Artichokes and Pink Martini

If you like artichokes, Pink Martini, knitting, then read on. If you are interested in the woes of losing the last 20 lbs or working in education, then read on. If you want to know what it's like to be an empty nester or to share that nest with to two dogs, then read on. If you want to know what the theme is for Monday night dinner, when the kayaks are going out, or who was at the Y at 5am, then read on. If none of this interests you, just hit the button that says "next blog", & read on.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Happy 29th B Day Paul!!!

My fabulous nephew Paul turned 29 years old today!! I know this for a fact because we are merely 10 years apart in age (making me 39 years old on my next birthday). Anyone who wants to dispute this fact may pay there own college tuition next term!

Knowing Paul's love for the depth, texture and high quality of PBR, I had to get him a "Hops Holster" stocked with his refreshment of choice. Doesn't he look ready to take on any construction project (just not in my house)?

Now you may not understand what this pose is all about, but I do. This is Paul's oh so subtle way of saying, "No Sandy, I do not need to meet you at the Y at 5 am tomorrow morning because, as you can see, my butt is totally buff." OK Paul, enuf said!

Yo, Steve (in Portland)

You may not know this but there is a great book out there called Knitting With Balls it just for guys. Even better, it's in stock at Powells, you do know where that is!?! If you're not brave enough to pick it up in person, they will let you buy it online! So please don't feel left out, you can come knit with us! Debbie, I expect to see you at Knit Purl with knitting in hand and a glass of champagne in front of you the next time I make the trek from Tacoma. Knit On!!! E me when you get a chance & we'll talk! BTW Debbie, I have nothing but respect for a woman who owns an Eeyore sweatshirt. You ROCK!!!!

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Hi Debbie & Steve in Portland!

Mitch blabbed and told me that you read every day. I feel honored. I hear you appreciate being updated on the exciting lives of my neighbors Eve & Eli. If ol' Mitchy would post some of his videos on You Tube, I could be really multi media. I apologize for the days that I miss. Sorry about the knitting thing too. It's a serious problem for me that I don't intend on getting help for. Did you realize that you have about 18 terrific yarn stores in Portland? You do, really! Knit Purl on 11th & SW Alder, Thursday nights, "Stitch and Sip" (that's knitting and Champagne, knirvana!)

Thanks for reading me & the next time I head to Portland we'll have to do Mother's Bistro & Bar (2nd & SW Stark) for dinner!

All Star Basketball

Today I was up and out early so I could get a good seat for the hottest game in town. Eli is the star of his 4 & 5 year old basketball team at the YMCA. And now for the play by play!!!!

Eli and his teammates discuss strategy before the first of their 2 12 minute games. Whew, how do they do it? It's good to be young and have lots of energy.

Eli's got the ball and is weighing all of his options. Hmmmmmm, is it time to make his move???

Yes, it is!!! He shoooots! He scorrrrrrrres!!!!!

Yikes! A pile up on the court and Eli (#4) is at the bottom of the pile! "I got it! I got it!!!" he yells. Eli is all about forcing a turnover.

Time for a water break.

Talk about break ... Eli takes off on one of his signature breakaways. Whoooosh, there he goes & no one can keep up with him!

The neighborhood gets older

Addie (short for Adorable) may not turn officially 1 until Tuesday, but she did get to dig into her birthday cupcake today. It was a full house of revelers, Grandparents from Portland and Texas, and baby group buddies. And then there were the OLD kids Eve (7), Eli(4) and Natalie (3) from the hood who were very helpful when it came to opening presents. Some of us can still remember Kyle and Tiffany before Addie's arrival. They used to have these Octoberfest parties where much beer was consumed and it would rock on into the wee hours. I think last October it broke up around 11pm. But it wasn't all their fault. Most of the party-goers had babysitters they promised would be home before midnight. My little one goes off to college so I am ready to party all night long & my neighborhood goes preschool on me. Sigh.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

A bit of knitting

Naomi, this one's for you. About a month ago I embarked on this challenging project. The Twisted Float Shrug. This is the center of the back and is ready for me to put in the armholes in the next round. wooooo hoooooo. This has been a whole lot of knitting and I have a ton of knitting to go. Yes you heard me right, armholes, that means sleeves, something new for me. I really, really loved the picture in Vogue Knitting. Hopefully, I will love it when it is all done.

And now for my traveling knitting project. Pat is walking me through knitting socks. I love these colors. So many knitters that I know love to knit socks. I am waiting for my passion for sock knitting to kick in. I am more into instant gratification knitting. So my current projects are a bit of a stretch for me.

Finally, what you have all been waiting for, the February Mystery Knitted Dishcloths. Red Hearts and a Pick Bumblebee. Cute, huh? I have some nice green yarn waiting for the March Mysterys. ooooOOOOooooo : )

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Pop Quiz!

We went on a great tour of Hollywood & Beverly Hills. Let's see if you can guess where we went!

An easy one to begin with. Which famous Hollywood landmark did Katie compare her hands and feet to those of Judy Garland?

Name the famous Barcelona Architect who designed this Beverly Hills home.

Katie spotted this one before anyone else could guess. Name the actress & movie who saved Richard Gere from his fear of heights.

What Bette Midler/Sarah Jessica Parker movie was set in this house?

Can you finish the words to this song (don't be afraid to show your age):

"They said, 'Californy is the place you oughtta be.'
So, they loaded up the truck and moved to Beverly.
Hills, that is, ..."

Encore! Encore!

And now for the real reason for the trip! A girl in a bubble, Megan Hilty, Glinda the Good in the Musical Wicked. She's an amazing Broadway actress, only 23 years old and from Bellevue, Washington.

The show was GREAT!!!

After the show, I dragged everyone to the stage door. Katie didn't complain. This is Kristoffer Cusick, he played Fiyero in Chicago back in November and now he's in Los Angeles. Seems I'm not the only stalker in the family.

Here's Katie with Eden Espinoza who played Elphaba. Eden still looks a little green. And for you dog lovers, she had her pooch with her. He looked strangely like a decendent of another very famous dog named Toto.

My favorite moment of the entire weekend and the reason that I take pictures and avoid being in pictures. Katie was great enough to introduce me to Megan, I was having a tough time forming words. Doesn't Megan look great, and Katie too! Who is that goofball in the middle? That would be me. Arghhhhh. Megan was very down to earth and generous with her time. She chatted with us and a couple of other fans for about 10 minutes. And though I am sure after two shows it had been a long day for her, she never gave the "I need to be somewhere else look". BTW, she will be playing Glinda in L.A. for the next 8 1/2 months. OoooooOOooooooohhhhhh!

Friday, February 16, 2007

Christmas in February!

For Christmas I gave Katie a present of Wicked Tickets in LA. Railene's husband Jason & Jill's hubby Loren thought I had a great idea (well duh) so they treated their lovely wives to the same! And away we go .....

Katie & Jill sip a bit of the bubbly in the back of a limo, the only way to navigate 5 o'clock rush hour on a Friday in L.A.

Good enough for the 2007 Golden Globes & the Oscar nominee's luncheon (just last week, drat we missed it) we decided to take a chance on the Beverly Hilton. Thank you Jason!

A view from our balcony. The weather was a balmy 85 degrees. Winter in the Southland.

This is our new BFF in BH. Casey the Amazing Concierge! She planned our weekend for us. Fabulous restaurants, shopping and a tour of Beverly Hills and Hollywood.

Top down on the convertible and away we go!

Friday, February 09, 2007

She loves him ... ?

This year I have been lucky enough to work with a great group of people. Travis is one of the para professionals that I work with. He also coaches the High School basketball teams. During halftime of tonight's basketball game he had a question that he needed to ask Liz, his girlfriend. She also works at our school.

He got a little help from the cheerleading squad.

Then the hard part was all up to him.

Wonder what her answer was?

Of course it doesn't hurt to have your very own cheering section.

The happy couple. Travis doesn't usually have dark circles under his eyes. Last night, he didn't get too much sleep.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Inspiration Leigh Radford

Last Sunday I took a class from Leigh Radford. I was so inspired by Leigh and the class, that I have been a knitting machine this week. I've had so many new ideas bumping around in my head that they have been pouring off of my knitting needles. These 3 short scarves have been the week's success stories.

Of course, I had to knit a green one first. The yarn is Paintbox and the needles were size 35. There is no pattern and mistakes are but a design element. How does it get any better than that?

Next I tried some Manos on size 19 needles.

Back to more Paintbox and those giant size 35 needles. Now I must admit, this a variation of a pattern for a ruffle scarf. But again, the occasional mistake is welcome. And for all of these projects I have to give credit to my partner in the creative process, my washing machine, the knitters best friend.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Eve's Shining Moment

We have a star among us. Dig that bright, gold trophy!!! Eve, 7 years old & in first grade, got her first letter to the editor published just last month. Now she has conquered the entire city of Tacoma. Her original story entitled "My favorite place" won in the K-2nd Grade Division. This means that she will compete in May at the state level. We are all routing for you Eve!!! You make the neighborhood proud!!! I know that someday I will be telling people I knew Eve Robinson before she was famous.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Dishcloth Adventures

Help! I've fallen into the 1950's and I can't get up!!!!

While I was at the Madrona Fiber Arts Retreat last weekend, I met another knitter (amazing!) named Zola. She told me about this really cool blog where they post intructions for knitting a dishcloth. Not too exciting, huh? Well the cool part is that they make it a mystery, posting only a few rows each day. You log on, knit the rows d'jour and then you wait in breathless anticipation for the next 24 hours for your next instructions. In a week or so you have a cool new dishcloth. Do I sound like June Cleaver yet?

Now the truly sad part. When I got home from the Retreat I jumped on the internet and found, not one but TWO different websites that feature Mystery Knitted Dishcloths. So guess what I did? You got it, I am now on the adventure of a lifetime, knitting TWO Mystery dishcloths.

This is a picture of day #1 of one of the dishcloths.

And now for day #2. I bet you can't wait to see the finished work of art emerge in just a few days. Stay tuned!!!