's not so GREEN, with the wine red and bright white.  I'm using the same pattern that I made his daddy's stocking with almost 38 years ago but I'm mixing up the colors.

There wasn't a scrap of sunrise color on the clouds this morning.  Maybe I got up too late but it was just too easy to bonk the snooze button a few, okay six, times.  It's so hard to make myself get up when it's dark.  It's hard to get up when it's light too, but getting up when it's dark seems extra hard.

After having my new phone up and running for a week, I'm finally getting around to unwrapping the User Guide and taking it to work with me to see if it won't tell me how to make the phone do things I want it to.  DIL1 showed me how to make the text notification sound audible and how to answer calls (swipe, don't poke) the other day.  It's good to have younger people in your life when technology gets the best of you.  Which it does...Most. Of. The. Time.  I hate that my phone is smarter than me.

October 20--Lucille Khornak, 000-97-DS56-SH.  His smooth, plump hand looked so small on top of her wrinkled, deflated looking one.  Grayson had come to Villa Pacifica with his Cub Scout pack to sing Christmas carols and play games with the residents.  After the singing there were cookies and cider and Grayson happened to sit at Millie's table.  He wasn't as nervous around the old people as some of the other boys were.  He said he liked the stores his grandpa had told him before he died so he figured other "grands" would have good stories too.  Millie was alone and didn't talk much but Grayson asked her questions about growing up and her school days.  Soon he was riding his bike over after school a few days a week to fill Millie in on how school was going and listen to her talk about her life.

After I get off work today Durwood and I are zooming off to spend the night in Kenosha because on Friday we're meeting his brother BE and his wife in Ft. Wayne, IN for the weekend to sit in a Comfort Suites and catch up.  I did a little Internet search and found out there are two yarn shops in Ft. Wayne.  I'm planning a little jaunt to check them out on Saturday afternoon.  It's my duty to report back to the Knitting Guild.  It would be irresponsible of me not to go, don't you think?  Time to shower, breakfast and go keep the world safe from SCUBA diving.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Sock & Puppet

One of the reasons people say they knit socks from the toes up is so that they can try it on as they go.  I'm here to say that you can try on a cuff down sock as you go too.  I need a couple more inches of foot before starting the toe decreases.

A few months ago LC and I went to a different library for storytime and we played with a box of puppets while waiting for it to start.  LC really liked the puppets so I've been looking around for some nice ones.  I've found some but they're rather pricey, more Santa or birthday present level, so I decided to draw a pattern and make my own.  I had some muslin scraps downstairs and part of a purse lining that I made way too long so I sewed one to the other, cut out my pattern, and got ready to sew.  Then I thought that I should probably put hair on before sewing the front to the back so I found some dark brown yarn in a bin, cut some lengths, and sewed them near the top of the head and again across where I figured the nape of the neck would be, if it had a neck.  I used a Sharpie to draw a face on the front.  I used painter's tape to corral the yarn while sewing the front to the back.  It became clear when I turned it right side out that it's too small for my hands but I figured it'd be just right for LC.  It's nowhere near the best puppet in the land but it'll be a good plaything for a little kid.  (I will be enlarging my pattern to make another one more my size so our puppets can talk to each other.)  Mom used to make a sock puppet with Dad's orphan socks.  She'd cut the toe along the sides and sew a red felt mouth in the opening and two buttons on top for eyes.

October 18--Chip Henderson Photography, Bike Repair.  Hank picked up a wrench from his workbench and looked out at Caleb kneeling in the grass, his upended bicycle in front of him.  It had been years since Hank had worked on a balky gear-shifter and chain.  He knew Caleb thought his grandpa could do anything.  He didn't want to disappoint the boy.  Caleb was still a little shy around his grandfather.  Lana had come home unannounced from the West Coast four months ago.  She had been surplussed out of a job by a merger and things were too expensive out there.  Here in Wisconsin times weren't that much better but at least prices were lower.  Hank hitched up his jeans and strode out onto the lawn.  "Found a wrench," he said, "now let's get this contraption fixed."  "Do you know how?" Caleb asked.  Hank shrugged a shoulder and smiled at the boy.  "Well, not exactly, but I expect two smart guys like us should be able to figure it out."  Two heads, one graying and the other black, leaned over the bike and got to work.

There's almost nothing you can't fix with a wrench and a hammer, oh, and Duct tape.  You probably should have a screwdriver too.  It's a nice sunny day.  I think it's time to walk to the bank.

Monday, October 17, 2016

A Random Collection of Stuff

I have a handful of random photos that I don't know how to seamlessly put together so I thought I'd just start slapping them on here with a little explanation, kind of a list sort of thing with some narration.  Hey, I can make bullet points on this thing...

  • There was a flyover before yesterday's Packer game.  These guys were loud, a low grumble heard from far off, and I have absolutely no clue what kind of airplane helicopter hybrid they are.

  • Clouds rolled in overnight so while I got up too late to witness the actual sunrise, it still looked pretty when I got out there and looked to the East.  We're supposed to maybe have storms later.


    • The nasturtiums, all two of them, are still blooming.  I need to plant more next year, many more so I can thwart the depredations of the chipmunks.  

    • Also I love the red rockets of pineapple sage flowers.


    •  The shed is playing host to some critters.  When I went out yesterday afternoon to put the patio table, etc. away this spider, body about dime sized, had colonized the upper corner of a door.  I don't mind spiders. 
    • However this nest of hornets and all the hornets lounging on the edges of the doors stopped me in my tracks.  I watched to see that they weren't very active so I did get the table in there but didn't spend any time rearranging things or trying to get the chairs stowed.  I'll be stopping for a can of bug killer when I'm out and about today, you'd better betcha.

    • I finally dragged myself down to the sewing machine yesterday afternoon (once the flyover was past) and made another knit shirt, this time in the correct size (the last one's a little big).  Once again there wasn't enough of the striped fabric to make the whole thing so the back and one of the neckbands are white.  I cut out a neckband in the stripe and the white and layered them.  Not much of an alteration but I feel good about it.  The striped fabric is very thin, what I think they call tissue knit, that's tricky to sew and snags like crazy.  This was an easy, inexpensive way to try the fabric out.  (Doesn't it look like I'm standing funny? I need to ask the chiro if my right hip's out of whack even more than it feels like it is when I see her on Wednesday.)
    I didn't write last night.  I stayed up until midnight, like a goofball, so I just fell into bed, did my stretches and turned out the light.  Happy Monday!

    Sunday, October 16, 2016

    More Done

    I had a bad day yesterday.  I didn't get dressed, didn't do much more than glare at things and people.  I must have been a joy to be around.  (Maybe that's why Durwood took so many naps yesterday... ) Anyway, I was able to claw my way toward the light in the evening, sat on the couch and finished the Carnival Doublethick Cloth.  I didn't reuse all the yarn I frogged from the unsatisfactory crocheted cloth but this seems like a good size, plus I have more of this bright yarn to knit into something else.  Bonus!


    On Friday we stopped at Fleet Farm after our stints in various radiological pursuits so I could buy some birdseed and I saw something that, well, that I just had to share with you all.  In the "Cammo Has Gone Too Far" Department, I give you this--a lace and rhinestone cammo bra with matching panties.  There were thongs too, and teddies and other unmentionables in various versions of cammo.  I mean... Who...?  I need a gallon jug of brain wash fluid, stat.

    The sky was beautiful this morning but, more than that, the air felt like silk.  Today is one of those perfect fall days, sunny and clear, warm and cool at the same time.  There's a football game in town later which means that there'll be a fly-over to cap off this perfect day.

    October 16--Chip Henderson Photography.  From the plane the country side looked like a crazy quilt of colors divided by dark gray roads.  Rivers meandered reflecting the blue sky, adding a sparkle to the tableau.  Liz took some digital photos and made a few notes, planning to make an "aerial view" quilt to enter into the fair.

    I kept falling asleep so there're squiggles after "meandered" and "planning" so I gave up the next time I regained consciousness and turned off the light.  Today the patio furniture gets put away but I'm not getting the snowblower out yet.  No-sirree-bob.

    Saturday, October 15, 2016

    Done And Done

    I was able to focus last night just enough to finish the Inside Outside Scarf at Friday Night Knitting.  I even got the tails sewn in.  Next it gets a nice soak in wool wash before being patted out to dry.  Then it'll most likely go into the "gift" pile since it's not my colors.  Why make it, you ask?  Well, the "knit 1 below" is a technique I'd never tried so this was a free and fairly simple way to try it out.  Now I know how to do it so if I ever see another pattern I like with it, I'll feel confident I can do it.  I suppose I could have made something smaller but finishing this scarf also removes two skeins of yarn from my stash.  Here's all that's left.

    The other thing I spent time doing at knitting last night was start to transfer my Contacts from my old, Windows phone (on the right) into my new Android phone (on the left).  I took the new phone, box and all, back to Walmart to coerce a Millennial named Christopher into activating it and transferring my old number to my new phone.  I felt marginally bad about it--until I was leaving when a young guy walked up the very same phone (no box) saying he needed help getting it activated.  Made me feel better instantly.  So I spent the morning and into the afternoon today inputting my contacts which did not transfer.  I was thrilled to figure out that I could remove the SD card from the old phone and insert it into the new phone and all (or most) of my photos and videos went with it.  Whew.

    While Durwood was getting a scan yesterday I had my complimentary, intro to Medicare bone density test and a mammogram.  I got a nice notebook with a stylus pen for having a mammo.  After that test smushes them so flat, I feel like I should be able to roll my boobs up like a window shade to tuck them back into my bra.  It doesn't hurt, exactly, but it sure is uncomfortable is all I'm saying.  I like the notebook better than the carnation I got a couple years back.  I'll have the notebook for a while, the flower was dead in a couple days.  Not the message I think the "breast health" people wanted to convey.

    October 15--Rob Goldman.  This was the happiest time of their lives.  Their jobs were going well, they'd moved into a new house in a great neighborhood, and their kids were succeeding in school and sports.  Stella and Jack held hands across the table of their favorite restaurant, smiling into each others' eyes and feeling just the tiniest bit smug about how well their lives were going.  It's never a good idea to tempt Fate like that.

    And, no, I really don't have any idea what's just offstage up there.  I got that far and my brain blinked off so I turned off the light and followed its lead.  Man, it's dark and windy today.  A good day to spend piled up in your jammies eating soup and watching crap on TV.  Or sitting on the couch updating a new cellphone.

    Friday, October 14, 2016


    It got cold last night.  Cold enough to freeze the birdbath to ice.  The rising sun was defrosting it but I was a nice person and put a half-gallon of hot water in it to hurry things along so none of the birdies froze their toes.  It feels too early in the season to get the birdbath heater hooked up so I'll be ferrying warm water out there as need be until it's frozen so solid that I can lever the "water" out to be replaced by liquid water.

    I didn't get to cut out another shirt yesterday after all.  Turned out that there wasn't enough fabric to make the whole shirt out of the single length I had with me (and I suspected that as I prewashed and hung it on the line to dry) so my plan is to dig around to see what I might have to coordinate with it.  I see another "design element" shirt on my horizon.

    That meant that I had plenty of time to binge-watch episodes of Grace and Frankie, a Netflix series about two couples of 70-year-olds whose husbands have been law partners for decades.  The men (Sam Waterson and Martin Sheen) come out, divorce their wives (Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda), and move in together before marrying.  It's very funny because, of course, both the women are total opposites but end up being each others' best friend.  The men aren't as funny because, well, who could complete with Lily and Jane?  Or just Lily?  It also gave me time to knit a lot on the Inside Outside scarf. Look at how little the balls of yarn are now.  If I can concentrate on the pattern well enough tonight at Friday Night Knitting I might get it done, otherwise I'll knuckle down over the weekend and finish it.  I'm ready to be done with it.

    After supper I whipped up a batch of Curried Butternut Squash soup.  I doctored up a 1 point per serving WW recipe, adding chickpeas for protein and sauteed mushrooms for extra flavor.  I made a tactical error and put the chickpeas in the oven to roast with the onions and squash so ended up having to puree them too, which wasn't in my plan, but it's good soup.  I'll work out making some oven-toasted pita chip/cracker/bread things to have with it for next week's work lunches sometime this weekend.

    October 14--James Kay, BEC--122.  Ann lay on her back on the white sandy seafloor watching the sun sparkle on the little wavelets far above.  She watched her bubbles stream toward the surface like strings of mercury beads.  People thought that it was quiet underwater but it wasn't.  Even down there at 90 feet she could hear the pieces of broken coral rolling together in the mild surf, it sounded like wind chimes.  Parrotfish crunched bites of coral to eat the algae-rich polyps, then they pooped a bit of sand as they swam away.  Shrimp snapped their claws to drive predators away, it sounded like popping corn.  Ann loved knowing things no everyone knew.  She smiled to herself as she watched a speedboat plow a foamy white furrow overhead, then she turned to find her buddy, Cecelia.  It was time to swim back to shore.

    It's a bright sunny day and the lawn mowing guys just arrived.  I'm off to gather up some knitting because Durwood and I scheduled all our diagnostic scans back to back so we'll only have to spend a few hours at the hospital instead of doing them one at a time.  Better to just wipe one day out totally than do an hour here and an hour there, screwing up more than one day.  When you get old-er, you get to be a smarter planner.  More selfish about your time too.

    Thursday, October 13, 2016

    Scarfing Along

    It rained quite a bit yesterday which meant that the dive shop was rather quiet so I had lots of time to knit on the Inside Outside Scarf and, may I say, it's definitely changing colors.  By the end of the day all of the blue and bluish purplish had gone away to be replaced by reddish and yellow, and the ball of yarn is getting pretty floppy and small.  Yay.

    This is a good thing because, dun dun dun duuuuuun, there was frost on the roofs and grass this morning.  Not a killing frost because the herbs on the patio aren't black--yet, but there was definitely a frosty sheen to the roofs (rooves? no, roofs, I'm sure of it) in sight.  Guess I'll be wearing a fleece jacket over my cotton cashmere sweater to work today.

    In between knitting in the morning and knitting in the afternoon, I dug out a couple of long tables (they're pretty skinny so two works better) in back so I could cut out another t-shirt like the one I made last month.  (Once again there wasn't enough of the printed fabric to make the whole shirt so the back and neck band will be white.  I'm calling it a fashion statement.)  Today I'm taking more fabric, linen-like fabric, and a different top pattern to cut that one out because I have nothing on my calendar for Saturday and Sunday so maybe, just maybe, I can get them sewed up this weekend.  I know I'll get the t-shirt one done for sure.  So the fall weather just better cooperate so I don't end up having to bury them under sweaters the first time I wear them.

    October 13--James Kay, BOH--249.  The thatched roofs of the line of huts echoed the mountain peaks that made up the spine of the island.  The water was so clear that the pilings of the huts and wooden walkways seemed to be standing in air.  Jemma lay on her stomach in the shade watching the tiny fish and crabs go about their business under their hut.  Her mother clung to the old idea that you had to stay out of the water for an hour after eating, even though Jemma pointed out that the local kids swam all the time.  Mom wouldn't be swayed.

    I hate to say it but I turned on the furnace this morning.  It was chilly in here and I knew Durwood would be cold all day if I didn't.  I'm such a good wife.  Time to fold my tent and get off to the salt mines to keep the world safe from SCUBA diving.  Toodle-oo.