Saturday, May 31, 2014

Tea and Sympathy

The fever released me from its clutches yesterday, but my throat is still sore and I am absolutely exhausted.  Being sick really takes it out of you, you know?

I've been drinking gallons of hot tea.  Do you know how many online tea stores there are?  It's fun to just go through them all and see the various flavors.  I've never been an iced tea drinker, belying my Southern heritage.  Milk was always served with dinner when I was growing up.  My husband, on the other hand, came from a family whose babies drank tea from bottles.  When we would go visit, my in-laws would have to make a special grocery run to buy milk for me.  And then Briton and Hannah.  It just wasn't in their house.

One thing I have been able to do is color.  Perfect when you were home sick from school when you were little, and perfect now.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014


Well, it would seem that, sometime during my trip, A Contagious Person breathed on me.  I woke up on Sunday with a sore throat, pounding head, aches, and a fever.  All three have gotten gradually worse, and now my chest is aching.  And I am SO tired.

Lots of sleeping and tea-drinking, moving all over turning the air conditioner on/off, putting on/taking off layers of clothes, sitting under/moving away from the ceiling fan as I sweat, freeze, burn up, get chills. . .

I'm just miserable.  

So, here are pictures of pretty colors to distract:

Sunday, May 25, 2014

A Drawn Line

Teaching Sociology as long as I did, I was involved in a lot of discussions about a lot of societal and cultural rights and wrongs.  Very, very sadly, a lot of those discussions were about guns and gun violence.

It was always my goal to get my students to understand that the vast majority of human behavior is too vastly complicated to be reduced to a single cause.  I sought to teach my children the same thing.

Were I teaching now, I've no doubt I could go into the classroom and give measured, reasonable, and plausible explanations of the murders and the murderer near Santa Barbara, California.  

But I'm not teaching.

I am still a mom.  And my daughter has been savagely affected by what happened there.  She has been struggling to deal with all that went on there, and none of my cool objectivity can help her a single bit.  When she finished a tweet with the hashtag "I Am At Risk," my heart shattered.

What are we doing to each other?  Why won't/can't we stop?

Friday, May 23, 2014

Here's One Thing About Pennsylvania

There are lots of parks.  Great big, beautiful parks.  Not the occasional, small squares of land here with a softball field and a few pieces of playground equipment.

Shari and I went to Covered Bridge Park in Allentown:

The river is something of a fly-fishing Mecca.  We came across a fisherman during our walk;  wholly picturesque.

The park also has a planet walk --- a scale model of the solar system which you can stroll.  From the side of the park where we started, Pluto was first.  (Thank you, Pennsylvania, for not leaving poor Pluto out.)

We only had time to walk to Neptune, but it felt like quite an accomplishment.

Thursday, May 22, 2014


It was very much a religious experience.  The man whose music has meant more to my life than anyone's and the woman whose friendship has does the same.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

I've Worked My Way North

And am in the very comfy den of my best friend Shari.  Nice flight up from Atlanta, though
I had a window seat.  Not the best place for an acrophobe like me.  I don't like seeing the planet fall away from me.  But I did get this nice picture.

It was a good flight, I was surprisingly un-stressed.  Son drove me to the airport, I could relax before take-off, and being with Shari is just as easy as you can imagine.

We did make one stop between the Philadelphia airport and Allentown.  My long-time friend Bridget works Sunday afternoons in a yarn store in downtown Philadelphia, and Shari was kind enough to take me by to see her.  Pen-pals-turned-Internet-friends actually meet in real life!

I even met Dug the Doodle Dog!

And, in a remarkable meeting of two worlds, Bridget and Shari bonded over the adorable Greta.

It's been a good day.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

That Red Envelope

is one of the happiest sights each month.  What will be inside the shiny, red envelope?

This month
my favorite needles.

A bouquet of mini-skeins.

Brownie Brittle, which Finn won't stay out of.  Delicious, and available at a couple of local stores, according to the website.

Three skeins of yarn made from recycled jeans, one in Orchid, two in Citrine.  If I hadn't already cast on for "Barry" and "Maurice," I'd be tempted to find something for these.

Any suggestions?

Finn also got something today.  He's been very patient, listening to the squeakers go into other bones --- he finally has his own.

Monday, May 12, 2014


A while back, I said I had a story for another day.  That day is now here.  But the tale is 45+ years old.

I am a stone-cold, almost-lifelong Bee Gees fan.  (As in, I have a crystalline memory of sitting in the swings in elementary school singing "I Started A Joke.")  When I was old enough to go to concerts, I'd go see them when they would come to Nashville.  One of those shows, my Daddy and I went to.  More often, I attended with my best friend, Shari.  Since middle school, she has endured, and enabled my fanaticism.  She was one of the first to check in on me when Maurice, and then Robin, died, leaving only Barry.

Shari lives in Pennsylvania now, so though we keep in touch, we don't get to see each other very often.   For her birthday this year, her husband gave her tickets to Barry's Mythology Tour stop in Philadelphia, and she invited me!  So, next Sunday, I'm flying up to see her, and to see Barry on the 19th.  Very excited.

Once the plans were certain, like any knitter would, I started thinking about what knitting I could take with me.  About that time, I found a trio of patterns at called --- how perfect is this --- Barry, Maurice and Robin.  All three feature stripes, which is how I came to mention the whole stripes thing earlier.  All I have to do is choose the yarns, and away we go. . .

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Skeleton Crew

Well, since I finished up the shipment of bones, knitting around here has been . . . bones.  Once you're in a groove, I guess. . .

I did spend time this afternoon going through all my knitting patterns, looking for anything that could possibly be turned into a dog or a cat toy.  There were a surprising number of things;  I'll post photos as I experiment.

Of course, going through patterns means seeing loads of things I'd like to get on the needles.  But there are two projects still waiting from before I started the dog toys, and, in a few days, I'll be casting on a couple of new things.  That story in my next post.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Bones Away!

Two boxes, 120 handknit cotton dog toys, on the way to North Carolina.


Time to relax a little.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Ten on Tuesday

Ten Things My Mother Taught Me

1.  How to knit
2.  To love books
3.  How to make easy and ridiculously good dumplings.
4.  To say "Sir" and "Ma'am"
5.  An appreciation for Jumbles, crosswords and jigsaw puzzles
6.  To always write thank you notes
7.  How to put up fruit, vegetables and jelly
8.  How to balance a checkbook
9.  How to backcomb hair
10.  How to piece a quilt

Friday, May 2, 2014


One of my loveliest knitting friends is Kim, at Love is All You Knit.  She and her husband have a Basset named Henry whom I've rather fallen in love with.  I asked if I could send him one of my knit bones, and today, got these photos.  Looks like my first field test has gone really well!


For some reason, this year I am constantly moving Christmas stuff around the house.  I'm not sure why things are so unsettled, but they...