Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A little chatting time

Joining Patrice at Everyday Ruralty for her weekly chat.   Next week I will actually BE chatting on the porch.  My porch, that is.  Only one more working day left and then VACATION.
But can you tell, in my mind I'm already there!  The last days before vacation is always so looooong.  (sigh)   Today I was almost convinced that someone was having a big sale on stupid pills.  As the day progressed, I became convinced someone was giving them away!!!

But I need to power through.  Keep reminding myself just 7 more working hours.... 

So here are this weeks questions:

  1. Are you looking forward to fall?
Yes, yes, yes....a thousand times yes!!!  I'm ready to be rid of the hot humid weather and trade it in for some cozy sweaters and kick-ass boots!

2.  What are the three best colors for you to wear, and the three worst?
I love black, grey and red.   If I wear white I look like a corpse, and lime green or neon anything is not good either.

3.  What is your favorite kind of juice? If you are not into juice, you can tell us your favorite flavor of soda, tea, coffee, Tang, mud, etc.
Probably apple juice.  Boring but true.

4.  Have you ever been in the hospital (at least an overnight)? You don't need to share the ailment, but tell us what the longest time is.
When I was 5 years old I was in the hospital for a month!!

5.  Do jingles, songs from ads, and TV or movie themes stick in your head? Do you find yourself singing them? (This question means that I'm trying to find out if I'm the only crazy person who sings quirky stuff!)
All the time!  And it always is the song or jingle from something you hate!  Like now, since you forced me to think of something - I now have the Muppets theme song in my head! 

Go and visit Patrice and join in the fun!

Monday, July 29, 2013

The Awakening

On a typical Monday morning you expect to be awakened by the shrill, aggressive buzz of the alarm clock.  But instead I was awakened by the exciting ringing of a cash register.....Cha Ching!

I love the Etsy app on the iPhone.  When you have a sale it alerts you with the sounds of a cash register. And that is the lovely sound that woke me up.  Happy Monday!!  One of the small sheep rugs I hooked in the Spring finally sold.

And that was the motivation I needed to get back to hooking.  Tonight I drew out a new pillow design.  No peeks yet but it's gonna be a HOOT.  (That's a hint in case you didn't catch it) 

I'm trolling the stash looking for the right wools.  Let the hooking begin!!

Saturday, July 27, 2013


Today is a stark contrast to yesterday in regards to comfort levels.  The humidity yesterday was almost unbearable.  No breeze at all coming in the windows last night.  Sleep was not easy!  Ugh We all felt like crap. 

But this morning was perfect.  Nice cool breezes and a few scattered showers that were kind of refreshing.  I had a nice stroll through the Farmers Market and picked up some goodies.  We had corn on the cob, yellow string beans and beets for supper.   And this evening I made a brown sugar meatloaf for tomorrow's supper.  It's in the oven now so I'm ahead of the game for once.  All I will need to do do a few vegetables tomorrow. 

And the cooler weather inspired me to continue knitting the big chunky cowl for fall/winter.

I think another couple of inches and it will be done.  I love this lavender color.  It's a bit more muted than this picture.  It was so hard to pick a color.  Deanne Fitzpatrick has recently added a knitting room to her studio - The Electric Street Knitting Room.   She has it stocked with an amazing assortment of colors and textures.  There is a skein of silk I've had my eye on for the next project maybe....

Friday, July 26, 2013

The Knockout Update

Yesterday I tackled the phone company again.  This time I was armed with both account numbers.  I called again (5th time if you're keeping score).  

I get a different "help" technician.  (Ha). About 15 seconds into the call I can tell she's not the sharpest knife in the drawer, if you know what I mean.  I give her my phone number and I explain my dilemma of the 2 accounts etc.   She says No, your Internet and phone are on one account.  OK, I'm holding 2 statements with 2 separate account numbers but I decide to play along with her. (Just because I'm mean and their customer service skills are ticking me off).  I won't bore you with the entire exchange about how I DON'T have 2 accounts.  Finally, in disgust I say I just want the phone charge off my credit card and only pay for the Internet.  She says "I'm looking at your account and your Internet is free."

Me:   Free........FREE??
Her:   Yes
Me:  (breathe deeply) well, if its FREE why have I been paying xx dollars for the past several years??
Her:  uhmm .....
Me:  I'm looking at my statement right now........
Her:  (snarky) well what is your account number?
Me:  oh, you mean the account you said didn't exist??  (I know, that was mean but seriously???)

Apparently my problem has been resolved.  Or so she she says.  I will wait to do the happy dance until next months credit card statement arrives. 


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

She's gonna blow......

Brace yourselves - I'm about to vent all over you.  It's war with the telephone company!!  This sad saga  started a few days ago.  Auntie got a "statement" from the phone company.  Not a bill, a statement - which said Do Not Pay - balance has been charged to your credit card.  But the problem is she had never given them her credit card.  She always pays her bill by cheque.   So you can imagine the tizzy she was in.  Someone got her credit card, the phone company can do what they want with her bank accounts, blah, blah, blah.....One conspiracy after another!  

She called the phone company.  They couldn't help her.  Didn't know how or who changed it but it was changed.  They told her it was her Bank's problem.  (Insert more tizzy and conspiracy theories).
Yesterday she went to the bank.  They called the phone company for her.  Nope, still no help except all they could tell her was the authorization was given June 24th.   She came home like a crazy woman. 

Frankly if I had heard the story one more time I was going to jam a fork in my ears.  This morning I opened my credit card bill and lo and behold there is a freaking charge from the phone company.  Taaa Dahhh - mystery solved.  On June 24th I called to update my credit card expiry date for the Internet account.  The genius on the other end of the phone obviously just put everything at this address on my credit card. 

Now it was my turn to have a tizzy.  I called the number on the statement to have the pre-authorized payment removed from the phone account.  Ohh, can't do it from that number - I need to call another number (which she doesn't know).  She eventually gives me a number like it is the biggest inconvenience in her day!  I dial the number and I hear this...."you cannot access this number from your area. Please hang up".  Now I'm steaming!

After 3 incredibly frustrating interactions with useless "help" technicians (HA)......I call a 4th number.  I'm seriously about to lose my shit when I am forced to listen to some Muzak version of Muskrat Love while I wait in line for my turn.  The ridiculousness of the music helped settle me so when someone finally answered I immediately said "I'm going to apologize up front for whatever I might say. I'm frustrated!!"  The girl started to giggle and made some funny comment and I couldn't help laugh.  She was great but could call up my phone account, name, address, credit card BUT couldn't find my Internet account without the account number.  And of course I didn't have that!  So I have to go through this all again tomorrow!

Now here is the part that makes me scratch my head.  She had my name, address, phone number etc  and had enough info to charge both accounts to my credit card but couldn't find my account! She could find it to charge me the money but not to take off the charge.

I can type in a random name to Google and find their phone number, address, then pull up a google street view of their house and zoom in to practically look in your windows BUT the phone company can't find my account????  

SERENITY NOW..........(remember that Seinfeld episode?)

I'm de-stressing with a large lovely ball of lavender wool

So, how was your Hump Day?

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Chatting Time

It's time again to join Patrice and Wendell from Everyday Ruralty  for a bit of a mid week chat.

But before we get to the questions, just a little update on the goings-on around here.  First, of course you realize I would never sell sweet Millie in a million years (previous post).  But she has been hyper-needy lately and on Sunday it bordered on hysterical needy!  Last night she was more her normal self so that was good.

And today I am carrying around a new piece of furniture in my car.  (I just hope no one looks in my back seat before I can get home at lunch time.)   Mom's commode (port-a-potty) broke last night so I had to bring it in to the Red Cross depot for replacement.  So basically I have a toilet in my back seat!!  (And people wonder why I'm still single!  HA)

OK, enough toilet talk - Here are this weeks Chat questions.

  1. Do you use any type of water filter (pitcher or sink mount)?
None, I am pleased to say we are blessed with a high quality water source so no need for fancy filters or expensive bottled water.

2.  Do you have any tips for staying hydrated in the warmer weather?
I know the sensible answer (based on the info I provided you with above) would say drink lots of water.  I don't drink as much water as I should.  But there is water in coffee.......

3.   Is your hair naturally curly or straight?
Well, it is a frustrating in-between.  Definitely not straight (not without the flat iron) and definitely not nice beautiful curls.  Its a wavy, frizzy mop and in this humidity it is simply unmanageable!  I will not see another good hair day until Fall when the humidity drops.

4.  Are you on top of all the chores/work you do, or are you always running behind?
Behind.....always behind.  I don't see a future where I am ever caught up.

5.  If you could sing a song to Wendell, what would it be?
I have grown quite fond of Wendell so I wouldn't even consider torturing him with the tone deaf wailing of any tune that comes out of my mouth.  Apparently singing talent skips a generation.  My Mom had a beautiful voice but my Grandma..........well, lets just say it did not sound pretty!

Make sure to visit Everyday Ruralty and join in the chats!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

For Sale

For sale by owner.  One slightly "used" dog.  
Four pounds of insanity.
Will only drink water if someone is holding her and the bowl at the same time.
Refuses to pee if its raining.  You must be prepared to throw her out. 
Dog will pout when her feet get wet.  (Not kidding)

Demonic possession has not been ruled out.
During thunder storms you must be willing to wear her as a scarf because she will NOT peel herself away from your throat.
Begs at the table.

Do not be fooled by this face.  She is basically an evil genius at human manipulation.

Asking price : $10 million (not negotiable).  Email me for delivery arrangements 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Sweet and Bittersweet

It's been a lovely few days.  I took another long weekend and the weather and my plans coordinated perfectly.  Thursday, after dropping Mom at e Alzheimer's Day Care, Auntie and I jumped in the car and headed along the Bay of Fundy coast to Parrsboro.  It's a nice little drive, about an hour to a sweet little town.

First stop is a lunch on the wharf at the little seafood shack, The Harbourview.  They were in a slight crisis as their stove and grill had just died.  But lucky for us we could still get lobster rolls and scallop burgers.  

Next stop was a little bittersweet.  There is a lovely little shop in Parrsboro - Sweet Brier Boutique. 
We have been visiting here for many years.  The owner Joan had become a friend.  She was a lovely and fun loving lady.  Our greeting was always the same - "Here's the Amherst Girls".    She always took Mom and sat with her so Auntie and I could concentrate on shopping. ( smart lady Lol). We always left there laden with bags but also a warm feeling from our visits with Joan.  

Early this spring Joan passed away suddenly and the shop was closed.  However a few weeks ago one of her daughters re-opened the store.   We parked across the street and as we were walking towards the door we both said the same thing - "I feel so sad walking in there".   But in we went.   The shop has been freshened up a little but it still has Joan's stamp all over it.  Lots of fun and quirky finds in every corner. 
I loved this peacock.

We browsed around and talked to the "new Joan".   We expressed our condolences and memories of her Mom.  By the time we left all of us had teary eyes.  But I do know how proud Joan would be to see the.store thriving again and her vision continued.  

We had a good day. 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Happy Wednesday

Does anyone else find this commercial as funny as I do?  I love this camel!!!   Happy Hump Day.  Woo Woo

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Chatting 102

It feels like a good day to visit Patrice and Wendell at Everyday Ruralty for their weekly chat.

The weather here is still hot and stuffy.  Its that dang humidity that gets you.  To call my hair "unmanageable" this week would be an understatement!  Poofy would be a good word to describe it :)   But I imagine there is a lovely cool breeze on the farmhouse porch.

This is the 102nd chat.  Great job to Patrice for keeping it going faithfully for this long.

Here are this weeks questions:

  1. Have you cooked any interesting dishes lately?
Nope, afraid not.  When the weather gets this hot my creativity in the kitchen disappears.  Lately its been quick and dirty meals.
2.  What question would you like to ask Wendell?
Wendell, what is your favorite band or song?  (I'm guessing it might be Big & Rich - Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy)  wink
3.   Have you had any thoughts of Christmas yet?
Noooooooo.    (But it would be smart if I did a few hooked Christmas craft pieces so I could sell them ahead of time. But since when am I smart?)
4.   Do you make jams and jellies?
Again, No.  But I have lots of friends who do so I am never without jars of yummy stuff :)
5.   Do you have any board games that you enjoy?
I always loved board games.  Especially those Monopoly games at the cottage that went on for days and days.   Maybe because of my desire to rule the world and own everything ;)
Thanks again to Patrice for hosting this weekly get-together.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Catch me if you can

Not sure what happened this morning but Millie went a little crazy.  Perhaps it was a small protest because I posted yesterday about dogs and she felt left out.  But what I do know for sure is she was making some kind of statement!

This morning we had our usual routine and after her trip outside to do "her business" I put her on her blanket on the sofa.  Usually she just settles down for a nap.  Today she barked, twirled, danced, growled the entire time I was having my coffee and newspaper.  (Annoying). 

Finally just before I left for work I went in to see what the heck she was doing.  I witnessed more antics so I put her down on the floor.  She ran to the middle of the living room, sat down and stared at me.  Like serious stink-eye staring.  So I went to scoop her up and just as I bent down she bolted.  Now she's in the den, waiting with the same stink-eye.  Again I go to get her and zoooom.....she's in the hallway.  It took me several minutes to finally corner her.  It was funny, yet a little to early to avoid annoyance.

I plunked her back on her blanket and left for work.  About an hour later Auntie calls me.  "The dog is acting crazy" she says.  And she tells me how she's been chasing Millie around the house.  Half way through her story I'm laughing.  I told her she did the same with me.

It was odd.  And it was almost like she was laughing at me every time I bent down to grab her and she ran.  She was definitely enjoying it. 

When I came home at lunch, the attitude continued 

Me: "Millie, look at me"
Millie: "No"
Me: "Please, look at Mommy.  I want to take your picture"
Millie:  "Not happening" 

That is an awful lot of attitude for 4 pounds of fluff.  Can dogs have a mid-life crisis?

Sunday, July 14, 2013

You can't teach an old dog.......

No, this is not a post about Millie the Wonder Dog - it's me.  Today I felt like the old dog.  I've always been fairly tech savy.  So this morning when I decided to dig out my ipod and create a new playlist and sync it - it should have been a quick and easy task.  Hmmm, or so I thought! 

First it hadn't been synced in ages so when I plugged it in there were umpteen updates to load. In the meantime I put together my new, fun summer playlist.  All was good until I tried to sync.  All those infernal updates changed the interface.....I couldn't figure out how to sync the new playlist onto the iPod.  I'm ashamed to admit the entire process took about 2 hours.   Frustrated!!  I had better not get sick of this playlist for a long time. 

Plus it's been hot, hot, hot for days.  I hate to complain but without air conditioning this house is a sauna.
Patience has been at a premium around here and poor Momma had a few health issues late this week that complicated things and tested my nerves.   She seems better today but we are all a little off from the heat.  

It's even too hot to hook.  The thought of having that frame on my lap is just too much so I have been knitting instead.   Dish cloths anyone??  

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Getting "bent" out of shape

Not all things are alike when it comes to tools and rug hooking tools are no different.  Everyone has a preference to the materials they use or the type of hook.  I have purchased and tried multiple different hooks.  I did not like the long pencil hooks at all and even tried the hooks with a thin shaft and very fine hook.  Yuk!  Just seemed to not grab the entire strip and shred it.

So I always return to my trusty beginner hook.   It's not very fancy or glamorous but we get along just fine.   But there is always the lure of trying something new.

I know several rug hookers rave about the bent hook.  If you have any wrist strain etc, especially if you are a primitive hooker using wide cuts you know what I mean.   The bent hook is supposed to help with this and eliminate some of the wrist movement.  I have purchased a couple of local made ones over the years but they have all had the fine shaft and point which I don't like.   But still the Hartman Bent Hook was on my someday list.  

Well someday is here.  I finally purchased a medium Hartman.

I haven't really given it a good test drive yet but did hook a bit with it to finish this piece.  It does take a little getting used to as you hold it differently in your hand.  It is comfortable and is great for straight lines but I do need to practice a bit more on the curves and circles.  It does slow me down a little until I get accustomed to it.

Speaking of this piece......I have finished the hooking (but not the binding yet).  An online customer requested a sheep pillow.  However when I sent her the photo she decided it wasn't for her.

So if anyone is interested in this Whimsical Sheep Pillow, send me an email.  I will have it bound and stuffed by the end of the week and if no one is interested I will post it in my Etsy shop.

Happy Thursday Friends!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Weekend Wrap-Up

Well, better late than never!  I am happy to say that this weekend was much better than last weekend.  It was sunny and hot, hot, hot.  And I am also happy to say that my eye is back to looking normal.  I will probably avoid the contact lenses for a few more days, just to be sure the infection is totally gone. 

Here are some pics of how I dealt with the heat over the past few days.   Well, first it is important to stay hydrated in the warm weather.....
It wasn't long after I posted this pic to facebook, a friend messaged me to stop by her place for a swim if I was free.   Ahhh, it was hotter than you-know-what on my back deck so I didn't waste any time flying upstairs to change into a "respectable" bathing suit and enjoy a few hours of this
 And again on Sunday where we felt it necessary to dress up the volleyball like "Wilson" from the movie Cast Away.   The things we will do to entertain ourselves in the heat

It was a great weekend but after lounging in the sun all weekend and looking at my feet at the end of a lounge chair, I decided I needed to treat them to something pretty.

Now it feels like summer!  Bring it on

(P.S.  I started this post yesterday and just finished this morning.  Gee you would think it was a novel)   I have some hooking stuff to show you next post.  

Friday, July 5, 2013

Ode to Bloomers

Bloomers.  Great Grandma's undies.  I remember being a little girl and laughing at my Grandma's underwear.  They were not this kind of bloomers but they were humongous.  We teased her and called them Bloomers, Drawers, Betty Lou's and she sometimes called them Buckmores.  Not sure if that was a brand at the time or not.  All I know for sure is if she had still been alive when the thong gained popularity, she would have died!

This summer I've fallen in love with the T-shirt dress.  So easy and comfortable. And it's just one thing - no trying to match tops to pants etc.   One thing......so simple.  For dressy add a scarf and some chunky jewelry and you are good to go.  Take off the embellishments and its super casual.  

But there is a snag.  If you are like me and have a little middle age spread or muffin top, you are faced with an undergarment dilemma.   I tried on these dresses with all my undies and it just wasn't working. It was like looking at rolling sand dunes under that jersey cotton!!

So, what's a girl to do?  Well you ask your girlfriends of course.  I was talking to a friend one day who regularly wears these types of dresses so I said something like "So, what kind of drawers have you got under that dress?"  Lol. Women of a certain age get comfortable with these types of questions.   She says "well you need to get a full size brief."   Like Granny Panties?  Yup!  

Remember that scene in Bridget Jones Diary when Hugh Grant gets a peek under her dress and says "those are some enormous panties".  Well, that's what I needed - a few pairs of enormous drawers!

I shudder to admit this......but these granny panties (with a little tummy sucking spandex) are pretty freaking comfortable.  There, I said it.  I'm an (occasional) granny panty girl ;).   

(But don't spread it around, OK?)

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

In the Pink

I thought I better start this post with a cute fluffy pink picture, just in case I scare anybody with what is coming up next.
Yesterday morning I woke up to a bit of a surprise.  In fact, it looked
like I was getting ready to audition for a Vampire or Zombie
Apocalypse movie.
Brace yourselves........

PINK EYE...... (please excuse the unkempt brow)
Seriously???  So for the first time since I was 16 years old, I am not wearing contact lenses today. 
I'm officially a 4-eyes until this clears up.   Good Grief!!
And just to add insult to injury this morning, as I was stuffing something into the old wicker hamper I caught my finger and sliced it wide open.  Pulled out my hand and was dripping blood.
I wanna go back to bed :(

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

100 Chats

Today is a milestone for Patrice and Wendell at Everyday Ruralty blog.  Together they have been hosting this weekly blog gathering for 100 posts!

That is a lot of questions but even better, that is a lot of fun and fellowship between bloggers.   I admit I haven't participated in all of the Chats but have enjoyed it when I'm able and have met lots of lovely new bloggers this way.

So in honor of Wendell, lets raise a glass of carrot juice and get straight to this weeks questions.

  1. What's the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Gee, this is a hard one because my grandparents had literally hundreds of old sayings and expressions that continue to resonate with me on a regular basis.  Perhaps my favorite is "I complained because I had no shoes until I saw a man with no feet".   As I grew up this took on more meaning for me and it is why I always try to remember (when I start to get whiney) that things could always be worse.     
2.  Do you have houseplants?
Yes we do but only because my Aunt looks after them.  I am not good with plants.  Every single one I have tried to keep in my office has died.  Definitely not a green-thumb kind of girl :) 
3.  Do mosquitoes bother you or leave you alone?
I'm afraid I am a magnet for mosquitoes.  They love me
4.  What's your favorite charity? If you have one.
I have experienced first hand the amazing work done by the Victorian Order of Nurses.  We would not be able to care for Mom at home without their help.  The in-home support and programming they provide is wonderful.
5.  Do you like mint? Which variety is your favorite?
The kind of mint that does in here.........Mmmm, Mojito's