November 23, 2009

It's November already?!

I can't believe it's already the last full week of November and the holidays are about to knock on the door. I knew the holidays were coming and have been thinking about knitted gifts for a select few, but I'm still woefully unprepared.

Let's see, Sean and Erica are expecting a little boy, Gavin, soon. Her original due date was late January and pulled in to mid January, but with the latest appointment (baby's going into a head down position and 6.5 lbs) we're anticipating her going at the end of December.

Erin's still in school, working an on-campus job and just took on a seasonal job scanning tickets at Snoqualmie Summit. She'll be down at Thanksgiving, but with the ski season opening up soon, I imagine she may need to go right back. She's coming down with her boyfriend, David, and staying at her mom's but we'll see her a bit.

I've managed to knit a hat and scarf for a gift basket, but neglected to take pictures (Lame!). I've finished a scarf for a gift and will be casting on for a hat for someone else's gift.

I've continued to read - I'm up to 78 books for the year - and the reading has interfered with the knitting.

There are photos from 2 events on the camera in need of downloading and touch-ups before I send out copies to people.

But bible study is wrapping up and that will give me back a few hours on Sunday and Monday to get these other items done.

I need to get back into regular blogging. I'm spending a lot of time at Facebook (Hello, Farm Town. I'm looking at you). I need to shoot for a weekly update. That wouldn't be too much would it?

I just need to focus.

September 27, 2009

Getting stuff done

Am actually getting some knitting done lately! Finished these Natalya gauntlets for Erin, knitted in Pingouin yarn on size 8 DPNs. This is the second time I've knit these for her, but this time it's in a yarn that won't felt in the wash. The first pair didn't have the individual fingers like this pair and that's what she wanted this time.

Have other things going on:

* Finishing Mom's sweater
* Attending the Portland Sail for the Cure for Mom. She's coordinating the Sail in San Diego and I'm going to scout out how Portland does their set-up.
* Knitting a sweater for Khylee's upcoming 7th birthday
* Knitting something for Gigi's upcoming birthday
* Knitting a hat & gloves for the November Creative Exchange "Warm & Cozy" basket
* Knit Christmas gifts for 4 nieces and 1 nephew
* Knit a baby blanket for the new grandson, Gavin, due in January

Mixed in all of that is:

* Bible study through November
* Dental appointments
* Women of Faith in October
* Required time off in the October-December time frame (2 weeks!)

It's going to be busy! I'll just need to be focused and patient like Smudge and Tribble.

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August 08, 2009

Sock Summit!

Today was Day 3 at Sock Summit 2009. I didn't take any classes, but I did go down as a volunteer today from 7am to 1pm. I worked at the ticket desk selling the marketplace tickets and show books. Great group of ladies led by JoAnn (on ST-2). If there was a lull, everyone was picking up their knitting.

After I was done at 1pm, I made my way into the Marketplace. Lots to see and buy, let me tell you. I'd made a plan by reviewing all the vendors online, going to their websites and deciding to try to spend my money at the smaller booths rather than the larger store booths. Gotta support the independent sellers.

I bought the yarn below:

L to R: Black Watch from RabbitWorks, Andes Mints from StitchJones, South Pacific and Blackbewwie from Lisa Souza, Coffee Haus and Swamp Thing from Rainy Days and Violet from Wool Candy.

Then I also got the accessories below:

L to R: Lovely little triangular bag from Knit Purl Sew What, another project bag from Wendy Sloneker and some pewter sheep stitch markers from KnitWit Momma (at the Mama Llama booth).

I definitely bought more than planned and am trying to convince myself that some of it will be for Christmas gifts. And as Christmas gifts, they don't really count right?

On the flip side of yarn, here's my current to-read pile. A few books were started, but really all of it is just waiting for me to pluck it from the pile and get settled down.

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August 02, 2009

The End is the Beginning

It's been a difficult day here. I spent an hour on the phone with the daughter who doesn't understand why her father felt the need to ask that she not argue with her brother in the car today. She was insulted and proceeded to argue. Youth always thinks arguing will change the minds of their parents, don't they? Suffice it to say, she was un-invited from joining her father to pick up her brother.

We are struggling right now with adult children (if you can call 19 and 21 adults) who wish to live their lives according to their wants, but who also call us to help them with meeting their needs. How do you support adult children without actually giving them support? Rob and I are trying to lives that embody our Christian beliefs. Trying to love those around us, trying to give over the momentary troubles of today to God in order to focus on the race before us, trying to make right choices on a moment by moment basis. Some days are harder than others and so it is today.

Today brought home to me how much their respect for us and our choices feels like lip service given by them. The expectation of respect for their choices also comes with the expectation we will still provide money when they need it. We are a private lending institution with the names of Dad and Gina.

Don't get me wrong, they love their father. They don't forget Father's Day, they call him on his birthday, and try to give some thought to Christmas gifts for him. But they don't understand they pain they cause him, the grief he has over their choices, his difficulty in sharing his thoughts about their choices.

And, we are so tired. Tired of being taken for granted, tired of being argued with, being told our values, way of thinking, personalities and thought processes are "stupid." Tired of being forgotten (that one is me - no regular Mother's day or birthday greetings for this stepmom). Tired of putting our own financial needs to the side. And you know it's time for a change when you realize you are giving more than a passing thought to moving and not leaving a forwarding address.

We are going to be grandparents. Our son is in a struggling relationship and now she's pregnant. He's determined to be in the child's life, but they have a difficult road ahead of them. They are not married, but living together, can barely make ends meet anyway and now a child is on the way.

Our daughter is in college, but living with her boyfriend. We committed to providing tuition, but all other expenses are hers. There is great struggling for her in wanting to truly be on her own doing whatever she wants and still needing us because she's struggling to make ends meet as well.

When they decided to live with their significant other, we cut off support for living expenses. It may seem harsh, to cut off our children only because they chose to live with their significant other. But as Christians, we will not lend support to sin. But, oh, how we've struggled with it. Who wants their child to have to struggle when it's a simple thing to buy groceries, hiking boots, give money because they lost their wallet?

But, we've reached the point of drawing a tough line and living by it with them. We've felt our hearts being tugged by pity and sorrow for their choices and it's costing us emotionally and monetarily and it is taking a toll on us physically.

We will be putting into action the ability to say no. To say to them "No, we can't help you." To say to ourselves "No, they need to be able to do it themselves." and to say to others "No, they have made the choice to be adults."

We don't know what will be before us once we begin, but oh how glad we are to know we will not be walking this difficult path alone.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

It is well, with my soul,
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

July 29, 2009

Feeling (way too) Hot Hot Hot!

The temperature in the house (after having the window A/C on for 30 minutes) and the outdoor temperature. The sensor is on the front of our garage and gets the afternoon sun.

Weather Bug says it's only 104 out, but it's just too darn hot!

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July 15, 2009

Mental Floss Quiz!

I did better than I thought I would!

July 04, 2009

Happy Fourth!

Happy Independence Day! It's one day after Mom's birthday (Hi Mom! Did you get my voicemail?) and only a couple of days from my birthday.

But today, we celebrate the birth of our nation the best way Americans can: with food, fireworks and family.

On the agenda today:

1) Go to the Red Cross and donate platelets.

Done. It didn't look like I'd be able to since my iron reading wasn't high enough. But they tested on the other hand and the reading came out fine! And once I was hooked up, my platelet count was high enough to do a triple donation. Score! And just because I was willing to come in on a holiday, I received the above t-shirt, a coupon for 2-for-1 tickets to a Portland Beavers game and an apple pie!

2) Go eat and blow things up at the BIL's. They live out on Sauvie Island and there will be bbq'ing, lots of food, target shooting (for some), knitting (for me) and lots of family. Four generations stuffing their faces and enjoying the heck out of one another.

3) Keep knitting on Mom's sweater. The second sleeve is almost done on her CeCe and about ready to join all the pieces to finish the yoke.

4) Share yarn-y things.

This is the yarn I bought at the Dancing Ewe the last time I was in Ellensburg. In the clearance for only $3 each! 100 g skeins of Allhemp6 in an awesome shade of green.

And these were knit last month for a baby shower. The happy parents opted to not know the sex of the baby so what to make that could work for a boy or girl? How about Blu jeans? Easy peasy to knit and a definite hit with the parents. This may become my go-to baby gift.

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May 28, 2009

My head is spinning!

So much going on. So much that defies understanding.

The daughter is wrapping up her first year of college. School until Spring Quarter was going well with an A average. But now . . . now . . . it's changing all too quickly.

Once engaged to be married in December, it was broken off in April. Once planning to move in with 3 other girls into a campus apartment, now moving in with a new boyfriend and another couple. Once a strong student, well, still a strong student but one that's going to repeat a class and take an incomplete on another in order to "keep the A average."

Rob and I have always held that we would not provide living expenses should she make the adult decision to live with someone. Adult decisions require adult responsibility. She will now be taking on all expenses for herself with the exception of medical, vision and dental coverage. She knew this, expected it. Except she forgot two other things: Her cell phone? Hers. Her car insurance? Hers.

These last two were shocks to her system. She hadn't planned on paying for those. But, they are part of an adult life and as an adult living with her boyfriend, they are part and parcel as well.

What does this mean for Rob and I? Well, a lot of prayer for our kids who are not following the path we'd hoped they would follow. A resolve to stand for our beliefs as Christians and not underwrite their lifestyles (both will now be living with significant others). A desire to show love to our children while encouraging them to rediscover the faith they've abandoned.

And maybe a few more weekend getaways. For peace of mind, you know.

May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

Mom - who raised 3 daughters and a son

My sister Chris - raising two daughters of her own

My sister Kim - just starting out with her first, a daughter

April 26, 2009

Pictures of the recent fun

Our vacation location: The Plan Sea out of Chula Vista

Plenty of room for 6 adults and 1 baby. As long as most of the time is spent on deck!

Rob's favorite plants appear to be palm trees. He loves taking pictures of them or being photographed with them. This is out along the jetty where there's a park and path. It was a beautiful morning and we passed a couple of groups doing tai chi in the park.

Dad made sure they had a PFD for Giselle on board. Is she conveying an acceptance to wearing it or astonishment over Dad's hair?

Mom also got quality time with Gigi. Here they are, both in their fleece. Although I think Gigi's was footed and Mom's was only a jacket.

Here's the entire Barrera clan: Tony, Kim and Gigi. They got to enjoy nicer weather than what was happening back home in the Mid-West.

Mom & Dad had a kayak moored along side the boat. Rob spent some time tooling about the harbor. I'd hoped to be able to give it a try myself, but the wind was picking up with Rob came back in. Maybe next time.

April 22, 2009

Where has the time gone?

It's been over a month since I last blogged. Facebook has taken over my life. It's so easy to hop on and see what little things people are doing. And I'm totally caught up in Hatchlings (find an egg! watch it hatch! feed the pets!).

But much has happened in the last few weeks.

* I went to Chicago in March and had a lovely time with my newest niece. Since she's only 4 months old (at the time), I also was able to spend time with her parents, my sister and her husband.
* I returned to Vancouver in time to sleep in my own bed and then head out to Ellensburg to visit our daughter. We spent quality time with her in the emergency room where she was checked out for a concussion from a car accident the night before. We went over items for her to do for her upcoming trip to Scotland, paid for Spring quarter and returned to Vancouver on Monday in time for me to . . .
* Teach at bible study that night and again on Tuesday morning
* I vegged out the next two days and then cleaned the house in time for my other sister to arrive with her girls for a quick visit. We had my brother's kids, her girls and our son overnight for a very full house.
* I was happy to return to work for the last two weeks of March.

* We went to San Diego to visit Mom and Dad and had the opportunity to see Kim, Tony and Giselle in SD as well.
* We learned first the delay of our daughter's wedding and then the cancellation of it within a 24 hour period
* Rob just celebrated his 46th birthday

I'm looking at the calendar and we still have an upcoming visit from my brother-in-law, 3 more weeks of bible study, another week off in May for me and an anniversary trip for us to Eagle Crest.

All of these things going on and I need to take my health back in hand. I keep going back and forth about doing WeightWatchers again and trying to get up the energy to workout. I need to, but the "want to" aspect is running quite low.

I have pictures. I need to upload and share.

March 13, 2009

2 weeks off? Yeah, right

So, I had two weeks off from work scheduled. I'd planned to work on my teaching for bible study, catch up on knitting and TiVo, working on items for the Women's Retreat and just enjoying myself.

Instead, I'm in Chicago, without knitting (I know!), watching very few shows I would normally watch (change can be good), wrapping up my teaching notes, trying to remember the time change so I can call people regarding the retreat and trying to stay well.

Sis Kim put out an SOS last week; she had strep and a cold and Gigi was getting out from under a cold bad enough to have them worry about pneumonia. Tony had his hands full with them and work so Mom went first and then I went out and took her place.

Gigi has been a sweetheart. Sure, we battled by the River of Endless Tears one afternoon (hers, not mine!) but we've managed to bump along just fine. She has the sweetest smile that I can't seem to capture on camera. And she's started rolling from her back to her tummy. When she rolls to her right side, her arm gets trapped under her. But for some reason rolling to her left worked better.

She's a drool bomb. Good gravy! She woke up from a nap one day and the entire side of her face was wet - even her hair!

I've got pictures I'll upload later. In the meantime, I'm glad I had the opportunity to come out.

March 06, 2009

The Big Read

Taken from Steph's blog.

The Big Read said that, on average, adults have only read six books on this list.

(It's interesting to see collections as a single work and then specific works within the collection called out. Have I read the complete works of Shakespeare? No. Different plays and sonnets? Yes. From what I understand, the list is a compilation from a poll which is why both collections and singular works are both listed.)

So ... copy this list, mark the ones you've read and see how you compare to the average.

I've made the ones I've read bold and italicized the ones on my to-read list.

1 Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
2 The Lord of the Rings (JRR Tolkien)
3 Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
4 Harry Potter series (JK Rowling)
5. To Kill a Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
6 The Bible (I've read parts, but not all. The begats and the laws drag me down)
7 Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
8 1984 (George Orwell)
9 His Dark Materials (Philip Pullman)
10 Great Expectations (Charles Dickens)
11 Little Women (Louisa M Alcott)
12 Tess of the D'Urbervilles (Thomas Hardy)
13 Catch 22 (Joseph Heller)
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca (Daphne Du Maurier)
16 The Hobbit (JRR Tolkien)
17 Birdsong (Sebastian Faulks)
18 Catcher in the Rye (JD Salinger)
19 The Time Traveller's Wife (Audrey Niffenegger)
20 Middlemarch (George Eliot)
21 Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
22 The Great Gatsby (F Scott Fitzgerald)
23 Bleak House (Charles Dickens)
24 War and Peace (Leo Tolstoy)
25 The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)
26 Brideshead Revisited (Evelyn Waugh)
27 Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
29 Alice in Wonderland (Lewis Carroll)
30 The Wind in the Willows (Kenneth Grahame)
31 Anna Karenina (Leo Tolstoy)
32 David Copperfield (Charles Dickens)
33 The Chronicles of Narnia (CS Lewis)
34 Emma (Jane Austen)
35 Persuasion (Jane Austen)
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe
37 The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
38 Captain Corelli's Mandolin (Louis De Bernieres)
39 Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
40 Winnie the Pooh (AA Milne)
41 Animal Farm (George Orwell)
42 The Da Vinci Code (Dan Brown)
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney (John Irving)
45 The Woman in White (Wilkie Collins)
46 Anne of Green Gables (LM Montgomery)
47 Far From The Madding Crowd (Thomas Hardy)
48 The Handmaid's Tale (Margaret Atwood)
49 Lord of the Flies (William Golding)
50 Atonement (Ian McEwan)
51 Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
52 Dune (Frank Herbert)
53 Cold Comfort Farm (Stella Gibbons)
54 Sense and Sensibility (Jane Austen)
55 A Suitable Boy (Vikram Seth)
56 The Shadow of the Wind (Carlos Ruiz Zafon)
57 A Tale Of Two Cities (Charles Dickens)
58 Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time (Mark Haddon)
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
61 Of Mice and Men (John Steinbeck)
62 Lolita (Vladimir Nabokov)
63 The Secret History (Donna Tartt)
64 The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)
65 Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
66 On The Road (Jack Kerouac)
67 Jude the Obscure (Thomas Hardy)
68 Bridget Jones's Diary (Helen Fielding)
69 Midnight's Children (Salman Rushdie)
70 Moby Dick (Herman Melville)
71 Oliver Twist (Charles Dickens)
72 Dracula (Bram Stoker)
73 The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
74 Notes From A Small Island (Bill Bryson)
75 Ulysses (James Joyce)
76 The Bell Jar (Sylvia Plath)
77 Swallows and Amazons (Arthur Ransome)
78 Germinal (Emile Zola)
79 Vanity Fair (William Makepeace Thackeray)
80 Possession (AS Byatt)
81 A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens)
82 Cloud Atlas (David Mitchell)
83 The Color Purple (Alice Walker)
84 The Remains of the Day (Kazuo Ishiguro)
85 Madame Bovary (Gustave Flaubert)
86 A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
87 Charlotte's Web (EB White)
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle)
90 The Faraway Tree Collection (Enid Blyton)
91 Heart of Darkness (Joseph Conrad)
92 The Little Prince (Antoine De Saint-Exupe)
93 The Wasp Factory (Iain Banks)
94 Watership Down (Richard Adams)
95 A Confederacy of Dunces (John Kennedy Toole)
96 A Town Like Alice (Nevil Shute)
97 The Three Musketeers (Alexandre Dumas)
98 Hamlet (Shakespeare)
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Roald Dahl)
100 Les Miserables (Victor Hugo)

It appears I've read 18 of the 100. Better than average.

February 25, 2009

Catching up

Let's see . . .

1) We've found The Dress. It's been purchased and taken back to E-burg to be altered.

2) I've been entering my books into LibraryThing. I'm just over 400 books and I have more to go. However, I don't think I have over 500. We'll see, I guess.

I've just finished Polly Evans' book It's Not About the Tapas. Great travel book about her cycling around Spain solo. I'm trying to keep the sidebar updated with books read.

3) I've knitted some dishcloths.
Feb dishcloths 2
The usual kitchen cotton. The leftover yarn that's nearly gone. I think I have only bits and bobs of colors and 1.5 balls of white remaining.

4) I finally sat down and wove in the ends for the Little Sister's Dress.
Abby's dress 3

I decided to add 2 different colors for the buttons to make it a little bit more fun.
Abby's buttons

5) In order to meet a March deadline, I finally started knitting slipper's for Chris, Erin's fiance. I'm using Cascade 220: black for the sole and edging and a heathered green for the top.
Chris' slipper

6) I'm trying to get over a cruddy cold likely caught from Rob. Who caught his from Kruz and Khylee. And speaking of Kruz, here's what he's learned to do:
Heavy Metal

This was easier to capture on film than him pretending to be a Jedi and making light saber noises and using the Force to move objects around.

January 31, 2009

Now we start looking for The Dress

Erin is coming down this weekend from school (3 day weekend) and we'll begin the search for the wedding dress.

Early in January, there was a small (very small) wedding convention at the county fairgrounds we dragged the happy couple to.

The Happy Couple

(Chris caught with his eyes closed!)

There were a few dresses being modeled by young women walking around the show. We didn't take too may photos, but did manage get shots of a couple of dresses that caught Erin's eye. Of course, I haven't uploaded them yet.

I did manage to upload this pic of Erin modeling a tiara. It's not the photo with the Minnie Pearl aspect, but it's a great one nonetheless.


End of January?

I'm not ready for the month to be over. I haven't done anything!

I've only read one book: Three Bags Full by Leonie Swann. Fun mystery with sheep trying to figure out who killed their shepherd.

Completed knits for January: two whole washcloths!
January Washcloths

Now this site, CubeeCraft, looks like fun. I may need to print some of these out for my cube at work.

And lastly, a photo from Christmas. The nephew mugging for the camera while his Auntie Chris tries to open the Nerf guns she bought him.

Opening the Nerf guns

January 23, 2009


So, last week I found out I was randomly drawn to win something from Lavender Sheep. Yesterday, I pulled this out of the mail:


Here's a better look:

Gift bag opened

A project bag in a fun pattern, some lovely Lindor truffles and a skein of her Superwash Merino sock yarn in the Wild Violets colorway.


January so far

FO Knitted: one ballband dishcloth from leftover cotton. This pattern and the diagonal garterstitch dishcloth have become my go-to knitting when I lack energy for anything else.

Jan washcloth 1a

UFO Knitted: the Little Sister dress in Knitpicks Dancing (Hula colorway). Being knit for a little girl due in March on size 3 needles in the 6 month size. Don't much care for this picture due to lack of stitch definition. It's really not a big mess the way it looks here.

Little Sister 3

Have also cast on for another ballband dishcloth.

FO Book: Finished Three Bags Full by Leone Swann. Really enjoyed this book and will have to re-read it since I feel like I missed small things along the way. I found myself flipping back pages to pick up on something the sheep were commenting about. Oh, it's a murder mystery with sheep trying to solve who killed their shepherd.

Upcoming post: The lovely gifts received from Lavender Sheep!

January 20, 2009

Inaugural Poem

Obama's speech was great. It was stirring, thoughtful and it invoked pride.

I knew there was going to be a poem as well. And I loved it too.

January 19, 2009

Random Post

1. I've survived another layoff and will continue employment.
2. I need to go to the dentist
3. I haven't gotten very far on the Little Sister dress - I need to bind off the stitches for the sleeves and head into the body of the dress.
4. The den looks amazingly clean
5. I also need to schedule a physical
6. Cupcakes sound good right now
7. I have yet to get up early enough to exercise and I really need to
8. But I *am* trying to eat healthier
9. I'm taking two weeks off in March due to #1
10. The sound of all the wind today reminds me of the ocean

January 13, 2009

Silver Lining

Yee haw!

I've won some fibery goodness! I entered into a little contest over at LavenderSheep's blog for her blogiversary (also go check out her shop - bee-yoo-tee-ful yarns) and I've been randomly selected to get a little something :)

I soooo need it today. There are layoffs currently happening and they aren't expected to be done until Thursday. So far I'm still at my desk, so I guess I'll just have to wait out the next two days.

But I won! Yay me!

January 05, 2009

Another time sucker

I've joined the black hole non-knitters get sucked into: Facebook.

Let's see, what do I need to keep updated?

And that's on top of work, bible study, the women's ministries team, knitting group, watching TV, reading and knitting.

January 01, 2009

2008 Round-Up

2008 is over and 2009 has begun. The NHL Winter Classic is on the tube and I'm wrapping up the year on the 'nets.

Knit in 2008
2 Appliqued Purses as Christmas gifts for two nieces

An Odessa hat, a Coronet Hat and a Laced Edge Hat for co-workers who shaved their head for St. Baldrick's.

I knit Straight-Laced Socks for a niece for Christmas, socks for a baby and Pomatomus for me.

Hats were knit for my mom who also shaved her head for St. Baldrick's this year. She recieved a Lace-Edged Hat, a Lace Leaf Hat and a Wavy Cable Hat.

I knit a Kitty, a 5-Hr Baby Sweater and a Helena baby sweater for babies this year.
My newest niece (the recipient of the Helena sweater) also recieved a Christmas Stocking with gingerbread men on it.

A sweet niece asked for a pink hat this year for her birthday and I obliged her.

Scarves were requested by the daughter for her and her now-fiance. Those were a Cable & Garter scarf and a plain stockinette scarf, both lined with black fleece.

Also knitted were 2 coffee cozies and 20 dishcloths. The dishcloths were my fall-back knitting.

2008 Knitting

Books read in 2008
I didn't read nearly as many books as last year. But I did read enough to average a smidge over 1 book a week. In total, 66 books for a total of 21,215 pages.

In no particular order, they're listed below. And yes, I did read some title more than once. Usually when they were part of a series.

Jennifer Crusie's Anyone But You

Katie Fforde's Restoring Grace, Practically Perfect, Stately Pursuits, Paradise Fields, Life Skills (I thoroughly enjoy Fforde's books; they're comedic, relateable and I enjoy the English aspect)

Jayne Ann Krentz' White Lies, Second Sight, Ghost Hunter, White Lies, Sizzle and Burn (Krent and her alter ego, Amanda Quick, provide some of my favorite reads. She has a series going right now that spans both nom de plumes)

JA Jance's Exit Wounds, Tombstone Courage, Desert Heat (Joanna Brady is a character I enjoy greatly)

Linda Howard's Up Close and Dangerous, Drop Dead Gorgeous (I keep intending to give up Linda Howard but hope is a powerful force)

Mary Jane Maffini's The Cluttered Corpse (A new cozy mystery writer and I enjoy the organizational tips scattered throughout)

Mary Kruger's Knit Fast, Die Young (knitting, mystery. 'Nuff said)

Nora Roberts' High Noon, The Hollow, Blood Brothers, The Hollow, Dead of Night, Waiting for Nick, The Hollow, The Pagan Stone (Nora is a favorite. I read and re-read The Hollow because I loved the characters)

JD Robb's Creation in Death, Strangers in Death (Lt. Eve Dallas is a strong character and I've enjoyed watching her and her "family" evolve")

Donna Andrews's No Nest for the Wicket, The Penguin Who Knew Too Much (cozy murder mysteries, unusual family and Meg keeps it under control)

Yvonne Lehman's Coffee Rings (Christian chick lit, I tried to read more of this type of book this year)

Laura Jensen Walker's Reconstructing Natalie, Miss Invisible, Dreaming in Technicolor, Dreaming in Black & White (this is Christian chick lit I absolutely love)

Sandra Byrd's Let Them Eat Cake (more Christian chick lit and a character I could relate to)

Charles Baxter's The Feast of Love (I haven't seen the movie, but I enjoyed this book. I'm having trouble picturing Greg Kinnear in it)

Mark Haddon's A Spot of Bother (Brit lit. Enjoyed)

Amanda Quick's The River Knows, The Third Circle, Rendezvous, Dangerous, Reckless, Ravished, Deception (see Jayne Ann Krentz above)

Julie Garwood's Shadow Dance (part of a wide reaching series)

Jill Churchill's The Accidental Florist (Meh. I usually enjoy Churchill's books about Jane, but this one wasn't as engaging)

Lt. Carey Cash's A Table in the Presence (wonderful book written by a chaplain who was in Iraq)

Maggie Sefton's Dying to Sell, Killer Stitch (more cozy mysteries)

Tamara Leigh's Perfecting Kate (Christian chick lit and a story line about accepting ourselves as God made us)

Susan Meissner's The Remedy for Regret (Christian chick lit)

Michael Ondaatje's Divisadero (I'd heard about this on the BookLounge podcast, not my usual reading, but that's a good thing)

Sarah Vowell's Partly Cloudy Patriot, Assasination Vacation (love her sense of humor, her ability to pull things together)

Susan May Warren's Everything's Coming Up Josey (little bit of romance and some screwball comedy)

Julie Carobini's Chocolate Beach (and the Christian chick lit continues. This character was closer to my age though)

Jo Dereske's Catalogue of Death (I'd seen this author's books when we were in Seaside and tried it out from the library. I'll continue to read these cozies)

Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next: First Among Sequels (love love love Thursday Next)

Adam Felber's Schrödinger's Ball (I was wandering around the library and came across this book. I love NPR's Wait Wait and he's a frequent guest)

Monica Ferris' Knitting Bones (just keeping up with the series)

Polly Evans' Kiwis Might Fly (a fun travelogue about her adventures riding a motorcycle through New Zealand)

Jan Burke's Kidnapped (this took me forever to read, but it's actually very good. I just kept getting distracted)

Kate Jacobs' The Friday Night Knitting Club (very enjoyable, I cried)

Debbie Macomber's Back on Blossom Street (part of the continuing Blossom Street series)

Kathy Reichs' Monday Mourning (love Tempe, love the science, love the Bones spin-off)

Now to wipe the sidebar clean and start 2009!

Happy New Year!