About Me

My photo
Six years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Today has been something of a beating.

Don't get me wrong: I got a lot done at work, and I'm reasonably pleased with that. Not everything got done, but the important stuff did.

Remember several weeks ago when I saw that skirt that I fell in love with, and by the time I was in a position to order it, it was sold out?  It was back in stock last night, but apparently not in my size. So I emailed customer service and asked if they were planning to reorder and if so, this is the size I need. I was delighted to have a response this morning that said it was in stock; it's just that my size was not listed where I'd expected it to be. I messaged the kids here at home and asked them to give me the promo code for whichever coupon was on my desk that hadn't expired and would give me the best discount. Bam! 30% off! I ordered that baby, applied the discount, got confirmation, and two hours later received a highly apologetic email. My order was cancelled, because they'd oversold. As a consolation, they gave me another discount code good for 90 days.

You may have seen pictures of the gas lines here in Texas as a result of Harvey. I am ever so glad that I tanked the Tardis when I went to Costco on Tuesday. There were three separate lines vying for entrance to the Racetrac near my house. Blocking lanes. Clogging parking lots. Complicating intersections. It was that way at almost every gas station I passed on the way home. There will be no unnecessary driving this weekend (it's expected to get better after Labor Day). But I will be surprised if it's improved sufficiently for me to get to Knit Night next Tuesday. We shall see.

I came home in need of comfort food, so I fired up the oven and got two individual pizzas ready to bake. When I took them out of the oven, my hand slipped, and it made brief contact with the oven. The good news is that, as a result of Middlest's migraines and Fourthborn's recent surgery, there are plenty of ice packs in the freezer compartment, and I was able to ice it down almost immediately.

In happier news, on the drive home there was a car in the other lane whose driver had the windows open and her left hand up on the soft top, gently tapping out the beat to whatever was on her radio. It was lighthearted and graceful, and it heartened me. I hope she had a wonderful surprise waiting for her when she got home.

Pizza is down the hatch, and my plans for tonight include a couple of loads of laundry (there was a pile of towels on top of the washer when I went out to the garage to wash a load of whites), cutting out most or all of the pieces for the quilt blocks that need to be done on Saturday, maybe sewing a little, and definitely knitting.

Tomorrow I take Middlest to the monthly doctor visit, convey an Rx to the pharmacist, and take it and Middlest home before going in to work. I will be wearing one of my Packers shirts, and last night I polished the earrings I made in the silversmithing class in Fredericksburg. I get to wear my comfy sneakers all day. And it's payday.

This is the part where I put the clean, wet towels into the dryer so I can wash the whites and start being a cut-up.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

First day back at work.

There were 71 emails waiting for me, one voicemail, and three days of mail, plus the usual assortment of ToDo's. I got the emails wrangled in about three hours of concentrated attention, the emails done an hour or so after that, and all three days of mail gone through, plus my ToDo's. Truly a miracle on the order of the loaves and fishes. I am ever so grateful. I have some self-generated subfolders in my ZZ-Secretary folder, which is where I throw things that need to be worked as a result of the day's mail or the ToDo's my attorneys give me. I hope to catch all of them up tomorrow.

My Green Bay Packers shirts were waiting for me as well. I haven't tried them on, but I've held them up against me, and I think both will fit just fine. I'm going to have so much fun wearing one of them to work on Friday.

Made a little more progress on Justice's vest today and will put in a few more rows before bedtime. Before that, I'm going to press all of the fabric for the quilt blocks so they'll be ready to cut out tomorrow night. I have no intention of firing up the sewing machine tonight. But if tomorrow goes as smoothly as today did, sewing will be a great way to cap off the evening.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Two out of three.

Fourthborn is feeling significantly better. I had a ginormous nap this afternoon and am feeling somewhat more rested. Middlest is in the batcave with a migraine.

In knitting news, I've completed the slit in the side panel of Justice's vest. I'm going to tink back a couple of rows and move the last of those central decreases down a smidgen, and then it's a smooth canter to the hem.

I've deliberately kept this day simple. Quarterly diabetes check plus flu shot (in one arm and out the other), breakfast, elevenses, nap, light dinner, and knitting.

I finished The Book of Mormon on Sunday. Yesterday was rather chaotic, and I forgot. This morning I started over with 1 Nephi Chapter 1 on the way to my appointment, realized that my mind kept jumping to mundane things, and listened again, more carefully, on the drive home. For the first time it occurred to me to wonder if the angel who brought the record for Father Lehi to read, might have been Moroni, and if he was the angel who chastened Laman and Lemuel when they were whaling on Nephi and Sam outside the city of Jerusalem on the trip to get the plates of Laban, and if he was the angel who inspired Alma the Younger to straighten up and fly right, and later in Alma's life came to comfort him. Knowing how much Heavenly Father likes the first-shall-be-last and last-shall-be-first principle, it would be fitting if the spirit who became Moroni and wrapped up the record and later loaned it to Joseph Smith, was that first spirit of the twelve whom Father Lehi saw in his vision. None of this is essential to my salvation. But at least I spent some time today pondering, instead of merely listening or half-hearing.

We know from modern revelation that Jesus Christ is the Jehovah of the Old Testament, that the angel Gabriel who announced the big news to Mary, was known as Noah while in mortality, that the archangel Michael was our first earthly father, Adam. Since Noah saved a portion of mankind, I can see how it would be appropriate for Gabriel to announce the coming of a greater Savior. Since Adam ushered in the gift of mortality and the opportunity to choose righteousness, it is only fitting that the great meeting of priesthood brethren, where all priesthood keys are returned to the Savior, should be presided over by Father Adam under the direction of Jesus Christ.

I hope I am still alive to see that day. Oh, how I long for a time when we will not be subject to the whims and wickedness of mortal leaders, when we will have rooted selfishness out of our hearts, when joy and peace and safety flood the earth.

I am sad to learn that the floodwaters from Harvey have breached the Houston temple. I helped to clear brush on the temple site when I went to a singles conference c. 1999. But I am heartened by all the reports of people helping one another, regardless of any differences among them. I hope that much good may result from this catastrophe, that the hearts which are momentarily softened will remain so after the debris and rebuilding are history.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Well, that's done!

Middlest (tired, oh so tired!) Fourthborn sailed through her gall bladder surgery like the trooper that she is. We were stuck at the hospital until she could pee, which required an intervention, but she's managed three times on her own since then. We've got a whole lot of thou-shalt-nots, most of which I remembered from when I had mine out in 2001. Once we were released, we headed to IHOP. Scrambled eggs and dry toast with jelly for her, a full meal for me, as I'd eaten what I thought were all of my snacks about two hours into the day.

Lots of happy knitting and a modicum of frogging today. I finished the shoulder strap on the vest and made a good start on the side panel.

I am still vaguely hungry, notwithstanding having devoured the last of the Fage with a generous spoonful of Nutella stirred in, moments after we got home tonight. I do not think there will be much knitting before bedtime, as my body is screaming for (A) water and (B) sleep. I'm hoping that drinking another bottle of water will suffice to hush my stomach without riling my bladder at 2:00am.

The recovery room was a black hole. No bars on my phone, and no internet connection. So we were incommunicado for at least six hours, and Middlest was fearing the worst. My battery died sometime this afternoon and is still charging.

I have 45 minutes in which to eat or not eat, because tomorrow it's my turn. Quarterly diabetes check, minor Costco run, and I hope at least one nap. I am happy and relieved and knackered.

Sunday, August 27, 2017


Practice, as distinguished from theory; accepted practice or custom. I was cleaning out my inbox this evening, and while reading the newest Snippets (from Mason Dixon Knitting) was led to this and from that, to the website 100 Acts of Sewing. And several new vocabulary words. Enclothed Cognition being another example.

I like learning new stuff.

It's been a weird day. I did get the front and back joined at the shoulder and a few rows worked before church. It was lovely and cool, thanks to Harvey. It was incredibly humid, also thanks to Harvey. As a result, my joints began screaming once I got to church, and I left after sacrament meeting. Fixed lunch, took two ibuprofen, set the alarm for 5:00, and slept through it until 5:30, when Fourthborn knocked on my door to say that the home teacher/visiting teacher were here. I struggled into my bra, put on pajama pants, grabbed my glasses, and came out to be sociable.

Fourthborn's surgery is early tomorrow morning. I will be setting my alarm for obnoxious bleeping sound instead of classical music, so that I will not sleep through it.

And now I'm going to fix a healthy snack, knit a little, and go back to bed. Apparently this is one of those weekends that is meant to be spent horizontal and unconscious.

Saturday, August 26, 2017


I had a perfectly brilliant reasonably coherent blog post vanish night before last. And last night, all I wanted to do was knit. Went to bed somewhat earlier than usual because I'd made an appointment for a spa day for the Tardis. It was time for her 125K mile checkup, and she needed an oil change, and the indicator for battery strength has been running a little low, and then there was that ladder I ran over two or three weeks ago.

So she got an oil change, new plugs and wires, tires rotated, battery checked (normal), and her front end aligned. As that was nearing completion, the mechanic popped his head into the waiting room to ask if I'd been having any trouble with the A/C lately. No, not trouble exactly, but it's been a little slow to cool off when I first turn it on. Yes, please, check that for me. Eight gulps of freon (I don't remember how they measure it, and I'm not at all interested in getting up and going into my room where I tossed the receipt on my bed to find out).

It was a seriously spendy morning, but the first blessing is that there was room for that expense on my credit card, and I have the means to pay it off. The second blessing is that I spent roughly five hours at the shop, and in that time I nearly finished the front to Justice's vest while having great conversations with the other customers and the shop's general manager.

I came home and took quite a lengthy nap after inhaling my lunch. Then I drove to the grocery store, reminding myself to tank the Tardis before buying any food, because I know how I am. Once the food is in the truck, I am beelining it for home, and any thought of gasoline has long since vanished. I wanted a full tank for the Sabbath and for taking Fourthborn to her surgery early Monday morning.

Here's where the next blessing kicks in. I have a shopper's card for that store, and I get fuel points. Today my card told me I could redeem up to 90 cents per gallon. Did I want to? You bet I did! (As you can imagine, gas prices in North Texas have risen dramatically over the past several days due to Hurricane Harvey and the shutdown of oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico.)

So I'm home, and the food is put away, and I'm enjoying Greek yogurt with mango salsa stirred in, which is a relatively healthy way to have chips and salsa. I double-dip like crazy, minimizing the number of chips consumed and completely eliminating any sense of guilt about the endeavor. (I also had mango salsa on top of an otherwise naked salmon burger recently, and it was amazing as well ~ and part of the blog post that vanished.)

I present for your amusement an exchange a few minutes ago between Fourthborn and me. I thought I heard water running out in the kitchen, where she was microwaving a snack.

Me: Are you running water in there?
4B: Yes???
Me: OK, I thought I was hearing things.
Me: Oh. You were washing the thing I asked you to wash.
4B: What were you expecting me to wash it with? Unicorn tears?
Me: It all makes sense now.
4B: They're stoic lately.
Me: What???
4B: They're stoic lately.
Me: Ah.

This is the part where I hit "post" and go knit some more.

P.S. I bought a Clay Matthews jersey and a more girly Packers t-shirt on Thursday. Can you hear Beloved grinning up there in heaven? We have a tradition in our office that from the beginning of college football season through the Superbowl, we can wear college or team jerseys and t-shirts to work on Fridays, with jeans and tennis shoes. I have Beloved's nearly loved to death Packers sweatshirt and his Superbowl 25 t-shirt, which may or may not fit around my tummy the way I'd like after the stress eating of this summer, so I decided to splurge on the jersey I've wanted for five years. Yesterday I wore his BYU t-shirt, which sometimes doubles as a sleep shirt, so it will probably be in the hamper most Fridays. And besides, Clay Matthews, who won my heart as much as anyone who was not Beloved could, five years ago with his smartphone commercial.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The back part of the second vest is done.

I've got three rows worked on the front part but needed to take a break and fold some laundry.

Had a really good day at work. Steadily busy, and no ugly surprises in my workflow.

Have booked an appointment for dark-thirty on Saturday morning for the 125K mile checkup on the Tardis: rotate tires, check the brakes. She also needs an oil change, and it might be time to replace the battery.

Braum's was out of buttermilk when I stopped in to restock after picking up a prescription. Sigh...

I'm hoping that this weekend involves nothing more complicated than knitting and naps after the Tardis's checkup is done. I'm still recouping my energy after last weekend. Middlest, last we spoke, was feeling lousy, slightly grumpy (but understandably so) and is presently sawing logs while Fourthborn noodles on the laptop and I blog.

In my Book of Mormon listening while I drive to work, I'm almost to the end of the Book of Moroni, and his sadness and loneliness are palpable. I can't imagine being on the run for 20 years, the last surviving member of a once-great nation, pursued by the descendants of his unrepentant uncles. When I meet him on the other side, after I thank him for keeping the records and loaning them to the prophet Joseph for translation, I want to bear-hug him and hand him a brownie.

Because nothing says thank you for saving my life like chocolate with love baked into every bite.

Monday, August 21, 2017


Oh good grief. This is not lavender yarn. It's a lovely rich grey tonal. Why do things skew warmer on my phone? And I think it's going to be chain mail when it grows up. That was Fourthborn's idea, anyway.

I got up at 5:00 this morning to be out the door at 6:00 to be at my desk by 7:00. Going to work an hour and a half early is wonderful on several levels. My choice of parking spots. No ringing phone. No conversations until the time I would normally be there. I got all of my attorneys' mail out before I left the office at 11:00 to come get Fourthborn and take her to her appointments.

Taking this groggy body to bed now.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Not the usual Sabbath around here.

As I was getting ready to go to church, Middlest called. "They're going to discharge me." (About half an hour into sacrament meeting.) So I called/texted a friend to cover for me in leading the music, and I also texted the Bishop. Instead of getting into a skirt, I got into jeans and a T-shirt, grabbed my knitting and a bottle of water, and headed off to the hospital.

We had to wait until Middlest's lunch was delivered, the dietitian brought a sheaf of news we can use, and then I took my kid home.

Mel-Mel-Chan and Squishy had scooped up Fourthborn for a Tinies Brunch at a local restaurant. They brought her home shortly after I had fixed myself a snack and was settling in at the computer. Our friend Andi also came, and we had a nice visit. The non-resident kids took the non-resident dolls we've been hosting during and after their move, so the dining room table is bare except for Celeste, and Harmony, who are looking up at the starscape on the ceiling.

I will be buying lots of bland, barely-nutritious food for Middlest for the next four to six weeks. We are whole grain heaven in this house, which is incompatible with healing my kid's gut.

I have also done two loads of laundry today, but we had undies in the mire and bedding that smelled (to Middlest, not to me) like I don't know why I'm sick, but I sure feel gross. I had a luscious, long nap after everybody left, so I'll be able to stay up until the towels go into the dryer. Right now I'm drying a fluffy, sheds-all-over-everything blanket separately, on low heat and less-dry.

In knitting news, I've made huge strides on the vest back. I'm hoping to get the longest swathe of stitches onto a holding thread before calling it a day. I'm also getting up at dark-thirty in order to be at my desk at 7:00 tomorrow (an hour and a half ahead of usual) so I may put in four hours before scurrying home to fetch Fourthborn for her two appointments.

Feeling wonderfully blessed, except that my left ankle is taking exception to the hurry up and wait that was this weekend. It's nowhere near as swollen as it was when I went home yesterday afternoon, but it ain't pretty.

Night, y'all.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

In which Middlest and I have adventures.

Middlest has been feeling crummy all week. But not wanting another ER trip that would mean my losing a day of work the following day, my stubborn, wonderful kid minimized the pain until yesterday morning. I went to work knowing that there was a likelihood of an ER trip after work if things didn't magically get better, and I was able to put in a mostly-productive day at the office.

When we went to this ER in April, the doctors were concerned about the presence of air in the abdomen. The hospitalist wanted the surgeon to zip Middlest open. The surgeon said that since there were no visible perforations in the bowel, he advised against it, but if the symptoms got worse, to please come back.

So I came home, wolfed down some leftovers, packed snacks and water bottles into my knitting bag, and off we went.

Since chest pain was part of the constellation of the current symptoms, they checked that first. Heart is blessedly normal. Blood work came back normal as well, so no sign of infection in the body. Also reassuring. This is my kid sporting a Jolly Green Giant condom emesis bag as chapeau, to make me laugh.

They admitted Middlest for observation overnight. I left the hospital about 1:00 this morning, came home and picked up a few things for Middlest, delivered them back at the room, and came home to crash, finally falling asleep about 3:30 and waking five hours later feeling more than marginally human. I went back to the hospital around 10:30 and spent the next several hours waiting with Middlest and updating family as we got more information.

This next picture is from around noon: a portable X-ray machine that to my mind resembles a smiling Transformer. Definitely one of the good guys, because it gave the surgeon news she could use.

While we were waiting for the surgeon (a different one from last time), we amused ourselves with bad jokes and visual puns. My kid on morphine is a hoot, absolutely unfiltered and even more diligent to be kind.

One of the items I took back at ridiculous o'clock this morning was Cloudshine, a gift to Middlest our first Christmas in Fredericksburg. Each of the kids got one of these.

Cloudshine got his name because when he was new, his grey fur glowed like the edge of a raincloud lit from behind. Here he performs downward facing dog.

Because there was a more than slight chance that Middlest would be having exploratory surgery, food and drink were verboten. Which led to this exchange shortly after I got to the hospital this morning:

M: "I was hoping and praying for a break from all the N@zi posts, and now everybody's posting about food. Can I just have the N@zi posts back for a minute?"

You will be amused top know that when I tried to swype "N@zi" on my phone, it offered me "Sashimi" instead. I shared this with Middlest. "Now it's offering fish. I don't even like fish!"

In knitting news, I dropped a stitch on the navy edition of Justice's vest, and despite two crochet hooks and an assortment of needles only managed to make things worse. I did get brave, just before bedtime on Thursday, and compare the new piece to the completed half. They were compatible in size, but the hand of the navy piece was less substantial, almost sleazy. (The yarn itself is most definitely not sleazy, just the fabric I was producing.) So I frogged the navy, picked up the half(ish) ball of green, and cast on the second vest back. As we knitters say, I am now playing yarn chicken. If there is not enough to finish the second half all the way through to the I-cord edging and ties, I have an idea that may work.

Meds are kicking in, and I have church tomorrow morning (after which I will probably head straight to the hospital if I don't also go beforehand).

Thursday, August 17, 2017

My goals for tonight were simple.

Costco run. Wrap the bridal shower gift that I bought last night. Knit.

I'm pleased to report that Fourthborn brought in the Costco stuff, and I put it away.

I spent an hour or so playing with string after wrapping the box my order of doll eyes came in, in paper leftover from First Wife's stash, using all but a narrow irregularly-shaped strip of paper. For the ribbon, I started making I-cord on size 4 needles and decided it would take too long and maybe not look handcrafted (since the gift per se was storebought), so I frogged it and crocheted a sturdy and I hope charmingly eccentric chain with dishcloth cotton and a size E hook. So that's done.

I'm a little afraid to pull the green vest out of where I put it for safekeeping and compare the gauge of the current piece. I have eight rows to go before I'm supposed to put the first batch of stitches onto a holding thread. The darker yarn feels thinner than the green yarn, and the fabric is a lot more drapey. I'm hoping hat I don't have to felt it ever so gently in order for it to match. It would be way too easy to over-felt it and have to start over.

Fourthborn is reading fan-fic and snickering quietly. It's a nice sound.

My muscle relaxer and something else just kicked in. Time to shove all the stuff I shoved onto the side where I sleep, back to the other side of the bed and call it a night.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

I got the row count figured out.

And I made a (very) little more progress today. I may have one or two more rows in me before calling it a night, but almost certainly no more than that.

We had our monthly support staff meeting today, and I had enough work to keep me pleasantly occupied until quitting time. Hoping for more of the same tomorrow.

We think Middlest may be juggling another kidney stone. Or two. The response to, "How do you feel?" is a consistent, "Like hell." And there are two small bruises on either side of the spine in the place where they show up. We are hoping that this does not mean the other kidney is jealous of all the attention its cohort gets and has decided to get in on the action. We are hoping that there will be no need for another trip to the ER.

Since Middlest came to live with me last year, I have a deeper respect and understanding of the phrase and it came to pass.

Fourthborn would like to go to sleep, and since my computer chair is a foot from the cot, and I am a loud typist (having learned on a bulky and recalcitrant manual machine shortly after the rocks cooled), I'm going to shut this down and go tend to my knitting.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Funnyside up.

I think I found this at World Market about three months ago. I don't remember why I went in there, but I came out with this.

I have yet to take it out of the box, but one of these days I will be in the mood for slightly macabre eggs, and I will be prepared.

We have several independent dyers in my knitting group, and I asked one of them if she'd ever considered dyeing laceweight. She said, yes, eventually, but right now she's building an inventory of fingering and DK. She also gave me a lovely compliment, that if she gets into one of the local yarn festivals (there are several that pass through DFW) as a seller, she'd love for me to knit some doll sweaters for display, to show what the yarn can do.

Oh, twist my arm.

I was having so much fun talking with my friends tonight that I forgot to mark down all of my rows, and now I need to go into my room, close the door, turn on all of the lights, and count rows. Multiple times. Until I'm absolutely certain where I am in the pattern. Because the whole point of obsessively counting rows and making notes regarding the green vest was so that I could sail through the knitting of the second one. And my little boat is leaking logic, order, and contentment.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Raisins eat the blackboard?

What I said was, "Many hands make light work," but Middlest's fan was on high so yeah, it got a little garbled. When I repeated myself, Middlest nodded and replied, "I mean, I know that grapes are acidic, but that seems a little excessive."

We do have fun with words around here. I'm planning to have fun with graph paper in the near future. I found a website where I can print it in metric or imperial, and I've done a little of both. When I get closer to finishing this second section of vest for Justice, I will peel off her borrowed britches and measure her legs for knee socks, transferring those measurements onto 8 to the inch graph paper that I just created. Once I have the basic shape down I can swatch a little and then superimpose that (or some knitters graph paper) over whatever weird shape I come up with and know where to put the increases and decreases.

In theory, anyway.

I've spent the past half hour listening to Middlest and Fourthborn while trying to type, and I'm not succeeding very well because I'm laughing too hard. This is the part where I tell them goodnight and go bond with my knitting.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

"Bond"ing moment.

Fourthborn wisecracked, "No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to dine."

It was delicious, and something of a loaves and fishes experience. After Middlest, Fourthborn, and I had eaten our fill, I portioned out seven small containers of leftovers. Three are in the freezer, and four are in the fridge.

This is the part where I go tend to my knitting.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Can we agree that Pinterest is dangerous?

Here are a flobbity-jillion items we think you might like. They know me so well. I have been seeing Mori skirts and boho this and wouldn't-it-be-great-in-doll-scale that. I asked Fourthborn about Mori style, and she gave me what she knew. I then consulted the Google & Thummim, which sent me right back to Pinterest, as well as to a few websites that were marginally helpful, and another vocabulary word: langenlook. Think Gudrun Sjödrén. Think Tina Givens patterns. Think FLAX. (I have several pieces of FLAX tucked away in a closet, bought when I first went to work for the corporation. I have no idea if any of them fit anymore.

I think my office manager might take it amiss if I suddenly showed up at work dressed like Stevie Nicks. (I know my credit card would definitely take it amiss.) But it would be a fun look for the weekends, when I want to go out in public and not stay home in my jammies.

In knitting news, the green vest is done. It could do with a light blocking, but I think that will wait until the black vest is done. I've cast on part B first and have knitted eight rows.  I also measured out an exceedingly long tail for the long-tail cast-on and have rolled up the surplus and secured it with a locking stitch marker so that when I'm ready to begin the I-cord edging, the yarn will be ready and waiting for me.

It's time for me to take my evening meds and sort out the meds for next week.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Fried rice Friday.

Here are this week's misfortunes, which are actually pretty darn good this time around, at least for Fourthborn and me. At this writing, Middlest is asleep, so we will have to wait and see if they're consistent all the way around.

Fourthborn’s, in the order she opened them:
  1. Invest time and thought in all that you pursue.
  2. You will gain a new sense of confidence this month.
  3. With brains and beauty, you are the complete package.
Mine, likewise:
  1. You will always be surrounded by true friends.
  2. Happiness lies in the road ahead. (Where it will be run over by a semi.)
  3. Delight in a friend’s success.
  4. You are always entertaining and delightful. (Fourthborn says it’s like the cookie thought that, through flattery, it wouldn’t get eaten.
Note: I got the extra cookie because I bought dinner. I asked for half a dozen fortune cookies. They gave us ten.

Middlest woke up and gave us these:
  1. A tempting proposal will soon present itself.
  2. You've got this one in the bag.
  3. Your doubts will turn to happiness soon.
So maybe the string of dubious fortunes has come to an end. And speaking of things coming to an end, I finished the I-cord around the perimeter of the doll vest, wove in those ends, picked out and frogged the tight I-cord around the armscye, and am half done with that. My eyes and brain said enough! so I came out here to finish the post.

Tomorrow's agenda? Cleaning the chapel in the morning. Feeding the sister missionaries in the early evening. And maybe going over to the quilt shop to see the next First Saturday block options for 2017-2018. But mostly knitting, sewing, napping, and the like. I seem to alternate between "catch up on nutrition" weekends and "catch up on sleep". I don't remember which one this is supposed to be.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

This I-cord finish may finish me.

I'd made it all the way down the back edge and rounded that very pointed corner when I took a good long squint at it and decided that the corner needs re-working.

My Thursday night knitting is on hiatus for the rest of the summer. The shop owners want to hold some classes in the evening(s), because classes drive yarn sales, and yarn sales make it profitable to stay open after hours. My once a month (or so) purchases of a single skein of laceweight, and the random purchases of the other knitters, are insufficient to counterbalance the overhead. I will continue to support the shop financially every chance I get.

Of greater eternal significance is the fact that this opens up Thursday nights for temple work. Thursday night was my shift when I served in the temple. Those sister-servants are my peeps.

I found out today that two of the sisters in my ward have family on Guam, and they are understandably concerned about the current tension between the loose screw in Pyongyang and the wing nut hothead in the White House. You're probably already praying over this situation. I've got at least two friends in Hawai'i and one in Oz or Oz-adjacent (she and her family move a lot; sometimes I lose track). Maybe I need to put Kim Jong-un's name on the prayer roll at the Dallas temple. Maybe you could at the temple where you serve. Or put him on the prayer roll in your faith's temple, synagogue, mosque, or congregation. Or pepper him with positive thoughts. A Texas hailstorm of positive thoughts.

I need to go take my meds, and I want to stay up all night and knit this I-cord into submission. The first will happen shortly. The latter, over the course of the next few days. Night, y'all.

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Book mug

It followed me home. I'm definitely keeping it

It was a very productive day, I think maybe a little more so than yesterday, and I kept feeling my shoulders and back tense up. Whenever I did, I would stop, take a break, wiggle my shoulders and back, and then get back to work.

I went to the temple afterwards and did initiatories for the three women for whom BittyBit was baptized last Friday. That section of the temple was recently renovated, and it's even more lovely and uplifting than it was before.

From the temple I drove to Costco (I know, sublime to ridiculous, but it needed doing) to exchange the toothbrush heads that I bought on Monday for the correct ones. I hit the grocery store on the way home, picking up a few things for Middlest and a pint of frozen goodness for each of us.

I don't remember if I mentioned that the last batch of fried rice was noticeably more bland than the previous ones. I tried blending the leftovers with Greek yogurt. It was edible but not inspiring. Tonight I did better: the very last of my fried rice with the last of the rosemary ham. Oh. Wow.

I ran into one of my favorite petri sisters (one of the ladies that Beloved dated before and while he was dating me, for those of you who weren't readers since then or before; I asked him once, "How many petri dishes are you running in this Project Wife experiment of yours?") at the temple tonight. Multiple hugs and a "we've got to get together" but she's even more busy than I am, so I don't see it happening until we both retire. But so very nice to see her, and a couple of sisters from my ward, and a warm acquaintance from my old stake.

I forgot to set the alarm last night and awoke only because the Spirit nudged me. So no exercise this morning, and probably only a very little of it tonight, because I don't want to get my heart rate up and be unable to fall asleep.

I picked up most of the stitches around the front and bottom edges of the doll vest today. Pretty sure I won't be finishing that task before I hit the sack, although I might try. Night, y'all.

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

On the other hand...

Today on Facebook I shared this post. There's some language, sorry. I have kids and multiple friends with invisible illnesses. I commented, "Yes. After my bout of vertigo earlier this year, I can testify that it's possible to go from 'normal' (stop laughing) to 'uh-oh' literally overnight. Health is a continuum."

 I said it, and I meant it. And I have a slightly different perspective regarding the handicapped stalls in bathrooms. For most of my life I've carefully stayed out of them whenever possible because I've been reasonably fit and reasonably mobile. The strain of Beloved's illness took a toll on both of us, and my body's not been quite the same since. (Shortly before he passed, we were taking turns with the electric cart at Costco if only one was available.) And I discovered that it was far easier to let myself down onto the commode if I held onto the safety rail on the side of the stall, and exponentially easier to get back up again. I defer to the two women on our floor who use canes regularly and the one who uses one occasionally, but otherwise that's my spot, thank you.

I'm tempted to make a sign to tape on the outside of the door. Something along the lines of, "If you wouldn't dream of parking your car in a handicapped space, why are you parking your derriere in the handicapped stall when there are at least four of us on this floor who genuinely need it?"

OK, I'm done.

In knitting news, I finished the I-cord around the top edge of Justice's vest and have picked up all of the stitches down the back and across the bottom edge. Just need to pick up the stitches running up the front and then it's a long, long slog all the way around those three edges.

Monday, August 07, 2017

How have I missed this for 16 years?

No, not Whataburger per se. The decal on the front door.

Answer: because I typically use the drive-thru. This morning, after Fourthborn's lab work, we paused to refuel before heading home.

Which we did by way of Costco. I dropped Fourthborn and the stuff at the house and headed to the craft store, where I found all sorts of steampunk(ish) goodies and a Texas-sized mug.

I shared that to the widows and widowers group's page.

In knitting news, I'm nearly halfway done with the I-cord bind-off along the top edge of the vest. I got sidetracked by a nap, but I'm heading back to my room shortly to listen to Pandora and knit my fingers off.

Sunday, August 06, 2017


We continue to be amused/bemused by the fortunes in the fortune cookies. My two latest are: "You shall attain great wisdom with each passing year." (The implication being that maybe I'm none too bright at present.) And: "Look for love in the most unlikely of places." Fourthborn snorted and said, "Looks like Mom's making a trip to the gay bar in the future."

Middlest's and Fourthborn's fortunes were not any better, but I'll spare you.

I love how generous with information many in the doll community are. I was exploring one of the Facebook subgroups, and someone asked about the lace trim used on a ceremonial robe in one of the pictures. The doll owner replied with the name of the Etsy shop she buys from, and I wrote down the name to explore after church.

I've since done so, and I am impressed by the variety and the prices. I wish the vendor sold the items in smaller lengths: 5 yards of this, 20 yards of very narrow trim. Some truly gorgeous eyelets, unlike the run-of-the-mill you see in fabric stores here. I will be able to make petticoats for all of my girls and, should I be so inclined, make extras to sell on the Etsy shop I set up several years ago but have never done anything with.

We are almost done with the most recent round of doctor's appointments for Fourthborn. Lab work and well woman tomorrow, then that's it for a couple of weeks until the pre-op. Gall bladder is being evicted three weeks from tomorrow.

Middlest is migrainey and has an aching back. We are hoping that the second kidney has not decided that it is sinless and about to start throwing stones.

Prayers would be nice, please and thank you.

Saturday, August 05, 2017

Quilt blocks are done.

Not in time to take to the quilt shop, so I had to pay for this month's kits, but that's OK.

Middlest is making southwest chili in the kitchen. I've had a nice evening nap, so I'll be up for awhile, and I'll have a bowl as soon as it's ready.

I'm going to rework the shoulder strap on Justice's vest before I go back to bed, and I'll probably cast on the first black section rather than begin what in human scale would be yards and yards of I-cord to finish the edges on the green one. Although I could pick up all of the little bumps around the perimeter of the vest and work I-cord while at church tomorrow. I-cord definitely qualifies as mindless knitting. Church knitting has to be mindless knitting.

But first I have to fix that shoulder.

Friday, August 04, 2017

In which your intrepid heroine is bushwhacked by sriracha...

...and suffers Sinusmageddon.Who puts sriracha in queso? I can only hope that my sinuses have drawn the worst of the fire, and that I will not awaken at 2:00am in an agony of reflux and regret. My salmon taco, however, was delicious, and they honored my request to leave off the cilantro. I gave the restaurant four stars.

I've finished re-knitting the side panel on Justice's vest, and I'm pleased with it. I've begun weaving in some of the ends, and tomorrow I'll fix the shoulder strap.

The temple, as always, was wonderful.

I should be working on the quilt blocks, but I'm just about out of steam. So I'll content myself with pressing the fabric in preparation for tomorrow morning, take my evening meds, and call it a day.

Thursday, August 03, 2017

I've missed y'all, too!

I was a little too tired after a whopping two days of work to sit down and blog, so this is a catch-up post.

You know that I’ve been fiddling with Cat Bordhi’s “Investments” pattern to see if it would work in doll scale. Essentially a rather large, weirdly shaped gauge swatch. I worked it all the way down to the waist and tried it on Justice to see where it fit and where it didn’t. If knitting at human scale, the underarm increases are absolutely necessary to round out the armscye. And on her, they were exactly how much too wide the vest was at her bust line.

At human scale, eight rows of garter stitch are about right for the side slit that accommodates the tie. At doll scale, half that many will do nicely. I could probably get by with just a yarnover eyelet, but a slit will put less stress on the fabric and maybe prevent a pucker where the tie comes through.

I’m improvising the central decreases down the side panel and making notes so that I can replicate them on the second half of the vest or frog back and try again if the fit still needs to be tweaked.

Today we met Fourthborn’s primary care physician, who seems every bit as great as the other folks we’ve met in the system. We’ve confirmed the final pre-op consultation and determined that Fourthborn can still keep the first counseling session we scheduled (for later that afternoon) during the intake appointment on Monday.

I'm so proud of that kid! She is taking brave steps toward opening up her world. I am retroactively grateful for my (one) anxiety attack last year, because I understand better what life has been like for her as far back as she can remember.

From the PCP’s office, we drove to Middlest’s eye appointment. Prescription for contacts is unchanged, and we have a slightly different one for a pair of backup glasses. We came straight home, I baked the last of the individual pizzas, and I took a nap.

Tomorrow there is only Middlest’s monthly checkup and the running of the non-Ritalin Rx up to the pharmacy, to be followed throughout the day by knitting, sewing the quilt blocks, nap(s), and going to the temple in the evening with Secondborn, 2BDH, and BittyBit to begin the work for some of the people I found last year

Our lives at the moment are a whole lot of hurry up and wait. It's made easier by the kindness and professionalism of the staff and experts we are working with. I was amused to read the badge-holder of one of the nurses. At the bottom were three aspirations/admonitions. The first two positive and forgettable, because the last was "don't be a jerk".

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Today. And a culinary flashback.

Work went well. And it was significantly more restful than yesterday, if approximately equally productive. The day went smoothly enough that I had both the energy and the desire to go to Knit Night, instead of coming home and going straight to bed.

I'm nearly done with the body of the doll vest. I haven't tried it on Justice since I started working my way down the side. I should probably do that.

Because I had a big lunch yesterday when we were between Fourthborn's appointments, and a generous serving for dinner (I ate a third of it and brought the rest home), I ate half of the leftovers for lunch and chose a soup and salad at Panera before the others joined me for Knit Night. And now my stomach is shrieking for a whole lot of something, preferably something full of fat and starch with a side order of protein. I've had a mug of buttermilk and a serving of ginger cookies. My stomach is still not appeased. I think it would prefer that I made a late-night Ben & Jerry run.

Not happening. heading out to the kitchen to find something plausible that will give me neither weird dreams nor reflux. Wish me luck.