Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Just a nice normal day

It seems I hadn't downloaded all my picture taking devices yesterday.  This is a fun picture of Eldest Daughter meeting Charlie.  She prudently put up her hood since she was wearing earrings!

It rained hard last night.  This morning Ngaire and I took a walk hoping the rain was over with.  And it was!  She behaved very well, but then again, we didn't meet any people or dogs.  Her backpack pocket is open because I suddenly thought she could darned well carry her own bag of poop!  LOL

The cold air was nice and refreshing....in a damp sort of way.  :-)  There was a large flock of robins flitting and pipping all around the pond.  They like the berries (pears?) in the Bradford Pear trees.

As we came around the pond I realized that we have almost full disclosure of the house now.  Just a few weeks ago it was almost completely hidden by the trees.

We are having our last push to get all the t-shirt quilts done for Christmas.   Yesterday I worked all day on two big quilt tops that will be front and back of the same quilt.  It's going to be a heavy quilt!  It was nice and warm out.  Each warm day I'm able to work with the windows open I wonder if it's going to be the last one.  Hmmmmm.

And this morning I got them done.  OD green sashing with matching camo borders.  Lots of guns and beer on these t-shirts.  I don't get most of the other references on the shirts either, but it's quite a collection and nice and colorful.  Julianne says the family are good customers and I hope they like my efforts.  

This afternoon I celebrated by raking leaves.  The Canada geese and mallard ducks were no where to be seen, but the mergansers were toodling back and forth across the pond.  They are diving ducks and keep disappearing suddenly then popping up in unexpected places.  Amusing to watch.

It was quite breezy too and I spent some time taking pictures of the wavy reflections in the pond.  (Isn't it nice I'm so easily amused.)

I took videos too.  You can hear the background noise of the wind and the distant traffic on the interstate.  I'm not sure if it's on this video but birds were singing, my dogs were barking at invisible people and school buses, and a neighbor was using his chain saw.  Just a nice normal day.  :-)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Giving thanks

Thanksgiving has come and gone.  Visitors have come and gone.  My cold and cough is hanging on, but I guess you can't have everything.  :-)

We are thankful the Sailor Son was able to come down from Virginia with the Grands for a day and night. Also thankful the Eldest Daughter (ED), the Led Zepplin Fan (LZF) and their dog were here for three days.  ED and LZF also come with residual cat hair on all their belongings so of course my allergies kicked in as well.  I'm not too sure I can be thankful for that.  :-)  And the leaf mold outside hasn't been helping either. 

Stardust has had her seven month photo session.  I'm sure she is thankful to have such a doting mommy and daddy.  We are thankful that MD and Poyla opened their house to The Tramp a week ago when he had to make a sudden trip up to New Jersey for a funeral.  The Tramp says she is the happiest, laughingest baby.  Of course I wish I could have been there.

I am fortunate and very thankful to own several excellent cameras.  It's really shameful I don't take better photos!  Most of my Thanksgiving pictures are fuzzy due to some setting on the camera I didn't realize I had set.  But I'm thankful to have the pictures anyway!  We had a very tasty gluten-free turkey-dinner-with-all-the-trimmings and I'm truly thankful for all the wonderful folks who share their gluten-free recipes.

The Grands had fun decorating a gingerbread house with their aunt.  Grand #1 just couldn't understand why we wouldn't let him eat the house when it was all done. 

They had fun trying on auntie's glasses.  I'm not thankful that Grand #2 has inherited the family allergies.  As the day progressed his nose became completely stuffed and he was wheezing badly.  I guess he is allergic to our dogs and any cat dander carried by ED and LZF.  He was amazingly cheerful even so!  After they got back to Virginia he ended up in the hospital for treatment.  I'm thankful to report he now has an inhaler and is doing much better.  I remember scary nights in the hospital emergency with Middle Daughter when she was that age and am very thankful for all the medications that make a normal life possible for those of us with asthma and allergies.

ED was born on Thanksgiving Day 34 years ago and this year her birthday fell on the holiday again.  I made her a "Church Ladies Apron." 

Grand #1's birthday was a few weeks ago.  The Tramp vetoed all my birthday gift suggestions and picked out a simple set of police vehicles saying that's what he would have liked if he was four years old.  I'm sorry I wasn't taking a video at this moment as Grand #1 is proclaiming, "This is AWESOME!"   (Always listen to your Tramp!)

The Tramp had some loving time with the dogs.  I assume they are thankful to be living with us.  :-)

LZF and The Tramp spent Friday afternoon putting up the Christmas lights.  We were thankful for his help.

It was a lovely warm day (thankfully!) and the dogs helped from the front stoop.

We are thankful for LED bulbs, so we can afford to go a bit crazy. This year we are finally 100% LED.  We haven't quite caught up with the Griswolds though.  :-)  We took the tripods and cameras out for some experimental night-time photography.   

While the dogs slept away the evenings....

LZF and MD took over my cutting table....

and I actually got a bit of sewing done.  New camera strap covers for ED and I, and a bag for her flash.

 ED and LZF were thankful I was able to patch all the ripping seams on Patrick's favorite shirt.  :-)

A vintage zigzagger for my 301 arrived in the mail, thanks to The Tramp. 

And I'm thankful to have won this package of goodies from Anne Sutton of Bunny Hill Designs and Kristyne of Pretty By Hand.  Woot!

This morning we watched from the front door as LZF packed the car.

Had a last cup of tea and coffee and watched the geese, ducks and heron on the pond.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Hack, sneeze, cough, sniff, wheeze, moan, repeat.

On Friday I came down with the most awful cold.  Well all colds are awful aren't they.  The only thing special about this one is that I have it.  Ugh.

So what do you do but stay indoors and sleep sew.  Deadlines are good.  I had two t-shirt quilts to finish.  Kept me out of bed.  :-)  They are both bright and cheerful too.

Charlie and the dogs have been doing their best to keep my spirits up.  Clearly I was at least somewhat amused since I stirred myself to find the camera.  We are playing a serious game of dunk the toy.  The water soluble dye in the green and blue wood beads is coloring the water.

It's a messy job but somebody has to do it.

Oops.  We've dropped the toy and are now trying to bathe in the green water.   Aren't you green enough Charlie?

Oh ho!  You've been watching me!


Charlie doesn't have the wild coloring some other parrots have but there is a lot going on in his feathers.  It's always interesting what the camera sees.  If you click on the photos you might see more detail.

Hello handsome.

Yes you.

This afternoon I went out to deliver the t-shirt quilts and to get some fresh air on this lovely warm November day.  I puttered across town doing small errands that didn't require me to think, including a long long overdue trip through the car wash.  I had the same magnets on my car for about three years.  Fair warning....this is what happens if you never take them off!  (or get your car washed)  I've picked off what I can, now I have to figure out what to do about the rest.  It's an old car with plenty of "character marks" on the paint so I can't get too concerned about it.

We had a visitor on the front stoop when I got home.  I set the camera to video and put it down on the railing.  The mantis slowly advanced on the camera and climbed right up on it!  Too bad the video is mostly out of focus.

The dogs never noticed him/her (on the right).  They were too busy barking at the UPS truck.  :-)

But since discretion is the better part of valor, Mr./Ms. Mantis decided to climb out of the way up the side of the house.