25 December 2011

Merry, merry!

 Friday was the day we shared festivities with the three of Jerry's five children and their families; that live in the area.  This shallow dish/platter, with autumn leaves, is one of my favorites received that day.  And I absolutely love this hemp necklace with an amber pendant/disk and the oblong wooden beads.  My husband's eldest son's wife made this for me and I put it on immediately.  It's just perfect.

This lapghan is shaping up quite nicely.  It's pictured in my last entry.  Since then, I've added ten more rounds.  I had thought I'd do an additional twenty, but now, I'm not so sure.  If I do that, it'll be over five foot square.  Currently it's a lil over three foot square.  Still undecided how large I do want it to be.

The center is based on reverse sequence of prime numbers under ten {7, 5, 3, 2, and 1}.  Then I included a white round to create space between that and the next sequence, which is based on the Fibonacci sequence under ten {0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, and 8}.  I'm actually just starting on the round of 8 claret.  Then I will probably do some white and finish up with teal and aqua.  It depends tho what I do from here, as far as actual number of rounds in which colors.

22 December 2011

Next Project

K, here is the center twenty rounds for Christi's afghan.  She's a lovely young woman who tends to the pups when we need her to do so.  She likes the throw I have draped over my recliner, so I thought that a nice "thank~you" afghan of her own would show some appreciation.

I'm using Red Heart's shocking pink, claret, real teal, aqua, and soft white.  If you saw my entry yesterday, you'll have clicked on the link that takes you to the Red Heart With Love giveaway sponsored by AllFreeCrochet.com.  Don't forget to enter daily!

This is about six hours worth of crocheting while watching the original Dr Who.  We're part way thru the second season.  Oh, and we watched TiVo'd X~Factor; yea! Melanie!

21 December 2011

Red Heart: with love

Earlier today, my husband and I delivered fifty hats, scarves, hoods, and hooded scarves that I crocheted, knitted, or loomed for the kids at the Palmer Home Orphanage.  The Palmer Home is unique in that they are committed to keeping siblings together.  There are five cottages {with an average of eight children at each, along with two house~parents} at the main campus in Columbus, MS.  Pretty cool how I made exactly enough so that everyone was able to pick an item!

I did speak with the admin ladies and let them know that if there are any special requests, folks wanting a hat in this style with those colors or some such thing; then just let me know and I'll see what I can do.  It's not hat/scarf weather here in MS yet, but in the new year, and for months to come; it gets pretty cold.  You wouldn't think that MS has a need for warm garments such as those accessories, but yes, we do.

For most of the hats, hoods, and hooded scarves, I used Red Heart yarns.  Speaking of which, I came upon this just now.  It is a giveaway for Red Heart's relatively new yarn, With Love.  It's an acrylic yes, but is so very soft and yet holds it shape.  I've spoken with a few folks who have used this for various projects, and they rave about it.  Our local WalMart doesn't carry the With Love; perhaps when I get to Tupelo's JoAnn's or down to Jackson's Michaels, I will be able to pick some up.  Our local WalMart has expanded their yarn section quite a bit, but at this point, Red Heart's With Love isn't available there.

However, check out the giveaway for the Red Heart With Love at AllFreeCrochet.com.  You can enter once per day til Jan 4.  So go check it!  Also, if you post a blog entry mentioning it, or Tweet about it, or FaceBook it, that counts as an extra entry into the giveaway.  I don't FaceBook, nor do I tweet, but I do blog.


13 December 2011

Sophie with Santa

My husband becomes Santa every December for a few events.  This past weekend, the Emerson Center, BrickFire Project, and a few other community efforts joined together to put on a Christmas Extravaganza.  It featured pictures with Santa, decorating cookies, wrapping gifts, making cards, singing songs, reading books, etc.  The event is always the second Saturday in December and it gets better every year, cuz every year an old kink is eased but a new one develops, or so it seems.  I think they are controlling the chaos pretty well, considering!

The main thing is that the kids love it and so do the adults.  Some children take to Santa right off and want to hang with him for hours and hours.  They have to be coaxed to move on so that others can spend time with him.  Then there are some children who will not, with any amount of coaxing, have anything to do with Santa.  He can be a big ole scary dude, with all that white fluffy hair and that can be a tad intimidating.

But mostly, it's fun to watch the kids pose with Santa and tell him their names and list all their wishes.  The funniest kid has got to be my friend's lil boy, Alex, almost three.  When asked what he wanted for Christmas, he replied with great enthusiasm, "presents!" and stuck to that answer when pressed for specifically what kind of present does he want.  It doesn't matter, a box to unwrap can be just as fun as whatever is inside the box, doncha know.

28 November 2011

my support group, uhm I meant "MY WRITERS GROUP"

"Hello.  I'm Debra.  I'm a short story writer."
     "Hello, Debra."
"I started writing words.  Then it graduated to paragraphs and then correspondence, ya know, letters.  Eventually it was group story style and then, well, then that wasn't doing it for me anymore...so I started to write short stories.  It's been affecting my relationships, cuz I snap at loved ones who interrupt me when I'm in the zone.  So, yeah, that's why I'm here."

When writers groups go support group style.

27 November 2011

Asian Persimmon

My first ever Asian Persimmon, lovely and local

18 November 2011


My husband is so very sweet ta me.  This summer, I taught myself to knit {being a long time crocheter, I heard a fair share of "you're doing it wrong" from traditional knitters who throw their yarn, whereas I'm a picker}.  My husband decided that he would treat me to a knitting retreat, a knittreat if you will.  So he picked this one, sponsored by the Pittsburgh Knitters and Crocheters, held at the Bedford Springs Hotel, Resort, and Spa.  We decided to combine it with a bit of a trip to my old stomping grounds and also a visit to my childhood friend who came down for our wedding two years ago.

Since this was a combination anniversary, birthday, and christmas present, my husband really went all out.  The trip was wonderful, some of it has been documented here in this blog.  The Bedford Springs Hotel was definitely a resort.  As you can see from the top picture, it is HAH~yuge!  And posh.

We were met by valets and bellhops.  We had turn down service, where they come in and fill your ice bucket and plump your pillows and make sure you have all the towels you could want.  They practically hold heated robes for you to don straight out of the shower, well, okey, they don't go that far.  We had a morning service, where they brought fresh coffee and tea, with honey, cream, and lemon, as well as the morning paper.

The food was phenomenal.  I almost expected them to pull out my chair, spread out my napkin on my lap, and tuck one under my chin.  They didn't, but I think if I'd've asked, they would've.  Very accommodating.

Very posh.  I felt like the Mississippi rube I am.

Oh, and the knittreat was cool, too.  But I was almost impressed more so with the hotel.  Obviously.

My husband, that man, he sure is sweet ta me.  sigh.
My husband, holding a can of diet Moxie, from the Catawissa Bottling Works, which is behind the house I spent my teen years in.

A childhood friend and me, outside of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

This is a covered bridge outside of my hometown, Catawissa, Pennsylvania.   I used to walk thru this bridge quite frequently.  It spans across Catawissa Creek.  When my husband and I visited Pennsylvania a few weeks ago, we drove around, and I showed him where I grew up.  I also showed him where my father grew up, where my mother grew up, where they met, where they wed, where my mom's parents are buried, and where I went to college.  It was definitely a trip down memory lane for me, as I haven't visited PA for ten years, having moved away over fifteen years ago.


A few months back, my husband and I bought this wine rack; but didn't hang it cuz we were gonna wait til the luan was moved.  Then we decided last week that the luan wasn't really in the way and we could go ahead and put the rack in place.  Besides, we had some wine from our trip north that we wanted to put somewhere, in the proper position {which is so that the cork stays wet, upright won't do}.  The wine in the center, in the blue bottle is Shade Mountain Vineyard's Anniversary White, a sweet table wine from Pennsylvania; which we intend to save til next year.

The lil glasses hanging there are from the only winery in Mississippi, Natchez's own Old South Winery.  We had gotten them while we were on our honeymoon.  Cuz these particular bottles are long and slender, the middle two glass slots are not being used as intended~~but that's ok, cuz I figured the cork~screws were in keeping with the wine theme.

She wore a looooooooooooooooooong HAT

Okey dokey, below is a shot of all three hats {the reversible, the long, and the multi~brim} all nested on inside the other~~the Russian Dolls of Middies' Hats.

Below and to the left is the multi~rimmed hat, which oddly enough resembles the headgear Whoopi Goldberg's character wore in that Sci~Fi show {uhm  StarTrekk:  The Next Generation}.

I did not think that an adolescent boy would wear it, but ya never know.  Sometimes kids don't need to conform in order to be cool.  Or in this case, warm.

17 November 2011

reversible hat

My childhood friend's sons' school colors are silver and blue, altho they look blue and white in the sport pix I found online.

So I made her two younger sons hats while I was visiting.  But I ran outta time while making the third hat.  So I decided to make a few when I got back home.

  This is one of the hats.  It is reversible.  One side is mostly grey.  Turn it so the grey side is in and the outside is grey, blue/grey, and blue.

I also made two other hats to send too.  One is very long and one is kinda creative.  I may post pix of those in another entry.

She did what?

Unrelated to the welcome leaf that my husband hung next to the front door, as seen to the left, is how Jerry and I can crack each other up.

So yesterday was my birthday {41, is that even possible?  I'm sure that my folks were just that old not so very long ago...} and it was also the last meeting of Cafe Scientifique for the semester.  They usually meet on Tuesdays, which means that last year, they met on my birthday.  This year, this month's meeting was moved to a Wednesday, which meant that it was also on my birthday.  Perhaps next year, they will move the meeting to Friday, so that it is on my birthday {I think next year is a leap year, so we're skipping my birthday being on Thursday this time around}.  Is it possible for me to say "my birthday" once again?

My birthday.

Yes, it is possible.

So yesterday, my husband and I met at Harvey's for dinner before the meeting and then stayed for the presentation.  I learned something about Mississippi and our water that I didn't know; the water in Mississippi is owned by the citizens of Mississippi and not by the individuals who own the land that water is found on.  Wow.

But that's not what cracked my husband and I up.  No.  It was this:  I said to him, "earlier today, I surprised myself..." and then he laughed.  I reviewed what I said and what I did and waited for him to tell me what he found funny, with a preparatory half~smile starting on my own face.  He snickered and then said, "I'm sorry, but I pictured you leaping out in front of a mirror, arms spread, yelling "surprise" at yourself."

I snickered too, cuz not only could I picture the scene, but also cuz if you saw yesterday's post, you'll see that I did take a pic of myself in front of a mirror.  I got so tickled by the image of me surprising myself by leaping around and yelling "surprise" that I forgot what I had started to relate about surprising myself.

It still hasn't come back to me.  I must not have been all that surprised after all.

Oh!  And one more time..."my birthday".

30 October 2011

There's an app for that.

So after drinking a large travel cup of coffee, I was thrilled to see restrooms at a lil scenic overlook in the Smoky Mountains.  I quickly zipped up to the door, where a woman was scowling intently at her phone, while standing in the doorway.  Finally, she moved, heaving a huge sigh.  I flew in and realized that it was just a potty, like those in an outhouse or porta~potty.  No sink.  "That's ok," I thought, as I plunked down on the toilet~lid covered hole.  Right before I realized there was no toilet paper.  None.  There was an empty cardboard roll where toilet paper should be.  But no paper.  I clawed up in the holder, thinking, hoping, that there was some squirreled away.


So when I went back to the car, I passed a woman getting off a motorcycle and I told her that she might want to take some tissue or a napkin with her as there was no paper there.  Then I said that it would have been awesome if the woman before me would have said something to me about it.

Then again, she was scowling at her phone.

Perhaps she was searching for an app for that!

The Grotto by Bro Joe

Yesterday, we stopped to see the Ave Maria Grotto.

Bro Joe did 125 replications of well known structures.  Most of them are not entirely accurate, but the resemblance is awesome.  Especially considering that many of these are constructed from marbles, cold~cream jars, trinkets and jewelry, seashells, and various miscellaneous items such as buttons and drawer pulls.

Does the Wall look huge?  Well, see the pic below to get an idea of scale!

26 October 2011

first knit wrap

first knit wrap.

{happy birthday, mom}


folded in half.

creative tids 'n' bits

my husband sketched this and gave it to me for our second anniversary.




this is the largest knit project i've attempted.

it will be a wrap, for my mom.




16 October 2011

a few tids and bits

 Awhile back, we had to get a new camera.  So this lapghan was something I did this summer, a few months ago.  But it's the first time I was able to get my picture taken, saved, and uploaded.

So this is a turqua lapghan for the VA hospital in Jackson.

Sophie turned a year old earlier this month.  My husband made her a "cake", using a can of dog food {a real treat as she's never had wet food like that!} sandwiched between two slices of bread, soaked in gravy.

Complete with a candle and everything!!

This leaf we bought in Natchez.

It fits in nicely with the rest of our autumnal decor.

When we got home from Natchez, there was a package waiting for us.  While I was unpacking our bags, my husband unpacked the box and set out my anniversary present~~pumpkin tea set!!

So immediately I made us some mango/peach tea!  The pot and cups are microwavable, so I filled the pot with water and zapped it.  I let the tea steep and poured it into the two cups and guess what?  It was exactly the right amount.


12 October 2011

would the real results please come forward

Okey dokey, so I expressed my concerns, anxiety, and puzzlement with my counselor earlier.  I didn't know for sure whom to speak with and which way would be the best way to approach the whole breastestes questions.  My counselor helped me sort thru some stuff, and then we made some decisive calls and whoa and behold we talked with the actual radiologist to ascertain that my left breast doesn't have the new unfamiliar dense pea and that it was my right breast that had the mass.  The doc verified that yes, that was right {as in correct, also that it was my right and not the left breast: right in every way}.  So I am much relieved.  I then went back to the office and showed the nurse that the document reads "left" when it was my right breast which hid the pea and the right I had ultrasounded and the right that was biopsied.  So yup, I'm way more assured today than I was yesterday.  Yea!!!

Here's the thing:  no indication of malignancy.  Yea!!  Yea for breastests!

11 October 2011

results: yea...?

please note, this is not me; notice the absence of tattoos
"Mild fibrocystic disorder of breast with micro cyst formation and focal duct epithelial hyperplasia.  NO evidence of malignancy..." {emphasis on NO is mine}

So I'll go back in six months for a follow~up ultrasound to have my right breast lubed and viewed.  I'm pretty stoked!  I do, however, have to return tomorrow to correct something in my charts.  But that's minor.

Or should be.  I fear that if it's not corrected tho, at some point, there may be some confusion regarding my left breast.   My diagnostic records show that it was my left breast with the pea, but it was my right breast biopsied.  Ok.  So uhm, should I be concerned about this?  Is the pea really in my right breast, and so the specimen was mislabeled?  Or is the pea really in my left breast and my right was biopsied, but perhaps the left should have been?

I'd laugh, but I'm not sure if it's really that funny.

06 October 2011

Balls, Birthdays, Boobs, & Books

Saturday morning, my husband will be attending the MSU game at B'ham; whilst I take my friend out for brunch.  That evening, she is having a hah~YUGE birthday bash, with Mexican food, margaritas, and rich deep dark chocolate cake.  Yea for football!  Yea for birthdays!

October is National Book Month.  Read one.  Read two.  Hell, read a bunch!  Read one for every day of the month, or at least for every week.  Do your bit.  Yea for books!

This month marks the 25th anniversary of National Breast Cancer Awareness month.  Last month, I visited the women's clinic to have my yearly exam; I didn't realize that I wasn't actually due for a pap til NEXT November.  Silly me, apparently since my insurance changed their coverage to only reimbursing every two years; that's now the standard in care.  Here I was thinking that all the hype about yearly paps was for my own good.  Silly me.

While the doc was poking at me, but not doing a pap smear, he said, "ahhh, I think you are past due for a mammogram."  Wow, you can tell that from way down there?  I am impressed.  So can you also tell if I'm due for a tooth cleaning?

So before I left, their office called over to the Breast Health Care Clinic {that is the actual name, we take mam~management seriously here} and scheduled a pat down for me, cuz they're nice like that.  Tuesday, I show up, they squish me, and take some lovely pix with their x~ray specs.  Then I go to perch until they ogle the lovely shadows and interpret them using their magical mystical methods.

Now I am a very lumpy bumpy person, always have been.  But fluid filled simple cysts always raise the alarm, just cuz they want to make sure that they really are what they appear to be.  So I was not at all surprised that they wanted me to return for an ultrasound that afternoon.

Except when I viewed the mammogram results, there was something that didn't look like the run~of~the~mill floating fluid sacs that make my breasts so much more fun.  There was a dense pea just sitting there, by itself, deep within my right breast.  The other usual cysts are easily manipulated, just under the surface of my skin, and they are diffuse.  This pea was very dense, a bright lil piece of gravel that looked different in every way possible.  So, I was all, "yeah, let's check that out."

A few hours later found me slathered with boob~lube and a scanner showing some simple cysts.  The doc kept saying, "yeah, that's a big one, but totally benign" and "that one too" and "oh yeah, that one too."  Finally, he just started chanting, "simple cyst, simple cyst, simple cyst".  Sorta like he was checking off a grocery list.

I asked him what it looks like when it isn't a simple cyst.  He stops, turns to me, giving me all his attention.  He describes how a mass that isn't a simple cyst tends to be so dense that it doesn't let the sonic sound waves pass thru, so this shadow is cast.  I nod my head, just imagining, cuz I've only ever seen my fluid~filled simple cysts which allow sound waves to pass right thru, cuz fluid is like that~~a great conductor of all sorts of waves.  He turns his attention back to the ultrasound screen and replaces the scanner on my breast and immediately a black void with a trailing shadow appears.

I didn't giggle, or say, "oh, ya mean like that?  Does it look like that?"  Cuz the answer was obvious and not everyone shares my love of well timed moments.  I did point out that the pea is a just a lil guy, about a centimeter and a half it looked from the film.  Yes, he agrees, about a centimeter point seven, actually.  So, I say, about half an inch.  Uhm yes, he confirms.

If this lil pea is cancer, it would be stage one.  Easily removed, a lumpectomy.  The treatment tends to be a few weeks of follow~up radiation to make sure that any stray cancer cells are killed off.  Easy peasy.

That would be worst case scenario.  But in all likelihood, the pea is a calcified nodule that happens as women age.  So today, I went in for a biopsy.

First, they tried to aspirate it.  A lil thin needle goes down into a fluid filled sac and then the fluid is drawn up into the needle and the sac shrinks.  I've had it done multiple times, in various locations {including my thyroid, back when I had one}, cuz I am a lumpy bumpy person.

But this is a solid mass, not aspirateable, as it were.  So out comes the core needle which is some larger in bore and has a grooved tip.  A spring loaded gun pushes the sharp lil corkscrew into the solid mass and takes a sample of the tissue to be sent off to be analyzed.  The sound when it fires off is like an industrial staple gun, or an air nail gun {if you are into construction and are more familiar with air guns then office equipment}.

I asked if they just couldn't remove the pea.  I mean, it's lil, and the needle could probably suck it right up.  At any rate, they did take three samples.  I should know what the pea's composition is on Tuesday.  What a week!

Due to the pounding and poking and prodding, my right breast should be particularly colorful tomorrow.  Right now, I'm sporting a wad of bandages taped to my breast.  The nurse practically wrapped the tape under, across, and over so that half of my breast is swathed in wide white tape.  That will feel oh so good coming off, I'm sure.

Every one should have so much fun!

03 October 2011

My special eyes, my cat eyes

So about ten days ago, I wrote a lil letter to Zenni~Optical; and POOF!  Speedy service, they rushed making three pairs of glasses for me and sent them to me priority.  Here I am, rockin' the retro cat~eye frames.  I love, Love, LOVE these glasses.

Love 'em.

And so does my husband.

Cuz he loves me, and is clearly biased.  I think he would love whatever I put on my face.  But he really does like these.

25 September 2011

Cool Stumble Upon find

For that extra huge appetite!
I feel like I ate this, instead of the several normal sized hamburgers I did have today!

If you want to see some other awesome pumpkins, decorated in unique ways, head over to this site!


Another project, finished!

This is a shot of the newly painted master bedroom, tah~DAH!!!  My mom, she's the absolute best, in so many ways.  Thanks for the lovely wedding present.

Jerry hang the new blinds and the chocolate brown curtains this evening, in both the bedroom and the bathroom.  Yea!!  The color of the paint is peppermint tea, from WalMart.  It's a light, frothy, frosty, pale green that is so soothing and refreshing.

On one of the bedposts is an assortment of hats that I'd made my husband a few years back.  The black and gold is for our local high~school yellow jackets.  The maroon and white is for MSU {go dogs!}.  There is a blue watch cap that he calls his skittles cap.  And the silver and black is for the raiders {his team from way back}.

Mom also painted the master bath for us, too.  In the magazine rack are several editions of Crochet Today!  The floor is not finished, eventually, it will have tile~~there's no rush.

24 September 2011

Ferah's Fantastical Funky Formal Fortieth

My husband spent the morning building a box; a large, heavy, durable box fastened with screws and painted black.  So when I got home, he was sweaty, dusty, and marked up with paint.  It's for my friend.

Ferah is turning forty next month.  She is having a wildly funky formal birthday bash in a few weeks.  There will be mexican foods, margaritas, and plenty of dancing.  I'm planning to wear my wedding dress.  It's champagne, cocktail~length, sleeveless, satin, and two years old.  I might even wear my veil, cuz it's cool and very would be a funky thing to do, fitting the theme.

Yesterday, my husband and I met at the Mexican restaurant down by the high~school cuz the Yellow Jackets played a home game last night.  We were the first few folks to arrive, at 4, well before the dinner crowd.  Normally, we both are very careful not to drink and drive, but we figured since kick~off was at 7:30, we had a few hours.  I was gonna get a margarita, but then my husband decided to have one too.  So we ordered a pitcher.  A half~dozen swallows into his, my husband decided he didn't want anymore.  So I drank the entire pitcher.  Minus a half~dozen swallows.

Then, I went to the football game.  I have to say, it was the drunkest I've been in about ten years.  And it was the best time I've ever had a game.  I was very energetic by the end of it, the buzz was dying off, I thought, and so I drove to WalMart, my husband followed me.  If I had doubts, I would have left my car and come home with him and returned in the morning.

It turns out, while I was in WalMart, that I realized that the buzz hadn't really worn off at all.  It was lying dormant.  Once I started to walk around, all that blood got to moving around and I told my husband that I wanted to buy my friend, Ferah, the one who turns forty next month, the one I mentioned in the beginning of this, a pamper me kit for her birthday.

He supported my decision to load the cart with liquid soaps, bubblebaths, shampoos, conditioners, lotions, facial scrubs and masks, shower~poofs, candles, baby oils, etc.  Basically all the accouterments you'd need for pampering a girly~girl.  But they didn't have a basket big enough.  So I tossed around the idea of loading it all in a rectangular laundry basket, displayed with tissue paper and then my husband, my wonderful husband, said, "ya know, I could build her a box.  Ya know, a pamper box, with all her pamper stuff."

Sure, that sounds great!  And is incredibly sweet.  So we finally get home around MIDNIGHT.   At 9:30 this morning, my husband wakes me so that I can make it to the BookMart by ten, cuz I told the fiber friends I'd be there.  He then builds this box for Ferah and all her lovely stuffs.

Turns out, this box is heavy.  The stuff is heavy.  I think we will have drive to B'ham, sneak the stuff and the box into her house, load it and all that once it is on the table, cuz there is no FRIGGIN' way that we can carry that.  We'd need a hand~truck {a dolly}.  Or a wheelbarrow.  Or the Incredible Hulk.  On crack.

So my husband and I are staring at the box, and he turns to me and says, "you can tell Ferah that I spend all morning playing with her box, in the driveway."  I replied, "she'd like that."

Crafting at the Cafe

This morning, I went to the BookMart DownTown here is Starkville to meet up with a few crafters.  I finished one knitting project, started another, and began to plan what other projects I want to work on in the near future.  I had told fellow fiber freaks that I would stay til 2p; however, the screaming, demanding, whining toddlers did me in and so I packed it in early and left at a quarter past one.  Why people feel compelled to dress their tots in cute lil university outfits and then drag them cranky to a football game, with packed crowded and rowdy stadiums, when the kid is gonna be out of sorts...is beyond me.

That's like popping your kid into a stroller and spending hours at the local fair.  The kid's eye~level is at the same level as your thighs, so for hours, that kid is lost in a sea of ass.  Bobbling fat asses encased in tight denim, releasing fumes from fair food.  Oh how glorious that child's life must be, as they ride rough~shod over bumpy gravel, strapped into a sticky torture chamber.  Poor thing.

People, you may think that it's so very awesome that you take your tykes to each and every game, cuz you are a diehard fan.  But your child is not gonna remember having spent game~time as a several days, months, or even years old.  I'm thinking most kids are not going to remember even as a small child of three or four, sitting with you at the game, let alone what the hell is happening on the field.  Now, if your kid is thoroughly enjoying the game experience, great!  Chances are tho, that if you kid is needing a nap, not great with change or strangers, teething, or having just recently acquired crazy~mad skilZ like crawling, walking, or running; then they are not enjoying the confinement of your lap with lots of confusing smells, sounds, and weirdos jostling them about.  So if they won't remember what a swell time it was, and they aren't having fun at the present time; then why are you dragging them thru this and making everyone else miserable too?  WHY?

One couple that was at the BookMart with a sobbing toddler in tow was the deal~breaker and that's when I left.  The kid kept screaming, "why??  oh, why??  why are we here???  why are we here, DAD????"  It would have been humorous, were it not so annoying.  Also, I was tempted to start screaming, "why??  oh, why??  why are you here??  why are you here, DAD??" right along with the kid.  And parents tolerate that crap from their own adorable {not} offspring, but not from adults who hopefully would know better.

I'd hope the parents would know better, too.

Hope springs eternal.

22 September 2011

Dear Zenni~Optical

{This is an eMail I sent to the Zenni~Optical folks earlier this evening.  Cuz I like their products, but am not thrilled with this particular situation.  However, the glasses/frames that others I know have from Zenni are holding up just fine; indeed my other pair are as well.}

Hello!  Earlier this year, I ordered two pair of glasses from you {order#zippittee~dooh~DAH}.  I have enjoyed them immensely and receive many compliments.  I'm like a representative for your company, referring to your website and bragging on you.

Well, guess what happened?  No, don't guess!  We'll be playing eMail tag forever.  Instead, I'll just tell ya.

Earlier this evening, I was cleaning my glasses {the regular ones, not the shades} and the arm snapped right off.  The bottom plastic corner piece that holds the screw that attaches the arm to the front part {eye pieces} sorta disintegrated.  Because that part was in crumbly plastic bits, I can't really fix it.  I don't have anything to hold the screw in the bottom; I mean the screw would go thru the top loop, down thru the arm, but the bottom piece with the hole for the screw is missing~~just a lone jagged piece survives.

So uhm, frame#zippittee~dooh~DAH {a sort of caramel color that matches my hair, at least this month it does, next month, I'm thinking pumpkin orange would be suitable, don't you agree?  yes!  I thought you would!} isn't wanting to stay on my face any longer.  Oh, bother.  {sigh}.

What might you suggest?  Can I send the broken frames in for repair?  Can you salvage the lenses?  Do I need to just chalk this up to an extremely short~lived pair of specs?  I know my prescription is the same, as I just had my eyes examined earlier this year and since I keep my old prescriptions on file, I know that over the years, my Rx hasn't changed that much since I began wearing glasses at the age of nine {I'm forty}.  At any rate, I've never had a pair of glasses leave my face so soon.  It's heart~rending, it is.

I will wear my lovely rose~shades with the rose~tinted lenses tomorrow and perhaps for awhile til I get plain untinted lenses in reliable frames, cuz dude/tte{s}, I must wear glasses.  Otherwise, I'm like Mr Magoo, and driving would be an adventure.  Especially for my passengers.

You're lovely folks, you are.  And tomorrow, I will attempt to view your site when I am more awake and able to make decisions.  In the meantime, please advise me.  And let me know, why, oh why did this pair die?  Do have a wonderful Thursday.  Thanks so very much for your consideration, Debra

09 September 2011

the next project

Long time readers may recall that when I moved in with my now~husband over two and a half years ago, my mom had given me an awesome wedding~gift.  She would help me clean, and paint, the entire interior of my new home.  She had come over and spent about five or six weeks at that time.  We cleaned and painted the huge open living area which includes the living area, the dining area, the breakfast nook, and the kitchen; and one bedroom and one bathroom.  Later that year, a month or so before my wedding, she and my brother returned and painted three guest rooms in the addition and laid tile flooring in those rooms as well.

Last year, we never really coordinated things well, either when she could spend sufficient time, or when I felt lively enough to want to do any major cleaning/painting.  Besides, I wanted to have a few visits with my mom that weren't working~vacations.  And also there was my husband's wreck and then a five~month house~guest.  So we thought we'd wait a bit.

This year, my mom was bound and determined to make it happen; so Wednesday evening she arrived with her brushes and her knee~pad.  Yesterday, we did a few errands around town.  This morning, we started in on the master bedroom, with plans to also do the master bath.  For now, it's mostly cleaning and painting; the floors must wait to be tiled for a later date.

So enter Krud~Kutter deglosser and prep for the painting.  That stuff is strong, good, and very very effective.  Mom is applying the first coat of primer for most of the room.  A second coat of primer is applied as well.  We use KilZ primer, great stuff!

Then she does two top coats of the satin {or semi~gloss} paint.  We are sticking with what is called "peppermint tea".  All but one room so far has been painted in this color.  Peppermint tea is a light frothy frosty pale green that is soothing and refreshing.

In the future, we have one rather large front bedroom to do~~I still need to clear it out and go thru all the clutter in there.  And back in the addition, we do have a small room, the bathroom, and the wide hall to do.  As well as laying new tile in all but three rooms.

We're not in a rush.  Each time a new section is done, we feel oh so much better.  My husband says that he never notices how much the walls and floor do affect him until they are cleaned and painted; then he feels so much lighter.  I know what he means!

When I was growing up, my mother repainted our kitchen and sometimes the bedrooms ever other year or so.  It felt so much more better, to have that freshly cleaned and painted room.  I can't describe it quite right, but if you've experienced it, you know exactly what I'm talking about.  Ahhhhhhh.

I'm disgusted with the dust~dogs under my bed, behind my dresser, in the corners, hanging from the ceiling.  I call them "dust~dogs" cuz they are fine spider~webs that have caught dog hair in the corners; wads of dust that are more dog hair piled under the bed; drifts of dog hair that are settled behind dressers; so much so that we could easily construct several other dogs with all the shed dog hair.  I love Shaddow, but I will not ever get another large dog.

My floors are in a constant state of nastiness, cuz I have admitted defeat in the battle of scrubbing them clean.  My husband and I both use the broom when it gets to the point that the drifting, settling dog fur piles encroach on our space.  I always forewarn folks that my floors are not ever so clean you'd want to eat off them.  I shudder when a small child crawls around on them, and apologize to the parents ahead of time if the knees of their pants are dirty after chasing the lil chiweenie around.  It seems that when we sweep, it just stirs up the grit and fluffy fur so that when it resettles, the same clumps of hair is there yet again.  {sigh}

At least my walls are lovely!  And other than my floors, I think we have a fairly clean, clutterless home.  Well, maybe not so clutter~free at this moment, as I have tools spread across the table, yarn piled here, fabric piled there, and books here and there.  Once the bedroom is done, I can put things back into place.  So I can deal with the clutter.

For now.

I think.

01 September 2011

stumble upon

This past week has been a bit odd for me and I'm exhausted.  But I didn't want to go to bed too early, as I knew that waking in the middle of the night wide eyed would not leave me feeling refreshed.  So I'm listening to my audio~book while my husband is watching MSU at Memphis {pht~ballZ}.  Since I'm sitting at the computer, I thought I'd stumble upon a few sites and see what's what.  Usually there are a plethora of cute pix that others have marked to share with others.  Rarely do I find something that I want to go, "hey! check this out!"

But I did just now.  Kelly Harman's blog, Did I Say That Out Loud? cracked me up.  The first entry I read was posted yesterday, entitled "Why 6th Grade Boys are Evil".  She relates an incident that results in her going to work to meet with her boss, a former litigator, dressed in nylons and a trenchcoat, forgetting to pick up her power~suit from the cleaners.  I actually did snicker while reading this.

If you need a few light~hearted snippets to make you smile, you might want to give this blog a read!  Check it!

28 August 2011

scarf it up

Dude!  Here it is, the end of August and I have yet to reconcile that it still isn't May.  How did this happen?  I know that time seems to fly by faster, the older I get.  But this summer seems to have been a long day of sizzling heat, not more than a week long at the most.  And here it is, almost September already.

What have I done this year?  I honestly cannot think of any one thing, but when I do ponder, I can come up with a bunch of lil things.  But this year wasn't dedicated to any one thing, except maybe developing more of my knowledge of fiber~arts.  The anatomy of stitches fascinates me.  In the spring, I crocheted hats and scarves for various charities.  Moving into summer, I began to work on lapghans for the vets at the VA hospital in Jackson, MS.

Then I took a break from that to pick up knitting needles and pick at some yarn, holding it exactly as I would crochet.  I learned more about how loops interconnect and what sort of fabric that yields.  Scarves make wonderful swatches to teach myself, by experimenting with this method and then that; and what happens then when I combine this with that?  Those scarves will go to the kids over at Palmer Home in Columbus, the next county to the east.

Now, I'm ready to pick up crochet hooks again, finishing a few more lapghans.  And when I need to take a break from that project, more scarves are needed as there are between eighty and a hundred kids at Palmer.  There are also kids over at Sally Kate Winters in West Point, MS.  And scarves are needed for the Special Olympians in 2012.

And I have not even begun to think of holiday stuff yet.  And here it is September.  Already.

14 August 2011

knots of love

On Saturdays, there is a small group of crafters that gather for a cuppa and companionship at the BookMart DownTown on Main Street in Starkville, Mississippi.

Yesterday, four of us helped to celebrate Knots of Love's knotting and knitting in public day from ten til two.

Knots of Love can be found here:  knots-of-love.org

It's a way cool organization, that gives warm soft handmade caps to over three hundred treatment centers for their clients who have had traumatic hair loss due to disease {such as cancer} or other causes {some forms of high stress cause folks to lose their hair such as witnessing a horrible accident, being involved in a fire, or loss of a loved one}.  To find out more about the organization's activities and how you too can help them reach their goals, visit them at knots-of-love.org

10 August 2011

Ready Brek...?

Because I've been doing lots of wasteful things instead of primarily focusing on constructive things of late, I have been reading lots of blogs lately.  See, I belong to a group called Ravelry {link in the left bar} which focuses on us yarny types {fellow fiber freaks, yea!!}.  And in that community, many people list their blogs on their profile pages.  And if I like their work, or find them interesting, or just want to kill time doing absolutely nothing directly creative; I go blog gandering.

And I find out lil interesting tid~bits of trivial knowledge that have no significant import other than my then thinking/writing about them myself.

Enter "Ready Brek".  In the photo, it appeared to be a bowl of smushy oatmeal gripped in a chubby toddler's hand.  But I googled it lest I assume incorrectly that Ready Brek referred to instant breakfast in the guise of quick oats.  And yes, it is.

However, WIKI gave me pause as apparently Ready Brek is not only available in original, SuperOaty, and Honey...but CHOCOLATE.  My brain stuttered a bit as I tried to conceive of choco~oats in the form of a hot breakfast like oatmeal versus the super~surgared chocolatee children's dry cereals.  UuuuhmmmMM...?

And then, I remembered the conversation I had a few years back regarding peanut butter.  The Aussee I was chatting with while eating a fluffer~nutter {a marshmallow creme confection which draws puzzlement here in the South} shuddered over the thought of peanut~butter and jelly.  "Why would you do that?"  {shudder, shudder}  "What would possess you people to do such a horrible thing?"  I thought she meant mixing legumes with jelly.

But no.  She clarified that it was a horrible fate, sticky jelly smothering those poor beans.  Wasn't it bad enough that we made paste out of them?

Uhm.  Vegemite anyone?

31 July 2011

Knit Wit

Well, dudes, I've been knitting and witting.  This is scarf number five.  Or six.  I have two others on needles in the works.  One is in my car and the other is here in the house.  It's just that I wanted to try a different stitch combination for a medium to thick ribbing, that had some stretch to it, so that is why I started this one yesterday afternoon.  It's about three feet right now.

I just lectured my husband on priorities.  Namely, his health versus having a splendid yard.  I know the yard work is very important to him.  His health is important to me.  Why would his health be jeopardized by the yard work?

Well, ya know how hot every where is right now?  In Mississippi, we have lots of humidity as well.  This means that what may be a HOT day, may actually be a dangerously hot day, once the heat index is taken into account.

So this coming week our high TEMPS {without the heat index} are:  Monday 98, Tue 99, Wed 100, Thurs 101, and Fri 100.  He wants to take Wed off from his work at MSU to mow about four or five acres.  So I said that I understand he wants to mow {cuz all that humidity is making our grass and weeds get rather unruly, fast}, but I worry about him.

Compromise?  I told him to come in and shower at 2pm and plant his butt in his chair, eat popsicles, and watch tv til at least 4p.  Then if he still feels that he just absolutely needs to get out there, he can.  The hottest part of the day is usually between two and four, here.

I'd just like to say that at seven this evening, the heat index read 104.  SEVEN o'clock.  104!  So just imagine what the heat indexes are going to be like in the middle of the day when the temps hit triple digits.  I'm just sayin'.

29 July 2011


Wow!  Earlier today I received the 1960s vintage Sears interchangeable knitting needle kit, similar to the one pictured here.  Earlier this week, I won the bid on eBay for it and ended up paying less than half {including shipping} than what modern interchangeable knitting needle kits go for when they are on sale.  I was so excited that I resembled a toddler getting her hands on a lego set for the first time.  My husband was all excited that I was excited!

AND I went to the monthly meeting of the local knitters guild this evening.  That was before I realized that the package addressed to my husband contained this kit.  I had an excellent time and enjoyed meeting the ladies.

BUT WAIT!!!  That's not all!  My husband and I are going to PA to a Knittreat in November.  It'll be our gift to each other.  I'm so excited!

AND!  I have made some adjustments to some meds and feel much more energetic and more enthusiastic about things {especially since I'm not dragging}.

BUT WAIT!!  {are you expecting a plea that if you order now, in the next five minutes, you too can receive a set of extra~sharp knives for two easy payments of some amount ending with a nine or a five,  AND you also will receive the tomato you can cut with the sharp knives??  are you??}  I've been meeting with other local fiber freaks, and I'm excited about that too!

I must go to sleep now, all this excitement is exhausting!  grins, debra

22 July 2011

JoAnn's sale

JoAnn's online had a sale, all their yarn was thirty percent off.  Out of hundreds of selections, I narrowed down my final choices.  LionBrand Jiffy has been a favorite of mine from when I first was able to try it years ago when our local WalMart carried it.  I chose the autumnal colors of our wedding~~gold, rust, and wine.

I saw that RedHeart has some new cotton that I wanted to try.  I've never even seen it before {not in person, just online}.  So I thought a sale would be the perfect time to get it.  I got tangerine and currant.  Yea!!  Yea for me!  And yea for whomever gets the final crafted product using these scrumptious fibers!

20 July 2011

knit this from that

I've been having lots of fun with experimenting with knitting these past ten days or so.  So this scarf that I'm doing here is actually being knit off of another piece that I was knitting this past weekend.  I've taken a break from my brother's afghan, am not terribly sure when I will get back to it; soon, I think.  Having a blast and that's what's key, right?  RIGHT?!?

That's what I thought, too.

By the way, the scarf is folded back on itself, altho it kinda looks like I've knit an oven mitt with a really, Really, REALLY long thumb.

14 July 2011

slow progress on the brother's afghan

ok, I've been getting really distracted lately; trying out all sorts of new methods and techniques with knitting, that I haven't been spending nearly enough time focused on crocheting my brother's afghan.  {sigh}  BUT WAIT!!  My mom's visit has been delayed and since I'm planning to send it home with her, I have more time to get crackin'!