Sunday, December 30, 2007

Christmas in Williamston, North Carolina

This Christmas was very special because I got to spend time with my daughter Andrea and the two sweetest grandkids, Caleb and Taite.

Cliff and I traveled very early on Christmas day to Louisburg, NC to take part of the Christmas Breakfast at the other grandparent's house. We were treated to a delicious breakfast. Travis read the Christmas story from the book of Matthew and the children waited with excitement in their eyes to open the gifts.

Cliff left the day after Christmas but I got to stay to play and get my share of hugs and kisses - this is a wonderful gift and blessing in itself. Caleb did pick up a bug on Christmas day and I witnessed a lot of washing of sheets, floors, carpets, etc... Oh Caleb also fell back from one of the riding toys and had to be taken to Emergency. Luckily the wound required no stitches and healed quite fast. What a week!! Sure to be remembered.

Riding the train back from Rocky Mount was a new experience for me. I got a lot of knitting done. It was actually very relaxing and the trip took around 5 hours.

My daughter's christmas tree.
Taite loved the Clementines.
Father and Daughter sharing a sweet moment.
Taite doing what one year olds do...He's too cute.
Caleb love opening presents--sounds so sweet.

Riding the train was nice - I was on the Business Class so I was very comfortable and even got complimentary coffee and water. The Cafe car was right behind me and I ate supper there.Knitting on board Amtrak Train

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Secret Santa - Tricky Santa

Joined my coworkers from the Mint Hill Library to reveal the Secret Santa identity. We all had drawn names and gave small gifts to a co-worker after Thanksgiving.

At the party all in attendance brought an exchange gift and we played Tricky Santa. Some people call the game Dirty Santa. We all took a number. Each person takes turns picking a gift from under the tree. The tricky part about the game begins when after opening a gift a person has the choice to keep the gift or to steal another gift that has already been opened.

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My secret Santa was very generous and blessed me with Starbucks Holiday Blend Coffee, snowman magnet, and a Hallmark Snowman ornament. I actually have been matched to the same person the past two years. Also received other wonderful gifts like the Hip Knits book from Donna, gift cards to Caribou and Starbucks Coffee, a unique Candy Cane Ornament, a Pampered Chef mini prep bowl filled with delicious mini cookies, mittens, a snowman door knob holder, etc...etc...

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My friend Connie is a blessing. She and I enjoy very much getting together to knit. She surprised me last week and showed up with some Dunkin Donuts Gingerbread Latte and a beautiful gift, the cutest sheep earrings. It had been a very cold day at the library and I took the coffee with me while I did some shelving. Drinks with lids are allowed.

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Chris loved choosing this gift from under the tree but she did not keep it for long. Someone stole it. In the end this gift was not really for the Tricky Santa game. It belonged to another co-worker who received this gift from her Secret Santa. No wonder everyone loved this gift it was a Willow Tree ornament figurine. We all enjoyed our time together.

Monday, December 03, 2007

'Tis the Season

I've been busy knitting trying to finish all my gifts. I managed to get some decorating done just inside the house. I love the magical season of Christmas but it sure takes time to get it all ready.

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This cute Santa Ornament is for one of my co-workers. Every year we all give each other a little something...a merry christmas little gift. I found some neat ornaments during a visit to my daughter's house while she was still living in Ohio. The ornaments came from The Parsley Pot located on 697 County Road 1302 Rd-2 Ashland, Ohio. I will have to see if they have an online store.

More ornaments which will make my co-workers smile...I'm sure.

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My very skinny tree.

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The Mini trees on the mantle also came from the Parsley Pot. I'm using some mini ornaments that belong to my daughter Andrea. I'm taking care of them for you.

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Joy to the World - The Lord has come - Let all the earth rejoice.

Lots of Books Piling Up.....after Thanksgiving


The day after Thanksgiving our Horizon Network went down. As a result we could not check in any books. Saturday came along and still no computers. When I came back on Monday we had three tables set up to hold books. It doesn't take long for the work to get backed up when this happens. We call it the mess.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thanksgiving 2007

We spent Thanksgiving at Joann's and Joe's. She told me she left the turkey cooking all night around 250 degrees. Now I'm wondering if it's safe to cook turkey at a low temp. Anyway it was all very good. I contributed a delicious sweet potato souffle which was featured in Good Morning America this week. We ate very early which was nice; after lunch we watched the Charlotte Thanksgiving Parade. Since I ate more than I normally eat I went for an energizing walk in the neighborhood and took this picture. The colors are so beautiful and I know this won't last.

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This next picture is not very good because the lamp is on the way. I don't think there's any way to crop it.

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Well so long for now; I still have some energy left so I'm going to make Chex Mix. I finished Kevin's scarf and this week I'll be mailing him a package.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Kevin's first visit to Venice


Venice 014
Originally uploaded by usafmain
Kevin sent us some neat pictures from Venice. Looks like he is enjoying touring the towns near Aviano. Venice is about one hour away. What a neat place to visit. I do hope we get to go soon sometime in the year 2008. The weather in Italy is about the same as our weather.

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Knitting Nuts First Meeting

Yarn, Coffee, Cute Baby, Great Fellowship.....


What can be more fun than meeting with ladies who love to knit and enjoy delicious coffee? I recommend the Cafe au Lait (hot coffee with steamed milk) at Dilworth Coffee House. The medium size was only $2.50.

I believe all the ladies have met through Ravelry (the knitting social network site). I have not been contacted yet so I'm on the waiting list. My
daughter said I could use her password to get in and explore. Ha..ha...Thank you Andrea. By the way my daughter is doing quite well with her knitting. She left my house this past Thursday morning with a large zip lock bag of yarn I gave her. She will be working on simple knit & purl combinations to create dishcloths.

Michelle's baby Samantha is adorable. She is our baby model so we can try our knitted baby things. I knitted the white cap with the chicks she is wearing. We all loved having her around. The knitted pirate is Barnacle Bill. He is amazing; even more amazing is the fact that he was knitted by someone who has not been knitting long. I love him.
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Caleb & Taite Visit Nana

Loved having Caleb and Taite around eventhough our time together was short. I spent a few hours with them this past Monday while Andrea joined her husband Travis at the Southern Baptist Convention which took place in Greensboro. I'm glad the children do remember me when they come to visit. This makes babysitting much easier. The hardest part I would say was not being able to leave both boys alone in the same room...Caleb like every 3 yr old who has a small baby brother can at times be a bully so I had to be careful to keep an eye at all time. Caleb loves to listen to me read stories. The picture also shows Taite playing with the night light.

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Taite worked on walking - he's almost there. I loved getting so many sweet hugs from him. He looked so proud of what he's been able to do now. By Thanksgiving he might be walking on his own. For now he goes from cabinet to cabinet to chair, etc..Very smart baby.
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The morning before they left we took this picture on our front porch.Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket


Saturday, November 10, 2007

Another Knitting Group Meeting

The ladies who came to this knitting meeting met through the popular social network site called Ravelry I have not become a member of this site since there is a waiting list. According to Rose, Connie, Michelle and Shandeh there is nothing like it. They love it and Connie especially has been encouraging me to get on the waiting list. Maybe I will check it out. Connie is a super teacher. I came out of this meeting learning how to do the dread locks fringe. I will see how it looks on the modular knitted scarf I completed. It was very neat watching Connie do the Tunisian crochet and she also demonstrated how to use a small wooden loom to make an icord. Correct me if I'm wrong, Connie - you did call it a loom. I've always been intrigued by the long crochet hook.
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Getting Ready for Caleb's and Taite's Visit




I'm looking forward to Caleb's and Taite's visit. Our house has been very quiet since Kevin left for Aviano. Last time I spoke to Caleb on the phone it was neat. I understood everything he said. I rearranged a few things upstairs and I do hope Caleb likes his room. He will be sleeping in what used to be Kevin's room.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Working on the Modular Knitting Scarf




I think I finally got the hang of modular knitting at least working with the equilateral triangles. It's been fun learning. I will be teaching this technique at the Mint Hill Library on Tuesday November 13 at 1 p.m. I made a short video working on the scarf.

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Saturday, November 03, 2007

Baby Bootees



Recently I purchased the book Adorable Knits for Tots by Zoe Mellor. I got it with a 50% off coupon from Michaels. Someone at work requested a pair of bootees so I made the ones featured in the book. I used a size two kneedles with Baby Soft a Lion Brand Yarn which is sportweight yarn.

Bootees in progress.

My First Charlotte Purl Knitting Group Meeting

Me and Connie

Today I went with my friend Connie to my first meeting of the Charlotte Purls Knitting group. They meet at a Caribou Coffee in the University Area every other Saturday. It was really neat and I'm so glad Connie brought me along. Everyone made me feel very welcomed and I would definitely like to go back. Speaking of Connie...she is the best and a great teacher. She taught me a new knitting pattern which creates a bobble/blackberry like stitch. Connie I checked the pattern I had and mine is much more complicated. Mine has a bobble increase and a bobble decrease which goes like this:

bbl inc (bobble increase) p1, yo, pi, yo, p1 all into same stitch
bbl dec (bobble decrease) with yarn in front slip 2 stitches knitwise, K3 tog pass 2 slipped stitches over knit stitch
dec 3 (decrease 3) p2tog, p2tog, slip first decrease over second decrease.

These fingerless gloves are very popular. I hope I have time to make a pair to give away as a christmas gift. I love knitting mittens.

Knitsters sharing with one another.

Stacey one of the members of Charlotte Purls. You made me feel very welcomed, Stacey.
I love your knitted belt.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Saying good bye to kevin


Sunday was Kevin's last day at home. He was very much ready to go and start his assignment in Aviano, Italy. He will be there for the next two years. I did not take time off from work so he just relaxed watching movies, playing games, eating out. He especially enjoyed watching Evan Allmighty Saturday night. He watched part of the movie at home and part in the van on our way to church. He also went through his clothes and we took quite a few things to Goodwill. He and I did go out jogging a couple of times and I was surprised I was able to keep up with him. Jogging in Mint Hill Park was harder; we jogged in the trails and walked some too. We will miss you Kevin. Don't forget that you are always in our thoughts and prayers.

I will add more pictures later.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Neat Creation


I have discovered a new site to edit and add special effects to my photographs. It is very easy to use and uploads photos from photobucket or Flickr. The site is free but does have a Premium feature stream which costs $24.95 per year. I'm talking about Picnik; truly a fun site.


This is the original picture which was edited. By the way the plant in the picture is one of the varieties of Sedum which is doing quite well in a pot on our patio. Looks very nice in the fall.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Beautiful but Dry Fall Day


I sure do hope it rains soon. It's getting hard to keep the garden looking good with the lack of rain. Plants can survive when they are being watered but they do so much better with rain. It's the first time since we have lived in Charlotte (1981) that the city of Charlotte has imposed mandatory water restrictions. We are not on city water but I've heard from people say that wells can also run dry. I have to keep an eye on Cliff who waters to keep plants and grass green.


Cliff pulled the Black Eye Susans and lined the flower bed with brick pavers. It looks good. Took some pictures this afternoon in the garden. We have one of those spiders that weaves and this afternoon I came home from work to find an anole lizard caught in her web. Not sure if the spider could eat it. A section of the lizard's tale was already shriveled. I set him free, of course. I tried to take a picture of the spider but she got nervous with my presence and kept moving/bouncing on her web.

Bumble bee on Sedum.
The Hibiscus don't seem to mind the drought.
Roses.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Meez - Aura

This was part of a Learning 2.1 exercise. I created this avatar and tried to make it look somewhat like me. I really don't have blue eyes so I goofed. Will have to go back and edit. It was fun choosing the clothes and accessories. You can create your own "Meez".

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Summer of 2007

This picture was taken in early August. Notice how well established the Black Eye Susans look. The yellow finches love the seeds. They work so hard extracting them.
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The Cockscomb have done quite well. They were started from seed. Their vivid color has been a great addition. I will have to remember to collect seeds. This plant is very drought tolerant.Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

My Anniversary -- 27 Wonderful Years

27 Wonderful years


The picture you are seeing was taken actually more than 27 years ago. Our wedding took place on September 13, 1980 in Panama City, Republic of Panama. This really was our Engagement Picture. Back then I was 24 years old and Cliff was 27. We sure have changed physically, who doesn't? I am blessed to be able to celebrate this special date next to my wonderful, caring, loving and gentle husband. Not a day goes by that he doesn't show me how special I am to him.

I'm looking forward to celebrating many more years next to my sweet wonderful husband, my soulmate.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Matthews Alive Festival


This past Saturday my orginal plan was to visit Renfrow Hardware Store in Matthews to pick seeds to plant this fall. I knew that Matthews Alive was going on but did not think that the hardware store would be closed. Well it was. The Farmer Market was not going on, either...So I decided to browse and visit the craft vendors.
There was at least 5 booths selling hand made bags. Picked up two cute bags which regularly sold for $25.00 at $6.00 each. This company has an online store at: Simply Notes and Totes



A couple of weeks ago I picked up this other bag from from Adrianne who sells her bags at the Mint Hill Farmer Market. Her bags are just beautiful. She told me she had no idea how she could set up an online store. She reads your blog Andrea and is amazed at all the things you do. I did tell her about Etsy and she said she'd look into it.

Take a peek at Adrianne's beautiful bag. The handles are really black not blue as the pictures shows.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Happy Birthday Caleb

Caleb turns 3 today. He's growing up so fast. I wish I could be there to give you a big kiss, Caleb. I know how much you like birthday parties, cakes, blowing the candles, etc...

Nana is sending you this Happy Birthday song Video. Hope you enjoy it.

Your big surprise birthday gift will arrive on September....No, it's not a bed but I'm sure you and Taite will enjoy it.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Check out my Slide Show!

The Face Behind the Blog




My daughter has tagged me and she wants me to participate by posting my picture. I had fun creating my first slide presentation using http://slide.com/
I was not able to include the slide presentation as part of this post. Kept coming with some error message when I tried to publish....so the slide is on a post by itself. I don't know much html and get lost in understanding how it works.
So now I'm supposed to tag someone else whose blog I read so the only person I stay in touch with other than my daughter is Connie. It's your turn Connie if you're up to this.


Here are the rules:

1st step Post a short blog article that includes a photograph (or a series of photos) showing the face behind your blog. If you already show a photo somewhere on your site (such as in your about page), then make your post more interesting and choose a photo that’s not currently online.

2nd step Include links to other people that have displayed a photo, or include their photos in your post, adding a reference.

3rd step Tag as many others as you like to spread the meme.

I'm tagging: Connie


4th step If you link back to to me and post a comment; I'll be sure to include links back to you. Each person tagged should create their own post and repeat the process. You tag as few or as many people as you want. Sorry Connie I'm not sure of this step (Maybe you can explain to me)

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Working Out at the Ladies Express




I've been going to the Ladies Express Workout since June. With my schedule I end up going three times a week. Exercising really does make a difference; the challenge is setting time aside to do it. I have met some very nice ladies including Wendy who took my pictures. Wendy and other ladies are encouraging me to take the zumba class which takes place 2 times a week. I keep saying "Maybe." The ladies who take this class say it's a lot of fun and you can burn lots of calories. So we'll see......




Thursday, August 23, 2007

Semi Healthy Banana Bread



My supply of frozen bananas has been growing. Tonight I made this recipe which I am calling semi-healthy because I added Kretschmer Wheat Germ. I usually add wheat germ to my oatmeal. The label states it is an excellent source of Vitamin E and Folic Acid; two tablespoons contains 50 calories. I like the nutty and crunchy texture it adds to my cereal.

Ingredients:
2-3/4 Cups All Purpose Flour
1/4 Cup Kretschmer Wheat Germ
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1 Cup brown sugar
1/2 Cup white sugar
3 large eggs
1 Cup vegetable oil
3 Mashed bananas

Preheat oven to 350. Combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Set aside. In mixer beat on medium speed the sugars and the oil well; add one egg at a time beating well after each addition. Lower speed in mixer and add flour mixture in small amounts. Beat slightly only as needed to blend. Lastly add mashed bananas. Pour batter into 2 loaf pans. Bake for around 45 minutes.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

20 Some Years Ago


People say: "Time flies". It is so truth and the older I get the faster it seems to go. I'm so thankful for the memories of days gone by that have been preserved through pictures taken. I wish now I had taken more. My daughter Andrea takes pictures of her kids every day, I'm serious. She will have some many pictures to look at when her kids are grown. It'll be wonderful.


I came across some pictures some twenty plus years ago. I remember especially like it was yesterday the one of Kevin leaning against the fence. We took a walk in our old neighborhood, Holly Hills. This picture was taken on a beautiful summer day. Both my kids loved going on walks.


Spoke to Kevin tonight via the computer and he is doing well. The rash which he had a few days ago was nothing serious. I had visions of him experiencing hives. He said it was something caused by bug bites. Thank you Lord for answered prayers. Tomorrows Tech training will be tough and very physically demanding. Some trainees even pass out during the exercise. I think he called the exercise Itt.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Papa Cliff Working on the Dormer Window


Papa said the upstairs bathroon window was in bad shape. Here he is doing some of the repair.


He already took the window out and has sealed the hole with plywood. I told him he should just have waited to put the new window when it arrived. But no, he could not wait. It scares me a little to see him up there. He says he is careful. He came down when it started to get too hot.


Speaking of hot the house has been hot. As we speak the temperature is around 85. The air broke down yesterday and the repair people said that it would be Tuesday before they could come and fix the AC. We have been fortunate to have the AC window unit which we used to run upstairs in Kevin's room. It is keeping our room cool., but it is noisy. I kept waking up all during the night. I'm so glad this did not happen a few days ago when the temp reached 100 and also while you were still living with us.

The Cicadas - Pronounced "SeeKadas"


Hi Caleb here is a picture of the Cicadas - those noisy bugs which look like aliens. Papa took the time to film one while it was coming out of its shell.


He told me that one landed on his back this week when he was coming back from getting the paper. He reached back touched the back of his head and thought "My hair feels funny." He was really touching the Cicadas wing. Sure glad it was not me.


With this heat the wasps have been clinging to our back kitchen door. On the days when we reached a 100 several ( 20 or so) could be seen. I guess this high heat is hard on all., even bugs.