Friday, June 29, 2012

Never too old to learn or too young to teach

I think children are now born knowing how to maneuver the screens of iPhones , iPads and similar devices.

I have folders for my grandson's apps on both devices and moving the order of the folders doesn't phase him at all. He is two, but knows (and has known for quite a while) which folder is his. The only other app he goes to is the one for YouTube. Once there he selects "favorites" and scrolls through saved Kipper the Dog and Caillou clips.

He never seems confused or bothered that his parents have different apps or bookmarked clips. Just as kids know they can get another bedtime story out from Mommy or a cookie from Grandma, they know this phone offers these things while that one offers something else.

And then there is my husband. He appreciates all that the current electronics can do, but he'd be just as happy with a rotary dial, wall mounted phone and a pad of paper and a Bic pen. Given that one almost has to be plugged in and logged on these days, he has learned the basics but often asks me to find something or complete a task to save time.

Colton will change all that. But only if Grandpa can keep up with those flying little fingers.

Are you taking pictures AGAIN, Grandma?

You bet I am. As long as you and Grandpa are making memories, I'll be recording them. 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The doggie bag is for the dog

The doggie bag of leftovers from the restaurant is for the dog. Don't kid yourself that it will be tomorrow's lunch for you, especially if you have a smart dog.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Makes me want to slap my forehead....

I was going to avoid the news because it makes me twitch lately but I got sucked in. Again. This graphic of Ernie  fits perfectly, but the reference isn't about me being stupid.
Back in January, a man in a wealthy Detroit suburb reported his wife missing. She was found dead in the backseat of her Mercedes SUV the following day in Detroit. Her name is Jane Bashara and a time line (now out of date after yesterday's breaking news) of her murder investigation can be found here.

The couple had been married 25 years with two grown children. Bob, known as Big Bob in the community, had another nickname not known by everyone. He was into S&M and used a basement of one of his rental properties for his fellow S&M enthusiasts, including his girlfriend. Among them he was known as Master Bob.

The mentally disabled handyman that Bob had employed for years confessed to murdering Jane, but said he did so with a gun held to his head by Bob. Some people expressed skepticism as to this duress, but the more you saw the handyman's interviews, the more believable he became due to his simple mindedness.

Meanwhile, Bob cried on cue for TV interviews but didn't come off as believeable at all. Then he failed a lie detector. His attorney was quick to come up with an excuse and dismissed that. Bob remained a free man but "a person of interest" to police and prosecutors.

As you might expect when something like this happens in a neighboring community, especially one that is rarely in the spotlight for a heinous crime, everyone has talked about this and has an opinion. Many have wondered why the police haven't arrested him for his wife's murder, many have thought it is only a matter of time and hope that he doesn't skate free on a technicality, but I have yet to hear anyone say they think the handyman acted on his own (he had no motive) or that Bob hasn't had something to do with his wife's murder.

Yesterday Master Bob was arrested. Not for Jane's murder though. He was arrested for soliciting the murder of the handyman who is in jail! (Link to that story)

If he was a character in a book, I would put the book down and declare that nobody is that stupid to think they can cheat, lie and get away with it...but I'd be wrong. And short on memory. Wasn't it just a few days ago I was ranting about Rielle Hunter and John Edwards?

Ron White says it all, and quite often:

I could say more about all of this but I promised hubby I'd fix him lunch today. He can turn grizzly when he doesn't eat. What.... you don't believe me?

Monday, June 25, 2012

Restoring faith in humanity

Need a boost to start your week that isn't painful like the kick photo a few days ago?  Here ya go!

These are pictures of a man jumping into rough waters to rescue a stranger's Shih Tzu in Melbourne.

The text and photos are from Buzz Feed, a site shared on Facebook by Joan Steffend Brandmeier. Some of you may remember her from her show on HGTV called Decorating Cents.

Sue Drummond was walking her beloved Shih Tzu, Bibi, on a pier in Melbourne, when a fierce gust of wind picked him up and hurled him into the rough waters of the bay. A passerby, Raden Soemawinata, who happened to be on the pier that day to scatter his grandmother's ashes, wasted no time in stripping down and diving into the bay to rescue the animal.
(Photos: Chris Scott)

There is more kindness and compassion in the world than most news broadcasts would lead you to believe. May your day be filled with kindness and compassion, both in giving and receiving.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Hopeful new beginnings

Sometimes inspiration comes from unlikely sources. In this case, a novel by Jennifer Chiaverini titled The New Year's Quilt. I've read and enjoyed most of her Elm Creek series but had missed this one when it was first released and am now reading it on my Kindle.

Don't be confused by the book's title. The inspiration isn't about quilting. The inspiration for me came when the main character explains what new year's resolutions mean to her. She believes that a resolution comes after reflection, and once made, is a sign of hopefulness.
Hmmmm, that makes sense, doesn't it? 

If we decide to change something in our life, we don't (or shouldn't) do this on a whim if it is something important. We reflect. We research what will be be the best way to lose weight, save money, which car is best suited to our needs, and so on.

The problem with New Year's Resolutions (capitalized because they seem SO important in early January) is that they are often made half-heartedly. If we drank too much, ate too much, spent too much, we promise ourselves that we are NEVER going to do that again, but if we don't change our actions, we can't expect the outcome to change.

I doubt I will make resolutions on January 1st of next year just because it is a new year. If I do make them, it will be because every day is a new day and a new chance to improve. Resolution is not a dirty, negative word. Thinking of it as hopeful has made it much lighter to carry in my mind and heart as I try to make some changes that are for the better.

I know I've been vague about what it is going on but that has been purposeful. We all have something we'd like to change but think we are doomed to repeating. Certainly change isn't easy, especially if other people are involved, but each one of us is worth the work. Toss out the negative thoughts and concentrate on this moment. To use a catch phrase, don't let your past define your present.

 I am Knitty....hear me roar!
(poor embarrassed pooch!)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Need to kick start your day?

Admit it. We all need a little boost from time to time. Sometimes the boost is unexpected, or specifically, from an unexpected source.

Photo source:
I hope your boosts and nudges today are all gentle.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

I know there aren't any answers....

I know there aren't any answers, but I have to ask anyway: whatever happened to morality and decency?
I should preface this by saying I know that they both still exist and thankfully, I witness this every day among family, friends and neighbors. Why this question today? I've had the news on (and what passes as news) and keep hearing about Rielle Hunter and John Edwards.

My understanding is that none of the big name publishers would take on Rielle's book. That isn't stopping the media from interviewing her and leaking quotes from her book though. I believe it comes out next week. I am not looking up that information or sharing the name of it. I didn't like her before but hearing her call Jon Edwards' deceased wife a "witch on wheels" crosses so many lines of decency, I just can't stomach seeing her face or hearing her name now.

Perhaps Elizabeth was a shrew. Who knows at this point? She isn't here to defend herself and her cheating spouse can't be trusted to tell us what day of the week today is. He apparently told Rielle on their first night together that he had three other mistresses. He later told her that wasn't true and that he initially said that because he didn't want her getting too attached to him. In other words, it didn't matter that he was a married man, she became mistress #4 anyway. I'm tempted to use a vulgar term for her at this point, but that would compromise my questioning of decency.

I'm neither a fan nor a detractor of Elizabeth Edwards. She hasn't canonized been by me because she died, but I do feel for anyone suffering through cancer or public humiliation. She endured both. What bothers me now is that Elizabeth's younger children, a daughter born in 1998 and a son in 2000, are hearing this crap. The oldest daughter of Elizabeth and John stood by her father throughout his trial. It bothered me that at the end of the trial he called Frances Quinn Hunter "precious" and "whom I love, more than any of you can ever imagine and I am so close to and so, so grateful for." Maybe that is what the media chose to show us, but don't you wonder how his other kids felt?
I am tired of celebrities who are so full of themselves, the common rules of decency that most of try to follow don't apply to them. I am tired of opportunists like Rielle getting more than air time than someone who is unselfish and does good for others on a daily basis. I worry about the message our kids get from what plays out in the media. Is it cool that Rihanna has Drake and Chris Brown feuding over her? Is it okay that athletes pay off drug fines, continue playing, do drugs again, pay fines again and continue to be idolized? Do they know that reality TV is about as real as Orson Welles' radio broadcast of alien invasion in 1938?

I try not to watch much news because it makes me twitch and rant as I'm doing now. All I really wanted to catch was the weather forecast yesterday and this morning, and both times the local weather had computer glitches and couldn't use their graphics. While they did things the old fashion way, just telling us what to expect, I knew that I would stick my head outside to see if it was really as hot and humid as they say. It was and still is. I just had to see for myself.

To show you that my day is not without humor, even when I am annoyed at things I can't change, I will end with this:

Monday, June 18, 2012

House cleaning, computer style

Yesterday was Father's Day. We had a lovely day. Dinner wasn't difficult but it did seem to generate a lot of dishes. Other than washing dishes yesterday, the only other thing I did that was time consuming was housekeeping. On my computer. On Pinterest.

If you've been bitten by the Pinterest bug, you likely know what I'm talking about. I had so many recipes on my Recipe Board, I decided to create new boards of narrower definition and move pins around. Same thing with a few other subjects that needed reorganizing. Highly important stuff, right?
My house isn't spotless, but that hasn't been my goal in years. I think of a tile that hung in my godmother's kitchen that read "My house is clean enough to be healthy and messy enough to be happy". That is my goal now. Or my excuse.

This project didn't arise from boredom. In my mind, it really need to be done. Things are easier to find now. I have a few closets and cupboards that always seem to need straightening, but if the kids came early, they would have walked into a mess had I started one of those projects. The beauty of computer and online file cleaning/reorganizing is that you can close the program or file and the mess is hidden from early or unexpected guests. Another plus is that you don't break anything while doing this. No glass vases fall from a shelf, no fingernails bend and break as you labor and unless you are without a fan or air conditioning and it is a hot, summer day, you don't even break out into a sweat. This is my kind of labor!

Next on my list of computer cleaning chores is tackling my photos, both on my hard drive and in Photobucket. This is going to take longer and I might not be up to it today. I mean really, not after all that hard work yesterday!
I don't want you to think that my family is only concerned with easy cleaning tasks. Sometimes we have to tackle the really dirty jobs, the ones where you hesitate to wear your "good clothes" in case they get stained or torn in the process.  Fortunately we have a specialist in our midst. You're going to be jealous, but sorry, he isn't for hire.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Cranky Saturday

Why does illness exist? And if it must, why must it visit good people?
No answer to that? How about figuring out why some people complain loudest about what they are guilty of? Does anyone have a mirror that will show the rude and inconsiderate what they look like?

When did common sense become such a rare commodity?

Why do we need fish flies (aka May flies and Canadian soldiers)?
If you don't have the pleasure of fish flies in your town, their season is a few weeks long. Each insect lives roughly 24 hours. They don't bite or in other ways harm people or pets, but they are attracted to lights where they swarm, then die in piles along the street, clinging to windows or screens, and just plain anywhere and everywhere. En masse, the dead ones stink. Like fish. Especially in heat and humidity.

Why aren't elected officials in Washington subject to the same insurance concerns as the rest of us? Perhaps more of us need to run for office just for the life long insurance benefits.

Why are the two political parties such big businesses? Ever feel that they are lobbyists are really running the country and what you and I want is barely heard or considered?

Why aren't long time customers rewarded occasionally for their loyalty? One son just switched cable and internet companies. He is getting more than we have, for less money. Hubby called and asked if we had to leave and return in order to get a deal after being told that was for new customers only. He squawked long enough and loud enough that our rate has been reduced by $20 per month and we'll get HBO for a year. You know they aren't going broke doing this. Wouldn't it be nice if long time customers got a perk instead of just the new ones?
Whew! I feel better getting this off my chest. In case you're wondering, it isn't a family member who is ill but we do have a few friends struggling with health issues, one is in a coma.

The rudeness and common sense rants came about because I went grocery shopping. On a Saturday....what was I thinking???

The fish flies, government, politics and cable rants are all self explanatory. Now if I can just get the bug guts stains out of hubby's golf shorts, the last of my crankiness should dissipate.
I hope the washboard doesn't ruin my manicure......

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Confusion at the supermarket....

There was a bit of confusion at the supermarket this morning. When I was ready to pay for my groceries, the cashier said, “Strip down facing me.”.

Making a mental note to complain to my congressman about Homeland Security running amok, I did just as she had instructed.

When the hysterical shrieking and security alarms finally subsided, I found out that she was referring to my credit card.

I have been asked to shop elsewhere in the future...


Monday, June 11, 2012

Wanna play with finger puppets?

I finally got around to watching all three episodes of The Hatfields and the McCoys Saturday night. We recorded if from a History Channel marathon last weekend. It was good but 6 hours of TV, even with forwarding through commercials, is a lot of TV in one sitting.

I seldom give TV my full attention unless something very compelling is on. Saturday was no exception, but instead of knitting, I did some hand sewing. I made finger puppets.

I didn't have a pattern but I did use some online images for inspiration. The cow and pig in the center of the bottom row were the first two. I decided to make the puppets a bit wider so that hubby or my sons could use these to entertain Colton.

You never know when a stage production might need immediate casting! The top row is supposed to be Winnie the Pooh, Eeyore, Piglet and Tigger. Colton got that which is all that mattered in my world.

I have a few more animals in mind and maybe a clown and a few people. Next I'll have to work on a screenplay. I'd hate to see these fine young actors languish in a toy box or lined up on the wrong side of a table runner as shown above.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Nap Time!

We have a bed upstairs that the grandson could use when he is here at nap time, but I'm not comfortable with him being upstairs and me/us being down here. I saw a pattern that someone posted on Pinterest for a long, envelope style cover sewn from a cute kid-friendly print and stuffed with pillows to make a sleep mat. Here is the link to those directions.

Being old enough to have experienced many *What! A! Great! Idea!* projects that have fallen flat after time and money has been expended, I decided to go fast, easy and cheap. All those things our mothers told us not too be when we were dating. Hehehe...

Anyway, Colton loves to reach into pillowcases and finger the corners of pillows as he is settling down to sleep. With that in mind, I decided to use premade pillowcases. I would have loved a kid print, but they seem to be sold only in complete sheet sets. I found packages of pillowcase pairs on clearance and bought them. We had three spare pillows at home so I only sewed three of them together.
I zigzagged the long sides with a fairly wide zigzag set at a narrow stitch length. I went over the seams twice.
Somewhat flatter pillows might be more practical, but these are easily removed between nap time visits. The case will be easy to wash. I might spring for satiny pillow protectors to make sliding them in and out even easier.

Yesterday was the big test...would Colton like this?

He took to it right away!

Bears in diapers approve of it too!

He wanted it on the couch, his usual nap place, which started out ok, but proved to be slippery and he landed on the floor, barely waking up. I rearranged the mat and he snuggled back onto it to resume a nice long rest.

Maybe I'll look for a 4th pillow while I'm out checking pillow protectors, then come home and add the fourth pillow case. If I nap on it, rest assured, no photos will be shared here!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

My blog buddy Chatty Crone posts fun jokes and little stories on Fridays. I'm doing the same today with this joke about sex among the elderly:

Sunday Morning Sex

I will never hear church bells ringing again without smiling..

Upon hearing that her elderly grandfather had just passed away, Katie went straight to her grandparent's house to visit her 95 year-old grandmother and comfort her. When she asked how her grandfather had died, her grandmother replied, "He had a heart attack while we were making love on Sunday morning." Horrified, Katie told her grandmother that 2 people nearly 100 years old having sex would surely be asking for trouble.

"Oh no, my dear," replied granny. "Many years ago, realizing our advanced age, we figured out the best time to do it was when the church bells would start to ring. It was just the right rhythm. Nice and slow and even. Nothing too strenuous, simply in on the Ding and out on the Dong."

She paused to wipe away a tear, and continued, "He'd still be alive if the ice cream truck hadn't come along."

Thanks to my friend Linda for sharing this.

Thanks to my friend Deanna for passing this next bit along in an email.
This Is Rather Neat !!
After you type your first name a card comes up with "Sorry Sorry Sorry" on it. Just wait about 30 seconds. The words will turn white, then....... Trust me, you'll be surprised. There is nothing scary.  Watch the video from O.B. Tampons is very creative.

Click here
Before I was sure what that link was about, I used another name other than my own. Next I used my own name, both worked. Then I used a nickname that a computer generated list probably wouldn't recognize. That worked too, but not in the same way. Have fun playing with this. Good job, O.B. Tampons marketing!

Turquoise necklace

A necklace in the April 2012 edition of Bead and Button Magazine was the inspiration for my new necklace. The original necklace and ordering info for the pattern if you can't locate that issue of the magazine is here. With concern that the turquoise stones that I used might become a bit heavy, and not knowing how they compared to the size briolettes mentioned in the pattern, I wove a two chain repeat between them. That and not using two different colored seed beads were my only variations.

Here are the components

A close up of the beading in progress

And the finished necklace on yours truly

Sorry that last photo is a bit grainy. I'm blaming hubster since I took the other shots and he isn't standing here reading that I am blaming him.

Most of my beading projects are simple line bracelets strung on beading wire. Those are made to satisfy an urge to put certain colors together and to have a quick project. Sometimes when I have a labor intensive project of another sort going on, making a bracelet or a greeting card is a big boost. This was a nice balance for me, more complicated than a line bracelet but not as detailed and time consuming as some projects I've undertaken as shown here.

Now that I have beading supplies put away, I have no excuse not to tackle a few sewing projects that shouldn't take long. Stay tuned! 

Monday, June 4, 2012

Foiled again!

While at the cottage this weekend, waiting for a carpet cleaning company to arrive, I attempted to compose a post on my iPad using a download called Blogsy.
Photo from
If I try to post directly to Blogger from my iPad, all formatting is lost. The result is a run on paragraph and I have no luck with using photos or graphics.

I know that I used Blogsy once or twice with success, but as my kids used to say, I mis-remembered which button was the preview button and I lost what I had written. After an inward scream that used a few curse words, I went to the truck to read.


Yep, I went to sit inside the truck. The miracle worker from Chem Dry had arrived and was working his magic on some very dirty carpeting. The sun had been out while I sat on the deck and attempted a post, but had gone into hiding when the post disappeared.  We had unseasonably cool weather the past few days. Not truly cold by winter standards, but definitely chilly for June. Add bouts of driving rain and winds and we had a weekend spent mostly indoors.
Photo from Google search of Chem Dry
I wanted to be out of the way of the carpet cleaner but I was cold sitting out on the deck. Bill was content with the temperature, but he isn't normal is always much warmer than I am. The poor man really hoped I would have hot flashes. Not to be mean, but just so we could be in agreement on windows, fans and furnaces. Anyway, off I went to the truck with my Kindle and finished a Miss Julia novel,  Miss Julia Rocks the Cradle.   Check out the series by Ann B. Ross here.
Author Ann B. Ross
The sun returned, the temps warmed up a bit, the Chem Dry man left after doing a great job and after an hour or so, we began putting the smaller pieces of furniture back in place.

We packed up to return home this evening and ran into a island resident on our way. I didn't get out of the truck to exchange pleasantries. His expression didn't look entirely welcoming.
His shell alone was at least a foot long. He isn't one of the world's cutest creatures, is he? But who am I to judge? If you had seen me with my hair pulled back (and none too clean) in a dirty sweat shirt (we washed everything before putting things back into place), you wouldn't have stopped to meet me either!

If you are successfully composing and posting from your iPad, please throw me a clue or two or six. If I find out you are holding out on me, I will have to send Tough Turtle to rough you up a bit and spill what you know. Given his speed, or lack thereof, you probably have a year before you need worry. Maybe I'll improve my Blogsy technique by then.

Friday, June 1, 2012

The Human Mind

A little Friday funny for everyone....

Analysis of this picture can tell us a lot about how different people think.

- For young men, it's a picture of a lady with a nice derrière but only the most observant will notice that she is crossing a street.

-  The really observant will notice that she is wearing a thong.

- For older men, she appears to be a respectable woman w
ith a big ass on her way to work.

- The perverts among them will imagine her naked.

- Wiser men will ponder the  presence of mind of the photographer
to take the shot in the face of such beauty and be grateful that they shared it.

- For half of the women, this is an ordinary woman 
who should not have left home dressed that way.

- The other half will think she is a slut but wonder where she bought that blouse.

- Older women will imagine the misery that the woman's
curves will cause by the time she reaches 50.

- But only children, the extremely intelligent, and the celibate will notice that the taxi is being driven by a dog!