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Thursday, June 30, 2011


After picking up DD at the airport and dropping off bags at home, we heading out for brunch at First Watch. Sorry, no pictures there, but it was yummy. We chatted and enjoyed ourselves, then walked over to get our pretty toes and fingers taken care of. We both LOVE a good pedicure. We even went for the deluxe, was only 4 dollars more then the regular, so hey....why not. Our skin colors are so very different. We always laugh when we get pedicures...I always go for coral toes and she goes for the deeper colors. We rarely do a manicure, but this time we did! I just did clear and she did a light color. Here we are, all tangled up trying to get a picture as we were laughing.

pedicure and manicure
pretty toes

I'm totally clueless about Indian food, but DD lunchis adventurous in her eating and loves it. So after our massages the 2nd day, we headed to lunch with an area Indian Buffet. It was a bit spicy for me, though she thought it a bit bland compared to where she normally eats. She eats Indian enough at a favorite spot in St. Louis they know her name. I can't even tell you what we ate, she was going to write it down for me and forgot so I could tell you. lol The rice was good, much lighter then what I'm used to. The things that look like french fries are veggies of some sort. The yellowish stuff on the left is potatoes and cauliflower, and to it's right a spinach something. Probably not something I would do again, certainly not on my own. She said it was ok, but not as good as what she normally has.


No visit here at home is complete without a trip to The Half Price Book Store. She loves to read, she consumes books and they don't have Half Price Book Stores in St. Louis. We both found some good deals. The Debbie Macomber and Knitters Bible are mine, and the other books got packed up for her return trip to St. Louis.

Restaurant WeekAlways interested in saving money, getting good deals, so wanted to pass along this tip. Are you up to speed about when Restaurant Week is in your area? If not, do yourself a favor and find out about it. Most of the good restaurants participate and you can save yourself some money. It's a great way to go someplace new too. AND...on that same note. Are you registered with Groupon? If not, why not? It's free, it changes daily. Sign up is easy, free, and worthwhile. You can get deals for going out, food, movies, concerts, clothes, even groceries. Fill out your profile. You don't have a minimum so if you get a deal in your email that doesn't appeal to you, simply delete it and see what comes through the following day. You can also do this from your smart phone if you have one. ( I don't, but hubby does.) Anyway...I highly recommend it. Click HERE to check it out. I just purchased my 3rd since joining about a week ago. Purchased a tour of historic homes, 50% at an Italian Restaurant, and Beer Tasting at a Pub (hubby will love that last one).

**edited to add this: Thanks! DD you're the best.
Christine (The DD) said...Yellow/Cauliflower dish = Aloo Gobi

Spinach dish = Saag Paneer

Orange & rice = Chicken Tikka Masala

'French fries' = Vegetable Pakoras

Bread = Naan

It was by no means my favorite Indian place, too mild, not enough spices to really be like my buddies at Rasoi. Oh well, you try something new every once and again!

Work in Progress Wednesday Post HERE

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wedding Ghan, opinions needed Please and Thanks

Work in Progress, Wed.

knitted wedding ghanI have two strips for the wedding ghan currently done and am working on the 3rd (of 5 ?). My question for you all is this (click to enlarge)

How do I want to put this together? That is whip stitch vs crocheting an edge around each strip and then either crocheting together or whip stitching it together. If I had done all the separate squares, I would have edge them all in one color and joined them in the same color, probably whip stitch, which would have looked window pane like. However, by doing the strips I've eliminating the extra time for casting on and binding off over and over and over. The edges are a bit curled, but not badly as often happens with knitting vs crocheting. The pattern you now can see is the traditionally diagonal. So, crocheting an edge will flatten the curled edge which is good, but then does it detract from the diagonal pattern? Whip stitching the strips together and blocking will also take care of the slight curl. Or at least I think it should. Adding a crocheted edge increasing the size, but then which color? And that probably means I need to go buy more yarn (which would be the 3rd time I've purchased yarn for this ghan...the disadvantage of not going with a "real" pattern and guesstimating how much yarn is needed.

Then again, I might have enough yarn to make 6 strips if after doing 5 it looks like it needs to be larger? Sometimes when ghans are too large they're awkward, so I'm really thinking.

Would love some thoughts on over all design regarding edging or not. Please weight in. Thanks!

Groupon a work in progress also. lol, seriously I just purchased my 2nd groupon a short while ago and am therefore still learning how to do things on the webpage etc. Looking forward to saving more money, and trying out new places. My first groupon is for a historical homes tour which I'm really excited about. The 2nd one is for an Italian Restaurant nearby, that I didn't even know existed for 50% off! How cool is that? Do you Groupon? Give it a try by clicking here
**it's not just for young cool hip folks, old farts like me can have fun and save money with it too!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Finished Object Friday, sorta?

knitted stripA completed strip for the wedding...probably a bit of a cheat; but it's all I've got to show you as a finished object...it is an object, not a project...soooooooo. I'm posting it and counting it. lol Since photographing this strip, I've been working on the 2nd strip which is coming along nicely and a bit faster then this first one did. I'm on the 5th color block of the 2nd strip. YIPPEE.

This is knitted and is the item I've been referring to as The Wedding Ghan. The light tan is the Double Eyelet pattern. I'm happy with it, and was a bit nervous when I started it, as it's my first eyelet pattern, and the first time I've done a pattern with psso in it. I had to get on line to figure out what it is (pass the slip stitch over). The medium tan is called Little Blocks and is the easiest of the 3 patterns to do...I really like this stitch and can see me using it often in other projects. The dark brown block is called Arrow Heads and is the most tedious for me with the counting; but provides lots of texture which I like, though believe it will look better once blocked. I think it's odd it doesn't have an edge of 2 or 3 garter stitches to keep it flat; but the book was trying hard I think to have all the blocks be the same size.

Click to enlarge the picture so you can see the 3 patterns and textures better. Girl time will officially start in about 2 hours...I'm sooooooooooooooooo excited.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Pink Poddle Ghan

pink poodle ghanBeen awhile since I posted an update to show you progress on this diagonal striped afghan. It reminds me of back in the day, poodle skirts for those of ya as old as me. Thus it's name. When I started this ghan I had several charities in mind, one of which was my very own Bridge and Beyond for the gals at Nancy Place through Faith Mission. Then I heard about the need in Joplin, Missouri and believe if I can get it done anytime in the near future; that's where it's headed. Those folks lost so much, perhaps some young girl will enjoy curling up with this and find some comfort. Perhaps too, someone as old as me who remembers poodle skirts? I've laid this aside though for awhile in order to work on The Wedding Ghan, the wedding is after all Aug 13th...

I find when I'm tired I work on the poodle ghan, as I don't have to count or do different stitches, like I do for the wedding ghan. Don't like working on it when I'm tired, I've already frogged and made changes/corrections too many times.

Normally I have lots of projects going, but for now am just working back and forth between these 2. I do have plenty of other wip (work in progress) pieces, but I've put them all away for the time being.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Girl Time Soon

Looking forward to a weekend with my DD soon and girl time. We only get to have girl time once every couple of years it seems, but we always enjoy it when we do. I can't say I ever had "girl time" in the same way with my own Mother when she was living. Things were different then. Parents worked, life was harder, household chores certainly took more time; leaving little time for frivolous things. Since Mom and I always lived in the same city, it wasn't like we had to travel to visit each other; but we didn't plan time together. She was busy with work before she retired, as was I. Then she and Dad were busy spending time together, as were my husband and I (plus I still was, and am employed). We talked on the phone alot, had dinner as a family, but I can't really think of time when just she and I went to lunch or dinner. We just didn't do that. Our interests too were vastly different. I do remember when I turned 30 (a very long time ago), a shopping venture; but it was just for the afternoon.

So what do my DD and I do when we have girl time? We always get a massage, and often a pedicure. I don't believe my Mother ever had either. One didn't spend money and time on things like that. As I said, different time, different interests. I've got appointments lined up for us both to have a pedicure and a manicure the day she flies in. Then I think we'll paint pottery, that's something we've done together the last couple of times we've had "girl time". She's quite good at it, and well...........I try. Though perhaps it's silly to have a manicure if we're going to be painting...hum... We'll do lunch, or brunch here at home before the pedicures or eat in the shopping center where the salon. If weather permits (and that's a big if given how lousy it's been now for some time), we might opt for Shakespeare in the park that evening. We both really enjoy that, and it's free! The Scarlet Pimpernel is playing, and it's one I've not seen before.

We have massages scheduled for Sat morning, so we'll most probably do lunch afterwards, and then hit a yarn store or two...yeah, she's like me, she loves looking at yarn. She also knits and crochets, just doesn't have much time for it. Then I have a feeling she'll want to hit the used book store. They don't have Half Price Books in St. Louis, and she LOVES books, she doesn't read them, she consumes them. lol

We've done our "girl times" previously in Baltimore (when she lived there), in St. Louis where she currently lives, and in Breckenridge when we were vacationing. This is the first time we've actually done it here..at home. Looking forward to it, though it will be brief; she's only here for 2 nights.

Do you do "Girl Time" with your Daughters? Did you do "Girl Time" with your Mother, or do you still?

Friday, June 17, 2011

39 Years Ago

wedding dressThirty-nine years ago at 4:00 pm in The Whetstone Park of Roses, walking through the trees on my way to marry Ernie, my honey. Mom made my dress, white dotty swiss. The flowers were bachelor buttons (which are sorta purple) and white carnations. We had no huge round of showers, no bachelor or bachelorete parties, no rehearsal dinner. We simply got married because we loved each other and wanted to get married. We didn't have a long engagement, live together before hand, or buy a house, or have pets together first. No, we did it the old fashion way. We got married, we lived in a small apartment with hand me down furniture. He went to school part time and worked part time, I worked full-time. It was wonderful. We had a blast, and never felt like we missed out on anything. We spent time together, did cheap things. We didn't go out to eat often, buy new cars, lots of cloths or take expensive vacations. We camped, ate lots of tuna casserole and had the time of our lives.

Love you Ernie, what a great 39 years together we've had.

Saturday, June 11, 2011


memories signI photographed this sign the other day when my Dad and I traveled to Urbana to visit my 92 year old Aunt in assisted living. These words have been haunting me a bit since I first read the sign. Yes, at that age she doesn't remember things like she used to; but actually her memory isn't much of an issue. I photographed the sign because it makes me think of a dear friend with severe Alzheimer's.

We all know the disease affects many elderly, but sadly it affects many younger people too. My friend was diagnosed several years back, so obviously had it awhile before being diagnosed. I've read quite a bit on line about the 7 stages and she's most definitely in the late stages (final stages, stage 7). She was in her 50's when diagnosed.

She's not been able to carry on a conversation now for a couple of years, and has not been able to be left alone while her husbands at work. She requires 24 x 7 care.
The following is a cut and paste from The National Alzheimer's Association.

Alzheimer's disease has no survivors. It destroys brain cells and causes memory changes, erratic behaviors and loss of body functions. It slowly and painfully takes away a person's identity, ability to connect with others, think, eat, talk, walk and find his or her way home.

We've spent many a vacation at the beach through the years; even when our girls were all young. We have many memories. Recently, hubby and I spent a week at the beach again with these very good friends; in hopes of bringing back some of those old memories we so cherish.

Share a memory with someone you love, maybe someone from your past. Keep memories alive, tell family stories, reminisce with friends. Take time to let people you know you care about them, while you can. It's more important then you know.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Third Times The Charm, I think?

Work In Progress Wednesday

first afghan stripPlan A was to be to 2 colors, the light and middle color above, was to be separate squares using dishcloth patterns. I blogged about it HERE, you might remember. That was designs using the light color, garter stitch squares using the middle color. The idea being it would provide both color contrast and texture contrast. Onto plan B, because the light colored squares designs weren't showing up very well. That was designs on medium color, using light for garter; and or designs on both...oh wait. Plan B 2 was hatched. I wasn't going to have enough yarn, enter the 3rd color, the above dark brown. After making 4 squares you see HERE, 2 of the light and medium color....plan C was hatched.
close up afghan stripSpoke with DD and we decided to nix the dishcloth pattern idea completely, just weren't seeing the designs, and if you did, without knowing what they were suppose to be...you really didn't know. Using my stitch books and book of 200 squares comes plan C. Three colors, three squares each a different pattern/texture. Then I thought to help make up lost time, rather then making separate squares I would make strips to eliminate lots of casting on, binding off, and minimize the stitching together.
yarn colorsUsing 200 Knitted Blocks by Jan Eaton I soon learned in order to do a strip, you need the same number of stitches in the cast on. Searched the book for 3 squares I thought complimented each other, 3 that had the same number of cast on stitches and have my fingers crossed this works. I truly need want real opinions here folks. Using Plymouth Encore Chunky (25% wool 75% acryclic), and size 10 Addie Turbo's, will make it soft, warm-heavy, but washable.

The 3 squares very in that the lightest color is an eyelet pattern (lightest in stitch appearance), the medium tan is called Little Blocks (I think medium in pattern appearance), while the dark brown is called Arrowheads, and is, I believe the heaviest in pattern appearance. The Arrowhead section has purls on the edge and so curls in a bit; but I believe when stitched to the next strip will smooth out nicely and be even.

This is a wedding gift for my DD best friend. She's the maid of honor. I wanted the ghan to be appropriate for her hubby to use as well. Earth colors should blend with any decor...right?

**note to my fellow bloggers, and wipw members, please please KILL the word verification, try it for a week, you'll be amazed and pleased with how well the filter on blogger works. You really really don't need the captcha thing, it's sooooooooo annoying, and time consuming. Try it at least, change your settings. Most of us can't see those idiot letters and they really aren't needed, the filter is what get's rid of the spam** Please and thanks

Monday, June 06, 2011

Me Time

What do you like to do with "Me Time?" I like to get up when I want, not with an alarm, sit in jammies drink coffee, check in here on the computer. While on the computer I like to check my mail, see what's going on with my blogs, check my dashboard to see if it's time to write another blog or if I have one in que to be published. Then do some knitting and or crocheting, then more computer stuff like checking in on facebook, ravelry and the like. I like quiet, so I do not turn on the TV, or radio, nor do I have the sound on my computer. I like peace. I enjoy alone time. I can spend hours like that.

Sit in the living room a bit with the yarn, then move to the computer and back and forth. It breaks things up. Sometimes you have to throw in things like doing laundry, running the vaccum, making the bed naturally. But, even then...if you're alone you can do a little of this, and a little of that. Like maybe knit 5 rows, throw a load in, visit blogs for half an hour, by then it's time to put the wash in the dryer...see what I mean. A bit of this and that.

Monday, though...that rarely works. Monday means you have to start your week, check your to do list, see what the priorities are. On top of that for me I have to verify my ever changing work schedule, make sure I've written it on the calendar. No 2 days are the same for me. So, Monday Already!

Care to join this linky for Monday? Love to have you.
1. Leave a comment
2. Write your Monday Already Post with a Link to this post
3. Add yourself to the linky
4. Visit others on the list. If you're an early bird to add your name, do hop back over later in the day to see whom else has joined the fun.

Anxious to see What Monday Already means for you all.

Saturday, June 04, 2011

A Good Yarn by Debbie Macomber

bookThis is my 3rd book about a knitting shop and it's owner; though my first of Debbie Macombers. It's interesting to me how similar they are. Lost souls come together knit and the world is all wonderful again. Ok, that might be an over simplification; as there are other details involved...but it does seem that's the type of book they all have been.

Now they all have different problems and solve them differently and together they seem to bring out the best in each other. That's interesting to me given the ladies involved are different ages, come from different backgrounds, and initially really have nothing in common. One book was The Knitting Circle by Ann Hood, and one was Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs.

When I think of clusters of people who only associate with one group, say their church group; their neighbors, only their family, or perhaps only their work group or only the people at their childrens school, it makes me think how much they're missing out by not being with people different than them. This book was perhaps the sappiest of the 3, and the furthiest from reality it seemed to me. Though I did enjoy it. I think maybe I'm getting into the rhythm of these books. I read this sitting poolside and on the beach on a recent trip to Myrtle Beach. One needs a fluffy book I think for that setting.

There were emotional ups and downs and even when I thought them a bit unbelievable, I found myself wanting to pick up the book and see what happened to the silly teenager, or the UPS deliveryman. This is a series I think. Believe the others might be too. Will have to double check that and see what books are next so I can have them on hand for the next poolside or beach side adventure.

Have you read this one? Did you like it? Do you plan to read others by this author?

I had yarn of course with me and worked on the wedding ghan, but one really can't knit or crochet at the poolside or at the beach...so reading about it seems to be the way to go.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Squares, counts as Done?

4 knitted squaresOk, so this might be a bit of cheating for FOF (finished object Friday). Or is it.... showing 4 finished objects? lol You see before you 4 finished squares.

Plan A was doing the designs on the light color and doing good old garter stitch squares with the darker color, to provide contrast both with color and with texture. After completing the first square (lower left which is a frog in case you can't tell), I wasn't sure this was going to work. So, wondered if the design would show up better with the darker shade. Figured I'd do one square in the darker shade and see, and then flip my 2 colors. Well...I did the one in the lower right (sunflower), and I still was unsure; so I did 2 more, one in each color. Cardinal is the 2nd light color and a bea skep is the 2nd darker color. Then, I re-calculated and decided I wasn't going to have enough yarn anyway. Ok, I could get a 3rd color to blend and do garter stitch squares with that. Still....if I didn't tell you what the designs were, could you tell? DD and I discussed it after sending her email pics and well..........I don't think so. Oddly enough I think they show up better here in the pictures then when you actually see them in person. Well, that's really not good.

Bought 3rd color, but you'll have to wait til I get a photo of it. Discussed the problem with the lady at the yarn shop. She thought maybe using a smaller needle would make the design pop more. If I'm going to frog these 4 finished squares....do I want to do that...or come up with what will now be plan C?

I can tell you the 3rd color is a darker brown, DD and I thought sticking with earthy colors was best. She suggested a chocolate brown and or forest green. Green didn't exist, so I got brown, though not sure I would call it chocolate.

Thoughts? Opinions?

Here it was laid out as a WIPW

Follow up on my question regarding the graphs from Rav. I've messed with it a bit and have determined it only lists projects you have listed as work in progress projects from your Rav. page, so my question about more recent projects not showing up is because they are listed as complete. I tend to only list them at that stage, or at least lately that's what I've done. So, conclusion is if one wants to follow and have projects staring at them as a reminder of what you've got going is to list your projects in the beginning and as you work on them change the percentage, they will show up on your graph until you mark them as completed. Even if you show it as 100% done on your project page on Rav it will still show up on the graph on your blog until you change the drop down box that has the option of completed/done. For those who responded via comments and said they didn't know how to add the graphs, here's the LINK on Rav.

**Pop back in on Monday folks, thought I'd try my hand again at a linky to help us all out with visits and spread some linky love. **

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Wedding Ghan

Got the idea from this from doing the butterfly dishcloth you may have seen HERE. My DD's best friend is getting married in a few months and I wanted to make her a ghan. I've been after my daughter now for several months to find out her colors, and she's failed to do so. She tells me she's not a bright colors person; but beyond that....argh. So, I decided something subtle was the way to go. The plan is to use the lighter solid tan for the design squares and alternate that with the sorta tweedy darker tan for a subtle color contrast. The darker squares will basic garter stitch so that should also provide a texture contrast square to square. My hope is that will also help the designs pop out a bit more.

Using nice washable wool, Plymouth Encore Chunky, size 10 needles. The yarn is 75% acrylic and 25% wool. That should give it nice body, a good soft feel, be warm, and several steps above A Red Heart type yarn. The skeins have 143 yards; which surprised me when I got home ...as I thought it was 200 yards. I know some fleck Plymouth I was looking at was 200 yards, hope I have enough yarn, as I got all they had of the darker tweed.

**Question, notice the graph I've recently added from Rav? It's not showing as many projects as it did when I first added it yesterday. Why is that? AND, how do you get it to show more recent projects? Those listed above are super old projects.**