Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Almost over...

I don't want to face it, but our time with Alex and Fifi is almost over.  They leave to go back to Tokyo on Thursday morning.  I will be lost.  Completely lost.  I have so enjoyed having voices in the house during the day again.  Fifi is a delight to be around.  She knits!  She knits!  Can you believe that?  I didn't know until two days ago when she asked if I would teach her to knit socks.  Last night I found her some needles, yarn and gave her a pattern.  Alex translated it for her and look here...
She has the cuff and most of the leg of a sock done.  Just since last night.  How wonderful!  She is a graduate of a fashion school in Tokyo and makes all of her own clothes and kimono's.
Fifi also brought me a table top loom from Japan.  She has made several coasters and a couple of mats since she arrived.  I hope I can remember what she's shown me since the instructions are all in Japanese.  The loom just makes small things but it's fun!
This one she added a few small bits of fabric that I had on hand.
This was our first attempt.  My favorite color.  Purple!
She also brought Japanese paper making supplies.  She made these using the purple orchid blooms from the flowers Dennis got while he was in the hospital.  The greens ones are plants and leaves from our yard.
I'm amazed how pretty they are.
Of course the purple is my favorite!  Kyleigh wants me to send her a few pieces of the paper and I think I'll frame some too.
I wish Mandy were here to get to know her better.  I just know they would hit it off.  We do face-time with them everyday and Piper loves her Uncle Alex and Fifi.  I said it earlier, but I'm going to really miss these two when they leave.  I admit that I've cried a lot the last few days and I have tears in my eyes now at the thought of not knowing when I'll see them again.

Enough of that!  Here's the progress on my memory blanket.  Not a lot, but I've been working on other projects too.  I'm in a dishcloth swap on Ravelry and although I have many dishcloths made already, none are in my swap partners favorite colors so I've started a new one.  I have a pair of socks started.  A mystery gift for Mandy that I can't talk about on here because she reads my blog.  Hi Mandy!  Anyway, I have been hopping around on different things and don't have anything complete except two pairs of mittens this week.
These two have been having lots of fun playing.  Alex bought a drone on Amazon for his business and he and Dennis have been flying it around our back yard while learning to control the thing.  Lots of laughter and fun.  It was wonderful to have one of the kids actually home for Mother's Day.  We facetimed with Jamie & Mandy and the grandkids though and also with Dennis' Mom in Nebraska.
Alex and Fifi went to Helena, Montana to visit Jamie's family Friday night and Saturday.  Uncle Alex took Caleb to the skatepark and gave him some pointers.  No skating for Alex because of his foot, but he was still able to be a good coach.  The stitches come out of his foot tomorrow and they fly home the next day.  Fifi saw lots of mountains and beautiful scenery on the drive and they all had a great time.
Gracie asked me about the sock yarn blanket I was working on last summer and I realized I had never shown it to you completed. Here it is, all done!  It's lightweight and perfect for those cool mountain summer evenings.  I take it out when we're sitting around the campfire and wrap up in it.
We put the top on the gazebo over the weekend.  Since Alex & Fifi were at Jamie's we spent the night at the camper and finished setting everything up for summer.  Doesn't it look cozy?   Dennis is reading there on the right and Chloe is on the left watching me.  We bought a new table last week and the guys put it together Saturday morning...
Just in time for our first potluck lunch.  We usually combine our food with Larry, Nita, Paul and Lori and we never know exactly what we're going to eat but it always turns out great.  :-)
The train goes by twice a day, around 8:00 a.m. And again around 9:00 p.m.  I love to watch it go by and the conductor always blows the whistle and waves to us.
In honor of Mother's Day, this is my precious Mom.  She's been gone over 25 years now and I miss her Every. Single. Day.  I was only 29 when she died very unexpectedly and I was not ready to lose her.  My kids were small and I needed her advice.  She was always laughing and never, ever knew a stranger.  She talked to everyone she met.  Her funeral was the biggest one I ever attended.  The inside was standing room only and people were standing in the parking lot.  My Mother was never wealthy materially in any way, but she was wealthy in love and faith.  Which to me are much more important.  She was beautiful inside and out.
One last photo of Fifi which makes me laugh.  We were antique shopping last week and this mural was painted on the side of the building.  Love it.  What an attitude!
And I'll leave you with this photo card I got from my precious Piper for Mothers Day.  Isn't she the cutest thing ever?
Last post I was asked how Alex ended up in Japan.  Since this is so long already, I'll try to remember to answer next time if that's okay.

"Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.  And be thankful." Colossians 3:15

I'm trying to remember to be thankful for the past three weeks and not dwell on the leaving.  Lord, let me remember to be thankful always.



  1. Hi Betsy, it sounds like you had such a nice Mother's Day. I'm glad you've had a good time with Fifi and Alex. It sounds like Fifi is a very interesting young woman and that you get along really well. Hopefully they will be able to visit again soon. Your sock yarn blanket is beautiful! I love all the different colors. It looks warm too. I hope you're having a good week so far!

  2. You touch my heart, Betsy. This post is a special one to me, and I am typing to you looking through a film of tears for some reason I'm not sure I understand why...but I love how you share who you are and that who you are makes you dear to me...if that makes any sense. Another blogger contacted me and asked me to pray for them because as they got older they felt more anxious. I thought of Philippians 4:6-7, but when I started typing it out to her and double checked what I had typed, I realized I had left out "with thanksgiving"! I need to focus on being thankful always, too! Your sock blanket is beautiful! I wish I could be there with you and Fifi making paper and learning to use the loom. I am so happy you are enjoying your family and friends and the beauty around you. You encourage me to do the same...and to learn to FaceTime :) xxxxxxxxxxxx

  3. What a nice post, Betsy. I'm happy that you got to have 3 weeks with your dear son and his lovely girl, Fifi. That was the name of my mom's poodle! :-) That's so neat that Alex and Fifi drove to see his brother and the kids. Good for her to see other places. I so wish they'd make their life here, closer to you, but your son obviously loves Japan. Hang in there.. when they leave just savor the time they were here. How neat that she is so crafty and showed you two new skills! Call me if you need to talk. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  4. I enjoyed this post and that colorful blanket you created. The gazebo/canvas above your table looks like a great spot to gather.

  5. What a good time you've had with Alex and Fifi and she knits!! Thanks for sharing your memories with us.

  6. Sounds like a wonderful visit and amazing that you share a love of crafting together. Take care.

  7. Fifi is so talented! I'm sure you could find instructions on You Tube for weaving on your loom although it looks like you've got the hang of it! I'm so glad you had such a great time with your son and Fifi. Also, what a gazebo! That's a huge area...just like a house outdoors!
    That's great since that's why you go there....to enjoy the outdoors. What a cute card from Piper and your daughter...love the chalk board greeting! I never knew you had made a sock blanket before. It's big and gorgeous. I want to try one. On the podcasts they're all making what they call "A Happy Memories Blanket" although Stitched in Sweden is crocheting hexagons with a white "join as you go" which I might try. Enjoy all the great memories you just made!

  8. What a beautiful post Betsy. Fifi (I still love her name) seems to be such a fun person (that picture by the mural is too funny)...and she makes all her own clothes? And paper? And works a loom? And knits? Wow! Your gazebo at the trailer looks wonderful -- a perfect place to read, knit, nap. I also really enjoyed the paragraph about your mother and her picture. My Mom's been gone for 12 years now and like you, I miss her every day. Enjoy and savor your final day with Alex and Fifi.

  9. Hello my dear girl! I know your heart will be aching, when the kids have to return to Japan. I am so sorry. But so happy you had this wonderful time with them too. What a lovely couple they make! I loved each and every photo! So sweet that showed interest in what you love to do, and that she does it as well.
    I love the lake pictures! You know me, mountain lake lady, all the way! What a wonderful spot on the lake you have!! I can hardly wait to get up to our Big Bear!
    I want to thank you for your very kind words. It means so much to me.
    I'm okay. Just out of sorts. If we were near one another, we could have a good sit down, and talk all about it, and I know my friends in the Pacific North West, would have sage advice.
    xo Kris

  10. I love this post! It is everything I love most about blogging - a little sneak peak into someone else's life. Beautiful photos and projects and family. Thank you x

  11. Betsy I just know you big heart is breaking a bit with the two of them leaving today. I am so glad you got to know Fifi better and that you like her so much. Alex is a very lucky young man to have you as his Mother, you are the best. pi[er looks so much bigger in that photo, wow she is really changing.
    I am sending you a big hug Betsy as I know you heart is sad today.

  12. Sending hugs dear sis, you will be feeling your empty nest no doubt though having the lake to go to will help a great deal in making up for it .. praying for your boy and your health, and your little Piper is just so gorgeous.
    Thanks so much for the blessing of your post.
    Shaz in Oz.x

    {Shaz in Oz – Calligraphy Cards}

  13. Oh, dear friend! It made me cry with you to read this. I can't even imagine how much it hurts to know that they are leaving and that they live so far away and not to know when you will see them again. Oh, life is SO fragile and fast-moving, isn't it? It just makes me wish that we could all live around the ones we love the most and never have to be apart. Every moment is so precious! I trust God to hold you close and comfort you as they leave, and may He please work things out that you can see them again soon and all of you can be together and healthy and happy. I LOVE the afghan on the back of your couch. It is just beautiful...but, then again, all of your work is beautiful. Sending you love and hugs.

  14. I understand Betsy. It it soooooo difficult to have family fun and then leave. I cry and feel sad for a bit even when I say I will not. I try to think about the blessings we have because we all love one another so
    but it is tough

  15. Hello again Betsy, it would seem I missed this post. Such beautiful things to see as well. Belated Mother's Day greetings as well. Your mum looked very beautiful. Love the loom and the makes using it. Piper is so cute - a lovely card! Hugs Anne x