Another Long Week

I’m glad this week is finally over.  I had to work five days instead of four and two of those days was with what I call the "high maintenance" doctor.  The younger one, who actually owns the practice was out of town.  He is low maintenance.  If he wants something, he will go get it if he is able.  If he makes a mess, he cleans it up.  The other doctor is just the opposite.  He can’t do anything for himself and seems to enjoy going around the office making messes for others to clean up.  Don’t get me wrong, he’s an excellent dentist, but working with him leaves one exhausted!

Yesterday I worked with the Community Quilt group from our guild.  The group gets together once a month to make quilts to give away.  Some go to the hospital – anyone starting chemotherapy gets a quilt to keep and children going into foster care in our area also get  a quilt to take with them.  I was able to almost finish a quilt top and brought it home to put the finishing touches on:


It will go back to the group for borders, quilting and binding.

I also worked on what I am calling my "Celebration Quilt":


Several people have asked me what I’m going to do with all the extra time I will have now that school is over.  It’s hard to say because it hasn’t really materialized yet.  I will be doing more quilting.  I have to say that it is my first love, but never fear that knitting will go away.  There should be enough of both to keep everyone satisfied.  I’m hoping for more time to exercise!  On Friday I did get home a little early and decided to take Maggie and walk to the bank.  It’s probably about 2 miles round trip.  The ladies at the bank were more than happy to have Maggie come in and she even got a cookie.  However, the walk back home is all uphill and we were two exhausted little hikers when we returned.

With the price of gas ($3.75 when I filled up yesterday!), I think I will be looking at more opportunities to walk into town.  It isn’t always the effort that deters me, but time.  Perhaps with more time I can do that more.  I’ll also be looking for opportunities to take the bus.  For now, we have free bus service anywhere on the island.  I hope that continues!  I’d like to look at the possibilities of public transportation to get to my sister’s house.  From my house I can take the free bus and then get on the ferry to the mainland (also free to walk-ons).  But from there I’m not sure how to negotiate the bus system.

As I mentioned, you need not fear that knitting has been abandoned.  In fact, I’ve made quite a lot of progress on the Flutter Scarf, but it’s almost impossible to get a good picture.  I present this merely as proof that I have been knitting:


And knitting – dang this thing is long!  It starts with a provisional cast-on, is knitted in one direction and then the provisional cast-on is picked up and knitted in the other direction.  So, I’m a little over halfway done.  This is about as close to mindless knitting as lace gets!  There’s only a four row repeat, easily memorized and a "flutter" of activity at the end.  As with all lace, it looks pretty crappy now, but I’m confident it will block out.  The yarn is Knit Picks Alpaca Cloud in the Iris colorway, needles are Knitpicks Harmony in size 3.

This week will also include a "flutter" of activity.  My Mom and Dad arrive in Washington tomorrow and after a couple of days at my sister’s house will arrive here on Wednesday.  Friday we take off for Pullman.  There’s a reception for the graduates in my program on Friday night and the big event on Saturday.  After commencement, my brother-in-law and sister-in-law are throwing a barbecue for us.  Then we will head home Sunday.  I’ve taken off the next two days to recover and visit with my parents.  So, I will not be posting next weekend, but will have loads of exciting photos for you when I return.  And knitting content – the long drive to Pullman and back will give me lots of knitting time!

Long Week

How can a week in which you only work three days seem so long?  I went back to work on Wednesday, and although the days were very busy, the week just seemed to drag!  Plus all of us felt really disoriented.  It’s bad enough coming back after 2 weeks on vacation, but coming back midweek is really confusing.  However, the end of the week brought some excitement.  Hubby’s brother is a professor at Washington State University.  He, his wife and daughters came over to visit and stayed with us.  They made a quick stop at the University to pick up this for me:


It’s starting to feel real!!  Graduation is May 3rd, which incidentally is Isobel’s third birthday. 

Since I now have all this free time, I did get a bit of knitting done.   However, I’m going to keep you in suspense.  I started this project and by the time I got around to thinking about posting about it, it’s impossible to get a good picture.  So I may just wait until it’s done and keep you all guessing.  Those of you on Ravelry can bop on over and get a clue; the rest of you will just have to stay tuned.  By the way, my sister-in-law, who is a new knitter, is on Ravelry.  Her id is "waitingtoknit".  I’d love it if you’d go on over and "friend" her.  She’d get a kick out of it (and wonder – who are all these people?). 

While we were sitting around waiting for them to arrive Friday night, we peeped out our front window and were greeted with this:


Yes, that is indeed snow.  In late April.  It’s kind of an odd juxtaposition next to our flowering cherry trees.  We ended up getting about two inches, which thankfully is now gone.

With so much studying to do, my quilting time has suffered over the past years.  So, I promised myself that when I was done with school, I would start a new quilt in celebration.  While the family was out visiting other family members, that’s exactly what I did.  Here’s what I have done so far:


I had originally planned on another design, but decided I wanted to utilize my embroidery machine, so switched gears.  I am loving this pattern.  I deliberately tried to go outside my usual color palette of pastels and blues.  All of these earthy colors are a real stretch for me.  They’re a real stretch for my fabric stash too.  Many of these pieces have been contributed by my friends, but I still need to go looking for some more brick reds.  I used up almost all I have on just these blocks.

Off to knit on my stealth project and watch "Law and Order" with hubby.  At last we have some new ones!  We’re addicts and are not above watching reruns, but it’s nice to have new material.  Sometimes we’ll just watch the reruns until we remember "who done it."  I know, our lives are exciting beyond belief!

It’s All Over But the Shouting!

I can’t believe that I’m finally saying this, but I’m done, finished and it’s all over but the shouting!!!  Today I took my last exam and handed in my last assignment.  After 10 years of hard work, I have completed the work for my Bachelor’s Degree!  I think I’m still in shock!  Ten years ago I was approaching 50 and mulling over the things I had wanted to accomplish in my life, but hadn’t.  A Bachelor’s Degree was at the top of the list.  So, I went out to lunch with my best friend, Jan, and asked her what she thought of the idea.  Jan teaches at our local community college and not only encouraged me, but after lunch drove me right over to the college to sign up for the asset test!  The rest, as they say is history.  It took me 6 years to get my AA degree, but I graduated at the top of my class with a 4.0 and transferred to Washington State University.  I will be graduating from there summa cum laude with a 3.94.  I have taken at least one class every single quarter/semester (except for summers) for the past 10 years.  I’m nothing if not stubborn!  Graduation will be May 3rd, which incidentally is Isobel’s birthday.  My mom and dad are flying out for the ceremony. 

In other news, the Second Annual Spring Tea was yesterday.  Here are  pictures of some of the lovely participants:


By the way, Jan – the lady who spurred me on to college is on the far left.


A fun time was had by all and I can’t believe I put this together (with a little help from my friends) only two days after I returned from Orlando.

And, in knitting news, I am almost finished with the front of Torgier.  When I laid it out on the floor to measure, Maggie pronounced it good and promptly went to sleep on it:


Off to get ready to go out.  Bill is taking me out to dinner to celebrate.  I told him I was way too educated to cook.  He told me I was educated enough to read a cookbook, but he’ll cut me some slack today!

Greetings from Sunny Florida

Greetings from sunny Florida!  Well, sunny most of the time anyway.  I think we’ve seen more rain here in a week than we have in Washington in a month!  And when it rains here, it comes down in buckets, not the gentle mist of the Pacific Northwest.  Thunder and lightning too!  However, that has not daunted us because of course, we came for other scenery:


Two little princesses!  We have been having a wonderful time snuggling and playing and generally seeing if we can exhaust Nana and Aunt Claudia (my sister), which of course, they can! 

Today we met up with Kris of Sonny and Shear:


Kris and Anna Grace met us at Monkey Joe’s and the girls had a great time jumping and sliding.  Photo ops were hard to come by as most of the time the girls went by in a blur:


Others in the party found all the excitement too much to handle:


They played into happy exhaustion and then we went for lunch and a stroll around the mall.  Anna Grace was helpful in holding Isobel’s hand and helping keep her from running off:


Thanks AG!  During the evenings after the girls have gone to bed, mindless knitting has been the order of the evening:


They met with the baby stamp of approval:


Tomorrow is our last day here.  I hate leaving the girls, but I also miss Ye-Ye (Mandarin for grandfather) terribly!  It will be good to be home.