Tuesday, November 27, 2007


I received this incredible floss/ribbon fob from Barbara. She remembered that I love peacocks and she got the colors just right ,too. It is sitting right here in front of me, on my desk, where I can enjoy it.

I got my car back- on Saturday! They aren't even open on Saturday , but they messed about with it so long and made 3 diagnosis and had to order different parts and felt so bad, that someone came in and fixed it Saturday morning. The final repair was cheaper than the one I thought they were doing in my last blog, as well.

The drive to pick the car up was so stressful that I managed to get sick . I am coughing, what little brains I have , out. WHIIIIINE!!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Do you see this car? This is NOT Rachael"s car.
Can you say "rental car" ? I knew you could!

The yellow writting on the side gives it away- ADAC (German AAA) replacement for my car while it is being repaired at a garage 130 kilometers away. The beast, which in three and a half years has not given me a moments trouble, decided to leave me stranded on the autobahn, miles from home, Sunday evening at 5pm.
It simply had no power. I knew that something was wrong on Saturday as it lost power a couple of times , but I was almost at the end of a two and a half hour trip and I had an appointment for a new battery and to have the heater looked at on Wednesday (today) anyway , and each time it recovered nicely. I left for home early on Sunday , to try and get home before dark , even if I had to go slow- but I hadn't planned on going THAT slow. At some point it was just no go. I called ADAC , who showed up after half and hour , he messed with the car for another 30 minutes couldn't find anything and called for a tow. The tow guy showed up after another 35 minuts or so , It all went very quickly considering ,but.. I had planned on being home by then and I had to peee..... The tow guy was very kind and stopped at the next McD so that I could use the facilities and then on to the garage where they gave me the abouve pictured Ford Focus and sent me on my way.
Now comes the scary part- they couldn't find anything wrong with the car. They had the same driving experience that I did ,but just couldn't find out why! Tuesday evening they had the answer. The water pump . That's why the heater wasn't working either. The engine wasn't being cooled properly and everytime it got too hot, an emergency program kicked in and choked the engine untill it cooled down- hence- no power. They will have it fixed tomorrow or Friday to the tune of - big bucks- at which point I will be free to drive the 260 klicks to retreve the thing. And then it still needs a new battery and emergency triangle which got left behind, on the A64, 1500 meters before the Sonnenbornerkreuz. If you see it could you grab it for me?

The other 50 % was wonderful - party , party , party. For which I have no picture's because once again, I forgot my camera! Sombody smack me!! Saturday after a brief stop to shop and gather Starbuck's in Munster, I drove on to Masstricht. Yes, I managed to visit Annemarie after forever. For some reason I had forgotten what a darling ,dandelion puff of curly blond hair she has. She will probably hate me for that, but it was soooo nice to see her and have a bit of a chat in person. Jula looked good and Pelle is so cute- he fell asleep on the couch holding on to my finger. One just doesn't realise how much one misses the odd bit of baby love until one gets some. My heart was melting.
But, by 7:45 pm I needed to be back on my way over the border to Germany again.. My friend Joe turned 50 on Sunday and we were celebrating into his birthday. I know I have mentioned before that it is bad luck in Germany to celebrate ahead of time- so at midnight we sang , congrtulated , opened presents etc.. I went to bed at 4:30 in the morning. I must have been insane. I woke up and wandered downstairs , glanced at the clock and it was NOON.
Once again I was off to the races in my not so trusty (at this point ) steed. A quick wash, fresh clothes and a glass of water and away.
Sunday was Leonie's birthday. Leonie is my god daughter and I was late for her birthday. Some serious present action was called for here , but luckly I was prepared. We had a lovely lunch and then coffee and cake. Wilma (Leonie's Mama) had noodles and cake, extra with no wheat, for me. Thank you Wilma -big hugs.
Unfortunatly , I had to leave early in an unsucsessful attempt at avoiding the above described oddesy. I wish I could have stayed longer. Next time :-)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Red boots, blue boots,

old boots, new boots.
If you look carefully you can see that these two pairs of boots are the same. One pair is just one year older than the other. I bought the older (duh) pair one year ago on St Martin's Sunday . I like them so much that this year I bought them again- on St. Martin's Saturday. The shoe store in our village has 20% off on St Martin's and I was not willing to pay more this year than last year! For me these are the perfect , everyday winter boots. I bought them a size larger than my summer shoes so that my thick socks fit inside , the sole is "shock absorbing" and non slip , the heel is just the right height to give ME a little height ,but not too high or narrow. They look good with jeans and I also like the height of the shaft. I wonder if they will make them next year? I was amazed to see how much the old boots had aged- even though I did polish them regularly.
A shoe question for those who go to a fitness studio (or gym, as we used to call it) , At the fitness studio that we use, most people don't put their shoes in the lockers, but leave them on the floor. This makes a lot of sense, as we are not talking Manolo's here. But... almost everyone- okay everyone but me- turns their shoes so that the toes point towards the wall/ lockers. I don't get it. Everyone sits down to change their shoes , both before and after working out. Especially now that it is winter and most people are wearing boots ( I was also the last one to go there- last Thursday I was still wearing flip flops to the gym) So if you are sitting down, the shoes you just removed have the toes facing the center of the room. Why do people turn them around? They just have to turn them around again when they change back into them. Am I the laziest person on the planet? Have I not grasped some important point of changing room ettiquette? Don't I have anything better to do than worry about this?

And yes, I am a Dr, Suess fan . I pretty much know "Green Eggs and Ham" by heart. It's amazing how often you can work ".. and he rode with his load to the tip top to dump it" ( mini quiz- which book is this from?) into everyday conversation.

Thursday, November 08, 2007


I can't belive I haven't written in so long. Probably no one will read this as they have given up on ever finding anything new here. I noticed a lot of people having long pauses between their blog entries lately- exept Barbara- she is writting every day- and I am not even managing to leave comments- Barbara, if you are reading this- I can't belive how much you have accomplished recently- you are amazing, and Max's stitching - WOW !
I had a wonderful trip to Virginia. No pictures because I have a new camera and the battery has a different set up than my old one and I just didn't have it figured out. Somewhere on my cell phone are a couple pix of Cheryl and me at the new WWII monument ,but I am going to have to get someone more phone/computer savvy ( Patrick?) to move them over here.

Virginia was fab. Great weather, although everyone who lived there thought it was too warm. I was at the beach which cleanses my soul. I was at the book store, I was at Starbuck's. I was at the yarn store, I was with Cheryl!!! We went to Cheryl's knitting meet-ups , met great people, laughed our butts off ( ha- I wish-mine is still a million times tooo big) . I met Remelda and traded bits with her and ate fantastic , wheat free, frozen waffels. I kid you not, those babies where great.
We went to Washington DC and saw the three things that were at the top of my "things to see in Washington DC" list. Thank you Rick (hug)
The Holocaust Museum- very intense- IMO not for childeren between the ages of about 2 and 12. Under 2 just won't get it and children under 12 will get it, but not understand. Very well done.
The new WWII monument.Pretty , but OTT. There is something to represent everything. Pillers, gold eagles, water, wreaths, maps, reliefs, BIG engraved signs. Like I said it is pretty , but the feeling is missing. If you go to the Vietnam War memorial, you start to cry. This one is nothing like that. Plus I have lived in Europe too long not to be bothered by all of the "do not" signs. Don't go on the grass, put your feet in the water, drink eat or smoke, climb on anything. Breath?
Number three was Mount Vernon- loved it. If you have a chance - go.

Once I got home ( we won't even discuss my flights other than to say that if you ever want to get anywhere on time , don't choose to fly parallel to me. On the other hand , I always do get to where I want to be. Up to you) and had all my chicks back in the nest (exept M of course) I thought things would get back to normal, but it hasn't been that easy.

I have started to go to the fitness studio three times a week. Once to the afore mentioned Pilates class and twice to work out. This seems to be using up some of my mojo. I haven't been able to stitch or knit much. I just can't seem to get started. I have managed to do an amazing amount of other stuff. Getting my kids to a long series of Dr. and dentist appointments ,music lessons, driving lessons etc.. Worked in the library on Tuesdays and covered what seemed to be 397 history books. I even managed to get the winter tires put on my car.
My major goal at this point is to get Dianne's NRR finished and in the mail- it's almost finished- I swear it is! Mojo- come back- please.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Mad insane packing.

We are mad insane packers.
I took Nala to Anja and stayed there for a couple of days-trying to recover from my CC fiasco- Oh you don't know about that? I managed to lose my credit card last Saturday and only noticed it was gone Monday night. I am leaving for the States early this Monday morning- see my problem.

After I canceled my card on Monday night and ordered a new one, I was lying in bed and all of a sudden had a vision and new exactly where I had lost the stupid thing. Okay, maybe it's not the CC that stupid - it's me.
Patrick and I were at Starbuck's and the cashier gave me my card back after I had put my wallet away and so I wrapped the reciept around the card and stuck it in my pants pocket. Later I was in a restroom (parking garage) and while washing my hands looked down and saw a piece of paper sticking out fromn between the toilet seat and the edge of the bowl. I thought "hmmmm was that there when I sat down - I think I would have seen it." And walked away!! At 12:30 in the morning I thought "Yes goof ball , you would have, and since you didn't maybe it belonged to you. " In the morning I called the park garage and someone had kindly turned it in. - I got it back , but canceled is canceled. The bank promised me a new one by Saturday at the latest. It actually came on Friday. So- a huge cosmic thank you to the person who found my card and turned it in and to the people who replace CC's for getting the new one to me so quickly.

On to insane packing - I got the boys to do most of their packing yesterday evening. Then this morning, I took them to Muenster and told them - whatever you don't have, but need for your trip- let's get it now. We got Alexander a rain jacket- picked up his new glasses and a book, Patrick got munchies for the trip (22 hours in a bus) and the new phone that we were chasing last Saturday. I got a new suitcase. We were home about 15 minutes and Alexander asks me if I have a small umbrella for him. Well- I do , but they are all to girly. Why didn't he say something in Muenster?! I have also had to dig out a swinmming cap , camping flatware , passports and a lot of socks. I even remembered to make copies of the kids shot records and write 27 contact phone numbers on them.
Now, I need to pack my new suitcase.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Look who's here!!

Just for 6 days, but we are making the most of it. Mostly improving the economy.

Pilates tonight- this is helping my 'back" problem more than anything else has up until now. The class I am attending is a series of 10- I don't know what will happen when it is over. I hope that they will offer a continuation class , but I am afraid too few people will want to take it.

BTW- I floss after eating everything exept a cough drop. So yes, in bed, without a mirror, in the car, wherever I happen to be and think that no one who might object can see me. I said it was scary :-)

Saturday, September 22, 2007

I fear I am getting old.

My favorite chill has been to lay in bed with a good book , a munchie and a bottle of water. Now my favorite chill is to lay in bed with a good book, a munchie a bottle of water and a roll of dental floss. Scary.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Weekend Report

It is beautiful out- and I am in the house trying to "get stuff done" . Laundry, ironing, stitching (on Dianne's RR, which is now officialy late) writting emails, vaccuming, and blogging. I am doing all of this while listining to CNN- I am a bit of a news junkie.
Later is the Formula One race in Spa- this is knitting and stitching time. Spa is a fun race to watch for a lot of reasons , but one, is that part of the track is regular street and we have actually driven on it.
My sister sent me this beatiful knitting bag a while back. It is soooo cute. I love the baby blue , fine wale cord it is made out of- it even has a matching accesory bag- with a zipper! - She is doing some great sewing.

Su, made all of the members of our RR neighborhood exchange teeny, tiny exquisite, sissor fobs with little houses stitched on them. Stunnig! Thank you Su ;-)

The knitting bits are my first ( self knitted) dish-cloths. The one is finished and the second almost finished. Cheryl sent me the yarn a while ago, I kept seeing this pattern on different blogs , homepages etc.. and thought it was really interesting and decided to give it a whirl. These are really fun , fast finishes. I haven't tried them yet , but I have heard that they work nicely and wash up well.
I hope that everyone else who has lovely weather today, is outside enjoying it.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

paying debts

These socks are for Barbara and Arden. I waited to post them until Barbara had received them. I owed her a pair as a prize from my book recomendation contest- before Easter. O0ps! it took me so long because I knit three pair to get just the right ones.
The first two pair when finished were lovely- , but one pair said Mom and the other had a wide pink stipe-and I know Barbara is not big on pastels. These were exactly what I was aiming for when thinking "Barbara"
It is the Embossed Leaves from interweave (again) and the little socks for Arden have sort of a vine pattern going around them. The yarn is from my last Opal abo and I made a point of not matching the stripes as I wanted a more 'organic" look.
I am quite pleased with them and Barbara says they fit and the colors are quite restful.
I wis everyone a "restful ' weekend.
"Restful" not a word I use often ,but now that I have started I can't seem to stop :-)

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

hummm- where was my brain?

On Friday I sent out a couple of gifts. One was for my mother. It came back yesterday. Why? Because, while I cleverly wrote the return address, I forgot to write on it who was supposed to receive it. Eight Euros in the toilet, because the stamps are canceled. What a dork.

edit- The post lady was lovely and put the package back through without charging me for postage again. Isn't that nice!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Can a family spend more time apart?

Alexander was in a play a couple of weeks ago. That's him in the green shirt. The play was called "Das Fest" and the kids did a fantastic job on what was some very serious material. Alexander looks a little dark in the picture because he played a black man. The character spoke only english and so he was the obvious choice for the part. He did well ,though, and found it a lot of fun, and thinks he would be interested in doing more theater . Which I think is a great idea.

Yesterday , I did something I have never done before. I bought an airline ticket on line. I am a real weenie about things like this. The computer confounds me and I am afraid I will make some huge mistake. I kept obsessivly checking the dates to make sure I was puchasing for the right time - and finally decided- I 'll just go whenever the darn ticket is good for. So I am off to visit Cheryl, in Virginia, for a week in October.
How did this come about? Well.. Cheryl keeps asking me to come for a visit and I really want to sooooo. Both boys have big school trips this year- Alexander is going to Scotland and Patrick to Rome. Last week I noticed that they would actually be gone at the same time! What an oportunity :-) Michael said I should go do something, and so I am.

We had to have a laugh though - Michael will be in Kinchasa, The Congo. Patrick in Rome, Italy. Alexander in Edinbrugh, Scotland.And, of course , me in Virginia Beach- Virginia. One musn't forget Nala. She will be back with Anja and Co. in the Netherlands. Between us we are covering five countries, three contenents, and both hemespheres. Maybe someday soon we can all go somewhere together?

Monday, August 20, 2007

Shopping finishing and cool stuff

Her is some yarn I purchase this sommer- all of it is sock yarn- I see I went a litle heavy on the purple!
The large twisted hanks are from Pagewood Farm . Handdye from a woman in California. The colors are fantastic and the yarn is really cushy.
The small hank is Claudia' handpaints. I knit a pair of socks from this yarn already and I love how it knit up.
The two small skeins in the yelow net is a purple and white Louet. In the red net a skein of pink Lornas Laces- the second skein had knots in it so I didn"t buy it. This will have to be kids socks.
The small pink skein is Tofutsies. This yarn looks really thin and I am kind of afraid of it :-)
All the other skeins are from Trekking, including the finished pair of socks in brown and pink. A yahoo sock knitting group that I belong to here in Germany went on a field trip to Trekking Zitron two weekends ago and did a little shopping. They actually make their own bamboo needles at Trekking- DPNs and circs. They showed us a little bit about how they make and put the circs together. They also told us that you should always store your circs in a plastic bag as the nylon cable loses water and over time, becomes dry and can become less flexible and even crack. If you notice this happening , lay them in water for a few minutes. I have been storing mine over a gooseneck lamp to keep the kinks out- I guess I better put them in a zippy.

The socks are from Trekking yarn, knit on Trekking 2.25 bamboo needles. The colors on all the pictures is pretty bad as it is overcast today, but I liked the colorway of this yarn so much that I knit plain socks with it ,which is something I almost never do.
The post card is from Cheryl and Rick's son Rich , who was on a dig this summer in Israel- I thought this was the coolest thing and am so grateful that he found time to send me a postcard. Thanks Rich !

Thursday, August 16, 2007

San Francisco

Here are the kids in Golden Gate Park. We are just in front of the de Young Museum. It has been recently remodeled , and while I liked what they have done, I was surprized at how small it is.
My all-time favorite museum - the museum of natural history and the Steinhart Aquarium and Morrison Planatarium is still closed for renovations. You can see it from where the boys are standing in this photo. Visiting it are some of my earliest and best memories. They have a small version open downtown, but it is not the same- or even close. I hope that when they finish with the building they haven't changed too much. The main reason for renovation is to make it more earthquake safe. I hope they keep, what for me ,are important bits. The beautiful tiles in the amphibian house, the Foucalt Pendulum and the prehistoric dioramas.
I have always been facinated by the Foucalt Pendulum- even when I was to small to know what it was. If you are ever near one of these it is worth it to go see it. It is not really spectacular but somehow impressive.

Sunday, August 12, 2007


Alexander turned 17 this July. In Germany he can now go to driving school. - Need I say more?

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


Sorry, My internet is down. there is something wrong somewhere in my system. I hope that when Michael is home he can get to the bottom of it. Until then I am stuck pirating one of the kids computers a couple times a day . So no pix :-( And my sister sent me the cutest knitting bag that she sewed for me. Very, very cute.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Promised Mom

I promised my mom some pictures of the table deko from my birthday party. Anja and I found both the tiny wellies and the fake grass hysterical. The flowers in the boots are real. The mini rubber ducks were given to the children as favors . Funnily enough , I just remembered that I bought these table cloths (at Ikea) 10 years ago. Anja and I had discovered that our birthdays are only a few days apart and we celebrated together for the first time, inviting the laidies in our club. I wish I could remember the menu .
This birthday the menu was chili con carne, onion bread , honey oat bread, a cheese platterwith grapes and strawberries, brownies and tiramizu. All of it home made. I even baked the finger biscuts for the tirimzu.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Just one more

My Opal Abo just arrived. I was wondering if everyone recieved the same thing , but I have now seen that while there is some overlap the yarns are not all alike.

another photo heavy post

Peonies from Michael for our Anniversary- This was quite odd as I have never before expressed an opinion on Peonies. Then about two weeks ago I was in town and sow someone walking by with a bunch and thought- Wow - those are great and then my husband sent me some. Think what you will :-0
Purple Austermann Step socks - have been OTN for about 5 months. I actually had to buy a second skein of yarn to finish these.
A mini sock for the key chain my Mom sent for my birthday and a box of yarn I recieved from Cheryl.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

I really should be making dinner but...

I have tons to say and even more to show and I thought I should at least make a start. Monday was my birthday- and Tuesday our anniversary. I had a small party on Sunday evening and we celebrated "into" my birthday. The be-utiful red biscornu is from Carol- I was so thrilled to receive this. Carol does wonderful work and it is the first bisconu that I have seen in person. Fab- really!
My sister made me the napkins and the necklace and bracelet in the next picture. I am sort of addicted to cloth napkins ( this is very wierd and I should probably save it for one of thoes tag thingys) and she knows exactly my taste.
the next picture is the contents of the box my Mom sent- various bits that she new I would like. I was very "angetan" byt the mini sock blocker and sat down yeesterday evening and knit a sock for it. It only took an hour or so. Pictures in the next post :-)
In the last picture ar a necklace from Michael , some homemade strawberry jam from the neighbor , some silk ribbon, a necklace and ring from Anja and my Pandora bracelet. The Pandora bracelet is one where you collect different beads for it and the boys gave me a new one- hard see though.
I so have more news- about my back , stitching and socks but it wil have to wait as the natives are getting restless for their dinner.

Sorry - blogger messed with me and now the pictures are in the wrong order- but your smart- you'll figure it out.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Lovely presents

Last week , Michael saw this "Strandkorb" for sale and wrote me an email with the link and said that if I liked it I should order it. Wasn't that sweet!
I did and I did. It said it would take 10 working days to be delivered , but it only took a week - and there was a holiday in there! I was so surprised- and then Patrick put it together all by himself ( it came packed flat) and when I got home from work I could sit in it- isn't it cool?
You can see some of my newly potted plants there as well. Thats about the limit of my gardening- a few large pots with flowers- I regularly let them die ( the fl0wers) and buy new ones. You would think that being from California , I would remember to water.
May is always a big present month for me , mother's day, my birthday and our anniversary. I do like getting presents- deosn't everyone?
For mother's day I received a boquet of flowers and a "Tears for Fears" CD from my kids and from my one god daughter (Ciara) a self strung bead necklace on an elastic. I think there were a lot of these made and given this year :-) I wore mine all day and then hung it on the rearview mirror in my car. Sweet!
Does anybody know what "Strandkorb" is in English, not the literal translation , but what the thing is actually called?
On the health front: After a year and a half of dealing with my back problem , I am going to have a series of very slightly invasive procedures which will hopefully sove the problem - at least to large degree. The first is on Friday- wish me luck.

Thursday, May 17, 2007


This is what we gave our kids for Easter.

And this is what I get as a thank you :-0

We do have a rule at our house that goes " shoes on or socks off" , but is appears that if I am not on the spot to enforce it , my children simply ignore it. And no , my children do not wear hand knitted socks- otherwise I am afraid they would no longer be able to walk much less play basketball!

Friday, May 11, 2007


This is my baking afternoon production. Twenty four cupcakes, a small heart shaped cake , brownies, two carrot cakes and a loaf of bread. The cupcakes and the heart are from a yellow cake mix. But the rest are not and are all made with spelt flour. The brownies are from the back of the hershey cacoa box- this is a great recipe as you only need one bowl and a spoon to make them- fantastic. The carrot cake is from "The Silver Pallett", it was my sisters wedding cake. It's a bit more work as the carrots are cooked and pureed and not just grated ,but the last time I made it I did enough carrots for twice and froze it. They will get clasic cream cheese frosting - the cupcakes will get a glaze and some sort of deko too, but not until Sunday morning. The bread is with onion and cheese . I have made this a number of times - always with a slight variation -so I am never sure exactly what it will be like- keep your fingers crossed :-) The whole of this is for a communion that we are going to on Sunday. I didn't plan to make this much , but I kind of started and couldn't stop.
I pretty much began at 4:30 this afternoon and managed to clean the kitchen , shop, do laundry and iron shirts between as well. Oh and talked to my Mom , my Sister and my DH on the phone too.
My sister and I ordered a watch for my Mom for mother's Day and they sent it to her with the invoice and no gift card. She had recieved it, loved it , but simply could not remember having ordered it. I wondered that she hadn't said anthing to me because it should have reached her early this week. I finally did say something and we had a good laugh. She thought she was losing her mind.
We are off tomorrow to our friends so - have a nice weekend and a lovely Mother's Day!!!

Monday, May 07, 2007

Socks and art cards

Another pair of finished socks- They were almost finished a month ago and only needed about three hours to complete them this weekend. The yarn is Opal and the pattern is from the new Interweave book.

On to lovely gifts. The Easter card and art cards are from Dianne- they are so cool. I had been hoping I was on her list of recipients and was thrilled to receive these. Thanks again Dianne.

I had quite a nice weekend. The daughter of a friend of my mother, Emily , is studying here in Germany for four months. I am thrilled that she found time to come for the weekend and that we were able to do some fun stuff. We shopped- ate out- went bowling , and best of all went to the Felix Nussbaum Museum in Osnabrueck. I actually enjoyed most of the art ,but that is not what we went for. The building is called the Museum without an Exit and was designed by Daniel Libeskind- the architect who has designed the World Trade Center memorial. His buildings are very modern, different and interesting. If you ever have a chance to see one- do .

I promised the winner of the book recomendation contest in this post. I received a number of recomendations for books that I had already read- but I bought and read everything else. To my surprise I was not able to read (or knit) as much as I had planned on vacation , but I did finish them soon thereafter. I really enjoyed two books- Both were fantasy and I will read more books from both authors. "To Say Nothing of the Dog" by Connie Willis and "His Majesty's Dragon" by Naomi Novik. After a bit of thought I decided that " To say Nothing of the Dog " was my favorite. I really love time travel storys and the twists they force my brain to make.
So the winner is Barbara!!
Barbara- I know neither your shoe size nor what color etc.. you would like.. but I am sure we will figure it out.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

More ....

This is my God daughter Ciara at her first communion two weeks ago. I actually have better pictures , but I love the way her face looks in this one. I was actually standing about 8 feet away, on a low brick wall , with my camera held above my head and she was surrounded by adults. So this was just a luck shot. The communion was in The Netherlands and the service was very child friendly and sweet. And, it was the weekend before Michael left and so he was able to go with us. Very nice.
The boys wore suits for the first time - I wish I had a better picture - I hope someone else does. Next weekend we are going to a confirmation and they will have to get dressed up again. Maybe I can persuade Patrick to put on his tie , and I will try to get a better picture.

Barbara: Yes , I did get your note. Thanks and I too, am sorry we couldn't get together, but we will :-)

Annamarie: Yes, I have checked and will continue to check the passports- not only the dates ,but do I still have them?- They are all good for ages and yes, I do have them , but I am very nervous about the whole thing.

Carol and Su: Yes, I would please like to have Carol's RR when Su is done with it, but please don't mail for it to get here between 21 June and 4 August. There will probably be someone who can recive it , but I 'd rather be here mysef.

Hugs and thanks to everyone else for continuing to check and comment on my blog . I do appreciate it- more than you can imagine.

The next post will have the winner of the book suggestion contest!!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Happy May First!

Well, I have been trying to write a post for almost a week, but I couldn't bring myself to start what should be a huge long thing and so I have been avoiding it. I actually hate to write and don't think I am good at it . I always have to convince myself that I am only going to write a few sentances and then just stop whenever. So that is what I am doing now.

Posting a picture and writing something, just to get back into the swing of the thing.

These socks are my finish for April. They are "Monkey Socks" from Cookie A. The yarn is Opal, in a colorway that wasn't planned to match my sofa. That was a coincedence.

Michel is back in the Congo. He left last Tuesday and is supposed to stay for two months. Right before he comes back the boys and I will leave for 6 weeks vacation in California. Our planning leaves something to be desired, but we do the best we can.

I have spent most of the last week trying to get my house back together . While Michael was here I barely managed to keep us fed and in clean underwear. Now it's back to the grindstone with the addition of everything I avoinded doing the last 4 weeks. When will someone invent self-cleaning houses?
Anyway I am ging to aim for a short post every couple of days. Maybe with a picture or two of our vacation.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Birthdays and other exciting and harrowing events.

Well, today is Michael's birthday , and as you can see, he is back in Germany- or we are in the Congo! I have on a hat too ,but I took the picture. We had big plans for he weekend. Michael was supposed to get to Germany on Friday Morning to begin his 4 week vacation, but then this happened http://edition.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/africa/03/22/Congo.reut/index.html
and he was unable to get to the airport and was confined to quarters. Our plans to go to friends in the Netherlands and our tickets for a function went right out the window.

Thursday evening I pretty much had decided to go anyway . Friday morning , Patrick woke up with a stomach ache and I decided not to go. Friday midday, Alexander came home from school and asked "Are we going?" As Patrick was feeling better - we jammed some stuff into the car, grabbed the dog and went. The between the lines here is a lot of telephone calls with Anja- tears and stomping about, on my part, a trip to the Dr. for Patrick and Michael not knowing exactly when he would be able to get on a plane.

Friday evening , I went with my friends to our "event" . It is a big charity function- I have been most years for about the last 12. Years ago ,I was on the committee that organizes this event and it is always a highlight in my year. It is a fun evening with food and drink from different countries, a casino, music and dancing and a huge tombola . But.. I prefer to go with my husband. I still had a nice time and Saturday Morning, Anja and Ciara and I went to Aachen to do a little stashing ,that is the other picture , and to hit Starbucks.
Buy the time we got home, Michael had called and said that it looked pretty good to get to the airport that evening and we could pick him up from the airport in Dusseldorf, on Sunday - that's today- his birthday. We manged to greet him at the airport with the dog, a candle in a Starbuck's muffin , paper hats etc... The main thing is he is home , safe and sound. Right now he is asleep on the sofa- OUR sofa in OUR house. You understand.

For those that come for knitting /stitching content- my new stash came from Junghans Wolle in Aachen. The greenish yarn is Opal cotton- I might actually have this already, the other yarn is Regia bamboo, there are some 2mm Addi circs , some beads to try beaded knitting, a book about knitting mittens and gloves- I may branch out, some very short knitting needles- for knitting the fingers, some blank memory cards- to make your own, and the blue box thing is a stretcher stitching frame thingy for stitching projects. I have no idea if the stretcher thingy will work ,but the box was torn and they were selling it for 2.50 , so into the basket it went. You can hardly go wrong for 2.50.
I also managed to get a great massage yesterday- so , although it started out badly , the weekend has turned out pretty well!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

More socks

Not only did I finish Su's RR yesterday - I finished these socks , late last night. They are the embossed leaves socks again , but this time in a pale green Regia.

I am up early this morning- for a Sunday ,as it is the first Formula One Sunday of the year and the race is in Australia . I did not get up at 4 am like we used to do. When the kids were smaller and Michael was home , the kids would crawl in bed with us and we would all watch together. This morning I am watching the repeat- by myself. I got up at 8 for the pre-race show and ironed shirts while watching it, and am now watching the race, but it's just not the same by myself. I think I'll go cast on a new pair of socks!

If you missed the "Help" post, please do go read it. Thanks.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Su's RR - done and in the mail

Well, Here is a picture of Su's RR . I stitched the square in the bottom , left hand corner. The picture is totally crooked ,but it is raining and gray and I was trying to get as much natural sunlight on the thing as possible. Then as it was already 11 and our post closes at 12 , I packed it up and hurried over there to make sure it got in the mail today, and only looked at the pix afterwards. But I did get it mailed :-)
Now I am waiting to receive Veronica's from Barbara and hoping for inspiration. Barbara did a fab job extending a square that Veronica had stitched. I am not sure I have enough imagination for this! I will do my best.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Help!! There is a prize involved here!

The book cases are exploding- it's time to buy more books!
Seriously folks- We are going on vacation over Easter - Center Park in The Netherlands. We will be spending lot of time swimming and saunaing ( don't think this is actually a word ,but you know what I mean) bowling and playing ping pong etc.. but I also hope to visit Amsterdam , knit , see Barbara and just relax and read. So here's the thing- I need some book suggestions. I want to make a largish order from Amazon in the next couple of days ,but I don't know what to get.
Many of my favorite authors have new books coming out in June or July , but I need something now! So please let me know what you think I would like.
Please include your shoe size if you would like a to try and win a pair of hand knit socks. The person who recommends the book I like the best will receive a pair of socks knit buy my own two hands.
If you don't want socks but just want to recommend a book - just leave out your shoe size. I know there are a lot of people out there who think hand knit socks are eeeeeee :-)

Edited- Barbara wants a hint about what I like- is will be easier to say what I don't like . I am pretty opinionated . I will never again read Danielle Steel or Stephan King. So no really cheapy Romance, and Horror is pretty much out. Scary and Romantic are both good- just not that kind. Also I won't read L. Ron Hubbard , even though the one sci fi that I read from him was pretty good. I just refuse to support that kind of thing. I think the last book that I just loved was "The time Travelers Wife" and before that it was "The Red Tent". That's all your going to get ,as I want to know what YOU think I would like.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

I 'm alive!!

Here is a picture of Su's neighborhood in progress.
Alexander has learned "which" one is the wash machine but not how to use it. He has however learned to change the bag in the vaccume cleaner.
I got a massage last Friday!!!
My husband might be coming home on the 23rd and staying for a month!!! He can celebrate his birthday at home.
My chest no longer feels like someone is sitting on it all the time.
Here are also two picture's of recently completed socks.
And a picture of my feet- not to show you my good taste in sandals, but to demonstrate how nice the weather has been.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Washing Machine?

Von- keep up the good work of making your kids do their own laundry . You are a credit to motherhood as I , obviously, am not!
Tomorrow, we have friends who are coming for the day. I was baking a lemon meringue pie ,when I realized that the fridge was full and I would have to turn on the small fridge to store the pie. I called to my older son to bring an extension cord and to plug in the fridge, "but" I said " plug it into the outlet where the washer is and not the outlet where the dryer is plugged in. " He looked me strait in the eye and asked "Which one is the washer?"

Pictures are of pie in small fridge, and 16 year old who is focused on x box and doesn't know the difference between a washer and a dryer!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

A picture of Ash and some sort of related bits.

Here, for your enjoyment is a picture of Ashleigh ( I really, really have to learn how to do that clickable link thing) . I took this picture back in September when Cheryl and I met Barbara and Ashleigh in Amsterdam and we went out for dinner at the Hardrock Cafe. I have been wanting to post this picture since I took it- because I think it is a really pretty picture of Ashleigh. I also want to mention ,once again, that I had a fab time the time we were in Amsterdam and that the dinner with Cheryl, Barbara and Ashleigh was the "dot on the i " this is a translation from German and sounds stupid in English ,but you know what I mean. The second reason for posting this picture is that I am going to have to use "old" pix until I can figure out how to reformat the memory chip/card in my camera- or buy a new one. The one in there is full and I am not sure which will come first, either I will figure out the reformat thing or I will give in drive to Media Markt , where they can hopefully, tell me what I need. P.S. for Ash. The Valentine's cakes you made yesterday- too cute!

I had planned a picture of the flowers my husband managed to send me from The Congo. I was feeling a little weepy yesterday- which is getting close to being my standard state- when I got home from the Dr (again!) the box with the flowers was waiting on my doorstep. I promptly burst into tears. I didn't think he would manage , as I know that he has had problems with his internet connection.
Yesterday , I read a lot of blogs and comments about how Valentine's day is so commercial and we should show our love to our.. well.. loved ones every day. While I totally agree with this and I also believe in spreading Valentine's around- it is not just for couples- I want to wish everyone a happy Valentine's Day.
I have another take on it as well. Sometimes, I am glad for the "commercialism" of the day as it gives me the kick in the butt to sit down and send some ecards- let people know that I am thinking about them. This can only be good- right? Also, my husband is home so seldom that I never expect him to clean the bathroom ( he was a great diaper changer though) and while I don't place a value on myself based on if I receive flowers on Valentine's Day or not , it is nice to know that my husband was/is thinking of me.

On a whole different front- I just spoke with a physical therapist and have an appointment for a check up and a private Nordic Walking lesson. I have to do this. I need to lose weight. I need to exercise, I need to get out of the house and I need more fresh air.