Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Fall!

Fall has arrived and I couldn’t be happier. We had our windows open again last night and it was wonderful. It seems like it has been months since we’ve been able to open our windows and leave them open. The sky is bright blue today and from where I’m sitting I can see the flag flying outside our front door. It’s a beautiful day.

Last Saturday we decided to take a drive with Mandy and Piper and the two puppies. Have any of you watched “Heartland Docs” on the Disney Channel? We absolutely love that show. There are three seasons and we’ve watched them all several times. The fourth season is being filmed now. Anyway, the show is about a husband and wife veterinarian team, Ben and Erin. They live in Hartington Nebraska with their teenage sons Charlie and Chase. The show is about the animals that they help in their veterinary practice. Saturday was a beautiful day so we loaded up the truck and drove two hours to Hartington. We stopped at the vet clinic for a photo and then visited the store and hotel that the family have remodeled and re-opened. The store is called Chase n Charlie’s. It has lots of unusual things along with the typical touristy items.

There is a beautiful city park where we went to let the dogs run and get some of their energy out before we started the drive back home. The park was huge and very well-kept. If it weren’t so far away from family, I think Hartington would be a lovely place to live.

Piper and I rode together in the backseat with the puppies. Lizzie is sound asleep in Piper‘s arms and you can just see Zoey‘s paw hanging down on my lap.

Here we are in front of the Cedar County veterinary office.

Nebraska farmland is just beautiful. The rolling hills are changing color into its fall covering.

The girls just love to play with each other. Here they are in Lizzie‘s bed at Mandy‘s house. When I tried to take the picture, of course they both woke up. They love to sleep together all cuddled up.

I made Zoey a purple sweater because she is so tiny the vet actually told me I would want to put something on her with the chilly evenings and the cold winter that will be in coming before we know it.

This is a better picture of the sweater.

This one is for Lizzie. It’s inside out as I’m sewing the neck seam together.

We were on our way home from Lowe’s the other night, when I saw this big beautiful moon up ahead. I’m sorry it’s a bit blurry but we were driving 45 mph down the street and there were some bumps in the road. Every time I see a big beautiful moon, I think of dear Teresa. I sure miss her and her blog and especially her friendship. 

Dennis and I both got our flu shots yesterday. For the first time in years I didn’t run a fever or even have a sore arm afterwards. It’s been 24 hours now so I think I’m out of danger.😍 We both need to get our shingles vaccinations too. Since I’ve had shingles before and only the old shingles shot, I guess the Singrix is the injection that we both need to get now.  It’s always something.

Thank you all for your patience in my reading your blogs and even posting. I had no idea moving back home and getting a puppy would absorb so much of my time. It seems like I can never sit down and knit or crochet because the puppy is grabbing the yarn and running away with it or I’m taking her outside every hour!  I know that she will soon calm down and become an older dog and that’s what keeps me going on these busy, busy days. 

Blessings and love,
Betsy








Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Busy Week

Where has the time gone? Who would have ever believed that a puppy could make so much work and exhaust two grown people!? A puppy, a birthday party and a trip. It has been a busy week!

Dennis‘s mom turned 85 on Saturday. We were planning to have just a small get together of immediate family that we knew were all vaccinated. However, several more people came and it end up being about 25 people at various times! I believe everyone was vaccinated except Piper and her two younger cousins. They played outside or downstairs with the puppies most of the time. Most people stayed outside the entire time except when they were fixing their plates and then they came inside two or three people at a time. I think everyone was conscious and was trying to be careful. I think, I hope, I pray, that all is well. It’s been three days and I haven’t heard anything from anyone and we are all fine. We have been so careful for the last year and a half but who knows how many more birthdays will have with her and she was excited to have everyone there.

Dennis and I provided pork chops, sausages, deviled eggs, fruit salad, Wichita potatoes, homemade pickles, drinks, cake and cupcakes. Most other people brought something too, including potato salad, watermelon, macaroni and cheese, lots of chips, and a relish tray. After two years of not seeing anyone it was nice and as I said, all of the adults that were here were vaccinated which eases my mind somewhat.

We bought mom a Keurig coffee maker, a box of her favorite coffee and a carousel to keep the k-cups in. She really likes it and it was nice to get something that we knew she would actually use and enjoy.

In the photo below you see mom, who was completely surprised or she would have been dressed up. She thought she was just coming over to visit us for a while in our backyard. Next to her is her brother Al who came from Minneapolis for the weekend. Al is 89. Behind them you see Al’s son Ron who lives in Reno. He has been visiting his family in Minnesota for two weeks. It was wonderful to see Ron because it had been at least 35 years since either Dennis or I saw him. He looks exactly the same except a few gray hairs!😂 Lots of other family members were also there including Ron’s sister Janet from Minnesota. Five of Mom‘s grandchildren who live in Omaha were here, along with my sister, my niece Chaela and her husband Tim. Alex called as he was walking through Queens Park and sang happy birthday to her over FaceTime. She was thrilled. Honestly, I still don’t know how we pulled off the surprise. I wasn’t at her house much Thursday or Friday because I was cooking most of the time and getting everything ready for the party and since I’m usually there for a big chunk of every day, I was sure she knew something was up.
Mandy and Dennis were deep in conversation.

The puppies were having a wonderful time playing together in the family room. These two sure love each other. I think Lizzie looks like a miniature golden retriever.

The trip I mentioned was that Dennis left Sunday early afternoon for Spokane and is actually on his way back home right now. His flight lands in a couple of hours at about 2:00 here in Omaha. Sunday night he was able to stop and visit with Neal and Jenny. Last night he had dinner at Arby’s with Larry and Nita and then they all went over to Paul and Lori’s to see the puppy. Can you believe that that furball Nita is holding is the same little Lizzie that I showed you a few weeks ago? She has sure grown hasn’t she?

I finally finished the baby blanket. I don’t remember it ever taking me this long to make a baby blanket. I guess that’s what happens when there’s a puppy in the house. It’s like having a two-year-old. I used six skeins of Yarn Bee Fresco Fiber; three each of the colorways eggshell and linen. The fiber content in this yarn is 59% cotton 36% acrylic and 5% other fibers. It is super soft and a joy to work with.  

I haven’t washed it yet because I knew I would have help in trying to photograph it. Look who just had to be in the picture. She kept grabbing the corners and pulling them over on itself. Sorry the picture isn’t any better. The blanket is about 40 in. square and I love it.  You can’t tell very well in this photo, but I did a single round of single crochet around the edge in the darker linen color. Doesn’t Zoey look like she has a surprised ghost face on her back with those three brown spots?

After I finished the blanket last night, I also finished off this dish cloth that I had about 3/4 done.

Whew!  It has been a crazy, crazy week. Dennis is working on selling the company and that is the reason for all of these trips to Spokane recently. It sounds like there are some people very interested so it may be over and done with sooner rather than later. I must admit it was nice having this little furball here with me while he was gone these two nights. It’s amazing the difference it makes not being alone in a house. Even when your companion is a measly 2.8 pound ball of fur! Dennis called a little while ago from the airport in Seattle. I had him on speaker phone and when Zoey heard his voice she went crazy and she started licking the phone . She actually hung up on him with her tongue! I called him back and he wondered what it happened. I think he was very pleased when he realized how much she seems to miss him.

I think I’m home for a while anyway. I was hoping maybe to take a trip by myself and meet some blog friends this fall but with so much Covid out there I’m really not comfortable doing that. I have been stressing over the birthday party for the last couple of weeks. At least it’s over and I can’t second-guess myself anymore.

I apologize once again for getting a little bit behind in reading your blogs over the last several days. I think I’m all caught up now and will try to do better now that all of the big events are done with for a while. Take care my dear friends and stay safe.

Blessings and hugs,
Betsy 



Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Puppy Fever

Oh my goodness! This little puppy of ours consumes every moment of every day. It is like having a newborn or a toddler! We were thrilled when she only woke up twice during the night last night to go outside and then went back to sleep in her crate with no fuss. The crate has been dry every night since we got her. She is definitely one smart little cookie, but that just means we have to be smarter than she is and I’m not sure I have that intellectual capability!

She thinks she’s a big dog, all 2.6 pounds of her. This morning she climbed the concrete stairs in the backyard all by herself. Each stair is almost twice as tall as she is. I don’t know how she did it. But she is a determined little girl.

And there is more news! There are now two puppies! On Friday Miss Piper and I went and picked up Zoey‘s sister Lizzie and now Piper has her own puppy. Oh the happiness of these two puppies when they saw each other and how we love them both so much already! Lizzie spent the day with Dennis and I, both Saturday and Sunday as Mandy had already made plans before getting the puppy. They were going to the lake with Brad’s family. They are camping and she didn’t want to take a new puppy who hasn’t had all of her shots around other dogs and there are also a lot of ticks there.

We didn’t mind a bit. The girls entertained each other, both went outside very well with no accidents in the house. I think it’s going to be great for them to grow up together. Since they are part poodle, they are hypoallergenic and Piper can be around them both.

In the above photo Lizzie is on the left and Zoey is on the right with the spots. Lizzie looks like a miniature golden lab. Her real name is Elizabeth, which is what Piper calls her but that’s such a big mouthful for such a tiny puppy. They are both such sweet puppies.

Plus Brad and Mandy have a friend who used to be a dog trainer before she retired. She is willing to meet with Piper and I and give us some tips for training them. I already have Zoey sitting pretty well when told and she knows her name, just doesn’t always respond to it.😍

All of this doesn’t leave much time for anything else. I have been trying to decorate for fall for almost a week now and the bin is still in the garage! How can one little puppy take up so much time? The only stitching I have gotten done is on the crocheted baby blanket and it’s coming right along and almost completed.

It’s a simple two row repeat and doesn’t take much thought. I can pick it up and put it down without worrying about losing my place in the pattern.

Take care of yourselves. Wear your masks! Keep your distance! This nasty virus isn’t finished with us yet.

Blessings and hugs, 
Betsy

Friday, September 3, 2021

Meet Zoey!

Dennis and I are both in love. Meet Zoey, our new little 10 week old Miniature Poodle/Chihuahua mix puppy. We got her on our anniversary Wednesday instead of going out to dinner! I think it was a great trade. 😍 We said no more dogs after Chloe but we should have known that our house wouldn’t be able to stay empty very long.

I love her little floppy ears and I hope they stay that way. The brown circle around her eye is pretty cute too.

Her favorite place is all snuggled up in her blanket on my lap.

She has snuggled her 2.5 pound self right into our hearts. She sleeps in a little kennel by our bed at night and it has been dry both nights. She hasn’t even had any accidents in the house. I take her outside constantly so I’m probably the one that’s trained!

Daddy is a 5 pound poodle and mommy is an 8 pound Chihuahua. We’re hoping that she doesn’t get very big so she will be easy to take places and won’t take up much room in a trailer when we are able to start camping again.

We needed to get a dog that was hypoallergenic with some poodle in it so Piper could be around it. She is off the charts allergic to cats and is allergic to dogs but not quite as bad. 

Zoey seems to be a pretty smart little puppy so we’re hoping all will continue to go well. It’s been almost 30 years since I have house broke or trained a puppy, so if anyone has any good hints just let me know.

Yarn fun is definitely taking a backseat for a while while we work on potty training. I know you will all understand. Puppy kisses are the best!

Blessings and love,
Betsy

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Happy Anniversary to us!

Then…

And now….(At Canterbury Castle last month)

At Keats Riverwalk.

Would we do it again?  In a heartbeat! This man is my rock in this crazy world. He loves me unconditionally and I love him right back. 

So far it’s been a wonderful 43 years and counting.

“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is LOVE. I Corinthians 13:13

Blessings and hugs.
Betsy

Monday, August 30, 2021

Home….. again, for a while!

Can you say crazy? Our life has been a mad dash to and fro since about April. I think I am now home for a while, although Dennis may still be doing some traveling. First of all, I want to take you to our last full day in London. Alex took us on a walk to the top of Primrose Hill where you get a gorgeous view of London skyline. From what I was reading afterwards, Primrose Hill was the site of many duels in years gone by. It was quite the hike. I think it was 2 to 3 miles each direction from their house. Although I was exhausted at the end of the day and it was very warm, I wouldn’t have missed it for anything. What a beautiful site! You can see The Shard and the the London Eye, along with many other landmarks.  As you can see, it is a very popular place.

At the bottom of Primrose Hill was a pub called “The Queens!” Now you can’t get much more appropriate than that can you?

Don’t you just love the sign? Dennis and I each had a milkshake and Alex had some sort of a fruit drink. The pubs in England are one of my favorite things. They’re like being in someone’s living room and just chatting and relaxing. You are never rushed or hurried in any way.

On the way home from Primrose Hill, we walked down Abbey Street. This particular corner wasn’t the famous corner from the Beatles, but we did drive by Abbey Rd., Studios several times. It’s not far from the kids house.  You can see Alex pointing at the sign. Now wouldn’t you think with all of the exercise we got as we wandered around England, that we would have lost some weight? I think Dennis did, but I sure didn’t. We also ate very well!  Now I really have to get serious about getting rid of some of this excess poundage. I have no idea what that expression on my face is. Is anyone else like me and hates getting their photo taken?

My favorite souvenirs are magnets. Our refrigerator was completely overrun with them. Dennis made Mandy and I each one of these magnet boards last week. They are 40 in. square and hold a LOT of magnets! We try to pick them up whenever we visit a new place and friends send them to us as well. I have this hanging on the wall in my craft area. I love it! We have been trying to think of how we wanted to display them for a long time and I think this is perfect. Look! I have room to do more traveling!
Last week while we were home I managed to finish all 25 of the socks for Piper’s advent calendar. I used the same needles for each of them, also using sock yarn exclusively. You can see the difference in sizes of the socks. No wonder every pair of hand knit socks is a little bit different.

I also knitted three baby hats, crocheted one and made two pair of mittens.

And then, off we flew last Wednesday to Spokane. We flew home yesterday in the late afternoon. We stayed with our friends Paul and Lori again. They are so gracious and hospitable. When Lori met us at the door, look who she had in her arms! They lost their sweet girl Mattie just a few weeks after we lost Chloe. They couldn’t stand the quiet house and went out and found this sweet little miniature schnauzer. She is named Izzy and is 3.6 pounds. She took to me like a duck to water and I fell absolutely head over heels in love with her. Now I have puppy fever my friends. I have been combing the Internet for puppies. Unfortunately, I am finding a lot of scams. We want a small dog this time so it can sit in my lap while I knit. Also, if we are able to start traveling again in the trailer a smaller dog will be much easier. Do any of you know anybody who has yorkies or miniature schnauzers or anything around that size available? I’ve been checking rescue groups to with no luck.

Just look at that face! How could you not fall in love? She’s about 8 inches long and about 6 inches high right now.

Then, Nita gave me this pile of hats that needed to be sewn up. I brought them home with me and last night I sewed all the seams and have them ready to be delivered to the hospital soon.
I was able to spend quite a lot of time with our friends Neal and Jenny too. Neal has a new car that he just bought a few months ago and he insisted I drive it around Thursday and Friday. We had a rental car, but Dennis needed it for work. How many friends would do something like that?  These two are our best friends in the world.  Because Neal was gracious enough to loan me his car I was able to visit a lot of people on this trip.
I started this baby blanket the night before we left for Spokane. Obviously nothing has been done on it in almost a week.

And the next two photos were taken from the window of the airplane yesterday. These were the Cascade Mountains just after we took off from Seattle. Sorry about the scratched up window. I still thought the photos were pretty neat.

Just look at those mountain peaks and even with the ridiculous heat in Washington this summer, that’s still some snow on the very top’s.

We had blue sky all the way to Omaha. I was able to see the Cascade Mountains and several towns along interstate 90 in Washington that I recognized from the air. Then we crossed the Bitterroot Mountains of Idaho and I saw the Clark Fork River winding through them. The majestic Rockies rose up to greet us too. After that we crossed a lot of deserted land in Montana and Wyoming before reaching the Black Hills of South Dakota. I even saw Mount Rushmore! Spearfish and Rapid City were spotted along with Ellsworth Air Force Base and Wall Drug. The Badlands were beautiful to behold. Then we headed south and flew across Central Nebraska. I could see the Platte River winding along the interstate and also the museum in Kearney that stretches over the interstate, that Dennis and I visited last year. Then the Capitol dome in Lincoln was shining brightly in the sun! Before I knew it we were in Omaha with familiar sides of the city greeting me. It was one of the most beautiful plane rides I have ever had. My knitting sat forgotten in my lap as I stared out of the window for virtually the entire trip. Never have we had such good weather when I’ve had a window seat. We crossed literally half of the country and I could see it all! We certainly live in a beautiful land.

I hope you’re having a wonderful Monday. I’ll be catching up with you all very soon.
Blessings and love,
Betsy


Monday, August 23, 2021

More fun!

Continuing on with our trip in and around London, we had a wonderful time visiting with good friends Lorraine and Gerard. Lorraine has the blog “Mamas Mercantile” that is over on my sidebar. They live on the Isle of Lewis and were gracious enough to come all the way to London to spend the day with Dennis and I! My goodness, it was as if we had known each other all of our lives. We spent hours and hours together and the time just flew by. We had tea in a little shop in Saint Pancras station, then walked over to Kings Cross station to the Harry Potter store to buy some souvenirs for family. After that we had lunch at a wonderful Italian restaurant and just sat and visited for hours until it was time for them to catch the train. They told us of a cottage for sale next-door to them on the island that I think I would love to live in. Lorraine tried to bribe Dennis to move there, with some of her home baked treats. I think it almost worked! It was amazing how much we all had in common with each other. I honestly love all of my blog sisters. What a great time we have when we are finally able to meet.
Here is a photo of Lorraine and I together. I’m sitting down and she’s standing up. She is so tiny and I’m such a giraffe of a person!

We spent a lot of time laughing and sharing our lives.

Here we are just before we had to say goodbye, trying to do a selfie. As you can tell I’m not the best at them. I’m sure you will see more photos on Lorraine‘s blog when they return home. I think our guys became pretty good friends to in those few hours too.

Look at the amazing gifts that Lorraine brought for us. She made me a bag with scenes from London on it, along with a lot of goodies from Scotland. She also gave us a jar of jam that was confiscated by security. I sure hope someone enjoyed it.🤷‍♀️

This is Saint Pancras station where their train into London arrived and departed. We had lunch at a restaurant here in the station.

And, this is the reason we went to London to begin with. Our son Alex and new daughter Tara were finally able to get married! Look at this handsome guy! Aren’t I lucky?

And the equally handsome groom!

In the black cab on the way to the wedding.
And here we are! There were only 9 of us at the wedding itself. But we were able to Zoom with Jamie, Mandy and Piper so the entire immediate families could be there.

Our son Jamie, Mandy and Piper.

They got dressed up to attend the festivities. It was pretty early in the morning for them back here in the US. One of Piper‘s babies even attended!💜

I love this photo of my two guys in the back garden.

The kids had to postpone their wedding plans last year because of Covid and this year they could only get married in the registrars office with 10 or less people attending. The registrar made the wedding very personal and they wrote their own vows to each other. Tara‘s mother and I each did a reading during the wedding. It was wonderful! We were so thankful that we were able to be there, even though there  were a lot of hoops to jump through with testing and travel, etc.  We’re still hoping that they will be able to have a big wedding next year, with all of their friends and entire families in attendance. Covid has sure caused a lot of problems hasn’t it? We had a lovely time though, and filled the entire weekend with wedding festivities. 

We couldn’t ask for a sweeter daughter-in-law and family. We truly believe and feel that we have become one family with hers. We adore her parents, her sister and brother-in-law and her little nephew. They made us feel so welcome and like we were part of the family already. It makes life so much easier when the families get along, doesn’t it? We are looking forward to going back in the spring next year if travel allows. 

Well I guess that’s enough for one post isn’t it? I’m sorry there are no photos of Tara. Her position at work doesn’t allow for me to post photos on social media. I hope you all understand. Rest assured, she is absolutely gorgeous, inside and out. We love her dearly already.

I hope you all have a wonderful week. Dennis and I are zooming off again on Wednesday. This time we’re flying to Spokane for several days. He has to be there for work and I am missing our friends something terrible, so I’m tagging along. We are so lucky to have a great housesitters here to allow us to do that. The young man, (13 year old), across the street is thrilled to be able to mow the grass again for us! He likes to make some money and he does a fantastic job too. He trimmed, edged and mowed both Moms and our yards twice while we were on our trip.

Blessings and hugs, 
Betsy