Another weekend has come and gone

I do wish they would hang around longer.  🙂

It was mostly a nice one, as weekends go.

A and I ventured out despite the nasty weather forecast to visit her last aunt at a nursing home in Augusta.  It was our first time there, and bittersweet.

The staff seems nice, and fun and attentive, but there were so many people just parked in their wheelchairs… and the smell when we walked in? Ugh.

Aunt N didn’t have a clue who we were, but she was so glad to have visitors.  We chatted endlessly about the same three things “Is it nice out, dear?”  “What’s the date to day?  October 27? Almost November!” “We used to skate all winter long.  They flooded the athletic field at the high school. My parents gave us memberships each Christmas so we could skate as much as we wanted.  We loved to skate.  We were all quite good.  My parents would get us skates when we were good enough, it was a real treat to get new skates.”

We took her to a quieter room and broke out the coloring books and crayons. We used to bring them with us to visit her sister, A’s mom, when she was in the memory unit.  Where A’s Mom would color with us for hours, Aunt N was having none of it.  She looked very confused at the thought and finally said her hands were too cold today.  We checked, they were warm and toasty.  So, no coloring.  She seemed unhappy to be in the quieter room, so we went back to the crowded hallway. After an hour or so, we left so she could have her regular lunch and schedule back.  We are pretty sure she had no clue that we left.

She did still show a glimmer of herself, as we were approached by a wandering woman in a wheelchair who told us “MOVE!”, Aunt N said “I think she just does it for the A-T-T-E-N-T-I-O-N, dear.  In fact, I am sure of it.”

So while we were so sad to see her there in that stage of life, we were very glad we went, and that she is still herself, she is still a fun loving woman with a twinkle in her eye.  We know she was told that her three remaining siblings died this year, but we could also tell that she did not remember that.  When she spoke of them, it was about times long past.  And now that the ice is broken, I think A will stop by there when she is traveling through Augusta, as she used to pop in to visit her at her house when she was in the area. Aunt N is the last of 10, and was the one who was closest to A’s mom.  When we lose her, it will be a very hard day for A.

After we left there, we also had lunch, at Red Robin in Augusta, before heading home.  We had planned to stop at the big grocery store on the way home, but the weather was being nasty by then: snow, sleet, and rain, depending on how high the hill was, so we just went to the usual smaller grocery store in Bucksport.  I got lots of sock knitting done before we got home, finished the heel and started up the leg.

Once home, we puttered a bit and settled down to watch a little TV while I knit.  That’s pretty much how Sunday went, too.  I did work on my sewing in the craft room – the skirt just needs a hem!  I think it will be too short for me, but it fits – yippee!  That means I can make more from this pattern.  It is bias cut, and I want to make it longer – help – geometry!  How wide does the fabric have to be to get the triangle wide enough for the skirt and long enough for the length? And how many yards do I need?  Heavens.  On the dress, I didn’t make much headway, but I did get started making my bias tape – I cut up a fat quarter, and sewed all the strips together.  It made a huge length!  I am going to love using this stuff.  🙂 It just needs ironing.  I need to insert the sleeves on the dress and see what happens then.  I think they will be too snug, but that’s what this is all about, getting the pattern just right.

I did lots of knitting, too –

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This is J’s scarf – finished the first skein, which is the smaller of the two.  It is just about 30 inches long now, so I think it will be long enough when done.  He said he wanted a long one. I will use all the yarn and hope it is long enough.  This yarn is a dream to use, I am loving it!  It looks and feels soft as velvet!  It is blue-faced Leicester and silk blend.  I have another braid of the same blend in my stash (different color) and am really looking forward to making something lovely with it.

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My Durrow square looks like all the other squares did at this point – but it is growing, I did several rows on it this weekend. I am back in love with this project.

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And Dangling Conversation is growing like a weed – it is going to be a large shawl when done, because I am not stopping until I am pretty well out of yarn – unless I decide to do a matching hat and mitts. I would only do that if the shawl grew way too big.  Which it might.  But I love the way the colors are playing and the little bits of lace between the color changes looks so nice!  Not sure what I will do with this one, so NOT my colors.  I might see if my sister wants it, she looks prettier in these colors than I do.

That was my weekend!

 

Really?

Sunday I emailed my boss to ask for time off Thursday to attend A’s aunt’s service.

Monday permission was granted.

Wednesday I emailed to remind her I would be out on Thursday.

This response came back from her.

“Enjoy!”

Words fail me.

Not Friday

But I am off today, it just made sense.

It started with an 11 o’clock doctor’s appointment in Bangor. I could work around that, not an issue.

But then we got word that one of A’s favorite aunts passed away. Wake this afternoon in Portland. That meant leave work at 10 for the MD, be gone the rest of the day.

Since I had some errands to do, I just took the whole day.

So my list today is BORING!

Vote.

Return damaged pellet bags.

Doctor visit.

Lunch.

Meet A in Bangor, ride to Portland.

Knit on ride.

Aunt Betty’s wake.

Ride back to Bangor, knitting all the way.

Get my car, drive home.

The end.

See how I snuck knitting in?

Productive in pajamas!

This has been such a nice weekend!

Friday I got a lot done, almost the whole list and never did get dressed for public viewing. 😉

Because A had to go to work we were up at our normal time. By 9 o’clock the bathrooms were clean, laundry was washing and drying, breakfast was eaten and cleaned up, the bed was stripped and knitting was happening.

I finished the knitting on Down the Road and Back Again. Sent several photos of it posing with various buttons so the future owner could choose one. This is the one she chose. She will be home again next week, and so can tell me exactly where she would like it. 😉. I think it is a good choice!

Then I started spinning. This is Deere Season colorway by Purple Fleece, on a base of merino, bamboo and nylon. I am thinking socks, and it is spinning nice and thin for me. It feels a lot like silk as it slips through my fingers. 😊

I also got up into the craft room and cut out the dress and skirt. No photos yet, but they will happen eventually.

Because I finished the shawl, I had to cast something new on this weekend. I was torn. Durrow languishes, ready for the 5th square to be cast on. I have newly spun yarn that wants to join some scraps and be a shawl. And I have yarn I spun this summer that wants to be a scarf for step brother J. I really couldn’t decide.

So I did it all.

and worked on them all on Saturday.

Sunday was about cooking. I had some butternut squash a friend gave us, so I tried a new soup recipe.

And then I made smashed potatoes ( look it up if you don’t know about them, yummy!) and pork chops for supper, using another new recipe.

So I was in the kitchen all day but it was worth the effort. I’ll have soup for lunch all week. And I made enough pork chops for another dinner. 😉

I feel like I was pretty productive, even the day I was in jammies all day.

Of course I did no yard work. Carrots are still in the ground, garlic is not. Someday…

Ye ha! Friday off!

It really has been a crazy couple of weeks at work, but eventually it had to mean a day off – yea! I worked enough hours this week that I am getting Friday off with only an hour or two of vacation time. I can live with that!

So that means you get one of my Friday lists!

There are household chores on it, of course. Last weekend A did them all, so I will be making it up to her this weekend.

There is knitting – bound and determined to finish the Down the Road and Back Again shawl.

And sewing- I started laying out the fabric for a simple dress a couple of weeks ago, and haven’t been able to get back to it. I’d like to finish laying it out and cutting it out.

Spinning. The fiber is prepped. The bobbins are empty. It is time to start it.

Someone needs to start putting the gardens to bed, and planting the garlic. I guess that will be me. But maybe not on Friday.

Another thing I am going to do is stay in bed until 6 am, at the earliest. I am exhausted.

What are you doing to celebrate Friday?

It’s been so long

I haven’t written in so long that I don’t think I will even try to catch you up.

On the whole life has been boring, when it comes to blogging.  Work is stressful and overwhelming at times, but not unmanageable, given enough time.  Home is fine and restorative,as always.

And fall is upon us!

The colors were so muted for such a long time, then we had a gray week and they all popped out.

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The morning glories are struggling to bloom now, the sun is so low they are in shade most of the day. But late in the afternoon, the sun makes it past the house and they seem to glow.

I have been making lots of apple crisp the past few weeks, which I love, and it is so easy to make, yum!

Still need to do the fall yard work – dig up the carrots and plant the garlic, spread a little cow manure and straw about… but the cosmos and zinnias are still blooming, so I can’t bother them, can I?

There was ice on the windshield this morning.  Not frost, but real ice, from the heavy dew and very cold temps.  So this fall is clearly not going to last, and winter will be here before we know it.

So, we ordered our pellets for the winter – 4 tons.  With help from our BIL, we loaded two tons into the cellar yesterday, and will work on them each weekend until they are done.  Left to our own devices, we do about a ton a day, but with help, we were able to double that.  We both notice that this time of year, a bag of pellets seems so heavy (40 pounds) but by spring we think nothing of hauling a couple of bags up the stairs to fill the stove.

I have been knitting and spinning – knitting very focused on two things – the Down the Road and Back Again shawl, which SHOULD get finished this week, and is already sold!  Yea!

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And of course, socks. One of the things going on at work this time of year is health fairs.  I knit a lot at them, in between chatting with people about the organization.  One of them was so crowded (free flu shots!) that no one could move, and so I sat knitting and chatting with people – it turns out the knitting was drawing folks to the table. I might start keeping on knitting when people approach, instead of tucking it away.  So I finished one sock and have made a good start on the second.

Spinning has also been happening –

I made this yarn which will join some scraps and leftovers to become a shawl.  It is a two ply, one ply is Tasman Comeback, the other ply is Finn.

Then this yarn flew off the wheel!  It will likely be a hat, as there isn’t much yardage. It’s a bulky 4 ply, in Falkland.

Next up is some yarn that I hope will be for some socks – I haven’t spun for socks in quite a while. This is merino, bamboo, and nylon.

One last photo – leaving Whorls and Purls on Saturday, I looked up and thought that it looked like someone had floated a piece of roving across the sky.

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That’s it from around these parts – I hope you have been having a good month so far! What does fall look like in your part of the world?

Important public service message

In these times it is more critical than ever that every eligible person in this country votes, but that is not enough.

As my cousin said three years ago, “it is no longer enough to just vote. We have to do more.”

We have to actively participate in our democracy. We have to volunteer to move the candidates or issues we believe in forward. We have to attend meetings, make calls, knock on doors, educate our fellow Americans.

We have to make sure that the people running our states and our country reflect the values and morals of the majority of us.

I took his words to heart, and volunteer at the local political office of my choice. I hope you will as well, and keep volunteering after the election. This is too important to not get correct.