Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I was so busy on Sunday, I didn't get a chance to post!  Between all my other chores, I decided to see how far I could go on my newest quilt top.  I picked up the material the 2nd weekend of July, and hadn't touched it yet.  The next meeting is in two weeks - but it took a lot less time to put it together than I thought it would.  Of course, I was watching the Olympics at the same time, and worked until 10:00 Sunday night - but it's done!

Here are the first set of color blocks I did - there are three sets - brown, green and gold.  

And here they all are - put together!  I love the colors for this one, and my points almost match up this time - each quilt they are a little bit better!

Picot was lounging around last night - that just doesn't look comfortable to me!

The dogs and I took a quick walk Sunday - I almost waited too late to go.  We went at 10:00, I think, and it was already hot.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Sunset the other night - beautiful!

What a week - it went by so quickly, I hardly noticed.  We had company in last night for a BBQ - we tried BBQing salmon for company for the first time.  We have some timing issues to work through, but we all got fed, and dinner was fun and delicious.  Meredith, Chris and I floated a bit in the pool after dinner chatting (not so much for Chris - he was happy with a quick dip and he was out.)  We sat out on the patio for a bit after our dip, talking as well.  I had cleaned the kitchen up pretty well beforehand, luckily.  While we were out chatting, Alli helped herself to the rest of the chips.  We had a happy Alli, and very happy dogs that got to clean up after her.  (Maybe not so much a happy Mom, but is wasn't THAT many chips, and it was my own fault!)  I was just glad it was the chips and not the mini-creme puffs that were sitting there waiting for us for dessert!  That would have been a big bummer - they were tasty!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

She did it!  Allison is free from the brace - at least most of the time!  She needs to wear it when she is going to be active, but if she is just sitting around watching TV, she doesn't need to wear it.  Since most of her time is spent watching TV, she is good to go!  She just needs to wear it when she is doing a lot of walking - i.e. grocery shopping, but the rest of the time, she is free!!!  We go back in a month for another set of x-rays, and see what happens next.

She also went to therapy yesterday with Ralph (I took her in for x-rays and to see Dr. Lam - he did therapy) and was a perfect angel.  She had no problems at all doing what the therapist wanted and did the things we tried to get her to do and she wouldn't do with me.  Go figure!  She stepped up on all sorts of things, rolled on the ball on her stomach, etc.  Maybe Ralph should take her all the time!

I took some pictures at Mom's with my cell phone - not the greatest camera, but at least I took pictures.  I have a couple of shots of Dawn and Michelle, but they weren't the most flattering photos - I definitely need to work on my people photo skills!  Here's Dave:

 The moon (very small above the trees)
 And Lily

Monday, July 23, 2012

Vacation is over - back to work today - but not before another round of running all over town. Alli has an appointment today with Dr. Lam, which means she need x-rays this morning, and then off to Dr. Lam's.  She also has a therapy appointment at 10:30, but Ralph is taking her to that, since is is my first day back to work.  We got the EOB for her 'evaluation', and insurance isn't covering any of it - it all goes to her deductible.  Bummer!  We did get a notice from Far Northern that insurance has to cover the actual therapy, effective 7/1, but we did her evaluation in May, so it isn't covered.  One more (large - $396.00!) bill to pay.  Oh well, it's only money LOL!

Dawn, Alli and I made a quick trip to Susanville.  The original plan called for us to hand out at Antelope Lake with the family on Friday, but by the time we got there (we left a bit late) they were packing up to go home, so....we went back to the house too.  Alli enjoyed herself - this was her favorite position at Grandmas!

One of the reasons Mom was headed back to the house on Friday was that there was a pancake breakfast planned on Saturday morning by Eastern Star in Susanville.  She needed to be there at 6:00 a.m., and didn't want to go straight from camping.  The event went well - it could have used a bit more direction, but it worked.

Dawn and I also spent most of Saturday with a girlfriend - it was good to catch up, but also a time to reaffirm that I made some right choices along the way.  Michelle hasn't always, and she isn't a happy person right now.

Friday, July 20, 2012

I found the cutest frog when I was cleaning up the yard for company Wednesday.  I very carefully cleaned up around him, and he stuck around for quite a while, letting me take pictures, and move around him.

Here's a close up of him:

Allison had her first therapy session yesterday - she had a blast.  I'm not so sure about the therapist.  Alli is so different than most kids, it's hard to adjust (quickly) to her style of learning.  The very first thing the therapist started with was have her stretch an exercise band.  She showed Alli what she wanted to do, and then handed it to her to do it.  Alli didn't even take the band.  It wasn't anything interesting to her.  The therapist then 'helped' her stretch it - with my help, we put it in Alli's hands, and the therapist stretched it out.  Alli's hands just road along for the ride - she wasn't stretching it.  So much for that idea.

We moved on to other things, and with each new adventure, the therapist came a little closer is figuring out how Alli worked.  The biggest clue was when she wanted her to step up on a step, and lift one leg up after stepping up.  Really?  This I gotta see!  The first time 'we' tried to get Alli to step on the step, she actually rolled over the top of us to the floor rather than put any weight on the foot on the step.  That, I've never seen her do.  We did eventually get her to step up on the step and step back down,  Once she had done it a couple of times, it was no big deal.  The hard part is getting her to figure out what we want her to do.  I think that was the clincher for the therapist - she can't 'model' behavior - she can't see someone do something and then do it herself.  She has to be physically moved through the behavior - tough to do sometimes!  All in all, it was a successful hour, and Alli took a nice long nap in the afternoon.

Dawn and I took a walk in the evening yesterday - I had Alli with me in the morning, and couldn't go for a walk while it was cool.  When AJ got up and could have watched her for me, it was already too hot to go for a walk.  The sunset last night was beautiful!

And.....the blackberries are ripe!  I ate quite a few on the walk - I need to bring a bag to put some in, but I keep forgetting!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

The weather was perfect for sitting on the patio last night, chatting and discussing 19 Minutes.  There was a hint of a breeze, the temps were in the high 70's - perfect - but no one decided to swim.  This is the second time we have planned a 'pool party' meeting, only to have the weather be a bit too cool to get in the pool.  Maybe next time - the September meeting will be here too, and it will still be warm - maybe even warm enough to swim!

Alli has her first therapy session at the Therapy Station today.  We took her in a couple of months ago for an evaluation for her choking.  I hope we can find some things that work - she has been better lately.  Some of the tricks I have tried seem to help, but she still chokes frequently.  She gets to go see Dr. Lam next week for her back, too - we may get her all fixed up yet!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I made a dent in the guesthouse!  (Cleaning it that is -  not a real dent!)  I had plans to straighten it up this week while I was off anyway, but now I REALLY have to clean it up - Dawn couldn't even walk into the living room.  I got the books sorted out and on the new book shelf - and hauled 5 bags of books to Salvation Army, along with a bag of old kids video movies (ones that my kids didn't watch anyway) and some clothes that I had pulled out a while back to go.  I got part of the garage cleaned out too!  The only bummer - the Salvation Army that is less than a mile from me isn't taking donations - I had to drive to the west side of town to drop them off.  Today I hope to get the kitchen area straightened up.  After that, she may be on her own to do it!  I need to clean up more in the garage so we can pull out some stuff (camping gear, etc.) so she has a place to put her stuff!

I planted (replanted, actually - they really do need water!) flowers around the patio, and cooked a roast for dinner,  It was cool enough here I could use the stove.  All that, and I even sat down for a few minutes and worked on a doily.  A good day!  Dawn and I took the dogs for a walk - here's a picture of Tank - a handsome fellow! 

Tonight is the book club meeting at my house, so I hope to get the house cleaned up this morning, along with the patio area.  I also found that I didn't finish a project for tonight.  I meant to make the flip-flop wine glass coasters for tonight.  I have the bottoms all done - I just didn't put the straps on them (and weave in the ends - that takes longer than making the straps!)  I have that on my to-do list as well.  Better get moving - I'm behind already.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

I'm baaack!  I made a flying trip up to Puyallup, WA, Sunday, and home again Monday.  We loaded up the RAV with everything we could of Dawn's, and moved her lock, stock and barrel down to Redding, including Tank, the Norwegian Elk-hound.  The trip up was beautiful - I took off around 6:00 a.m., and the sun was coming up on Shasta Lake when I got there - beautiful!  The drive through Oregon was nice - a bit of rain, a lot of clouds - very refreshing after coming out of our 109 heat last week.  I think it would be depressing to stay there for long, but it made a nice change for a day or two.  Puyallop was pretty - much bigger than I thought it was.  Dawn and I went out to dinner at her favorite place, and the food was wonderful!  We went to bed early and were up before 5:00, and on the road by 6:30.  Not bad!  I was beginning to wonder if I was gong to get everything in the RAV.  It didn't look too bad at first, but every time I went back to the house, there was another couple of boxes or bags at the top of the stairs!  We managed to fit everything in, and still leave a spot for Tank.  I kept telling him that if he wasn't so fat, we would have more room!  (Tank is going on a serious diet, really!)

Ralph got a new toy yesterday, too - a tray to hold his helicopter controls. He's been practicing at work everyday at lunch with a co-worker, and is feeling pretty confident!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Here are pictures of the afghan so far - an alligator on the left and a tiger on the right. 

 Here's a look at the back so far - way too many ends to weave in!!!

Alli's daycare made her a book - it is so sweet!

Vacation time!  Yippee!  Of course, no one told Allison it was vacation time, so we were up at our normal time.  She actually did sleep in a bit, but I stayed up way too late last night reading, so it felt really early this morning when I heard her get up.  That's all right - I've been bumming around this morning - I need to get going.  I have my quilt meeting this morning (really - it really is THIS weekend!) and then my normal shopping, and then a fun shopping trip - we are going to a friend's 50th birthday party tonight, and I need to put a present together.  I'm getting a gift card for her, but I would like to have a little better presentation than just in a card for her.  I also need to clean up a bit around here.  We'll see how I do!

I'm also going to be making an unplanned road trip.  I think (the plans are still under construction) I'm headed to Washington tomorrow to move a friend down to Redding.  I already told her that part of my vacation plans was to clean up the guesthouse, so she will have to take it as it is for now,  She can help me clean it up!  It isn't particularly dirty (no more than usual!) but it is very messy - I still have piles out there from my floor project and the bookcase project.  That's what I get for putting it off (or rather, that's what SHE gets for me putting it off!)  You'd think I would know better.

I want to post pictures of the afghan I have started.  It is coming along very well - slowly, but it is so cute!  I was worried that it would be boring because it is all single crochet, but the color changes make it anything but boring.  Frustrating, perhaps, but not boring!  I'll try to get a good picture of it today.

I may be paying for my floors for years to come (that's what you get when you go over budget!) but they are soooo worth it!  Last night, Allison had a diaper issue, and instead of scrubbing the carpet by hand, and dragging out the carpet cleaner, etc., at 10:00 at night, I just had to wipe up the floor - love it!  Now, if I could only get her to go to the bathroom for a diaper change.  She was doing pretty well on that for a while, but she started backsliding.  Oh well, at least it is easier to clean up now.

Sunday, July 08, 2012

The day off in the middle of the week sure messed up my poor little brain.  By having two "Mondays" in the week, my internal calendar was all wrong.  I texted Meredith Friday night to see if she was in town, and was going to the quilting meeting on Saturday.  Since she had been in and out of town most of the last month, her calendar was messed up too.  Yesterday was the FIRST Saturday (it sure felt like the second, really!)  Quilting is on the SECOND Saturday of the month.  When I got to the quilt shop, and there was only one car there, I checked my calendar......oops!  I tried calling Meredith, but she was already on her way.  One other confused soul showed up for our non-meeting, so we had a nice chat and a show and tell in the parking lot, so all wasn't lost.  I have the backing pinned to my quilt, so maybe I will have some of the quilting actually done at the real meeting.  After our non-meeting, I went on my merry little way with my normal chores.  After they were done, Alli and I took some time off in the pool.

She likes to hang on me in the pool and have me bounce her or pull her around, or push her through the water.  Yesterday, she got me when I was down in the deep and and was doing her best to push me under the water.  Ralph tossed me an extra floaty, and I was able to keep my head above water at least.

I tried to get her to use the floaty, but met with minimal success.  She is much more interested is using Mom as a floaty!

She did have fun though, regardless.

I finally figured out what I am doing for bookmarks for the book club.  The book we read this time (19 Minutes) didn't lend itself to any specific bookmark.  It was a good book, but a bit depressing. So - we get watermelons for summer!  The one on the left is the first one I made.  I wasn't happy with the 'seeds' so I experimented a bit more, and came up with the other two - much better!  The beads look much more like seeds now.

Also, I got my afghan kit I ordered yesterday - it is the Jungle Buddies afghan that I want to make for a co-worker.    Here is a picture from the website - marymaxim.com.
Jungle Buddies Blanket ()

It is all single crochet, with lots of color changes.  I got it started yesterday, but I didn't get very far.  It is a really cute pattern - I can hardly wait to get it going.

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Happy 4th of July!  I'm enjoying a day off from work, and will be enjoying a wonderful BBQ at Larry and Pat's later today.  Other than that, I have no plans for the day!  I thought about working on my quilt, and that may happen yet, but so far today.....I'm relaxing!  I need to go whip up some salads to take to the BBQ, but that is all that I HAVE to do today.

Monday morning, Alli's bus didn't come.  I was almost expecting it.  On Friday, her bus driver told me it was her last day driving for the summer.  Since a lot of the 'summer staff' just work half the session (Alli's aides are doing that too) I didn't really think too much about it, but....in the back of my mind something started asking "Was she really splitting the session with another driver?"  The answer was "no".  The bus is usually here by 6:50.  At 7:00, I call Transportation.  When I said that Alli's morning bus hadn't come, and asked what the status was, I was told that they didn't have Allison scheduled for a bus.  Odd, she's had one everyday for the last two weeks.  "No, ma'am, she isn't on our schedule.  We haven't been busing her."  Even odder.  "Did you tell Katie that?  She's been here every day at 6:50 to pick her up and take her to Anderson High School".  "Ma'am, the only student we have at Anderson is an Allison, and she is on Debbie's bus, and Debbie doesn't leave the bus barn until after 7:30, so I know she hasn't been picked up at 6:50."  "Guess what - that is MY Allison that goes to Anderson, and she rides Debbie's bus in the afternoon, but she rides Katie's bus in the morning to Anderson, since school starts at 7:30."  Long pause....."Let me call you right back."  Sure.  Whatever.  I can tell it isn't going to be a good Monday!

I did get a call back, and they did mess up and we will have a bus for her - can I wait until around 8:00 for Debbie to pick her up?  That would be a 'no'.  How about I just take her to school today, and  you can work on a pick up for tomorrow?  I was already stressed, since I wanted (needed?) to be at work early.  Taking Alli to school would put me in to work right on time, which would be late!  Ralph volunteered to take Alli for me (Thank you!) and I got to work later than I had planned, but early than  I expected.  I should have come in at 6:00 (and worked up 9:00 p.m.?)!  It was not the best Monday by a long shot.  I did get a call from Transportation, and they did get a bus arranged for Allison for the rest of summer school, and they would be here at the same time, 7:10.  Really?  The 'same time' was 6:50, but....I'm not arguing, I'll take it!  

On Tuesday, when the bus came, the driver was said that he had been expecting a call.  He had been told on Friday that it was his last day.  Since he knew that most of his "kids" still had school, he was a bit puzzled, but...what could he do?  You get told not to show up, you don't show up.  Katie's bus had mainly young children, and his had mainly teenagers.  I think the elementary schools were done with summer school, and Transportation thought they were done, too!  The new driver is nice - he has been a temp driver before, so he's met Allison, which helps set my mind at ease.   The 7:10 pickup isn't the best for me, especially this week (the first of the month,and I have staff out on vacation) but is till work.  I stayed until 6:40 last night to try to catch up, and went directly to the scout meeting.  I thought seriously about going in today, but....not going to do it!  I'll take today off, and see how the rest of the week goes.

Monday, July 02, 2012

One thing about having pets - you are never alone!  Even folding laundry, someone will hang out with you.  Unfortunately, they will also sit on your clean laundry if you don't watch them.  In this case, Rufus hardly ever plays in the basket (I think he thinks he is 'above all that') but yesterday he just moved in.


He is such a sweet thing - he really is too refined for all that stuff!

I got a lot accomplished yesterday.  I got up early and started laundry so that it was all drying by 10:00, and I went out while it was still cool and started cleaning up my new rock area around the pool.  The boys dug out all the grass sometime around Memorial Weekend, but didn't do anything since.  The grass, of course, had started growing back.  I went out with my hoe and attacked it!  I quit there around 10:00 too, because the heat was starting to creep in.  I also got the guest house arranged a bit so that the new bookcase could get moved in.  Yippee!  Progress!!  AJ came home from the neighbors, and we put the weedblock down on my freshly hoed dirt, and hopefully today they will get the timbers down.  Bringing the rock in will take a while, but at least the weeds won't grow back in the mean time.  AJ and I took a nice cool swim after working in the heat - so nice!!!

Sunday, July 01, 2012

Happy July!  The first half of 2012 is done - I can't believe it.  When I was moving things out to put the floor down, I found all my UFO's (unfinished objects) that I said I wanted to finish this year as my New Year's Resolution.  Guess what - it hasn't happened!  Not only that, but in just the last week, I've bought two more skeins of yarn and bought a baby afghan kit.  Not to mention the downloading of several new patterns.     

I heard from a friend that Tuesday Morning - a store I had never been to - had yarn on sale.  That caught my attention!  I stopped by lunch, and picked up a couple of skeins.  The selection wasn't great (I was at the tail end of the sale!) and the types of yarn are ones I've never heard of, but....I thought I'd give it a try.  I spent most of that evening trying to unravel the skein so I could use it.  I got my ball winder out (which was hidden in all the stuff I had unloaded to put the floors in - it took forever to find what box I put it in!) and the yarn knotted up immediately.  Hmmm - I should have started with the yarn swift, you think???  I dug it out (which was easier to find at least!) and then tried to figure it out.  I've never actually used it before, but it went together pretty easily and worked like a charm (which was great because I had no instructions for it!)  I got the yarn all untangled and wound up in a ball, and started working on a swatch, jut to see how it would work out.  Not too bad!  It has a nice feel to it too.

Yes, the leg in the upper right of the photo belongs to a cat - he just had to 'help'!
Since I had to look so long through boxes the other night, I decided yesterday that I needed to finish unpacking what I was going to bring in to the house.  I had all my 'craft stuff' on the table as AJ wandered through.  "How come you have a naked barbie?" he asked.  Good question - why was she naked? - because I bought her specifically to try on clothes that I made for Rachelle's dolls (which explains why she isn't the prettiest barbie, and why she has purple legs - I think she must have been on sale!) , so once I made her clothes, I gave them away.  I think I even gave Rachelle the original outfit she was wearing when I bought her.  So....yesterday afternoon while watching the Giant's game, I made her a little dress.  It worked up so quickly, I'm thinking about making another one for Rachelle's dolls!
Should I have been working on a UFO?  Of course! but I didn't.  I should have been doing lot of things, but...I didn't.