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Monday, June 26, 2017

On The Road Again..

On the Road Again, Just Can't Wait to Get on The Road Again....

Yes!  We're finally going to be on our way to see family the day after tomorrow.  We're driving to Omaha, Nebraska.  Dennis is going to try to get off of work an hour or so early so we can get about 5 hours drive time in on Wednesday, stopping for the night around 10:00 p.m. in Whitehall, MT if all goes as planned.  Then on to Omaha over the next two days.  We'll have to make lots of stops for me to get out and walk around to stretch my back, but it will be worth it to see all of our family and PIPER!!  Yes, Mandy and Brad drove 23 1/2 hours straight through on Friday from Maryland to Omaha, so they're already at Grandma's waiting for us.  They have already put an offer in on a house and had it accepted over the weekend, so I know they're hoping to move in very soon and begin this new phase of their lives.  I'm so excited for them and for us to see them!  It's been way too long.

Ellen is staying at our house with Chloe.  She loves her almost as much as we do so no worries on that front.  She'll take care of the house and our baby!  :-)

I have lots and lots and lots of pictures for you today.  I promised photos of the curtains we made for the trailer so here you go!  This is the dinette area with the curtains open.  I've done a bit of redecorating since I took this photo on Thursday.  The angel I showed you in my last post is now hanging below the clock and the clock has been moved higher.  My Instant Pot has a new home and I have some photos on the drawer unit.
Curtains closed.
We took a new loveseat to the trailert a few weeks ago and it's been a big hit with all of our visitors.  On the wall is a cross stitch that says "The Queen's Corner of the World".  I made it about 30 years ago!
Curtains closed.
Here is the back of the trailer with Dennis' and my Lazyboy recliners.
Curtains Closed!
The hallway.  You can see I have angels everywhere.  People know I like them and I get them as gifts.  That's the refrigerator on the right.
The bedroom with a quilt I made a few years ago from leftover fabric.  Please ignore the not very good job of pillow smoothing.  It's hard to lean back in there with my back issues. 
The kitchen area.  We didn't make curtains for this window because it has nice mini-blinds and they would just get dirty quickly.
I hope you enjoyed the little camper tour. I just realized I forgot bathroom photos.  Oops.  It does have a shower, sink and toilet and it's nice sized as well.  We love our little home away from home and the new curtains make it extra cozy at night when they are shut tight.  It also seems to keep it cooler inside when the sun is beating down.

This next picture is one I took while taking Chloe for a walk Friday morning.  I was awed by how blue the sky is next to the pine trees.  That morning the pine smell was so strong.  Days like that I remember just how much I love the Pacific Northwest and all of it's beauty.
A few more angels and a flower pot on our doorstep.  Dennis made these wonderful stairs for us and several other people at the lake.  Much, much better than trailer steps.
Our backyard.
We are fighting these brown spots this year because of the voles.  They keep digging up the grassy area.
Stairs Lori, Paul and Dennis built to the lower area behind our trailers.  We can use that too but have not developed it at all.
We have had some absolutely gorgeous weather.  The park and beach looked like the 4th of July yesterday.  It was SO busy at the beach.
I've called a time-out on my beaded shawl until we return from our trip.  I was off one stitch and had to rip back 6 rows to get back on track.  Doesn't sound bad until you realize that there were over 480 stitches in each row. And it was lace.  And beads.  Enough said.
It is pretty though and I know I'll like it when it's done.  I just don't want to be chasing beads around in the truck.  So I'll work on baby sweaters, socks and mittens on the drive.
One last photo of my lavender blooming at home this morning.  It's grown from a 6 inch plant to over 4 foot in diameter in 4 years!  I'm going to have to divide it soon.  Any tips?
I'm sure this is way too long.  If I still have anyone here, thanks for hanging in there with me!  I won't be able to post while were gone, so I'll plan to do that once we're back home.  Be prepared for Piper photos! Thank you for the tips on Word Press. I think that will be my next project.  Switching over this blog so I can post while away from home.

I hope you are all having a lovely summer, (or winter if that's where you live.)  I'm going to see my girls in a few days!  I'm SO excited.  Can you tell? 

"For the LORD is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations."  Psalm 100:5

I'll be back soon!

Blessings,
Betsy





















Sunday, June 18, 2017

Happy Father' Day!

Hi Everyone~ Another week has passed and it did go by rather quickly.  I spent several days at the lake and several days at home.  I have been knitting, but on a new shawl and baby blanket that are currently at the trailer, (where I'm returning within the hour), and I forgot to photograph them.  Since I can only blog on our home computer I won't be able to show them to you this week.  So, I'll show you a few other items around the house.

Dennis is mowing right now, so I ran out and took a quick photo of the marigolds and rhubarb.  See the first pass of the mower around the rhubarb?  Gosh, that rhubarb just keeps going this year with our cool weather.  I've harvested about 14 one gallon bags from this plant already and it needs picked again!  Yum.  Lori made rhubarb/apple crisp at the lake last night and it was SO good.  We had vanilla bean ice cream with it.  Not weight watcher friendly, but delicious  nonetheless. :-)

The marigolds haven't grown much in recent weeks either because of the cool, wet weather.  That is supposed to change to more summer like over the next few days so maybe they'll be huge by the end of the week!  Ha!
Friday afternoon I was sitting in the trailer knitting during a big windstorm and I heard a knock on the door.  Our neighbor a few doors down was coming to visit and brought me this beautiful folk angel as a gift. Isn't she lovely?  We have the best friends.
She is joining some of my other favorites on the Hoosier cabinet.  The purple sheep I received as a blogger gift and my knitting bunny live there.  A depression glass plate that belonged to my Grandma and a cookbook full of vintage things too.
I am so glad we found this cabinet a year or two ago.  It's one of my favorite pieces of furniture.
Yesterday we made curtains for the trailer.  The accordion blinds that came with the camper are breaking, one by one and they are SO expensive to replace. They do get a lot of use and most everyone is or has experienced the same problem with their blinds.  I much prefer the cozier look of drawn curtains at night anyway.  Nita brought out her portable sewing machine.  I cut the fabric, Nita sewed the hems or rod pockets, whichever was needed.  (I don't have a cabinet large enough for my Instant Pot, so it  has to sit out in the open.  I'm not fond of the look of it, but I don't want to give up the convenience of the Instant Pot either.)
Dennis is a wonderfully good presser.  He pressed the panels before I cut them and again after they were sewn before we hung them up.  Lori and Paul contributed the little ironing board and iron to the endeavor.  It was a group effort!
This was Larry's contribution.  :-)  He held Sophie.  I forgot to get a photo of the curtains all hung so I'll do that this week for you too.  The loveseat Larry is sitting on is the one that we brought from home last month.  We gave our other sofa to another couple at the lake who had an identical one that had had a lot of use.  We rarely used ours because we have our lazy-boy recliners to sit in.  Now, we have four recliners and our trailer has become the gathering place on evenings when it is too cold or rainy to sit outside. 
Yesterday I made Thanksgiving in a Crockpot for all six of us, Paul, Lori, Larry, Nita, Dennis and myself.  It was really good.  The recipe was given to me last week by a friend at the lake.  It was a cool day and after making curtains all day, it was nice to have dinner ready for us in the evening.

Here's the recipe.

In a large crockpot layer but DON'T stir together.

4 Chicken Breasts
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of celery OR chicken soup. (I used celery and it was delicious.)
2 cans drained green beans
2 boxes stuffing mix
extra sage if desired, (I used about 1 tablespoon dried sage.)
1 small can chicken broth, (pour over everything)
french fried onions (Like used for green bean casserole)

Cook on high for 6 hours and then turn to low until you're ready to eat.  I did about 2 extra hours.

Let me know if you try it and like it. :-)

Update:  The physical therapist really worked over my back last Monday and I have been in intense pain ever since.  He said at the time that he was sure my back wasn't broken anymore hence the more intense therapy.  WELL SURPRISE!  They did another x-ray on Tuesday and the bone is still broken with NO healing at all no wonder the things he did hurt so bad.  Basically my back feels like it is on fire all of the time now.  I see my Primary Care doctor tomorrow to discuss options.  I would appreciate any prayers you could send up.  This is definitely getting old and we're planning a 26 hour drive at the end of the month with another 26 hours back home.

This is why Nita was a sweetheart and sewed my curtains for me.  There is no way I could possibly sit at the sewing machine that long.  I appreciate her doing that for me so much.  Just as I appreciate each one of you who asks how I'm doing and shows such love and concern for me.  Thank you, thank you. :-)

"Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." Luke 6:38

My friends, you have all given love and caring to me and I appreciate it very much.  I hope you all have a most wonderful week.

Blessings,
Betsy





Sunday, June 11, 2017

Sunday, Sunday

Happy Sunday!  It's a beautiful sunny afternoon here in Spokane.  It's 65F and so beautifully calm and serene here.  Dennis is outside mowing the yard and I'm inside doing laundry so tomorrow I can go back to the lake!  Yesterday we were woken up again by the carbon monoxide detector in the trailer.  We knew there was nothing wrong, as the same thing had happened earlier in the week and we had all of the windows open.  Upon further investigation we found that the devices are programmed to sound the alarm intermittedly after 60 months of use.  We've had the trailer since 2012...it's now 2017 so it was time to buy a new one.  Dennis called around and the only place we could find one in stock was in Post Falls, Idaho, so off we went.  We drove to Spokane and dropped Chloe off at the house and then drove to Idaho to buy the detector.  There was no putting it off because it's hardwired to the electrical system.  We couldn't just disconnect it because then nothing worked, apparently it's a safety feature.  **sigh**  Then it was back to the trailer to install it.  I'm so glad I have a handy husband.  It did take the majority of the day though, and of course we had to take some time to look at the new trailers while we were there. :-)  He also did all of the mowing and trimming for our lot and four of our neighbors last night after the other repairs.

Now everything is working again...did I mention the shower knob didn't work when I tried to take a shower yesterday morning either?  At least we were already going to the parts store, so we bought a new one.  Everything is made of plastic to keep the weight down in these trailers and since we spend so much time at the lake, it all gets used a lot.  We do try to take good care of everything and do routine maintenance.  In fact, just last weekend Dennis spent all day Saturday washing the roof and resealing around all of the vents and skylights just as a preventative measure.  He is such a hard worker.

Now to reveal my Amulet Shawl.  I finished it last week and wore it to church last Sunday.  What do you think?  I absolutely love it.  It's hard to see the beads in these pictures, but it has over 500 beads knitted into it.
In fact, I loved the pattern and the way the author wrote it so much, I immediately cast-on for another Helen Stewart pattern, the Asana Shawl.  Here it is in it's beginning stages.
This was it last night just before I put the first row of beads on it.  I can only work on it when I'm alone because now that I'm past the garter stitch section each row is counted and needs to be completely accurate.
Friday I woke up to a flat tire so off I went to get it fixed.  Dennis was already at work so it was up to me!  Here I am in the waiting room of the tire shop while the tire is being fixed.  I finished another pair of mittens while I waited.  There was a nail in my tire!  I have no idea where that came from but they fixed it at no charge so all is well.
That made two pair for this week.  I need to up my game on these mittens. I find I am very distracted by all of this shawl knitting and I don't want to make mittens anymore.  :-)
On Wednesday I was wandering around our local yarn shop, Paradise Fibers, which many of you know of since most of their business is online.  I saw a lonely skein of 75% merino/25% nylon undyed fingering weight yarn on a shelf all by itself.  Needless to say I bought it and promptly dyed it.  It was my first attempt at dying yarn and I must say I really enjoyed it.  I used a very easy method using Kool-Aid.  This was Mango-Mango flavored Kool-Aid that I had had in my cupboard since our kids were little!  Who knows how old that stuff was but it worked for dying yarn!  I love the pretty peach color it turned out and the tonal qualities were exactly what I wanted but I never thought I could end up with.  I don't know if I'll ever dye yarn again, but I sure have fallen in love with this skein.  It will make a nice pair of socks or a shawl, I haven't decided yet.
I bought new curtain panels at Shopko today to make curtains for the trailer.  The ones that came with the trailer are just plain icky and I've never liked them.  Would you believe they are GLUED to the valances?  I was going to buy material at JoAnn's and make the new curtains, but then, when we went to buy the curtain rods I saw these.  The perfect color for the trailer to match the valances and on sale too.  Normally $21.99 a panel, on sale for $7.99!  You can't beat that price.  I bought all they had and hope it's enough.  Worst case, I have to make a different color for the bedroom as I think this is plenty for the living room/hallway.  Much less expensive than the material I was looking at, they're room darkening to block sunlight AND most of the seams will be done for me already! ( I will be cutting them up to fit the trailer windows.)
We got new gravel on the road by our trailer at the lake last week.  It's very welcome as the dirt was making lots of dust when cars drove by.  Please ignore the trash cans across the road, it was garbage pickup day when I took the picture.
The maintenance staff has been very busy getting the cabins all gussied up for the summer crowds.  This winter was a hard one for everyone and everything, including the buildings on the grounds.
Here's my handsome Hubby replacing the outside shower hose on Larry & Nita's trailer.  He does most of the maintenance on their trailer too since they are somewhat older than we are and have a difficult time doing it.  This guy is amazing.  He works 12 hours a day/five days a week without complaint and then does everything else he does for me and everyone else too.  I am blessed to have him as my husband and I never, ever take him for granted.
I think that's about all of my news.  I'm still trying to adjust to my medication and find myself exhausted a lot.  We're planning to drive to Omaha at the end of June to spend a week with family and friends.  It's a 25-26 hours drive each way, so please pray that it is doable for me with my back, etc.  I'm determined to go because Mandy, Brad and Piper will be there by then too.  I can't wait to see everyone.  My sister, my brothers and Dennis' family all live there too. 

I hope you're all enjoying your summer, (or winter if that's the part of the world you're in.)

Jesus replied, "Love the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all of your soul and with all of your mind.  This is the first and greatest commandment."   Matthew 22:37-38

Until next time!
Blessings,
Betsy










Wednesday, May 31, 2017

We Survived the Garage Sale!

Hello everyone!  It's been awhile since I posted, although I have been trying to keep up with everyone's blogs.  The garage sale was a big success and I never could have done it without my wonderful husband.  He lifted, toted and carried everything around.  He even made several deliveries to people's homes when they didn't have a large enough vehicle for their purchases.  He loaded everything that didn't sell into my CRV and I took it to the Goodwill the last day of the sale.  When I got home, he had the tables down and almost everything back to normal.  We kept our pledge of not taking anything back into the house once it came out with the exception of a toolbox and my bicycle.  Those didn't go to the Goodwill because we're taking them to Mandy and Brad in June.  So technically we're not keeping them!  :-)

Last weekend was the Memorial Day weekend and we spent it at the lake.  Dennis drove in on Saturday to mow the lawn and get a haircut and then we came back for church on Sunday before returning to the lake for a few more days.  We are so lucky to be so close to town at our camper.  This is how it looked on Saturday.  We were blessed with warm temperatures and blue, blue skies all weekend.  The boaters, skiers, jet skiers and swimmers were having fun on the water.  Dennis drove the boat while our friend Paul skied a few times.  He said the water was the warmest he ever remembers it being on Memorial Day.  That's our trailer on the right.  Dennis built the steps for me that are much better than the ones that come with the trailers. We have them on both the front and back doors.  They were so popular that he's built several more sets for other people in the campground!  My husband can do anything!
Friday night Dennis and I took a walk to the beach and this was the sight that met our eyes as the sun set.  Isn't it beautiful?
Sunday night we had a big campfire and enjoyed the sunset from the campsite.
The moon was just a tiny crescent.
Five pairs of mittens were finished  during the garage sale.
And a baby blanket.
A second baby blanket was finished this weekend, but I still have the border to finish.  I typically wait until I know if it's a boy or a girl before putting the last row on, but since these two are bound for the Crisis Nursery, I'll put a border on in the next few days.  Sorry they are wrinkled, I haven't washed or blocked them yet.
My Amulet Shawl was down to the last 6 rows when I took this photo, but since then I have finished the knitting and am now casting off.  That will take awhile because there are well over 400 stitches on the needles.
Here is a bit closer look at the beading.  I have really enjoyed knitting this shawl.  I have three more of her patterns and hope to knit them in the future as well.  After I finish binding off, I will wash and block it.  I'm looking forward to seeing how the lacework blocks out.  Selfishly, I think I will be keeping this for myself.
On Monday, Memorial Day I was sitting in my chair at the lake and happened to look up.  This bald eagle was soaring round and round over our campsite.  It literally took my breath away.  Don't you think it was quite a fitting tribute to the meaning of the holiday?
Last Monday night, Dennis and I were alone in the campground and we were sitting on the loveseat looking at the lake and watching the fish jump.  All of the sudden, an eagle swooped down INTO the water, all of the way INTO the water and didn't come up for a long time.  We thought he had drowned!  Then, up he came, and started swimming.  I have never seen an eagle swim before.  Apparently the fish he had caught was so big he couldn't carry it.  He proceeded to swim all of the way across the bay towards where we know they nest every year.  We watched his huge wings propel him 4-5 feet with every powerful stroke.  It was like he was doing the breaststroke!  I have truly never seen anything so awesome in nature before.  So beautiful!

And to finish up the photos, may I present my precious granddaughter, Miss Piper Krumel, student of the week!  Notice she wants to be a Princess when she grows up. :-) Grandpa thought she already is a Princess.  Ha!
I had my semi-annual visit with the cardiologist's office last week.  They called last night and the electro-physician (fancy name for the guy who inserted the pm), had reviewed all of my pacemaker downloads since it was put in two years ago.  To make a long story short, as a result of the review, instead of taking me off some of my medications as I had hoped, they have increased them.  So frustrating.  That's even after losing almost 25 pounds since January.  Not easy to do with next to no exercise because of my back.  Plus the doctor wants me to DECREASE my walking.  They don't believe my pacemaker is causing my issues with tachycardia, (increased heartrate), but my own heart is doing it.  Don't get me wrong. I am very grateful for the medications and I am hopeful that it will help and I will once again be allowed to fly soon to see my kids.

We're still planning to make the over 3000 mile round trip next month to see our family in Nebraska, including Miss Piper and her parents.  I'm really, really, really looking forward to that.

All in all, life is good.  I have a husband who loves me and spoils me completely, (I don't know why), kids and grandkids that I love and I think love me too.  :-) I  have a safe home and can move about freely in my country, which is more than a lot of people have.  I AM grateful.  My prayer is that all of you have lives of peacefulness and contentment.  I am very grateful for each one of you who visits me here.  I hope you have a most wonderful remainder of the week and a blessed weekend.

In this increasingly scary world these are some words that I hold fast to.

"May the LORD bless you and keep you; may the LORD make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; may the LORD turn His face toward you and give you peace."  Numbers 6:24-26

and

"Cast your anxiety on Him because He cares for you." 1 Peter 5:7

Blessings always,
Betsy









Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Still Chilly...er, COLD!

Hello again from the hinterlands where the furnace is still running apace.  The temperature only climbed to 44 yesterday.  I know, I know.  I've been reading blogs.  Most of you had your AC on for awhile already.  But not here in Washington.  Here on the normally dry side of the Cascade mountains, we have run well over our normal yearly rainfall totals...as of last month!  And it poured Monday.  And it dumped buckets of rain yesterday.  All day.  And it is supposed to rain today.  So I worked on this....
and this,
and this,
and more of this,
before giving up at this,
and settling in here for the afternoon.  Knitting with my favorite podcasts and bundled up in lots of blankets to ward off the chill.
Yes, my poppets.  We're having the infamous garage sale on Friday and Saturday.  Dennis is taking Friday off so he can help carry all the big stuff from the shed in the backyard.  We have SO MUCH STUFF!  I guess that's what happens after 39 years of marriage.  All of that "stuff" you see in the garage?  You can't even tell inside the house that anything is gone!  The inside of the house looks the same.  So do the closets.  I think the void from whence all of the stuff came, was automatically filled overnight by some evil packrat who doesn't like empty spaces.  Oh well.  It's supposed to be in the low 70's both days so hopefully we'll have a nice turn-out.

And what was I knitting on yesterday you ask?  It's my Amulet shawl.  Once I got past the annoying hiccup of starting the cream section, I moved on quickly to the first lace section using the beautiful yarn I received as a prize from Knit Styles Etsy shop. 
Those beads.  Yes, they are gorgeous, but it takes forever to do a row with beads as it means stopping every 3 stitches and getting a bead, putting it on a crochet hook, looping it onto the stitch, putting the stitch back on the needle and then knitting it.  Every. Three. Stitches.  And at this point there are well over 300 stitches per round and it increases every round!  But although it's very, very slow going, I'm enjoying it immensely.  This may be my main project for awhile and that's fine with me.
I did make 2 pair of mittens which I forgot to photograph and I put a few rows on a sock, but this is my main knitterly love at the moment.  I do think something easier, needing much less concentration will be worked on during the garage sale.

Kris from the blog "Simplify," sent me this beautiful card, just because.  Don't you just love the happy flowers? Thank you Kris!
My rocking chair on the deck is waiting patiently for warmer weather for me to sit and rock, read my Bible, and drink a cup of tea in the mornings.
The grass is so green and lush from all of the rain.  That's our little flowering pear tree that we had to replace last year after the big windstorm that blew it's big brother down onto the fence.  Our neighbors had the little wishing well in the trash pile last year, so Dennis rescued it and painted it for me.  I love it!
The rhubarb is going gangbusters with the cool, wet weather.  I've harvested several times already and it needs it again.
And one last photo.  This is my Mom, sister Melanie, and I on our way to church, probably around 1965-1966 or so.  Again, Mom made our dresses and I love the knee socks.  My sister just lives about 3 blocks from here now and has lived there for at least 40 years, (I think it's been 40 years, I lose track of time).  One brother is just 6 blocks away and another brother just on the other side of the river.  Melanie sent me a house listing just one block over from here that just came on the market yesterday.  Guess where she wants us to move when Dennis retires?

The most recent news is that I am definitely Vitamin D deficient so they started me on mega doses of Vitamin D on Monday.  I have felt kind of yucky ever since.  Is that normal?  Tired, tummy upset, and barely sleeping at all.  I keep thinking it's just a supplement so there shouldn't be any side effects, but it is 50,000 IU in one little tiny pill!  Only one pill a week.  I'm told that your D3 levels should be 29 or higher and mine was 18.  Let's hope this is the reason for the back not healing and I'll soon be on the mend.

I thank you ALL for your sweet comments, prayers and well wishes.  I feel like I've been all "doom and gloom" for awhile now and I really want that to change.  Hopefully this will do the trick.

And now, I have more garage sale "stuff" to do.  I have to make a sign for the main road and take some more small things downstairs.  This garage sale is a LOT of work.  I don't know how people do them all of the time.

I hope you all have an absolutely wonderful Wednesday my sweet friends!

"Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see."  Hebrews 11:1

Blessings always,
Betsy