Monday, November 12, 2007

Oh what a "beautiful " Monday....

It's Monday again - and it's almost over. And what did I do today? Well, I went to Weight Watchers - gained a half pound. Nice way to start my day. I can't complain, I lost 3.4 pounds last week. Must be water retention - who knows - could be poop retention. I've stayed pretty much on course today.

I spoke with my parents this morning. Yesterday Mom was upset because she couldn't find her Florida phone book. I was driving home from the grocery store and told her I would help try to find her friends on the Internet. The one, it turned out, lives in Atlanta. I did manage to find her number and then Mom was able to get the other one's number from her. After our conversation, I remembered another conversation we had a couple of months ago about some nice folks in Buffalo, NY who were are neighbors. I told them then that I thought most of them had passed away. But, I forgot about it, until last night, and then I began my "research." Luckily for me, the Buffalo News keeps death records for 10 years. My last trip to Buffalo was in June 2000. Sadly enough, I typed in several names and each came back marked deceased. It was sad for me, too. I knew all these folks - grew up with their children. The most recent death was that of my brother's old friend, Charlie. His mom, Marilyn, died just a month ago. Seems that in reading the obit, Charlie had also lost his wife and a daughter. So, I called my parents with the bearings of sad news. They take it in stride. Just two weeks ago, I found out that my cousin, Ken, had passed away in a mall in San Diego - several hours before his mom, my Aunt Betty, had to be evacuated from her home in Rancho Bernardo, where the flames of the fires were destroying house after house. She was spared - her house was not damaged at all. But, she lost her youngest son at the age 55.

The second Monday of the month is always Knitting at the Library. It's a wonderfully diverse group who meet, eat lunch and knit. What more could you ask for? There is a wonderful little restaurant in the library called Provence. Delicious tuna and chicken salad, different sandwiches and if you're not worried about calories, the desserts are to die for So, I go in a drool a little.

Monday evening knitting group is at Angel Hair Yarns. We had a small group tonight, but we always have such fun and lots of laughter. I made a darling, dark green hooded vest for either Jake or Ruthie. Also bought a red, yellow and blue yarn to make another. Both will need zippers - which I purchased today - and I will take them to an alterations place in Brentwood to have the zippers sown in. Photos will be coming soon.

Monday, November 5, 2007

My trip to Denver

I just spent the most wonderful six days in Denver taking care of my granddaughter, Ruthie. What a little doll! She was such a good girl while her mommy and daddy were vacationing in Hawaii. And what fun we had! Grandma Kate, Jon's mom, was there until Wednesday. I arrived on Tuesday. A 19 month old sure can keep you busy - it was pretty much non-stop.

Wednesday, after our trip to take Grandma Kate to the airport, we stopped at WalMart on the way home. Oh dear, I should have known not to take Ruthie down the toy aisles, but what are grandmas for if they can't spoil the kids a bit. We ended up getting a really cute Fischer Price chair with a side table and lamp that has a story book on it. It plays music and does counting and alphabet too. To go along with that, we got the cutest Leap Frog train - all the cars connect by magnets and it, too, is a learning toy. Ruthie loves sitting in her chair - it's just her size.

On Thursday, I took Ruthie to the zoo. This was her second time in a few days, but of course, she didn't mind. It was a beautiful day and we spent over three hours walking around and looking at all the animals. We rode on the train and the carousel and ate animal cookies. I am certain that Ruthie's favorite area was a huge room with a step where you could go up to the glass and watch the Orangutans and the Gorillas. She was fascinated by what was going on and with the step. Up and down, up and down - for an hour! It wasn't easy getting her out of there.

On Friday, we went to the Denver Children's Museum. Oh my goodness, this place was wonderful. Ruthie's curiosity and sense of adventure is fabulous to watch. She tried out everything. The museum has different rooms with different activities. In one room, there is a veterinary office with stuffed dogs and cats and "medical equipment." Here is our "Dr. Ruth"!

We also saw a real fire engine there. Here is Ruthie - the fireman...
Last but, not least, Ruthie had her first painting experience. To my surprise, she is quite the little artist and here is her first painting, which I framed for her mommy and daddy.

And here is Ruthie's framed masterpiece:
I can't finish off the blog today without a few more photos:
Ruthie is the sweater and hat that I made for her!

Gertrude aka Gertie


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The big wait for the Sprint bill is over....

After all my fussing and fuming, worry and even more gray hair than I already had, the dreaded Sprint bill appeared online this morning. From the look of the minutes used and the fact that they never charged any to PCS to PCS, I was certain that this bill would bankrupt me for sure and then how on earth would I be able to buy more yarn. God Forbid!! I was shocked - to say the least! The bill was $167.94 = even less than the previous month. Hooray!! Now I can buy more yarn!!

Monday, October 22, 2007

A Great Evening at Angel Hair Yarns

Tonight was simply wonderful!!! Thanks so much to Andrea and Pam who hosted a fabulous evening with Cheryl Schaefer of the famous Schaefer Yarn Company. Cheryl is a delight - her stories are so interesting and very amusing. I laughed so much I finally had to go pee or there would have been a puddle on the floor. Cheryl arrived in Nashville not feeling too well, but thanks to Tina Meares (hope I spelled your name correctly) and her husband who is a doctor, Cheryl was feeling much better and her voice was pretty strong.
Despite the heavy rains, Angel Hair was pretty crowded and I think we all enjoyed ourselves - especially being able to stay and shop afterward. That is always a joy!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Maybe I need to talk about my knitting projects...

I haven't talked about my knitting projects in a long time. Let's see....can I remember all of them? I've been knitting a cute little black and pink Minnow Knits sweater for my granddaughter, Ruthie. I ran into a snag - ran out of yarn that I purchased in Rhode Island. Lucky for me, they had the dye lots and sent me some more. I got the yarn several weeks ago, but it's still in the bag. I have a couple of scarves going. One is a Brioche Rib with Schaefer Esperanza - color way is Kermie. It's beautiful. I made another one just like it in Edith Piaf. At The Knaughty Knitter, we are doing a "hat along"- it's the King Harald Street Hat from The Art of Fair Isle Knitting. We are using Jamieson Shetland Wool. This is a fun project and very addicting. I've started a Wallaby Sweater for my grandson, Jake. And then there is the cardigan from Sirdar. It's intarsia - which I am making for my granddaughter, Alyssa. And the several pair of socks that are started. Oh dear. Where will I find time??

The week from hell!!

This really has been a more than bizarre week. The Sprint saga goes on. I've given up trying to find out any more. When the bill comes out next week, we'll just have to work it out. They are in the wrong, that's for certain. On top of the billing issue, a couple of weeks ago, I broke my "bluetooth." Not thinking clearly about it, I went to the Sprint store on Franklin Rd. in that little shopping center where Threaded Bliss is. I thought maybe I could just get the part for the ear that broke, but no, I ended up getting a brand new one. It wasn't the same kind, but I was assured that this one was one of the best. Within a few days, the silly thing kept falling off my ear. I was really afraid of losing it. Also, I had a very difficult time pairing it with my phone, but thanks to my friend, Catherine, it finally did happen. Aggravated with the headset, I went back to the store on Tuesday and explained the problem. Because I didn't have the box - yes! I was dumb and somehow it ended up in the trash last Friday - they refused to take it back. He did agree to let me have another one just like it. So, I took it and off I went. Don't you know - the same thing happened - it wouldn't stay tight to my head. Meanwhile, I still had the broken original headset, so I took it yesterday to Sprint store in Cool Springs where I thought I had bought it. Turns out, it was still under warranty and they gave me a new one. I went back to the other store and asked for a refund, but was refused. Talk about MAD!!! It wasn't pretty and now I think I should contact the BBB and report the him. Fair warning - there are only two corporate Sprint stores in the area - Cool Springs and Green Hills. All the others are just "fun phone stores."

To add fuel to the fire, last Friday, Quicken locked me out of my Wachovia bank account. Couldn't download or pay bills. I called the 24 hour bank help number and was told there was nothing I could do until Tuesday after 2 pm. The horrors of it all. Most of yesterday I was out, so I called last night and got a gal that tried to help me. After about 45 minutes, we did manage to get a download which showed I had a balance of negative 46 thousand dollars. (I don't think so - especially since it couldn't even be that to the positive) She told me that I would have to call Quicken today at 8 am EST. Why did I know that this would be a futile effort? First call - Indian guy who's English was very hard to understand. He helped for a bit - then the call suddenly disconnected. Call number two - different Indian guy - I asked for someone who spoke English - he said he did speak English -yeah right. He was better, helped me, put me on hold, and again the call disconnects. Call number 3 - oh yes, again an Indian - must be they outsource to India - sure enough - after a bit - call disconnects. By then I was close to being a raving maniac. I called Wachovia again. New gal this time - so nice and patient with me. We got the problem solved. Not a negative balance - everything was there and normal. A bit later, I tried the download again - and was locked out again. I thought about calling again, but then thought - why not wait until after 2 pm and see if that makes a difference. Yes it did - and that's a story that ended well.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Cell Phones

We all rely on our cell phones. I am furious with Sprint. Every week or so, I check on my minutes usage. On Friday, to my shock and surprise, it showed that I've used almost 3000 minutes since September 23. OMG!! No way!! The thought of the bill about sent me into apoplexy. According to Sprint, Barry had used 1150 minutes himself. Yikes! Who the hell was he talking to???? After a couple of phone calls and getting nowhere fast, I spent the rest of the evening being furious. I decided to call again yesterday morning. The first person I spoke to was no help. He transferred me to another person. I kept asking for a printout of the minutes used so far. They refused, saying it was not available. I don't think so. This time, after 10 minutes of arguing, I was transferred to the finance department. Whoever answered spoke in Spanish. I kept telling him I don't speak Spanish. Finally got a woman, Sunny C., who spoke English - sort of. We kept up the argument and finally, she put me on hold for what seemed like an eternity with horrible music. Apparently, the code for Sprint to Sprint phones had disappeared from my plan. In the end, they sent me 10 pages of calls that were made - only because I am "such a good customer." I saved the list to a word document, highlighted all the calls that I was charged for and shouldn't have been and sent them back to Sprint. Here is the email reply that I received after sending this email:

Dear Sunny C,

Thank you so much for all you've done. However, having scanned over the
list that you sent me, the majority of those calls are PCS to PCS. I hope
those calls will be "billed" as such. There is no way that I will pay for
free calls ever. Please advise if the calls will be adjusted.

Dear Barbara Bandel,

Thank you for writing back.

I apologize for any inconvenience that has been caused due to the PCS to PCS minutes. I noticed that the account is showing about the usage of the PCS to PCS minutes. Be assured that it has not been deducted from the actual anytime minutes and also it will not be not be deducted from the anytime minutes. You can keep this e-mail as confirmation.

Thank you again for emailing us, it was a pleasure serving you. Please feel free to write back if you have any further questions. I will be more than happy to assist you.

Diana D
"Where our customers come first!"

This just blows my mind. I did write them back, but haven't had a reply yet. Tomorrow is another day.....

Computer woes!

This has been the week of computer problems. No sooner did I get my new laptop, Barry's computer went down. It has happened before, but somehow, he was able to recover. He brought out his laptop and that died too. Not too thrilled about what was happening, he went down the basement and brought up my old computer. And that crashed also. He wasn't a happy bunny, he had photos to upload to his website (, so I let him install stuff on my computer. So far so good. Mine is fine. He has tried a few things with his computer, but as of this morning, nothing had happened. Tonight - all of a sudden - his computer came back to life and he is now re-installing XP and hopefully this will cure the problems.

Meanwhile, I wanted to install something on my laptop yesterday that I had trouble with, so I spent three hours Best Buy with the Geek Squad. It was a long time to be standing, but I got things taken care of.

After all that, I rewarded myself with some delicious king crab legs from Costco. Yummy!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

I've got a new toy!!

YES!!! I finally have my own laptop! It's small and new and I can take it everywhere. No more slow hotel computers for me. It's a Toshiba with Windows Vista. Guess I need to get my PC upgraded or just call Dell and get a new one. Barry helped me get my files shared and this new one on our network. But I'm so proud of myself! I managed to import my contacts from Incredimail which are csv files and convert them to Windows Mail. That saved me many hours of having to retype them all over again. Now I'll attempt to get all my Real Arcade games reloaded and I'll be a happy camper!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

My manic roller coaster day

I'm calling this day my "manic roller coaster day." It was a bit crazy. I had a 10 am nail appointment in Bellvue. Okay - that's about 25 miles from my house. Shouldn't of done this, but I so wanted a bagel, which made me stop at Bruegger's on Harding Road. That wonderful bacon and egg on a pumpernickel bagel about did my stomach in. I wasn't sure I would make it down the road - my belly hurt that bad. Oh well - that, too, did pass! Had my nails done and my eyebrows and decided to go to Best Buy. I've really been wanting a laptop. The closest store was at the new Charlotte West Shopping Center - not really on my beaten path, since I was eventually heading to Brentwood. I bought my computer - it's a Toshiba - very nice - web cam and all. I was very excited. Then I broke my blue tooth for my cell phone, so off to Sprint. I actually bought it way back in Cool Springs, but took it last week to Green Hills to be fixed. Again, not on my way, so I went to the new office in Brentwood. Oh well, what's another $59? Had to get a new one. It was already almost 1 and was supposed to be at our Tuesday knitting group at Brentwood United Methodist Church. Time out for a light lunch - drive-thru at Chick Fil-A for a salad, fruit cup and diet coke. When I got to the church I was already on "overdrive" and plugged in the new headset to charge it for an hour, after which I could pair it with the phone. Naturally, I couldn't do it. Lucky for me, my friend, Catherine, came to my rescue and we got it going. I couldn't concentrate on my knitting at all - so just as I was leaving, the people from Best Buy called that I could pick up my computer ( I had extra RAM put in). It was about 3 and I was going to our Meet Up knitting group later on, so I went home first. Talk about opposite directions. And the traffic was not good either. I checked email, turned on the lights, at grilled cheese and honeydew for dinner and took off for Charlotte Pike. I was chicken about going the fastest way on I40 - so I drove through Nashville. Bad idea - I shouldn't be so chicken. It took me forever to get there. Then off I went again to Sweetwater's Cafe. At least I took a couple of different scarves to knit on - I couldn't make mistakes that way.

I was totally trashed when I got home, but the new computer is so cool that it kept me going for awhile. But, tomorrow is another day. I'm like a little kid with a new toy!

Now I can't keep my head up - so goodnight!!!!!

Monday, October 8, 2007

My Folks!

I thought today I would blog a bit about my parents. They live in a retirement community in Elmhurst, IL - just west of Chicago. For most of their lives, until their mid-60's, the lived in the Buffalo, NY area. They spent many winters in FL to escape the bitter cold, but one day decided that the best thing to do was move their permanently. It was great for awhile, living in a beautiful condo in Lauderhill, but then, the inevitable started happening. The friends began to pass away and living there was depressing. By then, my brother had married again and a year later, a new baby came on the scene. Since Mom and Dad spent most of time in FL while Rick's kids and mine were growing up, they only saw their six grandchildren at most twice a year. For a few years, it was too much for them to be down in FL in the summer, so they were spending summers in Oak Park, IL right near to where my brother lived in River Forest. Jori, the seventh grandchild was born in 1997 and my folks have been really close with her.

My parents have always been pretty active. They are avid bridge players and my dad loves his sports. The Bears and the Cubbies, especially.

In the past few years, Mom and Dad are no longer able to travel. Mom's eyesight is poor and Dad has Parkinson's. Although he isn't shaky, it still slows him down. He's had some heart problems and internal bleeding from an ulcer, but on the whole for two elderly people who are 86 and almost 87, they are doing fantastically well.

This past Saturday night, my brother had four tickets to the Cubs game. It's hard for the folks to go - all those steps - but Rick and my nephew, Aaron, took them. About five minutes into the game, a woman seated behind Mom, got up with her big cup of beer in her hand to take a picture with the camera she was trying to use in her other hand, and spilled the entire $6.00 worth of beer down the side of Mom's head, in her hair, and just soaked her blouse. It scared Mom - but felt good, since it was about 90 degrees at Wrigley Field that night. According to my brother, Mom went a bit ballistic at first, but she calmed down and the lady and her friend went and got wads of paper towels from the bathroom to try to soak up the mess. My dad got some of it too - but not nearly as bad. My brother had called me last night to tell me about the incident and it sort of struck both of funny. It brought back a memory of another Cubs game - maybe 15 years ago. We stopped at a place called Jake's to get milkshakes and food for the game. Rick bought each of us a bag of peanuts - my daughter's were there with us - and my brother told the kids it was all right to eat the peanuts with the shells too. I told my two, "NO"! A little while later, Aaron barfed up his chocolate milkshake and all the peanuts on the woman in front of him. Luckily it hit her leather jacket. Could have been her hair. She didn't even realize what had happened until we tapped her on the head. How embarrassing and we had a heck of a mess.

Here is a photo of my parents that I took last month at Mom's birthday celebration:
That's my daughter, Jen, who will be giving Mom and Dad their 4th great grandchild next Spring. I just hope I look and great as my parents do in 26 years when I'm their age!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

A "don't miss chic-flick

I don't go to the movies often, but my friend, Sally, emailed me last night to see I wanted to go and see "The Jane Austen Book Club." We both enjoyed it immensely. It's playing at One Hundred Oaks - a definite movie to keep in mind.

As I write, Barry is putting together another bookcase for me. Can you guess what kind of books are going to find a home there? Knitting ones of course. I ran out of room in my other bookcase. These books have a habit of multiplying - kind of like yarn. But, we won't talk about my stash.... but then last week, I had to go and buy three big plastic tubs that I could pack towels in - ones we don't use. I have three linen closets in my house. One that I emptied now holds yarn. Does that count the 16 cubicles with color boxes that hold yarn? Or the three trunks? Or the three extra cubicle boxes? Or the ??? bags of yarn??? I think I'd better stay around for a long time. Sometimes I scare myself! Ah-h-h - the joys of retirement!!

Friday, October 5, 2007

It's been way too long....

I can't believe I haven't posted in such a long time - seems like there are never enough hours in the day to do everything. While I was in a Providence I had lots of spare minutes.

Knitting is my favorite activity. I belong to many different groups and love each of them and the friends that I've made. I wish, though, that I could get myself to finish each project that I start. There is some sort of "high" derived from starting something new. I learned that in the 26 years I spent doing counted cross stitch.

I have made progress - I finished a Wallaby Sweater for my granddaughter, Ruthie.

My daughter, Jen and I met in Chicago on September 15 for my mom's 86th birthday. Great weekend - Ruthie was the star for sure. And Jen is expecting again. Hooray!! My family is growing.

Last weekend, I was in NC visiting my grandchildren, Alyssa and Jake. They grow way too fast. I made Alyssa a brown and pink striped sweater and vest for Jake. Unfortunately, I never did get to take any photos of them wearing their new duds.

This is Alyssa - age 4-1/2

And Jake - age 13 months

We took the children to a wonderful animal park in Maiden, NC called Buffalo Beal's. Here a few of my favorite photos that I took there.

And one more - this is Oliver, the kitty, who lives next door to my children. He was so interesting and friendly.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Wow - it's hot!!

Good heavens - it's hot in Nashville. I'm back from my doggy sitting in Providence, and I really do miss Petals. But, it's so unbelievably hot here that I'm glad I don't have a dog.

It's been a busy week. Knitting at the Library on Monday is always fun. Then SnB at Angel Hair Yarns was super too. Yesterday afternoon was knitting at the church and then on to Stillwaters Cafe. Now there was a perfect place to knit. We had a huge crowd and everyone had a good time.

Today is unbearable. I went to Publix and my car's thermostat read 106. That is just way too hot. Thank goodness the humidity is low.

I've been working on a precious sweater for my granddaughter, Alyssa, which involves intarsia. It's not bad - I'm enjoying it. Too many projects going though, but that's me. I was on the heel flap of my socks made out of Maizy when Miss Petals pulled the needle out of my knitting. I was doing magic loop and the pattern involves yarn overs - so that entire sock had to be ripped out. I tried, but could not get the stitches back on.

Tomorrow is our knitting group at The Knaughty Knitter - a nice way to spend a Thursday morning.

Let's hope this heat breaks soon - we need rain.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Back to warmer weather

It's a perfect day here in Providence. Temps in the upper 70's - very low humidity. I can deal with that.

Petals went to Poochies this morning for her bath. I went to pick her up and she had peed on her feet and had to go back in the tub again. She's something else. Mike's mom and I went out to eat last night and I told her to come in when we got back. Unlike me, Dianne is not a dog lover. Petals was awful - she barked, jumped and was just crazy. I managed to give Dianne some tomatoes from the garden and get her out without her getting mauled. Not too much later, I discovered that Petals left me a rather "large gift" in the living room. I've tried so hard with this dog - I think she needs boot camp training.

I'll be anxious to see how she behaves towards me when they are back in the house.

Friday, August 10, 2007


This is the color of my lips!! (he he) It was 56 degrees here today. It's supposed to go up to 83 tomorrow. Now even that sounds better!

It's Cold and Rainy, But a Good Day

I'm not complaining, because I know the heat I will be returning to on Sunday -but damn! it's cold here for a Southerner. It's been raining all morning and a cool rain to boot. Taking Miss Petals out in this is not much fun.

I checked my mail about 10:30 and found an email from Karen -the owner of Fresh Purls - which is a LYS right here in East Providence not to far from my daughter's house. She asked me to make sure I came by before I leave for Nashville because she had something for me. It's a really nice shop, lots of nice people, and there SnB on Wednesday night was great fun. I had planned to go over there and hang out for a while and when I got there, Karen gave me a skein of Sunshine sock yarn. It's color way is Surf -really pretty. That was so nice. I had purchased a bunch of yarn there and took a class in how to make two socks at the same time on two circulars. It was nice to find a knit shop home away from home.

I can't believe that in about 48 hours I will be sitting in the airport waiting to board my flight. It will be so nice to go home.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Windfall at the yarn shops

OMG - two fantastic yarn shops in one day. After I finished the laundry and did my ironing, I took a drive to Wickford - which is down on Narragansett Bay. It's a cute little town with a very nice yarn shop called And the Beadz Go On. It isn't a huge place, but they have a very nice selection. A very nice lady, named Barbara, helped me. I got 3 skeins of Nashua Ivy and a pattern to make a scarf. Also got some Nashua superwash and buttons to make a sweater for Ruthie, along with some Minnow Knits patterns. I told them I was from Nashville and wandering around RI. They suggested I drive to Tiverton to another shop called Sakonnet Purls. I drove over several bridges - through Newport, Jamestown, Portsmouth and Melville. It seemed like a forever ride and I was never too sure I was going the right way. They had done a mapquest for me and printed it so I had some directions to go by. I did find the shop and trust me, I thought I had died and gone to heaven. It was in a large house - and more yarn than I have ever seen in one shop. Louise, the owner, designs many of the patterns - I bought two of them. I also got some Bazic Wool, some King Tut Cotton, and a couple of skeins of Encore Chunky. I got directions from Louise how to get to I195 and found the exit for Seekonk where I had left the doggy. It took me a while to find the place since I went in on the opposite side of town. She was very happy to see her grandma - even though she spent a good part of her day in the pool. Tomorrow she'll be going for a bath.

I do believe I've done enough damage in RI as far as yarn buying goes. I've been to six shops and made purchases at five of them. I will rest from here on in until I go home on Sunday. I can't wait.

Free Day

Petals has gone to daycamp!! I'm free for the day. And what am I doing? Well, first of all I drove her up to the daycare in Seekonk, MA. I had planned to go to Boston, but my enthousiasm gave out. So, I drove home - as I say, via Duluth. Yes, I got lost. Missed the I95 exit -so I took US1. Interesting ride...I finally found my way. I figured it was still early, so I would do laundry and get that out of the way. Had trouble with the washer on the towels load - but I've learned to remedy that. Just call me the "Whirlpool Repair Lady." Ironing is now done and I'm waiting to put the towels in the dryer. Then I'm off to Wickford. It's pretty there and they have a yarn shop. It's on the Narragansett Bay and it's cool today, so the breeze down there should be lovely. I'll take some knitting and find a nice place to sit.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

It's been a long, long time!

My goodness, it has been a long time since I've posted on my blog. And so much has happened.

I turned 60 last month - a new decade has begun. Hooray! I'm a senior citizen for most places. How exciting is that!! It does help when you go to the movies at night. I had a wonderful birthday - lots of celebration with all my dear friends. Wonderful chocolate cake made by Catherine and her daughter, Rachael. Laurie brought delicious cupcakes. We all had sugar highs that day. My children and grandchildren all came to Nashville to celebrate too. We had a fabulous weekend.

I've been in Providence, RI since last Monday doggy sitting my grand-dog, Petals - a soft-coated Wheaton Terrier who was none too happy to meet me. She was a bit of a handful the first few days while Karen and Mike were still here. She wouldn't let me move around the house without charging after me and barking like crazy. I held my ground - and now we are best buds. She had been having accidents - but so far - today was the only one and thank goodness they have wood floors. We go on long walks twice a day and have been to the dog park a couple of times. Only problem is - the park is in Barrington and it's quite a ride and I keep getting lost.

Knitting has kept me sane - I've managed to visit four different yarn shops. One was peculiar - all the yarn was in plastic bags - nothing to fondle. And no sock yarn. Another was in an old mill building - it was okay. I drove to Woonsocket to another this afternoon - and got lost, of course. Finally found it - but it was three flights up. Not exactly handicapped friendly, which is what I told the nice guy who owns the shop. He laughed and said I should be happy to know I'm not handicapped. The nicest shop was one that is closest to my daughter's house. I'm going to their SnB tomorrow night.

Hope everyone is doing well.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

It's Time

It is so time to go home. I've been here too long. Thank goodness I have my granddaughter, Alyssa's birthday party to look forward to on Saturday.

Today was sort of draggy. I had an appointment with my financial guy at 2:00 and that went well. Yippee!! I can afford to carpet my upstairs and my steps. That is exciting. I'm working on the Wopper Topper hat - got that pattern at Haus of Yarn. It's so cute. Don't know which grandbaby will get this one - but one time making it is enough.

I went over to say goodbye to my friend, Dolores. They are leaving tomorrow for SC. It's Will's birthday - I got him this keyring that you can attach to your belt loop that says - Old Fart. He loved it. What elsc an you get for an 83 year old?

Fun experience this morning - I went to the laundermat. Yuck! Hadn't been to one of those in ages - but I figured it was the fastest way to get my dirty clothes washed and dried. It wasn't, but I got a lot of knitting done. I also went to Border's and Barnes and Noble today - those coupons that came in my email this morning... had to spend them.

I did read a really good book this week - The Glass Castle. It was one of those you can't put down.

Well, guess I head back up to my room and watch a bit of TV and see if I can finish the hat tonight.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Wednesday in Raleigh

And it's Wednesday!!! Yesterday I spent with my friend, Dolores. We went out to lunch at Olive Garden - yum - ate way too much salad. Last night we had our Tuesday night craft group at my friend, Boni's. Four of us - and we laughed so hard, we cried. Just like old times.

I am going to meet my friend, Rose, in a few minutes at the synagogue. She'll be there to help with the mailing of the monthly bulletin. I hope I don't get roped in to helping - I really need to sit and knit on the "big whopper" hat I'm making for Ruthie. It's way too cute. I've finished Jake's hoodie - except for the never=ending I-Cord. I'm working on it - sort of. Rose and I are planning to go out to dinner - then I will go and play with her two pugs - Max and Jakie and get my doggy fix.

Nashville seems like a million miles away - wish I were home.

Monday, April 23, 2007

It's Monday

It's been an interesting day. I got up about 6:00 - can't get off Central Time - and knitted on my sock for awhile. Figured it was pointless to hang around the hotel room, so I got ready and drove to Cary - a suburb of Raleigh - to go to ToysRUs to find a basketball hoop and stand for my granddaughter, Alyssa. Got there at 9:15 - store didn't open until 10, but there was Kohl's across the road, so I went and did some damage there. Two outfits for Jake, two dresses for Alyssa, and of course, two for Ruthie. I found what I was looking for at the toy store and then headed to the yarn shop. Oh my goodness - I wish I had had my camera with me. That shop was a disaster. It's an old and very rundown house. There is so much yarn - most in plastic bags that I tried hard not to trip over. The very wrinkled rug in one room almost got me. Finding anything was near to impossible. I did get two 16" Inox circular needles, two sock patterns - one to send to my daughter, Karen - and a skein of sock yarn. It was all too much for me. The lady there wasn't terribly helpful, but she did wind the yarn. Then I drove back to Raleigh and went to the other yarn shop. Oh dear - it wasn't great - but I knew that. Sock yarn was almost non-existent. I asked about it and was told that there isn't a great demand. Surprising - because socks are so big in Nashville. I did find a Minnow knits pattern that I will send to Karen - it's a little girl's sweater and one for a dog - and the dog shown is a Soft-coated Wheaton like her dog, Petals. She'll love it!! And she can knit it, too!!!

I got a surprise phone call from my Jen's mother in-law. She left here yesterday, got home after a bumpy plane ride to Minneapolis and never bothered opening her suitcase until this morning. She discovered that she had left half her clothes here in the hotel dresser drawer. Luckily, that room was still empty and I was able to retrieve her stuff which I will mail off to her tomorrow.

This afternoon, I took my good friend, Dolores, to the Gynecologist - my old doctor from when I lived here - she hadn't been in 12 years. She was scared - but all went well. Tomorrow we're having lunch out and then to our old stitch group.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Hi from Raleigh

Hello from Raleigh, NC!! I'm here for the week to visit old friends from the 26 years that I lived here. But my main reason for coming was because all my children and grandchildren were here for my Ruthie's baby naming which we had at the synagogue my kids grew up in. That was at 9 this morning. Friday evening was fantastic. I got to keep Ruthie for the night in the hotel while her mommy and daddy went to a wedding rehearsal party - my daughter, Jen, was the matron of honor. My son in-law, Jon's mom came in from Minneapolis, and she and I took Ruthie out to eat and then to the Temple for the worship service. I worked there for 10 years prior to moving to Nashville, so I know most of the families in the congregation. Everyone made a big fuss over Ruthie and of course, we grandmas ate that up. Ruthie was good - she loved the singing and "sang" along too. What was really funny was when the rabbi read in Hebrew, Ruthie seemed to think it was her job to help. We finally had to take her out for awhile. The best was after the service there is a social time. The noise level was quite high and I looked down and there was Ruthie in her stroller with her fingers in her ears. She didn't take them out until we got out the door. We all got together yesterday at Pullen Park, which is in the center of Raleigh. They have a great carousel and we took all the kids on it. Alyssa, who will be 4 on Wednesday, Ruthie, who is 1, and Jake is 7 months. They loved it. Of course, we had two grandmas and a daddy holding the kids - Ruthie even rode the up and down horse. I should have put Jake on one too - he seemed a bit bored on the non-moving one. At one point we were all sitting at a picnic table with the littlest ones sitting there on top. Jake started crying and Ruthie stuck her finger in his ear - we think she thought that would make him quiet. What a hoot. When it didn't work, she stuck her fingers in her ears. We all took the train ride around the park and Alyssa did the boats. Afterward we all went out to lunch. Ruthie got her first tast of wine this morning - and she liked it. She's too much - we went out afterward to eat and she sucked on a piece of lemon and then ate the rind too.

I'll be in Raleigh until Saturday - then I'm driving to Charlotte for Alyssa's birthday party - grandma has some major shopping to do this week!!!

Sunday, April 8, 2007

What Fun I've Had in Denver

Here are some more of my Denver "adventures"! I spent Friday taking care of Ruthie - yikes! poor Grandma is getting old. She is one precious little girl. The "big" excitement for the day was to take her to the doctor's office to meet my daughter and son in-law for Ruthie's one year checkup. I put Ruthie down for her nap about 1:30 and woke her up at 2:30 so we could get ready to go. She was mad and refused to sit up in her crib so I could get her out. The mattress is set way down low because she stands up now and this grandma is short and so are my arms. I finally convinced her to reach for my hand and so we got up and out. Got her changed, she was not a happy girl, and I knew she needed a bottle. Went downstairs and she wouldn't let me put her down, so I sat her on the kitchen counter with one arm across her lap and somehow made the bottle. She was happy with that, so I went and tried to dress her in the new coat and hat I knitted for her and that wasn't exactly what she wanted either, but I was successful. Picked her up with the bottle, grabbed my purse and knitting bag (I never go anywhere without that) and walked out the door, locked it and we were off - sort of....

Jen and Jon have 2 steps down from their front porch which was fine - I had something to hold onto. Then came the 4 steep steps down to the street where the car was parked - oh dear - I'm not good at walking down steps where there isn't a railing - especially scary with a 20 lb. baby in my arms. It was snowing and I figured no one was looking, so I sat down on the sidewalk and made it down the steps on my tush with Ruthie on my lap. Whew!!! Getting her strapped into the car seat wasn't so easy either, but again, I managed. Off we went - I forgot the directions, but I sort of remembered them. About a mile into this journey, Ruthie starts screaming. I have no clue because sitting backward in that car seat, I can't see her. I kept trying to comfort her and finally turning up the music seemed to help. When we reached the doctor's office, I saw why. The hat I had knitted her fell down over her eyes.

Yesterday was Ruthie's birthday party. About 25 people came - kids too. Ruthie loved her cake and went into it with both hands. She was the cutest mess I'd ever seen. Ruthie's daycare mom came by right before the party. She lives just across the street from them and proudly announced how she saw me crawling down the steps on my bottom with Ruthie! I got caught!!! Jen says she doesn't miss a thing.

Last night we went for dinner at a Brazilian steak house. Miss Ruthie was in 7th heaven with all the food. She loves watermelon - not to mention the mashed potatoes, bits of hard boiled egg, lamb and steak. And what a good girl she was.

This trip has been so much fun - and lucky Grandma - I will see Ruthie in 2 weeks in NC. Maybe I'll finish her Victorian T-Shirt by then.

I'll be back soon.

Friday, April 6, 2007

Greetings from Denver, CO

Wow! I haven't blogged in such a long time. I keep thnking about it and then I go back to my knitting. Been doing a lot of that lately - I made the Girlfriend's Swing Coat for my granddaughter, Ruthie, who just turned 1 two days ago - which is why I'm in Denver to celebrate. The coat needed a hat - so I knitted a tam to match. It's way too cute. I will post photos when I get back to Nashville. I also knitted Ruthie a really cute vest and hat. Right now, I'm knitting her the Victorian TeeShirt. It's out of hand dyed sport weight yarn from

The plane ride was long last night, so I started a pair of socks out of Opal on two circular needles. I've surprised myself that I could do it without too much frustration. It was a noisy flight - one little girl screamed almost the entire way. I felt so bad for her and worse for her mom.

Happy knitting everyone!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Happy Thursday!

It was Girls Day Out for lunch at Ruby Tuesday's. On the way home from lunch, the accountant's office called to say my taxes were done. Had to make a detour there - good news and bad news. I hate tax time!!!

The shawl is back in the bag. I made to Row 40 last night and messed up again. It can live there for a few days - there are other projects to be worked on.
This is Alyssa, my first grandchild, who will be 4 in April.

Meet Baby Jake , Alyssa's little brother, who is 6 months old.
This is Ruth Elizabeth, aka Ruthie - she will be one year old in 2 weeks

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

What a lovely day in Nashville

Hi Everyone! I should be knitting, but I'm taking a little break. One of my many projects in progress is a lace shawl. I'm taking a class at The Neighborhood Knit Shop in Hendersonville, TN. Oh dear, I was doing so well. Of course, I hadn't picked it up since the last class on March 10. The next class is this Saturday, so on Monday, I started work on it again. Got to Row 34 and something happened. I tried tinking it out, but that wasn't a good idea. So----Rip it was. Today I tried again - I'm up to Row 24 and so far, so good.

I'm also signed up to take a Crayon Box jacket class next Saturday. My friend, Maryleigh, and I went up there last week to pick out our colors and buy our yarn. It's a pricey project, but it will be beautiful. Today, I decided to change my color scheme. That was okay - better now, than once I get into knitting it.

Well, I'm off to work on this shawl. Wish me luck.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Today is Tuesday

This has been a great day. This afternoon, we had our knitting group that meets at Brentwood United Methodist Church. We're there every Tuesday from 1 to 4, in room 389. If you live in the Nashville area, please come by and hang out with us. After 4, some of us usually go out for dinner and then to another knitting group at Portland Brew on Murphy Road. Check - we may be looking for another location.

I have way too many projects going - story of my life. Tonight I worked on my grandaughter, Ruthie's swingcoat. It's too cute - I will take a picture of it and publish it when it's done. I am also working on an afghan done in mitred squares - a Plymouth pattern using their new yarn called BOKU. I bought some Rowan denim the other day to make a bulls eye vest for Jake. Can't wait to start that. Alyssa's peasant sweater is done - but there is another sweater for her in the rotation. My yarn stash is outrageous. You don't want to know....

My First Blog!

This is my very first blog and I'm sort of at a loss as to what to say. My greatest joy in life besides my children, my absolutely adorable grandchildren, my wonderful significant other, Barry, is knitting. As much as I have trouble admitting this, I've been knitting for almost 52 years. Yikes!! That's a heck of a long time.

My first knitting experience was in the third grade. The first day of school, the teacher came in and announced that on Thursday afternoons, the girls would knit and the boys would play chess. And we were told, you must bring your yarn in an oatmeal box. Already, I knew I was in trouble. We didn't eat oatmeal in our house. I went home with my list of school supplies that HAD to be purchased and told my mom about the requirements for knitting. She said NO to the oatmeal box. Hey, this was 1955 - you didn't just buy food and toss it out for the box it came in. I cried and my grandmother told me not to worry. She lived with my aunt and they got me the box. My mom knew how to knit - and of course, she taught me. The teacher hadn't a clue what to do with the needles and yarn. It was a struggle, but I never gave up. I still remember those beautiful orange mittens I made for my dad - on one of them, the thumb was way too long. But, good man that he was, he wore those mittens proudly on those bitter cold days in Buffalo, NY where we lived.

By the time I was in high school, I was making sweaters - I even made a fair isle sweater. Over all these years, I've knitted and crocheted a lot of things. And now with my precious grandchildren, Alyssa, Jake, and Ruthie, I stay very, very busy.