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Thursday, August 16, 2018

Same song, second verse...

Happy Wednesday!  Remember last week when I said it was smokey?  Well, that was nothing compared to this week.  We've  been in the unhealthy/hazardous air quality all week.  I woke up at the lake Tuesday morning and this was what I was greeted with.  You all know how close the lake is to our trailer and I could barely see the water.
 This was the sun when I took Chloe for her walk that morning.  My nose was running, my eyes were stinging and my head throbbed, all from the smoke.  I decided to go home to the air conditioning.
 The view from home wasn't much better.  This is the view of Mt. Spokane.  What?  You can't see it you say?  Nope.  Smoke is blocking it completely.
 There is a monastery in the picture below that is usually very visible from our house.  Not now.  So many fires all around us.  Four new ones started yesterday.  Our relatives from around the country say the only fires they hear about on the news are the California fires.  I know they are terrible.  I would never try to say that the utter devatation there isn't awful because it truly is.  But...Washington, Oregon, Canada and Montana are all on fire too.  Glacier Park is closed because of fires.  And it's not on the news for some reason.  I guess we just aren't as much of a concern to the news media as California.  I have heard of at least 3 people that have died because of the smoke here in eastern Washington.  Every day I get a recorded message from my cardiologist's office to stay inside the A/C and not be outside.  This is becoming a yearly occurance in August.  We never had smoke like this until 2014.  I wonder why there are so many fires all of the sudden?   We have not had any measurable rain for the last three months, meanwhile it's flooding on the east coast!
 So, I've been staying inside knitting or going in my car to various places with the A/C going full blast. :-)  In the photo below I'm watching the "Little Bobbins" knitting podcast while knitting on a scarf for a Christmas gift.
 In process.
A closer photo so you can see the pattern a bit better.  I did finish the scarf late last night.  The pattern is called "The Dudester" and is free on Ravelry.  I used Hobby Lobby's "I Love This Yarn" in the Marled Denim colorway.  I started knitting an "Antler Toque" to match this morning.  It is a Tin Can Knits pattern that can be purchased on Ravelry.  I've made several Antler Toques before and it is a great pattern.  I will also make a pair of mittens to go with the scarf and hat.
 I have  been doing some reading this week.  I really enjoy Debbie Macombers writing and have most of her books.  This one, "Cottage by the Sea" is her latest and I read the entire book in two afternoons.  I highly recommend it for some light reading.  It's loosely based on a true story about the mudslide in Oso, Washington a few years ago that killed many people.
I realized I had missed several of her books when they came out, so I placed an Amazon order for three books.  This one will be my next read.
Guess who started kindergarten on Tuesday?  Isn't she the cutest thing?  She face-timed with me after school that day and told me all about it.  So far, so good.  She loves it.  Mandy texted yesterday though, that they already had to lock down the school on Wednesday because of a suspicious person.  The police came and took him away and all was okay, but oh my!  Scary, scary, scary for the parents.  What a world we're now living in.
Dennis is on vacation next week and we had planned to stay at the lake and have a staycation there.  He's exhausted and really needs the down time.  Who knows now?  We may just have to stay home.  We won't tell many people we're at home and can watch movies, sleep late, etc.  We'll go day by day and decide what to do.  The important thing is to spend time together and just enjoying each other isn't it?

Not much else exciting is happening here because I'm just staying inside, knitting and reading.  Oh, and vacumming and normal stuff like that! :-)
I hope you are all enjoying the last days of summer.  Has school begun where you live?  Our's doesn't begin until after Labor Day.

"May the God of hope full you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13

and

"Above all else guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it." Proverbs 4:23

Blessings always,
Betsy

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Smoke Gets In Your Eyes...

Hello Everyone!  Well, as everyone seems to know, we on the west side of the U.S. are experiencing lots of wildfires and smoke.  This was the view last Friday, yes a whole week ago, at the lake.  It has just gotten worse.  In fact with hot weather, (the temperature is predicted to be 107F tomorrow), and air in the "unhealthy" range, we came home on Sunday and haven't gone back.  The extreme heat is very, very unusual.  This summer has NOT been a good one.  This morning I couldn't see the houses across the street from us because of smoke.  None of the fires are threatening us, it's just the unrelenting smoke from all of them burning, even the California fires are affecting our air quality.  We do have several fires within 20 miles or so of us in three different directions!  Making matters worse is the fact that Spokane lies within a "bowl" which causes air inversions.  It usually affects us most in the wintertime with the air lying in the bowl and not blowing away.  This summer it's the smoke that isn't leaving us.  So, I feel truly blessed to have air conditioning and I'm staying inside for the most part.
 Yesterday, although we couldn't see the blue sky, I was able to take a photo of my "Rose of Sharon" bush.  I love this bush.  It starts blooming around the 4th of July every year and blooms until the first frost.  It's my favorite color and I look forward to the first blossom every summer.
I did finish another pair of socks, made with Knit Picks Stroll Tweed in the Thirst Heather colorway.  I used the Hermione pattern again.  I really like that pattern as it gives the sock texture and some grip so the leg isn't always falling down.
I made some mittens for the school children this week.  Four pair....
 and another five pair.  The big ball of Loops and Threads Impeccable yarn makes a LOT of mittens!  There is probably enough to make two or three more pair from that same ball.  I needed a break though so...
I made Miss Piper a hat to go with the rainblow wristwarmers I made her last week.  She wanted a pom-pom so I got out my Clover pom-pom maker and made my second ever pom-pom.  I think I'm addicted to them.  Those little gadgets make them so easy to make.
 I have another pair of socks on the needles.  I know it's a Knit Picks yarn, but I've lost the label somewhere. These are also made with the Hermione pattern. Should I put pom-poms on the toes! Ha!
The girls are becoming my knitting companions.  Whenever I'm home and in my chair, both of them are sitting with me.  I really am enjoying having them here.  I've always loved both of them and I've missed having an animal sit with me.  Chloe is too big for a lap dog!  Frannie (14) is on the left and Amelia (16) is on the right.  Sweet girls.  I feel terrible when we are gone to the lake because they are truly "people" cats.  At least with us.  The minute a stranger walks in the door they become ghost kitties!  I can't find them even when I look.  As soon as the door closes behind the visitor when they leave, both are right back with Dennis and I. 
I'm still having photo issues with the computer, but Dennis is patiently working on the problem.  Hopefully this particular issue is resolved now.

There really isn't a lot happening right now.  I've just been staying inside, watching podcasts on utube, some Netflix and knitting mittens!  It seems like a waste of summer, but this darn smoke is awful.  Then I feel terrible for complaining because there are so many people losing everything from the fires.  I have also been spending a lot of time in prayer.  There are so many concerns right now throughout the world.  I am grateful to have the luxury of time to pray for others.  Many times, as I knit and feel the yarn run through my hands, I pray for the person that will be wearing the item I'm making.  I think of the prayers woven through each stitch and hope the recipient will know that someone cares about them.

I hope each of you also know that I also care about each one of you. If any of you would like me to pray for you, please feel free to send me a private email at queenbetsy2@gmail.com.  I would be honored.

This was my Mom's favorite Bible verse.  I think of it often.

"I lift up my eyes to the mountains-where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth." Psalm 121:1-2

another favorite of mine,

"Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends."  John 15:13

I hope I would do this if it were required of me.

Have a wonderful weekend my friends and BE SAFE!

Blessings,
Betsy





Saturday, July 28, 2018

Still Hot But Not Complaining...

It's still really hot here, in fact it's supposed to be well over 100F through next Tuesday, but I'm really not complaining.  So many people have it far worse.  We have wildfires burning all around us, but nothing like the absolute inferno's in California.  My heart goes out to the people around Redding, California who have lost absolutely everything.  And in Greece, where so many have died from the fires.  Meanwhile, people on the U.S. east coast have lots of rain.  I don't mean to make light of it, but I think I would take the rain right now.  We desperately need it.

On a bit of a lighter note, I have some crafting to show you.  These are the baby blankets I crocheted last week.  I snapped the picture before I washed and blocked them so they look a bit wrinkled.  I also always add the colored border once I know if the baby is a boy or girl or what color the nursery will be.  I always like to have a few in my gift closet ready to finish.
 I finished these socks last week.  Did I already post a photo?  I can't remember, I've had so many photo trials recently.  I do know that it is Knit Picks Stroll Tweed in the "Reindeer Heather" colorway.  I used the Hermione Pattern.
 Piper requested some rainbow wristwarmers in the same pattern I used for her Mommy's wristwarmers.  I adapted it a bit to make them smaller to fit her little hands.  I have plenty of yarn left to make her a matching hat.
 Then a pair of plain vanilla socks were finished on Friday, made with Knit Picks Felici in the "River Rock" colorway.
 These are my current socks on the needles that I began Friday night.  I'm using the Hermione Pattern again and the yarn is Knit Picks Stroll Tweed in the "Heather Thirst" colorway.
 As you can tell, I do both cuffs, then the legs, then turn the heels, the foot and finally the toes.  That way, both socks are done at the same time.  I love that!

We came home from the lake about noon today, (Saturday).  It was SO hot we couldn't stand it and figured we could sit in the AC at home as well as in the trailer. :-)  Plus we decided to go to Applebee's for dinner tonight with Larry & Nita and then we'll go take a swim in their pool at home!

So when I got home, I was going to take a picture of the socks in progress to show you and look who decided to make themselves comfy on my lap.  They do like to snuggle.  Frannie is on the arm of my chair and is 14 years old.  Amelia is by my feet and she's 16 years old.  Both are in amazing shape and act like much younger cats.
Nita bought a wading pool last weekend and this was us at the lake cooling off by dipping our feet in the water.  The beach itself is jam-packed with people so we haven't even been going down there.  I haven't even been in the lake this year.  Sophie is on my lap and I have no idea why I look like I'm 7 months pregnant in this picture.  I do have a belly, but I don't THINK it's that big. :-)
 Larry bought his dream car on Thurday.  He and Dennis have been looking at Corvettes for him for many years now.  This is what he got.  A 2002 Corvette Coupe.  Dennis took it for a spin last night on the highway toward Canada.  We won't say how fast he went!  (That's our gazebo, trailer and my car in the background.)
 Look at that smile!
Not a whole lot of other news.  It's been so hot and smokey that we've been staying inside most of the time.  Not unusual for July and the end of August.  We usually have about 3 weeks of pretty hot weather and then 80's, which is just perfect.  By next Thursday it's supposed to be 85F for the high which will be very welcome.  I really, really don't want to complain, because I would rather have the heat than 3 feet of snow, which I know will come in a few months.  That I REALLY detest.  The yellow jackets have been absolutely terrible and very aggressive this year which I was just told today means a severe winter.  I hope not.

How are all of you?  Although I've experienced technical difficulties with my blog, that still aren't figured out completely, I have been trying to keep up with all of you.  Do any of my readers have blogs that I don't know about?  If I don't comment on your blogs, it means I don't know about it.  Could you leave me a comment or a link in a comment?  I would love to visit you.  I have made so many friends with this blog and I am so grateful for it.

I hope you all have a wonderful week and are enjoying your summer.

"Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweet to the sould and healing to the bones." Proverbs 16:24

Blessings always,
Betsy