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Friday, December 15, 2017

Just Stopping by...

I had a few photos I wanted to share with you all.  I just finished Marilyn's blanket, literally 10 minutes ago, and popped it in the washer on delicate so I thought I would show you a few precious things I've received recently and a surprise when I went downstairs to the laundry room.

First the surprise.  It's snowing!  It just started and I really thought it was going to pass us by because it was supposed to arrive during the night and didn't.  Oh well.  I don't have to go anywhere and it's so pretty to watch falling.
 As you can still see the grass peeking through, it has obviously not been coming down very long.
 This is a beautiful Christmas card by my sweet friend Sharon in Australia.  Her blog is on my sidebar as "Calligraphy Cards - Shaz in Oz".  She is an amazing lady and makes the incredible cards.  I've put this into a shadow box frame and intend to leave it out year round.  Each of those tiny details were made by her own sweet hands.  Just lovely.
This is a sweet little monster made by Mere's friend in honor of her daughter who was killed in a car accident.  Doesn't he make you smile?
This sweet little angel is the newest to join our tree.  She was my gift at the ladies Christmas tea and ornament exchange at church last Sunday. Isn't she beautiful?  I collect angels and love every one.
Our star tree topper was bought by Dennis' parents the year he was born.  They gave it to us the first year we were married because she bought a new one.  It has proudly graced our own tree for 39 Christmas's.  It's not fancy but we love it.
Jamie made this angel ornament when he was five in Sunday school.  It has hung at the top of the tree ever since, right under the star for 29 Christmas's now.
That's about it for today.  I'm at the strange stage for me, of only having a pair of socks and a scarf on the needles.  I don't feel like working on either, so maybe I'll start a scrap toddler blanket.  What do you think?  Well, maybe I should turn the heel on the sock so it's ready for mindless round and round knitting if I go somewhere.

Thank you for the sweet well wishes.  The doctors office called this morning and since nothing has changed, improved or worse since starting antibiotics I'm to check in with them Monday unless I get noticeably worse and then go to E.R.  Luckily, I'm a homebody and don't mind staying home at all.  I'm watching podcasts, and Hallmark movies and enjoying my nice warm house.  I do appreciate the prayers and sweet messages you all have sent me this week.

I hope all of your holiday plans are coming together and that you take the time to remember to include Jesus, as He is the reason we're celebrating the day at all.

"Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen." Ephesians 4:29

Blessings always,
Betsy

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Homebound

Good Morning!  It's another dreary winter day.  A little more snow fell overnight and the clouds look like they're ready to dump even more although the weatherman says it won't.  We usually have crisp blue skies in the winter, but we're under what is called an "inversion" this week which is keeping it cloudy.  Bleh.  I haven't been feeling well either.  A trip the doctor yesterday and some antibiotics given so here's hoping I'll perk up soon.  All I want to do is go from the bed to my knitting chair.  I'm sure glad I got Christmas all done early this year. :-)  I have a few things to show you but not much knitting so here goes.

Since it's been over a week since I last posted I have some photos to share. Lots of photos. Dennis and I had a "date night" to Coeur d'Alene, Idaho last Tuesday after work and we walked all around the resort.  My photos aren't very good but they'll give you an idea of the beautiful lights.  It was so COLD!

Santa came flying in with his reindeer.  They twinkled on and off and actually looked as if they were flying.  Up, up and away!
 This sign for 2017 was at least 30 foot across.  I didn't know how to get a good perspective of it's size for you.
 One of the parking garages!
 The clocktower by the lake.  The trees light up the beachfront.
 These were taken on the boardwalk on the lake itself.  The docks were all lit up with dozens of huge displays. We couldn't walk very far on the boardwalk because it was icy from frost with the water underneath.


 I sure wish I had been able to get better photos for you, but I wanted to give you an idea of the scope of these displays.  They are massive.
 Then we went inside the resort itself to warm up a bit.  This wreath was wider than our garage door at home.  At least 15 foot across! Where do they get ribbon that wide?
 Up close on one of the beautiful trees in the lobby.

 Across the street at the  Shops at Coeur d'Alene, there were beautiful displays too.
 That green and white box is taller than I am and I'm 5'10"!
 This was where the line formed to get on the huge boats that take people out to Santa's village.  There are light displays all around the lake, which is HUGE!  Santa calls out each child's name and it's so exciting.  However, we couldn't get tickets. It's sold out for the entire month.  There were people dressed at Snowmen, toy soldiers and elves to entertain the people while they waited to board the boats.
Now for the little bit of knitting/crochet I've completed.  I've made two pairs of Kathyb's wrist warmers this week for my friend Jenny and a co-worker of hers. Their offices are quite cold and so I told them I would make them wrist warmers.  These are for Anne.  She chose Knit Picks Stroll Tweed in "Farmhouse Heather".
 These are for Jenny who chose Knit Picks Stroll Tonal in the "Pansy" colorway.  Thank you for this great pattern Kathy.  It knits up so fast!  I made each of these pair in less than a day.  These lavender ones are the same size, I don't know why they photographed with one shorter than the other.
 
I've also been working off and on on this blanket for Marilyn.  I love the pale yellow and hope she likes it too.
I did make a couple of dishcloths and gave them away.  I think I'm forgetting something else too but I'll think of it later after I publish this post. :-)

I'm going to leave you with some pictures of Miss Piper.  Santa came to her house to see her and she was SO excited.  This is the very same Santa who used to come visit her Daddy and his brothers, Brian and Bill when they were small.  How neat is that? I love this picture.  He left her a sparkley snowflake with LED lights to put in the window on Christmas Eve so he's sure to remember that's her house! :-)
 Here is Santa, Piper and her Daddy. 
They all went to a local nursery to see the displays last weekend that we used to visit when we lived in Omaha.  I love the happy faces.
Well, my friends.  I'm tired and I'm heading for my knitting chair.  I'm really not enjoying being under the weather at all.

I hope you're all having a great December and are ready to celebrate our Saviour's birth.  I also hope you can all slow down and remember the reason we're celebrating this season of joy.

"Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; His love endures forever." 1 Chronicles 16:34

Blessings always,
Betsy

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

COLD....

Happy Tuesday Morning everyone!  It's turned cold here the past few days.  Brrrr.  We were supposed to get several inches of snow Saturday night but it bypassed us, thankfully, and covered the mountains around us instead.  This picture was taken about a block from our house.  I dread the day when they decide to "improve" this area and develop it into something.  They have cut so many trees down near us to build yet another storage facility.  Personally, I think we all have too much "stuff" anyway and they are destroying all of this beauty in the name of progress.  Oops!  I better jump down from this soapbox now.  Excuse me for a moment while I try to crawl down without hurting myself.  :-)
Sophie went home with her Mom and Dad Sunday night.  They had a lovely cruise to Mazatl├ín and Cabo San Lucas.  Another cruise is planned for February and Sophie will be back for another visit with Chloe.
We had an ordination at church on Sunday.  Chad was ordained as the new youth pastor.  He is a wonderful young man that we've known for almost 25 years.  He has a wife and two sweet babies.  You can't see Dennis because of this angle, but he is right behind the guy on the left front.  That's Troy, our senior minister whom we've also known for almost 25 years.  He was the youth pastor when our boys were in high school and he and his wife are great friends of Mandy.  We met both of these men when we moved to Spokane and Chad was just a young boy.  Dennis has been an Elder of the church here for 24 years and before that was in leadership at the church we attended in Omaha.  It's always wonderful to see young people grow and learn to serve the Lord.
 Thank you Sherri for the sweet card and this precious ornament you crocheted for me.  It is hanging on the tree right now.  It sparkles so pretty in the light.  I love the sparkley gold yarn that you used.
 Debbie sent another wonderful package of soap and lotion bars along with card she made that I can now share with someone else.  This woman's talent knows no bounds and she generously shares her lovely creations.  I really like the lotion bars as they keep my dry hands from snagging on yarn.
I tried very hard to get a good picture of the moon the other night.  It was stunning!  But no matter how many photos I took, they were blurry and then the clouds began to cover it.  Well, I think it's still pretty, isn't it?
Four more hats were finished for the hospital nursery.
 A baby blanket that I've been working on in November is also done.  I finished another identical one earlier in the month of November but forgot to take a picture and it's already been delivered to the Crisis Nursery to keep a baby warm.
 I finished another Fibi shawl pattern by Taci.  This was using Knit Picks City Tweed DK.
 The three colors I used were Snowshoe, Plush, (light purple) and Morning Glory, (darker purple).
 After blocking it is well over 5 1/2 foot long!  It's so cushy and snuggly and I absolutely love it!  I'm still deciding whether to keep it our give it away but I think it will be a gift for Christmas.  I hope you all get a copy of this pattern and knit it.  It's a very easy and intuitive pattern using the seed stitch.
I finished 3 more pair of mittens for the school kids on Sunday afternoon and evening while watching Hallmark movies.  I am addicted to the Hallmark movies.
 Yesterday I started a new blanket for Marilyn, Mandy's mother-in-law.  She is such a sweet lady and very good to Mandy and Piper. She's really been a great support while Mandy was so sick, etc.  Of course, she's Grandma to Piper too and adores that little girl.  We have become friends and I thought she might like a blanket to wrap up in during the cold Nebraska winter.  It's not a Christmas gift, it's a "just because" gift.  :-) You can't tell very well, but this is a lovely pale yellow yarn with a cream border.  Yellow is her favorite color.  Michaels had Impeccable yarn on sale for 3/$5 yesterday in a flash sale.  I bought all of the yellow they had but it wasn't enough.  The sales girl suggested I look online.  It was in stock there, so I bought 6 more skeins at the same price!  With shipping and taxes it was still less than the normal price for 3 skeins!  I felt like I really got a wonderful deal.  It will be here next week and whatever I don't use for the blanket will be used for mittens because it's the same yarn I use for them.
Life is wonderful, but life can also be difficult.  Many people are suffering this year and the holidays are hard for them.  That was brought into the forefront yet again this morning with an email I received when I woke up, about the difficulties a dear friend is going through.  My own brother-in-law is fighting cancer for the second time this year.  All caused by the anti-rejection drugs he has to take from his liver transplant.  It's terrible for him and my sweet sister Melanie and their kids.  One of my brothers had a skin cancer removed last week from his hand.  Another blog friend sent an email earlier in the week with a list of many, many family members who are very sick with life threatening things.  I know many of you have lost parents and family members during the past year and this holiday season of "firsts" is SO, SO hard.

I just want each of you reading this to  know that I am going the throne room of Heaven for each one of you.  Every time I hear of a need that one of you has, I write it in my prayer notebook and I REALLY DO pray for each of the things that you mention every single day.  Whether you ask me specifically to pray for you or not, I pray anyway.  Because I know that that's the least and the BEST thing that I can do for each one of you.

I don't want to end this on a down note, but I do know that the holiday season can be very, very difficult and I wanted you all to know that I am here for you.

I do hope that you each have a wonderful day today.  Much love from me to you!

"There is no one holy like the LORD: there is not one besides you; there is no Rock like our God.
1 Samuel 2:2

"For I am the LORD your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you." Isaiah 41:13

Blessings always,
Betsy

Friday, December 1, 2017

Fun Questions

My friend Dee at "Pointy Little Sticks" blog over on my sidebar had these questions on her blog last week and they were lots of fun.  I thought it might be a wonderful way to get to know my friends that visit me here on my blog.  If you have time, and I know that's a short commodity, especially in December, but...if you have time, would you play along?  I'll include my answers too.  Have fun!

1.What is your middle name?  Beth.  But my "real" first name is Mary, not Betsy. :-)  I've been called Betsy since I was a baby.  Dennis didn't know my real name until we got engaged.  I didn't know it until I had been in kindergarten for several weeks and the teacher thought I was ignoring her when she called my name.  I just didn't know what my name was!  :-)

2. What was your favorite subject at school?  History
3. What is your favorite drink?  Water or Diet Coke or Diet Pepsi
4. What is your favorite song at the moment?  "Amazing Grace" always
5. What is your favorite food?   DARK CHOCOLATE if that's considered food, otherwise pizza.
6. What is the last thing you bought?  Pizza for dinner last night with our Bible study group.
7. Favorite book of all time?  the Bible.  It has all you need to know in life.
8. Favorite Color?  lavender
9. Do you have any pets?  One.  Our rescued British lab, Chloe.
10. Favorite Perfume?  Japanese Cherry Blossom from Bath and Bodyworks.
11. Favorite Holiday?  Christmas

12. Are you married? Yes, to Dennis for 39 years last September.
13. Have you ever been out of the country, if so how many times?  Yes, many times.  Mexico, Honduras, Belize, Canada, France, England, Japan

 
14. Do you speak any other language? Nope
15. How many siblings do you have? Three siblings.  Two brothers and a sister all in Iowa.  They live within a few miles of each other.  I miss them.
16. What is your favorite shop?  Online-Amazon,  Sticks and Bricks-Hobby Lobby
17. Favorite restaurant? Applebee's
18. When was the last time you cried?  Within the last week.
19. Favorite Blog?: Too many to mention.  Please check out my sidebar to see my favorites.
20. Favorite Movie?  White Christmas
21. Favorite TV shows?  NCIS, (the original one)
22. PC or Mac?    PC, but I have an iPad too
23. What phone do you have? iPhone
24. How tall are you?  5'10"
25. Can you cook?  Yes.  I used to cook a lot, not so much anymore with just the two of us.
26. Do you have children?  If yes, how many?   Yes, 3.   Mandy, Jamie and Alex
I hope you enjoyed the questions and that you'll play along.  I've never done this kind of thing before but thought it might be a fun change of pace.  I hope you all have a lovely weekend.

"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast sprit within me." Psalm 51:10

Blessings,
Betsy



Wednesday, November 29, 2017

I'm back again!

Good Morning!  It snowed again last night but it's melting and I'm a happy girl about that!  There were a few things that I forgot to share on my last post so I thought I would pop in for a short visit today.

I made four Christmas dishcloths but have already given one away.  I really like using knitted dishcloths and find others usually do too.  The past couple of years I have had a basketful by the front door during December for anyone who visited to take one.  This year I slacked off and didn't get very many made.  Oh well.  I've been busy with other things. These are the three I have left but I'm giving one away today.


 I started another of Taci's Fibi (Phee-bee) shawls yesterday.  This time I'm using Knit Picks City Tweed DK and oh my goodness!  You can sure tell the difference when you use a quality yarn.  This is a fun and easy pattern to knit and this is my second one.  The first was a test knit for her and I'm sorry I didn't use a better yarn that time.
This yarn is 55% Merino Wool, 25% Alpaca,20% Donegal tweed.  It is wonderful to knit with.
It's not expensive, but it is oh, so cushy and cuddly.
 These are the three colors that I'm using
 Just look at how soft and plump it is!
I got my Knit Picks order last Friday and the City Tweed was included in it.  Here, let me snow you everything I received.  Merry Christmas to me!  (It is my Christmas gift from Dennis.) The first photo is a kit.  It's for the Beachcomber Shawl.  There were eight skeins of this Cot-lin yarn included in the kit.  I think it will be perfect for spring/summer.   I've never bought a kit before, but it was almost half the price of buying everything individually.  There was another color combination you could choose from too.  I think it was blues and beige but I'm not sure.  I loved these colors so much I didn't look at the other one very long. :-)
 Then, of course I bought sock yarn.  Lots of darker colors because the men in my family prefer darker socks over bright reds, yellows and purples.  Go figure!  Ha! Those two in the center are called "Skating Rink" and were on sale for less than $6.00 a skein.  I think it was $5.49.  That is a steal for a good Merino/nylon sock yarn.
 And here is the yarn that I'm using now for the Fibi shawl.
Gosh it was fun to open the box and touch all of this great yarn.  In my humble opinion, you can't beat Knit Picks for price and quality.  I just can't bring myself to pay $28+ for a skein of sock yarn from the yarn store.  It's great for people who can afford it.  I say, "go for it if you can!"  But I buy too much yarn to spend that much money.  Knit Picks is a great option for people like me.  Goodness!  I sound like a commercial don't I?  Oops.  Sorry.

I think that's it.  I'm having lunch with one of the young mom's from church today so I've got to get running. Still have to clean the bathrooms before I go.  Tomorrow is a ladies luncheon at church.  A couple of us provide lunch once a month for the senior ladies.  We have a great time of eating, talking and laughing.  For some of them it's the only time they get out with people besides church on Sunday and doctor appointments.  It's been very well received.  We were going to cancel for the winter months so they wouldn't have to worry about getting out in the snow, but every single lady asked us not to cancel.  So tomorrow is the day for November.  It's usually the third Thursday of the month, but this month it ended up being postponed until tomorrow.

I'm officially finished with Christmas preparations with the exception of buying two gift cards and the actual dinner preparation on that day.  Cards and packages have all been mailed and now I can just enjoy the season.  I love that.  I enjoy going to the mall and people watching in December.

I'm rambling aren't I?  That's what happens when you spend so much time alone!  Ha!  I think that's my signal to say "adios" for today or "jaa nee" which is "see you" in Japanese!

Genki de,  (take care of yourself), and I'll be back soon.  (Don't ask me why I got on a saying goodbye in Japanese kick.  I'm strange like that sometimes.)

"Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good: His love endures forever." 1 Chronicles 16:34

Blessings,
Betsy

Monday, November 27, 2017

Let The Madness Begin...

Hello Everyone.

I hope that your Thanksgiving weekend was full of thankfulness if you live in the USA and celebrate it.  If you live elsewhere, I still hope you had a wonderful weekend full of thankfulness for all of your many blessings and all that you have.  We had a lovely day with Jeremy, Alicia and the boys and drove home to this view on the interstate.  I've never seen so little traffic.  The sun was setting behind us and storm clouds were to the east.  The golden hues were so pretty and the highway so empty.  It was almost other worldly.
 Apparently a big storm hit Spokane just before we arrived back in town.  We just missed the actual storm but saw the massive clouds.
When we decorated last week, the first thing set up was the Navity.  After all, Jesus is the entire reason Christmas is celebrated, so I always believe that the scene honoring Him should go up before the tree.
 I made this Navity set the first year we were married.  This is the 39th year it has been in our home.  Would you believe that three kids, a home daycare, three grandchildren, three dogs and three moves later, not one piece has been broken?  I love this scene and hope to pass it down to Mandy and then Piper someday.
The mystery knit is complete but I can't show it too you for awhile yet.  It took "ages" to finish but I love how it turned out.
 Our friends Kevin and Lana's granddaughter is moving back to Spokane in early December and she needs warm weather gear.  "I have a Waffle Hat" almost finished.  It will be done this evening.
 I also finished her scarf made from the same "I Love This Yarn" from Hobby Lobby.  It's the leftover yarn from my "Portage" sweater and I love how soft it is and it wears and washes very well.  The scarf is about six feet long.  I sure hope she likes it.
Sofie is back visiting while her Mom and Dad are on another cruise.  They left yesterday for the Mexican Rivera and will be back next Sunday.  Meanwhile, she's very at home here at our house.  This is her favorite place, all wrapped in a soft fleece blanket.
 When they brought her over Saturday night they had dinner with us and Nita gave me this sweet quilted wall hanging for the trailer.  She has one very similar.  A mutual friend made them for us.
 I always have a pot of flowers and watering can by the door of our trailer.  The watering can is for everyone's use and I thought it was sweet that our friend knew that and found a watering can button.
 A sweet little yellow dog button for Chloe.  How nice is that?
 I usually have flowers by the window inside too.  I was touched by all of the little extra details that personalized the wall hanging.  I will definitely find a place in the trailer for this sweet gift.
And last but not least, I won a gift from Patty who lives in Labrador, Newfoundland.  Look at all of this wonderful goodness.  Several different teas, yarn, scissors, a Canadian bear ornament, chocolate, a notions pouch and a project bag.  I can't believe how sweet it was of her to mail it all the way to me.
I went out this morning and finished most of my Christmas shopping.  We didn't do any over the weekend.  Crowds just aren't my thing.  Stocking stuffers for those who will be here have been purchased too. I only have a couple of gift cards to buy for gift exchanges we participate in and I'll be all done.  I even mailed my cards out last Friday!  I like to be done early and then I can enjoy the festivities without any stress.  Jamie and the kids will be here this year and then we're flying to Omaha in January to have a late Christmas with Brad, Mandy, Piper and the rest of our family there.

I hope you're all having a lovely day today.  We have bright sunshine and a warm-up. It was actually 41F when I was out this morning and it felt really good.

Oh, I almost forgot.  My cardiologist visit went really well last week.  I don't have to go back for a year unless something comes up.  I just do my remote pacemaker downloads from wherever I may be every three months. He was pleased with everything except my BP is pretty low.  That can't be helped though because the different medications I take for tachycardia lowers my BP.  Nothing can be done about it except take precautions like not driving and sitting or laying down when the light headedness hits me.  So all in all, it was good news.  Now I think we're done with doctors for awhile.  At least I really hope so!

I'll be back to visit again soon and I'll be visiting your blogs too!

"LORD, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done wonderful things, things planned long ago." Isaiah 25:1

Blessings always,
Betsy