Tuesday, January 16, 2024

Over the snowdrifts and to the palm trees…

And off we go. We’re leaving tomorrow morning and the roads look “iffy” through Kansas and Oklahoma, but then again, I don’t know how often the map is updated. Once we get close to Wichita, it looks like the temps will be above freezing and I’m sure the roads will be fine.

I moved all of my plants close to the windows in the living room so it will be easier for Mandy to water them for me.

For some reason I noticed a few gnats flying around the plants yesterday. I looked up online how to get rid of them and made a concoction of apple cider vinegar, sugar, water and a couple drops of dish soap. Within an hour there were 8 gnats floating in it. It’s sitting on top of the fireplace. I haven’t seen any more gnats, but I’m going to leave the bowl there while we’re gone.

I’m waiting for my orchid to send up another flower stalk like it did last year at this time, but so far, there’s nothing. The violet is doing very well though, considering I got it out of the trash at Walmart, and it looked dead when I brought it home.

Dennis is modeling the shawl I finished last night. It’s the same pattern as the one I made last week. This is using Loops and Threads amethyst yarn, and a cream skein that I had without a label. Please excuse the bags in the kitchen on the counter. We’re getting things ready to put in the car and making dinner at the same time. Also watching cruise videos on YouTube to get in the cruise mood!🀣 Have any of you been watching the world cruise as it goes around the world? We’ve been watching the lovely couple you see on the TV screen and enjoying it very much. Their channel is “LivingPhase2”. They will be aboard the “Serenade of the Seas” for 280 days and go all the way around the world.

Last night I started these granny squares from stash yarn. I tried to match the colors as close as I could to the new Red Heart yarn that’s so popular right now. This is much less expensive.πŸ˜‚ Each one is 4 inches square and this will ultimately be a wheelchair blanket for a nursing home.

This photo was taken near Lincoln, NE, less than 40 miles from us. The road was cut from the drifts across the highway. Unbelievable. I did say we got a lots of blowing and drifting snow.πŸ₯ΆπŸ˜‚

We aren’t getting the Internet while we’re on the ship and I’m not taking my laptop with me anyway, so I won’t be able to comment on anyone’s blogs or even read them while we’re onboard. We just weren’t willing to pay $20.00/day for internet. This way there will be no pressure to be online for either of us and it will be a true vacation. If anyone wants to follow along, we’ll be on the Carnival Jubilee, sailing out of Galveston this Saturday, January 20. There is a camera on the bridge so that you can follow the ships progress.

I’ll be back in a couple of weeks. I’ll miss you all!

Blessings and love,

Friday, January 12, 2024

More Snow!

It’s snowing. Again. Kids here are on their third snow day for this week. Last night and this morning so far we’ve gotten 7.8 inches and it’s still snowing. The wind is howling and our wind chill at the moment is -27F! Poor Zoey. She’s terrified to go outside even in her little coat. We carry her outside and set her down and she immediately tries to get back in the building or up our leg. She does not like the snow. Lizzie, on the other hand, runs around and buries her head in it and won’t come back inside. 🀣

Dennis’s cousin Laura, who lives across the street from our old house, posted this photo on Facebook this morning of our old house. You can’t even see the front steps because of drifting. It’s just plain nasty out there. I can’t imagine trying to get up that hill today.
I started another prayer shawl yesterday. I wanted to send the latest batch of 12 shawls to the hospital with our pastor, who is a chaplain at the Med Center. I was going to give them to him or my sister who is a volunteer baby rocker in the NICU on Sunday, but we just got a notice that they’re canceling church at the building because of wind chills predicted at -50F or more. They’re doing services on Facebook instead.
I saw this picture on Facebook yesterday and laughed so hard. It’s a hat like Uncle Eddie’s in Christmas Vacation. Different people had commented that he also needs a robe and they could caption it, “the litter box is full Clark!” Those of you who have seen the movie will understand.

We took Mom out to lunch yesterday just before the storm hit. We went to a sports bar called DJs Dugout that has New York strip steaks every Thursday for $12.99. You also get a salad and any side dish you want. We go there a lot on Thursdays. She really enjoyed it. The waitstaff is really nice and you get points everytime you eat there. Yesterday we got almost $15.00 off, so it only cost $22 for all three of us to have steak lunches! Mom loves to go to lunch, so we take her out at least once a week. Of course she forgets by that evening that we went anywhere! She asks most days if we can go to lunch somewhere because she hasn’t been out in so long! 🀷‍♀️

I hope any of you in the path of the storms stay safe and warm. We’ve begun packing for our trip but swimsuits seem a little odd when you look out of the window. 😍

Blessings and love,

Tuesday, January 9, 2024


Happy Tuesday morning! Well, we finally got the snow that’s been predicted several times. We ended up with just a little over 6 inches, which doesn’t sound like much, but the winds are gusting to 40 mph, which is causing a lot of blowing, drifting and ice. The kids have been out of school yesterday and today. Toward the end of the week the HIGHS aren’t supposed to be above 0 F for 3-4 days. We’ve been spoiled by a very warm winter so far. This will be brutal! I hope it clears up a bit for out drive to Texas next week.

This photo is taken of the back garden area behind the condo. In the summer you can't see those houses, just the trees by the creek. There are coyotes and other small animals that live down there in the woods. This is where we take Zoey outside. She does NOT like the snow. We carry her outside and Dennis kicks an area clear of snow for her to use, then we carry her back inside. 

This is our balcony area. I don't think I'll be outside sipping tea today!
This is where I’m sitting instead. In my nice comfy chair in front of the fire.

I thought this was completely accurate for Zoey. Lizzie on the other hand, loves the snow and buries her face in it whenever she gets the chance.
I saw this photo on FB and was struck by how much this dog looks like Zoey, but it's not her. The yarn is the new Red Heart granny square yarn that automatically changes colors. It doesn't look like the dog is thrilled with it's new coat.

Miss Piper went to a painting class last week with two of her friends from when she was in pre-school. They go to different schools now but are still best friends. Pipers is the one on the left with the bumblebee. Isn't it beautiful? Purple is my favorite color and I love bumblebees too, so this is perfect in my book.πŸ’œ I think she did a great job.

I finished her sweater on Sunday and washed and blocked it yesterday. She hasn't tried it on yet though, because of the snow. I have the yarn to make her one more in either the pattern of her sage green sweater I made last month, or this one. After she tries this one on she'll let me know which pattern she wants the next one made in. That sweater will be a rusty orange color.

I started this prayer shawl for the hospital yesterday. It's just called the "Triangle Shawl" and it's free on Ravelry. I'm using an "H" hook and Caron Skinny Cakes in the Baked Alaska colorway.

Today is Dennis's birthday and we have no plans at all. We don't ever do much for our birthdays. Maybe go out to dinner somewhere. But because of the roads today, we're staying home and I'm making homemade noodles for chicken and noodles. Since my birthday is February 1, we're considering the cruise as a gift for both of our birthdays since it's right in between.  A much, much bigger gift than usual!

It's been very quiet around here since the new year. I've been knitting on Piper's sweater, dealing with Mom stuff, etc. and normal day to day things. I almost forgot to tell you that Dennis was able to take his hand brace off after six months! He has to keep it handy, no pun intended, until he goes back to the surgeon at the end of February. If he lifts anything heavy or shovels snow, etc., he still has to wear it, but for day to day, he's FREE! It's stiff and his wrist and arm are weak, but he's using it as he can and purposely trying to build up strength again in that arm.

I hope you all have a wonderful day and stay warm and dry if you're in the north and cool if you live in the southern hemisphere. As always, I’m keeping Israel, the hostages and it’s people in my prayers, as well as the innocents in Gaza.

Blessings and love,

Monday, January 1, 2024

Happy New Year!

How was your week in between Christmas and New Year’s Eve? Dennis was in bed by nine last night. I stayed up till long after midnight researching Alzheimer’s information for Mom. Really exciting, right? We are entering a new phase and she seems to have developed more issues over the past few weeks. It’s a confusing time for all of us as we try to navigate this road together.

Christmas decorations have been put away for another year. I always like to have the house back in order by January 1. We had music playing on the TV on YouTube. The three people you see on the screen are siblings who sing so beautifully together. I don’t remember what their names are though, as we’ve just discovered them this week.

Dennis took down the outside lights and put them away. Tomorrow he goes back to the surgeons office for X-rays to see if his hand is healed enough to take the splint off. You will probably hear him whoop for joy if he’s told he doesn’t have to wear it anymore. Six months has been a long time and he gets very frustrated at not being able to do the things he wants to.

I don’t know why this photo is so blurry, but this is Dennis‘s brother, Doug, Mom and Dennis on Christmas day when we had them all over for dinner. Doug‘s girlfriend took the photos and sent them to me. It’s crazy that they’re so blurry.

This is one of my favorite photos taken that day. Mom and her two boys. The Alzheimer’s is definitely getting worse and all of the activities this week have not helped. She has been very agitated and anxious.

I’ve been working on another sweater for Piper. It’s not progressing as fast as the last one, but we’ve had some very busy times over the past few weeks. Right now I’m knitting the shawl collar. This is the “Portage” pattern that I’ve made for Mandy and myself.

I’ve been driving back to our old apartment building twice a day to walk the dog of our neighbor there. She had surgery last week and isn’t supposed to walk Lucy yet. It’s surprising how much time driving there and back takes. It does help explain why I don’t seem to get much done around here right now.

I need to get busy packing for our trip. We leave in less than 2 1/2 weeks and I’ve done virtually nothing so far. We booked this cruise well over a year and a half ago and the time has finally arrived. We will be sailing on the brand new Carnival Jubilee that had its first cruise just this past week. It holds over 6200 people plus the crew! It’s a huge ship. We’re going with our friends, Neal and Jenny from Spokane. They are flying to Galveston, but Dennis and I are planning to drive down. Since we booked it so long ago, we got an amazing deal on the price. People who booked later are paying double and triple what we did for the same cabins. It is Dennis’s, Neal and Jenny’s first cruise, so I hope all goes well. 

A reminder of the love and promise that has been given to all of us.

Blessings and love to you in the new year.