Friday, August 31, 2018

Behind the Scenes

Dearest Reader,
It's true that I have been blogging less often these days and I feel the need to explain.

As with so much of social media, we try to promote only the positive aspects of our lives, because really who wants to whine and complain online?

But alas, things have slowly declined in our house and I find myself cocooning in my room, avoiding everything else, as a form of self preservation.
As you may know, my darling husband Dave has been enduring Parkinson's disease for 25+ years, and it has progressed rapidly of late. He has been affected more mentally, rather than physically, to the point where he is paranoid, psychotic, and delusional. This is not uncommon with advanced PD, which is not much consolation.
He is often frantic with these imagined images and angry that no one else agrees with him that there are bad guys after him. He calls the police often to rid our home of the bad guys, mostly during the middle of the night.

There are lots of drugs involved in our life, some work and some make it worse. It's a daily challenge. I am lucky to have a great bunch of friends and my darling sister to unload all this stuff on. But I never felt I should blog about it. Until now.
Back in 2004 when I began blogging, I talked about all the minutiae in my days and it was fun and sometimes humorous. I'd love to get back to that tone, here.
Perhaps a solution is right around the corner and we must exercise patience.

So... that's the short version of the story, leaving out the horrid details.
I work on keeping Dave calm and well medicated, and staying peaceful in between bouts of delusional behaviour.
So that's where I am these days, in my room, knitting and keeping watch .

Thanks for you constancy over all these years.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

New Knits #2

 A tunic for a taller figure...this one measures 28 inches long and 49 inches at the bust and hip. But those measurements are taken lying flat. When the garment is worn, there is considerable  draping. 
Here it is displayed on my petit mannequin, so your imagination is required.
I have been concentrating on designs that would flatter real women and this one does just that. Vertical stitches, diagonal  striping and cap shoulders add to the slimming illusion.
The yarns are delicious merino, Malabrigo Rios, Rowan ExtraFine Merino DK and are super soft and springy.
I am focusing on using only the most yummy yarns these days for you and me, to really enjoy the process of creating.
Offered for $100 with free shipping. Email me at

Thursday, August 23, 2018

GELLI art fun

 I've  figured  out how to get my camera images onto the blog. An SD micro chip. Duh! Easy peasy. So now I am back to blog heaven.
Recently  I saw a Jane Davies video on decorating envelopes and immediately  had to try it. It all happens so quickly and looks so kool, imho.Turns out I had a bunch of envelopes and lots of scraps to use. Afterwards i decorated a few with stamps . I will be giving these two to our KW birthday girls today, along with the knitted hearts from yesterday .

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Learning the new tablet

It's been a few weeks since I switched from my big old laptop to my new Samsung galaxy E tablet and I have been trying to find easy ways to blog from it. Not so easy. But i will persist. Mostly i have wanted a photo editing program which will fix my photos made directly  from the tablet  and make them look as good as my camera does. Still working on that.
In the meantime, here's  what is going on with me. Since it is so hot, I have been staying in my room, just knitting. It's like enduring a cold winter up north, same behavior. But soon it will be autumn and I'll feel more inclined to enjoy the garden.
This week has been filled with doctor's  visits for me (totally healthy) and the six month check up for the pugs. I survived that ordeal. Just barely.
The little knitted hearts above are for a couple of birthday gals in the Knitwits, for which we are having a party on Thursday. I made up the design. They are little purses or bags to, and I hope they will be enjoyed. It's difficult to buy or make gifts for 80 year old girls, knowing they have everything and more and are always trying to downsize. The older I get the more I realize that I have everything too and need more emptiness in my closets and drawers. That's why  we KWs knit for charity, and each other.
So now that I have written and uploaded an edited photo directly I think I will blog more often now. Yay!!!

Monday, August 13, 2018

Garden August 2018

 The new garden is a mix of good and bad news. I have been very happy about parts and really disappointed with others. Never have I had so many marigolds in bloom, so that is a victory. Lots of wonderful basil to eat and give away, over and over. The rain has been frequent which is great of course and Dave has watered when necessary and also did a bunch of weeding. The soil in the flower bed was really really weedy and yet once we got rid of them, it does look pretty darn good. But the heat has been horrific. The only time it is pleasant is early morning. 

 The white bed is behaving nicely with thick growth. Basil, fennel and pineapple sage is that glob at the end. It gets just the right amount of sun, and is thriving.

 All the zinnias are blooming continually. I could just have zinnias and basil and feel successful. Many of these were put in late, and no matter. They just love this bed. I've planted cut and come again varieties, but so far haven't cut any. 

 I planted basil in stages, and these are the youngest. Lettuce leaf is the variety and the leaves are huge compared to plain old sweet basil. Some of the other groups have started blooming and getting woody, so I am grateful to have baby plants just under way.

 Black eyed Susan, the weed variety. Can't complain but these aren't what I wanted when I bought the plant. Still, they are vigorous. 
 And then there is the veggie garden... Gardening is a learning process and I learned that these beds are pretty much in the shade much of the day. The eastern most beds get good sun, so the peppers, sweet potatoes (in bloom) and tomatoes are doing well but the squash is not so great. The zucchini and yellow squash got attacked with vine borer early and only produced a few fruit before it was destroyed.


 We do have lots of tomatoes, still green this late in the season, but a few ripe ones have been picked and eaten, and were worth the wait. Just found my first tomato horn worm this morning and he was HUGE. Hate those buggers. We've had lots of windy storms lately and the vines get blown about since they weren't tied to the posts. No damage was done, since they are not the indeterminate varieties.

I am happy about the butternut squash! Three are forming so far and lots of blossoms are on the vines.

 Lots of vines, pumpkin, cantaloupe, butternut and kuri squash. Who knows what is under all those leaves? I just today discovered two cantaloupe, altho they might be pumpkin.

The beets are going great and I have pulled three to cook, but haven't done so yet. One of these is a yellow variety. Never tasted one of those. I'm waiting till it gets bigger.
The veggie beds had better soil than the flower beds, so no weeds at all. It was mushroom compost and I have more waiting to put onto the flowers when they are over. No weeds makes a big difference as you might imagine. So with this year's experiments I have learned what works where and next season I will use the farther veggie beds for more flowers and put the veggies in the full sun of the flower bed. I've learned to be flexible.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Cactus Lily

Cactus Lily... good name? I loved making this cardivest. All merino wools, with several hand dyed yarns. Merino is the best wool for non-itchiness.
The multi-colors in this knit make a statement and would be fun to wear in Spring as well as during the colder months when flowers and green have disappeared.

Length is almost 27" from neck to hem.

 Bust is 42" and hip is 48"

Offered for $100 including shipping. Email me.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

New Design

My new design harkens back to the Mitered Diamond jackets which I began making in 2013. I made and sold 18 versions and I always thought about making one that would work as a vest. This model leaves off the sleeves and the collar. Knit from a combo of Taiyo silk/cotton and two merino wools. Sized to fit a taller figure, and with a looser fit than my other jackets. Bust/hip measurement is 54" so I would say a good roomy fit for a 44-48" bust. Length is 30". Offered for $75 plus shipping to the US. Email me.
 This version is a little looser and longer in the back, which makes it nicer, imho, when sliding into a car, or walking on a cold morning. It may only be August, but here in TN school has started and I am knitting like it is midwinter. For once I designed a knit for a taller (than me) woman.  Pictured here before I sewed on the buttons and buried all the loose ends.
Betty W. is modeling it for me, and she is about 5'10". We both are Knitwits and Thursday is our regular meeting day. She was just the person who could show me how this looks in real life. She wants me to tell you that she wishes she hadn't worn that checked shirt. I gave her no warning that she would be modeling.

 Betty on he left and Diane J on the right.