Saturday, February 27, 2010

Feb. 27: Saturday and Saving Middle Earth

For some reason, I decided it would be fun to watch all three of the "Lord of the Rings" movies. . . I don't think I actually sat down and watched any of them start to finish, so last night (after a terrific evening of show choir at the high school: Younger's group's 80's medley was great, and MDI's and Ellsworth's senior high productions, while very different, were both terrific.) Younger and I came home, cobbled together some dinner, and sat down to watch the first half of "The Fellowship of the Ring."

After a great night's sleep (the night before I woke up a lot from the wind and rain!), some hanging around the house, and then a delicious breakfast out at the Riverside, Younger and I finished #2, and I did two loads of laundry, set it to dry on the rack, went for a run, took Z for a walk with Elder, and showered, whereupon we settled in to start "The Two Towers," which we just finished after a break to make cornbread and salad, admire Elder's picture for art, and take said food to a potluck supper at church. Amidst all that hacking, slashing, amazing scenery, and admiration of Llegolas (OB never looked better. Never.), I did the gorgeous eye-of-partridge heel flap for my orange/brown socks, got through the first 1/2 of the foot of my charybdis sock #2, and wound 8 balls of Peace Fleece's Ancient Fern for the sweater I'm planning.

NOT SO BAD! Still I am feeling like today flew by and might skip church (first time in a long, long time!) just to have some more time to be. Will wait and see how that feels.

Meantime, weather is still sun/rain/cold/warm/snow/rain/wind/sun, but the least of all, sun. We were lucky with our vacation!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Feb. 25: Wet, Wild, and Windy!

February has returned with a vengeance--though it's really more February mixed with late March as our striking dry weather has been replaced by lots and lots of rain, with splatterings of huge wet snow flakes mixed in. We are so lucky we had such nice weather last week: while I'd love to take today to slop around the house in my jams, knitting and reading and maybe taking a nap, a whole week of this gloom, chill and damp would drive us all nuts.

One nice thing is the lack of sun will preserve this:

It is the sturdiest and possibly most prolific amaryllis I've had! It's short, too, which makes it more durable. There are two more stalks coming up! I am, once again, delighted by my Ellsworth Feed and Seed purchase! Marie's apple blossom one is stunning as well, brightening up the main office at school. Lovely things!

I am eyeing this weekend and hoping to watch some "Lord of the Rings" movies with Elder and Younger and also my netflix. I need to get both socks, Ellyn's and the brown ones, over hurdles (heel and I forget what else), and I could start my peace fleece pullover if Marie brings in the swift. . . . so some movies would provide a great backdrop. Saturday night we're out at church for a potluck and the LaRomana group's picture show, which should be fun. Sounds like a nice mix of in and out--after a week of too much out, kicking off a month of "too much out!" But such is March. Ah well.

I'll close with a shot of my vacation accomplishment, my cleaned and organized spice cupboard. . . from this:

to this:

Maybe this is the reason I've been baking so much lately! Martha, eat your heart out!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Feb. 20: Back from Brunswick

Let's see: I knitted on Ellyn's sock toe en route down (2.5 hours). Realized I'd cast on with the wrong sized needles, though I had carefully recorded the correct size. . .just didn't bother to check. Still, took everything out, redid the Knitty '06 magic toe up cast on without the pictures (!!) and was back up to . . . well, the toe, by the time we got to BH's dad's place.

Knitted on plain brown sock (orange top, heel, and toe; yarn packaged together and then given randomly to me!)while visiting with the family. . . about 2 hours. 2"?

While light lasted, started pattern on Ellyn's second sock. Redeemed self by getting pattern going without trouble. Whew. Did about 1" before light failed.

Switched to brown sock and knitted in the dark (yes, boasting) for 2 hours or so. Am about 1" away from heel, so did about 5" total. Yesssssssssssssssss!

Hands are tired. NOT knitting when I read!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Feb. 18: Thursday, and What Have I Done?

Here's the old "gotta get stuff DONE" quandary. . . cleaned the spice cupboard (pics to follow) and have done some good reading and knitting, but today I hope to get down to some good work on the ol' to-do list. Doesn't help that my friend Lori is WHIPPING through her to-dos in preparation for a move!

So, here are my hopes:
--cut the pieces for my bench runner--DONE!
--print out family pic for my errrrr holiday ? card/letter for the year (that would be 2009!)--DONE! Now I have to REwrite the "copy"
--DO SOME TIDYING UP! My bureau and my study are beginning to make me itch!TODAY!
--get a card to the library for the other trustees to sign. . . DID IT! Also got both boys new, much needed sneakers, on sale and with a coupon. . .
--go out to dinner with BH to a restaurant *he* wants to go to that *I* am not so thrilled about. . . Put on a happy face! IT WAS GOOD AND NICE. YAY!
--good swim workout at 1:30 to practice back and breaststroke. . . Elder was very patient on Tuesday! WHEW! I WAS BEAT--GOOD WORKOUT INDEED!

That. Should. Do. It.

Then I'd feel a little more accomplished! Well: except that I managed to start feeling MORE hunted and LESS accomplished. . . stupid brain. And BH's sil has now planned a b'day gathering for BH's brother. . .ON SATURDAY. Two hours away. When the whole family was down there LAST WEEK. I can't decide if I should suck it up and go, thus losing more time, or not. . . BH says not to go if I don't want to, but it's not that easy. My bigger self wars with my smaller self. I have a hunch I'm going. ==sigh==

ETA: Though I managed to get completely distracted and forget to post this entirely! D'OH!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Feb. 16: Good Times!

It was wonderful to be in Portland with Julie and Lori; it's wonderful to be home with a list of enticing "to do's" before me. We're even due to have SNOW tonight into tomorrow. Such goodness!

Today the sunshine is streaming in the window and my amaryllis is making a good attempt at blooming (thanks for waiting till I got back!). I am thinking I might attack the spice cupboard and start work on the runner for my new bench--if I at least get the fabric I can skip driving tomorrow if the roads are bad! I do have Library Trustees tonight, and then tomorrow is Ash Wednesday (how the HECK did that happen?), but still. Glorious vacation!

My sinuses are giving me a run (ha! Inadvertent pun, and actually it's an oxymoron) for my money: my ear started crackling on Friday and I had a go round (and round and round) of bad vertigo Sunday night, and today my teeth feel funny, so I will take some drying medicine and hope I can avoid a trip to the dr. Because I. Am. Just. Too. Busy!

Had a very slick bus ride up from Portland: I finished Ellyn's first sock, started the second orange/brown sock, and read a ton of my bargain book: The Circle, by Peter Lovesey. I like his Peter Diamond series, and this is one. . . great characters, and a twisty ending. Finished it last night. Yessssssssss!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Feb. 13: Vacation!

At last! I will leave for Portland with Lori at 11; Elder has already left for States at Orono and Younger and BH leave for family b'day in Brunswick in about an hour. I have swept the floor and have a load of towels in already. Towels? Why towels, you ask? Because Elder's swim team did their States prep at our house yesterday (3 pm on) and of the ten kids we had, three shaved their heads completely, two did total body shaves, and three got substantial hair cuts. So there was a LOT of showering. And hair disposal. Then I fed fourteen people dinner of spaghetti, sauce, bread, salad, and BH, Younger, two of Younger's friends and I made it to a 6 pm showing of "The Lightning Thief," which we'd all read, downtown. WHEW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was a lot of fun from start to finish (many pics on Facebook, of course) but at about 6:45 in the movie (which I enjoyed, tho it left a lot of stuff out!), I nearly fell asleep.

Am so looking forward to three days in Portland! Lori and Julie have made the reservations for dinner, so I get to just show up, and we're all prepared to drift happily around the city and shore for a few days. I am riding down with L and taking the bus back up, so I can knit or sleep or whatever. Yesssss.

This vacation I have several putzy goals:
--clean the spice cupboard. Enough with waiting for the snow days already.
--clean the top of my bureau.
--start a runner for the top of the bench in the living room. I think I'll pattern it on the Christmas one we had.
--send out our (ahem) Christmas picture to some stalwarts who sent Christmas cards.
--look at fixing the fraying curtains in the bedroom.
--finish a few WIPs if possible: my brown and orange socks and Ellyn's first sock at least.
--go out to dinner with BH!


Monday, February 8, 2010

February 8: More Things I Like

1. The feeling that comes over a class room when everyone is working. Suddenly, we're all headed in the same direction, and it gets. . . peaceful, is the best word I can think of. Love that.

2. Taking off tights and putting on flannel pajama pants.

3. Hot tea. Hot black tea. Ahhhh.

4. Hyacinths coming up to bloom in the house. =Sigh=. My carefully planted ones from this fall are NOT showing, even after six weeks of love and sunshine. Next step: dumping them out to find them 1. uninterested, or 2. mouldy. =Sigh again.=

(This pic is from last year. Granted, it was much snowier last winter, but I'm still misty. I give myself permission to go buy another hyacinth from the grocery store for this year!)

5. Finding a book that sucks me in. It's been a bit! I need one!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Watch This Movie!

"Arranged"--tells the story of a friendship between two women, one Orthodox and one Muslim, living in NYC, who meet each other as their families are amping up their efforts to marry them off. Lovely to watch and very thought-provoking. I'd recommend it highly! Got it through Netflix, and started BH's new, larger, and green chullo hat while watching it.

Now, off for a run in the cccccold. It's hard being tough.

Actually, it's hard only being disciplined enough to go for the run rather than being able to maintain my weight some other way like eating less!

But the sun is out, so the vitamin D will be good too. Off with me!

Feb. 6 ??!!: Whipping through winter!

Not much new snow lately, despite the "snowmaggedon" promised to our nation's capitol. It's been cold enough so I'd like a little more coverage for some of my plants, but since February break in only one week away and Lori, Julie and I are planning a rendezvous in Portland, I will wait till the end of February for any more spectacular snow falls. Please!

Today Elder and BH are in Deer Isle meeting Elder's art mentor and seeing his forge; I plan to get off my duff in a moment, clean up, and head down town to check out the library book sale (I am restlessly between books right now. . . grrrr.) and the studio cleanout sale at the Maine Grind, just for a variation. I also realized at our fun and rowdy knitting group meeting yesterday, that I have four projects "on the needles" and I have just ordered yarn (will go out on Monday) for a sweater, so I want to get cracking on BH's second (bigger) Christmas hat. Since it is 1. very cold and 2. I have a Netflix that's been waiting to be watched for three weeks, it seems 3. like a knitting and watching afternoon might be inevitable. The futon in my study is unfolded, in fact, and might be just the spot!

So this is a quick appearance to say nothing much. I will bemoan the fact that my "Seven Days of Specialness" swap partner seems to have vanished, so my carefully selected and wrapped gifts are sitting in my car, frozen and neglected, and my seven special days are also in limbo. So far, my experience with swaps has been middling to poor. Hmm. Note to self? Or maybe just self pity!

However, to uplift all of our spirits, I will close with a pic of Younger, showcasing his Christmas present to me: comfy, bright pj pants made by himself! They are just what I love and needed. . . We are both delighted!