Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Rest of the Story ~

After we left the house in Grayslake, we spent another week with our oldest daughter and her family. We  also enjoyed a nice lunch with Kathy B., a blogging friend, and her husband. It was very fun to meet them both, and it was a most enjoyable afternoon. (You may have seen a similar photo on her blog, thanks to both of our husbands.)

In between helping Jill with household chores and playing with the grand kids, we managed to celebrate Sophia's seventh birthday----twice!  Once with Grandma and Grandpa T.

On her "real" birthday, the 19th, we had cake with a rainbow and purple and pink roses as requested.  And Mom made "rainbow jello".

See that black plate?  It was really really slippery, and there was a near catastrophe when we removed the plastic to place it on the cake stand.  Oma and Mom made a quick catch when it tried to get away!

Rainbow jello takes lots of time and patience to make, but smaller dishes help hurry the process along.

Sophia likes her Little House shawl, and it seems to fit very well.  We also gave her some Little House on the Prairie books to go with it.  This was the first time we've had a chance to celebrate a birthday with any of our Chicago grand children, and it was lots of fun!

Their backyard is visited by all sorts of critters.  This chipmunk had just polished of a choice cherry tomato.

The orange cat whose name is Charlie visits regularly and enjoys being petted. Daniel drops everything when Charlie arrives.  They are good friends.

And since we've left for home, the family had adopted four chickens.  Last year they came home from the labor Day weekend family camp with a guinea pig named Amy, and this year with four chickens.  It's your guess what they'll bring home next year!  Maybe a horse?  Or ?

Friday, September 12, 2014

Down to the Wire! And Still on My Needles~~~ (Updated)

Before the end of the month, in just a matter of days, this little gal is going to be a big sister, and we are going to have another grand niece!

Here's what's on my needles and almost finished.  As you can see, the hat needs some blocking, and the bootie needs its mate.

I'd best get crackin' Right?  But first I'm off to lunch with a friend. (Meanwhile, if you have a chance, check out Judy L's blogto see what others are knitting.

Update: Abigail Marie arrived Sunday morning, and yes, the booties are done and are on their way tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Hurrah, the Camera Is Back Home! (Photo Heavy)

This afternoon a FedEx truck stopped here and delivered our camera! It had been accidentally left in a restaurant in the Denver airport on our way back home on July 21. We found out the next day that the restaurant had it, but we'd just about given up hope of ever seeing it again. We don't really know why they took so long to return it but just are very glad it's home.  We had so many photos on it that we just hated to lose.

When we left home, terrible fires were burning in Eastern Washington, and our plane flew right over the smoke cloud. After our plane landed in Denver, we headed north to Fort Collins and the Loopy Ewe . Unfortunately, we left our camera in the car, but it looks just like the photo on their blog and was much bigger than I expected. (And of course, I bought some yarn and fabric.)

Next we drove  to Boulder to visit our good friends the Liggetts and also Dick's friend, Art, from high school. Isn't that a beautiful clematis?

We took Bill and Nancy to a Boulder "institution" called the Sink.  All sorts of people have signed its walls, including President Obama.

Then we headed up to the mountains.  On the way to Rocky Mountain Park, which is all uphill, I counted 109 bicyclists!

We also saw a flock of bighorn sheep~~~

and watched them cross the highway just like the sign said.

They didn't mind stopping traffic one little bit! They also made walking up hill look so easy.

The Ranger said this was only the third time since May that he'd seen them cross the road, so we felt really lucky to see them up that close.

We made lots of stops to admire the scenery and look down on the winding roads.

On the way back down the trail, we noticed lots of cars parked on the roadside.

We quickly saw what everyone was looking at!

A large herd of elk was moving across the snow field to graze on the hillside.

We loved our stay in Steamboat Springs.  Dick "caught" a magpie preening just outside our condo.

The sunsets out our window were pretty, too.

Just as we were leaving Steamboat Springs for the airport, we had a special treat, a mama moose and her calf!  It's only the second time we've ever seen one, and little did we realize that we'd almost lose all these photos.  We are so grateful to have them, and the camera they were in, back home!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Off the Needles Finally!

I am finally finished with my third Camp Loopy project. Hurrah!  And it's the first finish in my Christmas gift list. Yay!  The pattern is called Tycoon Vest, and I got it on Ravelry.  It includes sizes 6 mos. to 12 years so is very versatile. I used Cascade 220 in Forest Green because the grand son it's for loves green. Next time I'd used fewer buttons.  The pattern calls for 1-row button holes, something new to me.  I wasn't real happy with how they look, but decided to leave them.  The texture stitch isn't difficult but requires concentration as it's easy to "get off". (Ask me how I know!) We were gone a lot this month, and it was hard to squeeze in knitting time. I'm also working on a stitching project but can't show it yet, and that deadline is creeping up fast.

We babysat for Max and Stella this week which was fun.  I think Stella has finally decided that we're OK. She doesn't look too thrilled in this photo, however!

In case you're looking for a easy breakfast treat like this one, here's the recipe:

Aunt Jane’s Caramel Rolls

Using a Bundt pan, place about 18 frozen bread rolls side by side in pan. Sprinkle 1 pkg. butterscotch pudding over rolls. Melt ¼ cu. butter, add 1/2 cup brown sugar and ¾ t. cinnamon. Pour over rolls and let rise overnight. Bake in the morning at 350° 25-30 minutes. Let sit 5-10 minutes before removing from pan. (Aunt Jane’s note: I use more butter and sugar and don’t bake so long cause the kids like it GOOEY!)

BTW, we are still waiting for our camera.  The restaurant has been very slow in helping us retrieve it unfortunately. ( They have it but haven't sent it back and it's been way over a month.)

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Our Week at Grayslake

We've been very busy for the past two weeks! Our whole family gathered in Grayslake, Illinois, and had a wonderful time together. Even the weather cooperated!

The cousins had fun playing together.

Lots of time was spent at the table.  Aunt Jane and Uncle Ted from Minnesota even joined us.

 Uncle Brent made ribs for everyone to enjoy.

Sophia helped Auntie Catherine made Aunt Jane's Caramel Rolls.

Grandma Janet brought a special cake which the kids helped decorate so we could all celebrate Stella and Sophia's August birthdays.

Here are the birthday girls with Auntie Catherine.

I finally got to see whether the Heartwarmer fit Stella.  The purple dog was Sophia's gift to Stella, a project that required both grandmas' help.

There was even time to read!

All too quickly our week together was over and most of the Northwest folks had to return home.  Oma and Opa stayed an extra week, however.  More about that later!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Off the Needles~a Sparkly Bonnet

If you've not seen Cascade's Sunseeker yarn, check it out!  Sunseeker Multi is what I used for this bonnet, and I liked it so much I ordered 2 more skeins in different colors. (I needed more yarn, right?)  This bonnet is a Fiber Trend pattern, and I'd forgotten how much fun it is to knit.  Remember this photo?

She definitely needs a new hat, don't you agree? (And I need mine back!)

The ties are an I-cord that also makes a nice finish on the bottom edge.

What's on my needles now, you say?  A bunch of things, but I am going to concentrate on my Camp Loopy #3 project, started this morning.  It's a vest for a certain someone; the pattern ranges in size from 6 mos. to 12 yrs., so if it turns out well, there will be more to make in the future for 2 other someones.

With the unusually sunshine this July, our garden has kept both of us busy.  Enjoying the extra warmth is one of my favorite plants to grow each year, the Black-eyed Susan vine.  As you can see, it's headed up to our second story!  Each time I look at it I'm reminded of a prettier version of Jack-in-the-Beanstalk!

This year's flowers are sort of a peachy color with a dark center; all the other years before they have been orange and black. It was a surprise this time! If you've not tried this plant, it's  very fun to watch. See you next time! Meanwhile, don't forget to check out Patchwork Times for some knitting inspiration.  

Monday, July 28, 2014

Ta Da!

Lady Kina is DONE and FINALLY dry!  She was blocked on Friday and didn't dry completely until this morning. Many thanks to my sister for the button from Alaska. It worked out perfectly.

While waiting for the drying to happen, we had some fun with Max and Stella. She's just learned to point. (and is now standing!)

Max looks hesitant in this photo, but don't be fooled. He loves to swing and....

so does Stella.  Guess whose hat she's wearing?

It's good to be back home!