Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Our Memorial Day Weekend Extended

With both my Dad and Grace here, we have decided to extend the Memorial Day holiday to last the week. Why not? We have spent several days being very lazy and doing a lot of visiting, eating, and movie watching. The weather warmed up nicely for the first official day of summer and I think we spent most of the day lounging on the deck. We have eaten a lot of "picnic" food and enjoyed every bite. Today we ventured to the mall so that Grace could pick up a few things for her trip to Italy.The mall was surprisingly empty but we still hurried home so that we could continue doing pretty much nothing. After all, isn't that what a vacation is all about? I have to head back to work tomorrow, so my Dad and Grace will be on their own. I think I heard my Dad mention something about golf... Maybe Grace will drive the cart.... Or maybe Grace will just stay home. I hope you all had a great holiday. I know that summer will pass quickly and soon it will be fall. I'm going to try and enjoy as much outside time as I can.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

The Kentucky Sheep and Fiber Festival

 Another week has come and gone. Having Grace home for a couple of weeks before she leaves for Italy has kept me a little busier than usual. My Dad arrives this afternoon so I imagine this coming week will see little time for blogging as well. Our day trip to Lexington last weekend was a lot of fun. Not only did Grace and I buy way more yarn and fiber than we had intended to,  we got to see the cutest goats,sheep, lambs, llamas and alpacas. The 52nd annual Stockdog competition was going on in conjunction with the wool festival, so Alan spent most of his time watching the amazingly talented sheepdogs herd sheep. We realized how stupid our poor Maggie really is after watching those dogs.

My favorite pen. Don't you love the identification posters?

I know these are not the best photos of the dog herding, but hopefully you get the idea. The dog gets 3 sheep and moves them through an obstacle course covering a whole lot of ground. We were sitting pretty far away from the action so as not to distract the dogs. The whole event is similar to the one in the movie Babe if that helps any. It was very impressive to say the least.
In preparation for Memorial Day and the coming week I've done a bit of cooking and baking. If things turn out well I'll share some recipes  with you next week. I hope that you all enjoy the long weekend and the real beginning of summer.

Friday, May 17, 2013

The Weekend

Here it is, Friday again. Sometimes the weeks just speed by me, and then Friday gets here and I can take a deep breath and breathe. Do you ever feel like that. I'm not sure if it's relief or just habit. It's not like my weekdays are miserable or anything like that. I guess I just think of the weekends as mine to do whatever I want with. Speaking of that, I have actually been waiting for this weekend for a very long time. Tomorrow is the first day of the Kentucky Sheep and Wool Festival  it's held in conjunction with The Bluegrass Stockdog Trial. So, While Grace and I are shopping the barns for yarn and fiber related goodies, Alan will be sitting in his new fold-up chair watching herding dogs herd. We are all keeping our fingers crossed that the rain stays far away. I think there is something like a 40% chance. In preparation for the festival I have been trying my best to knit and spin as much of the yarn and fiber that I have managed to stash since learning to spin a year and half ago. I'm happy to say that I finished spinning my last bag of fiber last weekend and plyed it the other day. It turned out pretty well. Not the softest stuff I've made, but it feels like it would be durable.

 Over the past few weeks I also finished up a pair a of "Rainbow Bright" socks 
and the Breaking Waves shawl.
 Since the weather has been so nice the dog and I have been enjoying spending time on the deck.
I did get my first mosquito bite of the season though, right on my ankle which gave me a few fits during my Yoga class yesterday. I really don't like bugs.

Here is my finished Pagona shawl. I really enjoyed knitting this and can't wait to start on another one. In the picture above I had just finished binding off, so that's why the edges are all curled up. It needs to be blocked and I am going to do that with my brand new blocking wires that I received for Mother's Day
 I have no idea how these things work, but I can't wait to give them a try.
Hope you are excited about your weekend plans. Enjoy!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Happy Mother's Day (a little late)

 Hope you all had a lovely weekend. Ours was full of getting it done kind of projects. The weather was fairly cooperative, a little on the chilly side, but sometimes you just can't wait for perfect can you?
Speaking of perfect, are these not the most beautiful flowers ever?
Our wonderful friends and neighbors from Iowa, Barb and Jorge gave us a rooted clipping form their plant the year we moved to Kentucky. A little piece of them if you will. In all honesty, Jorge did tell us that it would take a while to reach maturity and bloom, but who knew that he was talking about 3 years....
 Obviously it was well worth the wait and I am not complaining at all. Really, I'm not. 
He says that they "might" bloom again in late summer so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. 
In case you think you might need to plant one of your own, all I can tell you is that it is some kind of Clematis. Not very helpful I know.
 Some of our weekend jobs included, major yard work, trimming, weeding and planting the vegetable garden, or as Alan likes to call it "putting out squirrel food". He is right though. We have a definite squirrel issue. Last year they ate all of my squash and a good many tomatoes. I considered not planting any vegetables at all this year and just sticking with herbs and flowers, but what fun is that? I'm sure that this will be the year my little garden puts out a bumper crop of everything.... I'll keep you posted.
We also spent a bit of time cleaning our cars inside and out. The pollen has finally stopped falling from the sky and it was time to get it off and out of my car.
I did a bit of sewing, knitting and spinning, but what else is new? 
I'll show you some of my finished projects later in the week. 
Today it's only going to get up to 67 degrees, but the sun is out and the sky is blue so I'll take it.
Tomorrow and through the rest of the week we will be in the 80's.
Good bye spring, Hello summer.
Because it's almost summer I stopped and got my first iced coffee of the year.
So, so good. I can see many more to come in the very near future.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

How We Did Derby

The Kentucky Derby has come and gone and things are getting back to normal around here. In case you didn't hear, Orb was the big winner. Sadly none of us were big winners. Our actual Derby day was much less exciting than we had planned on, but we managed to watch over 8 hours of horse racing on TV while drinking the non traditional Mojito out of the official  Mint Julep glass for this years race. I just can't drink the Juleps. They taste too much like medicine
 We snacked on sugar cookies shaped like horse.
 And Grace and I enjoyed the very traditional Hot Brown and a slice of Derby Pie.
The weather around here seems to be improving. It is about 10 degrees warmer today than it was yesterday, but those crazy forecasters are predicting more rain for the weekend.
Let me just tell you how happy that makes me....
Hope you had a great Derby weekend and are making fun plans for summer.