A’s Birthday Friday List   7 comments

Today beloved A is celebrating her 52nd birthday.  She thought long and hard about what she wanted her birthday excursion to be.  If you remember, last year we combined our excursions into a real vacation to Charleston, SC.

This year, she set her sights some lower.  After much thought, she decided she wants to go to Bangor, to Harbor Freight, and wander the aisles, picking out some treasures. Then she wants to have supper with her sisters at Uno’s. All I can say is that it is her birthday to do with what she will.  And I thank goodness there is a Christmas Tree Shop right next door to Harbor Freight, so I won’t go out of my mind.  :-)   (Just saying that my birthday excursion will be more fun – I am headed off to Monhegan Island with Mom and company in June.)

So, this morning I will bake her an angel food cake, and then we will head up to the big city for the afternoon.

I’ll have my knitting with me.  And my creative brain, because Christmas Tree Shop always has just the perfect thing if only it were a bit different.

Posted April 24, 2015 by salpal1 in how I plan to spend my day

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Big Day!   18 comments

A starts her vacation today, and tax season is DONE!  Her birthday is next week, and so we always try to take the week off – but this year, she is taking Friday as well, so things will be different around here – no taxes, no sitting on the couch knitting the day away, no hours lost in the craft room.  We are going to rock and roll!

A wants to go to Bangor to begin the research about how much our garage will cost to build.  This was always on our long-term planning list, but this winter moved it up to the top.  :-)  It won’t be attached to the house, it won’t even be particularly close, but it is far easier to dig a path (or tramp one down) than it is to continually shovel out the whole driveway and clear off the cars, move them, then clear up the resulting mess. Every day.  I plan to consult with the plow guy to make sure we build things so that he can do more clearing than we do.  :-)

Anyway, that means making our rounds at all the lumber yards to see what they have for kits and plans, and see if we can start to get a feel for things.  I think we have finally agreed to give up the idea of an apartment attached to this building, at least in the foreseeable future.  As long as we pay attention and make sure we don’t do something to make that hard or impossible or expensive in the future, I think it will be OK.  Now we get to do our work together on sorting out our two visions and how they can work together.  Always fun!

I’ll also get some knitting done as we drive, so that part is fine.  I think we might catch up with sister-in-law L for lunch, if she is free, and then we will wander home.  No craft shopping planned.  That doesn’t mean none will happen, you just never know what I will find at a lumber yard /hardware store to do something with.  :-)

Other chores – fill the bird feeders, empty the squirrel trap, re-bait it (hopeless cause, I know, to eradicate mice and squirrels from around the house, but I can try, right?).  I was going to screen off the phoebe post this weekend, but darned if they aren’t already back!  I spotted those bobbing tails Wednesday morning, and saw one fluttering into that favorite nesting place of theirs.  Birders – can you answer me this – will they find a new nesting place if I shoo them out now and block it off?  They haven’t laid their eggs yet, have they?  A had plans to screen in that area under the deck to let the cats out – I want the phoebes gone before that happens, but not sure I can convince her to wait all summer.  So – are they settled in yet?  Will moving them harm them irreparably if I do it soon?

You might be able to tell – spring is here!  Still some isolated snow piles (the one we have a bet on is still there.  I expect (hope) to lose the “ice out” bet – I chose 5/1, A chose 4/24.  I sure hope she wins, and the snow is gone by then)

I also want to get a new clothes line so I can start hanging clothes out – which means relocating the bird feeder, which has been hanging on the line all winter.  I will put a shepherd’s crook down in that area so the birds don’t freak out that their food is gone.  But the clothes line sure was handy all winter, because I could reel in the feeder.  :-)

It won’t all happen, but it’s good to have plans, right?  :-)

Posted April 17, 2015 by salpal1 in how I plan to spend my day

On top of the world, over the moon, ELATED   14 comments

Doc says I am fine.  Changed the meds, the rash is better, the iron levels are better, the lump is nothing – woot hoot.

JB Atlantic in Ellsworth took every last bit of jewelry I have made on consignment, recommended higher prices than I would dream and wants me to make more.  Good I got all those beads, right? And already strung them.  :-)

They took 4 button hats – the ones with buttons with local ties, but said no more hats until the fall or these sell.  Turn off the hat making machine and engage the jewelry machine.

Life is good tonight.

Posted April 16, 2015 by salpal1 in how it came out

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Thursday April 16   5 comments

The day after the last day of volunteer tax prep!  Still working on reports, but all returns are filed!  Woot woot!  Yesterday was spent at the Bangor Public Library – it was a bit of a crazy day, but we got through it and out on time.  Not sure how.  :-)

Today is the day I go to Ellsworth and see if I can put some things in a shop there.  Trying to get my mind and my stuff ready for this big step.  Yikes.

Lunch with my coworker got canceled, she has some family stuff going on.   Visit to the doctor is happening.  Hope to get some answers. Meeting with my boss is happening. They did call and schedule an interview, I guess they are going by the book, since they have other applicants.  Good for them, but it leaves me in limbo for a bit longer.  I’ll have my interview next week, but need to check in on some logistical stuff for between now and then.

So, I am off to sort out knit things and see how to best present them. EEK.

I’ve been busy!   21 comments

Mom, B, and I hit the bead store for what might (should) be the last time before she closes in a couple of weeks.  Even with the discount, I still managed to spend a bit of money, stocking up on things I know I will use, and getting a few that were not on my list.

I won’t show you everything I bought as I already put it away, but I will show you what I did with it last night and this morning.

I sorted and planned and strung beads on silk for future projects.  Today is a sunny day, so I took it all out on the deck for photos for you.

Here’s a shot of all of it, sparkling in the sunshine.

beads 1

Here’s what’s what:

black silk strung with beads for a red, gray and black bracelet cuff, and with gray and silver beads for a necklace and earrings;

beads 7 earrings, necklace and bracelet

beads 8 on the railing

beads 9 on the railing

(Note the snow still on the ground in this shot.  Jeesh!  It is melting fast, but still with us.)

gold silk strung with green beads to re-do that necklace I messed up, and dark topaz colored beads for a necklace;

beads 6 two necklaces

light purple silk strung with sparkly purple beads and coated black beads for a necklace;

beads 3 necklace

pale sea-foam blue silk strung with beads for a bracelet cuff;

beads 2 bracelet

medium blue silk strung with very sparkly blue beads and clear crystal for a necklace and earrings;

beads 4 earrings and necklace

here’s a combination for you – pale peachy-salmon colored beads for a necklace and green and gray strung for a bracelet cuff.

beads 5 neckalce adn bracelet

So, all planned, strung and put away.  Because I have some other knitting I need to concentrate on before I cast these on.  That blue linen, for instance. I think these will be my reward for working on that.

Besides beads, we had a fun day in town – Mom treated us to lunch at the Olive Garden, and then we quickly hit Joann’s where I ONLY bought buttons for the baby surprise sweater – now at last complete and listed for sale on Etsy – aren’t they cute buttons?  There were some flowers I almost got, but these were too cute to ignore.

surprise button

surprise front

We also went to AC Moore because what mom was looking for could not be found at JoAnn’s.  And for the record, I walked out of that store empty-handed!  Luckily, Mom found what she wanted.

In among all that shopping, we had a fun visit, lots of talking and laughing. I am glad we went, we only have B around for one more month before she head’s back home for the summer.  :-(

I also worked on my KAL knitting, finished the week two section – amazing to me how different the two shawls are – the yarn weight is pretty close to the same, but on the blue-green, I am using a huge needle. Check it out – same number of stitches and pattern repeats:

shawls week two

One is going to be a shawlette, I think, the other will be a warm wrap yourself-up garment!

I also got final photos of the Charleston baby set – buttons and ribbons and ends woven in finished. Also listed on Etsy this morning.  :-)

charleston set 2

Niece C’s birthday present comes along in spurts – I take it every where I go and sometimes get to work on it.  :-)  I have a couple of months to finish that one.

So.  Other news – Well, I haven’t got as much to report as I had hoped.

On the employment front – can’t remember where we left off – but I saw my job posted, and so I called my boss to see if he was interested in me applying.  I would not have bothered if he didn’t think he would review my application.  He said he was, but I should know the salary was $25,000 less than what I was making.  I said I expected it would be less, as it was my actual job description, not everything I was doing that was “extra”.  But that seemed a bit much, and I said I could not do it for that.  I gave him a  number that is MY bottom figure, and he said to apply.  So I did.

I have heard nothing from him or the big boss, but I did see them all last week, just no time to talk.  Everyone was friendly.  And the HR person told me “that salary issue is all worked out.”

But it isn’t until someone talks to me and we come to an agreement, right?

Anyway, I said in my application that I was available after 5/1. I am interested to know whether that is when I go back to the office. Knowing these guys who have crazy schedules, they will call me on 4/30 to see what time I will be in.

I think I promised you medical news as well.  Still no report on anything there, either.  I went to the doc with a list, which included sore joints, lumps and rashes and the hope that I could slow down on iron supplements. Sore joints:  she recommended heat for the shoulder, ice for the foot, and a support strap for the elbow.  Rash got a ridiculously expensive strong cream.  Iron review got a blood draw, and the lump?  The lump got me an ultrasound.  That is what I thought I would hear about by now, but all I have heard back on is the iron – which apparently requires further review. The joints all feel better. The rash is changing, hard to tell if that is good or bad.  I have an appointment on Thursday, so I should know more after that.  I might call them Tuesday when I am home, but I might not, too. If I don’t know better, then it is nothing serious, right?

Thursday is a big day – aside from the doctor, I am having lunch with a coworker friend – the one who got all the necklaces in January.  She and I have fun together, and never get to see each other now that I am not in the office. AND I am taking some of my knitted things into a shop in Ellsworth that is starting to carry fiber related things on consignment.  I don’t know if my things are a fit for them, but I do know how to find out.  Be brave and carry them in there.  I was in one day last week to see a potter’s work and saw the new section, so I spoke to the woman at the counter.  She isn’t the decision maker on this stuff, but recommended I come in on Thursday.  I am nervous but excited.  Can’t know how it will do until I try, right?  I think they will like the things with local flavor more than the things with commercial fiber and trimmings, but I am OK with that.  I have a few such things in the pile of completed items.  :-)  Tuesday I will have to type up an inventory sheet with prices so I know what I have and where I put it.  What a great chore to have!

So – that is what I have been up to and thinking about these last several days, between doing tax returns.  How have you been?

last Friday of tax season!   13 comments

This season seems really long, could it be the weather? Today I am filling in at the Edith Dyer Library , if you are in the neighborhood, come on down and say hello.  :-)

This week was LOOOONG, I did taxes 4 days.  Yesterday was the last day at the old office, it was hectic but we made it fun – had lunch brought it, did over thirty tax returns.  Whew!

So the real fun is tomorrow – Mom is coming over, we are heading to Bangor to pick up niece B at college – to go back to the bead store.  Any excuse!  B likes to make earrings, Mom needs buttons, so we will probably go to JoAnn’s as well to see what we can find.  Then lunch, and who knows what shopping we will do after that?

Nothing much else new right now – that’s what happens when I do taxes all week.  But next week we are through, and then things can get back to normal, and I might have things to share on the employment front.  Also the medical.  Some good some bad, or at least, not good.  More later.

Here’s what’s not new – SNOW.  Three days this week the school delays crawled along the bottom of the TV. Today is an icy mix.  But we might get a gorgeous weekend, who knows?

I WANT MY DAFFODILS!

Easter Sunday and a funny (knitting) story   10 comments

Today we got a reasonably early start – Sister-in-law L came over and we headed off to Mom’s for a festive lunch.  Brother and sister C were both there, with their significant others.  Brother N and his family did not make it, nor did niece B, but we had a nice group for the meal. Little niece E was in rare form, wriggling and chatting, but reasonably well-behaved.  She told us a story about her plan to see if her parents hid the eggs or the Easter Bunny did.  She and her mom dyed eggs, and when they were done, put them in the fridge. In the morning, they were gone from the fridge, and hidden around the house.  She did NOT think the Easter Bunny had found them in the fridge and hidden them.  Because the house is always locked, so how would he get in?(No chimney, I suggested that.)

While we were eating, my sister told us that the other evening, she used some leftover fingering weight yarn to knit up a quick cuff on her size 1 DPNs.  She left her knitting on the table when she went to bed.  In the morning, E saw it and thought I was there, because of the tiny knitting.  My sister was chuckling. “She is so used to me knitting these big chunky things!”  We were both impressed that this kid NOTICED what we knit, that she had profiled me as far as knitting goes.

They told me they have a huge bead store in Portland.  I will check it out, but that is 2.5 hours away….  Not going there every week, right?

We came home mid-afternoon so L could continue her trip and get home before dark, and so we could settle down and watch basketball.  Go UCONN! (Not sure we will actually watch the UCONN game, as it is on so late – but we will record it and see it tomorrow before the boys final game.  Meanwhile, we watch Notre Dame and So Carolina battle it out.)

Before the game began, I was able to get a few photos of things I am working on these days – two shawls for the lace leaf knit along –

The first in a blue-green boucle from Done Roving Farm in Charlotte (many years ago) on large needles – it is quite a bit bigger than the second, which is knit on smaller needles with smaller yarn – a purple variegated yarn from One Lupine in Bangor.

blue-green shawl week one

shawl week one

And here is a shot of the Charleston baby sweater  all done – buttons on, blocked and dried.  :-)  The hat is done as well, but it was too dark for a photo when I got the ribbon on it and the bow tied.  Look forward to that photo someday in the future.

charleston sweater complete

Other projects progress slowly but do progress, which is all good.  :-)

Busy week this week – 4 tax days, and the one day off, I have an 8 am doctor’s appointment.  But then I only have two tax days left after that, and we are done.  One thing about tax season – it does not wind down – it is like jumping off a cliff or something – you go full tilt, full speed ahead, then stop as on a dime, and that is it for another year.

Oh, and for all of you posting lovely shots of your daffodils, I thought you might like to see a shot of my yard that I took this weekend.  And you should know that the “S” word is in the forecast for the whole 5 days they will talk about.  So we are still getting that stuff at least two days a week.  If this keeps up all summer, I may go mad.  Anyway, this week is the first we have been able to see a sign of this bench – at least two feet of snow has melted, but you can see there is a long way to go before we get a flower of any sort.

bench in spring

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