Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Off to Edgar's Acres

Tomorrow after work we are heading over to Edgar's Acres for vacation (at least for me). I am taking a ME vacation. This is the first vacation in ages where I won't be taking care of mom, kids, moving someone, or recuperating from surgery or injury. I'll be spending 10 days gardening in the a.m., doing whatever in the afternoon, and knitting in the summer evenings. I can hardly wait. My blogs will be spotty because we only have dial up but you will hear from me (that is if anyone is visiting The Yarnability).

You know, there is one advantage to dial up ... you get a lot of knitting done while waiting on the computer. I'm taking along my OHS 2007 knitting kit and will keep it next to the computer. These little socks only take about 2 hours to knit in total time.
All I need to have is the sock pattern, yarn, 16" size 7 needles, a pair of snippers, and a yarn needle. Pretty neat. And ...
it all fits into a quart size baggy and fits into my purse (no comment please on the size of the purse).

I am taking along plenty of knitting projects. The Heartbeat Sweater, enough yarn for 6 pairs of socks, yarn to start a new sweater, and yarn to knit another baby sweater for charity. I've also got my needle bag, notions bag, notebook of patterns, and knitting magazines.

I am also taking along three seed catalogs, two gardening books, and my seed box and gardening tools.

Because of the weather forecast, I am taking clothes for colder weather, and after the 4th (of course), when summer really starts around here, I am taking clothes for warmer weather.

I might even read a book.

I may have some friends come for a couple of days to weed a dandelion patch.

I might go to Taco Tuesday at the Elks.

Who knows. What is important here is, for 10 days I can do whatever I want. Heaven ... I'm in heaven...


Monday, June 25, 2007


We are now starting Operation Holiday Stockings 2007.

For those of you who don't know how this all got started, let me tell you a little story.
On April 12, 2005 our oldest son left for Iraq for a 12-month deployment. It wasn't easy. In the many emails I had with him I asked if I could knit him something, but he said that he was issued with everything he needed. That was until November 19, 2005. We were at Edgar's Place for the weekend. I was up at 5:00 a.m. with the dogs when I checked my emails (because he was 12 hours ahead of us). The LT sent me an email asking me if I could send him 288 small knit stockings for their holiday party. This was on a Saturday morning.
The Wednesday before I had a thorn removed from the index finger on my right hand and had a huge dressing on it. On Thursday, Susan came to my office over the lunch hour to teach me how to do circular knitting. She came in with double points, two circulars, and the 40" circular for the magic loop. She took one look at my finger and said "one circular is all you can handle." So I mastered making a baby hat with the 40" circular needle.
So here I am on Saturday morning with a request for 288 small knit stockings. I went outside with the dogs for a walk and looked up into the stars and said "God, did you see what the Lt has asked for? What do I tell him?" God very clearly told me "When your son is in Iraq, you don't say no." So I went back to the computer and emailed back "just 288?"
I then got on my computer and emailed everyone I could think of. To make a fabulous story short ... in two weeks we had collected 783 stockings to send to several companies in Iraq. It was a wonderful way for me to get through the holidays that year. We got back so many lovely notes from the troops, and certificates of appreciation.
When our Lt came back in March 2006, one of the first things he asked is if we were going to do Operation Holiday Stockings 2007. Of course we did. I asked him to find us a company to send the stockings to and he came back with a brigade, about 1000 soldiers, deployed to Afghanistan. Well, we did it again. Only this time we managed to compile 1576.

I promised my Lt that as long as we have troops in Iraq and Afghanistan I would head of Operation Holiday Stockings. No politics permitted, just love and prayers for our troops.

I have the first stocking ready, and am knitting the second one.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

What to Take

Tomorrow I leave for a knitting retreat at Edgar's Place. It's not a big retreat at all, just four of us knitters getting together to knit, laugh, drink and eat. No moms, no men, no mention of work for a whole weekend. We did this last February and had such a good time that we decided we needed to do it again for Summer Solstice. So, what to take. Well, take something I'm working on, right? Well, that leaves me with a lot to pick from so I narrowed it down to three:

The Heartbeat Sweater. This is my "at home" knitting. I am done with the front. It was FUN!!! I'm pleased with the way it came out. I am, however, banking on Jill's comment that the slanted sides will straighten out when the pieces all come together. I've started the back, and am ready to do the shoulders.

I love the way the piece does start out looking like a heart. I'm knitting the back on the 60" needles again because it is just easier to hold the piece up against me on the longer needles. I'll switch over to the 24" when I start doing the shoulders.
The Jaywalker Socks. This is my commuting project to and from work because it fits into my purse very nicely. (I know one of my neighbors saw me take this picture, and I am sure they were wondering why I was hanging a sock in my Clematis.) This is a fun sock to knit. I tried to try it on last night, and yes folks, it's too small even though there are 76 stitches on the size 1 needle, instead of my usual 72 stitches on size 1 needle. Grumperina did state that the sock doesn't sag and stays up nicely because it is knit on the bias. Well, it is also a tight fabric because of the bias and the ridges. Not a problem, I know just the person to give these socks to for Christmas. Fortunately, she has size 8 feet.

The socks for Mom (another commuting project). Mom has diabetic feet which are badly mishapened. She wants me to knit her a pair of socks. I took very detailed measurements of her feet and am hoping to come up with something. She wants something colorful enough for her to see, obnoxious, and loud. Well, I think the Lang BEBE Jacquard is colorful, obnoxious and loud enough for her. I love the way the colors are coming out. I am also fascinated with the way the yarn is stacked in the plastic bag. In order to make the sock flexible enough to go over her feet I am using a size 3 needle. I'll try it on my big feet this weekend to see what I think. I hope these work. The next challenge will be finding the sticky stuff to put on the bottoms of the socks to make them skid proof. Any suggestions?

Okay, well this exercise has helped me decide what to take. I do have Sally Melville's Einstein Jacket at Edgar's Place I could work on. And ... the big afghan is coming along for everyone to knit at least one row. Pictures will follow.


Baby Boomer Sue

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

NW Region Small Paws

AUGUST 25, 2007
See attached flyer and contact Kristine Carter at CarterKL05 at yahoo dot com (use @ for "at" and . for "dot")
Louie napping in the sun and shade
Dear Team Members:

Well, tomorrow is the first day of summer, and hopefully we will be getting some summer weather. Despite the rainy weather, Louie was able to find some sun one day for a nap.

We have been busy in our region with foster and adoptions. Kristine and her family are busy getting ready for the Bichon Bash on August 25th. Please plan on being there. I always look forward to it so I can visit with all of you in person. The fluffs have a blast at these bashes. It's too fun to miss.

I have something very serious to pass on to all of you. In fact, all of the rescue groups in the area are passing this on to their volunteers. DO NOT leave your dogs unattended in a car, or let them roam freely in an unfenced yard. In the last month there have been 7 dogs stolen from parked cars and unfenced yards in King County. Last year there were over 30 dogs stolen in Kitsap County. This is becoming a very serious problem. I haven't heard any statistics for the other areas, but law enforcement feel it is becoming a widespread problem. Yes, law enforcement is becoming involved because of meth labs, and illegal dog fights. Some of the thiefs have been bold enough to drive up into a driveway and call the dog over and grab them and then take off. I am not trying to alarm you but want you all to be aware of this situation.

As a reminder to all of you, if you need help, have questions, etc., please contact me first before contacting Robin or Bonnie. Part of my role as your Team Leader is to help you get information quickly. Robin and Bonnie are so buried with emails that they need you to contact me first. If I can't answer or help right away, I will get the information for you.

In the past few months we have had some "get it done now" situations for pickups, transport and fostering. I can't thank you all enough for your immediate responses for help. You make my job a pleasure and I am so grateful for your support. I know I have been (and still am) a bit slow on some responses, but please keep in mind I will get back to you. All of us have to make priorities and the emergencies have to come first. So seriously, THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

Now for the fun stuff!!!! LOOK AT THESE FACES

These are the fluffs we are currently fostering in the Northwest Region:
Ayden is a mill pup from Tulsa. He is being lovingly fostered by Rebecca in Grandview, WA. Thank you Rebecca for opening up your heart and home to this little boy.
Hiro and Jiro are an owner turn in and are being fostered by Kristine Carter. They are siblings and will be adopted together. Kristine, thanks for being there for these two dolls.

Muneca is one of our Mexican bichon/poodle mixes. She is 7 months old and coming along beautifully with her learning to be a loved pet. She is being fostered by Cindy in Sequim, Washington. Cindy thank you for everything you are doing for this timid and scared little girl.

[I apologize for not having a picture of Cloud. I lost it when my computer got the flu.]
Cloud is our other Mexican bichon/poodle mixes. She too is 7 months old and making amazing progress as a loved pet. She is being fostered by Ron and Maxine in Ocean Park, Washington. Ron and Maxine, thank you for being there for Cloud.
Angel Eyes is a mill pup from Tulsa, being lovingly fostered by Kaye in Boring, Oregon. Thank you Kaye for saying yes to fostering Angel.
Fritz is another mill pup being fostered with love and understanding by Bitsy in Olympia, Washington. Thank you Bitsy for giving this poor scared little boy a home and love.

Harry is an owner turn in being fostered with love by Pamela in Puyallup, Washington. Thank you Pamela for giving Harry the care and love to bring him back to good health.

Summer Saffron is a mill pup from Tulsa and is stil being fostered with love and patience by Kristine and her family in Arlington, Washington. Thank you again Kristine for loving this little girl.

These are the fluffs who have been adopted to their forever homes:
Mickey McGruff was fostered by Kathleen in Springfield, Oregon, and has now been adopted to his forever home. Thank you Kathleen for helping Mickey get ready for his new home.
March Mickey was fostered by Kathy in College Place, Washington. He has been adopted and is having a ball with his new forever family. Kathy thank you for helping this little mill pup get ready for his new family.

Keenen was an owner turn in from Tulsa and fostered by Gayle in Orofina, Idaho. He has since been adopted by Gayle and is a very, very, happy doggie. Thank you Gayle for fostering, and for falling in love with Keenen.

On this home front, A.J. had to have another three teeth removed. He is a mill dog who put in five years without any dental care. He is now 10 and throughout the past five years has had to have 18 teeth removed. The poor baby. He also had to have a mass removed and has 10 stitches on his chest. He must be feeling better because we can't keep him "quiet." In fact, I had to run him up to the vet because he popped one of his stitches in an hour's time. He is such a dear, and we feel so honored to have this "senior" in our family. I would appreciate it if you all would pray that the biospy comes back clear.

In closing ... BICHON BASH AUGUST 25TH. Please tell your adoptive families about this event, as well as anyone you know with a bichon, or a bichon wannabe.

Again, thanks for being such a wonderful team!


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Happy 85th Mom!

Yesterday was Mom's 85th birthday. Happy birthday Mom. It's hard to believe you are 85 and I'm 56, but we both are older, and maybe a little wiser.

I'm sorry I couldn't be with you this past weekend to celebrate your birthday, but duty calls and David worked all weekend. We did have fun the previous weekend though, didn't we? Louie was in prime form and loved sitting in your lap. I know you miss him more than anything and that you love him so very, very much. He misses you too! He is in good hands with us, though, and we love him too. It's cute, whenever we tell him we are going to go visit Grandma, he tilts his little head and lifts his ears, like "really?" He loves visiting with you.

I know you and I have had our many differences, and you have always known which buttons to push to get me going, but I love you all the same. I've spent 56 years trying to find which buttons to push on you, but you still have me beat on that. Mother and daughter relationships can't truly be explained, can they?

I miss you and wish we were closer, but we do have our Sunday evening chats on the phone, at least we have that.

Hope your birthday was fun with the company that came to see you. I thought of you all day.

Love you Mom.


Monday, June 11, 2007

Thank you Erin!

Erin, thanks for helping me get back me. Last year was dreadful not being able to garden. With your help. guidance, patience, and most of all encouragement, I am back in my garden, where I find balance and peace.
One of my favorite activities is gardening. It is an integral part of who I am. It is where God and I meet and have our one on one conversations. If I can't get my hands dirty digging in the dirt, I'm not happy.
When I had my accident and sustained the neck injury, I couldn't garden. Last year I was miserable looking at my yard and knowing it was missing me and the love and attention it deserved. I was only able to do a minimal amount of gardening in the veggie patch, and tend to a few flowers. And that was in the Sequim garden where the ground is level. Our garden in Bellevue is on a slope, with just a small flat portion at the bottom of the hill. I couldn't do much and both the yard and I suffered for it.
When I started physical therapy, my physical therapist asked what I wanted to be able to do again. Knitting and gardening. Erin is the best, she listened to what I said, and worked with me, and helped me get back into the dirt (and of course, back to knitting). I want Erin to see what I have been doing at least four days a week instead of coming into the gym to work out. I have my own stairclimber, weights to lift, and walking, lots and lots of walking, up and down stairs.

Erin, again thanks for helping me get back a big part of me.

Next chapter, this ...

This poor bed is a sorry, sorry mess.
Baby Boomer Sue

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

I LOVE This Sweater

I LOVE this sweater. It is my first top down sweater. I used the Neckdown Shaped T Shirt by Knitting Pure and Simple (, and the yarn is Elsebeth Lavold's Silky Wool in Color 22 (Eggplant) ( The blend is 65% wool and 35% silk, and worth every penny I paid for it. The feel of the yarn was heavenly as I was knitting it and the drape of fabric is very nice. The pattern was easy to read, with clear instructions that made sense to even me. Will I knit this pattern again? YES. I also liked the way I was able to make it to fit.

The interesting thing about this pattern is the number of needles it calls for.

24 inch circular needle size 5
24 inch circular needle size 3
16 inch circular needle size 5
16 inch circular needle size 3
double point needles size 5
double point needles size 3

That's a lot of needles for one sweater. I don't have the variety of needles that this pattern calls for so I used a 60 inch circular needle in size 5 and a 40 inch circular needle in size 3.
Now using the 60 inch needle may sound like overkill, and at first I thought it was, BUT, I made an amazing discovery. Using the 60 inch needles for the body of the sweater allows an ample knitter like me to try on the sweater WHILE the sweater is still on the needles. Pretty cool. I am discovering that using a 60 inch needle for my garments makes it a lot easier to either try on the garment or hold it up to me and have a smooth fabric.

Oh, and by the way, for those of you with eagle eyes (if anyone reads this blog that is) I know there is an errant thread that needs to be woven into the fabric. I'll catch that before I wash and block the sweater.

If you're wondering what the sweater looks like on the pattern, well, here it is. It's pretty close, isn't it. I can't explain why I am so excited, but it is a thrill to have a sweater that I knit FIT. And, the best part is, I've been told it looks beautiful on me. I won't be wearing it for a while because it is too warm to wear for a whole day, but on the first cool day this coming Fall, I'll have it on.

Baby Boomer Sue