Whoops, I did it again….

Lake Geneva 10/17/2020

I’m so sorry I confused everyone yesterday. I’ve been rushing . I am so happy that I am going virtual to Rhinebeck. Allison, and Karen and I have met up on line . The vendors are great. My class is at 1 pm and I have back to school jitters.

Let’s just forget yesterday’s post. The cactus photo was taken in Oklahoma and they have a whole different type of bloom than the ones we saw in Zion national park . The zion cactus blossoms , also prickly pear, were like delicate roses.

In All likelihood I will add those faux fur pompoms to this hat . I was going to give it to my friend Mark, from McDonalds, but I fear it is too small. It will keep someone quite warm; I am sure of that. Trying to use too small a needle for the normal yarn gauge means DISASTER for my arms, fingers, elbows. Over. This hat is OVER.

I used some irish yarn Al gave me for the brim and then started with the Red that I won from Hand Eye Crafts, Hunks and Chicks Game. ! Thank you Kim. It is so very Midwest winter wish! It was Lambs Pride worsted Brown sheep for the red . I do love it.

BUT! My big mistake is that I forgot I do not put red next to white or cream for fear it will bleed. Dang. This one better not. I ve heard all the chatter about cold water only etc. and I have had reds bleed anyhow. I’ll wash it by hand and wash the big red part first.

I have learned so much at Rhinebeck. I think the coordinators deserve huge thanks.

Okay. Gotta go.

One little gem from the Festival: someone claimed, someone with authority , mind you, that we don’t need to carry our floats when knitting Fair isle…..WHAT? This can’t be true..but if it is …oh boy!

True of False:

Below are asome recent photos. This is a quick quiz! Have fun!

One of these things is not like the others,

(true or false)

One of these things just doesn’t belong

Can you guess which thing is not like the other?

Before I finish this song? (Sesame Street crediT)

Next Question:

THe Hat I am knitting has a major flaw in it. True or false , it is the colors I choose.

Next Question:

I’m loving Rhinebeck and feel ilke I am on a bit of a vacation?

Next Question:

THe red Breasted Nuthatch was brought to rehAB YESTERDAY after flying into a large picture window.


Every single flower Regina sent me has become a joy to see flower here. Val’s seeds too!


Karen and I are going to VIrtual Rhinebeck now. I won’t buy anything.

Hugs to you all!

Warning , Very Very Long Post

October, you are giving us some glorious days to enjoy alone, or with just another person. Fireman and I went on a hike yesterday. The trail was steep in areas. I was having some back pain. Fireman thought we should turn around, but I felt it would ease up when we got on level ground. Thankfully , it did .

Are you laughing? Wisconsin is not terribly mountainous, but there are some areas where you get a good workout with a climb. Our elevation gain: 500 ft. If you go to Peninsula State Park , in Door county, north of Green Bay, you will find some tricky climbs on their bluffy trails. Anyhow, we found a grove of huge, really huge, pine trees on this part of the Ice Age Trail; Bald Bluff. They were so tall we couldn’t even try our true measuring stick guide. They were easily 70 or more feet tall. Under them, a lovely soft blanket of orange pine needles.

Chicago is under a high fire risk this week. This is the time of year Mrs. O’Leary’s cow and all that started the horrible Chicago Fire. Things here are even dryer, I believe. Throughout the summer promised storms skirted us and headed to the Illinois border many times. I watered and watered and watered my tomatoes, squash, flowers and trees. I baby my young trees. They are costly and I want them to grow. I grew the clover patch for the nitrogen it would give the soil. We cut the last green clover leaves today and made mulch with them for the willow trees , the old forest trees, and the pine trees that are just wee babies. I did plant some clover by each of about 18 trees in spring. I hope that is going to nourish them as winter arrives.

Our friends in Fort collins Colorado, are getting inundated with smoke and the fires are inching

closer to them. I must paint a rock for them and put it by St. Francis. I keep finding people to write names on the rocks. I feel better once I have done this. I like this new habit, or ritual …..as Honore might call it .

Oops , I forgot to tell you about the first photo of this post. The falling down shed. My husband finally asked someone who farms ,why those out buildings remain as they seem dangerous. The answer , I think Nancy confirmed this already, is they are worth a lot in old wood. But no one wants to pay the farmer to take the wood. So they stand until they fall . I find some of them interesting and even pretty. My sister is always looking for things to paint for her classes . I ‘ll offer her this one.

I covered the cosmos with pillow cases this afternoon. And the marigold like zinnias and mexican paint flowers too. I want them to last until Day of the Dead. Zach’s Birthday …and I want my neighbor Sydney to keep enjoying them for another few days or weeks. Whatever mother Nature deems.

There has been knitting . Really, there has. I’ve cast on for a shawl with my Berroco Remix. But the big news, is that I have been to Rhinebeck!!! It is virtual this year and Al and I and our friend Karen all get to “go”.

This morning I attended a vendor event. A couple in Michigan make beautiful needles and they are hexagonal for joint relief and great slipping for speed. They make a cable needle that spins so the wire will not get twisty on you. They are called : Indian Lake Artisans.

Allison and Karen and I are all set for tomorrow afternoon’s big event: Show me Your Rhinebeck Sweater. It is our highlight you tube of the last few years. I get completely caught up in the sweaters, the yarns, the fun of it . I can’t wait!

I entered the photo contest and just made the time entry. I hope.

There are some other vendors I hope to see virtually tomorrow. Karen likes the Sheep Incognito store, so I will go there tomorrow too.

On Sunday I signed up for a class on making shawl pins with metals . I really hope I can do it. I didn’t feel like taking a yarn knitting class. I wanted to sign up for the electric spinning class. It was full. Then I googled electric spinners and oh boy. They are about 1500 dollars and up. What?????? I think I’d only be able to justify that with opening a shop of my own! Have you seen these things?

So much going on! Fireman is trying to winterize the screen porch . That would be so fun. The juncos have returned and I am not pleased. The nuthatches are back too. They are so bold. The red breasted is so small and will NOT leave the feeder if you approach. So , I think I have a good photo to share soon.

And, Finally, the Election is coming up.

Yes, I know you know. I continue to write postcards for voter encouragement.

I just want to share that some people don’t realize they can vote in a state they were not born into. I heard a story about a new dentist who moved to WISCONSIN before another election . She was very sad to find out she could have voted in Wisconsin since she was a resident in Dairy Land now. IF you aren’t sure about voting in any way, call your local government and they will tell you! YOUR VOTE Matters!!!

On my gosh it is 12:30 a.m. Time for me to turn in. Thanks for the time you took to read the post.

Back up…Let’s Back Up

Okay, for everyone who didn’t understand my clear as mud, tree measuring instructions:

Google: Arthur Temple College of Forestry and they will show you how we did the tree estimate measuring. This way I get to show you more autumn tree colors in our part of the…woods. Bump bah…..

Oh gosh, I don’t recall if I showed you the after photo of the shawl that got ruined in the wash after our OKC trip. It was all ripped and knotted at the rip point. Well, I took out my crochet hook, and this is when crochet beats knitting hands down. I crocheted the ripped section and the entire edge to the inside of the big loop that was the shawl.

See? The dark blue area became the new edge with the light blue ripped area getting securely hidden inside and all the way around. Then I crocheted the other end closed and stuffed it. It makes an awesome pillow! I had to save it. I love the cotton /blend yarn. It might be remix ?

Okay, it is our last 70 degree day for a longtime. We are off to do a little hike. It is supposed to be a tad difficult…….I promise I’ll be careful. And if you haven’t seen the cougar chasing the runner, In Utah, yes……it is scaredy stuff. That momma cougar makes some amazing moves…….she’s protecting those babies of hers. I don’t think we will encounter cougars. But I now know how to act if we do. Oh forget that…I’m bringing a nerf gun …..or rocks in my pocket.

Have you repaired anything lately in your craft world?

More Math Today, but no QuiZ!

A. Short Lesson. Optional . Skip to B for Knitting.

Here we are, Fireman and I , measuring the height of a tree. Unbeknownst to me, Fireman has known this math magic, for a long time. Hence, he can fall a tree with confidence that it will go where he wants it to. We have taken down at least 15, or 16, trees since we bought the house and the forest 4 years ago.

So , just like there are tricks in knitting, (tell me yours later!) , there are tricks, important ones, in forestry.

I’ll explain in a way, that you WILL have to go back and you tube it for sure if you plan to take a tree down soon. So you take a straight item, and you put it next to your eye. (we are talking a broom handle or pipe).

Then you point the end at the base of the tree and move your hand at the same time. Eyeball, haha, the place your hand slid to.

Then you flip the stick so the shortest part is like this:

And you walk forwards until the tip of the tree top is at the measuring sticks’ top. THen make a Mark on the ground by your foot where you stopped walking when you saw the treetop . Then you take a measuring tape and measure the distance from where you ended up standing , to the tree trunk. That will give you a good estimate of a tree’s height. Ours came to 40 feet.

If you are a pioneer or someone in the Donner Party, (just kidding I’m not going there) you can use another formula with your foot stride , that will give you an estimate as well. (Because A pioneer might not have a magnetic measuring tape.)

Who knew? Go measure something….


I am in denial about no more paddle boarding. Fireman and I could try it, today. Fireman says no, we are done. It is only 61 out, but sunny and we could dress warmly. THe winds are 20 mph. That’s the trouble. He says leave it that our last paddle over the weekend was undeniably our best, longest and quietest. Well ,even if we don’t go On the lake, I want to sit by it . And…knit by it.

C. So Rhinebeck starts this week. ! I am going to go to a virtual event at some point. Al told me SHOW ME YOUR RHINEBECK SWEATER goes live at 4 pm chicago time on Thursday. THat’s my favorite part of Rhinebeck. But, you can catch reruns of it on you tube for a long time. So , if you have to miss it at 4, fear not.

D. These little flowers are so great for fall. And for our Day of the Dead plans!

E. I am knitting. I really have been. No big shock here, I’m ditching Stevie shawl. I’ve cast on and knitted to the 18th Row or so, 4 times, and I give up around there each time. Why? I don’t honestly know. I think it is too much with those size 15 needles. I feel like I am struggling with every stitch over the wire and the needle. It has yet to feel smooth. I love the yarn, and I will knit with it. But, there was this sweater in Oklahoma’s yarn shop and I want to knit it.

I can’t get her out of my mind. It is a trick the knitting gnomes play on me. I’m going to call them and purchase the pattern and yarn , I think……

F. Here’ s my knitting trick:

I never cast on stitches in sections for double point needle set ups. I always cast all 48, Say for socks, on one needle. I work one row and can see when I then divide them and join, that they are not twisted. Please share any tip. Everyone seems to have one that somebody hasnt heard of yet! THanks.

Saturday Panic…..

I have started a winter hat and am using oatmeal colored yarn and some Lambspride in dark red. I may be changing needles soon, because I think I Went down too much and the yarn is hard on my hands at this rate.

I love the way this photo turned out. How Did I achieve this magnificence? Well, you must have a husband who simpy will NOT stop for photos very often. THis means you have to click on the fly. THe way the smoke and farmers’ dust from harvest were in the sky, really gave this a spooky look. I love it. It is undoctored and just shot like sepia.. LOve when that happens.!

So many of my blog pals are very good at stitching. These framed samplers are on sale at a off site auction this weekend. I’m not sure how I feel about this. Ond hand , if you wanted samplers, lucky you. THey are going for next to nothing. On the other hand someone worked so hard on this part of their creativity. It is almost insulting to see them sent off. What do you thini? Ive have a mind to rescue one…..

Then this blue Turkey , in glass showed up at the auction. Do I need a blue Turkey? I don’t think so. He’s a beautiful TOM as my Nana would say.

If you have not seen the Barkely Marathons on you tube, or some available channel, it is a wild movie. I highly recomment it. AL’s trying to get me to watch Shits Creek starting at season 3. She says, just figure it out from there.

Amy Beth, the Fat squirrel Speaks podcaster, spent a ton of time on her latest podcast on quiilting. Val and Nancy and Deb, I thought of all of you. She gives a lot of information , so It was not quite what I go to her podcasts for but she is so enjoyable to listen to , I didnt mind. She’s talking about making a quilted car jacket in a really cool shape! You may like it

She listens to a podcast called Almost Amish and Im’ going to give it a try.

FInally, I had something happen to me yesterday that made me feel good. I had asked for more addresses to help get out the vote, and they sent me more. Of the 20 I said I could get done by tomorrow, one of them had a Burnham Court Address in Texas. My mom and Dads house just sold …on Burnham Court in Illinois. I saw it as a sign from my mom. ALso , we heard an interview in Oklahoma, where someone said,
“donkey years ago”. My Grandma, My irish nana used to say that! She too has been present in obvious ways this week.

Ok. KNitting today. 1) Getting my leaf Cape back from Local LYS that didnt sell. 2)Keeping all Windows open and getting in the sun for perhaps a last time this season …..before it goes into the 60s. 3)Talking to my kiddos. 4) sunset paddle????

Every Waking Moment

I tried to make a video. Sorry. It didn’t work out. My learning curve with this will get better. But, it is 70s, windy, sunny and I’m headed outside to help fireman with the trees. We are taking at least one down.

Had to share this plate I saw yesterday. And I had a sad cat story about a stray, but just know that a good samaritan helped out .

I have a bucket list in my head. I think I will write it down. But here are some of mine:
Meet more of you.

Go to the 911 Memorial in New York and Shanksville PA.

GO to RHinebeck with Al and Karen

Go to More National Parks

See the Northern Lights

(oh and with my binoculars the other night, I was able to read that I Saw: M13, the Great Hercules Cluster around 8 pm here. I also saw Mars. To my surprise they looked like silver disco balls because they sparkled so much!

I am not giving up on paddleboarding. This is how glassy and calm the Lake was at 11 am. yesterday. We paddled farther along the shore, than ever before. IT was heavenly. I hope to get two more paddles in. THe water temp is 62, so If we tipped in, as long as we are close to shore we would be cold, but not dead!

Here’s the truth.. THe Pumpkins are ready in the fields.

As for knitting , I”m making a fair isle hat . And I’ve casted on a shawl. And I need to make a Halloween something. And I have to go help Fireman now. I wont let him fall the tree unless I’m there with him.

You are great pals to read my blog. Im honored

Very Fast Post

Dear Cosmos,

Again you have outdone yourselves. What is it with our relationship that works every time? You don’t seem to tire of my chatting, (Fireman asked me who I was talking to in the garden yesterday) . You bloom into October, late. You make such pretty colors. And you are 99 cents a package. I do think I splurged and bought two packages at Home Depot last spring. Thanks. You keep going. You are a marvel.

Dear Knit and Crochet Pals,

I hope to pick up the needles later today. I haven’t had time to knit a stitch since the car ride home On Monday. Those trips are so great but they are a time taker. All the before set up, all the back home laundry, mail, email, and now there is the bug invasion. The orange not nice lady bugs are back. There are , I am not kidding, at least a thousand in the house. They bite. Fireman is walking around with a vacuum at least once an hour. We didn’t have this quantity in Illinois. They don’t stay long.

Dear Debate Watchers,

I m in love with a girl named Kamala. I was talked into doing phone calls for Wisconsin Dems last night and have since changed my mind. I just want to do more postcards. So , I’m starting the akward text to the nice guy who wants to give me and many others zoom instructions today at 4.

Dear Covid

Die. Just Die. We are so tired of you.

Good Humor

I’m in no way dismissing the state of our country with this post. You know that. But , I felt some humor may be needed. Even when people are grieving a death, of a loved one, they laugh at memories , right? My big old loud family, (Fireman continually reminds me that the R–t side has no volume control whatsoever and we shout raucusly at one another) laughs at wakes and funerals. Hmmm, My Big Old Loud Family……sounds like a good movie title.

Good humor also came in the way of a ice cream truck ,back when. I remember the ice cream being …okay. We were snobs. Loud laughing snobs:we had a 31 Flavors Baskin Robbins less than a mile walking distance away. From the truck though, I think I usually got a chocolate coated thing on a sick with a fudgy middle and peanuts. It was vanilla icecream. YOU?

At Baskin Robbins Thirty one Flavors, I got chocolate mint, chocolate chip or cookie dough.

The thing about the Ice Cream Truck, was someone who drove it was always just a shade away from Creepy. I wrote a poem about it . I’ll dig it out if anyone wants.

So One of you told me YEARS ago, that when the truck music started, their mother told them, that meant they were out of ice cream. THat borders on cruelty. What A clever mom, though, I have to give her credit. ALso, these trucks always made the rounds right before dinner. THe thing that fascinated me most was the change belt.

I felt the presence of my mother and grandmother a lot, in Oklahoma CIty. I wasn’t looking for them. Here is an empty alcove for a Saint, at a church we walked by. THere was an empty alcove at Old St. Pat’s (the oldest church in Chicago), that we used to go to for Mass. My mom always said, that empty space was for my husband. SHe loved me to pieces, but she loved Troy for loving me. St. Troy. Overall, I have to agree.

THere was little laughter and many tears as we drove home On Monday. However, when we pulled in, after making good time, (and yes I did pee in the car to keep our covid gas station stops minimal…it was easy. I’ll tell you how. You take a plastic grocery bag and line it with lots of paper towels. Then You carefully hold the front and back of the bag and you pee. THe paper towels absorb most of it. No spillage. Then you tie a knot in the bag and throw it out later. Men, have it so much easier. GIve them an empty wax coffee cup and lid and they can go from there.) Oh, sorry. But, I think it is useful information .

Anyhow when we pulled in there was a box on the porch. From Kim. From her Hunks and Chicks contest! I won some fun prizes. Look, look at the reds and oranges in the yarns she sent!!! Oh they are destined for hats I think. Maybe a shawl? She also sent me the goodies I get giddy about: a notepad that says THINGS TO DO BEFORE I CAN KNIT

She sent a cool pen

See? She sent two patterns, lotion, that adorable Cat pen, a new keychain!!. Okay, so how did she know I needed a new keychain? Tea too! Kim, your timing was impeccable.

Allison and WIll do not pose for photos together. They just don’t. So while they cooked for us Friday night, I took some video and clipped some shots. This one with WIll and the Kniife is downright hysterical. Will, nearly lost his thumb to a bad stove burn awhile ago. His body looks like a monster walk and the knife in his hand….well c’mon it is Halloween time. I thought it was classic Will and Al. THey love to laugh, and they have “produced” some very funny bits together, just for family.

While drying my tears Monday on the truck ride home, I listened to a podcast that made me laugh. I”d love you to give it a listen. If you don’t get the podcast thing, here’s my take on it.

If you have a cell phone there is a button to touch that has what looks like an “i” with circles around it. The backround is purple. Touch it. It is free. Go to the search magnifying glass and type in: The Mortified Podcast March 14, 2020 . Listen to episode 185: Horse Girls. The first few minutes are not that funny. But as it goes on…..you will laugh out loud. The one I recommend is only 35 minutes long. IT gets funny at the 7th minute so you can just start there.

Mo Rocca has a good podcast. Mobituaries is the name of his podcast. He is an excellent story teller. He will make you laugh.

Al has suggested most of the podcasts I listen to, oh, and Zach suggests goodones too. I love to knit to them. Here’s WIll, Al, and FIreman.

ONe funny thing happened in OKc that Will shared with us. Apparently at WHOLE FOODS, while he was shopping, and masked, two ladies discovered they were pushing carts that were not their own. Will found this really funny. Then he realized HE was not pushing HIS cart either. That made him laugh even harder. Have you ever swapped carts? I think people did it with the firemen when they shopped so they could hit on the firemen. Women got all giddy around the fireman who were looking for their food for dinner. What were these women thinking? Filet on sale, or chat it up with some woman, who doesnt realize she’s shopping in her slippers.

I hope I made you laugh:
here’s a few other sources of laughter:

The series that Sara Silverman filmed a few years ago called: America, I love you.

Off to finish my postcard writing for the Democrats. THey are due in the mail today and I have to finish ten of them.

What’s making you laugh?