Saturday, October 30, 2010

5th Avenue Will Be Calling Any Day Now

I just thought you would like to know what I am wearing this morning. I am such a trend setter that I expect people will be running out today to dress like me.

IMG_0274ATry not to envy my fashion sense.

Friday, October 29, 2010

7 Quick Takes (Vol 91)


Tempus Fugits. So remember to click on the picture above to be whisked, with the speed of campaign money being poured into negative ads, over to Conversion Diary to see what everyone else has been doing this week.

But read mine first.

Here it is Friday morning and I haven’t written my Quick Takes. I am a slug. But I am sure that I will be able to find at least 6 other worthless things that are not enough for a full blog post. Although, I can blather on enough to make even the dog hair elephants that collect around the house into a blog post. But some weeks are just like that.

Well, we have decided to take the house off the market in the middle of November. I made a call this week to Joyce the stager to let her know that she can come and get her staging stuff. I am sure that there will be a longer post about the whole non sold house experience. At times it feels like a failure that we haven’t been able to sell but I know, really, that it isn’t a failure on our part. I just have to get beyond the actual date and think about it for a while.

November 2 cannot come fast enough for me. I am SICK SICK SICK of these of political ads. I really think we should change the way we do elections around here. The election season should start 6 weeks before the actual date. Before that time you can’t even talk about your campaign. Spend all the money you want during that time but not before. Doesn’t it feel like the campaigning season just never ends. All too soon we will be seeing ads for the 2012 election.

Thank goodness for the mute button.

James MacArthur died yesterday!! He who was the studly side kick on Hawall 5-0. Oh how I loved Hawaii 5-0 when I was growing up, and I will admit to a crush on James MacArthur. I loved the show almost as much as I loved Starsky and Hutch. I was so wild for Starsky and Hutch that I could tell you, down to the minute, how long I had before the next episode. I thought about Starsky and Hutch, I dreamed about Starsky and Hutch. I lived Starsky and Hutch.

I was just a sad, sad person in high school. Sigh.

Book ‘Em Danno!

So, how do you handle Halloween candy? Do you get something that you like, hoping that you won’t give all of it away? Hoping that you don’t open up the bags before the big day.

We live in a neighborhood that isn’t overrun with Trick or Treaters. There is a lot of space between houses so what happens is that people will actually drive their kids around the neighborhood. Or pull them in a cart behind the tractor. But we don’t even get a ton. So I have to admit that I buy candy that I know we will want to eat starting about 8p on 10/31. And I buy more than I think we will need.

But this year, thank goodness, I have managed not to open the bags before time. But it has been tough and at times dicey thing. I have Reese’s Peanut Butter cups.

And I LOVE those.

But I also have some Dum Dum suckers. And I am giving those out first. Just to preserve the Peanut Butter cups. I am terrible.

I am almost finished with Socktoberfest socks #2. I will finish today. And if I am really a crazy person I might, and a great emphasis on might, be able to finish my Gryffindor socks as well. I will be a happy girl if I do. That would be three pair of socks in one month.

I am a sock machine.

Now if I had just cleaned my house this month.

Oh yes, and on the subject of Trick or Treaters.

I have a peeve.

I know, I know. Deb has a peeve, quel suprise.

If you are over the age of 10 it really, REALLY irritates me to see you coming to my door and asking for candy.

REALLY irritates me.

And if puberty and you are walking hand in hand down the road of life.

And you knock on my door.

You had better not have your hand out for candy.

You had better be telling me that I should vote or trying to sell me a Band Booster calendar or magazine or something.

But you had better not be asking for candy.

Go buy your own.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

I Guess I Like Where I Live

The sun is shining here in the Frozen Northeast Ohio and that is such an odd occurrence that I am in the mood to do a small list of the things I like about this place.

It also may be that I am just confounded as to what else there is to blog about. I could tell you about the banana bread in the oven or the fact that the grass is again covered with leaves and the fact that it is REALLY hard to see the “gifts” that Max leaves in the yard when they are covered with leaves. You just need to remember to step very carefully.

But I digress. Lets think about the things that I like living here in semi-rural suburbia…..

1. The postal clerks know me and seem to like seeing me. In fact, we are to the point that they tell me their problems when I come in. I seem to have a face that just makes that happen.

2. I can turn left out of my street, drive about 300 feet and see sheep grazing in a yard. Or horses on the other side of the street. Drive a bit further and I will see alpaca.

3. Great Lakes Brewing Company. Specifically their Octoberfest or Burning River. Yum.

4. My postal lady knows me, knows the dog, and always seems to be happy to see both of us.

5. Perogies. Enough said on those little pillows of carbohydrate goodness.

6. When out and about I see people I know all the time. I don’t think there is ever a trip to Wally Mart that doesn’t bring someone I know.

7. I guess I have to admit that I like all the wild life, even the rats with hooves deer. I had a buck zip across the road in front of me the other night. Very cool once I confirmed that I hadn’t wet my pants in fright.

8. I live in an area that brings the world Dennis Kucinich. Every place needs a clown.

9. Summers here are wonderful.

10. Of course, summers are offset by winters here which are not so wonderful. But then, we get snow and I can occasionally afford myself a snow day.

11. I live in a town that is big enough to have a Starbucks and a movie theater but small enough that people don’t, right off the bat, know exactly where the town is. And by the way, I don’t like Starbucks so I never go there….but at least we have one.

12. We have a major league baseball team. Not a good one but we have one.

13. Small town politics. There is nothing like it for a really good laugh. Or tearing your hair out.

14. Rolling farm land not all that far away.

15. The Amish. I am fascinated, and a bit obsessed.

16. Lake Effect Snow. It amazes me. Our side of town gets a lot more snow that even 2 miles further west.

17. The Cleveland Orchestra and Blossom Music Center.

Well, I guess that is all for now. I don’t want to overwhelm you with the splendor.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Spread With No Name

I realized that I haven’t done a recipe for a while.

I hang my head in shame.

So today, a recipe. But first the back story.

When I was in nursing school, low those many years ago, Pilot Man showed up at my door one day. I lived in Dallas, he lived in Waco, it wasn’t like it was just a quick jaunt from one place to the next. And not only did he show up, he had a girl with him.

A girl???

And they came bearing gifts which is always nice. They had stopped and gotten me bagels and spread. No fools they cuz nursing students can eat an incredible amount of stuff. Our favorite thing to do was go to Egyptian for pizza, then to TCBY for yogurt and then to Texas Bakery for hot bear claws.

But I digress. And I am a bit nauseous thinking about all that food.

Oh, I guess I forgot to tell you that the girl that Pilot Man had with him turned out to be The Chef and therefore my future SIL. But that was a few years away. At any rate, I toasted the bagel. I spread the spread, which Pilot Man didn’t remember the name of. I took a bite…..

And the angels sang. And my taste buds stood up and said, “Hello!”.

But Pilot Man really had no idea what the spread was, just that it had olives in it and he knew I loved olives. Good choice bro! But I now had a problem. I had to figure out what was in this heavenly spread. It required long and hard study.

OK, it just meant that I had to look at the spread and do some investigation. And thus was born “The Spread With No Name”.

IMG_0195AThese are the things that you will need. Not that many ingredients really.

IMG_0200A Ummmmmmmmmm, cream cheese. This is low fat cream cheese which works well. Don’t use no fat cream cheese. It doesn’t work. Don’t you think that just about everything is made happier with the addition of cream cheese.

IMG_0199A Oh I love sliced almonds. Love, love, love.

IMG_0197AStuffed green olives and deeeeeeeelicious. And salty.

IMG_0198AAnd then there are black olives, those little ovoid nuggets of mellow goodness. Ummmmmmm.

IMG_0202And just a splash or three of Worcestershire sauce for some lovely spiciness.

Take the cream cheese, the olives and the almonds and toss them into the bowl of your food processor with the chopping blade. Pulse until the ingredients are incorporated and the olives are chopped but not pulverized. Don’t over process.

Then add the Worcestershire sauce one teaspoon at a time and pulse a couple of times. After each addition give the mixture a little taste. I like mine with 3 teaspoons in it but that might be too much for others.

And just remember, the recipe with all the measurements can be found with the link at the end of the post. Just in case you want to run right out and make this….which you should.   

Once you have the spread all mixed up and wondering what happened you need to slice and toast your bagel…..

IMG_0203 Oh perfectly done. Drooling. And then the spread transforms a bagel from plain to….

IMG_0207 Amazing.

IMG_0209A I didn’t let any of it go to waste. And just so that you know, this stuff is decidedly delicious on crackers…..

or right off the end of the knife. But of course I wouldn’t ever do that………..


The Spread With No Name

Monday, October 25, 2010

Pictures From The Crypt Redux Again

I have Blog Block today. I have nothing witty or insightful or retweetable to say at the moment. Perhaps it is because I have been on the phone a lot today and used up all my words.

Stop laughing it could happen you know!

So, as a fall back blog post I will pull out some more Pictures From the Crypt to amuse you and give you insight. We could all use a bit of insight.

You didn’t REALLY think that I was done with Pictures From the Crypt did you?

Silly you.

DSCN2183A cozy family picture, including the cat. But the question is…..why is Keith in the picture with us? He is the young man NOT holding the cat. And how long did it take me to get my hair to flip up like that. And really, the big question is…

Why would I WANT to have my hair flip up like that?

DSCN2204This was my room growing up. I believe that I had a slight Charles Schultz complex. Perhaps over identification with Charlie Brown?

DSCN2195I just don’t know what to say about this picture or that jacket other than to apologize for inflicting it upon you.

But I really did love that jacket. It was red.

DSCN2241Boy I sure do look like I am having fun. Remind me again who is buried in Grant’s tomb?

And I have to admit that I think this is the trip that my mother had to bribe be to get me to go with my grandparents.

I am so ashamed.

But I scored a sweet Lord of the Rings Poster and a set of Narnia books out of it. Bless my mercenary little heart.

image 2010-5-13 0008 Oh the pain and agony that this picture brings. Evidently I had very little idea of hair care at that point in life. I am surprised that they even got me to smile.

Deb and drippy spongeEven at a young age I rebelled at cleaning the kitchen.

And get a load of the droopy drawers. Of course there could be “a load” in them if you know what I mean. I am not above drastic measures to get out of cleaning.

In the Dirt Nov63And last but not least, playing in the dirt. Actually I think it was sand. I cannot believe that anyone let me go out and play in the dirt with a white sweater on.

And what in all get out does Pilot Man have on his head? It looks like a ladies “Sunday go to meeting” hat.

But I hope not.

But if it isn’t then I just can’t imagine what it is and why he has it on his head.

I may not be able to sleep tonight pondering this.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Thanks HHBL!

HHBL gave me my first “big girl” camera about 4 years ago.

This is what I got to do yesterday.

IMG_9784ACan there be anything more fun than shooting the wedding of two people who are just so happy to be getting married.

But my legs and feet are killing me today.

But I had a lot of fun so the pain is worth it.

And I got paid.

Friday, October 22, 2010

7 Quick Takes (Vol 90)

7_quick_takes_sm Good golly Miss Molly where do the days go?? Here it is Friday again and time for the inane blather that is usually my 7 Quick Takes. Who knew I could fill up so much space with so little actual content! Remember to click on the picture above to whisk, with the speed of winter’s approach, over to Conversion Diary to see what everyone else has been doing this week.

And now, without further ado and blathering……

I have to say that I haven’t fed the birds in the neighborhood for at least the last 9 months. The realtor insisted that I take the bird feeders down as they made a mess on the deck and heaven forbid there might be a mess.

But, in the spirit of my continuing “stagers strike” I have again put the bird feeders up, at least the ones in the front anyways. I was very afraid that the birds wouldn’t come back. I know I am surrounded by trees but you just never know. But I needn’t have worried. Within 24 hours the greedy little things were back and emptying the feeders with great abandon.

Now I just have to fix up a feeder on the deck.

And buy stock in a company that grows Black Sunflower Seed. I go through a lot of it in the winter time. But it is worth it because I surely do love the birds.

It is almost time to start thinking about the holiday baking. Now that the progeny aren’t at home for most of the time I have really cut back on all the cookies that used to get baked around Chez Knit. There were several years when I was invited to a number of cookie exchanges that required me to bring…..

12 DOZEN cookies.

That meant that I went home with the same number of cookies. And that is A LOT of cookies.

But, the cookie exchanges have seemed to dwindle and I don’t bake so many holiday cookies anymore. Although I will be baking….

Norwegian Filled Cookies
Honey Bars
Lemon Bars
Mama Cuccia’s Cookies
Mint Oreos
Orange-Almond Biscotti
Gingerbread Men
Sugar Cookies

But I am cutting back you know so those are the only ones that I will be baking. And since they all freeze well I will try to get them done early. And you might see one or two of the recipes appear on the blog.

When we had our wood delivered I paid the fellow in cash. He just stood there for a second as if he had never seen money before. It just sat there in his sweaty palm. And then he sort of got a grip, thanked me and they left.

Does no one pay cash for larger items anymore? It was such an odd experience.

Max just thought that I should get out there quicker to throw him the stick.

Can I just tell you, in a totally non-political way, that I am sick to death of political attack ads. Sick. To. Death. And I mean those from both sides of the aisle because all the parties with candidates running are doing this. Please do not tell me how bad your opponent is. Just tell me what YOU are going to do when/if we the people decide to elect you. That is all I want to hear.

And I have to tell you, we have a friend who is running for a very local office, nothing big, nothing major (although all politics is local and therefore major I guess). And the opposition was calling people to dig up dirt on him (none to be found thankyouverymuch). Slimy.

Tell me what YOU are going to do in office. Don’t tell me how bad your opponent is.

My campaign slogan is, “Sock Yarn for All!”

Thank goodness for the mute button.

It is now dark enough in the mornings that I have to carry a flashlight when we walk at the lake. And we have altered the path that we walk, at least on Wednesdays. On Wednesdays, just for a change of pace, we would walk clockwise around the lake rather than our usual counter clockwise. We are wild women. But when you walk clockwise around the lake you start out walking through the woods….and it is really dark in there…..and we just thought it might be better for our general sanity if we walked counter clockwise ever day.

What is really bad about it being so dark in the morning is that it is hard to see this stuff….
IMG_1655Yes, that is goose poop. And there is often times a fair amount of it just waiting to coat the bottom of our walking shoes. Every morning it is “tip toe through the goose poop” at one point on our walk. It plays havoc with our walking pace as we have to slow down so much.

Why can’t those avian freeloaders from the north go south for the winter.

As if I don’t have enough knitting that has to be completed I have decided that to go along with my Hogwarts scarf….

IMG_9129AI will need some Hogwarts socks. I am trying to finish the current socks that I have OTN and then I will cast on for these. I have no idea what they will look like as they will be sort of design as you go. AND because I decided that I needed them yesterday and I don’t want to order yarn just for the gold color (I already have some burgundy in the stash) I made a trip to our local yarn shop, which is always dicey. I seem to come out of there with more than I intended to buy. I only needed gold, fingering weight yarn. But I had the terrible feeling that Edie wouldn’t have that, and I was right. She has loads of nice yarn but not a very great selection of sock/fingering weight yarn. She is German. She views sock knitting in a more utilitarian way that some of the rest of us. Self-striping yarn is great but not all that there is in life. But I did find some yarn that is the right color but of a slightly heavier weight. It will work….I think. If I had to order yarn then I would order more yarn than I needed, I mean I really would want to avoid shipping so of course I would order over $50 of yarn. Even though the cost of the yarn and the shipping would be UNDER $50. Avoid the shipping at all costs! And I can always use sock yarn you know. I have whittled my sock yarn stash down to only enough to make……I think around 15 pairs of socks.

I am really running low.

Even as you are reading this I might be photographing another wedding. I am scared spitless and I don’t scare that easily. My photo/knitting buddy, Erica, recommended me for the job. Thank you Erica. It is a small wedding which is all that I am really capable of doing. And I am having a total crisis of whether I have any skills at all in the photography department.

Gads I hate it when I get like this. But once I am in the midst I am sure that all will be fine. But please, can’t I just take some pictures of babies now.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Getting Ready For Winter

I live in the woods. I might have mentioned it before. Maybe. A time or ten thousand.
IMG_9268A There are lots of trees. Lots. When it is really windy we pray that all the trees stay upright and firmly rooted in the ground where they are supposed to be.

And since I live in the woods it makes perfect sense that HHBL and I…..
IMG_9242A Order our fire wood pre-cut and pre-seasoned. We aren’t as mentally deficient as we look.

Yes I am sure that we could get out there in the woods with the chain saw and good health insurance and cut down our own trees. Cut off the branches. Drag them up to the house. Cut them into appropriate lengths and then split them. But the first thing that enters my mind when I contemplate it is.


Why would I want to do that when I can make one phone call and have them bring it to me AND stack it. The second part of that last sentence is the part I like best. I really don’t like stacking firewood if there is any possibility that I can get someone to do it for me, even if those people insist on calling me “ma’am”. Oh please stop that. I might have to hurt you.

IMG_9266AAll ready for the snow to fly. And in case you think that will be a while….you haven’t visited the Frozen Northeast Ohio. I have seen snow many an October. Sigh.

And after the wood was covered……

It was time to play with Max for a little bit.

IMG_9260A  You have a stick. I need the stick. Give me the stick. Throw the stick. Do it now. Do it now.

IMG_9257A Don’t make me bark. I need the stick. Give me the stick. The stick is mine. Mine you hear me.

IMG_9255ACome on Come on Come on Come on. Stick I need the stick. There is a stick. Throw it!!

IMG_9259A  StickStickStickStickStickStickStickStickStickStickStick!

IMG_9252A Squirrel?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Epic Pickle Fail

I was going to post a recipe today. I had been waiting to see how these things turned out. Waiting patiently for months.

And we all know that I don’t wait all that patiently. People do not drive fast enough in the passing lane. People do not walk fast enough in the airport. We don’t need to stroll people, that is what the park is for.

So, back when LookLeap and I were deep into the garden we had a bunch of these

IMG_8651AOh did we have loads of cherry tomatoes. Lovely, sweet little globes of goodness just waiting to be eaten.

And eaten……

And eaten.

I never thought I would get tired of cherry tomatoes but I came close. And there were still so many. And I wasn’t about to skin all of them and try to make sauce with them. And I was in a “making pickles” mode. And then I found a recipe for Pickled Cherry Tomatoes.

Hey, that sounds like it would be interesting. And I love pickles.

And I had just finished making a big batch of these beauties. And oh did they turn out….
IMG_8672A                                            Stupendously delicious.

But the thing is, the cherry tomato pickles had to sit for a while. You don’t can them, you just put them in the brine and let them sit in the frig, undisturbed, for at least 6 weeks.

Open frig door. Look at cherry tomato pickles. Close frig door. Check calendar. Not yet.

But then the day came.

And I opened the frig door and took out the jar of cherry tomato pickles.

Oh they looked beautiful. The colors were still wonderful. My mouth was watering with anticipation. Pavlov’s dogs had nothing on me! I opened up the jar and took a whiff. Hmmmm, doesn’t smell all that “pickley” but that doesn’t mean anything. I gently inserted my fairly clean fingers into the jar and pulled out a little globe of goodness and popped it into my mouth.



They are not good, not good at all. More to the point they are singularly unspectacular. Not really “pickly”, not really even very “tomatoey” any more. And of course they had lost some of their crispness which I had expected.

Smooshy non-pickley pickled cherry tomatoes.

Total disappointment. It was like dreaming about all the things you were getting at Christmas and then waking up in July.

And so there will be no recipe today. It has been exiled to Pickleberia where all bad pickle recipes go never to return.

And I still have two jars of mediocre at best Pickled Cherry Tomatoes.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I’ve Been Tagged TWICE!!!

OK, I have been tagged. Not once but twice. And by two bloggers that I love so I will participate even though to talk about myself is such a wrench.

What? I sense some disbelief coming from my computer screen. But it is true. It is one thing to talk about whatever comes out of my pointy little head and totally another to answer questions that someone else has asked.

This is what I am going to do. I am going to answer all the questions in one post. And then I will tag. And I apologize in advance to those I tag. You have to play. You love me, you know you do.

First up are the questions from The Mom Chef who I have known for a long time. She talks about awesome food over at her blog. You must go over there.

 1. What's the best live event (concert, comedian, etc.) that you've ever attended and when/why?
OK, I am not a big live concert person. I know that makes me odd, or more odd than most people think that I already am. But I have to say that the best live event that I have ever been to are the ALDS, ALCS and World Series games that HHBL and I have attended over the years. There is absolutely nothing that can beat the energy and excitement. And the fact that I absolutely love baseball doesn’t hurt either. There was one game, 1997 I think, where we were at the ball park until almost 2a when Tony Pena finally hit the game winner. It had rained. I was cold and wet. It didn’t matter. I was horse for days. It was the most awesome thing.

2. If you were given the opportunity to cook alongside any one professional chef, who would it be?
Well, we all know that the standard answer would be Julia Child right? I actually would just like to sit and talk with her not cook alongside. I have a feeling that, however approachable Julia Child would be it would still be too intimidating. I would actually have to say that given the opportunity I would like to cook alongside Nigella Lawson. That way she could just talk all the time and I could just listen. And besides, I just love to watch her cook. Doesn’t it seem like she just loves food and loves cooking. It is mesmerizing.

3.  When you were growing up, what did you want to be? Are you doing that? If not, what?
You know, I think this might have been the hardest question to answer. When I was growing up I don’t really remember if I had great aspirations to be something particular. I guess I would say that I would have loved to have a degree in History. However, early on I realized that you have a hard time making a living with that kind of degree. That is why I have a BS in Nursing…which I am not doing now. I am still trying to decide what I want to be when I grow up. I think it is going to be photography.

4. If your house was on fire, what one item would you grab from the kitchen to save?
Well, if I had answered these questions yesterday I would have said my French Press and my coffee beans from Ethiopia. But yesterday the French Press cracked straight through, a tragedy of immense proportions as I am not able to go out and get a new one until Monday. To be honest I would grab the small measuring cups that used to be my Grandma Amslers. Those can’t be replaced. All the rest can be.
5.  Coke or Pepsi?
Oh that one is so easy. Coke. And NOT Diet Coke. Full, regular Coke. I allow myself one regular Coke a month as a treat. And it is delicious.

6. How many years have you been friends with the person you've known the longest?
Oh that would be Brenda Hook Morris and we have known each other a LOOOOOONG time. I think it is at least 46 years, maybe more.
Kids at at Three Oaks                                 I am the one on the far left. Brenda is next to me. 
7. What food dish do you consider the most daunting and have not yet gotten up the courage to attempt it yet?
Oh this is an easy one….puff pastry. Why that is so daunting to me I do not know but it just scares the weebie jeebies out of me. Yeast dough, no problem. Pie, no problem…usually. Complicated recipe, no problem. But puff pastry makes me want to go and hide somewhere until the threat is gone.

8. If you were an animal, what would you be?
Now this is a question worthy of Barbra Walters!! I would have to say a cat in a very pampered household. You can sleep when and where you want. People bow to you and give you food. And you can be as snooty as you want. Or as loving.


And now for the questions from Cindy at Letters From Midlife. Cindy is my bloggy friend. We understand each other. We are blog sisters separated at birth.

1. Who would you like to see in concert and have a backstage pass to meet?
Arthur Rubenstein and hopefully he would be playing Rachmaninoff’s Variations of a Theme of Paginini, the piece of music that makes my heart sing with joy.

2. What one skill would you like to possess that you can't already do?
I wish I had some mechanical skills, or at least more than I possess at the moment. I am “spacially” oriented, I can visualize how something is going to go together but there are a lot of things that I don’t know how to do. I should have watched Papa closer when I was younger rather than reading a book.

3. What fictional character (from books or movies) would you like to meet?
Philippa Talbot in In This House of Brede. It is one of my favorite books and I have no idea why but it is. Of course, I like just about everything that Rumer Godden has written.

4. Where would your dream home be located?
By the water. I remember, on a trip to Washington State many years ago, driving by a house that was located on the shore. It wasn’t a big house, it just looked happy and content. The sun was shining on it, the tide was coming in, the sea gulls were zooming all around, the light was soft. I don’t have a picture of it except in my memory but that memory is as fresh as yesterday.

5. If you could switch careers or start one for the first time, what would you like to do? 
What I am going to be doing, I hope. Being a photographer. I am absolutely petrified. But I still want to do it. Some of you will understand me when I say that I have to take pictures.

6. If money, responsibility and fear weren't considerations, what one great adventurous thing would you attempt?
Hmmmmmmm. You know, HHBL and I have traveled a fair amount. I would just continue to do that. I would really like to go back to India and Africa for a longer time. And I really, really, really want to go back to Australia and New Zealand. I would really just travel with HHBL.

7. What Biblical event would you like to witness?
God’s still small voice.

Wow, I am beat after all that. And now here are my questions and the people I tag. Don’t get mad. It isn’t that difficult. Really.

1. What is your favorite childhood memory?
2. What music makes your heart sing? Why? 
3. What place would you like to travel to the least (sorry, I have to be contrary)?
4. How do you relax? What hobby recharges you?
5. What do you want people to remember you by (I stole that one from Cindy)?
6. What do you like the most about blogging? What do you like the least?
7. Dogs or cats?

And I tag……………..
Marianne at Life With Riley
Kathy at Twist and Shout
Barbee Ann at Couch Potato Queen
Tamara at Watching the Grass Grow
Jess at Knit Wit Rosie (who will kill me for tagging her)
Whitestone at Wanna Walk Along

Monday, October 18, 2010

Oh The Agony

Friday October 15, 2010.

A death has occurred here at Chez Knit.

A cry of agony echoed across the kitchen landscape.

My French Press broke.


I was going about my day. Not hurting anyone. Totally unaware. Secure in my world. Cleaning my kitchen. Emptying my dish washer.

Take French Press out of dish washer. And yes you can put the French Press in the dishwasher, you just need to put it on the upper rack.

Put it on counter.

Hear ominous and tell tale dull “thunk” sound that is characteristic of cracked glass.

What was that? That sounded like something that has a crack in it.

Turn around to look closer at the French Press………

IMG_9229AIs that a crack? It can’t be a crack!! It is 5p on a Friday and I can’t go out and get a new French Press before tomorrow morning. In fact, I can’t get out to get a new one until Monday. May be in is just a scratch or something. Yeah. Yeah that’s it. A scratch.

 IMG_9230BNo, no that doesn’t look like a scratch unfortunately. And when I pressed on the glass I could feel it shift. That is definitely not good.

IMG_9232B Cracked glass and hot water do not good coffee make.

I just stood there for a time. Thinking about the disaster. Wondering how I was going to manage. What could I do? I could go out early on Saturday morning to get coffee at McD’s house. But really, I didn’t want to venture out in the dark much as I love my morning Joe.

So I had to settle for grinding coffee and using the Keurig. It was OK but it wasn’t great and it definitely wasn’t hot enough and there definitely wasn’t enough of it.

But thank goodness I will be able to go out today to get a new one.

Otherwise things might be really bad around here.

Of course I had to memorialize it with a short poem

My French Press it is broken.
My heart is full of woe.
So I've had to find another way.
To make my morning Joe.

The services will be later this week. I will let you know.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Girding My Loins

It is Fall.

I live in semi-rural area.

My house sits in the woods.



Leaves=a pain in my backside come Fall

This what what HHBL and I will be dealing with this afternoon after the neighborhood get together…..

IMG_9212A Leaves

Oh sure, they are all pretty and lovely and beautiful.

If they are on someone else’s lawn that is. But on our lawn they are just a pain in my backside….and my legs…..and my arms.

IMG_9213A And this isn’t even all of them. I would guess that we will be blowing leaves off the lawn at least two more times before the end of the leaf season.

IMG_9215A The good thing is that we will just blow them off into the woods where they will go all back to nature. Of course, if we have a really windy day then we might see some of them re-enter the no leaf zone but that can be handled.

Thank goodness for leaf blowers!!

Don’t you just love using a leaf blower. It gives me such a sense of power and authority to make those leaves do what I tell them.

I am more like my father than I want to admit.

IMG_9219A Alpha Male I am ready to keep you safe while you blow leaves! I shall bark at all things in the yard and on the street and in the woods and in the town and in the state and at the leaf blower and at the squirrels…..


IMG_9227BScratch me oh Alpha Male. I love you.

This is just about the only way that I can get Max to hold still for a picture. He just doesn’t like to look at the camera. So you have to bribe him.

But you definitely don’t have to bribe him to go outside.

Friday, October 15, 2010

7 Quick Takes (Vol 89)


What? It’s Friday already? Where did my week go? Did someone take it and misplace it and not tell me. Oh well, if it is Friday then that means it is Quick Takes time. So after reading my drivel below be sure to click on the picture to whisk through cyberspace as fast as the speed of the Republicans taking over Congress (and that will be the last political reference) to see what everyone else has been doing.

One of my favorite people is my college roomie, Susan. Her daughter Katie and SiL Ben are currently serving as teachers in Haiti. This is their story. It is about 5 minutes long and so worth the watching.

I am constantly in awe of young people who listen to the Lord’s call. Who don’t look to their own comfort but to what the Lord is calling them to do. Amazing. You can find Ben and Katie’s blog here.

I was at the mall yesterday for a meeting. I never go to the mall. Malls are just not my thing anymore. But it was fun to be there yesterday with a bit of time to spare before my meeting so that I could just watch all the people. Groups of teenage girls clutching bags from Claires, GAP, Sephora etc. Teenage girls never go to the mall by themselves, I certainly didn’t. There were cute little old ladies dressed to the hilt. There were roving groups of boys doing who knows what. There were moms and dads pushing babies in strollers or dragging them along kicking and screaming.

And then there were the people trying to sell me something or douse me with perfume. Grrrr. No  I don’t want to take your survey or sign up for your credit card or smell like a million bucks.

But, it was fun people watching.

Finally finished my first Socktoberfest socks last night. After this little debacle I was worried I might just have lost sock mojo for a bit. But they are done. And I love them, as I do most of the socks that I knit. They will be washed and blocked and photographed today. And then they will be warn. And I am definitely happy that I frogged back that first sock although it almost killed me to do it. Killed me I tell ya!

I am going to have to take a serious look at some of the socks in the hand knit “drawer”. There are about 24 pairs in there at the moment but there are several that I knit early in my sock carrier that aren’t all that good and that I don’t really like to wear. As my hand hovers over the pairs in the morning when I am deciding what to wear it will hover over these socks briefly and then move on. What to do, what to do.

And I have noticed a sad deficiency in the sock colors. I have nothing that is purple or pink (oh no says friend Bonnie) or orange in there. So I cast on something purple last night to start to remedy the situation. There will never be any socks that are yellow as yellow and I don’t mix. Yes I know it is a happy color, just not on me.

Yesterday, no blog post. So sorry. I apologize. I grovel. I ask that you not leave me howling in the emptiness that is cyberspace.

If a blogger howls in cyberspace does anyone hear her?

If you blog do you ever have a day when you get up, look at your computer and think, “It is so not happening today.” Most of the time when that happens I just work through it. There is always something to drone on about about like Aunt Edna talking about her ill fitting dentures.

Disclaimer: I do not have an Aunt Edna. And none of my aunts have dentures…that I know of.

It wasn’t like I didn’t have the time. I just didn’t have the blog mojo. So I took the day off and did laundry.

And speaking of laundry as we were. I love sorting laundry. I love putting the laundry in the washer and the dryer and washing and drying…

And then the system breaks down into total chaos because I really don’t like folding clean laundry. I have always felt that it should really come out of the dryer already folded and ready to be put away. I mean I have done all that other work for the love of Pete. But for some reason the dryer doesn’t cooperate. It just lets the clothes sit there and get wrinkled and makes me come over there and fold them.

How rude.

I had a severe need for something sweet last night and there just wasn’t anything in the house to satisfy. And it was a terrible thing to go through I can tell you. I literally stood in my kitchen and tried to find something.

Apple? No, not in the mood.

Banana? I ate one and that reminded me why I don’t really like bananas…unless they are in banana bread or muffins.

Really, when you are in that kind of mood a piece of healthy fruit is not going to do it for you. It is like your mom telling you that it is liver and onions for dinner when you were so hoping for pizza….or having to drink generic pop when you so wanted a Coke.

Cream Soooooooda (sorry, inside family joke that I couldn’t resist).

But I digress.

So today I am just going to have to make something. Because I just can’t go another day in the Dessert Desert. It is going to be damaging for my psyche which is already a bit screwed up naturally.

And I am sure that I will take pictures of the whole thing and tell you all about it. Now I just have to decide what it will be.

I actually threw away some pictures this week. It was hard. It was wrenching. I felt like I was in a episode of Hoarders and I was clutching my stash to me and yelling, “I don’t know why you all are making me give up my stuff! I need my stuff! There isn’t that much of it!”

I may have been watching too many episodes of Hoarders.

But really, I found a box of pictures in the basement that were actually leftovers from previous scrapping projects. And after determining that I had electronic copy of all of them I took a deep breath and consigned them to the circular file. But believe me they are going to show up here in a future post because they were pretty much all in the category of “Why did I even print this off and what was I thinking.”

You have been warned.

Have a great week all. I am shooting a wedding next Friday. I am scared spitless. Thank goodness they are young and in love and think I am wonderful for doing this. Don’t call them and tell them otherwise. I am sure I will tell you all about it later. I tell you everything you know.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Good Books Deserve Good Bookmarks

This whole house on the market thing sometimes brings upheaval that almost does me in.

I can live with my furniture all in strange places. I can live, for the moment, with artwork I hate on my walls. I lived for 8 months with Big Red stored in the garage.

I can (barely) live with my books being packed in boxes.

But I just couldn’t live any longer without my bookmarks.

Bookmarks Deb?


Yes, bookmarks.

If you are going to read a book you need to have a bookmark. Yes, you can turn down the pages but why would you do that? What has the poor book ever done to you? Turning down book pages always seemed to me like bending the poor little books fingers back.

Oh that book will remember your place alright, all the while nursing it’s poor little bent pages.

Anthropomorphizing the books much Deb?

But I digress.

I have a collection of bookmarks. I know, I know…what a surprise, she has a collection of something. Yes, I do. But the thing is….I couldn’t find them. And I was really worried about it. Stupid thing to be worried about but there it is. In the flurry of packing up things and moving furniture when putting Chez Knit on the market I packed up the drawer where I kept all my “reading paraphernalia”. My pencils that I use for marginalia. My page flags. My bookmarks.

But since I am now staging a house staging revolt I wanted my bookmarks back. I needed them to be whole in my reading. Big Red is back where he belongs and I needed my bookmarks to complete my reading happiness. But I couldn’t find them.

I looked in the boxes that were marked “Deb’s Office”.


I looked in drawers.


And I had almost given up and figured that they would just turn up when we finally moved and unpacked…..and then I found them. In a box that was unmarked and not in the place where all the other “Deb’s Office” boxes were located. A momentary brain fart on my part. Sorry, I said the word fart.

And because this blog post is running on and on and on and on and…..and you all just live for the minutiae of my life, I thought I would show you some of them…………

Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

IMG_9179AI have a bunch of glossy bookmarks from different national parks that we have visited.

IMG_9181  Ummmmmmmmm, Aragorn. Of course I use this one with my yearly reading of LOTR. It is only right and good that I do so.

IMG_9182A My sister of the heart, Dottie, gave me this one. It is silver and feathery and I love it.

IMG_9186AThis one came from India. It was made by a woman who is a participant in a microfinance group. I bought a bunch.

IMG_9188AThis one also came from India. Indian Air nicely gave it to me when they let me fly from Delhi to Coimbatore. And then I thought they had lost my luggage because my suitcase was the last one to be taken off the plane and brought around to the luggage carosel with a bullock drawn cart. Fun times.

IMG_9190A I don’t remember who gave me this one but I love it because it never slips out of the book.

IMG_9197A This one came from Turkey. My momma brought it back for me. I love it.

IMG_9196A My momma brought these back for me from China. They are so cool, made out of bamboo with little drawings on them.

IMG_9189A And then there are these. These are all leather bookmarks. You used to be able to get these where ever you traveled. But I rarely see them anymore. When I do see them I buy one.

IMG_9185ABut this one….this one is the first. The beginning. The genesis of the collection. And it is still my favorite. It is worn and supple and we will never be parted again. At one time I thought I had lost him for good. I couldn’t find him anywhere and I was bereft. And then one day I opened a book and there he was. Just waiting to be found.

What I love most about him is his smell. He smells like….leather.

IMG_9203AMost of the time when I am reading and I have this bookmark with me this is how you will find me, with the book mark folded over inside out and up to my nose so that I can smell it as I read.

And did you notice….

Did you see…..

Big Read is back in my office. Life is good.

I thought about photoshopping out the wrinkles but I am all about realism here at Chez Knit so you will just have to deal with them…and the fact that I forgot to pluck my eyebrows.

And that I have no make up on. Which means that I went to bible study this morning this way. Thank goodness they like me

Please overlook the fashionly challenged person that I am.