Thursday, December 20, 2007

"Ice Storm" Comes to Town! was cold and snowy last night! The winds howled and I worried about the bar-b-que rolling away, or the hot tub cover blowing off. Both of these have happened before so it is not wasted concern.

Day broke and we have a beautiful new layer of snow! I love these days. The fire is warm inside, clove spiced coffee is brewing, the kids are out shoveling the snow, and I get to see what the storm left behind.

Do you see it? Look closer....there on the Lilac bush....

Ahhh, the new Lorna's Laces Limited Edition sock yarn!! It is a Jimmy Beans Wool exclusive called Ice Storm and I have to tell you I swiped up two hanks fast before it melted away. I also have become addicted to the Lion and Lamb and that silk wool blend will be stunning with beads in this colorway. I ordered two of those, they should be in the shop today. Stay tuned for pictures....I can hardly wait myself!!

Now, what to knit? What to knit? I think I will try Jeanne's amazing new sock pattern....AGAIN! I love the pattern but honestly I think that nothing will look prettier with these colors...unless I went with something lacy. As I said, what to knit? Ideas?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

I call it my "shrine to tack" but I mean better...

If it is plastic and lights up...I say let me have it! Having said that, I honestly only have my nativity and my snow globe with Snoopy. I fantasize of a yard full of silly plastic reindeer, or the singing Christmas carolers, or my giant pine tree all lit up with lights...but that as I said, is a fantasy.

In the mean time I do dearly love my outdoor nativity. For some people putting up the tree caps the holiday cheer. For others it is finishing all the shopping. For me it is when I can look outside and see baby Jesus being held close....and my kneeling Santa looking on. I have added Wise Men from eBay, and a Sheppard Boy from Wally World. I found my ox and lamb someplace else, and it all just sort of comes together and makes me really happy.

We have set it up in various places in our yard over the years. Each time it goes up, I say "Oh! That is my favorite place!" Sort of like each stage my children got to in their growing up years I thought was my "favorite". Sitting, crawling, walking....gulp!...driving!! (No, I actually don't like that one)

I do like where it is this year because I can see it from the couch. In the evening I can look out, past the tree wrapped with gifts, and see the real Reason for the Season. I can see the snow falling in our current blast of a cold winter storm and see Mary holding her precious boy, like I held my precious boys. I see it and I remember, even if it is my "shrine to tack" as I lovingly call it. I remember God came down in the most humble way to begin showing Himself to His creation relationally. There was so much love in that beginning, and so much more love the ending of the story.

Merry CHRISTmas!!

Monday, December 17, 2007

It's a "Three-fer"

We all finished and are proudly sporting our hats. Three very different color combinations, but all gorgeous! The kits are available at Jimmy Beans Wool
and not only in hats...there are sock kits, sweaters and vests.

Allie was able to spend time with Kathryn Alexander at her studio and home earlier this year. We tease her about knowing everyone, but it really is not a joke. She wrote about it in her blog:

Kathryn's home is her studio. It is as rich in color as any place I've ever been. Warm and inviting - cut pile rugs of many styles covering hardwood floors. Her work covers her walls, saddles, harnesses and bridles accent the rooms. Baskets of yarn are artfully arranged beside sofas that blend in only because they also carry dozens of colors. How inspiring! Creativity abounds, fer shur. The only black/white/gray I observed was a Peter Collingwood rug. Oh, my.... Friend's work also adorn the walls, and I noticed a silk weaving that could only have come from Sara Lamb. I ran to the car to grab my camera - only to find I'd left it behind at Gus's house. How sad is that?? A lovely lunch and glass of wine, stories about Habu, exchanges of ideas to help Gus along with his fledging fiber business. A visit to the barn and much-needed closeness with horses. The most tidy barn I've ever been in, and Kathryn emailed a few days later to tell me she was vacuuming the spider webs from the rafters. Now THAT is one devoted horse-woman!

I can dream that someday I will meet her, but until then I can brag that "I know Allie"!!


I seriously love this pattern! I have finished another one for my niece in time for her next visit. I know she will love it, but my sister in law has a thing for pink on her niece picked blue. I will try and spin it as a Hawaiian blue and hopefully that will work. They did have a family trip there earlier this year so that may have inspired the color choice.

I should also say that I have the most amazing sister in law, and she in no way would be rude. My standing joke with her is that I could give her gag gift of the rubber doggie poo and she would make it seem like the most amazing rubber doggie poo
she ever got and she loves it! She really is gracious in receiving, but she just has these amazing little girls who truly are precious little princesses.

Princess number one got a brown Drive Thru in the spring. It was actually meant for a nephew but I was told it would never fit his chubby little she got it by default because she begged me.

Princess number two will be receiving a blue Drive Thru....what are the odds? I say that blue and brown both go nicely with pink!

The Good with the Bad

So, late last year we bought a bigger car for the family. With all the driving of highschool kids, and my own kids being HUGE, it was time to bump up. Now I will say that I am probably in the minority, but I actually liked my minivan. It was the first "new" car I had ever driven and it was darn good to me. I really didn't want to sell it but then we really couldn't keep it either. The only problem was that every time I got serious about selling it, someone needed it. A friend taking her daughter off to college, another family whose car was in the shop, more seatbelts needed for a youth group just kept coming. The van came close to being a ministry all it's own.

I have listed it off and on with Craigs List, and got a few emails, but still no sale. I kept wondering what to do. I refused to pay money to sell a car and so this was really the only thing I persued.

Now that we are pretty certain my son's car will be officially totaled, it is suddenly clear why we still have the van. Not the coolest car for him to drive, but paid for none the less and it is reliable. So, wouldn't you know that we have a real offer on it from a posting I made the day of the accident! Go figure!

My son passes his Eagle Scout board, but on the way has his first vehicle accident. A week later he turns 18, and on his birthday we get the bad news that they won't fix it.... but will total it. The day we decide to keep the van, we get the offer to buy it.

Life sure has it's ups and downs, eh?

Saturday, December 08, 2007

One more hat!

But this one is a good one! Not just ANY hat I gotta tell ya! If you click on the pictures they get bigger and you can see how much fun this pattern full of color really was. I am dying to start the entrelac socks now!

The morning after

Finally! It came in the night and we woke up lucky to have power, though no satellite. Oh well, Tivo is good for backup television if desperate. No one was watching it, however, until the snow was all dug away from decks, driveways, walkways and cars. There was also the insurance company to call, and wrecked vehicles to sort out.

A days spent knitting while waiting for the phone to ring. Wha
t a nice diversion from all the chaos in my brain. I finished up my Kathryn Alexander hat! Yeah! It is way more cute than even I imagined. It was fun, the yarn divine and the result pure colorful whimsy. Hurry up with the blocking already! Dry hat, is in front of the wood stove and I keep checking. Like the watched pot that will not boil, the hovered over hat will not dry....or something like that.

The phone rings: We may pay a fortune for insurance but I have to say that it is nice in a crisis. They called back and not only is the deductible less than I thought, it covers a rental car.

Deciding what UFO to tackle next or should I start my Noro sweater? I am just thinking that maybe simply winding up a ball of the Transitions will make me feel better. Then there is that darn sock for Jeanne. It would feel so good to hand that over someday. How is it that you can honestly love a yarn and a pattern but still can't manage to finish a darn sock for crying out loud?

The phone rings: They are determining the accident to be "no fault"!!! Yeah!! This means my son's rates won't go up. They are looking into a suspected blow out of his tire, causing the accident, and might even waive the deductible. My last worry is that somehow the truck is not totaled. It does not take much damage to exceed the value of a car. So I will keep staring at the phone....

...and I will go pinch my hat some more, and look for my swift and winder!!

"Hold on, it's going to be a bumpy night...."

"Where are you?"
"Just leaving Club"

"Are you in the car?"
"Yeah, I just have to drop off a few kids and I will be heading home"
"Can someone else take them home? You need to come back right now"
"No, I'm committed. What's the matter? It's not snowing that badly yet".......

"Josh has been in an accident"

The words you never want to hear as a mom. It is late at night, I am on the other side of a mountain summit, it is the beginning of our first major snow storm, and my son is a million miles away as far as I'm concerned. A thousand q
uestions are flooding my mind but there are no immediate answers. I know that he is not hurt but does that mean he is in some sort of shock and not feeling it?

I remember that right before I left for the night I felt a nudge to pray for him. He was heading out shortly after me to go to his Eagle Scout Board of Review. I turned around and hugged him. I wished him all the good stuff and encouragement that a mom can offer, and I prayed for him. That was the calm that got me through. I had an amazing peace because I knew God had been invited into the evening. He was a part of it all and I just needed to drive safely and stay calm.

It all ended well. Josh was unhurt and left his broken car in a ditch. Someone drove by and saw him, then took him to his Board of Review meeting. They offered to re-schedule but I was told by one of the board members that my son "Cowboyed Up" and said "No, I am here to do this thing". So in a night of crazy adventure he passed his Eagle Scout board for our troop and his last hurdle is the board with the area council.

On my way home I went to see the could have been so much worse. I am so grateful that this is the worst of it so far, but boy howdie, does having teens make your heart ache!