Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Pre-Christmas (is this a word?)

I hate all the mad rush about Christmas.  It gets my anxiety going.  I can't do shopping at the mall.  Too many people and everyone in such a hurry.  I usually order things online.  I decided to make a few gifts this year.  So far I've knitted one pair of socks and started another pair.  I'm thinking mittens and also hats.  My mom would like a flannel nightgown so that's on my to do list.

A couple weeks ago Ralph told me that he would like for us to keep family traditions going.  When he was little we went to Phil's mom's house for Christmas Eve dinner and Christmas Day we spent at my parents house when they were still in Pittsburgh.  After they moved, we started going to Phil's brother's house Christmas Day.  Phil's mom changed her Christmas dinner to the week before so we won't all be so rushed.  Phil and I talked it over and we'll start having Christmas Eve dinner at our house.  I've already told Joe and he's planning to come over with the girls.  Christmas Day we'll spend at Dave and MaryAnn's while Ralph's family will be at his in-laws.  Joe will be at home with the girls Christmas Day.  My parents will be up this year which will be nice.

This year marks the fifth year since my cancer diagnosis.  That first Christmas spent in the hospital was horrendous.  I'm so thankful for how far I've come since then!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

#makeitbetter #sandycraftalong

I came across a blog post about a craft-along for the victims of Hurricane Sandy.
#makeitbetter #sandycraftalong

I decided to make a hat and mittens.  I started a pair of adult sized mittens for a man.  I could have made a pair for a woman but thought there might be a homeless man who needs them, too.  The pattern I'm using it called Mittens for All by Jodi Lewanda for Red Heart Yarn.  I don't have any Red Heart Yarn so I'm using 100% Peruvian wool yarn from my stash.  It's by Cascade Yarns called Cascade 220.  The yarn is nice to work with and super warm.  I didn't have size 4 double pointed needles so I went up a size and am using sizes 5 and 6.  The measurements are turning out true to the pattern but I have to say they still look huge to me.  They're 12 inches from cuff ribbing to the fingertips.

I'm working on the mate to it now.  Update Nov 21:  After finishing the second mitten I sent them through the mail to NY.  Hopefully they've been passed out to a needy person. 
I started and finished a second pair of mittens for Lilly this time in a gorgeous pink angora yarn.  While digging through my knitting needle bag (monstrously large) I managed to find size 4 double pointed needles.  Go figure.
I started a pair of socks on Monday.  I'm about 3/4 through the first sock.  It's looking pretty good.  I'm using A Classic Sock pattern by Nancy Bush.  Size 2 needles are tiny and I'm really hoping I'll be able to finish these before losing my mind.  I'm trying to make a few knitted gifts for Christmas.  I have a month.  Wish me luck.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Day After

I voted in the election yesterday and then stayed up watching Fox News until way early this morning so I could find out the election results.  I was not happy.  This morning I am still not happy.  Tomorrow, the next day and three years from now I will not be happy.  The majority of Americans voted for the person who would continue to hand them a welfare check or some form of government handout that comes from money borrowed from China.  $16 trillion dollars in debt and it just goes up but as long as "those people" don't have to repay the debt they just don't care.

I worry about my parents.  They are both retired but my dad has to work to pay bills.  Retirement and social security checks don't pay bills.

I worry about my husband's job.  He works in the financial market.  Our 401(k) took a nose dive in 2008 when Obama was elected.  It was just starting to recover.  This morning stock markets fell dramatically.  My husband works very hard for his paycheck.  He goes in to work at 7 a.m. and sometimes isn't home until well after 7 p.m.  There have been times he's worked 24 hours straight for days at a time sometimes having to sleep on the floor at work.  This is true.

Then there's my son.  He works as an electrician in the mining industry building equipment that is used for miners here in the U.S. and also outside the country.  His job depends on coal.  Obama is not a friend of coal miners.  He's said time and time again that he'll bankrupt the coal industry.  What kind of President doesn't want to see people work to provide for their families?

I am worried about the days ahead.  The next four years will be the same as the past four with our government getting larger, our Constitutional rights being taken away and more and more people struggling to survive.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day

No, I don't plan to discuss how people vote or why they choose which candidate.  That's a personal decision kind of like your relationship with God.  I picked the title because that's what we call this day here in the U.S.A.

Last week I finished up on the super cute Heart Party Shrug I was knitting for Jassmine.  I used a Merino and Mohair yarn called Princess in a lovely lilac shade.  It fit beautifully and best of all, she loved it!

After dance class on Friday Jass wanted to come home with me.  Dixie stayed home.  Saturday morning Jass and I went to see Lilly; from there we went to the Pittsburgh Children's Museum.  We had a great time even though it was so cold outside.  The girls enjoyed all the activities at the museum.  Jass stayed overnight with Lilly so they could go trick or treating together.  Sunday morning we all met at Cracker Barrel for breakfast.

With Jass gone overnight I decided to start a pair of mittens for Lilly.  I finished them yesterday.  I used two strands of yarn for extra warmth.  The yarn is Alpaca from Peru in a color called Hyacinth.  The girls love their purples.  I plan to make a couple more pairs for Lilly and also for Jass and Dixie.