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!πŸ’œ

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

Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Deal & Dover

You all seem very excited for photos of our trip to England so at the risk of boring you I will share some more today. we spent three days and two nights in Deal which is very close to Dover in Kent. I completely fell in love with this little town. Our hotel was directly across from the pier overlooking the English channel. And so with no further ado here are some more photos.

I found this sweet little yarn shop just one block from our hotel and next-door to the coffee shop we stopped in at each morning. I did find two skeins of sock yarn that I’ll be showing you later. The owner was so sweet and friendly and we had a nice chat. I would love to live in this little town and have this be my local yarn shop.

This is the ocean-front road. Our hotel is just left to the center, with the dark blue first floor.

The pier was directly across the road from us as you can see by the above photo. You can see the handrail in the lower left corner.

This is a very small view of the Queen Mum’s garden at, I believe, Walmer Castle. After a while I started forgetting the names of all of the castles. πŸ˜”

Here I am taking a walk in the water just below the white cliffs of Dover. I was the only one brave enough to walk in the water and it was surprisingly warm. The beach is very, very rocky and you definitely need to have water shoes on.

Stunning!

Dover Castle. This is where the plans were made and executed to rescue almost 300,000 soldiers from the beach in France during the War.

Photos cannot even begin to do justice to this amazing place. We spent seven hours there and also explored the underground tunnels that were used during the war. We could easily have spent another day there.

So beautiful!

How would you like to cook banquets in this kitchen?

The view was absolutely amazing. We walked around the tower wall which took quite a long time.

WOW!

Blogger got a few of the photos out of order. This is another view of the gardens at Walmer Castle.
The church and light house at Dover Castle.

Inside the church.
And not to be left out, yesterday was Piper‘s first day of third grade. Can you believe it? She loves her teacher and she had a wonderful first day.

This was the view Tuesday night from the place we used to stay in Washington on Loon Lake. They are under level three evacuation’s as I write this, which means “get out now.” I guess I’m relieved that we’re not camping there this summer, but we do have many, many friends there who are frantically making plans to pull their trailers out.  Many homes have already been lost. The fires this year in the west are just horrendous.
I have been trying to get this post up for two days but Blogger refused to let me post any photos until this morning. I wonder what it is with Blogger that it just decides to have these little glitches? Anyway, here you go and I hope you all enjoy them.

Have a wonderful Wednesday evening and I’ll be back soon.

Blessings,
Betsy




Friday, August 13, 2021

Home Again!

We are back home! I apologize for not posting sooner, but we were so busy all of our time in England. As soon as we were out of quarantine we took off exploring and didn’t stop until our feet touched the ground in Omaha again. We had an absolutely wonderful time. Are you ready for photo overload? The pictures I’m showing you today were all taken on the same day. On our first day out of quarantine we went to Stonehenge, the Salisbury Cathedral and the Winchester Cathedral. I’ll try to keep the comments to a minimum and just tell you where we are with each photo. I think the dark clouds lent an air of mystery to Stonehenge, don’t you? As you can tell by my hair, it was quite windy that day.



The sheep were right behind us when we took the two above photos at Stonehenge. A knitter can’t leave out photos of sheep can she?

We parked about a mile away and hiked up the road behind Stonehenge so as to avoid all of the tourist crowds.

Here we are in Salisbury at the Salisbury Cathedral. It has the distinction of having the tallest spire in England. It is a stunning church both inside and out.

And here we are with Alex being silly. His face reflects his feelings about that tall spire! Ha!

The inside is amazing. Masks weren’t required at a lot of places, but we tried to be respectful and wear them anytime we were indoors.


Isn’t it stunning?

And here we are at the gates leading out into the town High Street.

A beautiful little stream running through the middle of town. It always amazes me to see so many people out walking when we visit.

Then it was on to Winchester where we visited the Winchester Cathedral. We couldn’t go inside because of the concert that was taking place, but we did get some lovely photos of the outside.



One of the things I love about England is it’s beautiful gardens. Winchester was no different. Isn’t this lovely?

This is Keats Riverwalk and we strolled along a portion of it.

I love this picture of my two guys. Their pose is almost the same. We had such a great time with Alex.

Lunch was at a pub where we ate outside under umbrellas. The food on entire trip was amazing.

And that was the end of day one out of quarantine. We sure packed a LOT into that day and all of the others too. The best part was spending time with our kids. 

I am sorry for not posting more often, but we wanted to spend every second possible visiting. It had been 21 months, almost two years, since we had last seen Alex because of COVID, and we were determined to spend every second we could with him. Thank you for being patient and also for worrying about us.

I’ll stop here and give your eyes a rest before our next outing in the next post! πŸ˜€ I hope you’re enjoying the pictures.

Blessings and love,
Betsy