Sunday, March 29, 2015

YOP Week #39

I have skipped several weeks here on YOP but that's because my priorities have shifted.  Blogging and a few other things have taken a back seat to several things this Spring.  I am prepping for a city wide garage sale, selling items on various venues and going through my belongings with a fine tooth comb.  This is way more than "Spring Cleaning"...more like "Lifetime Cleaning".  So, while I will continue to blog and try and stay in touch it will not be as often.  I discovered that there was much time spent blogging, reading others blogs, replying to others blogs and just plain spending too much time in front of the computer.   I want to move back North and live closer to my grandchildren and I had better get going as I am not getting any younger and my energy reserves are depleting much faster each day! LOL!  Also, my workload has doubled again with outside chores and landscaping.
But I have gotten some handwork time in when my legs are too tired to carry me anymore or when I need a break.
I am happy to report that "the blanket" is almost done....block #52 of 55 so next week you might see a finish not counting the lining which I need to order fabric for.  I'm sure you're tired of seeing it so I will not include a picture this week.
Easter is on the way and since I only sent cards for Valentines Day and St. Patrick's Day I thought it was about time to send a surprise box to the grands so...........I'm planning on some of these....
 with my favorite Noro Kureyon wool yarn.  It's all about the colors and I used this yarn to make my leaves last fall and loved how they turned out so when I was thinking of eggs I immediately thought of the Noro.  The colors I have though were chosen for leaves not eggs but the yarn unwinds to reveal more colors than you bargained for so I think it will be good in the end.  I think I will be ordering more of this yarn as it is a definite "go to" yarn for me making small decorative items and more.  I'm not sure I would want to wear it as it is wool and the scratchy kind but I sure love it for everything else!
 I also would like to "whip up" a few of these which are compliments of Revoluzzza's .........aren't they just darling?

 and I have been really wanting to make some of those Japanese knot bags that Kim made.  Such a pretty way to organize all my WIP's and Kim said they fast and easy!

 Japanese Knot Bags - Free Sewing + Knitting Pattern Round Up!
  I have been working later and not watching as much t.v. so there hasn't been as much crochet time but I've made a few more preemie hats.

I did find a washable and dryable soft wool mixture yarn that I want to get for these hats...I think it was Lion Brand and sounds better than the acrylic but being it is for a hospital I knew it would have to be washable and dryable.  I'll have to try it.  Has anyone used it?  I think its called Baby Wool.
I'd feel much better using natural fibers on babies or anyone for that matter!
Spring has arrived for sure but yesterday was a whole different ballgame.....the reason the daffodils below look "blurry"
is because it was snowing like crazy!  Here's a better shot of the snow coming down.
  It snowed all morning but none of it stuck as the temperature was 36.....obviously up in the sky where it was coming from was 32 or lower. LOL!  Today is supposed to be in the 60's...crazy Spring!
There are some new neighbors that have arrived but I don't know their names yet.........not sure if they're staying for the summer or just passing through.
I couldn't get this red bird to turn around but it was not a cardinal female or male...that much I know.
I have not seen a robin yet.  I think they just did a "fly by" from the deep South and went straight North as people up North are seeing them back . I usually have them in the summer but none so far.
I hope you are enjoying your Spring!
Happy Trails!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Monday - Books

 This is a busy Spring here and if you aren't busy yet you will be!  The songbirds are back, the sun is shining and all is right with my world!  And my daughter is on Spring Break this week so there will be more "phone time" than usual which is a good thing as we tend to motivate each other.  So, if Spring hasn't arrived yet in a neighborhood near you...just be is coming!
Meanwhile, the reading continues......not as many as last week though.  I only finished one but it was a great one!  I'm going to be making a list of my TOP 10 Books of 2015 and I'll put it on my blog sidebar and this one will definitely be going on it!  I will probably do one for last year too since I kept track of my 2015 reads.
Ms.  Trigiani did not disappoint with this one.  She's such a flawless writer and storyteller that I would probably love anything she writes but I do have my favorites and this is one of them.
I think she wrote a lot of it from family history as she divulges some correlations in the epilogue and what a great family history to have.  I related to much of it and that generation which would have been my parents generation and their parents.  The hard work ethic, the feeling of responsibility to your family and showing love through caring for them.
"This heartfelt story of the limits and power of love chronicles the remarkable lives of the Castellucas, an Italian American family over the course of three generations."  I think you will enjoy it very much.
This is a book I bought years ago and it is a non-fiction about nature but anytime people praise a book as highly as this by "those in the know" I find it disappointing.  So far it seems to me her writing sounds like she's smoking something!  Some of it makes sense and then some sounds like she's in a dream state.  I've only just begun reading it so maybe it will become more understandable as I get further but right now it's a struggle.  Definitely not a "relaxing read" more like one of those required in school. I read Shakespeare and all the Greek tragedies etc. and in my mind if I have to sit and figure out what the writer is trying to tell me then the writer is at fault....not me! LOL!  I'm a realist and I don't deal well with "skipping around the bush" or symbolism...spit it out!
I just chose my next fiction book this morning and this is it......
I got this at a library book sale but I can't remember when.  I buy many books based on the cover and the blurb on the back.  It looks to be one of those book club books which are usually pretty good.
 "A funny and poignant novel about having your heart in the right place even when everything else isn't."
"Newly divorced Dana Stellgarten has always been unfailingly nice --- even to telemarketers---but now her temper is wearing thin.  Money is tight, her kids are reeling from their Dad's departure, and her Goth teenage niece has just landed on her doorstep.  As she enters the slipstream of post-divorce romance and befriended by the town queen bee, Dana finds that the tension between being true to yourself and being liked doesn't end in middle school....and that sometimes it takes a real friend to help you embrace adulthood in all its flawed complexity."
I'm still listening to the audio of Agatha Christie short stories thus I haven't started The Secret Garden audio.  That's it for this week!  What are YOU reading?
Happy Trails!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!!

Do you have plans for today?  This is one of my favorite days of the year and I made my corned beef and cabbage yesterday..........

 I prepped all my vegetables so they would be ready to put in with the corned beef once it had simmered for several hours.
The cabbage goes in last as it doesn't take long to cook.  I usually cook cabbage, potatoes, carrots, turnips and rutabaga but I couldn't find rutabaga this year but I love it.

I got an Irish care package in the mail too from my daughter and her family........2 packages of my favorite Girl Scout cookies, some Kiss My Face lip balm in Peach and these little canisters that are magnetic on the bottom and will stick on the side of my frig or anything metal.  I think I'm going to put spices in them.   I had one already so now I have 5!
 Plus, this beautiful book............published out of Anamosa, Iowa in the style of the old fashioned almanacs but filled with current articles many relating to the history of the region and filled with original artwork.  I know I will enjoy this book.
and last but not least an original piece of art..........which is now proudly displayed on my refrigerator!
I hope you celebrate this fun day in some small way.  I'm having my great dinner and I'm watching QVC all day as they have all things Irish with history, song and dance and a gay Irish atmosphere plus Waterford Crystal, artwork, hand carved walking sticks, beautiful sweaters and wovens, Connemara marble and more!  I usually get something for myself each year in honor of my Irish heritage.  Have a wonderfully happy St. Patrick' Day!  Happy Trails!