Catching Up

This week has been spent catching up, both at work and home.  It was lovely to be home again and both dogs gave us a very, very warm welcome!  Even Maggie has been a little snuggly this week – when she's not bugging us to play, play, play.  Today was my first whole day at home and I spent most of it in my sewing room.  I embroidered the office logo on some fleece pullovers for the two of us up front and made a wall hanging:


My Round Robin group has decided to do quilting rather than piecing this time.  I didn't really want a whole cloth quilt, but have always wanted an Amish quilt.  This came out a little more garish than I really wanted, but I'm hoping the quilting will soften it a little.

I also finished my Monkey socks:


Pattern:  Monkey socks by Cookie A.  Yarn:  Dream in Color Smooshy in Cool Fire.  Needles:  Knitpicks circs, size 0.  I had originally intended to knit this yarn up in the Hibiscus for Hope pattern, but Deb convinced me to dive into the Socknitters Anonymous challenge, so I changed my pattern to fit into that.  Oh – modifications:  I used all knit rather than knit/purl and used a slip stitch on the heel to narrow it a bit more. 

Before we went to Orlando I was busy working on a project that I didn't blog about because I wanted it to be a surprise.  I made these cute little finger puppets and purse for Isobel:


They were a big hit – Izzy especially liked lining them up – she does like order!



No progress on Chenille.  But I'm not worried – Marguerite's too busy hobnobbing with the famous to be knitting!

Safe and Sound in Orlando

We made it safe and sound to Orlando, but not without a bit of travel drama.  We were scheduled to connect through Houston on Friday, but the airport was closed because of Hurricane Ike.  A quick scrambling and a hour on hold snagged us tickets through Newark, New Jersey.  The catch was that we arrived in Newark at 12:00 midnight and could not get a flight out until 7:00 the next morning.  So, we spent a long night in the airport.  It was safe and clean, but not high on amenities for the sleep deprived.  Why do they insist on fixed arm rests – preventing you from stretching out?  Bill's novel idea was to sleep on top of the chairs:


It was less than successful.  My solution was to just lay down on the floor.  Thankfully no pictures, but I did manage to snag a couple of hours of restless sleep, broken every 15 minutes by the admonition to not leave my luggage unattended or it might be destroyed.  Just in case you are curious, this is what Newark, New Jersey looks like at 4:00 a.m.:


We just kept focusing on what awaited us on the other end and it proved to be entirely worth it!  One of my first conversations with Isobel – "I love you Isobel!"  "I love you too, Nana!"  Yeah, entirely worth it!


Izzy has changed so much.  She's now speaking in complete sentences.  She remains completely besotted by her Ye-Ye (Mandarin for grandpa).  When he's around, the rest of us might as well be chopped liver.  Except when she's hurt or sad, then she prefers Nana.  We thought Ivy might be a little stand-offish, but she warmed to us right away.  She's much more outgoing than Izzy was at that age.  She'll go to us just as readily as to her Mom or Dad.  She's a happy, cheerful little girl with a winning personality.

Not much time this week to knit or blog, but do I mind?


You've got to be kidding!

All Quiet

All is quiet here at Missouri Star.  There's hardly anything to blog about, but I may be away from the blog for a couple of weeks, so thought it best to update.  Only four more days of work and we leave for Orlando!  I'm so anxious to see Ben and Abby and the girls.  We'll be there one week – not nearly long enough to be with the grandbabies, but plenty long to be away from home.  The older we get, the harder it is to be away from our house and our dogs.  Maggie and Kirby will be in good hands, however.  Our younger son lives in an apartment attached to the house and he provides great care for the dogs when we are gone.  Although mentally handicapped, he is independent enough to be left alone for a week or so and we really appreciate have a live-in dogsitter.

I have to relate a recent incident in his life.  Last month he decided, on his own, that he wanted a new job.  He's worked at the local Pizza Hut for 8 years – mostly cleaning and chopping vegetables.  It's been a great job for him and they have been wonderful – patient with him when he is slow and understanding that his attention span is a little on the short side.  He went to the local Walmart and applied for a job.  He went to the interview, on his own, and actually got a job night stocking.  Alas, it only lasted about 3 weeks and they let him go because he was too slow.  The sad thing is that in his current job, the state provided a job coach for over a year to help him learn the job.  Because of cut backs in funding, a job coach was not an option for this job.  However, we are as proud as punch of him and told him so.  We told him he should never ever be ashamed of trying something and failing.  He gave it his best and that's all anyone could ask of him.  Wisely, he decided not to quit his other job until the Walmart job was permanent, so he still has a job.  We are so proud of him!  When we adopted him, the Child Development Center at the University of Washington had some pretty dire predictions for him.  He had suffered some pretty horrific abuse that caused brain damage.  They felt he would never learn to read and would grow into a very troubled teenager with significant anger issues.  He now actually reads on a 9th grade level, although his math skills have never advanced beyond about 1st grade.  But above all, he is a sweet, kind man with a perpetually happy outlook on life.  Everyone who knows him loves him and he has many friends at church who look out for him and make sure that he gets to all of the functions.

Ok, so back to actual knitting content.  I actually have an FO to show:


These are simple cabled socks (no pattern) out of Dream in Color Smooshy – Chinatown Apple.  A pretty noneventful knit – these will be for me.  I ordered more Smooshy from Sonny and Shear, this in the Cool Fire colorway:


This will be for some socks for one of our employees who is battling ovarian cancer.  She loves bright colors, especially bubblegum pink and she was admiring some socks I had knit for a friend.  I'll be using the Hibiscus for Hope pattern.  I believe it is still available through that link for a donation to breast cancer research.  Although my friend has a different type of cancer, I thought it was still appropriate and looks like a fun pattern.  That will be my plane/vacation knitting, along with this:


These are toe-up socks using Cat Bhordi's upstream pattern from New Pathways for Sock Knitters.  I was so pleased with my Coriolis socks that I wanted to give this a try too.  So far I think I like this even better.  I have no idea what the yarn is – Regia maybe?  With some cotton content.  It was obviously frogged from a previous project.

I'm taking my laptop with me and hope to have time to blog a little after the girls go to bed.  Until then I leave you with a picture of progress on Chenille: