Thursday, August 24, 2006


Tuesday: The Daughter calls in the morning to tell me that the SWAT team has evacuated all the students from Squires at Virginia Tech, classes were cancelled, and VT was on lock-down. And that she was fine. The guy who shot and killed two people was captured on VT grounds later that afternoon.

Wednesday: Late Night. Good company, good conversation, good times. Much needed, much refreshed. I was really glad I could be there, since I have to work on Thursday and Friday, and will miss the AWESOME sale.

Thursday: Found out that Sister#2's beautiful home in Chicagoland was hit by lightening this morning at 6 am. School has started there, so all were awake. She got the kids and dogs out safely. One of the dogs was very frightened and hiding, but they were able to find her at the last minute. All are well. The fire was very extensive, wiping out a large portion of the house as well as the garage and several cars -- lots of fire, smoke and water damage. The house is uninhabitable and will require a massive amount of work.

She has been so generous to all of us in her home. In addition to my parents' home, it is where we gather to spend time together, mark joyous occasions, bake cookies, celebrate holidays, including the incomperable New Year's bash-- it is our gathering place.

I just don't know what to think. There's nothing I can do to help, except send prayers.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Croppin', Croppin', Croppin'

I do other things besides knit. For example, I'm a nurse. And as a nurse, we are expected to do other things besides taking care of patients. So I teach, and I write articles, and I work on committees, and I do projects. One of the projects I'm up to my neck in is the annual calendar. It's lots of fun, but holy cow-- it's a lot of cropping.

If you've done much in the way of scrapbooking, you know that it's a wonderful creative outlet. But with all the bells and whistles, journalling, embellishing, color coordinating and the like, it can take a couple of hours to produce one lovely page.

Well, the calendar has a cover, 12 lovely pages for the months, and a back page. Or two.

Scrappers do "crop-til-you-drop" parties-- lots of fun, get together, and maybe get a page or two done. So why not just do one of those? Because it needs to be tied together. The powers-that-be would be most unhappy if it didn't look like a unified project. So we ARE going to do a paste-up party, but everything needs to be ready first.

So I'm croppin'-- and pretty soon I may be droppin'.

You may not hear from me for awhile.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

…It’s All Part of Growing Up

Letting go, that is.

The Daughter just left for school. Packed up the car, and drove off. It’s her 3rd year at Virginia Tech, and you’d think that by now I’d be used to it. And maybe I am, a bit. No tears this time from me, although they're probably right under the surface. It was wonderful to have her home, but we had so little time together this summer.

My work was brutal there for awhile, and she was in summer school and working. She was only able to spend the first weekend of our family reunion vacation at Lake of the Ozarks. Our time together is so precious—and I was really grateful that she agreed to leave today so that we could spend yesterday together.

We had fun!

We hit the beauty shop for cuts, color and hightlights. Unfortunately, I have only “before” and “during” pictures, and she would be a very unhappy daughter if I posted those. Had I taken “after” pictures, you would be quite impressed because we are quite lovely.

Fortunately, I had a rare couple of hours to knit, and I made great progress on a Heartbreakingly Cute Baby Kimono from Mason-Dixon Knitting. (Maeve the Marvelous inspired me, as she’s been whipping out these things like crazy. Go to the second posting down, and you'll see a lovely green one that she did.) I started it at Late Night on Wednesday, and am more than halfway done. It’s truly a great and easy-to-knit baby project. On another note, the wee sockies are finished, and I’m planning a hat or something to go along with them. (Or maybe one of them there kimonos?)

After 4 hours of this hair business, we headed off to King Street Blues for some wings and Diet Coke, and then some back-to-school shopping.

When she was little, that meant paper, pencils, crayons and new shoes. Now it means paper towels, Ziplok bags, Hamburger Helper, cold medications, freshly ground coffee and cases of soda, as well as any gadgets for the apartment that we could purchase now so that "Me-The-Mom" pays.

I’m not falling-apart distressed, since we have VT football season tickets, (YAY! In the Club section!!!!) and I’ll see her in a couple of weeks. It’s just that every year they get a little older, and I have to let go a little more. I hope I’ve done a good enough job…

Vacation was fun

It is always wonderful to be with my sibs and their spouses and kids. I spent a bit more time in the pool this year, frequently with beer bottle in hand.

It was hotter’n blazes, and the pool warmed up to nearly bathtub temp by mid-afternoon. One of the kids threw some ice cubes in at one point. Mom is amazing. She finished the last chemo just before our week, and was moving a bit slowly, but hit the pool every afternoon. We made shade for her by putting a couple of deck chairs on their sides and draping towels.
The Lake of the Ozarks is a lovely place—butterflies and hummingbirds all over the place. There was a deck outside our room where we had coffee every morning, and read books when it wasn’t too hot.

The morning we left, we got this picture of 2 of my sisters, my Mom and me. Except for missing my other 2 sisters, I think it’s one of my favorites.