Thursday, April 24, 2008

What's blooming?

I tried to load pictures of dogwood, iris, bleeding heart, hosta (not blooming yet, of course, but growing well), lilac, and even dandelion, but got an error. Things are really very pretty around here. The bald cypress trees are starting to turn green, but the black walnut still looks dead. I finished the first mowing yesterday and started the second. I hope to be able to do more today, but right now that doesn't look very likely.


Tuesday was my monthly visit to the oncologist. Things are stable, so I continue the same medication regime.

Friday, April 18, 2008


Early this morning I awoke with my bed shaking. I opened my eyes to see if Lexi was at the foot of my bed shaking it. She wasn't - she was asleep in her cot. I went back to sleep. When I turned on the radio after the alarm sounded, I heard that there had been an earthquake centered less than 200 miles from here. I guess that's what shook my bed.

I've done quite a bit of mowing this week. I need to get more gas before I can finish the yard. Then I'll have to start over on the part I did first. They're predicting rain for this afternoon and tomorrow, so unless I go for that gas now (which I don't feel like doing), I probably won't be able to mow until Sunday afternoon.

Saturday, April 12, 2008


Last Sunday I wished I had my camera with me, so I made sure I took it when I went there yesterday for the Heartland Lace Guild meeting. This is the mobile that is hanging in the church. The sexton (janitor) folded the cranes, recycling service sheets that people left in the pews. Isn't it lovely. The single strand to give a closer view is hanging outside the acolyte vesting room.

After the meeting, I stopped in the hospital to see my friend Shirley. She has been moved to the Transitional Care Unit, which is operated according to nursing home regulations. She said she is now halfway through the radiation therapy, and should be allowed to go home after that. She will then need some chemotherapy, which will be on an outpatient basis. I'll be glad to help with transportation for that, but she knows that being here to get Lexi off the school bus takes precedence.

One of the nurses has asked Shirley to teach her to knit, so she asked if I could bring her some yarn and needles - she'd replace from her stash when she got home. I told her I don't need replacements; I'm trying to reduce my stash. So after church tomorrow I'll visit her again and give her some knitting supplies. I selected some light-colored worsted-weight acrylic; the light colors make it easier to see the stitches. I don't have any straight needles - gave them all away years ago (there was an appeal for needles and yarn for refugees somewhere in eastern Europe), since I prefer to use circulars (or double-pointed ones for socks and other things with only a few stitches), but I found that I have more 29" circulars in sizes 8 and 10 than I'll ever need at one time, so I put one of each of them in the bag. That should be enough for knitting lessons. I'm always glad to do what I can to get another person hooked on knitting or crochet, although when it comes to actually teaching them, I'm no good.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Why is it that the same temperature in the house feels colder in April than it does in January?
The redbud is blooming now (Lexi wants to know why it is called redbud when it's purple), and so are my flowering crabapple trees. The four mature ones are a variety that have russet leaves and pink blossems, so they are now brilliant pink. The small onw that friends gave me four years ago when I had my houe blessed has green eaves and white flowers, so it is calmer. The lilac and dogwood should both be blooming within a week.


I saw the Yarn Harlot (Stephanie Pearl-McPhee) last night in Brentwood TN (next to Nashville). That is her taking a picture of her current sock-in-progress. Some day I may learn to us my camera better.
I rode down with another knitter from Paducah - nice getting aquainted conversations on the way down and back. I got home at 12:30 am and went to bed immediately. I was so keyed-up by the evening that I was still awake at 2 o'clock. I guess I went to sleep shortly after that, and awoke about 9.
I bought Stephanie's new book, Things I learned from Knitting, and had her sign it. I've been reading some of it this morning. A review cited on the dust cover calls her 'the knitting world's Erma Bombeck.' I think that's very apt - I loved Erma Bombeck too.

Monday, April 7, 2008

It must be spring

I mowed for about two hours today! Not all at once - I have to build up my stamina. About an hour and fifteen minutes the first time on the section on the south side of the house; then a couple of hours later, about forty-five minutes in the fenced area behind the house. There's lots more to do, but they're predicting thunderstorms for at least the next three days, so it may be a while before I get more done. My hands sure are sore. I finally put on gloves, but not before I got a blister on the heel of my right hand. It's all that soft living all winter.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Birthday Parties

Lexi is at one this afternoon. It's across the road from her dad's parents, so they provided the gift for her to take.

She's going to another one (a sleep-over) on Monday (it's Spring Break) for one of her classmates. Alyssa said she really didn't have money for a gift, but asked what the girl likes. Lexi said she likes to draw, and she likes Barbies. Great! Barbies make it easy. Three or four months ago I knit a bunch of Barbie clothes, including some watchcaps. They're mostly from leftover sock yarn. I think a couple of outfits will make a very nice birthday gift.

I was going to put some of these things in the gift shop at the Art Guild, but now I think I'll keep them here for Lexi to use as birthday gifts for her friends. Probably every girl in this country between five and ten has at least one Barbie or other fashion doll. Handknit clothes for them is something the girls probably don't have.

This was Lexi's desert on Thursday night. Such creativity with toothpicks and mini-marshmallows! She asked Alyssa and me if we wanted some, but we both declined. I only like marshmallows if they're roasted on a bonfire. Alyssa is even more particular - they have to be part of a s'more.

And here's little girl walking up the driveway from the school bus. Looks like she's almost dragging her jacket.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Changes - again

My son-in-law is on his way back to NJ as I write. I took him to the bus station in Paducah this morning. He called a short while ago and said they had left Clarksville TN and were on their way to Nashville. I think he changes buses there and heads east to Richmond VA, where he changes again and heads north to Baltimore for another change. He'll get to Atlantic City about 4 pm tomorrow.

Now we need to get that bedroom painted a nice girly color of Lexi and Alyssa's choosing. One of my friends suggested painting one wall (or at least a large section of it) with blackboard paint and buying colored chalk for Lexi to draw with. I like the idea and so does Alyssa - we haven't mentioned it to Lexi yet. That will be her room, so we might as well have it something she'll like.

Medical - but not mine

While I was in Paducah, I went to Western Baptist Hospital to visit my friend Shirley. She's been having a lot of pain in her shoulder for three or four months, and has been to several kinds of doctors and a physical therapist. A neurologist finally suggested cancer in her upper spine. She had appointments set up for bone scan and CT scan on Tuesday, and a visit to my oncologist on Wednesday. However, on Saturday she could no longer stand the pain and had friends drive her to the emergency room at Baptist. She was admitted and has had those tests and others, plus a biopsy yesterday. The results of the biopsy are not in yet, but while I was there today a man came with a wheelchair to take her to the radiation therapy department. So I guess by now she has a bunch of marks on her showing where they need to direct the radiation. I had that on an outpatient basis last year.


Yesterday was a beautiful day. (I just saw a rabbit in my yard!) I burned paper trash and got the lawn mowers out of the back shed. I thought maybe I'd get to mow some today, but it's been raining all day. After Lexi got home from school, we walked around the yard talking about various trees and other plants that are getting ready to bloom. She seems interested, so I figure that if I start telling her the names of things and what I know about them, eventually she'll know something about gardening. We picked some cilantro to put on the pork chops for supper. We were pulling it out of the gravel path of the herb garden - it's only about an inch high at this point.

After supper, she was really bugging me and I raised my voice to her. She told me I should stop taking 'the grumpy medicine.' She's heard me say that the steroids I take four days a month make me grouchy, so that's what she was talking about. However It was last week that I took the Decadron and the side effects have worn off, so they had nothing to do with my raised voice yesterday. She wouldn't believe that her actions had anything to do with it, of course.