Friday, July 31, 2009

Other truths and secrets from my summer vacation

Remember when you were a kid?  Summer was sweeping up, autumn waited quietly in the wings, and your first assignment (while your teacher tried frantically to compare the attendance list with the class roster) was "How I spent my summer vacation".  If this was my assignment, this is what I would say:

There is a special therapy that occurs when I drive a long distance, a re-creation of sorts.  I learned several things this year.  For example, I learned that although I learned several behavior response patterns through my life, I don't have to keep all of them.  Of course, it took roughly 600 miles to reach this ephipany, and it will probably take a year to implement the corrective measures, but hey, there was a thought, and I had it, and I will probably keep it, too.

I learned that there is something fiercely wonderful about driving through the back of beyond, singing with Marshall Tucker, and suddenly, decades melt together.  Satellite radio or I-pods won't do this- the music has to pop up spontaneously.  You drove this 
route then, you are driving it now, and that song is still a great one for the trip.  Is it the seventies or the nineties?  Does it even matter?

I learned that even though your friends or family might have stepped off into the abyss, and returned as people you can't or should not love (and there are some, folks, because I am talking about the ones who challenge your sense of self-preservation) their children are still wonderful.

I also learned that although MY family was really quirky and odd early on, almost every family IS messed up, although it might take years to show.  

Somewhere in my travels, I saw an article which stated that the auto crisis had a disproportionate effect on rural America.  I saw first-hand EXACTLY how badly Detroit handled things-I drove through many towns that had only one car dealer "Tubby Johnson's Cadillac, Jeep, Chrysler, Pontiac and Saturn Autorama" and now these folks are stuck holding a plateful of yesterday's news, and the only car dealership in 200 miles is teetering on the edge of extinction.  Tubby's family is staring at the spectre of losing it all, and the dealer's mechanics, sales manager, and parts department wonder where they are going to make enough to buy school shoes and pay off the dishwasher.  And whole counties that "bought American" for decades because they felt it the right and decent thing to do were lied to.  How does the automotive industry explain itself?  

I learned that you don't need special fancy applications and lenses to get a soft focus photo on your camera phone.  Simply let a six-year old play a game on your phone, and her fingerprints will do the trick.

We are still a great country.  Don't let the naysayers tell you otherwise.  I know, because I saw it.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Rating the yarn stores of Colorado Springs

I went to three yarn stores when I was home.  Here's my take on all of them-

Knitter's Cove-Union Blvd:  On summer hours.  I showed up at 10 one morning, and they didn't open til noon.  By noon, I was knee deep in diapers and singing the popsicle song.  Miss.

Table Rock Llamas:  Outstanding.  This was DGD's first visit to a yarn store, and while there were no actual llamas, we had a good time.  This store is MUCH bigger than you'd expect when you walk up, with a roomy extension (weaving, fleece and classrooms) out back.  I know DGD is tactile, but it never dawned on me how much she would enjoy yarn petting.  Grambee can be so dense.  We picked up some fleece.  DGD made felt beads with it, and really enjoyed herself.  This was also a delight because a squirrel raided a pile of peanuts on the back porch.  A hit.

The Yarn Outlet-8th Street:  They got my money.  I was delighted to find Austermann Mayfair (discontinued in 2004?) on sale, as well as some other older yarns, which I scooped up greedily.  It pays to know your yarns-there were some real dandies and some that were easy to breeze right by.   It warranted a second trip.  A BIG hit.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

How I spent my summer vacation Part I

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I'll be back later

Sunday, July 12, 2009

I want to keep this thought-

One of my friends has this on her Facebook page.  I don't know where it comes from, I don't care; I just didn't want to lose this train of thought......

Be brilliant at the basics. Be the change you want to see in the world. Be the first one. Be the only one. Be unforgettable. Be interesting. Be a sleeper. Be that guy. Be the world's expert on yourself. Be better than yesterday, but not as good as tomorrow. Be confident enough to be humble. But be somebody who reminds everybody of nobody else in the world.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

You might want to donate that dress....

No, really.  
KENS5 San Antonio, Kelli Patterson

Hey, these WORK

I'm a sucker for hair clips.  I don't love the clampy clip things.  I don't love that beaded elastic comb they show on TV.  I like these.  They work.  I'll probably pick up another one.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

The last little ho-house in Texas?

A while back, I purchased an ambient weather beacon for my husband.  It shows the next day's weather forecast as indicated by a radio weather beacon, in increments of 10 degrees, each segment represented by a different color.

Embarrassingly enough, when I set it up this week, our recent weather pattern makes it look like we've opened up a new business:

It's been hot as hell, I have ant bites on my ankles (GRRRggrrh!) and ammonia on the ant bites.  I always thought my husband was really working hard to sweat thru the front of his shirts.  This week it dawned on me that my bra was retaining water....or at least, absorbing all the sweat.

We need a break from this heat!

Sunday, July 05, 2009

It's hotter than July-

A few weeks ago, I rinsed off the back patio and found a lot of bird crap.  This weekend, I found out why.  We actually saw them panting.  It's damned hot when the birds are panting.

I moved the china cabinet, and in the process, washed almost everything in it.  Yesterday, I happened across these Czech flutes that I bought in Karlovy Vary for notmuchmoney.  When I bought them, I remembered the lovely blue decanter that sat on the hi-fi at Laura Meyer's house. 

 I remember Mr. Meyer had a heavy accent, and now that I am older, I wonder if he came here away from his home to escape something bad in Europe.  I also remember Holly Hodek's dad, and how he spoke in clipped tones, rather like Lawrence Welk, and wondered if he came or he fled.

Those people are the true cornerstone of our independence.  I hope this weekend was enjoyable.

Friday, July 03, 2009

Hell, I am such a packrat, I have family I didn't know I had.

In the category of "things Bets ain't supposed to know about" I present a DGD.  Just roll your eyes, mmmkay?  Family is complicated, and mostly, they bring it on themselves.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

More Sonata colors-

I got mad at the entrelac-I just want it in Sonata print.  Boo!  I managed to order one more bag in a low contrast color-so I frogged the light blue.

In the meantime, I found this Sonata, and cast on something for DGD.  I've got a lot, hope it's enough!