Saturday, July 30, 2011

Travels with Lavs

All of a sudden, I've got trips to take!  If you know me at all, you know I tend to stick to home (in a Paula Deen agoraphobic kinda way lol), so this is highly unusual.

Over the next month, I'm heading to Seattle twice (next week for a few days to help Susna get ready for a big ole moving sale -- really, you're moving?), then towards the middle of August for a week to stay with our Mom and try to find fun things to do with her.  Suggestions welcome.  Just remember she can't really follow movie plots any more so that's out, she gets cold easily, and she can't sit in the car for long periods of time.  Other than that, she's easy to entertain :-)

Then, as soon as I get back from Seattle, I'm off to Virginia for a week!  Can't wait to see my long-lost children way over on the East Coast.  Cara has let me know the weather is still AWFUL there, with the heat and the humidity.  I'm praying that the cicadapocolypse is over by the time I arrive.  The VA-ers aren't big museum goers, but I'm going to spend at least one day at the Smithsonian, and I hope to get to Mount Vernon this trip.  Colonial Williamsburg may be asking too much, but the Civil War Life Soldier's Museum is just down the road at the local strip mall, so yay!  Then we can scoot over to Bob Evans for some deep-fried everything.  And I may make a return visit to the James Monroe Museum in Fredericksburg, aka The World's Saddest and Loneliest Museum, just because the docents were SO happy to see us the last time we were there.  So what if there's not really much IN the museum (evidently J-Mon. left a lot of his furniture and whatnot in the White House, not realizing he was going to have to furnish a museum in 200 years).

So, lots of fun travel adventures await!  And of course I'll be documenting it all for you.  Now to figure out the hardest stuff: what knitting projects should I take?

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Finished and Filled

I finished my circular needles holder last night:

And filled it right up with the needles I plan to keep (if anyone wants bamboo or wood needles, let me know cuz I have a few sets that I don't want any more).  LOVE THIS.  I feel very organized!  Though I'm befuddled as to why I own 5 pairs of size zero circular needles.  At least 4 more than I need.

Spooooky...Not Very

Katie and I watched this movie:
When I watched it (way back in 1973-ish) I had to sleep with the lights on for a WEEK.  So I was kind of looking forward to getting scared again.  Didn't happen.  I guess special effects have come a long way since this film was made.  Pea soup vomit just doesn't have the same thrill as it used to.  Didn't need the lights on at ALL.  And Katie wasn't even scared to sleep in her room in the basement.  Boo.

That reminds me of another movie that scared the bejezus out of me when I was a kid:

We watched this at a sleepover at the Herseths' house (Zaids, were you there?  Were you terrified?)  Seriously, this one creeped me out for years.  And then I made the mistake of watching it again.  LOL, NOT SCARY.   At least the acting was pretty good, but nothing kept me awake nights.

THIS movie, on the other hand, still packs a punch or two:

BTW, Pia was FURIOUS at us for watching a scary movie.  Joke's on you, Rotcher, it wasn't really scary at all :-)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Another Project on the Needles

Just so y'all don't think that all I do is watch TV...or that at least I do something crafty WHILE I'm watching's a cute project I'm working on.

It's a circular knitting needles holder, which is going to look much nicer than my current needles holder, AKA big ugly cardboard box.  You slide the needles through the "slots" and they kind of dangle off either side.  I have a set of charms with the numbers 1-13, so I can label each slot.  And be organized! Yay!

My Favorite Guy...

has to be Ron Swanson of "Parks and Recreation".  Unfortch for me, Ron is married to Karen from "Will and Grace" in real life.  However, we can all enjoy the greatness that is Ron S. in this homage to everything he has said about meat:

Sunday, July 24, 2011

But This is Happy

We are watching "Roseanne's Nuts", which is GREAT.  I love Roseanne, esp. when she tipped over on her motorcycle.  It's me, if I had a lot of money and anger management issues!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

This is Sad

What a sad end for a talented musician.  Only 27 years old.  Really sad that she couldn't get her life together.

Chicken Man

Liam drew me two chicken pictures:

I heart these.  A chicken on wheels with flowers!  An evil chicken!  And he draws WAY better than I do.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Two Thumbs Up

Katie and I went to "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2" tonight (2nd time for her, 1st for me).  It was great!

The best thing about going to a Harry Potter movie with me?  I NEVER remember the plotlines of the books, so each movie is a brand new story!  I forget all the details as soon as I finished reading one of the books.  It's magic :-)

I did think this movie was very good.  As well as the whole series.  And THIS never fails to melt my heart:
Every time I see tiny Hermione with her giant mop of hair, it makes me so happy.

Manito Park

Liam and Mikey came over for a few hours today (Al was sick and RJ is at camp), and we took Lucy down to Manito.  She was terrible on the leash of course.  Katie, get her back in puppy school stat or Grammy canNOT walk her anymore.  My wrist is dislocated.

The boys, on the other hand, were good as gold.  Liam brought his fishing net and we spent quite a bit of time at the duck pond, looking for turtles.  He snagged a few with the net, so we got to get a good look at the little beasts before he put them back.  Mikey and I played at the playground, and Liam got in a baseball game with a group of kids.  The weather was pleasant, so we picnicked on PBJ's and big pink cookies.

Liam "sharing" Mike's lemonade.  Only minor rage over that.

Mikey looking thoughtful (or maybe this was just after the "lemonade sharing" incident)

We got sick of Lulu chasing every squirrel and duck in the park (well, trying to and being yanked up short), so we walked her back to the house.  Liam cleaned up dog poop and watered my plants for me while I mowed the back yard.  $2.00 well spent.  Mike cleaned up the XBox controllers we found in the garage, so he could take them home to use them.

A nice afternoon for Gramma Laurie, I don't get to see these rascals nearly enough. 

Sunday, July 17, 2011


Just finished Carson's Norwegian Sweet Baby Cap, in the "Carson" colored yarn I bought a while ago.  Easy knit, cute results. This hat is going to be sooooo cute on our Charlie Brown headed boy, with his giant smile.  I'll mail it tomorrow, Mama take a pic for me.  Even if it's wool and his little head-bone is going to sweat like mad while he has it on.


How did the US women just lose the World Cup?!  Yay for Japan, but still...

Found My Fabric

I heart this cotton fabric for my "Perfect Bombshell Dress".  My inner Ethel Mertz is screaming to be unleashed!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Another One of My Crazy Ideas

It just occurred to me that I share a birthday with Lucille Ball.  Maybe that is the reason I get these harebrained ideas.  That tend to look like something Lucy & Ethel would wear...

Anyway, I just found this cool new site called Craftsy, which is similar to Ravelry but with sewing and other crafts.  And I fell in love with this "Retro Bombshell Dress", which is an on-line course for making this darling dress.  With boning, muslin fitting, and all kinds of seamstress-y stuff. 

But it looks like fun.  And I have NO dresses.  And I can just picture myself in something like this (especially after I've lost a few pounds around the midsection).  So I am signed up for the course.

Stay tuned for further adventures in couture craziness.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Birthday Boys

RJ and Mikey share a birthday (Mom was smart to plan Mikey's arrival on RJ's birthday)  We've been planning a lunch and shopping date for a while, and I took them to Target (our favorite store, though Cabela's might run a close second):

 It's SO hard to choose what to buy!  Mikey was determined to look at EVERYTHING in the toy aisles.

 RJ and Mike got briefly mesmerized by the Hot Wheels display.  We also checked out Pokemon, Star Wars, Legos, and everything that wasn't in a pink box.  Or in the baby aisle.  Because we are 6 now (and 12!  I cannot BELIEVE our little RJ is 12!!!!)
After much deliberation, Mike got a box of Pokemon cards and RJ got a Star Wars game for the Xbox.  Of course, they lobbied hard for a "Rated M" game, but I ix-nayed that.  I generally get in trubs for what I let the boys buy (i.e., weapons of some sort), but I was determined to make wise choices this year.  Much to their chagrin.

We then went to the Red Lobster for a birthday lunch.  RJ is a seafood fiend.  And a teenager (almost).  Here's what he ate:
  • Bowl of clam chowder
  • Cheese biscuit
  • 8 crab legs (and this boy is all business when it comes to crab legs.  He did not leave ONE scrap of meat)
  • Ice Cream Sundae, and 1/2 of Mikey's sundae
  • and a giant Snickers Bar 
Either he is growing, or he is the host of the world's biggest tapeworm.  I was in awe.

It was a fun day, and the boys were so well mannered!  Even at a "nice" restaurant, they were very polite and well behaved.  And remembered to thank me for their gifts and a fun time.  The twins and I are planning our special day out for their birthday next month.

PS I forgot to get a picture of the 4 boys so you could see how big they are Car.  I'll try to get one asap!


I've had a sore back for the last 2 days.  Not fun AT ALL.  Nurse Katie has been fetching stuff for me, thank you Katie!  I'm finally feeling better this morning, so hope to be able to do some stretching.

I blame that yoga teacher for not having the "yoga in the park" class where it was supposed to be.

Monday, July 11, 2011

I'm Nervous!

I'm about to head off to my first "Yoga in the Park" class.  It's a 3 week class at Manito, just a few blocks away.

People, I am SO out of shape, so even though I love yoga, I'm really nervous about doing it with a group of people.  Trust me, I will not be achieving any poses remotely like the one pictured.  Between my fat cells screaming at me, my stiff joints, and "bwoken awm", I will probably be spending most of the time on my mat, in child's pose, crying.

So think of me over the next hour.  And Katie, if you hear screams coming from down the street, please come pick me up.

ETA: I went to the park, and waited patiently.  2 other (young and fit!) gals showed but no instructor.  BOO.  At least I got a walk in.  So there's that.  I'm now home, drinking a beer.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Garlic Scapes!

These are my new favorite thing!  I'd never heard of garlic scapes before a bag of them arrived in my weekly organic produce box.  They are "the flower stalk of hardneck garlic".  Since I'm trying to use at least half the produce I receive rather than tossing it ALL on the compost pile, I went in search of a recipe.

And found this White Bean and Garlic Scapes Dip , for which I (weirdly enough, because I usually have nothing that a recipe calls for) had all the ingredients, and even found the food processor.

IT IS GOOD!  It's basically hummus I guess, but man it is so tasty.  I want to just take a spoon and eat it right from the bowl.  But equally good with pita chips.

Yay!  I made something new!  And Katie and I are having spareribs plus fresh green beans, both of which we purchased at the Farmer's Market yesterday.  So dinner will def. be tasty.

Saturday, July 9, 2011


I love pickled green beans.  Absolutely love them.  But they are super expensive (like $7-9.00 for a jar).  I bought a jar at the Farmer's Market this morning, which was 7 bucks.  So now I'm on a quest to acquire canning supplies so I can make my own.  So far, I found a box of canning jars at a garage sale for $5.00.  Now I'm on the lookout for a canning kettle.  Actually, I own one, but I use it for yarn dyeing, so unless I want to take a chance on poisoning myself, I need a second kettle. 

Soon, I hope to be snacking on "Lavs' Extra-Tasty Pickled Green Beans".  I'm sure once I've gotten all the supplies and the fresh green beans, it will only cost me about $10.00 a jar :-)

PS, Zaide, remember berry picking @ Frontier Village?  And making jam?  Good times!

Friday, July 8, 2011

An Oldie but a Goodie

I am working at my desk today, and decided I needed some new tunes to listen to while I scan and list stuff in my store. 

So a visit to the  iTunes store was in order.  And I found one I had forgotten about, but is really my favorite Elton John album: Tumbleweed Connection.  Evidently Elton was in a bit of a cowboy mood for this one, and I really love the songs.  Plus it reminds me of college, where Tony L. introduced me to this album (among other things, right Tone?)  None of your beeswax what those other things were...

Best thing about this album?  It DOESN'T include the two worst EJ songs in the world.  Which are "Benny and the Jets" and "The Bitch is Back".

Sample Knitting

I've been doing sample knitting for several designers.  I just got the pattern book showing one of my sample sweaters.  It's fun to see my work modeled and professionally photographed!

The pattern book is Simplicity Volume No. 2 from Skacel, which our wonderful LYS Paradise Fibers just happens to have in stock.  Maybe I need to go hang out in their patterns aisle and offer to autograph the booklet :0

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Back on the Program

Katie and I returned to Weight Watchers last night.  We are both sick of being fat.  And know this program works (if you actually follow it, that's the "tricky part").  So our house will be good food HQ, with no cookies, booze, candy etc for the duration.

You CAN have all of these things on WW, just in moderation.  But I'm not really known for moderation so banishment seems better for me. 

Wish us luck!  And thanks for being my WW Buddy, Katie!

Monday, July 4, 2011

The Perfect Potato Salad

People are passionate about potato salad.  Or is it just me?  I firmly believe there is only ONE perfect potato salad recipe.  And it's not the one in this picture.  It's our mom's potato salad.

NO FANCY STUFF.  Do not add anything weird (especially do NOT put Miracle Whip or pickles of any kind in the PPS).  No celery, or other crunchy stuff.  No paprika or spices other than the 'trinity' (salt, pepper and garlic powder). All you need is:

hard boiled eggs
potatoes (I always use good ole russets), simmered until they are softened, but still firm
green onions
Best Food Mayo (I normally hate mayo in any form, it makes me gag to think about it.  But it's necessary in potato salad.  Must be Best Foods tho)
Salt, pepper and garlic powder.

dice the eggs and potatoes.  Throw them in a salad bowl with the green onions, which have been cut up into small pieces.  Add enough mayo to hold it all together, but not enough to make it a disgusting mayo-y goop.  Add more salt, pepper and garlic powder than you think it will need.  Stir it up.  Taste and add more S,P, or GP if needed. 

The perfect 4th of July dish.  My friend Lorraine was deathly ill a few years ago, and all she wanted (this was basically her dying wish, though lucky for us all she did recover) was a bowl of my potato salad.  I think the PS was what cured her.

Lucky Pup!

Winner, winner, chicken dinner!  I won "Great Balls of Wire" from Real Simple magazine :-)

Great Balls of Wire is a novel idea to organize your excess cables found around the house such as computer or TV cords. The tennis ball sized device can swallow up to 5 feet of cable and gives a simple and attractive solution to the usual mess of cables associated with modern life.

So now I'm lucky and organized.  Of course, this completely puts the kibosh on my winning anything in the Albertson's Summer Giveaway..

Fun at Camp

Just a quick report that I had a great time at Camp!  Why didn't I go before this?  The weather was grand, although there is NO way I'm getting more than my feet in any lake around here before August.  I enjoyed my stint as kitchen help, despite acquiring a big blister on day 1 as a result of picking up a super hot bowl from the dishwasher area (my main job was putting away dishes after washing/sterilizing.  Perfect, no brains involved and no cooking either).  The kitchen crew was an excellent team and I enjoyed working with the gang and actually did talk to strangers :-)

Katie and I had our own cabin with a bathroom, so that was definitely luxury living.  I got some knitting done, a little reading (note to self: do NOT bring your 37 pound "Autobiography of Mark Twain" on a camping excursion) and just relaxing. 

Friday, July 1, 2011

Off To Camp!

The girls are forcing me to interact with other human beings this weekend :-)  I'm heading out to Camp "Crotch" for the 4th of July Family Camp weekend.  Weather promises to be spectacular, and Lulu has already talked my ear off about all the fun stuff she is going to show me when we get there lol.

I'm a little nervous, bc I have this whole social anxiety thing going on, but I know P & K will take care of me and not make me talk to strangers (right girls?)  I have my knitting project all packed and Lucy and I are getting our grips packed.  Should be fun!