Saturday, February 6, 2016

The Lazy Days Of Winter

   Boy, I have been really babying myself with this cold.  I haven't been further out the door than to hook up Fanny since Tuesday...and I've gone thru a box of tissues and 2 rolls of tp blowing my nose!  Now Jeff has it and last night the house practically vibrated with our coughing and hacking all thru the night!  He ran the vaporizer next to his bed and that helped some.  I think it helped both of us adding moisture to the's a small house, remember...but he just gave me a dirty look when I said that.  Of course, he's not staying home taking care of himself but out running his errands.  I have to admit I never stayed home to nurse a cold before.  It's kind of nice just to be lazy, laying in bed, reading, drinking hot tea or cappuccino, napping in the middle of the day, watching what TV I can get over the airwaves in my room, using my netbook for the internet (the type is so-o-o small!).  I keep saying 'maybe tomorrow I'll go __', but when tomorrow gets here I don't go anywhere! But all this idleness has an limit. I have to have my monthly INR (finger prick) on Monday so I have to go out then. All good things must come to an end, huh?  Besides, I've got to get back to knitting.  It's kind of hard knitting while you're blowing your nose all the time!
   I wanted to share this, one of the photos my cousin, Mary Carol, recently scanned and posted of my mom, my aunt Fran and my cousin Skipper taken in 1945.  Skipper, John Vereuck, died last week in California. His family moved west when he was about 6 or 7 yrs old (I think).  I know his mom and younger brother and sister visited regularly after that until the early 1970's but I don't remember Skipper or their dad once they moved.  Since he was about 6 years older than me, I don't expect he hung around much with us 'little kids' when they did visit.  My mom, my aunt and Skipper's mom, Ro, were really BFF's besides being aunts and niece because they were close in age. (Skipper's grandmother was their older sister, about 20 years older than my mom and my aunt, Fran, was a year or 2 younger than Mom.)  Another

sister, Antoinette, owned the camera and loved taking photos of everyone and everything!  There are enough photos of me as an infant/toddler to fill up 2 albums...oh, yes, they do fill up 2 albums and that's why I never liked having my photo taken as an adult!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Ground Hog's Day

   I don't know how that groundhog can say we're going to have an early spring when we've never had a proper winter yet!  All sorts of storms can happen before April breezes in and personally, I'd prefer a little snow to all this rain.  Today's temperature is suppose to be in the mid-50's.  This is February!?!
   I had my annual cardiology checkup yesterday.  The doctor was very pleased that my St Jude Mechanical Valve 'sounds like new' is 7 years old!  In fact, he even agreed to cut the dosage of Metoprolol, a beta blocker, when I asked if it was really necessary.  I've never had high blood pressure...I take after the Tericos with low bp and the faulty heart valve...and I had asked if the beta blocker was contributing to my constant cold hands and feet...with the Warfarin.  He agreed that it was and while I can't stop taking it completely, he could cut the dose.  Of course, I see my regular MD in about a month and if my bp or heart rate has changed, the dosage will be increased again. There is nothing anyone can do about the Warfarin.  I'm stuck taking it for the rest of my life.  Oh, the cardiologist also said if the dog who likes to put her head on my chest (to check my valve clicking?) starts acting differently, get back to a doctor fast!
   Jeff's socks got finished with the legs ending up at 14".  I think I could have gone another 1/2" but I wasn't sure I'd have enough yarn and besides, I was tired of those socks!  It was time to start something for the shop.  I found an adult sweater pattern that I liked so I adapted aspects of it to my raglan-from-the-neck-down toddler sweater.  I've still got to
The collar is too tight.
finish the collar and sew on buttons but that shouldn't take too long.  I also found an adult Flapper style cloche that I adapted into a toddler hat.  That used up the
Little Flapper

skein of Red Heart acrylic worsted I had in  honeydew.  I think I'll get some Red Heart acrylic worsted in lemon and try another sweater.  Or navy and pink.
   Another of my cousins
died this week but I didn't
know him very well.  Skipper, John Vereuck, lived most of his life in California moving there with his parents and brother and sister as a child.  My mother had several photos of him from when they lived in Herkimer...she was BFF with his mother as well as her aunt.  I had 1 story that I shared:  I was the only granddaughter at the time and 3 young
grandsons went 'hunting' after my 1st birthday, capturing my giant stuffed rabbit and pulling it's ears out.    Skipper was the oldest 'hunter' according to the story. I found the photo and sent it to his daughter.  The rabbit was as tall as I was!!  (Jeff says it was an act of mercy...the rabbit was ugly!) 
   I've got a good head cold (is there a bad one?) and don't feel like doing much of anything.  I told Jeff that when I was working this would have been nothing and I'd just go to work.  Now that I don't have to go anywhere, I don't want to, so I don't. Yesterday he asked me if I wanted to go to the mall and I said no, I wanted to stay home. He went alone and I slept for 3 hours.  Today he's running errands in the rain and I'm headed back to bed for my nap.  There are positive points to being retired!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Another Day

   We had to go to my cousin's funeral yesterday so, of course,  Fanny had to stay home.  Bad move.  Jeff thought it would have been too long for her to be left sitting in the car and she would be better off at home stretched out on a bed, asleep.  If only she had been.  After the funeral mass, my cousin, Diane, invited us to her house in Frankfort for lunch. One of her friends was a former 'Cornhill girl' and talk turned to old times as she and our 'Cornhill boy', Jeff, remembered what it was like living in that part of Utica 50 years ago.  After the group had dwindled to just family, I asked if Diane had a photo of her parent's wedding.  I was just 2 or 3 years old when they had gotten married and that was probably the 1st wedding/bride I saw up close but I remembered her dress.  My cousin, Phy, was a petite little woman and she wore a ballerina length dress...the only one I've ever seen!  (It's funny sometimes what makes an impression on you when you're a child.)  So, photos were brought out, and then Dean and Jeff got talking about politics and family court and suddenly this 10am funeral had lasted until 2:30pm.  By the time we got home I was a little apprehensive about what Fanny could have done.  She's house trained and I didn't expect any surprises in that area but she tends to collect 'mementos' of Jeff and me while we're out and you can never tell what you'll find in that pile!
   We walked into a totally quiet sign of a dog.  Her water dish which holds 1 qt of  water and was full when we left, was empty.  I walked from room to room but there was no collection in the TV room or parlor, or on my bed.  Suddenly from Jeff's room burst Fanny so excited to see us!  She had to be greeted and patted by both of us before going 
out for a quick pee and then back in to make sure we were really home.  On Jeff's bed there was her collection:  one of my blue Croc's (real ones! not Walmart knockoffs but w/o any chew marks), a chewed on...but just on the end...roll of black electrical tape, an empty roll of TP, and an empty plastic bread bag...that had held about 6 slices of rye bread when we had gone out that morning. (No wonder the water dish was empty!)  And the pillows and blankets of Jeff's bed scrunched up where a dog had napped. Fanny kept her eyes on us for the rest of the day.  And last night while she and I were watching Little Couple on TLC, a mouse ran across the kitchen and Fanny who was laying at my feet turned and looked up at me as if to say 'see what you leave me to cope with'.  I promised to put D-con on the top of today's shopping list so I better get going and do that.
p.s.  Jeff's socks are almost finished...I'm trying to use all the yarn and make the legs as long as I can  

so I haven't cut the yarn and I am working from
both ends of the skein.  He likes long legs on his socks and I'm hoping I can get these socks to be at least 12"...if not longer. Remember, this is using just 1 skein of yarn of at least 465 yds.

p.p.s.  Oh, the folks at the bakery laughed like crazy when we told them today about the empty bread bag...and Jeff says bread crumbs...that we found in his bed when we got home from the funeral.

Winter Vacation Goes On

   The nor'easter did what the weather forecaster said it would do, stay south of us.  We had a gray, overcast morning that brighten into a beautiful blue sky afternoon.  It was cold with a strong wind but NO SNOW!   This afternoon Jeff and I went looking for a gun shop he had found on line in Ilion but all we found was an empty building and house.  Guess they went out-of-business.  Oh, well.  We stopped at the new hardware store in Ilion on the way home and Jeff wandered around starry eyed.  One of the sales girls asked if he needed help and I told her no, Jeff in a hardware store is like one of us in the mall.  She laughed.  I got some gourmet dog biscuits for Fanny before we left.  She's beginning to recognize the parking lot of that store.
   Last week I learned that my cousin Peter Molinaro's mother-in-law had passed away.  They live in Loudonville so I sent a card.  Thursday I learned that my cousin, Phyl, the last 1st cousin on my father's side, had died.  She most of my 1st cousins except Peter and Ed...about 20 years older than me.  She had Alzheimer's and had been at Folt's Home for quite awhile.  My mom always missed not being able to visit with Phyllie anymore.  I guess they can visit now.  Her funeral is Tuesday at St Francis in Herkimer.  I won't try to make Jeff go with me...he doesn't do funerals...but maybe he'll drive me down.
     I got my yarn order from LittleKnits on Thursday and let Jeff pick out which skein he liked.  He choise the Opal Classics Luxurious, a washable wool blend of blues with a streak of white (leaving the green Opal Classics Exciting for me).  Before we went out today I started the socks for him.  And I worked on them again last night, so by the time I went to bed I had half the foot done! (Remember a foot for a sock for Jeff is really a foot/12".)
Half of a sock foot!
The yarn is working up so...luxurious!  I love it!  And I hope I get them finished in the next week because I have got to start knitting more than just baby socks for my stock bag for the shop!
  P.S. 1/24/16:  Well, this afternoon I finished the foot and turned the heel on that 1st sock of this latest pair of socks for Jeff  while Denver and New England kept things interesting on the football field, and Jeff put together a 16-bean soup for tomorrow and a great stir-fry for supper tonight.  (I think that man really wants another pair of socks!!)  I don't know if I can do the entire leg tonight but I'll try.  The 2nd game, Carolina v Arizona, just started so I better get the table cleared off...the dishes can sit in the sink...and get back to his sock. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Ring Ring

    We got new phones today!  Jeff and I have been talking about replacing our phones long before he moved in last August.  The cordless handheld units don't bounce very well and the 4 unit set I had was dying one unit at a time.  We had started looking at units at Walmart and Radio Shack but they were all 2 or 4 unit sets and we wanted a 3 unit set. (Why would 2 people in a 6 room house need more than 3 units???)  Last week I looked online at both Walmart and Radio Shack's sites and wasn't impressed.  Then  I looked at Best Buy's site and was pleasantly surprised.  They had a VTech 3 unit set on sale for $35.99 and there was no shipping charge!  We talked it over and I ordered the set on Wednesday and started following it's travel path online.  Today we found the box sitting on our door step!  Jeff quickly put the batteries in the units and now the new answering machine with its cordless handheld unit is in the TV room and there is a cordless handheld unit in each of our rooms.  Oh, no more jumping up in the middle of the night to run thru the dark house to answer the phone!! (We probably won't get anymore middle of the night 'wrong numbers' now.)
   Before the shop closed for the season in December the powers that be decided it was time to update our brochure.  New photos were taken and now we're working on the copy.  This morning we've been emailing revisions back and forth trying to come up with a working version.  Hopefully, we did it and our new and improved brochure will be ready for the spring reopening.
   It was also suggested that we keep posting photos of our 'growing stock' to the shop's Facebook page to remind people of what the shop carries.  Well, I can't post anything photo on this PC so I tried to use Jeff's but it didn't work as well as I wanted.  I ended up posting it to Facebook but not to the shop's Facebook page.  I think I'll have to go to the library this week and ask for some help. Oh, well.
   Today the wind is blowing and it's very cold but at least it stopped snowing. It looks like winter now...but that nor'easter isn't suppose to get close to us! 

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Thinking Small

   Last night I started knitting for the shop by casting on for a pair of baby socks.  I have to admit that I started to knit for the shop early only because I ran out of sock yarn for Jeff and me. (My washable wool socks are almost finished and I'm waiting for a shipment from LittleKnits which I think is shipped from the Pacific Northwest and will take awhile to get here.)  I know I only sold 6 pairs of baby sock last season but that was because I never took the time to make more.  Baby socks don't take very long...or very much make but they are very hard on the index finger of my left hand.  It ends up looking...and a pin cushion!  (A US 0 needle will do that.)  So with my finger wrapped in a Tough Strip flexible Band-Aid I cast on with some of the blue/green wool blend yarn left over from my socks.  By the end of the evening, the 1st sock was finished...and cute!  This morning I finished the 2nd sock and started another baby sock with a cotton and acrylic blend in a red-pink-orange ombre. 
Baby Socks
Washable wool on the left
Cotton/acrylic blend on the right

(Why I have 2 122yd skeins of that I don't know.  Maybe I was going to make myself a pair of socks out of it, too.)  I took the time to go through the sock yarn box and found enough white, yellow and jade in cotton blends to make baby socks out of each.  I think the white and yellow will have a little lace trim...wonder if there's any pink in there?  There was enough yarn in wool, cotton and you-name-it blends left over from other socks to make more, too, but it all depends on how long it takes my LittleKnits order to get here.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Wool Sock Weather

   Everyone will agree that's it's been wool sock weather lately so I think I got Jeff's Christmas present finished on time...even if it was today.  Actually the socks would have been finished in time for Christmas if the yarn had had enough yardage in each skein.  Patons Kroy Socks FX while weighing
Jeff's socks...finished at last!
50 grams, has only 166 yds in each skein...and that's not enough for a sock for Jeff.  I had to order another skein and watch online as it made it's way from Kentucky to Indiana to New Jersey to Syracuse before arriving in our mailbox yesterday. (Not exactly the most direct route.  And it was USPS!)   I started yesterday afternoon and got the necessary 4 1/2" added to the leg of the 1st sock before bed.  And today I finished the 2nd sock.  I even toyed with the idea of ripping it out and starting over because the stripes didn't quite match but when I mentioned it to Jeff, he said not to.  He wasn't going to be wearing the socks so people could see the stripes didn't exactly match. (Actually he said, don't because he wouldn't be wearing them on his ears where anyone could see them.) I'm glad coz I really didn't want to.  Instead I cast on for socks for me with a washable wool blend from DarnGood Yarn.
My sock OTN
  I'd like to get them finished before the sock yarn I ordered from LittleKnits gets here sometime next week.  One of my knit sibs from the chat group KnitTalk on Yahoo pointed out that there was a great sale on sock yarn going on right now.  I checked it out and sent in an order.  I hope I'll be able to knit another pair of socks for both Jeff and me before my winter vacation is over and I have to start knitting for the shop.