June 30, 2008

A Public Apology to Rabbits Everywhere

Remember this? I blamed a rabbit. I was too quick playing the blame game.
How could it have been something this sweet? If the squirrels and bunnies can get along, than why can't we? It was a stinking vole! How do I know this? Well, computer research points strongly in that direction. RL was looking out the kitchen window yesterday and said one of my hostas was 'moving'. What does that mean? The wind is blowing? It's raining? What exactly does that mean. It was overcast, so I bought into the wind story. No, no, no! He was adamant that it wasn't the wind. So, I went to the window and sure enough, the hosta was moving. Not all of the hostas - just this one. So, I ventured out to the old hosta patch and heard a munching sound while three of the hosta leaves moved in time to the munching. I went and got RL, who reached down and lifted, effortlessly, the hosta. The whole root/bulb system was gone and little teeth marks were everywhere! ARGH! RL went after that area with a shovel like a crazed man. I came in the house. I didn't want to see what he was going to do if he found one. The kids came to the window, shook their heads and returned to their seats. They're used to this kind of behavior around these parts. He never did find the vole - which was good for the vole's sake. Not so good for the remaining hostas.
Oh, but we had more fun than that. I started knitting a sock this weekend on my super pointy, love them more than any other knitting needles in the world, Knit Picks dpns. I lost count of my rows and promptly asked my knitting guru to count my rows. Unfortunately, I stuck one of my super pointy, love them more than any other knitting needles in the world, Knit Picks dpns in the ball of yarn. The yarn started to roll and R reached out to stop it. The needle stabbed her in the palm of her hand. The yarn rolled onto the floor and the needle stuck in her hand. She flung her hand as hard as she could. Somewhere in this living room is a dpn waiting to attack another unsuspecting soul. RL found one in the love seat, under the cushions, which happened to be the same size, but I'm not convinced that R is that good of a flinger. She might be. I have learned not to doubt her abilities in the past. L ran and got ice and we calmed her the best way we could. She has a little bruise there today and is learning just how much you use that part of your hand.
I think this little guy should sit here and keep watch. We need a guardian squirrel.

June 25, 2008

I think we're all a little 'melon chested'

R and I were talking this afternoon about one of the shows she and L like to watch every night on Adult Swim. The show is called "Home Movies" and doesn't seem like it should be in the Adult Swim line up. It's a little too mellow - thank goodness. Anyway, one of the main characters is eight and he is currently in therapy with his Dad and soon to be Step Mom. While discussing this with his Mom, he asks if he is 'melon chested'. His Mom has NO idea what he's talking about until she figures out he means 'maladjusted'. I am sure in my heart that my family is 'melon chested'. Doesn't that sound a wee bit better than maladjusted? I thought so too.
To prove just how 'melon chested' I am, I am sharing a picture of my latest purchase. Sad, isn't it? Well, the old iron gave up the ghost. Starting pining for the fjords. Is singing with the choir invisible. I had to buy a new one. I like ironing as much as I like cleaning bathrooms. As much as a root canal. As much as (insert your worst nightmare here) and you'll get the picture. I would have put it off a little longer, but due to the new dress code at RL's office, I had to get some of his Docker's pleated for work this week. Off to Target the kids and I went to pick out our glorious new addition to the family.
It makes it somewhat easier to buy since it's such a lovely pink color. Who are they trying to fool. It's still an iron.

See, it even has an 'idiot strip' on the side of it so I know when it's cool enough to put away. Where would I be without this? Now I don't have to use nearly as many brain cells while ironing!

Here's a lovelier shot of the color. It seems kind of purply there, doesn't it? It works very, very well, so I don't really have any reason to complain. Well, the only reason I do have to complain is that I would have rather spent the $30+ on yarn. Who wouldn't?

June 22, 2008

'Help' from the children

This afternoon I was running around trying to get some things finished. I wanted to post some pictures of my last knitting project and the kids had the camera, so I asked them to snap a few pictures for me. Could they place the burp pad on the table? No. Could they place it on the couch? No. Could they place it on the floor? No. They decided to do a photo shoot called "Burp Pads in Space." Yes, L would toss it in the air and R would snap the picture.

Our neighbors are waiting to see if their adoption is going to go through and I'm knitting my fingers to the bones trying to get burp pads or whatever else I can think of finished. Ah, I remember those days of colic and never having enough burp pads. I just cannot knit enough for that!

Here's a much better shot. I used the pattern from the Mason Dixon knitting book. I bought one of those 'big bull honking' (to quote my husband) skeins of cotton from AC Moore and have been knitting on it, trying to make a dent in it. So far I've gotten this burp pad and two dish cloths for my MIL. I've still got quite a bit left. What to knit from it next....

June 18, 2008

Today is my Birthday...I am old....

Today is my birthday. I have been spoiled rotten and enjoyed every second of it! The kids asked what my perfect day would be and I said something about RL having the day off and going to the movies or doing something fun that we don't normally do. So, RL worked half a day and we went out to a local BBQ place for lunch. It's been such a beautiful day that we sat at the picnic tables outside the restaurant. Then it was time to pick a movie. I wanted to see Indiana Jones or Kung Fu Panda. But we all really wanted to see Get Smart. Since that's not out until the 20th, we decided to wait until then. I opted for miniature golf. Now, if you know me at all, you know that's a dangerous activity. I broke my leg when I was six playing miniature golf. (It's a skill not many have.) It's been well over ten years since we've taken the kids so we went. The breeze was great and the temperature was reasonable, so we had a great time. R got the highest score and was bumming. We told her that she won! She got the highest score. No, she didn't buy it, but we got a smile out of her.

Here's the beautiful Forsythia they got for me from Joe's Landscaping. The kids were very sneaky! L hid upstairs with the phone to call Michelle to see if she had any. R called Mom to take them to the nursery. I had no idea! Sneaky, sneaky, sneaky!

Isn't this a cute bag they had it in?
I've been saying for some time that I wanted to do something 'funky' to my hair. Since summer is almost here and it's hotter than hot, I've been tempted to cut my hair. It's almost to my butt and I have never had hair this long. (I had a pixie when I was little.) Now that I'm 'old' and letting my hair grow out, I asked for something to keep me from cutting it. L likes it long and gets upset when I mention cutting it. R has longer hair than me and likes mine long. RL doesn't care, he just doesn't want it short, short. So, Magenta brush-in hair dye was the solution they presented me with this morning with my gifts. It is interesting...and stinks to high heavens! It's 'supposed' to wash out after each use. We'll see about that! I do like it though.

The kids also got some 'replacement' hostas for me. I'm afraid to plant them! There's a bunny in the backyard right now. I think he senses the new greens!

We aren't really having a 'big' celebration today. Mom and Daddy had company last night and today, so I knew they would probably be exhausted from that. They said they were up to it, but I couldn't decide what I wanted for dinner and R didn't have time to bake a cake, so we will be doing that this weekend. The never ending birthday! I got other neat things for my big day too - a skull and crossbones latch hook kit and a hook to go with it, a couple of new outfits, pajamas and the Juno soundtrack. RL said there was something else he was looking for, but I would probably have to order it. Haven't decided if I want to spend the $$$ on it yet, so I'll wait to mention it until I decide.

Thank you everybody for such a great day!

June 16, 2008

Dice Bag - Complete

L, our dedicated D&D player, has been needing some new things to go with the release of the 4th edition of the Dungeons and Dragons books. R and I sewed a new bag to hold his map and then he decided he needed a new dice bag. I had found this Dice Pouch pattern(http://katydidknits.blogspot.com/) some time ago. When L saw it, he decided he wanted the largest bag. We went to AC Moore and he picked out the color of yarn he wanted. Man! He is quick! When R and I go yarn shopping it can take all day. I hadn't even finished describing what type of yarn he needed and he had already thrown it into the buggy! The boy knows which yarn felts and which ones won't. He's been paying attention! I'm so proud! This is a before shot. Kind of looks like a weird shaped hat, doesn't it?
It called for eyelets for the drawstring. The pattern said to lace non felting material through the eyelets so they don't felt. It sounds like the designer found out about that the hard way!
This is the felted product. I kind of got distracted during the felting process. I was very, very alert to it during the first cycle. Then I decided to clean the bathroom and one thing led to another...you know how it goes.
Looks like a flower, doesn't it?
Here's the lopsided finished product. Maybe the railing is lopsided. No, I know the railing is lopsided! Regardless of the size, I had a very pleased son, so that was worth it all!

June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day Daddy! I love you very much and hope you have a great day.
Any idea when this was taken? I know you were having more fun than you look like you were having....right?????

Happy Father's Day Popo!
Don't you love this death-defying feat? And those are my boys helping him...stand on a swing no less!

Here's Popo doing what he does best...relaxing and taking it all in.

We hope you both have a great day! Love, RL, K, R and L

June 14, 2008

Murder and Mayhem in the Garden

Our evening venture to the garden revealed more than we could handle. The beans have turned to the dark side. R had to rescue one of our flamingos from being strangled by a wayward bean stalk. It was horrible. But, my friends, that was just the mayhem. The murder was far more tragic....One of those 'cute, cuddly' rabbits has entered into dangerous territory. The victim is below:
That is all that is left of one of my Mother's Day hostas. I was distraught. Never have my hostas fallen victim to such atrocities. I don't want to talk about it. Thimbleanna warned me and I refused to listen. I'm so sorry I doubted you!

Okay, my green thumb sleuths...what is that tree up above? The past two years it has fallen victim to Japanese Beetles. However, this year it is doing great! Hopefully it will stay that way.This is the fruit that grows on it. R said it was a cherry plum tree. Does anybody out their know? We have no idea if you can eat the fruit or not. L said you could eat it, but he wasn't sure of the results. True. Nobody was willing to try it though.
I finished knitting L's dice bag. I think I over did it in the felting department though. I'll take some more pictures when it dries and show you before and after.
UPDATE: Another hosta has fallen victim and the flamingo is in the process of bean strangulation again. Can't trust the garden at all.

June 11, 2008

Finally Some Finished Knitting

"Knit on, with confidence and hope, through all crises." - Elizabeth Zimmerman
Due to a sucky week I have been trying to knit some worries away. Didn't work, but I did finish a pair of socks! I had the yarn in my stash and started knitting these socks when RL was in Florida a couple of weeks ago. It's the same pattern I used for Mom's Mother Day Socks. Now I'm getting ready to knit a dice bag for L's D&D dice. He picked out the yarn a couple of weeks ago, but since I'm a one project at a time person, I had to wait until these were finished.

Anybody have any idea what this tree is? RL brought it back from his Mom and Dad. There was a man in their neighborhood years ago who's name was Bob Odell. Everybody in the neighborhood had a sapling from the tree and it was known as the 'Bob Odell tree'. I don't mind calling it that, but would like to know what it is so we can figure out where to plant it! Any ideas?

June 9, 2008

Flamingos on Duty

The garden continues to grow by leaps and bounds. R goes out with a marker every morning to mark where the beans are on their support poles. Later in the day we see that they have grown a couple of inches. Maybe that's what the flamingos are doing - watching beans grow. I hope we'll see some proof that something is producing veggies soon. We do have a few cherry tomatoes showing up as well as some blackberries trying to change color. I'm anxious for the squash! I love squash and the past few years, bugs have gotten into the few little plants we had.
Now that summer is definitely starting to show and school is starting to wind down, I'm reminded of something that happened a few years ago. I think I need to explain something before I start. We have homeschooled our children for all but a few years of their school lives. R went to kindergarten, 1st, 2nd and 4th grade in a public school. L went to school for kindergarten and 1st grade. Now that they are 17 and 20, I believe it is safe to say that I am used to having them around. If they aren't around, I feel like I'm missing an arm or leg. You can recognize homeschooling families in your local stores. A whole bunch of us moms wear denim jumpers - our homeschool uniform! Our children are seen in public during school hours until we can't stand people asking why they aren't in school. (Wal-Mart can be a 'math for daily living' field trip.) Now to the story - a few summers ago, we were in Wal-Mart and it was just a couple of days into summer vacation. I mean a couple of days at the most! Some little kid was just chattering away to his dad about whatever was on his mind. I didn't really notice it as excessive chatter because mine are talking all the time! This kid's dad turned around and said, "For the love of God, will you shut-up!" Somehow I seriously doubt this was a homeschooling dad or that this dad was going to make it until August! I admit that not all homeschooling parents should homeschool and some do not have the patience to be with their children 24 hours a day. However, a big majority of us love our kids and enjoy their company and wouldn't even notice excessive talking. Mine come by it honestly - just ask my mom!

June 7, 2008

Yep, It's Still Hot!

Nope, it's not an accurate reading, but it sure felt this hot! This thermometer is right outside my bedroom window in the sun. The only time it's sorta accurate is when the sun isn't beating down on it. Lately that's not happening. The air is very still and kind of shocks your system when you first head outside.
This poor little fella was trying his best to cool it on the deck. I'm not sure if he is the same squirrel that was spread out on one of the beech tree limbs yesterday or not. R was convinced he had passed out or died. We kept checking him to make sure he was breathing.
I know this is a little hard to see, but his little guy has the right idea. He is sprawled out on the edge of the birdbath! Looks quite comfortable to me.
The only thing happy in this heat is the cactus. It was in the yard when we moved here. It's been moved, mowed, trampled - you name it. After ten years it decided to show us just what it could do. L was walking around in the back yard when he spotted the bloom and of course we had to run inside to get the camera. I guess some things are happier in dry, hot conditions!

June 5, 2008

It is So Hot!

How hot is it? It is sooooo hot...we're in the 90's. Tomorrow should be in the upper 90's. Where is this place? I thought I lived in North Carolina? A week or so ago it was in the 60's for a high. What happened? The garden is loving it - as long as it gets it's daily dose of watering. The gerber daisies aren't enjoying it. When I get the mail in the morning the poor stems are seriously drooping. A little water and time and they spring back up, looking, well, fresh as a daisy. Har har snort.

This is Raven. Her family is on vacation for a couple of days, so I've been keeping an eye on her. When the weather is a decent temperature, she is all over the place. However, when it's like it has been this week, she is under the deck. It's really kind of funny. She has dug out a cool spot for herself and will bark like she means business. However, she's no dummy! She won't come out for anything! She's been eating okay, but she's not drinking like I think she needs to. I'm glad her mom and dad are coming home so they can worry about her instead of me! Next week I get to take care of our other neighbors place. I am the official neighborhood watch.

RL came home Tuesday night. What a great sight he was for sore eyes! I had missed him soooo much! His a/c went out somewhere in Georgia and he looked miserably hot by the time we saw him. A cold shower, a cold coke, a good dinner and he was as good as new. His truck is protesting the long trip and refused to start this morning, but I don't think he minded too much. It just meant he got to take the car - with the working a/c! His Dad seems to be doing very well. He was sick a couple of times while RL was there but is still able to be out and about most of the time. They went to the beach and watched the shuttle go up. When you live on the space coast of Florida all your life, you kind of take the shuttle for granted. You watch it from your driveway and listen to your windows rattle shortly after take off. When you live 600 miles away, you forget just how special all that is. I think they enjoyed being able to watch it right on the ocean. He got to catch up with his brothers and one of his college buds. He worked his butt off trying to get as much done for his parents as he could and they truly appreciated it. But I appreciate him being back home!

Yes, I'm still knitting. I've got one sock almost finished and will start on its mate soon. L has requested a dice bag for his D&D dice, so I need to get that going soon. I've got all kinds of things I want to do - just have to find the time!

June 3, 2008

Bunnies in the Garden

Can you see the well camouflaged bunnies near the garden? What a surprise to look out the back door and find our visitors! R grabbed the camera and started snapping pictures. Some of them look kind of like pictures of the lochness monster or big foot - not clear at all. However, when you are taking a picture through a sliding glass door, using a digital camera and through binoculars, this is pretty darn good!
RL will be home tomorrow! YES! We are so beyond ready for him to be here. He will probably need a vacation when he gets back! His Dad started back to chemo today and RL stayed through the second half of his treatment with him. He couldn't get over how wonderful the staff was. I'm not surprised. The woman who owns Knit Picky is a former oncology nurse and has the greatest personality. I think it takes a special person to work around very sick people and keep them upbeat. I think RL got his Mom and Dad caught up with their yard work and other chores around the house. He also caught up with an old buddy that he hadn't spent much time with in many, many years. He did miss our 11th anniversary of living in NC. R reminded us - I had forgotten! We had a nice dinner and watched a movie - a low key anniversary, but enjoyable.

I'll update more after RL gets home. Have a day!