A View From the Field









November, 2007



November 30

So November is history.


It was a little warmer at the north end than it had been in the morning, so I knitted a while before I took my bath. I have some new yarn that not only knits on #2 needles, it has a little elastic in it, so it is very stretchy and should make really nice socks. Besides, it is wild - red, fuchsia, and purple in small spots. Nice winter yarn. It knits easier than I was afraid it would, so I started the ribbing.


Then I went off to bed and slept very well. It didn't seem to me that the wind was so strong when I went to bed, but it began to pick up around 4:00, and it has been in the 20-40 mph range ever since. At 6:00 this evening, the report was 32 mph with 45 mph gusts. Add to that, the temperature has been between 11º and 14º. and it has been snowing constantly. It has been a very hairy day.


The storm warning we were under has expired now, and it is a little calmer, although it is still snowing lightly, but there is another storm about to come through tomorrow night. Well, we wanted snow. We got snow!


They are going to start grooming the snowmobile trails tomorrow, and in fact, somebody at Mariner said they had heard the groomer already. I'm sure there is enough snow to ride in...or ski in...or whatever.


I didn't do much again today. Buster was disgusted that I knitted this morning, but it was marginally warm in the bathroom and I find that a pretty good way to wake up. He likes to sit on my lap and get petted in the morning, but after a while whatever I am doing isn't what he wants, so he stops purring. No purr, no pet. So I knitted a while.


It is a little warmer in the house than it was yesterday, probably because the wind has shifted some and is now out of the north. It still isn't warm in the great room, but the office is tolerable and it was a good temperature in the bedroom to sleep.


I was going to go and get my packages today, but Ron offered to pick them up for me, so I said fine. It turns out that they were my lamps from Pottery Barn, already. That was fast! Unfortunately, I don't have any 25 watt bulbs for the star lights, and I'm not sure I have a three-way for the table lamp, but at least I will be able to get them unpacked and ready to plug in. I've got other things outstanding that I would rather have. Oh, well.


Anyway, that meant I didn't have to make two trips out. I did go to dinner. I was just tired of what I have to eat around here and I wanted somebody else's cooking for a change. There were a few people there, and it was a kind of jolly group, so that was nice. The people whose house on Lake Lily is finishing up are here, and their builder is having an open house tomorrow, so it was nice to see them.


The only thing I don't like about this weather is the time it takes to get dressed to go outside...hat, parka, gloves, mittens...I look like the Pillsbury dough girl by the time I get everything on. For the time I was outside, I probably didn't need all that, but with the wind sweeping down the street in front of Mariner, I was glad I was dressed warmly and sorry I didn't have my longjohns on.


Now it is time to toddle up to the north end and knit a while - or something - before the wind and the waves lull me to sleep once more. It's winter in Keweenaw, and maybe it will be a good one.


November 29

I knitted until I started having trouble counting. You have to count lace, and when I can't count to three, it's time to give up. So I was late again, but I did get to bed about 12:30. 


When I got into bed, I got right up again and put on a flannel nightie. It just felt like I was going to want the extra warmth, and I was certainly right! The NWS forecast totally underestimated the wind speed overnight, and with the wind from the north-northwest, it got rather cool in the north end...when I got up this morning it was 60º in the bedroom and 63º in the bathroom. So Buster got only a short petting, and I jumped into my clothes.


The phone woke me up at 9:15, and it was UPS asking if it was OK to leave my packages at the Gaslite. No way can that big step van get down the road now. So I went back to sleep for about 45 minutes before I really had to get up. That was when I noticed it was rather chilly in the bedroom.


I closed the vertical blinds on the front windows, which I hate, but it does help keep the temperature up. I really should put some kind of shades on the windows in the window seat, but I just hate to do it. Anything I put there would cut down on my view of the outside. Maybe I should just put insulated drapes across the front of the seat and be done with it...wouldn't that look lovely!


It was only 63º in the office when I go there, but I closed the door almost completely and after a while I pushed the temperature up a bit, and it is now quite comfortable, although I notice that when the door is closed, I don't get the humidity from the humidifier, so that is down. I have a thermometer probe hanging on the sliding door, and the temperature by the door is 55º.


All that is because the outdoor temperature was 20º or below all day, and it is now dropping, and the wind was in the 20-30 mph range for most of the day. It peaked at around 10:00 this morning with sustained 28 mph and gusts to 41 mph. Hey, it's cold around here. And it snowed almost continuously all day, sometimes more heavily than other times. How much we really got is, as usual, hard to say, because of the wind. The south end of the deck is scoured clean, and behind the breezeway there is a bare area about 3' wide, and nicely sculptured drifts right beyond it.


I haven't paid much attention to the driveway because I didn't go out, and Ron said he cleared it this morning, but there is a respectable amount of snow in it.


I diddled around, as usual, although every so often I would get so cold I had to move or eat or something. I started stoking the dishwasher and picked up the usual trash that had gotten strewn around. I'm going to have to go to the compactor one of these days. The catalogs have avalanched all over the office, and so have the empty boxes, so any time I want to do something, I have plenty to do.


At least one time between snow squalls I looked out the south window and I could actually see a little blue sky, with those big, billowy lake effect clouds under it. It was neat.


I keep hoping this bodes well for the winter. The winter of 2000-2001, which was our last 300" winter, started late like this...I will never forget December 13, nor will Debbie, and that was in southeastern Lower Michigan. Once it started, it just kept snowing and snowing and... 


And my friends in the tourism business in Copper Harbor really need a winter like that. The Mountain Lodge will be open next year and that will drain off some of their business. King Copper is going to be open this year: they put up the panels on the front side a couple of weeks ago. 


Snowmobile season starts Saturday, and I am quite sure anybody who wants to ride will have lots of snow to ride on. 


When I drove up our road yesterday I was struck again by how beautiful it is. I must take the camera and show you what I see. It is a lovely road at any season of the year, but with the snow on all the evergreens, it is so lovely.


And that reminds me of the last time I spent any amount of time in Detroit. I spent all of December in Detroit in 2005 and came home two days after Christmas. That was the night it snowed all the way from Hancock to Copper Harbor, a guy with a snowmobile trailer pulled over and let me pass and I nearly ran into another snowmobile trailer that wasn't quite pulled far enough onto the Mandan Loop Road. Even though it was dark and the trip from Houghton was a bit hairy, when I started down the hill to the culverts, with the snowflakes glittering like diamonds in my headlights, it was the most beautiful thing I think I've ever seen...and I knew even more completely that this is home, and this is where I belong. 


And it is, and I do, and if it gets too cold in here, I will just switch comforters and sleep in my fleece robe and socks. You can always put on more clothes. And much as I hate to admit it, rustling around and doing something is a very good way to stay warm.


November 28

I was a little earlier getting to bed last night - about 1:30 - but I didn't sleep all that well, so I got up around 9:30 this morning. That means it will be an earlier night tonight, which is a good thing. 


It was a quiet weather night, and at one point I could see the moon shining hazily through the clouds. Sometime between when I was up at 6:30 and 9:30 it started snowing heavily, and there was a gusty wind from the south-southwest that was making the snow swirl in all directions.


I knitted for a while. I am working on the mate to the rainbow sock I made a while ago (which had been in the works for several years!). I decided if I had one done, I might as well do the other, so I can wear them. 


I did a row or two more on the scarf and decided the #5 needles were entirely too big, so I tore the whole thing out. I did hunt up a pair of #3s that will be long enough, but they may be too small, so I may try it on #4s, too. Some people think lace should be very thin and have huge holes. I don't. What I was knitting was very sloppy and loose, and some stitches that shouldn't have been big were getting that way, and I didn't think I would be at all happy with the results. The book does recommend making lots of swatches, which I would rather not do, since I'm following one of their patterns, and no matter what I do it will come out smaller than the sample.


Sometimes I think the people who write those books are being paid off by the yarn companies, because if I did what they suggested, I would probably need four or five more balls of yarn than the garment takes. It's like the books that have been put out about knitting socks on one or two circular needles: the ones on 2 circulars have you buying 2-24" needles in every size you knit socks on, and the ones on one circular have you buying a 32" circular with a very supple cable in every size you knit socks on. Now you tell me these people are not being paid off by the manufacturers? I don't have even one 24" circular in any size (the dime store and Wal-Mart never carry anything but 29"), and the only 32" circulars with supple cables I know about are imported from Europe, run about $16 a piece, and only come in metric sizes. If those people aren't being paid off, they should be. And I refuse to bite.


So there. That's the rant of the day. I should post it on one of the knitting blogs.


The weather was, as I said, snowy, until about 3:00, and it has started snowing again. I would say there might be 8" or so down, although as usual it's hard to tell. The southwest winds meant it piled up in all of my driveway, and there  was about a foot drift right up against the garage door. The temperature maxed out at 30º after the wind dropped, and it is now falling again. The wind has now shifted around to the west and is gusty.


The electrician appeared about 2:30 and hauled off my generator on a snowmobile trailer, and he assured me it will be back next week and it will work. With my luck, that means the end of the power failures, but that's all right. He is going to wire it to come on automatically when the power goes, so I won't have to worry about it. When it is working, it self-tests every week, and it will be nice to hear it fire up even if I never need to use it for real. 


I got to the post office and came back with another 6" pile of catalogs and some more sock yarn, as well as my two replacement china plates. 


Driving was interesting. As I mentioned, there is a lot of snow in my driveway. Mac had scraped off some of the snow in Woodland Road, and it was pretty good. US-41 was dicey. Ron says they plowed before 6:45 this morning, but I would say we got 6"-8" of snow after that, and when I went out at 2:30 it was interesting. We had a nominal three-track for most of the way to town, with some tire tracks where people went someplace else. Those sticks the county puts on the side of the road for the plows are handy for the rest of us, too.


That left me wondering if maybe the county thinks there is only one family living full-time out beyond the fort, so they don't have to worry about plowing very much. If so, we need to disabuse them.


I guess my cynical side is showing today, isn't it? Credit it to not enough sleep. So I will toddle off to the north end and try to get to bed at a semi-reasonable time tonight. The wind is blowing again, and the snow is coming down, so it should be a good night to sleep. Maybe I will.


November 27

Well, I did it again, and I will probably do it tonight, too, since it's nearly 9:30 and I haven't eaten yet, and besides I have started knitting a scarf, from a book I got a while ago. I don't know how lace will look in a tweedy yarn, but it should be fun to knit.


Anyway, it was snowing when I finally went to bed, and the lake was roaring, although there wasn't much wind. That usually means something is coming, and boy, did it!


I woke up for the first time at 6:45, and there was no power. Rats! Again! So I put in my trouble call and did my thing in the bathroom, then I padded down to the office and flipped the switch on the computer. Once I was back in bed, I went right back to sleep, but not before I noticed that the wind seemed awfully strong, and it was snowing heavily. Very good sleeping weather.


I woke up again around 9:30, and the power was back on, so I set both clocks and decided I hadn't had enough sleep on a snowy morning, so off I went again, and I finally got up around 11:30...and the power had bounced again. The clock in the bathroom has a battery backup, but the one in the bedroom doesn't, so I can tell for sure that there has been a power failure. It was still snowing, but while I was in the bathroom, it stopped, the sun came out, then a few minutes later, it was snowing again. Love those lake effect squalls!


It turns out that right about the time I got up the first time, we had a real weather event. The wind picked up rather suddenly to a sustained 56 mph, and the NWS station recorded one gust of 71 mph...second only to the Stannard Rock station, which has notoriously high winds. They peaked at 74 mph. So I was right - it was extraordinarily windy right about the time I was going back to sleep.


The wind finally died down below gale force around noon, but it has snowed for most of the day. I can't say how much accumulation there has been, because it was so windy, and I didn't go out. It has been cold, too: the temperature had dropped to about 17º when the NWS station started reporting again, and it has been about that all day. I must say, it has been pretty cozy in here, thank goodness.


I didn't feel the full force of the wind, because it was from the east-northeast when it was at its strongest, and the temperature apparently didn't really start to drop until it switched around to the north. I can imagine things were pretty hairy out at Ron's house, because he faces in that direction. I do know the lake was complaining loudly, and I could hear the gusts banging against the second story.


Somebody on the PastyCam page mentioned that there were several ships out in the lake between Duluth and Copper Harbor, and I wonder how they fared, too. Boy, I wouldn't have wanted to be out there overnight!


The other casualty of the storm was the Mountain Lodge power, which was down for a good part of the day. I finally rebooted the computer around 3:00, so we did get a few pictures, and then I had to do my daily surfing, of course.


In the meantime, I fiddled around on the computer and started the scarf, which is lace. I haven't knitted any lace for a long time, and it has been even longer since I knitted with wool yarn. Most of my lace has been done with size 30 crochet cotton and very small needles. I did do one shawl a very long time ago, in about my favorite lace pattern, but that was about it. So this will be an adventure. Like I said, I'm not sure how it will look in a red and black tweed yarn, but it should be warm and it will be fun to do.


Lace is something I need to give my full attention to. It isn't the kind of project I would take to the ladies' needlework meeting or even to the doctor's waiting room. But I do enjoy doing it, and I love the results. Knitted lace tends to be lacier than crocheted lace, and it is even prettier, in my opinion. It does need to be blocked and well-stretched, and when I make it with cotton yarn, I starch it heavily.


And I watched the snow squalls come and go and the snow swirl around the driveway and the deck. 


I did get the pictures out of the camera, so here is what the dining area looked like on Thanksgiving afternoon.


Winter has started with a bang, I would say, and I certainly hope we're off and running now. At least there is snow in the weather forecast every day for the next week. It would be really nice if Copper Harbor had a good holiday season this year, since it has been at least two since it was any good. Snowmobile season doesn't start until December 1, and it would be nice if we had enough snow for it to get going right away.


So tonight I will probably be late again, since I want to do a few rows on the scarf, but oh, well. I seem to be on my night schedule anyway. I really would have been a good astronomer, if I could have seen anything. At least I am a night owl, for sure.


It's a snowy, stormy night in the field, and I certainly am glad.


November 26

One of the tried and true methods of making sure I sleep is to stay up until all hours of the night. So I did, and I did sleep, but I got up before I really wanted to because my hips hurt. Of course, that was close to 11:00. And that is the trouble with that method: it's self-defeating and it results in very truncated days.


Since I wanted to try the hat I was going to make, it was nearly 1:30 by the time I finally got to the office. Talk about a truncated day...especially since I'm still tired, and I will be back in bed shortly.


Winter has finally come to Copper Harbor. Even though there wasn't enough water to register at the NWS station, it snowed lightly pretty much all day. There was a brisk wind from the north for most of the day, although right now it is calm, and the temperature was around 25º all day. There isn't a lot of snow on the ground, but God willing, we have seen the last of the bare ground until next spring. There is a winter storm warning out for tomorrow, although the accumulations don't sound like very much. It will be windy and cold, and it is going to snow - no waffling this time. The "chance" is 100%.


The hat isn't going to work, in part because the yarn is too thin, and in part because the needle I was trying to use is absolutely the worst I own, an old one that has very blunt points. Mostly it's the yarn. A warm hat needs to be thick, and this isn't. So I have to rethink that and wear my nice black one I made last year. I do need a scarf of some sort, with my hair so short, so I may work on that.


When I got dressed, I wanted to wear the socks I did on #3 needles, and I discovered that the bind-off is so tight I can't get them over my heel...so now I need to decide whether to fiddle around with a sewn bind off or just redo them from the top down. Making socks from the toe up is kind of fun occasionally, but there really is no good way to get that bind off as elastic as it needs to be. It's too bad, because they are nice socks, soft merino wool, and they would be very warm. Well, not everything turns out perfect, I guess.


I am, I confess, getting tired of socks. I would like to knit something else for a change, but I haven't decide what. I have a neat Fair Isle sweater to do, but it needs #3 needles, and I think they are all in the basement, and I don't know where they are.


In looking through my catalogs, I discover that my favorite double pointed needles, which are made in Germany, come in European metric sizes, which means there is no US #2 or #3, so I may be stuck with my old Boye needles, which are 30 to 40 years old and have stiff cables. I didn't used to be interested in knitting on small needles (except for lace on 2mm and smaller), except for socks, so I don't have much of a selection...and neither do the needlecraft stores.


It does seem like this weather is good knitting weather, so I may have to dive into the basement and see what I can find.


There is another project on tap, though. I completed the cross stitch on two Christmas stockings six or seven years ago now, I think, but I have never gotten around to finishing them. Christmas just comes too fast, I guess. In order to finish them, I have to go through and weed out the catalogs to make room at the sewing machine. The pile of catalogs, which was about 3' high, has now avalanched all over this end of the office, so I need to do something with them. I would really like to hang those stockings on my mantel one of these years...

Now I think I will dive into bed and see if I can sleep. A little snow and a singing lake are good for that.


November 25

I knitted again, and got to bed around midnight. At about 3:00 I woke up, and it was 6:00 before I got back to sleep. I do not know what causes that, and I find it extremely annoying. So while I was late getting up, I didn't feel very robust, and I didn't do anything much. So there.


I have been forgetting to mention how light it has been at night lately. The moon was full last night, and all night long it looked like dawn was breaking. For a few minutes around 4:00 the clouds thinned a bit and there it was, all fuzzy looking, shining in the front windows. The difference between full moon and new moon is really dramatic here. At new moon it so dark, I think that makes full moon seem all the brighter. Neat.


The weather was sort of icky. There was a very little sunshine, and the temperature briefly got up to 41º before it fell back, and it is now rising again. Needless to say, a lot of our little snow has turned to slush. There was a west-southwest wind in the 10-20 mph range off and on all day. Not very interesting at all.


The only thing of interest I have to report is the little chickadee I saw behind the breezeway, sitting on a wisp of grass and picking up something I couldn't see. Where he was gleaning couldn't possibly have been seeds, so it must have been some of the gnats that had been flying around the powder room window when it was warmer. That was one of the littlest chickadees I have ever seen, but it was warm enough that it wasn't fluffed up at all.


I felt so blah that I didn't do the tetrazzini today, as I'd planned. I need to make some sense of the kitchen before I do that, and while I did put some things in the sink to soak, I just didn't feel like tearing into pots and pans and the buffet. Maybe tomorrow.


So that is all there is, and Buster and Jasmine both have been telling me it's time to go to bed. So I will, and hope there are no wakeful times tonight.


November 24

I knitted last night, until I got ready to do the toe on one of the strange-colored socks, so it was close to midnight when I got to bed...and the first time I woke up was at 6:00 this morning! Comes from not drinking a lot of water before I go to bed. I went back to sleep, and woke up around 9:00, but I dozed until about 10:00.


It was snowing when I got up, and there were a couple of inches of new stuff on the ground. The snow continued until nearly 1:00, and from the look of the road, I would say about 3" fell. It snowed again between 6:00 and 8:00, and the wind is gusting like it may be snowing again...the notorious lake effect squalls.


It was chilly and windy. The temperature got up to about 33º briefly, but there was a gusty west wind, in the 10-20 mph range, and it wasn't very nice out.


I went to the post office, and that was about all I did. I started to wash pots and pans, but some of them needed more soaking, so I just quit.


I ate my brunch about 2:00 - another turkey dinner - so I wasn't hungry enough to go out for dinner. That is a good turkey, and good gravy. Even Buster thought so. After two days, he finally came around while I was eating and asked for some, so I gave him a small helping, and he ate quite a bit. It was warm and soaked in gravy, and that is no doubt part of the reason it tasted so good to him. He likes gravy.


I finished the strange sock this morning (this one is hunter green, navy blue, brown, pink, orange and yellow, and it has a hunter green stripe and two yellow stripes), but otherwise I vegged, and I will be jumping into bed without a bath tonight. 


Maybe another good night's sleep will get me back together. Not that I felt bad. Most of my aches and pains are gone, but I just didn't feel very robust, and now I am tired again. This weather is good for sleeping.


So I will go do.


November 23

I did knit for a while last night, just to relax a bit. By the time I got to bed, I was so stiff I could hardly move. I drank a lot of water, because I felt dehydrated, so I was up several times in the night, and it was interesting to try to get to the bathroom. When I first laid down, I ached all over, and it was interesting to feel the aches start to go away, starting with my back and ending with two toes on my right foot. And I certainly did sleep. I think I got to bed around 10:30, and I got up when Buster said "meow?" at about 9:30 this morning.


However, I felt tired and achy all day, so I didn't do anything. It is getting better now, but for most of the day, my legs were almost as sore as they were last night.


When I came into the great room, the source of the little crashes I heard last night became evident. The tablecloth was pulled almost off the table, and three teaspoons were on the floor. I certainly was glad they and the basket of turkeys were the only things I left on the table, or there could have been a real disaster. Anyway, somebody was being very bad after I was safely out of the way.


I had my real Thanksgiving dinner for lunch (brunch?), and I am satisfied. The broccoli casserole wasn't so hot, but everything else was good. The stuffing was flavored pretty much the way I wanted it, the turkey and gravy were good, and the squash was extraordinarily sweet and tasty. So I guess I did all right. When I have cooked a big dinner like that, I simply cannot eat very  much of it, or taste much of what I eat, so I have to wait until the next day to really eat and critique the meal. It was good.


When I woke up this morning, it was snowing, but it stopped pretty quick, and so far as I know, there wasn't any more. That one squall left about ½" on the garage roof and a dusting on the ground.


The temperature was in the mid 20s all day, although it has now risen to 28º. The wind was from the west-southwest,  not very strong but gusty at times, and it is now in the 10-20 mph range...or so they say. I am very suspicious of the readings from that direction, since the NWS station is quite sheltered. 


I felt so tired and creaky that I didn't go to dinner tonight, and just had a bowl of soup and some cheese and crackers.


I had to change my jeans once today, which annoyed me, but I think I know what part of the trouble is. Sometimes I ignore the signs because I am busy doing something else, but sometimes I ignore them because it is just too hard to get up. Not a good excuse, maybe, but I think that's what is happening. I keep hoping I will remember that...


So that is about all I know. I do hope I feel a little more robust tomorrow, because there are pots and pans in the sink and a dishwasher full of stuff to put away. I am going to have to rearrange one of the buffet cabinets. I put the lower shelf entirely too low, and it is a real problem to get the plates, and particularly the saucers, out. So I need to raise the shelf a notch and hope that doesn't make the middle space too narrow. Sometimes you just have to try these things and see how they work.


For the past two nights, I have chickened out and copied the journal by hand, and I think I will do that again tonight.  I just don't feel like hassling this program tonight. I took a picture of the table yesterday afternoon, and when I get around to getting it out of the camera, then I will let FrontPage do its thing.


Then I think I will go and knit a bit and try to sleep a lot. It sounds like a good winter's night to do that.


November 22 Thanksgiving Day

Well, I guess that turned out all right.


I got to bed late, as usual, and I made the mistake of going back to sleep when I woke up at 8:15...so it was 10:45 before I woke up again! Yie! That was after a very weird dream that included my neighbors on Champine. Maybe they were thinking about me.


Anyway, that meant I had to run around. I couldn't even give Buster much of his usual morning petting. I had my OJ and by 11:45 the turkey was in the oven. The interesting thing about that is, it was done exactly when the package said it would be, so it came out of the oven at 4:00.


On the bright side, eating after I did the turkey meant I got to have sautéed giblets for brunch, which I love. I always eat the liver in honor of DC, whose favorite food it was. 


While the turkey cooked, I swept floors, cleaned the kitchen, sort of, dusted, sort of, and did all the other stuff I needed to do. Ron called and said that another of our neighbors, a couple, were going to eat alone, and would it be OK to invite them, so I said sure, since there would be enough food for an army, and Trevor decided not to come, probably because there would be too many adults and he would be bored, which I suppose was true. He missed a pretty good dinner.


My problems were my legs and feet, of course. I kept having to sit down for a few minutes, and that meant it took longer to do what I needed to do. My feet are still really, really sore.


But dinner came out just fine, and it all came together at once, like it's supposed to. The broccoli casserole was good, except that it did need a little salt. The turkey was pretty good, although I didn't eat much of it. I find after I've been cooking all day long, I have a hard time eating much of my dinner. I'm not sure about the stuffing. It didn't taste like anything to me, but I will try it again tomorrow. I didn't forget the cranberries. My guests brought dessert, and that was just great. 


So I guess it turned out OK.


Buster was the star of the show. Ron came a little early in case I needed help, which I didn't by that time, so we sat for a while and Buster came and got petted and wanted to walk on the table, and again when we were all at the table, he kept walking around getting petted, and he sat on my lap for a long time. I hadn't had time to give him his usual loving today.


And wonder of wonders, everything fit into the fridge. I don't know how I did it.


The weather wasn't bad at all. There wasn't any snow, and the temperature was absolutely flat at 27º. There was some wind this morning, but it died down by afternoon, and there were a few rays of sunshine off and on. It was too cold out to be out in a short-sleeve shirt (which I had on to cook in), but it wasn't bad at all.


The nice lady who was my guest helped me clean up my kitchen, so all I have to do is run the dishwasher and do the pots and pans tomorrow, which is wonderful. It's nice to know people like that. Ron would do it, too, but he is more hesitant about working in somebody else's kitchen.


I hope everyone had a nice day with the people you want to be with. Now I can go and collapse. I do need to bathe, since I sweated copiously for most of the day, but I don't think I will be out of bed for long. See, I still can do it when I want to. It's nice to know that. For a while I was wondering.


November 21

I had to reboot twice to get the journal to upload last night, but everything looked fine when I left. Unfortunately, the computer hung up overnight and we didn't get any pictures until I kicked it this morning, around 11:45. Not that there was much to see before or afterward.


I knitted too long. I am knitting another of the strange socks, and after I did the heel, I wanted to see where the pattern would go next. So it was sometime around 1:00 when I got to bed, and I didn't sleep all that well


At one point, I woke up with the back of my left hand asleep...somehow I had managed to get in a position where I was pinching that nerve. As sometimes happens, after I got the tingling out of it, it hurt, so it was a while before I got back to sleep.


I woke up around 8:30, but I just couldn't get up, so I didn't roll out of bed until about 10:30. I only knitted for a little over half an hour, but that still meant it was late when I got to the office...to find the computer hung. I wonder what is happening to this one? I can see myself having to get a new computer sooner than I had planned...


I diddled around, like I usually do, but I hadn't planned too much for today, and I usually get a late start anyway. The only thing that didn't get done was the table, although I did get it cleaned off. I had to find the irons, and I still have to press the tablecloth.


I did get the squash cooked and the broccoli casserole put together, although that is iffy. It was supposed to use frozen broccoli, and I am using fresh, so the proportions are different. And no way am I ever going to put 2 teaspoons of salt in a dish that fits adequately in a 9x9" pan! I think I probably should have put it in a casserole, and I may do that before I bake it tomorrow. I do hate to try new (to me) dishes on company, but I wouldn't bother to make such a thing for myself. It is a recipe my mother actually typed out, but it doesn't have any annotations on it, and she always noted down when she made a recipe, and whether she liked it, so this one is a mystery. At least it isn't plain, steamed broccoli.


While I was doing that, I did wash the towels, and they are in the dryer.


The trouble with cooking is all the standing. I have been toying with the idea of getting a sort of stool that I could sort of lean on...it is a three-legged thing with wheels and a saddle. I hate to give in to being disabled, but the fact of the matter is, I am, and very likely my back isn't ever going to get any better. I do like to cook, and one of the reasons I don't do as much as I used to is, frankly, all the standing. So I am thinking about it.


I do now have my Tylenol 3, but I don't like to take that in less than an emergency, and I would be more likely to take it at night anyway. Besides, they say it doesn't mix with boos very well.


Anyway, as I finished using bowls and pots and things, I washed them up (amazing, isn't it?) so all I have to do now is run the dishwasher, and that more because I have run out of cat dishes. Tomorrow, there will be a lot of things to put away, but that doesn't take long, and I can sit down to put things in the lower cabinets.


So I will try to get this done in a hurry and jump into bed, because I do have to get up at a reasonable hour tomorrow. The very latest I can get the turkey in the oven is noon (I am planning dinner at 4:30) and it really should be in by 11:00, so I have some doing to do. Once that is done, I can do the table, and eventually, peel potatoes and get them ready to cook, start putting the salad together, and make the salad dressing.


I am trying to be organized about this thing this year. I would like to have everything done and on hold when Ron and Trevor get here. And I guess it's not the cooking, it's the coordination to get everything to come out at the right time.


When my family was alive, I had Christmas dinner several times, for 8 or 10, and any number of meals for the 3 of us, but then I was more in practice, and besides, for the big meals, I had my mother to help me. There isn't anything like having a sidekick who has been putting on big meals for 40 years...and I think she learned it from her mother, at least by observation. But of course, my mother has been gone 14 years now, and my dad died 24 years ago, so it has been a long time since I've cooked for anybody but myself.


The other thing is, last year, I was really feeling horrible. I think at that time I had some kind of virus, and I really didn't feel like doing anything. At least this year, I don't have that problem. I only have to remember that everything takes longer than it used to, and I have to sit down frequently, and I have to factor that into my plan.


Oh, yes, and I did go to the post office and get a bunch of stuff, including some catalogs I have already given away. The bamboo yarn came, so now I can look forward to the pleasure of going through all my books of knitting patterns to find the lace pattern I want to make the socks from. I was gone for about half an hour, because I stopped at the store, and I forgot about my turkeys. When I looked, there they were between the doors, so I now have my dark chocolate turkeys...yum!


Even Lake Champlain's milk chocolate is delicious (I ate the turkey that was broken), but I still like dark chocolate better. 


The weather was better off ignored. I noticed when I went to bed last night that the lake was singing, even though I couldn't hear much, if any, wind, and it has been singing in the background all day long. The wind has been from the northeast, in the 20-35 mph range, and the temperature was around 30º all day, although it has now gone down to 28º. I didn't see any snow, but there were little snowballs on the deck, and one car that was parked at the post office had snow all over it - I don't know where she lives. It is definitely too cold to rain. It was so dark and dreary I had the kitchen lights on almost all day.


That's one reason we are eating at 4:30. I hope we will have the most important stuff over with before it gets too dark, since it is really dark in the great room.


So that was my day, and I guess I accomplished most of what I wanted to, and I am tired. I really didn't get enough sleep last night. I'm hoping I can keep from rehearsing tomorrow and sleep hard and fast tonight, with the song of Mother Superior in my ears.


November 20

Last night, the reboot and upload went like there had never been a problem. If I could explain computers, I would probably win a Nobel Prize.


That was nice, but I was very late getting to bed anyway. I knitted for a while, and I think I sat and stared at the floor for quite a while, too, and it was closer to 2:00 than 1:00 when I turned out the light (or at least I think that was the time).


Nonetheless, I was up around 9:00 this morning, and I left for town before noon. There was a stop at the post office, although I didn't go in, then it was off down the covered road.


Apparently there have been some slick roads over the past few days, because there was a nice layer of stamp sand all over the covered road. I didn't meet a car in either direction until Delaware, when I came up behind the empty cement truck that had been to the house that's being built out by Ron. I passed him, and didn't see more than a couple of other vehicles until I got to Cliff Drive, where I lapped the guy I had come up behind.


It was a dark, dull day that looked like it might rain, and it did up in the higher parts of Cliff Drive, and some of that rain was a little sleety, but as soon as I got back down to US-41, it quit.


I had to stop at Wal-Mart, and I was going to do a little shopping, but when I got out of the car after sitting for an hour, my left knee was so sore I could hardly walk on it, so I aborted that, and probably saved myself some money. Then it was off to Econo Foods, where I got my nice turkey, all the things on my list, and a whole beef tenderloin for the freezer. I had one of those last year, and it was excellent, although this year I will thaw it and remove the piece of tendon along the bottom, and probably cut off the tail and broil it later. I didn't want to do that before I froze it because it is sealed in a plastic bag and it will freeze better that way.


So now I am set for Christmas or New Year's if by chance we have a blizzard and I can't get down to town for a standing rib roast. I was the turkey maven and my mother was the rib roast expert, although using the probe and, I think the convection roast last year, I didn't do badly. I haven't used the convection oven enough to really feel comfortable with it, but I have made some pretty good meals with it. This year I will try hard not to try to cut my finger off...but that came later, didn't it?


There were a lot of cars in Econo's parking lot, but I didn't see a lot of people inside, and there wasn't any wait to check out. I sometimes wonder if all those cars aren't the employees' cars, to make it look like it's busy, but that's my cynical side showing again.


Of course, I stopped for gas. There are two things I always get when I go to town: JD and gas. Fuel for me and fuel for the chariot. This time, I think it was probably a good idea. The low price for gas was $3.22, which, if I heard right yesterday, is on the low side of the average for the country. In that case, it probably won't last long, so I filled up the tank (it wasn't very empty).


After I got to Calumet, there was even less traffic going north than there had been going south. I passed one exceedingly law-abiding citizen going down the hill to Allouez, and that was all the traffic in my direction. 


There was a little snow just south of Calumet, and some rain on Cliff drive, but only about a minute's worth in each case, enough to wet the windshield and make a mess of the back window. So it was trying to do something, but it didn't make it. Up in the higher elevations, there was a very little crust of snow left on the ground beside the road, but most of it was gone.


The temperature here was 40º all day, until just a little while ago, but as I went south, it got cooler, and it was about 35º at Houghton. There wasn't any wind to speak of, so it wasn't a bad day to be out, except that it was so damp it did a number on my arthritis. I guess it has been raining lightly since it got dark, but I wouldn't have known without looking at the weather report.


I got home shortly after 3:00, although I sat a while before I unloaded the car. The guy who packed my order is nice enough, but I don't think he is too smart. At least he doesn't have a very good idea of what "cold" means, so my deli stuff got left in paper bags and didn't get put in a cooler. I was glad I didn't let it sit there any longer. 


The fridge is now bulging, and I am going to have to do some rearranging or I won't have a prayer of getting everything into it. It is cooling off, but it isn't really cold enough to leave stuff out in the breezeway yet (good thing, because the big plants are still out there!), so I am definitely going to have a logistical problem. When I got that fridge and thought it would be big enough, I didn't count on the huge drawers at the bottom, or on the number of miscellaneous jars and bottles that tend to clutter up a fridge. The only other choices, though, were either a 42" wide, which would have totally screwed up the cabinet plan for the kitchen, or one that was 28" or 30" deep, which would have looked horrible, and would have presented me with the same problem the one on Champine had: it would be impossible to get into the back of it. I keep hoping that someday things like refrigerators will be designed by women who have to contend with the actual running of a kitchen, but so far I've been disappointed. Even if only they were completely modular, so you could pick and choose every piece that went into them, it would be better. 


I have these three big drawers that take up over 2' in the bottom. The two top ones (including the biggest one) are supposed to be for vegetables, and the bottom one, which is truncated on the back, is supposed to be for meat. Well, in general, the bottom two are full of cheese, and while I do keep some veggies in the top one, there are still some unplanted perennial roots in the top one. I guess I can get rid of those. I would take the cheese in jars out of the bottom two, but I don't have any other place in the fridge for it. I guess maybe it's cold enough in the breezeway for that, and I may just have to put it there anyway and hope for the best.


I would very much like to have removed the middle drawer and spaced the shelves further apart, but oh, no, the drawers are a single module, and you can't get rid of any of them. Stupid.


Well, that's my rant for the day.


Last evening, I called the place I got my chocolate turkeys from. They screwed up my order and sent milk instead of dark chocolate, and then one of the milk chocolate turkeys was broken. Trevor likes milk chocolate, but Ron and I much prefer dark, and besides the order was wrong. Today they called back and were most apologetic, and will try to get my dark chocolate turkeys to me by tomorrow. That will be interesting. And no, I don't have to send the others back.


This place is Lake Champlain Chocolates, and they have the best chocolate I have ever eaten, bar none, including Godiva. Their truffles are to die for, but all their chocolate is just incredibly good. Expensive, but worth it. And clearly their customer service is pretty good, too. I'm sure that they do a good business through their internet site, and they are very busy at this time of year, so the mistake is understandable, if not excusable. I've never had a problem with them before, and if you say you want something on a given day, you get it. I selectively send small quantities of their chocolates to special people, like Debbie, as well as to myself. And they have these neat Thanksgiving turkeys, little ones for place settings, and a big one as a centerpiece. The centerpiece turkey lasted me until sometime last spring, when I found a piece of it that had gotten buried, and it satisfied my chocolate craving for the spring.


That's about all I have to talk about. Tomorrow I have a number of things to do, including getting the table ready, cook the squash and prepare the broccoli casserole. And move enough stuff around in the fridge to get them into it. And clean up the kitchen...and...and...you know, I find I really get out of the habit of doing anything pretty easily. But I can't postpone all of those things until Thursday, or we'll never eat.


So I think I will try again to get to bed a bit earlier tonight so maybe I can get an early start tomorrow?


It's a quiet, damp night in the field, and it's time to sleep.


November 19

Well, my hope that all would be well with the computer didn't come true. It almost refused to boot, several times, and finally it completely lost the monitor driver. So I had to do a GoBack, which I hate. That did solve the monitor problem, but then I had to recover the files that had changed since the checkpoint. It took me about six tries to get the journal that I had just finished typing. I don't know quite why, but finally I got it back. And when I tried to use FrontPage to upload it, it got that unknown error which I think means it wrote over part of the operating system. So I gave up and copied it manually. I am holding my breath about tonight, since I haven't rebooted all day.


So I needed my knitting time to relax, and while I was knitting Buster curled up and went to sleep on the bath rug, so soundly that for a moment I thought he was dead. I had to poke him to get him to wake up. In the meantime, Jasmine came in, and she tried to bite his neck, which didn't wake him up. Then they both settled down, and I finally figured out that the one purring isn't Buster, it's Jasmine. She purrs when she and Buster are close together.  I wish she would purr for me, but that's a future. She likes Buster a whole lot more than he likes her, I think...or maybe it's that he's trying to make me think that.


I got right at the boxes this morning and looked through all of them without finding my linens. I did move them all toward the door, and I moved the full boxes more out of the way.


When I went to open the front door, I found my linens on the table in the vestibule...and then I remembered what happened. I had them in my hands to take them to the laundry room when the UPS guy (not our regular driver) tapped on the door, and there were two packages. So I set the linens down and brought in the packages, and totally - I do mean totally - forgot my linens. Oh, my mind, my mind!


Ron came and got all the boxes into the garage, then we moved furniture around and now I have an almost habitable great room. There are still too many boxes in it, but at least you can move around, sit at the table, or sit in the seating area, and you can see which is which.


The boxes will just have to stay a while. Some of them have things from the curio cabinet that will be unpacked when I have time, but there is too much stuff to go in there, so I will have to unpack it all, sort it out, and repack what I don't want to display. Now it would be nice to have a bigger curio, but then I don't know what I would do with the one I have. Besides, I customized it some years ago by adding shelves, so it is really useful for my small boxes.


The rest of the boxes either have been packed to go down to the basement, or they have kitchen stuff or silver in them that I don't know what to do with. Now I think I will clean the silver and pack it away, since the chances I will want to use it are small. Most of the kitchen stuff will go downstairs, too, but it needs to be neatly packed and labeled so that I know what is in the boxes if I need some of those things. One of these days I will have to call in the young legs to move things around.


We had a nice talk before Ron went off to get Trevor, and Buster, bless his little heart, came out and even got on Ron's lap for a few moments, like he was glad to see him. Of course, he got to know Ron when I was away last spring, and he is usually nice to people he knows. Jasmine, of course, was nowhere to be seen.


I still have a few things to dispose of somehow before everything will be ready for dinner, but I think I can do that without much difficulty.


The weather wasn't worth mentioning. It was warm and drizzly all day long, although we didn't get much rain. The temperature got up to 43º at 8:00 tonight, and sometimes it was breezy and sometimes it was calm. It was so cloudy that it was dark and dreary all day, and night fell even earlier than usual. A good day to turn inward, I think.


So that was all there is, and tomorrow I have to go to town to get my turkey and some other things. Now I will try the upload thing again and go knit a while. It's dark and quiet in the field tonight.


November 18

I knitted again, and jumped into bed without a bath, since I had no plans to be seen today. And I did sleep good, although I ended up almost on my back. My right hip got sore, because I didn't have enough of the body pillow under my knee. I didn't find that out until 9:00, and then it was time to get up.


The kitties, especially the little one, love it when I get up at that hour. Jasmine was Jazz-mine, running around and playing with nothing, although when I gave her a twist'em, she wanted to eat it, for some reason.  She has some weird eating habits, including dead flies. Yuck! I sure hope she didn't eat the twist'em, but she took it away someplace I can't see.


It started out very cloudy and calm (not what they were predicting), but around 10:45 it began to clear up and get breezy. It was beautifully sunny for a while, but about 2:30 it began to cloud up again, and by 4:30 it was really dark. The temperature started out at 32º and got up to 39º, where it still is. So much for the predictions of temps in the middle 20s overnight. They just don't give that big heat sink I live beside enough credit for keeping temperatures up.


I did a few things today, but not much. I got most of the odds and ends packed up, but there is one huge glass plate that I just don't know what to do with. It is about 14" in diameter, and shaped like a daisy, but the edges are turned up, so it doesn't catch in the grooves on the shelves in the glass cabinet. I'm not going to put something that big and heavy behind all that cut glass without it securely lodged in the plate groove. So I'm a bit stumped. It's even too big to pack in anything but a medium box, so I guess the best I can do is try to get it onto a high shelf in the kitchen, at least for the time being.


I also put away all the linens in the buffet. However, I have a mystery. I had put the table cloth and silent cloth I want to use on Thursday in a pile with the dirty fingertip towels, so that I could take them into the laundry room. I know where I originally had them stacked, and I remember moving them in order to throw away the cardboard from the shelves. And now I can't find them. I have gone through four boxes of paper, to see if they somehow dropped into a box, and I just can't find them.


I hate it when I do things like that. Tomorrow I will have to spend time going through all the boxes, and moving the paper from one to another, and hope I can find them. They definitely aren't in the laundry, and I just don't see them anyplace else. Arrggh!!


So I guess I accomplished a little. The buffet is almost cleared off, and there isn't much on the table - another small box to pack away before I lose all my packing material.


It won't be completely beautiful in here, but it will be better. I think we can get all the chairs into the great room and get the living area furniture arranged properly, which will give me a working great room again. Then I can begin to go through the boxes of stuff from the curio. I have two or three (I thought it was three, but I've only seen references to two) small glass curios that go on tables, and if I can get the living area furniture arranged, maybe I can figure out where to put them. Some of the smaller boxes go in them perfectly, and they are kind of neat.


If I can find the two pyramidal ones, they would go on the buffet, except that Pottery Barn has a lamp shaped like a multi-pointed star that I would really like to have two of for the buffet. I have been putting off ordering them and another lamp, which I need, until I get the living area arranged and see what I need. They have a cool floor lamp that has curio shelves, but I'm not sure if it will go in a place where you could actually see the contents of the shelves, so I may need a table lamp.


I also need to clean the marble-top table.  It is a cool antique, a cut-down kitchen table with a nice pale gray marble top. But somehow, a tin box got left on it and left a rusty ring on the table. So I need to get at it with cleaners and marble polish, and then I need to find a lamp.


So there is still plenty to do. It will feel so good to get the big boxes and empty boxes out of the area, and move the crates of pictures someplace else, so that I have a living and dining area, instead of a storage room! And maybe, just maybe, we can move the sofa enough to get the extension cord plugged in again and the lamps on the end tables working! It has been a real pain not to have any light in the great room.


That is one thing I goofed on. I should have put the same sconces I have in the stairway to the loft between each of the windows on both sides of the great room. Then there would have been enough light in there. The real problem is the eating area, which is centered between two ceiling beams. So the only way to get a light over the table would be to hang it from the roof, which is 2½ stories up...not very feasible. Besides, I really don't like hanging lamps over dining tables. You never get them in the right place, and it limits where you can put your table. So unless I can get a fixture that just hangs in midair (shades of Harry Potter), it is always going to be pretty dark at the dining table after the sun sets. Thus the lamps on the buffet. That should help. 


So that is about all I can think of to write about, and I hope I have better luck uploading this tonight. Last night, I had a terrible time getting the computer to reboot, and I really can't imagine why. It would get to the point after the "Windows" screen and before my wallpaper came up and just hang. Finally I got into Safe Mode, which I hate to do because it rearranges all the shortcuts on my screen, and did a disk scan, and it seemed a little better after that. When it came up and I uploaded the journal, I immediately backed up everything to the Travel Disk. It's been a month or so since I did that, so it was time anyway, but if I am going to begin to have computer problems again, I want to make sure I have copies of all my files. Let's hope it's better tonight!


Now it's a cool, breezy night in the field, and I'm tired.


November 17

I knitted for a while and got to bed around 1:00, but I slept well enough to get up at about 9:00 this morning. The lake started singing during the night, and that was nice, too.


About 3:00 am, I went into the bathroom, and Buster was sleeping on his rug, like he frequently does in the wintertime. I sat down in the dark, as always, and Jasmine came in and sat down between Buster and the wall. I was petting Buster, so I reached over and petted Jasmine, and amazingly enough, she sat there and let me give her four or five strokes. I should have kept on, but I stopped, and when I reached out again, she moved out of reach. So she actually got petted, and she seemed to think that was OK. Now the problem will be to get my hand on her without her seeing it coming...Slowly, slowly, we make progress.


I didn't do a lot today, but I did get all the china barrels unpacked. There was one I thought was still full that was empty, and that was certainly nice. The ones I unpacked were full of small boxes which are full of small boxes...I didn't realize how much was in the curio, or how much there was on the mantel on Champine. Of course, there is a lot of packing material in those boxes. I'm not sure how much besides the Harmony Kingdom stuff I will be putting in the curio, although there are some cloisonné boxes and a few others that I really love. And my small snow globe collection.


I did wash all the stuff I unpacked yesterday, and it looks much prettier clean. I don't know how some of those things got so dirty! 


I spent a long time with Brasso and paper towels shining up a pair of brass candleholders. I didn't get all the black spots off them, but they are nice and shiny now. The curious thing was that every time I put some more Brasso on them, I rubbed more black stuff off, so I don't know what I would have to do to get them really clean.


All that reminds me of the time, way back in the late '80s, when I decided I couldn't stand the way the brass fireplace screen looked. This was in my little house on Hillcrest, and the screen came with the house and had never been shined, that I knew of. What a chore! I think I worked on the frame of that fire screen for a whole weekend before I got it clean and shiny. It did look nice, though, even though it was the wrong size for the fireplace opening, and somebody (not me) had put a piece of black tape on the marble behind it so that it would look right. The things people do...


My hands aren't quite as sore as they were when I did the fire screen, but they were getting that way before I decided the candle holders were as shiny as necessary.


Then I took out all the platters that were in the bottom of the glass cabinet and replaced them with the teapots and other interesting china things, which nearly cleared the table, except for the odds and ends I, as usual, don't know what to do with.


There is one Dansk candle holder and the skinny tapers that go in it, and I have no clue where the other one is. Down in the basement, I hope. Those are really '60s things, but I like them. I won't ever burn the tapers, because I doubt I could ever get more like them.


Tomorrow I will try to get the linens stored away and pack up the things I really don't want upstairs...there's a lot of stuff like that lying on the buffet and the table right now.


The two decanters in their frame that locks will go on the cellaret, of course, so the new bowl will go on the buffet. I have left the decanters in the kitchen, so that their insides dry. The metal frame isn't in very good shape, but maybe no one will notice that.


I am getting a little concerned about a couple of very nice boxes I had on the coffee table on Champine, which I haven't run across yet. I am hoping they are in one of the smaller packed boxes, because if they aren't, there is another box I need to locate in the basement. They are boxes my mother brought me from their Japan trip. One is cinnabar, and the other has either abalone or paua shell squares all over it. I love both of them, and I want them where I can see them.


Anyway, by the time I fiddled around with the glass cabinet and set aside the boxes of HK, it was getting dark, so I quit for the day. There are two platters I would like to get into the glass cabinet, but I'm not sure they will go. We'll see about that tomorrow. I really should have put those things in before I filled the shelves, but that's not how I unpacked things.


It was another good day to do what I did. It was very cloudy and windy, although the wind was from the northeast, so it wasn't bad around here. The temperature was right about 32º all day long, and all those billowy clouds the camera took pictures of were full of little snow showers. There is a frosting on the ground, and I do mean frosting, and on the roads. US-41 looked pretty slippery when I went to dinner, and my feet crunched a bit when I walked into the restaurant. It was raw and nasty.


There is a meteor shower tonight - the Leonids - that is supposed to peak around 1:30 am, but there is almost no chance it will be clear enough to see them, even if Leo was above the trees in the east. One of these days, I will see a meteor, or a comet, or maybe even Mercury, but not tonight.


So that is another day, and while it still looks like a disaster around here, I think things are shaping up. If I can get something done tomorrow, at least we'll be able to have a place to eat on Thursday.


I think I will go and knit a bit more so my hands don't cramp up completely.


November 16

I decided not to fight my body, so it was midnight before I got to bed, and except for about an hour between 3:00 and 4:00, I slept very well and got up around 9:00. I really didn't want to get up, but I had to walk, so oh, well.


When I got up at 3:00 and looked out the windows, there were stars, so I actually got my glasses on and looked  for real. I could see Cassiopeia, Cepheus and the Little Dipper, and I could just about see some Milky Way through Cassiopeia, but Perseus was nearly overhead, so unless my eyes were out on stalks or I went outside (no thanks - it was about 33º outside then!), I wasn't going to see the comet. Oh, well. It's still visible. Maybe one day I'll see it.


Jasmine and Buster were very happy, both that I was awake during their evening romping time and their morning romping time. While I was sitting in the closet getting dressed, Jasmine kept bombing up and down the hallway all hunched up with her tail kinked up behind her. The barometer was high this morning. I think everyone who has a cat should have a long hallway to serve as a racecourse so the kitties get their exercise.


One of the tasks of the day was the trash. I decided not to push it too much, so I collected what I had - three large and three small bags - and schlepped it off to the compactor. Of course, I forgot something. How I can walk through the kitchen and not see the veggie tray container is beyond my understanding, but I did. I did manage to get some pretty yucky stuff out of the fridge, which was good.


When I got back from the post office, and a short stop at the general store, I packed away all the silver for future work, then I unpacked the first of last year's barrels. Unfortunately, one of my German crystal old fashioned glasses got some chips in the rim...an inexperienced packer didn't pad the rim enough...but everything else was OK. I discovered that inadvertently I have acquired a small collection of antique teapots. I now have at least five. There was also a teacup with a gold interior, and its saucer with a gold bottom, and a Limoges hand painted sugar and creamer. I don't recall ever seeing any of those things before, so where they came from is a mystery. They are all very pretty, but very dirty, so they were out someplace.


I also unearthed the last piece of cut glass, a small compote that I used to put on my table, and the round mirror that my grandmother set one of the cut glass bowls on. All that stuff is incredibly dirty, so I have to conclude that any housecleaners I had in that house strictly avoided the knick-knacks. Finding a place in the cabinet for the compote will be hard, but I think maybe I can. Stashing away the teapots will mean moving the platters on the bottom shelf, and what I will do with those, I just don't know. The first order of business is to wash everything. The table is now full again. 


I think the other three barrels mostly have smaller boxes with stuff from the curio in them, or at least I hope so.


I was moving things to the table when I looked up and saw the most beautiful sun dog I have ever seen, a very wide rainbow, with its reflection on the harbor. Unfortunately, the batteries in the camera had died, and the ones I replaced them with were dead too (so you can't just charge up those rechargeable batteries and expect them to work six months later, I guess), and by the time I got outside, the big rainbow was gone. There was, however, a wonderful sun pillar, and little sun dogs that you can see if you look for their reflections in the water. I took a dozen pictures, but I pared it down to four representative ones.


As you can see, it was just about calm, and it was like that all day. The temperature got up to 36º, but it was dropping when I went outside, and there was no wind to speak of. It was partly cloudy all day, with several layers of clouds, as you can see from the pictures. I love skies like that: they are so interesting to watch! I'm really sorry I missed the rainbow, but that's the way things go. There are batteries in the camera now, and the rechargeable ones are recharging. At one point I looked out the south windows, and this end of the harbor was like a mirror, with just a little patch of fog right on the water. The lake is still a lot warmer than the air was - in the low 40s.


So that was my day. I accomplished something, and I saw something nice. I ended it all with a hamburger and an Irish coffee at Mariner. Yum. And the little moon was riding high behind the clouds when I came home.


Now I am getting tired again, so I will get this thing published and to up to the north end and knit a while. It's a cool, calm night in the field tonight.


November 15

Boy, did that ever not work! I was in bed by 10:30 last night...and I didn't really sleep until about 6:00 this morning. I was thinking (which is always a bad thing) and I just could not find a comfortable place to lie, and besides that, I had to walk (really, really had to) about six times. I think I will try it again tonight. I think I might do better.


The lake was roaring all night, but it wasn't the deep bass roar like the last gale. This one was higher pitched, and at least once I heard the loud bang! of a rogue wave hitting the rocks. The wind was from the north, but I could hear it hitting the upstairs, so it was a pretty wild night. And sometime early this morning (6:00 or so?) I saw a star peeking through the clouds when I got into bed.


As a result of my night, I didn't get up until nearly noon. Not surprising. When I got into the bathroom, there was a stain on the rug I put down for Buster to sleep on - somebody caught a mouse while I was asleep...and he seems to have eaten it, which is good. 


Buster likes to sleep in the bathroom in the winter, because the tile holds the heat better than the wood floors, but he likes to sleep on a rug, so I have an old bath rug that I put down for him. He was on it both at 6:00 and 8:00, so I don't know when he got the mouse. I'm assuming it was him, because Jasmine doesn't usually take hers into the bathroom and he does. I guess he can see them better against the white, and besides, there are fewer places to hide in there.


I did a little knitting, but not much, and I did my morning surfing, but then I got right at the boxes, and all the new boxes are now unpacked, and I have begun working on the ones from last year. The first one of that sort that I looked at was just odds and ends, but I think it will get more interesting tomorrow.


I gave up on putting the silver away, because all of it is very tarnished, and I simply do not have time to get into that now. Wherever I put it, I would like it to be shined up and packed in truly air-tight bags. Someone suggested putting a piece of aluminum foil in the bags, and that makes sense to me, so I will try it. Besides, I have some new polishes on their way which might just make the task easier.


The other contents of those boxes were linens, including all the kitchen towels, aprons and pot holders that were at the other house. I will never have to buy another terry towel, linen towel, apron, placemat, or pot holder in my life.  It's nice to have more linen towels than I need to dry the crystal. The powder room towels also got into one of those boxes, and I now have loads of those, too, although some of them look to be terminally dirty.


I even found some old linen fingertip towels, which are so pretty, although some of them are well-used. The only problem with a lot of that stuff is that it was under the sink in the powder room when the drainpipe went, so they are stained. I will (eventually) try washing them, and maybe soak them in Oxi-Clean and see if I can get them clean. The linen towels will go with my small collection of antique linens, along with a beautiful cutwork bread cloth that I don't remember ever having seen before.


I found the tablecloth I want to use Thursday, and of course it was put away clean but not ironed, so I will have to do that.


The mystery of the load is the napkins. I have two sets of 11 and two (I think) of 7. Now, what happened to the other napkins? They come in sets of 8 and 12, so far as I know. There were high piles of towels and other stuff in the basement, which are now in this basement, and I will have to search carefully through those, although I don't remember seeing linen napkins. Another question I wish I could ask my mother...


The table is piled high right now, and there is a pile on the buffet, because I am a little reluctant to put the tablecloths in a drawer without something over the bare wood. A couple of the tablecloths and some of the napkins have spots and stains on them, some of which I think might have come from the wood. I must only remember that they're dirty, so that if the occasion ever arises that I want to use them, I can wash them then.


I had emptied out a medium box of odds and ends to put the silver in, and I had part of it in there. The odds and ends need to go someplace, too, but that is for another day. I now have 8 china barrels either empty or full of paper. Only four more to go! Whew!


The weather was a good for what I did. It was cloudy and windy, and the clouds were those billowy dark gray ones that sometimes have snow in them. There was a little bit of snow in the valley between the garage and the breezeway this morning, but nothing on the ground and nothing came down all day. The temperature started out at about 38º at midnight, dropped down to 31º for the middle of the day and has now risen to risen to 35º again. The wind is still blowing and the lake is still roaring away. There were a few rays of sun right before sunset, but nothing much. A typical gray November day.


Now my plan is to try to get to bed relatively early again tonight and hope I can sleep better. The best laid plans, and all that. I need to get my mind off my dinner and onto something more conducive to sleeping...and figure out a way to not hurt so much.


November 14

Well, I don't seem to be able to get to bed before midnight. I will try it again, but I don't know. It's about those socks...


I made it into bed by midnight, but I have a window that doesn't have a good seal on it, and it was moaning and whistling in the wind, so it was nearly 1:00 when I finally got to sleep. I did make it up around 10:00, I think, but I knit some more, so that shot the morning.


Let's see, I did accomplish a few things. I picked up the kitchen again, and got the dishwasher nearly ready to run tonight. I paid a couple of bills and went off to the post office, where there was another 3" pile of catalogs and no packages. Then about the time it got dark, I attacked the buffet again and everything is now put away. there is even a little space left over, in case I find something in the next three boxes I would like to have readily available. I've already found one thing: the stainless gravy container and ladle I gave my parents for one anniversary. I got myself a gravy boat when I moved in here, but I think this thing holds more...oh, that's right. The gravy boat needs to find a place in the buffet, doesn't it? Tomorrow.


Then, by the light of a flashlight, I unpacked the first box of silver and linens. That was mostly linens and odds and ends and it will have to be disposed of in daylight. I think one of the tablecloths is a round one, in which case, I want to keep it available (and I may have to iron it), and I think there may also be a round silent cloth. Most of the rest of the stuff was in the kitchen - everyday placemats, not so everyday placemats, aprons, and a lot of the beautiful potholders my mother appliquéd back in the middle 80s, which I will never use, but I may display at some point. And a lot of linen napkins, which I don't know whether I will ever use. Ironing those things is a chore. There were a couple of stainless platters (I thought there was another one that I ran across...I wonder what I did with it?) and some snack trays. I put the platters away, but I don't know what I'm going to do with the rest of that kind of stuff. I will be cleaning some silver and repacking it in more airtight bags, and that's all I'll say about that, Arthur.


The weather was sort of open and shut, mostly shut. There were some stars overnight, but it had clouded over by the time I got up this morning, and there were some impressive clouds that looked like they might have rain or snow in them but didn't. The temperature was about 45º for most of the morning, then it began to take a dive, and is now down to 38º. The wind was in the 20-35 mph range all day, from the northwest, although it has now backed northerly. I was chilly when I was out, but that is because I put on the wrong top this morning. They claim it is going to snow tonight. We shall see.


I moved some piles around in the office, but it is still a total disaster. I have a 3' pile of catalogs, not to mention the ones under the desk, that I need to go through and weed out, and a 3" pile of must-read magazines and catalogs. 


I called and made an appointment for Saturday with my new hairdresser. My hair has gotten to the point where it is sticking out in all directions, and it needs to be shaped up and tamed down again. This was a very good haircut, and with a little tweaking, the next one should be even better. And it certainly is nice to have my hairdresser come to my house!


So now let's see if I can get back on a human schedule before the weekend. The lake is roaring with a most satisfactory sound, and the wind from the north won't make the window whistle, so it should be a good night for sleeping.


November 13

Another late night. This time it was some nice cotton yarn I got that I wanted to swatch. It is my favorite shade of aqua, and it will make a beautiful summer sweater. I have a very ambitious idea of what I want it to look like, but first I need to decide what size needles to knit it on. I seem to have misplaced a bunch of my needles - no 3s, 6s or 10½s. I know they are in this house, but that doesn't help much. I've tried 4s and 5s, which aren't much different in size, and I'd like to try 6s, if I can find them. So I guess I will go back to socks for a while.


Buster was sleeping on the bath rug, which he frequently does when I sit in the bathroom for a while after his brushing, and Jasmine came and curled up, too, but after a while, she got rambunctious and he ran off. So she lay down exactly where he had been sitting. So close...but I reached down my hand, and she saw it, and that was the end of that.


I was awake briefly at 8:30, and that seemed much too soon to get up...but the next time I woke up was noon! Wow! I guess I was catching up on my sleep again. It certainly shortens the day.


However, I was bound to do something, even though I started late and it got dark early. All the china is in the buffet, and the good news is that I am going to have plenty of room for the rest of the stuff, at least what goes in cupboards. For the rest of the evening, I washed serving dishes and glassware, since it was too dark to work in the great room.


It did occur to me, as I was sitting and drying water goblets, that one of my least favorite chores has always been doing dishes, and here I am washing and drying tons of stuff. It is fun to see how the crystal shines, though. Even the Blenko goblets, which are so old I haven't found them in the Replacements catalog, look much better. They are cobalt glass, I think, and they are sooo pretty. The other goblets I think are cut crystal, and they shine up very nicely. 


The rest of the stuff is miscellaneous serving pieces, small bowls, four nice glass salad bowls, some divided trays for relishes, and things like that.


There is a lot of that stuff that I wish I could ask my mother about. Not only are there Fostoria goblets and sherbets with a lovely etched pattern, there are trays, salad plates, and serving dishes in the same pattern. I wonder how she got so much of that. I know she picked a silver flatware pattern, but I didn't think she chose china or crystal. It never occurred to me to ask about some of those things, and I wish I had. And there is a lot of miscellaneous stuff that I wish I knew where she got it.


It was a mostly cloudy day, with west winds in the 15-35 mph range. The temperature went up to about 55º and has stayed there for most of the afternoon. It was cloudy enough that it got dark really early - right about the time the sun set. That was all right, since I had so much to wash.


Buster was asleep in his turned up box when I started rustling around, and he moved to a box of paper for a while, then he went off. I was making too much noise, and I was doing some suspicious things when I put the first two shelves in the cupboards.


So in spite of my truncated day, I did some things. Tomorrow I hope to get more done. Surely I should be able to get everything that is on the table into the cupboards. Then I can start on the boxes marked "Linens and Silver". Whew! What a job.


Even though I guess I slept long enough, I don't feel like I got enough sleep. I was dreaming most of the time, really crazy stuff, so it wasn't a deep sleep. Tonight I will try to cut down on the knitting a bit and get to bed earlier. At least I'll try.


The wind is howling and banging around, so I imagine the lake is speaking, too, and it should be a good night to sleep. 


November 12

Last night it was Tofutsies. That is a new sock yarn, which is made of soy silk and chitin blended with merino wool and cotton. I got a ball that is aqua, pale green and gray, and it has been calling me ever since it arrived. So last night I cast on a sock, also using my new nickel plated needles (mostly I have used bamboo needles for socks). I was really wondering what it would look like, so I knitted half the ribbing.


That meant it was 1:00 or later when I got to bed. And wouldn't you know, when I woke up at 9:00, Buster was staring at me, so like it or not, I got up.


I knit up the rest of the ribbing and started the leg. It is going to be very comfortable to wear, but it doesn't have much stretch, and the colors come out sort of tweedy and blotchy, which is OK, I guess. If the ball band is any indication, some colorways and some sizes cause it to come out in sort of random stripes, but in my large size, it will be tweedy and blotchy. I do like the colors. I also like the needles. They are substantial and surprisingly soft and warm in the hand and not as slippery as I was afraid they would be. That's good, because I got a whole set - six sizes between 2 mm and 3.25 mm. So I am set to knit any sock yarn between lace weight and sport weight.


So that sock was OK. Then I cast on my silk and wool sock, which is the softest of the soft, really yummy yarn. The colors are sort of weird - coral, blue, lavender, gray and white, with a couple of rows of black and white dots between each band. The bands were printed for a smaller sock than mine, so there are not quite two rows of each color, but it's kind of interesting, and I do love the feel of the yarn. I got the ribbing done and started the leg of that one, too, and did some reading while I worked.


Whew! That brings us to about 3:00 this afternoon, and I decided I'd better do something...anything. First, I moved everything off the dining table and washed a couple of pieces of glass that I'd missed. I moved a few things around in the glass cabinet: there is really too much in there! Then I cleaned the doors of the buffet, and I got off all the residue from the masking tape.


In order to do that, I had to move some things around, and first I disrupted Buster, who was sleeping in a box that was turned on its side, amongst the wadded paper. So he jumped into the china barrel of paper that I was planning to fill up...of course. Fortunately, I had another box, and for the rest, I just left it on the floor until I emptied another box.


He was in the box right next to the one I was unpacking, and when it was almost empty, he jumped in to see what was there, then he got out and sat on the top of the scratching post for quite a while, as I unpacked. He is a funny little cat.


I got the two boxes marked "dishware" and "kitchen" unpacked. There was a china service for twelve, two sets of eight water goblets, one cut glass and one gorgeous Blenko blue (which I have always loved), and more small serving bowls than I realized. A lot of the stuff is dirty: there were dead meal moths in almost all the goblets, and I could tell which was the top plate in the stacks of china. So I have some washing to do. All the stuff fit on the table, though, so I can work on it from there. 


I was sad to discover that one bread-and-butter plate was missing and another has a bad chip in it. I don't know why those things, particularly, got broken, but that's the way it goes. The china is new enough that the pattern name is printed on the bottom, though, so I will go out to Replacements.com and see what I can find. While I don't know that I would have picked that particular pattern, which has a pale blue band with flowers and a small silver edge, I have always liked it, and my mother set a beautiful table with that china. I promised her ghost, Cynthia, and myself that I will use it.


All that unpacking got me nicely warmed up and sweaty, and it was getting late in the day (geez, the sun sets at 5:20 these days, and it goes behind the hill 10 minutes earlier!), so the putting away will have to wait until tomorrow. I have a little hope that there is enough room in the buffet for all of it, although I'm not sure about the goblets. I couldn't turn on any lights, because a little parti-colored cat of my acquaintance dislodged the extension cord from the floor plug and the lamps don't light. That will be fixed, but not until I get the dining room chairs out of the seating area.


Back in the good old days of Copper Harbor, Connie Parenti had the Lost Child Shop where Phoebe lives now, and she always had a nice selection of rice bowls, lotus bowls, china soup spoons and things like that. My mother collected a lot of those, which she did use, for things like nuts and olives and other munchies. I'm glad she did: I liked them, too, but I didn't have any reason to buy them. 


There are also four glass condiment spoons, which I don't remember her ever using. I may use one of them on Thanksgiving for the cranberry sauce. It is so neat to have all these things that I have always loved.


So I think I can say I accomplished something today. I have two more empty boxes! However, I think there are actually three boxes of linens and silver, and that will be a problem. Ron offered to help with the boxes, but I may have to ask him to put away the serving pieces in the upper cabinets. After my disaster with the little plate yesterday, I'm not too sure about climbing up ladders and lifting things into cupboards. Fortunately, most of that stuff isn't breakable!


That has been my worst fear about unpacking the breakables. What if something should slip out of a package onto the bare floor? Fortunately, there weren't any more casualties, but believe me, I was really careful today!


Oh, yes, and in one of the boxes, I discovered the mirror for the vanity which is upstairs. I had been wondering what happened to it. I am not sure how I will get that back together. And since I discovered the knobs that hold it in the very bottom of a box, now I have to transfer all the paper from one box to another, just to make sure I didn't miss anything. 


Tomorrow the plan is to try to get everything stashed away in the buffet. I certainly hope it goes.


The weather was nice. It started out cloudy, but in the middle of the day, the sun came out, and it was perfectly clear at sunset. The temperature was just about 45º all day, and there was a strong northwest wind, in the 15-35 mph range. There were nice whitecaps on the harbor all afternoon, but with the sun so low in the sky, the camera didn't pick up much of them. The sun is now only 26º high in the south at noon, which still shocks me when I see it. And it will go lower before it turns around.


Last night while I was knitting, Buster curled up on the bath rug and went to sleep, and a while later, Jasmine came in and curled up with him. He knew she was there, and he was purring in his sleep! Of course, when he woke up, he tried to bite her ears and things, but he can't fool me. He likes having her here.


Jasmine spent a lot of time with us last night, curled up on the rug with Buster, and this morning, when I got up, she was sitting on the rug by the bed, and even when I stood up, she didn't move. So slowly, ever so slowly, we are making progress. Sometimes she sees me and runs away, and sometimes she holds her ground. That has to be a good sign. She likes to be with Buster, a lot more than he likes having her, but she seems to like being around me, too, so long as I don't try to reach out to her. One of these days, maybe I can really pet her. Poor little kitty! I only hope I can overcome the first nine months of her life.


So I accomplished something today, and that feels good, and I need more sleep tonight so I can fiddle with the buffet tomorrow. And knit. I had to stop knitting today, because my hands were getting sore. Those socks are both interesting.


And that's how it is in the field.


November 11

I ended up reading until nearly midnight, so I was late getting to bed, and I didn't sleep very well. I'm not sure why, except that it was warmish in the bedroom and that is always a problem. 


I was knitting while I read, and this morning I finished the bamboo sock. While I was looking at it, I realized that I had managed to miscount the leg, and it is an inch longer than I intended. Since I make my socks long anyway, this one is going to be nearly mid-calf length. I need some little tags to put on my safety pins that mark the rows, telling me exactly how many rows that pin marks. It could have been critical, but I had a couple of yards of yarn from that ball left when I finished. I certainly was not interested in ripping out the foot and the heel to shorten it!


I managed not to do much else today. I did get the last of the glassware put away where it belongs, and I picked up the kitchen (again). I also dropped and broke a little glass plate that I had used to set my pepper grinder on. A matter of reaching too far. Grr.


It was a cloudy, hazy day with not much wind until late in the afternoon. The temperature was in the upper 40s, and it got up to 48º once the southwest wind began to blow.


The dining room table is really looking empty, so I guess it's time to fill it up again. Tomorrow.


I have been listening to Pipedreams, which is a program of organ music. It's been some time since I've listened to it, and it's nice to hear organs again. But it is over now, and it's time to move up to the north end and try this sleep thing again.


November 10

I was a bad girl last night and today both. I played my game late enough that it was after 1:00 when I got to bed this morning, although I did get up about 10:00. And I played it for most of the afternoon until I got frustrated that I couldn't remember the moves in the hints. Maybe I can leave it alone tomorrow.


I did get the car unloaded, although all the stuff is still in the breezeway. I need to go through it, because I bought some new rubber gloves, and I need them. One pair that I found fell to pieces, and the other pair evidently has some holes in the fingers - the hazards of either not using the gloves for a long time, or using them where there are sharp objects around.


It was a dull, dreary day, but not cold and not windy. The temperature overnight got down to 36º, and it has now risen to 42º. Strange for November in Keweenaw, but I'll take it.


Now I am tired from not enough sleep, so I will toddle up to the north end and jump into bed. Three books on knitting came today, but I think I will just read my old story and knit a while. I'm making good progress on the sock, but halfway through I realized I should have knit it in a lace pattern. I'm not about to tear out a sock that is nearly done, so I guess that means more yarn?


It's a quiet night in the field.


November 9

I was a little later to bed last night, but not much, and for the most part, I think I did well...at least I don't remember being awake very much, and that is a good thing. I woke up around 8:00 and decided that was too early and I'd take my chances, and this time I was lucky: I woke up around 9:30, which was fine.


Several people emailed me about the dredge I saw yesterday, so I will repeat what they said. The big pillars on the barge are called "spuds", and they lower down into the bottom under the barge to keep it anchored while it is dredging. Oh. The only comment I had was, unless part of them were still under water, the barge couldn't be working in very deep water, because they weren't that high. Anyway, I saw something new and I learned something new, so that is good.


I did diddle around for most of the day, and got a new game, which, fortunately, I can play at intervals. I decided that no matter what, I was going to do something useful today.


So around 4:00 I attacked the great room. I packed up three boxes of stuff I know I won't want - mugs and vases, mostly - and I moved things around in the glass cabinet to make room for a few more things. I washed the last of the glass. Some of it will go into the cabinet and some will, I think, fit in the kitchen. That is for tomorrow. The table is not completely bare, but it's a lot better than it was. That took me almost to dinner time, and washing the glass almost did my back in, but it is done. 


Tomorrow maybe I can work on the cupboards in the buffet. The glass needs to be cleaned, and I need to put the shelves in place. Some of the stuff on the table will go in there.


I haven't decided what to do with the Black Forest gnome, which is nearly 18" high. I don't want to put it where it has the chance of getting knocked over, which would mean maybe a mantel, but I rather like the mantel in the great room with nothing on it. That means the mantel in the office, which is getting rather full, but maybe I can move some things around there, too.


I am getting quite a number of boxes which need to go down into the basement, so one of these days I will put a call out for the legs in Copper Harbor and try to get that stuff out of the way, but I'd rather wait as long as possible, to get as much down there as I can.


I am not sure how much the buffet will hold, and I know that packed with the linens are a large number of serving pieces which I could put on the high shelves in the kitchen, if I can reach the high shelves in the kitchen.


Then there are the two or three china barrels and a couple of boxes marked "Living Room" that I have no idea whatever is in them. They are from last year, and I can't believe there was that much stuff lying around the living room on Champine, so what's in there is a mystery.


Earlier in the day, I discovered Jasmine sitting on the floor between the glass cabinet and the boxes, which I thought was a strange place for her, right on the bare floor, but she seemed quite comfortable. She went away when I started rustling around, but Buster, who had been sitting on a cat perch looking out the front windows, jumped into a half-full box of paper...the box, of course, where I had been planning to get the paper to wrap with. So I had to use the other box, which meant some walking around. Eventually he got out of the big box and curled up in a box on the floor. I know they like the floor because it is heated, but Buster, at least, likes the insides of boxes and the piles of paper. I had to put some stuff in the empty box he had been using, which will disappoint him, I'm sure.


It was a mostly cloudy, cool and damp day. The temperature got down to 28º overnight, and it rose steadily to 39º, where it stayed and still is. There was a very little rain this morning, but otherwise it was just dampish. There was hardly any wind at all again.


When I was up in the night and when I got up this morning, my ankles were so stiff I could hardly walk at all, but by afternoon they had loosened up. I thought my back was all right until I started washing dishes, then it stiffened so that I could hardly stand up. The glassware looks fine, though, so I guess I got it clean. That includes eight cut glass coasters that apparently I had never washed, which still had the residue from cigarette smoke on them, making them look yellowish. Now they are nice and clear white. It still surprises me how dirty things that were in cupboards have gotten.


In order to do the washing, I had to put things in the dishwasher and put away a bunch of pots and pans that had been washed and left to air dry. Maybe that's why my back was so bad by the time I started washing.


And that was my quiet day. I do feel that I accomplished something, for a change, and I have promised myself I will try to do something every day. The truth of the matter is, when I get at it, it doesn't take all that long to get something done. It's the getting at that's hard.


You will notice that I didn't finish unloading the car. Maybe tomorrow.


I drove to dinner with bags in the back of the car. There were a few people in Mariner, including a nice lady named Linda, with whom I had an email conversation earlier in the year. She and her family, husband and two kids, were on a short, fast tour of the UP, since they didn't make it earlier. So many nice people read this thing!


Now I can shuffle up to the north end feeling that I've accomplished something for the day, and it's time for bed again.


November 8

I was a good girl, and I got to bed about 10:30, but it took me a while to get to sleep. I was thinking about the two weeks till Thanksgiving, I think, and whether, somehow, I can be ready to have company. While I was thrashing around, I noticed that the lights of town seemed dimmed by a sort of white haze, and we did indeed have a little more snow overnight. After that, I slept well.


I think I would have kept right on sleeping, except that I got a call from the electrician about 9:00, so I got up, thinking, oh, good, I can get an early start to town. Hah!


After knitting, doing my morning surfing, having some breakfast, and getting together the stuff to take along, it was 12:30 before I left the house, then I had to stop briefly at the post office to mail a bill and return the barrel. So I was late.


When I got to Wal-Mart, there would be at least an hour wait for my prescription, so I told them to send it to me and went on my way. Probably just as well. I've been hitting the credit card pretty hard lately, and I'm sure I would have found something there to buy.


So it was on to Econo, and I really thought I wouldn't be getting much...Hah! My basket was full and I forgot about TV dinners. However, I do have some good things to eat...and drink. As always, I was hot and dripping when I left there, and my feet and ankles were sore. But I sat on the bumper while my gas tank was filling, and that cooled me off nicely. Gas was $3.26, or higher, so it is indeed going up. Where that under-$3 gas is, I can't imagine. Not in the upper Midwest, for sure. Maybe at the Indian station, but for sure not here.


Going south was delightful. I didn't meet one car in my direction until Allouez, and almost everybody was going fast...until we got to the bridge. As I arrived, the gates were down, the lights were red and the bridge was ever so slowly going up. It had been all the way down, so it took a while, and then it took a while longer for a dredge to go floating by. There was a crane on the dredge, and two very high pillars, that I have no idea what they were for. Since I was sitting there with the engine off, watching the show, I grabbed the camera and took a few pictures. They aren't good pictures, but that is about what I was seeing. In the second picture, you can see the pillars on either side of the dredge. I suppose if I was a dedicated photographer I would have jumped out of the car and run over to the railing, but I'm not. I don't jump very well, and I can't run at all.


Traffic moves so well around Houghton and Hancock that it was remarkable to see how many cars were backed up in the ten minutes or so that the bridge was up. They only put it down to the lower deck, which I thought was nice of them. They could have made us wait until it was back down all the way, and down in the southern lower, they would have. Most people are nicer up here.


The trip back was much better. I lapped the only possible problem at Cliff Drive, and I had a clear shot from there on.


The weather was actually rather nice. The temperature was in the upper 30s and there was some sunshine amidst the clouds. There was no wind at all, so it was pleasant to be out. I didn't even put my jacket on when I left Econo, and my light-weight polarfleece top was quite enough. Of course, I did see a guy or two with short sleeved shirts, but no shorts.


The road was mostly wet on the way south, with just a couple of places on the covered road where there was a little snow left. The county had sanded down to Delaware and salted south of there, and it looks like there may be enough people living on Cliff Drive that they will keep it open this winter, not that it matters that much off-season. Coming back, most of the road was dry. They had a little more snow from Lake Medora to Calumet than we did, but I doubt there was more than 2" anywhere.


I was hungry when I got home, so I unloaded the cold stuff right away, and had a sandwich and some pasta salads and veggies for dinner.


It was such a pretty day here that I was sorry to have to leave, but it was time to fill the fridge and the gas tank, so both those things are done. I ordered a turkey for Thanksgiving, in the hopes that I can make room for us to sit and eat it, so I will be going back in a couple of weeks, and I can get my frozen stuff then.


Now it is high time I toddled up to the north end and tried for the early-to-bed, early-to-rise thing again. Maybe tomorrow I can do something.


November 7

Well, so much for that. I thought that if I got to bed nice and early last night (and I did - at 10:00), I would wake up early and maybe accomplish something today. Hah! I don't remember the last time I took a walk, but I think it was probably between 6:00 and 7:00, and that was clearly too early. Well, the next time I woke up was 10:15. I guess I must have needed the sleep. but that was not what I had planned.


So about all I did today was unload the dishwasher and go to the post office, where I acquired a barrel again. That was mostly two packages, but I did get a remarkable number of catalogs. I now have a two-foot pile of all the catalogs I have received since the 15th of October, and I really need to go through the old piles and the new piles and get rid of some stuff. Gad! All the trees they are killing!


When I went to bed last night, there was a little frosting of snow all over everything, and it was still there tonight, there wasn't any more precip today. The temperature wavered around 32º, but there wasn't any wind, and it was a uniformly dull, gray day.


I spent some time outdoors, standing around in front of the post office talking to my neighbor two doors north...one of the principals in the lawsuit. I don't think he knows my opinion of that, and I have managed to keep pretty good relations with him. I like his wife a lot, but she doesn't spend much time here. Anyway, while I was out, it really wasn't bad at all, if you were dressed for it. I had my heavy fleece jacket on, but it wasn't zipped, and the only part of me that was cold was my hands, but that's normal. I have Reynaud's Syndrome, and that means things like fingers, toes, nose, and upper lip tend to get cold and numb. I've had it forever, and I guess I'm used to it by now.


Anyway, in all that pile of mail, there weren't any telephone bills. Really, really weird.


I tried bringing my nice dinner into the office in the dark, and ended up dropping it all on the floor, so I ate my hamburger on buns soaked in JD (not very good) and only a little bit of my broccoli with white cheddar sauce. And besides, I had to clean up all the food on the floor and the broken plate...so I had to quick go to Replacements.com and order a new one. I checked eBay, too, but they were selling them in lots of 4 or more, and I don't need 4: I only need one. My experience has been that except in extraordinary circumstances, Replacements tends to be cheaper than eBay, and you're assured of getting what you want.


And anybody who tries to tell you Corelle is unbreakable hasn't ever dropped one on a bare wooden floor. It doesn't chip much, and it is more durable than, other kinds of dinnerware, but it isn't unbreakable. This is the second thing I've broken since I've been here. About the only advantage I ever found of carpeted floors is that things don't break so easily. The food you drop does make a worse mess, though.


So it wasn't much of a day, and I will try this early-to-bed, early-to-rise thing again and see what happens. I'm thinking of going to town tomorrow, and getting an early start would be nice.


Well, the first snow is on the ground and on the deck, and the days are getting shorter all the time, so calendar notwithstanding, winter is upon us. And I just realized it's only about two weeks until Thanksgiving...yiee!


November 6

Well, that was fun!


I'm afraid I don't remember much about yesterday. I think I got up late, and by the time I did, the wind was rising into the 25-35 mph range, and it kept rising all day. We had had some rain early in the day, and while there were raindrops on the windows, and at least one short blast of snow across the harbor, there wasn't any measurable precip here after that.


We had a 2 hour power outage between about 2:15 and 4:15, and I think everybody thought that was the end of it. However, by the time the power came back up we were in the throes of a strong gale (36-50 mph), and in that situation, almost anything might happen.


The power outage sort of short-circuited what I was planning to do, although I did get the dishwasher unloaded and reloaded and the kitchen picked up, which is nice. I don't remember exactly what I was doing while the power was off, besides listening to the lake and watching the waves and whitecaps on the harbor. The wind was from the north throughout the entire storm, 


Since I had gotten up late, I was diddling around, and I had just started the oven to have a pizza when, about 9:00, we lost power again. Oops! So I put the pizza back in the freezer, dug out a steak, and had some canned beets and the rest of the German potato salad...a very nice dinner indeed. It was interesting to cook by the light of two small flashlights, but so long as I what I want to cook can be done on the cooktop, it isn't much of a problem. 


After I ate, however, it was so dark that shortly afterwards, I went to bed, after I allowed just enough time for some digestion. I could knit, sort of, with the two flashlights pointed where my hands were.


There's a funny story about that. When I got undressed in the closet, I took off my glasses. I was about to get into bed and read my prayer book when I realized I wasn't wearing them, and it took me a few minutes to figure out where I had left them. I had been knitting, almost in the dark, without my glasses!


The north wind meant I hadn't heard any wind when I went to bed, and all night long the lake was roaring so loudly that it was hard to hear the wind at all, although every so often something would bang against the house with a thud. The lake was incredibly noisy.


Unfortunately, with no power, I don't know what the absolute peak winds were, but according to the NWS reports today, the last reading had 41 mph sustained winds, with gusts to 53 mph. I think it was like that all night long.


It was incredibly dark. The lighthouse was out. I thought it had a power backup, but I guess  not. For a good part of the night, it was so dark, I couldn't even tell where the windows were. I certainly couldn't see my hand in front of my face, and fortunately Buster stayed out of my way, because I couldn't have seen him even in the white bathroom. So I was lying in absolute darkness hearing the roaring of the lake and the banging of the wind...


I had gotten up to go to the bathroom at 7:30 when the power came back on, and the septic alarm came on at the same time. So since I had to go downstairs to turn that off, I decided to just stay up. And that's about as early as I've gotten up in several years. I came down to the office and got the computer started and did my morning surfing before I got dressed.


It wasn't a very nice time to be up. The sun doesn't rise until 7:45, and it was dull and dreary and uninspiring. The wind had backed a little, down to the 35-45 mph range, but the lake was still roaring away. There was an unbroken line of breakers all the way from Porter Island to the lighthouse. However, the radio had been on when the power went down, so I ended up listening to "Morning Edition", which I used to do every morning when I was working, and which I haven't heard for five or six years.


I didn't eat until about 11:00, when I was getting cold and had a tummy ache, but after some chicken and noodles (Stouffer's, not mine) and milk and a nice cup of chai for dessert, I felt much better.


In fact, I felt so good that I decided to go out to Pebbly Beach and see what I could see. I got out my parka and my hat, and I discovered that I've misplaced my favorite pair of lined leather gloves, and I took off in the car with the camera. I should have taken my staff, too, but I forgot that. It isn't very far, but I doubt I can walk that far anymore.


It was worth the trip. The wind was still in the 25-40 mph range, which meant the wind chill was down in the low 20s, but the lake was worth seeing. After I took my pictures, I sat for a while on the bumper of the car, until my face and my hands were almost frozen. I love to watch the unrestrained power of the lake when it is riled up. It was interesting, too, because there were waves coming from two directions, west or northwest and north to northeast, and when a 10' wave from the west met a 10' wave from the north, the result was spectacular (I didn't get a picture of that - I wasn't fast enough).


Anyway, here are the pictures. I guess those big ones were around 10' or a little more. By way of disclaimer, I had to twiddle with the pictures. Not only were they dark, every one had a slant of 2º to 3º. In fact, everything I've taken a picture of lately is slanted a bit...so it must be me, right? I used to check for that sort of thing. I just haven't been taking enough pictures.


Among the pictures I got out of the camera were the ones of "Angel of Love", by Marilyn Leavitt-Imblum. I had been putting off posting it because I wanted her permission to do so, and she finally gave it...that's what the copyright thingie is all about. Here it is. It isn't a perfect picture. You can see the reflection of the windows, and me, on the glass over the picture. Since the sun was shining on it, you can see the glitter of the metallics and the beads. Most of the skirt is either metallic (gold, copper and brown) or beads (apricot, gold, copper and brown). The designer said she got the inspiration when she went to a show of Gustav Klimt paintings. It is one of those things that cross stitchers either love or hate. I happen to love it, and it's one of the most fun pieces I have ever stitched. I wanted it framed in an oval mat because I don't like the color of the background very well, and I wanted to keep the amount that showed as small as possible. The outer mat is navy suede, to highlight the color of the cape. This is the piece that kept me from doing any embroidery for over a year: every time I thought I wouldn't get it back, I got sick to my stomach, and every time I worked on the angel I'm doing now, I thought about "Love". So it is sitting on the cellaret where I can look at it every time I pass. One of these days, I'll figure out where to hang it.


When I got home from the beach, I washed the dishes and the parka, hats, my down-filled mittens and the utility gloves I was wearing (that I used when making fires last winter). Some of that is still in the dryer, since it takes a long time to dry things on low heat. But now I am certainly ready for winter, except to find my leather gloves...easier said than done, the way things are around here now.


I heard from Ron, saying that Trevor couldn't go to school today, because there was a big pine down across US-41 around Fort Wilkins, and when he called the bus driver, he had turned back because there were so many trees down on the covered road. No wonder we didn't have any power. I didn't even try to go to the post office.


And while it's early, I was up early this morning, and I didn't get a bath last night, so I will be toddling up to the north end real soon.


It's been a fun couple of days, although I put in a call to the electrician this afternoon. I need that generator. It only got down to 62º in here when the power was off, but that is because the temperature was in the upper 30s all the time. If this happened with the temperature in the upper teens, I would have been in some distress. I haven't heard back from him...maybe tomorrow.


And now to bed, with the song of the lake in my ears... Love it.


November 5

No update tonight. The power went out at 9:00. I'm writing this at about  7:30 on November 6 and there will be an update later.


November 4

I always feel rather discombobulated the day of the time change, and it's even more so today.


I read and knitted for a long time last night, so I got to bed late, and I was thankful that the time change had happened, because I got up at 10:30. Then I knitted some more, and worked the first half of the heel.


I did accomplish one thing today, although I kept forgetting about it: I washed. The last load is in the dryer now, and it's rather critical, because all my nightgowns and all  my compression hose are in that load. I was planning to do more, but I felt like I didn't get enough sleep, so I did nothing.


It was a rather pretty day, with quite a bit of sunshine, although there were cumulous clouds in the sky all afternoon, that looked like they might melt together. However, it was clear at sunset. I guess it has now clouded up. The temperature was around 45º all day, with not much wind, and it was quite calm for several hours. 


We are on the verge of another gale, and the NWS says the sky is falling again. John Dee's forecasts start tomorrow, and I will be interested to see what he says about the storm. He is usually a lot more moderate about these things, and more often than not, he is right. The NWS has posted gale warnings from tomorrow morning through Tuesday morning, and waves up to 20 feet on Monday night, with rain turning to snow, and up to 10" possible. The sky is falling! The sky is falling!


I'm sure it will be a good blow, and it makes sense that there will be snow - it's time - but I don't know about the numbers. It will be fun to see.


I'm ready, except that the shutters aren't down on the porch, so I guess I will do that tomorrow morning, and hope I don't have to do it in the rain and/or snow, although I've done that before. It doesn't take more than 10 minutes to pull them down and lock them, and most of that time is sorting out the locks. Would you believe that each of the shutters has its own key, and they are all different! Geez... Anyway, sometimes I have to work with the locks to get them into place. It was just too nice out to do it today. 


I hate to pull down the shutters, because it is so dark in the kitchen and the hallway after I do. But with my nice porch furniture out there this year, it's more important than ever. I also have a couple of tarps to throw over the furniture to try to keep it as clean as possible. One of the tasks on the list is to find some fabric and recover the cushions. I think I know what I want, but I researched it last August, and I don't remember what website I found it on. It is white with blue and green flowers...very non-trendy. However, I think it will be nice. There is a coordinated stripe, and that would look neat for the pillows and maybe the footstool. One of these days, I will get to the sewing machine, and it will be smokin'.


As I sort of hoped, one of my correspondents responded to my tale of how I upload the web, and he made some suggestions that I have implemented, and we'll see if that solves my problem of having to say "no" 400 times. I certainly hope so. I have my fingers crossed. When I have to say "no" that many times, on this computer, FrontPage eats up all available memory and doesn't release it when it ends, so I frequently have to reboot after I'm done, to clear that up.  Sometimes, it writes over part of the operating system, and I get some kind of error that only shows a blank box on the screen, and I have to reboot to fix that, too. It doesn't do that on the laptop, so it baffles me. However, this latest change, if it works, should take care of all of that. Stay tuned...


Now it is very late by any clock, and it's time to toddle up to the north end and hope my nightie is dry. I skipped the bath last night, so my hair is horrible and I need to take care of that. I am going back to my winter schedule, where I eat out on Friday and Saturday and on Sunday, I don't wear my compression hose (I have big ankles right now) and I usually put on a pair of sweat pants and some sort of cozy top. It's one day of the week when I don't have to worry about being seen, so I might as well be comfy.


I hate Daylight Savings Time, and I've said so before. I see no reason for it except to line the pockets of a few people who give lots of money to the politicians. It is, however, quite a shock to see the sun set at 5:30 in the afternoon! We have less than 10 hours of daylight now, and it is still getting shorter at almost 3 minutes a day...we've turned the corner and we're sliding down to the low point now. The sun rises at about 7:40 in the morning, which doesn't register with me very much, since I'm still sleeping then. While that may be better for some of the children going to school, it certainly doesn't make a difference to Trevor, who has to catch his bus sometime around 7:15 now, and it will be even earlier when the snow comes.


I think the differences in the length of day is one of the things that draw me to this place and continually fascinates me. We are only about 5º of latitude north of Detroit, but the change in day length is much more obvious here than there, at least to me.


But that is all part of the joy of living here, being so close to the rhythms of the natural world. I have just immersed myself in that, and it's one reason I don't even like to go to Houghton. That is "civilization", and it's too far from nature. Or at least that's how I see the situation.


So it's a calm, quiet night in the field, and if the four-footed barometers are right, it's going to be completely different tomorrow.


Love it.


November 3

Well, another day, another nothing.


I got to knitting again last night, and it was around midnight when I got to bed. I was up around 10:00, I think, after a very strange dream that included the house on Champine and the man who did my grass. Very strange. I guess I need to get all those memories straightened out and tamped down.


I'm not sure what took up all the time today. I didn't surf that much and I didn't play games too much. I didn't even knit very much, but time passed.


It was a pretty day. There were puffy white clouds in the sky all day long, and a lot of sunshine. From this time of year through April, I appreciate all the sunshine I can get, because it cuts down on the heat bill (which is atrocious). The temperature outside hung in at about 44º. The wind picked up around noon, but it has died down again and it is now calm, and when I left the restaurant, the sky was clear. 


It isn't quite dark enough to see second magnitude stars, but I may try for the comet again. I didn't last night, and by the time I finished uploading the journal, I think it was cloudy, or at least there seemed to be a layer of cirrus clouds later in the night.


Something bit me yesterday, on the wrist. I can hardly believe it, but it formed a little blister like a black fly bite. Unfortunately, I broke it today, so tonight I will put a Band-Aid on it. It certainly looks like a black fly bite, and it itches like one, too. Well, as I've always said, if there is a black fly in Copper Harbor (actually, in Grant Township) it will find me and bite me.


I guess I should say something about the length of time it takes me to write and publish these journals. Depending upon the length, it takes between half an hour and an hour to write them, I think. I try to re-read what I've written to catch the most obvious errors, although you know sometimes I miss them. 


Then I usually reboot the computer, to free up as many resources as possible. That takes time. FrontPage wants to delete all the files it doesn't know about, which are the statistics files, the camera files, and the log files. There are between 350 and 400 of those files, and I have to say "no" to each one. I use the "N" key, held down to repeat, but I have to do it in about two second increments, or something overflows, so it takes quite a while to get to the point of actually doing the upload. 


When only the journal file is changing, and it is small, like this one, the actual upload is very fast. However, if it is the end of the month, or there are pictures, or, heaven forefend, FrontPage decides to copy everything or almost everything, it can take two hours or more to do the copy. So even when I start early, sometimes it's late before it's done. Murphy's Law says that I can't leave it and hope it works, because it won't work unless I watch it, and sometimes the connection takes a hit and it stops. 


There are also times when the copy loses track of itself, or there is a glitch in the responses from the server, and it just times out (in 10 minutes). If the copy doesn't complete, I have to reboot and start over...sometimes I've done that three or four times before I give up and copy from Windows Explorer to Internet Explorer (which causes a weird message from FrontPage the next night).


So I guess I devote between 1 and 3 hours every night to this thing. If it wasn't so useful to me personally, I think I probably wouldn't do one every day. I find, particularly as I get older and my memory bank gets full, that having in the journal what happened that day is very useful. And that is why sometimes there are little details of my personal life, like calls to utilities and wet pants...and even what the kitties do. I have already checked back to see when Jasmine arrived...and since it's in the journal and written in my planner, I think, I can't remember when it was. It's like using a cane: you start using it and pretty soon you can't do without it (which is why the family cane is in the breezeway).


So that was another quiet day, and it's early enough that maybe I can knit and read for a while.


November 2

And there goes another whole week of doing nothing. Oh, well.


My plans went awry again last night, when, a quarter of the way through the copy, something happened at the server and I couldn't FTP anything using any program. So I called Charlie, and while we were talking, it mysteriously cleared up. I think maybe Jonathan was doing something Charlie didn't know about.


But then it took two tries to get the copy to work. It finally did, but it took over an hour, I think. I only get 128kb on uploads, and that is slow when I am copying 36mb of data.


Then when I got to the bathroom, I sat and knitted on the cotton sock for altogether too long. I decided that with the foot more than halfway done, I might as well finish the darn thing and get it out of the way. I still have the mate to do, but that can come later. Anyway, I finished it this afternoon, and now I can get back to some of the other ones.  Both the bamboo sock and the one on #2 needles are coming along very well, since sometimes I get tired of the really little needles, and the #2s are enough bigger that the knitting goes faster. 


I actually got up around 10:00 for a change this morning. I was sleeping on my left side, where I started the night, and my hip got sore from lying on it. Besides, both cats were in bed looking at me. Jasmine ducked when I tried to pet her, but when I sat up, she sat down at the end of the bed with her paws tucked in, looking very comfortable.


So I knitted and got to the office late. I had to go to the post office to mail a number of things, but that is about all I did.


The weather was nice for a change. It was about 46º all night, and in the low 50s all day, although it did get up to 55º at 2:00 when the wind dropped. It was windy, and I guess there were gale warnings out on the lake, although it didn't get that windy here. We had some gusts up to about 30 mph, but most of the time it was in the 15-20 mph range. There were cirrus clouds in the sky for most of the day, but around 5:00 it cleared up and at sunset it was quite clear. After I do this, I am going to turn out the lights and see if I can see the comet.


So that was my day, and with any kind of luck, I should get to bed a bit earlier tonight.


November 1

Well, the best laid plans and all that. For the past two nights, FrontPage has been trying to copy all the image files - all 36 mb of them - to the web, and of course it has crapped out both times. This time the broadband took a hit when it was about 80% complete, and that took a long time. I did get some knitting done. So tonight I'm starting earlier and we'll hope it works and doesn't take too long.


Add to that, I had to sit in the bathroom for a while, so it was after 1:00 when I finally got to bed. I did sleep well...and forever. A friend called me at about 11:45 and woke me up...not only was I glad to hear from her, I was glad she called. I might have slept all day. 


Not that I did anything except go to the post office. I didn't get to the office until after 1:00 pm and after I did my daily surfing, I just about had time to get to the post office. I had a sandwich after I got back. A package did come, as well as a very official-looking envelope from a lawyer for "restricted delivery", whatever that means.


The package was my new WaterPik, and the envelope was a release for the road-that-isn't that has been in litigation for over two years. For some reason not known to man, all the part owners of our little park (all 36 of us) and the township, the county and the state of Michigan have been added to the list of defendants, and since the road-that-isn't crosses our little park, we all have to sign off on it. Geez! Frankly, if I was one of the primary defendants, I would have counter sued for malicious harassment...and that is all I'll say about it, since one of the plaintiffs reads this thing. Anyway, of course, I immediately signed the release, and I will send it back tomorrow.


The wind howled and the lake roared almost all night long, and while it began abating around 7:00 am, it was quite windy until about 4:00 this afternoon. It is now completely calm. the temperature only got down to about 38º overnight, and it went up to 43º for a while this afternoon...but it's now down to 35º and possibly dropping. It was perfectly clear early in the day, but there were high cirrus clouds for most of the afternoon, and there wasn't much of a sunset tonight. I am not quite clear if we are in for another blow tomorrow, or if it will just be windy and nasty. I'm not sure the NWS knows. Anyway, short as it was, it was a good blow and I enjoyed it a lot.


I don't think Jasmine liked the noise, but she was around for most of the day today. She will just have to get used to the banging and crashing of the wind on the house. We will most likely have a lot of this weather over the next five months.


My long sleep did leave me feeling better today, I'm happy to say, although I didn't do much about it. I hope to do the same, starting earlier, tonight. Like I said, I did get some knitting done, on both socks, but I'm getting bored with socks, and it's time to find something else to knit. Socks are a good thing to knit, because I can do other things while I'm knitting, like read or listen to the radio (or TV, if I had one). Some other things, like lace, or color work or cables, I have to give my undivided attention to, although I can listen while I knit (except for lace - that requires my complete attention, no distractions at all). I do have a kit for a color work sweater, and I have been thinking about starting that. I haven't done much of that, and it's time I increased my skill. If this one works out, I have a genuine Fair Isle kit someplace downstairs that would be lovely to do. And there is an Aran sweater that has been gnawing at my mind for at least 4 years. 


And then there is the embroidery and the beading. And, oh, yeah, the boxes. All that should keep me busy for quite some time to come.


So that was my quiet, truncated day, and I need to do the sleep thing again.


Last  updated 08/04/11 08:45 PM