Follow by Email

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Can you say Hot?

Goodness it's hot here!  103F yesterday with more of the same forecast for a few more days.  I came home from the lake Monday but we drove out to water the grass and plants last night after a dinner meeting Hubby and I went to.  

I think I may have neglected to show you the beautiful hats Barbara sent for the babies at the local hospital.  Doesn't she do beautiful work? I love the rainbow of colors.
Sunday afternoon we played in thelake to try and beat the heat. Here's a picture of Hubby getting ready to catch the frisbee. He and Larry start playing frisbee and before you know it they have a half dozen or more kids joining in. Great fun!
See that dot in the middle of the lake?  That's Hubby and Paul canoeing across the lake. They are FAST!  It only took them about 10 minutes to go across and   back.  It's not a tiny lake. This photo is zoomed in to give you an idea of how far it is.
Pipers sweater is coming along.  Most of the parts are done now.

The sleeves.
The back.
Left and Right fronts.  You can see by the needles that I'm working on the button band.  Hopefully it will be finished today.
I've been out and about running errands this morning.  We had a bucketful of pennies, dimes and quarters. We just empty our pockets and throw it in-when it's full I take it to the bank where they put it in the machine counter.  Then I deposit it in savings.  It was almost $50.00 this morning! Not bad for spare change.  They don't take a cut like those coin  machines you see at the stores either. We get to keep it all.  Yeah!

Then it was off to the car dealership to get the key fob battery replaced for Hubby's truck.  They were very nice and less than 5 minutes later I was on my way.  Next up is an appointment in an hour to get a canopy/topper, (whatever you call it in your part of the country), put on the truck.  We're looking forward to a few weekend camping trips in it yet this year.  I'm ahead of schedule so I found a McDonald's close to the installer.  I have a diet coke, my knitting and a book so I'm all set!
Please pray we get a break from the heat and some gentle rain here in the Northwest.  There are fires burning everywhere with new ones popping upevery day from the heat.  I don't remember having such high temperatures here for so long a time in the 20 years we've been here.

I hope you're all having a wonderful day wherever you may be.  Remember to be a blessing to someone today.  It will make your day a precious one too.

Blessings,
Betsy

Friday, July 25, 2014

Sunny Friday

Happy Friday to you all!  It's a gorgeous sunny day here in Spokane and that is truly a blessing.  Wednesday was a terrible storm that knocked out power to over 38,000 people.  Many are still without phones or electricity.  We never lost either one, but the winds howled all day yesterday at over 35mph.  In my infinite wisdom I had chosen yesterday and today to have a yard sale.  So far I have made a whopping $47.25!  Now I am reminded of why I don't do garage sales.  I have had no customers this morning at it is 9:00-unusual.  If it doesn't pick up I'll take everything except furniture to the Goodwill at noon.

Monday night Hubby had customers from Pretoria, South Africa in town so we took them out to dinner.  He has stayed with them several times when he was in S. Africa.  Such lovely people.  Here we are at Clinkerdaggers a beautiful restaurant on the Spokane River at the Spkane Falls.  In the spring you get wet sitting at these tables from the force of the falls from snow melt in the mountains around town.

From left to right-Hubby, Me, Beulah, Johan.  We had a wonderful time with them.  I've heard so much about them and it's nice to put faces with their names.  I think we have made some friends for life.  They want us Togo see them and take a photography safari.  No shooting animals with guns, just cameras. It sounds great, but with kids living all over the place, most of our traveling is to see them, with Hawaii thrown in every few years for fun!  :-)
The view of the small Falls from the table. The bigger falls are almost vertical and HIGH.
Monday was Beulah's birthday and I didn't find out until about 15 minutes before leaving for dinner.  Thankfully I had a set of three washcloth made and bundled. Instant gift.
The next few photos are pictures of the garden at the lake.  Carrots and lettuce.  The deer have been helping themselves to the lettuce with regularity but there still has been enough that I haven't bought any in over a month now.  You can see a bit of the green beans there on the right. There are three rows and we've had beans for dinner several times too.
Lots of different squash!  And corn in the background.
I thought this squash blossom was pretty with water in the middle of the blossom.
Cherry tomatoes.
I know compared to most of your gardens this one is far, far, behind in production but as I've said before, we have a short growing season being so close to Canada.  It was 41F this morning for goodness sakes!

My view Tuesday.
Flowers behind the camper.
Tiny little flowers.
Bigger flowers.
Tiny again!
I don't know the names of any of the flowers.  I just water and enjoy them.  I know.  I know.  It's sad isn't it?

I'm working on the sweater for Miss Piper and just finished the back this morning.  I'll do the left front next.  It's a work of love so she can feel Grandma snuggling with her way over in Washington DC.

The house has sold in Portland, inspection done and now they're just waiting for results of that and then closing.  Mandy has given notice at work and at daycare.  I'll be going over next Friday to stay until they get moved from the house.  The two of them will stay with us until a house is found out east.  I wish it could be for a long, long time, but I know their family needs to be together.  I want to soak up all the time I can with them.
In the lenfth of to me it took to put this blog post togetherI haven't had one customer!  I definitely think I'll be packing things up early and heading to the lake!

Many blessings to you all and I'll be back soon.

Betsy

Friday, July 18, 2014

Around The World Blog Hop

I've been asked to participate in the "Around the World" Blog Hop".  I have never done this before so please bear with me.  :-)

I love to travel.  That's a good thing, because I have children who live scattered around the U.S. and, as most of you know, our youngest is in Japan.  I've been many places including Japan, England, France, Canada as well as all over the U.S.  And although I've met lovely people in all the places I've been, I have met some of the nicest people I know right here through this world of blogging.  There are people who have helped me find yarns and threads when I needed certain materials for special projects.  There are people who donate yarn and finished objects to charities I'm involved with.  There are people who pray for my family and myself.  There are even people I've met "with skin on!"  

Three of these "skin on" ladies live in the Portland, OR area and I visit them everytime I visit my daughter and her family. We usually have lunch together and talk and share for hours at a time.  One of these special ladies is Gracie Saylor (grayseasailor-onesaylorslog.blogspot.com) who is one of the most loving and gentle women I have the priviledge to know.  She lives in a wonderful log home with ducks and a pond, along with her daughters and their families just outside of Portland in Gresham, OR which is in the shadow of the beautiful Mt. Hood.  She does beautiful crochet and knitting, writes, draws and loves the Lord with all of her heart.  She has even stayed the night with me as she was traveling through Spokane.  Please go visit her blog.  I know you'll come away encouraged and blessed.

1. What am I working on?

I just finished a "Wonderful Wallaby" sweater for little Miss Piper, (my granddaughter).  After this photo was taken I added a button with a crocheted loop closure at the neck.
A dishcloth.  I usually have one on the needles as they are nice to have handy for when you might need a hostess gift in a hurry.
And here is another sweater for Piper begun just today.  This one will be a white cardigan.  She has outgrown the one I made for her in size 9 month.  She's 22 months and still wearing it, although the sleeves are getting a bit short.  Her Mom calls it the magical sweater that just keeps fitting!  A white cardigan is perfect with her little summer dresses she wears to church. 
I have also been crocheting around donated squares for a charity that I'm a "square joiner" for.  We then donate the completed blankets all over the world.

2. How does my work differ from others in it's genre?

Most of the patterns that I use are common ones or free from Ravelry, but I give most of what I make away to different charities around the world.  One that is close to my heart is making baby hats, burial gowns/buntings and blankets for a local hospital.  I also make items for the Pine Ridge Indian reservation as well as several other groups.  The biggest project I have undertaken was collecting items for the earthquake/tsunami victims in Japan.  Our son Alex and I ended up taking over 3000 handmade items to the shelters and distributing them to people in need.  It was a very humbling experience and made me appreciate the beautiful home God has blessed me with.
3. Why do I write/create what I do?

I don't write. I'm not a good writer although I do enjoy sharing with you all here on my little blog.  I'm so glad you visit and read my ramblings.  I knit & crochet because I love it and I love to give gifts to people.  Most people seems to like homemade items.  My brain also focuses better when my hands are busy.  I had a stroke when I was 37 years old-17 years ago!!  The part of my brain affected was short term memory and it really helps me to concentrate on things if my hands are busy.  I don't understand it but everyone who knows me, knows that I ALWAYS have a project with me.  Even during sermon time at church!

My Grandma taught me to crochet when I was 7 years old.  I love it and I love to give it all away.

(This is a doily I made for Teresa Kasner, uanother "skin on" friend in Portland, for her piano.)


4. How does my writing/creative process work?

Hmmmmm.  I'm not sure how to answer this one. I find a pattern I like and off I go!!

And now I would like to introduce Taci Simmons.  She is one of the three bloggers I meet in Portland.  Taci lives in a suburb of Portland called Happy Valley and Taci is indeed a happy person.  She is originally from Brazil and is a Social Worker for the State of Oregon.  She is married with two teenage children.  Taci and her husband just moved into the dream home they had built with a view of Mt. Hood.  She has a beautiful giving and sweet spirit and I know you'll feel the same way about her.  The blankets, hats and scarves among other things she creates, are just amazing.

Taci has agreed to post an Around The World  Blog Post next Monday, July 28, 2014.  You can find her at (tacistudio.blogspot.com).  Have you visited her blog?  Please do, you won't be sorry.

I hope you all have a lovely Monday and I'll be back to visit soon.

Edited to add: I'm not sure why this post has Friday's date since it is after 10:00 at night on Sunday Pacific Time and already Monday for most of you.  Blogger must be at it again!!!

Blessings,
Betsy

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Some Finishes and still HOT!

Hello my friends.  I hope you're all enjoying your summer as much as I have been.  I have to say though, that this is one of the hottest summers we've had that I can remember.  It was 102 F on our deck today in the shade.  That's really unusual for us and now we are under a Fire Weather Warning.  We have several fires burning here in Washington State and conditions are perfect for even more.

It was so hot that I even came home from the lake a day earlier than I had planned.  Swimming is great, but as soon as you get out of the water the heat takes your breath away.

I have managed to finish a few projects though and so I'll take you on a tour of my most recent makes.  First is Pipers sweater.  It's finished!  I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out.  This picture was before blocking but it gives you a good idea.  The pattern is the "Wondeful Wallaby".  It's a great pattern and fun to read, but it has you jumping around the booklet quite a bit.  I actually had to go online and find some help from people who had made it before.  Now that I have made one, I think future sweaters would go much quicker.
The pattern doesn't call for a button, but I think I'll add a crocheted loop and a button closure at the top of the placket to keep out cold winds.  I also changed the placket and hood trim from garter stitch to seed stitch.  I think it's nicer for some reason.  I like the way the pattern has ribbing round the neck to draw it in a bit to keep warmer.
I finished a baby blanket that had been on the needles for a couple of weeks.  I would pick it up when I needed mindless knitting.  It's just the Grandma's Dishcloth pattern with size 9 needles and baby yarn.  This will go to the hospital for a new baby.
Closer look so you can see the baby blue color better.
This dishcloth is also about the same blue color but for some reason photographed gray!  I like this pattern.  It has lots of ridges for good scrubbing power.
Also done is a sweater I made for World Vision Knit for Kids.  They provide the pattern and you MUST make this same pattern.  You can choose the yarn.  The sweaters are distributed around the world where there are children in need.  If I make it again I will definitely use a different yarn.  This yarn is just plain ugly and I hated knitting with it.  It was like knitting with plastic.  I think it's Red Heart although the label is long gone.  I'm embarrassed to admit that I"ve had this on needles for almost a year, I hated it so much!  The preference is acrylic yarn for ease of washing.  I may try it again with the crocheted version.  It is the same general style, just with crochet instead of knitting.
I told you I had an angel who has been sending me yarn.  These six skeins are from the box I recieved last week....
and the next two pictures are the box I recieved this week.  Look at all of the sock yarn!
All of this yarn is from Barbara way out on the East Coast.  She also makes hats and sends them to me for the babies at Holy Family Hospital.  Isn't that just the sweetest thing to do?  I'm very grateful for her kind heart and generous spirit.  Thank you so much Barbara.  Now to decide what to make with the yarn?

The next picture is a huge spaghetti salad.  It doesn't look like much does it?  Until you realize the bowl is 7 1/2 inches high and 12 inches across.  Some of you may have the same bowl from Tupperware.  It's HUGE!  There are over 2 lbs. of spaghetti, 7 tomatoes, 2 cans of olives, 2 onions, 2 cucumbers, 1 big green pepper, 1 block of cheddar cheese and 5 bottles of Italian salad dressing in it!

We have two funerals at church this weekend.  One is Friday and one Saturday.  We're providing a meal for the family and friends afterwards for both funerals so I decided to make one huge salad and split it into two bowls for the two dinners.  It's really yummy and I hope the families like it.  Hubby loves this salad and it's perfect for hot weather.  You can also add salami and it could be a complete summertime meal.
We're still waiting on a buyer for Brad and Mandy's house.  There was a promising prospect earlier this week but that seems to have fallen through.  Please pray for a sale soon.  It's hard on all of them to be apart.  Mandy says for the past three days Piper has gone to Brad's pillow on the bed and patted it saying "Daddy, Daddy".  So sad.  She misses her Daddy.  Facetime is just not the same as being there.

And now, it's past 10:30 and I need to find my own pillow.  I washed the sheets this morning from both our bed here at home and the camper and hung them on the clothesline to dry.  It was so hot they were dry in less than 15 minutes!  I love the smell of sheets hung outside and believe it give sweet dreams.  :-)

I hope you all have a lovely week and I'll be back to visit soon.

Blessings,
Betsy

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Hot, Hot, Hot

My oh my! What a week and a half I've had. Fun times, but very busy.  In the middle of it all I've been working a row or two at a time on Piper's Wonderful Wallaby sweater.  I'm almost to the neck ribbing and then I'll knit the hood. And viola!  It will be done. This is really a quick knit, even though it's taken me almost two weeks.  I really haven't done much crafting at all for that length of time.

Now that it's almost done though, I'm thinking the color is much more boy than girl.  My thought process was that it would be a great fall color for her when she's living in D.C. this fall.  Also, if they have another baby someday, (this is a Grandma talking, remember?), and it turns out to be a boy he could wear it too.  That's why I didn't choose a "girl" color.  I may just have to make her another one.  She loves red so that could be an option. Any thoughts out there?
I think this just looks HaPpY.  That doily looks difficult but it's really not too bad.  It only took a short time to complete.
Look what came in the mail for me from Tammy at "T's Daily Treasures" over on my sidebar. She lives in an exotic locale on the other side of the world. That's my teaser for you. Go ahead. Check out her blog.  I know you'll be glad you did.   I love this beautiful doily and I'm so honored that she thought of me.  I think I'll take it to the trailer where I can enjoy it all summer and then I'll find a place of honor for it at home this fall.
I also got a box in the mail today with 6 skeins of beautiful yarn from Barbara waaaaay back east. I wanted to show you a picture but my camera battery died.  I'll give you more info next post and show you a picture. I'll also tell you about sweet Barbara and her generous heart.  Don't forget to come back and visit again.  :-)

This is my big brother Roger and his wife Rachel.  This was his first visit to see us since we moved to Spokane almost 21 years ago.  He lives in Iowa so it was a long trip for him.  I never knew Roger well as he is quite a bit older than I am and was away in the Navy before I was old enough to know him at all.  We talked more in the past few days than we have in our entire lives and we learned a LOT about each other.  A few tears were shed. There were lots of hugs and I was truly sad to see them leave this morning.  They just bought a new truck and camper and promise to return soon.  Roger was a trucker for over 40 years and I'm amazed he's still enjoying pulling that 28 foot camper all around the States after all the driving he's done over the years.  They were in Arkansas last month visiting Rachel's family so it seems they are enjoying retirement.
This is their truck and trailer.  Sorry about the blurry picture. I took it through the screen in the window.
This is his toy too.  He carries it in the back of the trailer.
And this is what we did yesterday.  Yep.  That's me squinting into the sun on the back of that motorcycle.  We took a ride up to Mt. Spokane.  It's been over 30 years since I've been on a motorcycle and I had a blast!!!!  Fun times!  I guess I'm not as old as I thought.  :-)
See those clouds In the picture above?  They aren't really clouds at all, it's smoke from a wildfire just a few miles away.  In fact, Hubby and I looked at a house just last month that we wanted to buy but it sold before we could make an offer. That house and all neighboring areas have been evacuated.  This is a reminder to me of why we always decide to stay in town instead of buying an acreage outside of Spokane.  There are way too many forest and wildfires.

This is Nikki, Roger and Rachel's dog.  She was a wonderful houseguest and got along well with Chloe and Mandy's cats who are staying with us.  She was a "found" dog who was wandering the street so we're not sure what she is but she is REALLY smart.  She sure loves her Mom and Dad and really likes to ride in the truck on her pillow.
I snatched this recipe from Jennifer at Thistlebear blog. (Also on my sidebar).  It's really easy and light. Both Roger and Rachel are diabetic so I used sugar free whipped cream.  Just slice up an angel food cake and lay in the dish. Cover with whipped cream and decorate with sliced strawberries and blueberries.  So good and easy for a HOT summer day which we have been having.  90's all week and 102 forecast for the weekend.
Sorry this is so long for you to read.  Hopefully things will calm down a bit for a little while.  I'm looking forward to playing in the water at the lake this weekend to cool off.  I hope you all have similar plans to keep cool where you are.

Blessings my friends and I pray you all have a safe and wonderful weekend.

Betsy

Sunday, July 6, 2014

My week with Piper.

Hello friends!  After a weeklong internet absence to play with the most precious one year old around I'm back to visit with you.  Grab a cup of tea, coffee, or a diet pop and sit back and chat a bit with me.

Are you ready for some Piper pictures?  You've come to the right place. Here we go on a full stop tour of this most precious little girl.

So sweet.
She was saying "yay!" After we finished singing a song.  Piper and I sing a lot together and she has definite favorites.
Playing in the sunshine on the patio.  This little wagon cost less than $5.00 and has been through three Grandkids now.  Not a bad investment.
Miss Piper gives the best massages. Seriously. She puts lotion on your legs and arms and rubs just right.  She even massages each toe.  Please don't look at the messy room, just concentrate on her serious and earnest face.  I'm not kidding, she could give those girls that do pedicures a run for their money!
We went to the lake for the fourth and had a barbecue with Neal and Jenny.  Paul, Lori, Larry and Nita all went to the big barbecue that the resort put on but we grilled burgers here at the trailer and had all the "fixings" too.  Watermelon, potato salad, baked beans, chips.  Way too much food.

Piper was all dressed for the day in her American Sweetheart outfit that Grandpa bought for her.  She definitely took a liking to the golf cart.  We went on lots of rides around the park.
A fun thing that lots of people do here is decorate their boats and carts for the fourth.  There is even a boat parade.  I took pictures of it but they didn't turn out for some reason.  One boat was decorated like a tiki hut but most had lots of flags and buntings.

How do you like our golf cart? We had fun driving around in it.
Cupcakes I made for everyone.  Red velvet cake, whipped vanilla icing and sprinkles.  Yum.
Piper loved this little chair that Lori has here for their granddaughter.  It's the perfect size.
Our picnic table all set and ready for the food.
Mandy and Piper returned to Portland today with their dog, but left the two cats with us.  She didn't want to make that drive again with the cats.  :-)  We're praying that the house will sell quickly so that they can join Brad in Washington D.C.  They are all really missing each other.  As soon as the house sells I'll go to Portland to help her with a garage sale, (and see Teresa, Gracie and Taci of course.). Then they will come stay with us until a new house is bought.  I will probably fly with them for the move to help Mandy with the two cats, dog and Piper.  The company is packing them up and moving them and the cars while they fly to DC.

I am NOT looking forward to them living so far away, but I also know that their little family needs to be together more than they need this old Grandma around.  Although, I have to say, Piper and I seem to have a pretty special bond.  Maybe because I've been around her so much and even when I'm not with her in person we FaceTime every day.  I love, love, love that little girl and she gives Grandpa and me the BEST kisses.

On the crafting front I've finished the first little cross stitch animal and will show it to you in the next post since I forgot to take a picture of it.  I also started a "Wonderful Wallaby" sweater for Piper for Christmas.  If it turns out well I may attempt them for Kyleigh and Caleb too.

Hubby and I are back at the lake tonight.  My brother and his friend are on their way here for a visit.  They're traveling from Iowa and have made it to Yellowstone today.  I'll probably be heading home tomorrow or Tuesday to be there when they arrive.  He has never been to see me in the almost 21 years we've lived in Washington.

Thanks for visiting and I pray that you'll have a wonderful and happy day today.

Blessings,
Betsy