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October 2009
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December 2009

Happy Monday!

Thanksgiving was wonderful!  The perfect recipe was a long weekend, good food (Smith's lamb was exceptional!), delightful family visits, a movie (weak on plot, but full of great Rock and Roll!), and a ton of time to relax.  It was heavenly.

The yummy food didn't stop because the apple crisp was gone. On Saturday we bought a lemon tart (from Whole Foods) for Sunday dinner (leftovers).  With frozen blueberries (warmed in a pan, crushed as they heated, a good bit of sugar, a touch of lemon juice, dash of salt, and vanilla) a nice tasty sauce was made to pour over the top. Ir made a quick and fabulous treat.

Yummylemontartwithblueberrysauce

Now, it's your turn to share your favorite T-day memory.


Thankfully It's Wednesday

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and family is coming to stay for a couple of days.  Thankfully they traveled to see us so there was no need for me to fly or drive hours and hours.  Traveling is not in my game plan for the near future.

Harvestbountyfortday

Thankfully we'll have a bounty of good food on the table and while we're going non-traditional, it's going to be fun.  Smith is Q-ing a leg of lamb, while I make rice stuffed acorn squash.  A green salad will be a nice compliment and apple crisp follows for dessert.

A couple of years ago I posted this recipe and we still make it much the same way, however, instead of flour I use Pamela's Gluten Free Baking Mix.

Apple Brown Zen

5 cups apples sliced about 1/2" thick (a mixture of sweet and tart creates good all round flavor)  Add a dash of lemon to keep the apples from turning brown
Butter an 8x8 baking dish and fill it with apples

Mix together:

1 cup flour
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
1 stick butter (softened)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/3 cup sliced almonds (optional - for more crunch)
Cover apples with crisp mixture and bake in a 375 oven for 30 minutes. Serve with cream, or ice cream, if desired.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving weekend!!


Thankful Tuesday

Bonesoftreeswithicing

Today I can't help but be thankful for the beauty of winter, especially as I'm in my warm car, home or office. The trees iced with snow are breathtakingly beautiful against the hope of blue in the sky.

Moutainofsnow

Without beautiful days like this winter would be unbearable.

Mz Norma sent out an announcement:

Have you been working on a Red Scarf for the OAF?  If you have it's time to finish it up and get it in the post ASAP. If haven't started a scarf, but want to join the chorus, you still have time to knit one.  Get your needles clacking!


Grateful Monday

Emmylouinconcert

I am grateful for the people who read this blog and for everyone who commented on Friday's post. You have all given sound advice, and support, which I appreciate. Thank you, each and every one of you, for not over indulging my pity party. It was a short lived party. Thursday night I was Monica's guest at a benefit concert for the Zambia Scholarship Fund and Emmylou Harris was the headliner! (I realize the picture sucks but I refused to use my flash.)

The stories and pictures of the children of Zambia put life in perspective. This organization does so much with so little. Fora donation of $20 a Zambian child can go to high school and for $100 they can go to college! Giving is a good way to show how grateful you are for the bounty of your life and 100% of the money goes to the Zambian Fund.

The concert was amazing, as you might expect. Emmylou's voice has stood the test of time and the members of her band were exceptional musicians, too. My body rebelled but, it was worth every single minute. Thank you, Monica for a wonderful evening.

Laceisachallengebutimnotgivingin

The knitting intention for the weekend was to spend time with a bit of laceZzzzzzzzzyarnball.  The weekend WAS spent with a lace shawl, but all the time was spent tinking or frogging.  Part of the lace was messed up (even though it's simple feather and fan). It seems I still can't knit very long without making mistakes.  It took all day Sunday to get back on track...ALL day.

Thankfully I am a persevering person. There are some who would call me stubborn, I know.  Watching myself work through the error, never giving in or ripping out the whole piece (because I did not  want to cast on 388 st again), brought the realization that this attribute (or character flaw) is why I'm actually doing as well as I am.  I'm just too stubborn to give in.


Not So Much Progress

This week I've felt whiny and tired with the added cherry on top of disappointment. It's been 10 weeks since surgery and I know there is no reason to be hard on myself. Every doctor has told me I'm doing better than expected, which is great news, but I still feel like "normal" is slow coming. 

The goal this winter is to get back in shape, but I'm fearful of the gym and all the people who touch the machines. There just isn't enough hand sanitizer to make me feel comfortable. Speaking of hand sanitizer, my knuckles are raw from using it every time I touch a public doorknob, grocery cart, or any other public surface.

See how whiny I am?

Missbbbackisfinishedblog

Anyway, the biggest reason I'm feeling disappointed is how slowly Miss BB is growing. The knit fabric and patterning work beautifully together and I can see how wonderful this sweater will be. However, it's the 20th of the month and I just finished the back. That leaves four pieces to go. Four! Knitting with heavy yarn (Worsted Beaverslide) and large needles (size 8) slows me down. The muscles of my chest aren't quite strong enough to handle long periods of heavy duty knitting. It is unlikely Miss BB will be finished by the end of the month (for NaKniSweMoRav_linkredyarnball) or that I'll have twelve sweaters (for NaKniSweMoDo)Rav_linkredyarnball finished by the end of the year. It's not the end of the world and I'm sure I'll get over the disappointment, but still…

As Anne reminded me, I've been knitting bone 24/7. Too bad it doesn't count as a sweater.


Thankfully

Gardenandrocks

Thankfully we have a nice place to call home, a place that has been ours for 28 years. By some standards it's a palace and by others humble. There are times the condo feels cozy and other times it feels too spacious. When we first moved in we had the intention of buying a house in the future, but the condo life was so easy and gave us more freedom. Instead of mowing the lawn we'd head out for a day of hiking or sailing.  Because someone else takes care of the grounds we've never had to deal with snow in winter or piles of leaves in the fall.  A few years ago, to make life even easier, we filled in the patio area with black rocks and a Japanese Lantern. (Mostly because nothing grew well anyway.)

Moxandmaxafterbath
Thankfully, a few months after we were married we bought our first dog, a schnauzer. Number 3 & 4 live with us now and we can't imagine life without pets. Moxie is deaf and lazy, Max is a little crazy, but we love them and hope they are with us for a long time to come.
Smithmeandagreattimeinbryce

Thankfully my partner in life is Smith. Our 30th anniversary is in January and we're both a little stunned by the number. We have been through so much together and shared many ups and downs. He was a prince during my crisis and convalescence and I can't imagine living without him. Thankfully I'm lucky in love.


A Special Surprise

Shelley and I have been friends for over 20 years and this year she looked forward to (not necessarily happily or unhappily) a big birthday. We're only a few months apart and I know how she feels as my next big one is looming, too.

Over the last few months my plan has been do knit something special for Shelley. She loves clothes, jewelry (accessories of all sorts) and always brings her look together perfectly. Few of us have her talent of making a statement with every aspect of an outfit. She does it daily, which meant the gift had to be just the right thing.

Beginningofjunoregina

Before heading back to the hospital for surgery I readied supplies for a project that felt like the right gift. If there was any hope of finishing in time I had to start while convalescing. A large ball of yarn was wound and tucked into a bag along with the pattern and needles. As soon as I came home, and felt up to knitting (a day or so), I started the project.

Centerofjunoreginablog

The pattern is Juno Regina by local designer Miriam Felton and it's been in my queue for a long, long time. Since it could be worn as either a stole or scarf, I knew Shelley would enjoy its versatility. The yarn, Geisha from Blue Moon Fiber Arts Raven series, is exceptionally soft, rich and elegant. Shelley loves black, purple, blue, green, pink…well, she loves most any color, and this yarn incorporated many of her favorites. 

Junointhezengarden

Getting started took at least 5 tries and after numerous episodes of frogging my brain finally figured out the pattern. After working the beginning lace diamond, the center of the shawl was easy enough, simple enough that I could knit and visit, knit and relax, knit and knit and knit. When it was long enough I worked the other lace end (no grafting!) and, while it took a few more frogging episodes, I made it to the end.

Junoonshelley

It felt like a big accomplishment, and for many reasons, it is very special to me. Shelley says it's special to her, too.

Shelleyandshawl
Pattern: Juno Regina by Miriam Felton (also on Knitty)
Yarn: Blue Moon Fiber Arts Geisha 70% Kid Mohair, 20% Mulberry Silk, 10% Nylon ~ Korppi
Needle: Addi Lace size 6
Time to Knit: September 20-October 9, 2009
Raveled HereRav_linkredyarnball

The Learning Process (Never Ends)

This is hard to admit, a hard tale the tell and the decision was hard to make. However, once that decision was made, I knew it was the right one. Relief flooded my mind and lifted a weight from my shoulders. Denial was strong and went on far too long, but after trying and trying and trying, it's best to admit when something isn't right.

Froggedpictureofpdvalsemakesmehappy

Instead of looking at this experience as a failure I've not only decided to move on (quickly), I've decided to look at what can be learned. The first thing to take into consideration when starting a sweater is to make sure the yarn and pattern know how to play well together. AND, if after 9", it becomes apparent they really aren't suitable, don't push it. A happy marriage is not made from "making do".

Another point is not to tackle a complicated pattern right after a major life event. Concepts are hard to understand and visualize. The will to succeed, ignoring the truth,  can take over the ability to see errors and keep the mind in denial far too long.

Abadsleevepickup Holesinmypdvalse

To make matters worse, the beauty of a yarn, and the fabric it creates, can camouflage many problems. This yarn is so luxurious and the thought of it caressing my body kept denial at bay. Even when it's obvious the yarn was soft enough to leave gaping holes during the transition between stitches, I did not take heed. So dear knitters, please pay attention when the yarn tells you it would be better suited to another project.

New Years Day (or before) the plan is to start a beautiful shawl to wrap around my neck and enhance the yarn. It will be a lasting, warm hug from Kim. This yarn is too exquisite to be part of a "failed knit".

Gratefully

Mysterysocknumbertwo

There are many reasons why I'm thankful I can knit. Knitting gives me endless hours of entertainment, has brought many friends into my life, and what it produces keeps me warm. Spending days and days recuperating might well have made me crazy if knitting hadn't been my constant companion.

Rhinebeckfriends2006

There are many reasons why I love the Internet. The top of the list would be friends. It's doubtful I would have crossed paths with many of the locals who have become BBFs. How on earth would I have ever met the friends who live across the county (or the world)? Fortunately, many of us have met face to face and the friendships have grown over years of blogging, emails and meet ups.

Myvieweverydayoftheyear

There are many reasons why I love living in Utah. The beauty of the mountains and the view I see everyday. Within minutes of leaving the house, we can be engulfed by the amazing canyons. I am grateful that Silver Lake is so near (20 minute) and I'm alive to walk around the boardwalk. At this point it will be next spring before it's cleared of snow, but I'll be one of the first to do so after the snow has melted.

Silverlakeinsummer