Thursday, December 24, 2015

The Best Christmas Gifts

I help the neighbors with the kids after summer school in June and other times.  I have grown close to the kids and sometimes I think my house is somewhat an extension of theirs.  I am still finding army men in my house after this summer.  They all came over today with gifts.  There was a container of homemade goodies, a wrapped gift and a home made card.  We went to the Dollar Tree at least once a week this summer and went through a lot of marshmallows, so my wrapped gift was a bag of marshmallows.  Jack wanted me to keep the bag til next June, but I told him it would not make it and we could go get more.  Bee made me a card with a picture of a cat, she is a very good artist. In it she thanked me for letting her come over after school and talking and just hanging out.  There are times when I hear the doorbell ring and I really don't want to deal with anyone, but it became apparent today that I am just being selfish because when she feels the need to come over she just needs to have someone who can teach her things, listen to her cares and concerns and know that I am here should she need me.  I have the best neighbors and hope they never move.  I also hope the kids will always feel welcome and that they continue to come over whenever they need to.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

What Are You Doing Up?

Usually around mid March I start to see some of my bulbs peeking through the dirt, well today my Naked Ladies are thinking maybe since it has been so nice they should peek through.  Silly girls it is not Spring yet even though the weather feels like it.  I hope they will come back up when Spring officially gets here next year.  Look below the large leaf and it seems as if 2 shelled pistachios are laying on the ground, those are the naked ladies coming up.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Twas The Night Before Christmas

'Twas the night before Christmas and all around me
Was unfinished knitting not under the tree.
The stockings weren't hung by the chimney with care
'cause the heels and the toes had not a stitch there.
The children were nestled all snug in their beds
but I had not finished the caps for their heads.
Dad was asleep; he was no help at all,
And the sweater for him was six inches too small.
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I put down my needles to see what was the matter.
Away to the window, I flew like a flash,
Tripped over my yarn and fell down with a crash.
The tangle of yarn that lay deep as the snow
Reminded me how much I still had to go.
Out on my lawn, I heard such a noise,
I thought it would wake both dad and the boys.
And though I was tired, my brain was a bit thick,
I knew in a moment, it must be Saint Nick.
But what I heard then left me perplexed-ed,
For not a name I heard was what I had expected
"move, Ashford; move, Lopi; move, Addie and Clover
Move, Reynolds; move, Starmore; move, Fraylic--move over"
"Paton, don't circle round; stand in line.
Come now, you sheep wool work just fine!
I know this is hard semi, it's just your first year,
I'd hate to go back to eight tiny reindeer."
I peered over the sill; what I saw was amazing,
Eight woolly sheep on my lawn all a'grazing.
And then, in a twinkle, I heard at the door
Santa's feet coming across the porch floor.
I rose from my knees and got back on my feet,
And as I turned round, Saint Nick, I did meet.
He was dressed all in wool from his head to his toe
And his clothes were handknit from above to below.
A bright Fairisle sweater he wore on his back,
and his toys were all stuffed in an Aran knit sack.
His cap was a wonder of bobbles and lace,
A beautiful frame for his rosy red face.
The scarf round his neck could have stretched for a mile,
And the socks peeking over his boots were Argyle.
The back of his mittens bore an intricate cable,
And suddenly on one I spied a small label.
SC was duplicate stitched on the cuff,
and I asked "Hey Nick, did you knit all this stuff?"
He proudly replied "Ho-ho-ho, yes I did,
I learned how to knit when I was a kid."
He was chubby and plump, a quite well-dressed old man,
And I laughed to myself for I'd thought up a plan,.
I flashed him a grin and jumped up in the air,
And the next thing he knew he was tied to a chair.
He spoke not a word, but looked in his lap
Where I'd laid my needles and yarn for a cap.
He quickly began knitting, first one cap then two;
For the first time I thought I'd really get through.
He put heels on the stockings and toes in some socks
While I sat back drinking Scotch on the rocks!!
So quickly like magic, his needles they flew,
That he was all finished by quarter to two.
He sprang for his sleigh when I let him go free,
And over his shoulder he looked back at me.
And I heard him exclaim as he sailed past the moon
"Next year start your knitting sometime around June

Tuesday, December 15, 2015


This summer while I was watching the neighbor kids they decided they wanted me to knit them something.  So we looked at many toy patterns and they settled on these little monsters.  The pattern is otto and I modified it for each one.  We went to Hobby Lobby and picked out the colors and I finally have them done.  They can be used as a pillow as well.

Wednesday, December 02, 2015


I am often asked why I knit socks.  Well let me see, because I can.  Yes I know you can buy socks at Wal-Mart for a lot less money however they are not wool or hand made or one of a kind and mine last for years.  If I get a hole I can easily repair it and wear it for more years to come.  Socks are my go to project when I need to calm down, just need to cast something on because and they are fun.  I recently found this article and it kind of says why those of us who knit socks do so.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

D20 Update

~ New photos of A.I.T. Decorah ~
These photos are from 23 November 2015. Terrie was at SOAR getting some eagle hours in and took these photos for us! Practice today was more out of the crate and sitting on the fist. Kay walked outside around the hawk building with Decorah on her fist. Thanks Terrie! Hope you all enjoy the day.

Monday, November 30, 2015

CFA Cole Slaw

I love my mom's cole slaw, KFC, CFA , Rock and Brew and Cashew's cole slaw.  However CFA is saying goodbye to their cole slaw.  This is so wrong and I hope they have not caved to some health group, because good cole slaw is hard to find.  So in case you can't live without it here is the recipe that was posted on Facebook.


Friday, November 27, 2015

Christmas Cactus

My Christmas Cactus is blooming.

Yes that is my fairy garden.  I was going to put it outside in my garden out front but we have a neighbor child, she is quite nutso and she steals stuff.  I did not want my fairy garden stolen so it sits underneath the bathroom window on the ledge with some of my plants.
I found this geranium so pitiful I brought it in, it was about 2" tall and look how well it has done in a week. It was hidden under my tomato plant.

Thursday, November 26, 2015


Proclamation of Thanksgiving
This is the proclamation which set the precedent for America's national day of Thanksgiving. During his administration, President Lincoln issued many orders similar to this. For example, on November 28, 1861, he ordered government departments closed for a local day of thanksgiving.

Sarah Josepha Hale, a 74-year-old magazine editor, wrote a letter to Lincoln on September 28, 1863, urging him to have the "day of our annual Thanksgiving made a National and fixed Union Festival." She explained, "You may have observed that, for some years past, there has been an increasing interest felt in our land to have the Thanksgiving held on the same day, in all the States; it now needs National recognition and authoritive fixation, only, to become permanently, an American custom and institution."

Prior to this, each state scheduled its own Thanksgiving holiday at different times, mainly in New England and other Northern states. President Lincoln responded to Mrs. Hale's request immediately, unlike several of his predecessors, who ignored her petitions altogether. In her letter to Lincoln she mentioned that she had been advocating a national thanksgiving date for 15 years as the editor of Godey's Lady's Book. George Washington was the first president to proclaim a day of thanksgiving, issuing his request on October 3, 1789, exactly 74 years before Lincoln's.

The document sets apart the last Thursday of November "as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise." According to an April 1, 1864, letter from John Nicolay, one of President Lincoln's secretaries, this document was written by Secretary of State William Seward, and the original was in his handwriting. On October 3, 1863, fellow Cabinet member Gideon Welles recorded in his diary how he complimented Seward on his work. A year later the manuscript was sold to benefit Union troops.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Harry Potter Yarn Club

On Halloween I signed up for the Harry Potter Yarn Club. I chose the fingering weight as I knew my niece would love to have more Harry Potter colorway socks.  The first club offering came today.  Owl Post is a very pretty color with some sparkly.  I decided to see if I could find Harry Potter themed designs and this owl design is from a sweater. So the Owl colorway gets an owl pattern for the first pair of socks. 

You will have to wait til next year to get your socks, I have a few Christmas gifts to finish and get through the end of the year.  Isn't the owl stitch marker the cutest?

Saturday, November 14, 2015

It's Almost Over

Here it is mid November and it was 70 today.  It was very nice out.  My tomato plant is full of blooms and finally I have tomatoes, it has never looked better.  My geranium and petunias are in full color and bloom and oh so gorgeous.  However next weekend we are to have a hard freeze.  Part of me says finally to kill the allergies but I don't want to lose the last of my color in the yard.  The plant season is almost over and I will enjoy them as long as I can.

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Loopy Academy Fabric Project One

One of the Loopy Academy Fabric Projects was to make a set of 4 placemats.  I don't use them but the girls often make a mess so I made them some placemats to put under their water dish and food dish.  On to the next project.  Ok I got a better picture sort of but I guess they are Bucky approved.

This is my Loopy Academy yarn project one a pillow.  I am re0decorating my guest room into white with red accents, so this pillow will go in there.  I took the dishcloth pattern that kind of looks like a poinsettia and added some rows at the end.

Isn't this little tree behind the neighbors pretty.  The Sugar Maple leaves are mostly on the ground but the rest are coloring up really nice this week.  The wind today is wreaking havoc on them.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Protecting the Eagles

We know several of the Decorah eagles have died from contact with power poles.  The power company around Decorah is retrofitting the poles with protection so hopefully this does not happen.  Thank you to the power company for doing this.

Grand Prize

I have participated in the FabShopHop for several years now.  There are quilt shops across the US that participate.  You have a list of shops, click on each one and find the bunny.  You then register that you found the bunny with your email address.  There are many prizes:  A sewing maching, grand prize, 1st, 2nd, 3rd prize and then gift certificates from some of the shops.  I have won a couple $10 gift certificates to use at stores but in August I won one of the grand prizes.  Happy Birthday to me.  I got my box today and OMG there are so many wonderful things in the box.  Those of you who know me well know I collect pencils and there is a colored pencil quilt.  You know I am gonna make one.

So here is what I won.

Thank you FabShopHop.

Cardinals and Angels

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Elmer Fudd

Today I went to this warehouse that is open right before Halloween to right before Christmas and their stuff is 70% off retail price.  Their Hallloween stuff was half off today, so you know I got some stuff.  I use snowmen to decorate with in January and look what I found, Is he not the cutest ever, his camo knitted sweater and boots and hat and a rifle.  I had to have him. 

Sunday, October 18, 2015

D20 Update

~ Tail feather update 18 October 2015 ~
Ambassador-in-Training Decorah actually has 9 of 10 tail feathers that are growing... these feathers are not done growing, but this is by far the best we've seen them look!

Saturday, October 17, 2015


This is the view from the camera this morning at Decorah.  This is one reason I watch the nest because in all the ugliness in the world now, this is so peaceful, calming, and beautiful. 

Monday, October 12, 2015

Fall Colors

 I have vibrant red gold leaved trees in the fall in my yard and neighborhood.  I love the colors, they put red glows throughout the house when the sun it out. 

I have no idea what he was doing but here he is, look up.  Mr Squirrel getting a bird's eye view.

Saturday, October 03, 2015

Mrs Wilson's Knitting Circle

Today's lecture was about the voluntary aids.  These were women from the upper middle class and elite who had servants and never learned how to do the basics.  They were given 6 months of training which including learning to cook, clean and bandage.  They were then sent overseas to be used where they were needed.  They worked 6 months and had 7 days off.  They paid for their uniforms but their travel and other expenses were paid for.  We saw a picture of the hospital and what it looked after it was bombed.  If something or someone had the red cross on them they were to be safe territory and not be bombed or killed.  One of the difficulties they had to deal with was diseases no one had ever seen before.  Many neighborhoods and towns male population was wiped out due the men not coming back home.
Each of these lectures provide us with a look at WWI and those involved.  Plus we get a free pattern of the times that the Red Cross provided to those who were knitting for the soldiers.

There is a PBS mini series called Crimson Fields that talks about the aids and what happened during the war.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

RIP Ozzie

CROW - Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife, Inc.'s photo.
CROW - Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife, Inc.
1 hr
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Ozzie, the bald eagle, co-star of the Southwest Florida Eagle Cam. Ozzie passed away last night at CRO...W due to complications from his recent injuries that included multiple severe lacerations and a broken toe in each foot. Ozzie was brought to CROW for a second time on Sunday, September 27, after he was found weak and injured in a North Fort Myers backyard. He arrived at CROW late at night in critical condition, unable to stand and fighting septicemia (a bacterial blood infection). It is highly likely these injuries were sustained from a fight with another bald eagle near the nest that was documented on the Southwest Florida Eagle Cam Facebook page. It was also reported that he had been entangled in barbwire.
A necropsy will be performed on Ozzie at the Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study (SCWDS) at The University of Georgia and we will share those results with you when they become available. We would like to thank everyone for their support and unwavering belief in CROW during Ozzie’s rehabilitation and recent stay. Your endless words of encouragement carried the CROW staff through challenging times.

I did not watch this nest but I did follow them on facebook.  Earlier Ozzie was in rehab and recently released.  He wen to claim his nest and wife back and got into a fight and back to rehab.  Poor Ozzie.  RIP and soar with the thermals with the Decorah eagles who have gone before you.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Garden Life

I never know what I might see in my yard.  Every day is a new sight.  I have this huge hummer that likes to sit in a tree and preen herself.  You have to look towards the top of the first picture and to the right, she kind of blends in.  I have never seen one this big before.  Mr Cardinal came for a bite.  And the mushroom, well I think I hear Smurfs earlier.  And this dragonfly is a gorgeous color, I spent a couple days chasing him around the yard before I finally got a picture of him.


Saturday, September 19, 2015

D20 Update

9-18-15 ~ Update on Ambassador Decorah
Kay reports that Decorah is still doing a fairly normal molt. His two favorite places to perch are on a stump and the bow perch. There is no new photo of Decorah as the staff is still keeping minimal contact to avoid any stress during his feather molt, but he does still "chitter" chat when Kay talks to him. Look below for a video of Decorah chatting with Kay from May, 2015.

Always a favorite video …. Decorah chattering with Kay, May 2015
Complete history updates on Decorah while at SOAR

Monday, September 14, 2015

Crafters Secret

No I have no secrets to share with you but I do have a yarn review.  If you have a Hobby Lobby you know they are only carrying their brand of yarn.  I found a brand called Crafters Secret which is almost identical to Red Heart.  Their dishcloth yarn is just like Sugar and Cream.  I don't like the idea that I had to pay $2.29 for a skein of dishcloth yarn but you would pay that much for one in the store and it would not last forever.  I used the Sinkmate dishcloth pattern which you can find on Ravelry. If you dont' like I-cord don't go there because you start with 76 rows of I-cord and pick up the middle and knit til you are out of stitches. 

You get 57 grams or 95 yards or 86 meters for $2.29.  I used 37 grams for the Sinkmate, so I have 20 grams to use with another color. I do have some gold that I am going to put the rest of the skein with.

I like Peaches and Crème better because I find it to be a softer yarn, prettier colors and much cheaper, you can still find it at Walmart for $1.47.  I think Sugar and Cream is the same expensive price now, so if you want to make dishcloths and only have a Hobby Lobby it will work just fine.  My only complaint is the price. 


If you look at the first blog on my list on the right hand side you will see Mandalas for Marinke.  I never knew of Marinke or her work until she was gone.  She took her life because of depression.  I can not begin to even try to imagine what it must be like to live with demons in your head that won't leave.  This project was started in her honor.  I chose to participate because this is not something that can be fixed with surgery or a pill, it needs to have attention.   Look at the many shootings that have been by mentally impaired individuals.  I chose these colors because they remind me of the sun.  I always feel better on a sunny day even if it is the middle of winter and the temps are in the single digits.  Sunshine just makes you feel good.  Check out the blog to look at the mandalas and the beauty of their work.  A mandala can be simple or detailed but like snowflakes and people no two are the same.