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Sunday, January 31, 2021

Finishes!

I have some finishes for you today. I can’t believe it’s been almost a week since I wrote a post. I don’t know where the days go, but they seem to fly by.  We had another FaceTime video today with Mandy while she walked through the house again with the son and daughter-in-law of the owner. This time our realtor who is drawing up the paperwork was with them. She had to see the house herself before some of the paperwork could be completed. I can’t believe the progress they have made in cleaning out the owners personal items. It looks so much bigger than it did before. They are leaving much of the furniture and that will be wonderful. We may replace some of it eventually, but at least we know we have enough to get started when we get there. Dennis is especially excited about the desk and a bookshelf they are leaving in the office. Larry and Nita are giving us a futon that they have. Everyone says it is a very comfortable full-size bed when converted from a sofa to a bed. We will put that in the office too and it will provide an extra guest bed.  They are leaving an entire master bedroom set, complete with nightstand, chest of drawers, dresser with mirror and a queen size bed. We have our own mattress that we will use, but since we gave away all of our bedroom furniture, this is like a gift from the Lord. 

Really the only furniture we kept was our guestroom set, the end tables in the living room, the storage unit that was under the TV and two lazyboy recliners. That’s it!  The bedroom set will be perfect in the other guestroom. That room will be Miss Piper‘s room when she comes to stay with us and I think it will be nice for a little girl.  They are also leaving the dining room hutch and table, kitchen table and chairs and a sofa, loveseat and end tables in the living room! I was a bit worried when we gave all of our furniture away, knowing how much it would cost to buy all new furniture if we did decide to buy a house. But just look how God blessed us. He not only provided a house in the perfect location for us next door to Mom, but he also provided furniture too! He is so good.

I am excited to have a dedicated crafting area at one end of the family room where I can leave my sewing machine out and have my yarn stored where it will be easy to get to. Now that I know this is happening, I’m very eager to move and get started on our new life. I did book the POD for our move in September. I have also reserved a U-Haul trailer for May.  Dennis and I will fill the U-Haul and take it back then. It will be our first time in the house to see what all needs to be done.

I’m sorry about the lighting in the following pictures. It was very hard to get good photos this week as it’s been snowing lightly or raining nearly every day. Tomorrow is supposed to be 47°F. Isn’t that crazy?  I will take it since tomorrow is my birthday and you all know how much I detest winter. I feel like God is giving me a gift of springtime weather. A little bit of warmth and spring rain showers.

This is the baby blanket that I was crocheting on last week. I used the same cross-stitch pattern that Teresa is using on her blanket from Lucy at Attic 24. You can find photos of Teresa‘s blanket on her blog which is on my sidebar under “Teresa Kasner.”


I just made up a very simple border of chains and a shell stitch using triple crochet. The second photo is much closer to the actual color of the blanket. This will be donated to the hospital nursery here in Spokane.
Next I have been following a lady on YouTube named the “Crocheting House Mouse.” She is crocheting a mystery shawl where every night her husband chooses a color out of her scraps and puts it in a bag for her so she will be surprised. That is the next row she puts on her shawl. She only crochets one row a day.  Well, I used the same pattern, but I used one entire skein of Knit Picks speckle yarn in fingering weight and several of my scrap sock yarn balls. I was trying to make it in more muted colors and not overly bright. I just ordered enough material from “Goods” store in Pennsylvania to make five summer dresses. I chose colors to go with the speckle yarn out of my scrap bag that would match some of the colors in those dresses.   I think this light shawl will be perfect for the summer evenings.  I’m sorry it isn’t stretched or blocked yet. I really have no place here to block something this large.

Two more pair of mittens were made using two strands held together of the Lion Brand Cupcake yarn. These mittens are so soft. One ball of the cupcake yarn was enough to make four pair of mittens with just a little less than one yard left over! It was wonderful. I felt like I had used almost every bit of that yarn. Thank you to the person who gave me this yarn. You know who you are. Four little children will have warm hands next winter because of your generosity in donating this yarn.

As I said earlier, every day for the past week we have had rain or snow. One day it would snow 3 to 4 inches and the next it would rain and wash a lot of it away. Then it would snow again overnight and then turn to rain again. Right now we have a little piles of snow but most of it is gone. I’m sure that if it gets as warm as they say it will tomorrow, the last reminders of the white stuff will disappear. Yay! I know some of you are just getting your first real snow this weekend. Debbie, I’m talking to you! I hope you’re enjoying it as much as you thought you would.😍

Brad and Mandy gave us a gift card to the Olive Garden for Christmas. I’m going to call in an order tomorrow and Dennis will stop and pick it up on his way home from work. That will be my birthday dinner! I also have a grocery pick up tomorrow morning and I ordered a little 5 inch cake πŸŽ‚ that will be the perfect size for Dennis and I to each have a piece tomorrow night after dinner. That way there won’t be a big cake sitting around waiting for me to eat the whole thing! And really, we all know that’s what would happen.πŸ˜‚ Alex already FaceTimed this evening from Japan to wish me a happy birthday because it’s Monday there already!

I hope you all have a wonderful Monday and are safe and well. No luck so far on getting vaccine appointment for Dennis but I keep trying. How are you all doing in the process?  I am so sorry this is so long. Thank you for hanging around if you made it this far. I guess I had more to talk to you about then I realized!

Blessings and love, 
Betsy

Monday, January 25, 2021

Snowy Day☃️❄️☃️

We had snow off and on most of the day today. Luckily it didn’t accumulate very much, only an inch or two. Not so back in Nebraska. Piper was out of school today and she’s out again tomorrow because of a blizzard that they have had and are still getting snow from.  I think their final predicted total is somewhere between 14 and 16 inches!  Mandy got to run the big snowblower by herself today.  I think it will really help take a load off of her shoulders.

I made two more pair of mittens with the last donated skein of yarn from my anonymous benefactor. I couldn’t find any patterns I liked that used just one skein  of the cupcake yarn, so I unraveled it from the skein and made individual balls of each color. Then I knit the mittens holding two strands together since it was a thinner yarn than I usually use. I think they turned out great.  I also think there is enough yarn to make two more pair.

I have been admiring the blanket that my friend Teresa has been crocheting. You can see it by clicking on “Teresa Kasner” over on my sidebar. On Saturday, after studying the stitches,  I decided to try to make a baby blanket using the same stitch. This is what I came up with.

It is a very pretty and simple cross stitch. I don’t know if I made it exactly like hers, but I like the way this one looks too.  I am ready to put the border on now.

I went to pick up our mail this morning at Larry and Nita’s and I had a package that I was not expecting. It was from Lorraine, who lives on a little island off the coast of Scotland. You can find Lorraine‘s blog on my sidebar if you click on “Mama’s Mercantile”. It appears she has been a busy little elf, sending packages far and wide all over the globe!

I received a beautiful bag that I am assuming she sent for a project or knitting bag, but I am tempted to use it as my handbag because it’s so beautiful. She also enclosed a needle holder. Both of them have the sweetest little lambs on them.
Lorraine does the most beautiful sewing work. Her stitches are perfect. Look at this cheerful lining and the sweet little rabbit fabric for the pocket inside. I am in love with this bag.

Inside the needle holder she even included three pair of knitting needles! Look at the fabric she used for the pockets. Isn’t this perfect?

What can I say? I feel very loved and spoiled by all of my friends here. Lorraine, I don’t know how to thank you. I feel like I’m having early birthday gifts. The snowman from Cindy last week and this beautiful bag and knitting needle holder from Lorraine. Thank you both so very much.

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend and you are all doing well. I have heard of three more friends who have the dreaded virus.  We still can’t find any place for Dennis to get the vaccine, but believe me, I am checking every day to see if there’s somewhere I can get him an appointment.

We had a very quiet weekend here. We spent most of it just reading and watching videos.  We attended a couple of online church services. It was very cold and snowy so we didn’t go out much except to walk Chloe.  This morning I talked to my sister for quite a long time. It was so nice. She took a personal day from work because of the bad snowstorm. I don’t have anything to complain about when I see the snow that they’ve had this year. We’ve had a very nice winter so far.

Take care and I’ll be back soon.

Blessings,
Betsy


Thursday, January 21, 2021

Happy Thursday

Good morning my friends! It’s another cold and cloudy day here in Spokane. There were blue skies and sunshine when I woke up, but it has gone away. I don’t have a lot of plans for today other than to start a new knitting project. I ended up having another octicular migraine yesterday late in the morning, so I was out of commission most of the afternoon. Today is a much better day with just a bit of a lingering headache, nothing to complain about though. I thought I would share the  “Sheep Virtues” with you again after I outlined all of the sheep with one strand of dark brown. I think it made a big difference, don’t you?

I also made four more pair of mittens, so I’m all caught up for January. I’m trying to get creative and use up all of my little balls of leftover yarn.
This is the new project I will be starting, although I want to make them into full mittens instead of fingerless. When it’s as cold as it is right now you need your fingertips covered too!  I am going to be using some leftover Knit Picks sock yarn in Stroll Heather. I’m using the Farmhouse and Persimmon colorways.
I think I should have enough yarn.

I can’t share too many photos of the house because absolutely no paperwork has been signed yet, but here is one photo of the outside. It has a double car garage to the left and two windows above the garage. The two windows are the two guest rooms and the master bedroom and bath are in the back of the house. The three windows on the right top are the living room and bottom is the family room. Sorry it’s blurry, but this photo has been emailed three times and saved.  The house has permanent siding and vinyl wrapped windows, as well as “gutter helmets.” It is virtually no maintenance on the outside besides lawn care and snow removal. I really didn’t want another split level house, but there aren’t a lot of choices right now. I would have preferred an older, one level craftsman house, but we don’t always get what we want do we?  I am very happy that the Lord has provided this home for us in such an excellent location.  As for our moving date, that is still up in the air. As I said in my last post, we’re hoping to go back in the spring and start cleaning the house out and see what needs to be done. The actual move probably won’t be until fall.  Although we will be right next-door to Dennis’s mom, Mandy, Brad and Piper will be about 20 minutes away and my sister about 20 minutes the other direction. There is family scattered all in between and my brother is across the Missouri River in Council Bluffs.

Look, look, look! I had a surprise in the mail yesterday. Cindy from the “Delighted Hands” blog over on my side bar sent me one of her sweet little snowman. She is becoming a whiz using the lathe that she recently started working on. She makes the most exquisite bowls from logs found on their property! And these sweet little snowman too! I have fallen in love with every one that I saw on her blog. She knows that I collect snowmen and they are my favorite winter decoration. She even signed the bottom of it. When she is a famous artist, I will have one of her first art pieces. πŸ’œ☃️πŸ’œ He has a place of honor here in the RV and he will have one in the new house too. I think he will be a snowman that stays out year-round. Thank you so much Cindy! He is so handsome with his wonderful smile and fancy scarf.

I hope you are all having a wonderful week and are safe and well.

This verse is one of my absolute favorites. When I would sit at the lake and see the eagles flying over, I couldn’t help but quote this verse in my mind each time.

Blessings and love,
Betsy

Monday, January 18, 2021

A Finish

Happy Monday my friends! We had sunshine today for the first time in over a week. It was so good to see the blue sky once again. I took Chloe for a walk down past the airport today right at sunset. Oh how I wish I had taken my phone with me because I saw the most beautiful sunset reflecting off of the snow on Mt. Spokane.

I finished the Rainbow Ripple Baby Blanket. I used a full two skeins of Lion Brand Cupcake yarn in the forest path colorway and a size H crochet hook. This yarn was a gift to me by an anonymous donor. I can’t remember now for sure, but I think I had 18 inches of yarn left when I finished the last round. I was definitely playing yarn chicken! I have one more skein of the same yarn in a different color that I will start a blanket with probably tomorrow or Wednesday.  I will knit the next blanket, because knitting uses significantly less yarn than crochet.
You can also see one lonely pair of mittens there. I took this photo last night and I only had one pair done.

Today, I knitted three more pair of mittens.

Chloe loves it when we have the fireplace on.  She always acts depressed on Mondays when Dennis goes back to work. He takes her on at least two long, long walks in addition to her trips to the dog park every day. I usually only take her on one long walk, besides her dog park visits.  After all, I have my housework and crafting to do!  

I got a really good deal on a couple of steaks in my grocery order, so yesterday afternoon we decided to grill them. It was about 28°F when Dennis started the grill. He bundled up and stood out there and cooked those steaks!   Brrrr.  My goodness they were good. I also made breakfast potatoes and a Caesar salad to go along with it.  He had his orange stocking cap on, plus the hat that our “adopted” daughter Harumi sent him for Christmas.

Not a lot of other news. We watched two different church services online yesterday and just read and watched a couple of shows. A nice relaxing weekend.

Oh, I was asked what I was going to do with the “Sheep Virtues.”  I finished outlining all of the sheep, but I forgot to take a picture and it’s in the drawer in the bedroom where Dennis is asleep now. I will put a photo of it in my next blog. I probably won’t do anything with it for finishing until we get settled in the house and then I will frame it and hang it somewhere. I was going to frame it and hang it here in the RV but I really don’t want to have to go into any stores right now.  

Speaking of the house, the sons of the owner of the house in Omaha has agreed to sell it to us. Yippee! We talked to a realtor Saturday morning and she’s going to start drawing up the paperwork. We haven’t heard anything since then, so I hope it’s all going well. We’re both getting excited now and would like to start making plans. Right now we’re hoping to make a trip back there as soon as the passes are clear, probably in May.  Since there is no loan, the realtor thought that we could probably have possession within 2 to 3 weeks. However, we told her we were in no hurry and we had told the family that they could have 2 to 3 months to get everything that they wanted out of the house, longer if they need it.  We have no reason to get it any earlier anyway.  When we go in the spring we’re hoping to be able to have possession and start cleaning the house out. I think we’re going to hire someone to paint the inside before we move in. Mandy says the person who painted their house was very, very reasonable and did a great job, so I think we’ll talk to him.  We have always done our own painting, so it seems strange to think about hiring someone. However, it will be much easier to have someone else do it since the inside of the house hasn’t been painted for at least 20 years and it all needs to be done. It’s a smaller home than our house here in Spokane, and that’s fine with me. It’s less to clean right?!

I hope you all have had a restful weekend. I am so glad to know that I don’t have to rely on my own strength to face the many changes in my life. The Lord is my rock and my strength.

Blessings and love, 
Betsy

Thursday, January 14, 2021

How did we get here?

Boy howdy, it’s been a wild few days here in Spokane. We had wind gusts at 73 mph yesterday. People all over the city are still without power and likely won’t get it back until sometime next week at the earliest. Trees are uprooted and toppled through a lot of roofs! Electric lines are down with power poles snapped in two like toothpicks. But us, here in the RV park? We’re snug as two bugs in a rug. Our power didn’t even flicker! Praise to the Lord!  Dennis had our generator at the ready but we didn’t even need it.

I have finished the main part of the cross stitching on the “Sheep Virtues” and have just begun to outline the sheep. I decided that since most of them are stitched in tones of cream and brown, I’m going to use one strand of dark brown to outline them. So far I’ve almost completed the sheep on the bottom right. What do you think?
Since I last posted I stitched Kindness...

and Joyfulness.

I also put a few more rows on the baby blanket. I’m sorry for the lighting. It’s still gets dark so early here and I took these photos when I had to have artificial lighting on.

So. I have had a few people ask me why we’re living in the RV. And I realized that I have a few fairly new readers. Some of you know the story, and if you just want to say goodbye and not read the whole thing again I understand.

I will try to make it a short story. I was raised in Iowa, my husband Dennis was raised in Nebraska. But, the little town I was raised in was right smack dab in the middle of Omaha, Nebraska! A long, long time ago the Missouri River flooded and left that little tiny bit of Iowa on the Nebraska side of the river!  Anyway, we were both born and raised within 7 miles of the other.  In fact, the same doctor delivered us both. We realized that when we went to get our marriage license and we looked at our birth certificates. Omaha is a pretty big city, so the odds of that happening are pretty small. We met each other in a Sunday School class when Dennis was home on leave from the Air Force. All three of our children were born in Omaha.  We were the last people you would ever expect to leave the city that we had always lived in, with our families all around us. 

However, Dennis was offered a great job here in gorgeous Spokane, Washington in 1993. At the time, gang activity was increasing greatly in Omaha and we didn’t want our children growing up around that. We packed up our three kids and moved west! We have never really regretted it. Except the part of being away from family.  We love the Pacific Northwest. It is absolutely beautiful country here. We sold our first house here in Spokane and built one in 2002.   This is a picture of the house we built, just before we sold it last summer.

We thought that would be our forever home, but one by one our children grew up and flew the coop. Our oldest is now in Omaha with her family. Our middle son is in Montana with his family. And our youngest flies between London and Japan on a regular basis. His fiancΓ© is in London. 

Dennis’s mom is almost 85 years old. Having lost his sister, who lived very close to her last summer, and with his brother living in Florida, we have come to realize that she needs us close by. I also lost my brother from Covid last May. Each day that passes we realize more and more how precious family is. Dennis will be retiring in the very near future and with the housing market doing so well last summer, we decided to sell our house. The first day it was on the market we had several offers, all over the asking price, so it sure didn’t take long. We gave most of our furniture to a refugee family next-door and over 25 truckloads to the Goodwill.  We do have a storage unit the size of a single car garage with mainly kitchenware, books, Dennis’s tools and yarn!  We do have a few pieces of furniture but not much. We moved into our 38 foot travel trailer and we’re living in an RV park until he retires.  Although our plan has always been to travel and not buy another house for at least a few years, we have come to realize that his mom needs us close by the majority of the time. We will still travel with our trailer, just not for extended periods like we had originally planned.

Well, that’s it in a nutshell. If I didn’t answer all your questions, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll do my best to answer them.

I hope you all have a wonderful and safe weekend. It sounds like progress is being made on vaccine distribution. Hopefully that means there is light at the end of the tunnel for us all.

Blessings and love, 
Betsy

Sunday, January 10, 2021

I’ve been away...

I’m sorry I’ve been away from here for awhile.  I have had emails from several people asking if I was OK. You are all so good to me! Thank you so much and I appreciate it. Everything is fine. After posting nearly every day for two months, I think I was just tired. I don’t know how those of you who post every day do it.  Also, the events of the last week has completely worn me out. I have to admit, I never thought I would see people in our country acting the way they have this week. It’s purely ridiculous.  I also have to say that I just didn’t have the heart to post. I know that none of you are like that, but it’s just so sad to hear people tarring every democrat or every republican with the same brush. The thing is, both sides are acting badly in different ways now and it’s so sad. We are all Americans. And that’s all I will say on the subject.

Now, for something more pleasant. Many of you gave me some very good advice about my wrist. I have been wearing my brace to bed every night and I also started taking vitamin B6. Dennis has taken it for almost 30 years for carpal tunnel. I know that if he goes two or three days without it he can barely use his hands. He’s on the computer for 12 hours a day, five days a week.   I still can’t believe that I didn’t think of it myself.  I believe Val is the one who mentioned it to me. That seems to have really helped a lot. I still haven’t done any knitting but, I have been doing cross-stitching and a little crochet.

I brought the “Sheep Virtues” out of hibernation. They were just waiting for me! I started and finished “Simplicity.”

And “Patience.”

And “Friendship.”

I only have two left to go. I’m thinking I may outline all of the sheep with a single strand of gray. They seem to be a bit hard to see. What do you all think?

I also started crocheting the “Rainbow Ripple Baby Blanket,” by Celeste Young. I’m using Lion Brand Cupcake yarn in the Forest Path colorway. This is the yarn that was sent to me last week. I just finished the first cake and I’m getting ready to start the second one. This will make a very nice sized baby blanket. I have one more cake in a different color that will make a very nice preemie blanket. Both will be donated to the hospital NICU.  I did fold the blanket over in order to take the picture because I didn’t have enough room to get the entire thing in without standing on a chair. πŸ’œ

We have some news! Yesterday we took a virtual tour by FaceTime of a house in Omaha. Mandy met the owner’s son and walked through with us. She also sent some photos. I don’t feel like I should post any right now since we don’t know if it will ultimately be our house. It is next-door to Dennis‘s mom. We will be there to do all of her yardwork and help her with anything she needs. It’s a three bedroom, two bathroom house and will fit our needs very well. We were hoping for a ranch style home, but there just aren’t very many of them available in the areas we want to live in.  There is a place we should be able to store our trailer not too far away. We are hoping to take some trips, especially in the winter, away from snow! We still don’t know a timeline of when we will be moving or even if we will get this house. We’re hoping it will all work out. No one has lived there for a couple of years but we know the owner very well. She now has dementia and is in a nursing home and her children need to sell the house. They have even offered us most of the furniture if we want it, which would be a big blessing, since we gave most of our furniture to the refugee family who lived next-door to us here in Spokane.  We are praying for God’s will. If we are supposed to get the house it will happen. If not, we’ll find something else. This would be so handy though, to be so close to Mom.

I took this picture over a week ago one morning when I woke up to see heavy frost everywhere. I’ve left the poinsettias outside for some color and they were very delicately frosted. I thought they were kind of pretty.

I have a few new readers who don’t know our story about living in the RV and I had said I would tell that story in my next post, but I had no idea that it would be such a long one. I promise I will tell it next time.  I’m surprised you’re all still here reading this anyway! (If you are.) I’m wishing you all a wonderful Monday, full of God‘s peace and love. Remember, ultimately I think we are all on the same side.

Blessings and love,
Betsy

Monday, January 4, 2021

A Finish!

I finished Dennis’s sweater and it is completely blocked and almost dry. Excuse my unorthodox way of drying the sweater. Space is limited here in the RV. I had it laying on the bed until last night, but obviously it had to be moved we could sleep. It was almost dry by then anyway, so I just moved it to the sofa with a towel under it. He wants to wear it tomorrow, so I’m hoping it will be completely dry by then. It has been raining for four days straight. Most of our snow is gone and it’s been between 35 and 40° during the day. Hooray! I don’t mind the Seattle winter at all. Better rain than snow in my opinion!  We ended up with 12 1/2 inches of snow from the storm last week. The dehumidifier has been doing an excellent job of keeping everything dry in here and the windows free of ice.

Anyway,on with the sweater details. This is the Adirondack Pullover by Elizabeth Morrison. It is a paid for pattern on ravelry. I used Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in the Cobblestone Heather colorway. I had about 4 yards left out of 13 skeins. This was the fourth sweater I have knit with this pattern using 100% wool and I really enjoy it. It’s Dennis’s favorite sweater pattern and the one he requests me to make for him time after time.

Miss Piper let me know that she had outgrown her mittens I made her last year. She got a new winter coat so I made her a new pair last night and mailed them off to her this morning. I hope these match well enough.

I came across this meme online and although it says crochet, obviously it can be used for knit blankets too. I’m sorry it’s a bit blurry but I thought it might be useful to some of you too.
I wanted to share this photo of our Montana grandson snowboarding last week. Our granddaughter took it for us while they were skiing and snowboarding. They live fairly close to the ski area. You don’t see me write much about them on here or post photos because they prefer not to be online, but I thought this one was anonymous enough that you wouldn’t be able to identify him. Uncle Alex is pretty proud of him. He apparently skateboards just like Alex does. He is in the middle of a jump here.

As I was making Piper’s second mitten last night, I started having consistent shooting pains down my left hand from the base of my thumb through my wrist. It had done that a few times last week also, but went away when I slept with my wrist brace on. Dennis has made me promise no knitting or crocheting for at least several days. Can you imagine that? He thinks I’m getting carpal tunnel from so much knitting. Oh my Gosh! What would I do if that is the case?  It’s not like I have nothing else to do. I can always find something to clean or tidy up and I have several books to read, but I had several projects all lined up that I wanted to start working on. I guess they will have to wait.  Have any of you had anything similar happened? Any advice?

Otherwise we had a very relaxing weekend. We basically did absolutely nothing. We watched church services online and several movies. We also watched the entire three seasons of the Netflix series called “Broadchurch.” It was very good. If you like detective stories and mysteries I think you would enjoy this one. We got our umbrellas and boots out and we took Chloe on several walks every day.  All in all, we’re liking this RV living.

Take care and I’ll talk to you all again soon.

Blessings and hugs,
Betsy