30 January, 2015

Friday at last

This has been a looooooong week.  Maybe because I've been alone since Sunday night?  Or because it's been pretty quiet here at work ... I don't know.  Another weird thing -- the bus has been very uncrowded and the parking garage as well.  I was a little early this morning and I could have parked on the 2nd floor, but I've been that early before and had a hard time finding a spot.  Plus there hasn't been any standing on the bus for days and days.  It's too early for mid-terms, isn't it?  Maybe it's the flu epidemic.

I love getting home when there is still light in the sky.  I didn't need the flashlight on Tink's 5 o'clock walk last night.  It's still very dark in the morning, although on a clear morning there is a touch is color in the sky.  In another month it'll be much more noticeable.  But it's gotten colder.  The heat kept coming on this morning.  I thought I'd forgotten to turn it down before I went to bed last night, but on checking this morning it was set to 60, as usual.  It kept coming on so it was super cold in there this morning.

I'm looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow and Sunday.  But I've got lots to do as well because all my chores have to be done on Saturday so that Sunday can be dedicated to Super Bowl.  Oh!  Plus we're going to Purple for dinner tomorrow night.  That's a nice carrot for a day spent doing chores.  I'm doing red beans and rice for dinner on Sunday -- no Super Bowl party, just another couple.  I want to watch the game!  I think it's going to be a good one.  I hope.

29 January, 2015


Yesterday I was ready to run again and it was good!  I didn't even have to take an extra puff of my inhaler, which is fabulous.  It was run walk run walk but definitely more running than walking too.  When I got home I had a hot bath and this morning I have exactly ZERO aches and ZERO pains!  Woohoo!!  Just to be on the extra safe side I'm going to walk up to the store rather than run and then run again tomorrow.  If that goes well and by well I mean that my foot and/or toe doesn't flare up, I can run on consecutive days next week.  It is supposed to be raining all next week, but unless it is pouring, I don't care.  I'll be out there.

It has gotten just a little cooler and more seasonal.  In fact, there was a bit of frost on my windows this morning.  Just a little though.  I had a fire last night while I was knitting and watching Inside the NFL.  Only one more program to go and then football season is really truly over.  Imagine how much free time I'll have on the weekends.  Staggering the amount of time spent during football season on just watching. 

I am still stuck on what to do for the last part of my trip.  Perhaps I should put that tops on my list for tomorrow.  I have lots of details I still have to iron out - plane tickets for Paris to Venice and things like that.  A mountain of details.  Maybe that's what keeping me from starting.  I don't know ....  I just need to step up and do it!

28 January, 2015

Incentive or Drizzlefizzle

I was looking for a pattern on Ravelry for my Feederbrook Farms Entropy and came across the Incentive pattern.  It looked fun and perfect for the yarn and yardage so I bought it.  The pattern PDF called it Drizzlefizzle and I think that's as fine a name as Incentive. It's put together a lot like the Venomous Tentacula in that the border stays the same size and the garter stitch top grows.  By the way, I wear the Venomous Tentacula a lot!  As you can see, this Entropy colorway, Q (for Quark, I think) starts out lavender.  It does seems to have quite a bit of brown-y orange in it and a little more than I would like, but as I said, it's nice to branch out color wise.  I can't knit everything in green!  It's good TV knitting.  I will have the bottom portion memorized before long.  Each repeat comprises four rows, two picot edges.  The top part will grow to a certain number of stitches, then short rows, then more growing or decreasing.  And the yarn is lovely!  Soft and squishy. 

So that's what I did last night after Tink's walk.  I wound yarn and started this project.  I was a little worried about Tink but she seemed fine when I (finally) got home last night.  The bus was late and the traffic was bad.  A construction project is going to be started here at the U right in front of my bus stop and the road will be down to one lane.  I suspect getting home is going to be a hassle for a while.

I am looking forward to Inside the NFL tonight, although I imagine much of the time is going to spent on the deflated footballs question.  And then after Sunday football will be over for a while.  I dreamed about it last night, actually.  Someone was asking me if I wanted to watch an arena football game on TV.  I was appalled. 

Today I am going to run again at lunchtime.  It is the highlight of my day.  What does that tell you?

Emma emailed this morning.  She's all set to meet us in Florence in April!  That will be so much fun!!  Now I really really need to figure out the rest of the trip!  I don't want to go further into Tuscany if I have to take Italian buses and I don't want to rent a car.  So ... back up the coast or somewhere else?  Gah!! 

27 January, 2015

A little daylight

Since it's been so clear lately, I've been noticing that it is getting lighter.  I didn't need the flashlight when I took Tink out last night.  It's still plenty dark in the morning, but I saw the sun coming up on the way to the Transit Center yesterday too.   And warm?  Yes indeed.  Crazy warm again.  I haven't had a fire in days.  I kind of wish it would cool down to normal temperatures.  I like a fire in the evening.

When I got home last night Tinkerbell was going nuts -- even more than usual.  She couldn't wait to get outside and then she went straight for the greens.  She grazed off and on for about an hour.  When we come in from our walk she usually wants to play ball.  Last night she did not, nor had she eaten all day.  She stayed quiet all evening, but she did finally eat something.  She got up in the night for some water and this morning seemed her normal self.  She's going to be eleven next month. 

I got my latest YarnBox last night.  This month we got Feederbrook Farms Entropy.  I changed my color preference from green to purple because I was getting SO much green yarn.  This one has a little too much brown for my taste, being a kind of gradient yarn.  But I'm going to keep it.  I need to branch out.  Try new colors.

I am proud to say that I booked our stay in Florence yesterday.  I'm still going back and forth about going further into Tuscany.  I don't like Italian buses and that's what we'd have to take.  I think Tuscany is better done by car.  I want this to be a very easy vacation.  So .... back to Cinque Terre?  I have to figure it out sooner than later.

26 January, 2015

Crazy warm

We're having some sort of freaky inversion or something.  All weekend it was crazy warm!  Yesterday it was 63 degrees and today it will be the same.  Extremely odd weather for January.  I took advantage of it and took Tink to the park yesterday - along with about a billion other people with the same idea.  But I just couldn't stay indoors.  It was like spring!

All good intentions - but I didn't do anything on the itinerary nor did I pick up any knitting.  I wasn't in the mood for Jo's Pride and I am re-thinking the wrap I started.  I think it's going to be too heavy with the chunky yarn in there with the silk and sequins.  So I'm going to have to frog it. I need a good TV knitting project. 

It would be a great day to run.  I am over the soreness, but Tinkerbell is out of food so I'm going to have to walk to the Petco at noon today.  Tomorrow is knitting, so Wednesday is the day for running.  Hopefully Wednesday, Thursday and Friday this week.  That would be nice.

23 January, 2015

It was fabulous!

I was feeling some trepidation about my run yesterday, but it wasn't raining and my foot was just fine, so off I went.  Slowly slowly it went.  I ran a bit, walked a bit, ran some more, etc etc.  At 1/2 mile I stopped for another couple of puffs from my inhaler and then off I went again.  By 1 3/4 miles I was feeling ggrrrreat!  I did my entire 3 miles, about 2 minutes per mile off my usual pace, but that is to be expected.  And am I ever sore today!!  I will walk at lunchtime, rest on the weekend and run again on Monday.  Hopefully I can do four times next week, but I would be happy with three.  I want to work myself up to where I was, four times a week with a day off for knitting.  But I don't want to inflame this foot or toe or ankle.  So easy does it.  But I am super happy.  The sun even came out for a bit!  And the angels sang - softly.

Today I'm going to do my best to finish up the itinerary.  I will book Florence accommodations and do some research into where in Tuscany we should spend the last five days before heading back to Paris.  Steve & Ginny went to Tuscany on a wine tasting tour.  I should get in touch with them.

Nothing much on for the weekend.  A trip to a new (for me) brewery in Woodinville tonight, tomorrow maybe an appointment with the manicurist, and then I'm on my own Sunday through Friday.  I need to visit Trader Joe's to stock up on girlie food - spinach & kale pie, chicken meatballs, salad.   I should be able to get some good knitting done too.  I'd like to get a few hours in on the Jo's Pride and block some things I've got hanging around.  Lots on the plate.

22 January, 2015

Working on that darned itinerary

Okay I'm getting closer to getting this trip figured out.   Hooray for me, yeah?  I had totally spaced Emma's birthday - April 27.  She does want to meet up and so I think I'll suggest she comes to Florence.  That way we don't have to go way out of our way on the return trip to Paris and can spend more time in Italy.  Perfect.  I'm going to work on this today and try to put as many pieces together as possible.  I was reading a bit about Siena yesterday and got an idea.  The book was talking about wine tasting classes in English.  I had such a fun time last year in Mexico taking that cooking class.  Therefore, I'm going to read a bit more and see about maybe going further into Tuscany (south) and finding some cooking classes.  That would be so cool!

I didn't touch my knitting last night.  It was "Inside the NFL" night and then reading.  I was looking for a new Sarah Dunant book, but she doesn't have one that I haven't ready.  Ah ha ..... but she had written a few books BEFORE I discovered her historical books.  I bought one of those a few days ago and that's what I'm reading.  It's called "Birth Marks" and features a detective named Hannah Wolfe.  It's definitely an early work.  The story is good though.

It's been a long time coming but today I am going to try running again.  Well, it'll be more like walk walk walk run walk walk walk run ..... slowly.  Besides my foot my lungs are out of shape.  As long as my foot is okay I suspect this time it'll take me a good two weeks to get back into a good pace.  I'll go out if it's sprinkling but not if it's pouring, so let's hope for the best.

21 January, 2015

Tuesday knitting

How many years have I been doing noon knitting?  A long long time.  Now that it's moved to Tuesday it throws my entire week off, especially when there is a long weekend.  Despite reminding everyone on Friday, one of the ladies forgot her knitting entirely.  But there are always books to look over and plenty of idle chat - knitting and otherwise.  I got my Jo's Pride back on track and found a cardigan that I really want to make.  I am feeling guilty about the two projects that I've put aside.  Will I pick them up again?  I don't know.  I might take the alpaca I have for the Iwi pullover and use it for an open front cardigan. 

After having a terrible night's sleep Monday night I was feeling quite sleepy yesterday.  I made a nice fire when I got home and settled in for a night of reading.  Onion soup for dinner and some fresh bread and I was in bed by 9:30 and out like a light.  I woke up one time during the night, which is excellent for me because Tink manages to wake me every night.  Usually it's more than once.

I am getting closer to finishing up my itinerary for the trip this spring.  I want to contact one last friend over there and make sure we can connect.  So I can't finish up until I know if we're going to be going to Belgium or Luxembourg on the way back from Italy.  And then how many nights should we spent in Paris on the back end?  I just have to make the decisions and sometimes that's difficult.  I have been feeling a little wishy-washy lately.  It's a phase.  I hope it hurries away. 

20 January, 2015

Quite spectacular

Well, does it get much better than this?  A weekend that starts out with a visit to Tiffany's and ends with a football win for the ages.

There was one last Christmas present waiting for me Saturday morning in Bellevue - a cute necklace from the Tiffany interlocking circles collection!  I love it! Especially the little clinking noise that it makes.  I had to have my hair done Saturday morning, so that threw my weekend off a bit, but I got a very early appointment so errands were done early enough. 

Sunday was THE game.  The Seahawks won and are going to the Super Bowl again, this time to play the Patriots.  The game was extremely exciting and went into overtime.  The Seahawks were behind for most of the game, so the comeback was one for the ages.  And Green Bay was floored.  They thought they were going to win, for sure.  Now we wait for two weeks for the Super Bowl.  I do NOT want to go to a party.  I want to watch the game.  That might mean a little white lie here or there, but completely worth it.

Yesterday was pretty quiet.  The weather was decent, so I took Tink to Cottage Lake park in the morning, and then then for another long walk in the neighborhood in the afternoon.  I did laundry.  I went to the mall.  I knit on Sunday, late into the night, so I wasn't really in the mood for that.  I read.  And read.  It was lovely.

16 January, 2015

It's about those Christmas lights

In our little cul-de-sac neighborhood a few of us put up Christmas lights, some more elaborate than others and some done by professionals.  The first house with lights had them done professionally and I was in awe of those men up there on that extremely steep roof, lining the dormer windows with lights.  They must be on a timer, because I notice in the morning when I'm walking Tink that they go out at 6:45 am.  Now though, everyone has taken their lights down except these people.  Still on the timer.  I suppose they want to get their money's worth, having them done professionally.  But hey, enough's enough. 

What's on for the weekend?  Ah .... Seahawks football, that's what!  If the Seahawks beat Green Bay this weekend they're going to the Super Bowl, so that's all that is on everyone's mind, on the radio, talk on the bus, etc.  I don't know yet if we'll be staying home to watch.  I would much rather do that than be with a bunch of people, half of whom are really not interested in the game.  Yeah, well we'll see.

Monday is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which means a long weekend for me.  I've got an appointment for my hair and then that's about it.  Sleeping in is going to be tops on my list.  I have a couple of things to exchange so if I don't get that done Saturday I can take care of it Monday.  And maybe I can find my knitting mojo.

15 January, 2015

Just one more episode

That's what happened to me last night.  I stayed up way too late catching up on the Showtime series "Episodes".  The new season is just starting and I never finished season three.  I didn't finish it last night either, but I got close.

Therefore, I am sleepy today.  Soon I will go outside and walk around and try to wake up.  It's cloudy, but not yet raining.  I think it's going to start raining and keep on for a week.  Hooray. 

I miss my LYS.  The store didn't go out of business, but moved up to 65th & Roosevelt, which means it is not a visit I can make at lunchtime.  I guess I could walk up to Bartell's and get some Kleenex.  I like to have a destination at lunchtime.  I stay out longer if I do.  Otherwise I get cold, just strolling around listening to my book.  I am still listening my way through the Outlander series.  How many months now have I been listening to those books?  I can't remember.  Three at least, maybe more.  I need to find a book for my Kindle app though, for reading at night.  I finished my book while I was sick.

14 January, 2015

Could the flu shot have helped?

Friday I didn't last long at work.  At lunchtime I went out for a walk thinking that maybe I'd feel better after some fresh air, but I kept feeling worse and worse and just went home finally.  I was dragging and achy all weekend. 

The football was good though.  Seattle won again.  Now we're in the NFC championship game with Green Bay this Sunday here in Seattle.  That'll be a good game.  I had also been looking forward to the first college national championship game - Oregon Ducks vs Ohio Buckeyes.  Not a great game.  The Ducks were beat soundly.

I ended up staying home from work both Monday and yesterday. I made it in today.  I am feeling better, at least the continual body ache is gone.  I'm a bit stuffier than I have been, but I am not tired.  Let's see how the day goes.

Not much knitting done either.  I did a few rows on a spring shawl I'm doing but that's it.  I need to get my count right on the Jo's Pride.  I think I messed it up at the last noon knitting.  I need some quiet time to do that.  Maybe tonight, but I doubt it.  I'm not in the mood.

09 January, 2015

A big ol' dose of vitamin D

It is getting colder and it's very foggy today.  It started out that way yesterday as well, but the sun did come out and I took full advantage of it, going on a long walk at noontime with my face to the sun.  It was wonderful and really did make me feel better.  After lunch I even got myself together enough to book some places for the trip.  I got AirBNB going and booked a place in Paris, near to where I lived, but closer to Place des Voges (one of my favorite places).  And then I booked a teeny weeny place in Venice.  It is small, but the price is right and it's away from the tourist section in a neighborhood.  Just what I'm looking for.  Next is Florence, then Cinque Terre and from there I am not sure.  At least I've finally got a start on it!

I can't warm up.  The bus was cold this morning, despite being packed as usual.  I was restless this morning.  I kept waking up and I don't know why.  Was it because Tink was restless?  Because I was cold?  I don't know.  It's just annoying and now I'm groggy. 

This weekend is all about football.  And next Monday is the first college championship and that will be a good game, I am hoping.  I want to get some good knitting done and that's about it.  Here's to a nice, quiet weekend.

08 January, 2015

It's all about the timing

And I can't seem to get it down!  I knew that this week the traffic would be much worse than the past few weeks because of school starting up again.  Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I just barely made the bus.  This morning Tink was quite efficient in her morning routine and therefore I pulled out of the driveway at 6:50 rather than 6:55 or 6:57.  The traffic was bad up until about 124th, where people can cut off to get to the 405.  Typically it's just as backed up after that but this morning it was smooth sailing and I got to the parking garage with 10 minutes to spare!  Ah well.  I'll get it.  I just want something between having to cool my heels waiting for the bus and having to dash down the stairs and run for it.

I got a good little run at my itinerary yesterday, but I am still having a hard time with it.  I feel like things are just about to burst wide open though.  I'll have it finished in a week, maximum.

Noon knitting was fun, after a little break.  We're moving it to Tuesdays to accommodate a regular meeting that has been scheduled for one of the ladies on Wednesdays.  That's going to make my week feel a bit off for a while. I wonder how many times I'll forget my knitting? I only got 1 1/2 rows done because I was yapping and lost count on the wrong side row.  I will have to find some quiet time this weekend to fix it.  Last night was "Inside the NFL" and early to bed to read again. 

Tink woke me once for a drink of water, but otherwise I slept like a baby and I must have gotten a solid 8 hours, taking that into consideration.  That being said, I am still SO tired!  I know it's got to be because of the constant darkness.  I wake up in the dark.  I drive to the parking garage in the dark.  It dawns on the ride in, but unless I get outside at lunchtime I don't get any appreciable sunshine because it's getting dark when I catch the bus home and by the time I'm there walking Tink it's dark again.  Some years the seasonal darkness doesn't bother me that much and others .... this is one of those years I guess.

07 January, 2015

Getting bogged down

I don't understand exactly how or why it happens.  It is like when I lose my  knitting mojo.  Procrastination at its worst.  I can't seem to get out of this rut!  But I must get myself back on track.  It could be just seasonal malaise because of the lack of daylight.  Perhaps once I start (there's that word - start) planning my trip things will loosen up.  Or maybe if I could just get myself running again, that would do it.  I am expecting that I should be able to get out there and at least run a minute walk a minute by next Monday.  I think I am being overly optimistic that the pain from my foot will disappear.  I may just have to deal with it.  Whatever it takes. 

How difficult is it going to be to stay awake at my meeting this morning?  At least I have some work to do today and noon knitting to look forward to.  Since I didn't pick up my knitting again last night.  I caramelized onions last night.  I have never really done that before, not correctly and not on purpose I should say.  It takes about 45 minutes to do it right, but yummmm.  A great addition to a steak.

06 January, 2015

Time to start planning

I made the plane reservations months ago, but I haven't really gotten down to setting my itinerary for the three weeks in April and May.  And I have GOT to start planning!  I have fourteen weeks to go, and I've not gotten any farther than a vague idea of where we should go.  I don't know why I'm having such a hard time with this but the time has come and plans need to be at least starting to be formed.  I did figure that taking the train to Venice, while a fun way to go on a sleeper, is a waste of time and money.  So we'll fly to Venice from Paris.  And then?  Florence I think.  After that?  I am torn - I am not all that keen on Rome and instead maybe we'll go to the coast.  I don't want this trip to be one mad dash after another.  I want plenty of time to just sit and absorb.  It's been so long since I've spent any time in Italy.  I think the last time was when I was living in Paris and my friend got married in Italy.  That's nearly 15 years ago -- well, it will be 15 years in June.  Isn't that crazy?

Do Nothing Monday was glorious.  The house was clean, the dinner just needed to be heated.  A couple doggie walks, a nice hot shower and in bed with a book and a nice glass of wine at 8 o'clock.  I know it sounds slothful, but a couple of hours in bed with a good book is a luxury.  And not something that you can do in the spring and summer when it's still light outside!  I guess I must have had my fill of knitting, what with knitting five hats before Christmas and then my stay-cation day knitting.  I haven't picked up either piece since Friday, or maybe Saturday.  Tomorrow is noon knitting so I know I'll get at least two rows done then.

I am really anxious to start running again.  My asthma is finally back under control.  My foot .... a little dicey, especially after that incident last month.  But I am wearing high heels to work and changing into my running shoes in the afternoon for a long walk.  The high heels are a challenge but I believe as long as I keep switching back to flat shoes after a few hours it'll be fine.  In other words, I have been able to keep from aggravating it to the point of needing to ice it.  By the middle of this month I should be out there doing my 3 miles.  I WILL be out there.

05 January, 2015

I did not want to get up

Oh dear.  How hard was it to get up and out this morning?  Ridiculous.  I had such a wonderful week and a half.  It was so relaxing.  Getting back into the routine of going to work was terribly hard.  I didn't stay up too late, thank goodness, so I wasn't really tired this morning.  But it's dark and it was pouring rain and I knew the traffic would be awful.  I was right.  It was bumper to bumper nearly all the way to the parking garage, then there was the search for a parking spot.  It was that full.  And I'm wearing very high heeled boots and I had to "run" for the bus.  I was carrying my week of lunches and fruit and milk in a bag, purse on my shoulder and holding an umbrella.  I wasn't so much running as kind of walking fast.  I am sure I looked quite foolish.  But I made the bus and I got a seat, which is more than I can say for the people who got on later. 

So what did I do with the embarrassment of time and leisure?  I cooked Christmas Eve dinner, I had a lovely Christmas day.  A fun little overnight in Bellingham, some great shopping.  I knit nearly every day, I slept in and that was perhaps the best part of the entire stay-cation.  Tink got some nice long walks, although my plan of driving to a new park every day did not pan out.  The weather wasn't fabulous.  It was, in fact, quite cold.  I took a vacation from blowing my hair dry - just let it go wild for a week.  I watched quite a bit of football.  I cooked some fabulous meals.  I worked on my Jo's Pride, but that it slow going!  Seriously - it's 30 minutes for each row still, even though it is decreasing.  But size four needles with sock yarn, that's small.  It's gorgeous, but wow, it is a slog.  I think I spent two hours on it one day, maybe three.  Then other times I would just do a couple of rows.  I am now on row 18 of the decrease section, which was started after 28 rows of the border.  This decrease section goes for 45 rows.  You do the math .... I'm going to have days into this by the time it's done.  For TV knitting I started a fun triangle that I am going to put tassels on the three corners.  It will be a great spring scarf/wrap.

I did a fair amount of reading and not any binge TV watching.  While it was cold, it was not raining or snowing outside and I just don't feel right having the television on during the day - that is unless it's a weekend and I'm watching sports, or I'm sick in bed.  Otherwise I just like the silence.  I am very proud to say that Christmas got cleaned up Saturday - the tree, the decorations outside all put away.  And good thing too, because it started raining on Sunday and it would have been much easier to put off.  Now it is done and put away. 

Of course there were two work related emails that I made the mistake of looking at, but I am proud to say that I did nothing about them.  I wanted a real vacation plus it irks me that people wait until the very last minute.  So I have a full plate this morning.  I should get to it.