Saturday, December 17, 2011

The end of an era...

Our starter home...And our finisher home!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hitchcock Movie Re-Make Auditions?

I heard the commotion from inside the house.

They were congregating a few houses down the block behind us.

For what, do you suppose?

(The movie appears very small on the blog. Sorry. Wish you could have seen what I saw! Check out the space between the tree branches. Those chatty birds were party-ing over there!)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

I hesitate to tell you this...

So, yesterday, kind of early - like maybe 6:30amish - I'm walking back into the bedroom with a cup of coffee and no glasses, and I see something in the carpet that I leaned over to inspect. And it moved. Well, really more slithered. I screamed. Rudy hid behind the coffee table.

We had a snake in the house.

Not a big snake. But no earthworm size, either. About 6 or 7 inches. No markings to indicate venom. But a snake.

After I screamed I tried to shoo it off the carpet onto the tile. Where, surprisingly to me, it had trouble slithering.  Rudy was still hiding behind the coffee table.  I captured it under a glass pot lid. And then contemplated.

I didn't want to get close enough to kill it. In my house. But the thought of letting it go kind of freaked me out, too. It came in once, after all. Did it have plans to winter in my bedroom? But, if I were to put it out of my misery, how might I do that? The shot gun seemed over-kill. (Most likely it would result in the loss of one of my toes IF I could even get the thing loaded. Which would require knowing where the ammo is and which ammo is actually  correct for which firearm?) Beating it to death with one of Cuddle Buns shoes wouldn't work for me. Knives weren't an option, either.

So, I let him go. Scootched him onto a newspaper and on out the back door where he high-tailed it into the grass.

I sure hope he decided to check out the next door neighbors'.

Rudy FINALLY came out from his hiding place behind the GLASS coffee table. Took him a long while to leave the rug, though. He never once saw the snake. Me screaming and jumping around with glass pot lids was enough to send him over the edge.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

What we've been doing, in no particular order

Due to my lengthy hiatus, I can't tell you in any good order what is going on in our world. It is just going!

  • Rudy had his two year check up. It's official. He's still the cutest pup at the vet. On the block. At Petco. 
  • There are other parts of this country, before our recent amazing cold front, that not only have rain, but cooler temps. On a regular basis. They even wear jackets and sweaters. 
  • Speaking of jackets and sweaters... Since it has dipped into the 80s here during the day, I know many people think it is COLD. It is not, folks. No real need for sweaters yet. I promise. You'll be fine. I don't get the coat sitings I've had. My body temp still hasn't lowered to normal from September!
  • I do hope it stays on the cooler side with maybe even cooler temps coming. I'm knitting a great looking sweater. I don't want to have to travel to wear it.
  • The For Sale sign is in our yard again. We tried to sell this place three years ago. Then Ike hit. Thent the housing crash hit. Now three years worth of accumulated junk later, we're going to give it a whirl again. 
  • My daughter and her family are again living on this continent. Only a one hour time difference to mess with when calling. (They are in one of the places with cooler weather. 48 yesterday. With rain. Can you imagine. Yes....I'd give you permission to wear a coat.) I've made a visit already. I wore a sweater a couple of times. That was almost as great as hugging the necks and swatting the butts of those boys I've not seen since March. 
  • But really, this is what we've been doing the most:

    Friday, August 5, 2011

    Who do you think was in charge: Bonnie or Clyde?

    This is Hobbit. Hobbit has made her appearance here before. She is spending the week with us while her human mom and dad are off galavanting.

    Hobbit is a mild mannered little lady whose tail wags in a circle. Remember? Although I haven't seen that circular wag too much this week. She's wagging, but it is hot and we're all a bit droopy.

    The following pictures may be too much to bear. You might want to preview them before letting knitters or fiber artists in your family view them.

    This is the scene of the Great Fiber Massacre:

    It seems that during the wee hours of Tuesday morning, my fiber basket was attacked. Where was I? Sleeping. Cuddle Buns, under my direct orders, had let Hobbit out of her sleeping crate when he got up. I swear Rudy was still in bed with me. And Cuddle Buns was deeply involved in the morning news. Didn't he hear anything? Why, no. Of course not. 
    Does he need a hearing aid? Yes. Yes he does. But that is for another post.

    I wanted to blame Hobbit for this mess, which really only resulted in the destruction of one (although new) drop spindle. (I haven't gone all CSI and measured the teeth marks. Yet.)

    I wanted to blame her, because Rudy has never, ever, done anything like that (except for that one shoe incident last July). I want to think that on any old given day my fiber is safe.

    So....when I grilled spoke with Cuddle Buns after he had gone to work, I wanted him to tell me that our houseguest had gone a little nuts with the freedom. Had overstepped her boundaries as a house guest.

    But no. 

    It appears Hobbit had an accomplice. 
    Maybe even an instigator.

    Maybe was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    I'm sorry, Hobbit, for blaming you. 

    Tuesday, July 26, 2011

    Hiding Out

    Yes. We're still here. Just trying to stay cool and keeping a low profile.

    Wednesday, June 22, 2011

    All Kinds of Weirdness

    This morning Rudy seemed a little confused.

    I can tell by the ears.

    He didn't burn his little paws on the cement.

    Mommy actually sat outside with him for a bit without melting.

    There were clouds. From the NORTH!

    And then this strange WONDERFUL stuff started falling from the sky.

    Wonderfully weird. 

    Tuesday, June 7, 2011

    She's Come Home!!

    Finally. My little car is back home and whole. I was beginning to despair of ever having a car at my disposal again! She is beautiful!

    Thursday, May 26, 2011

    Rudy's New Playground

    Our new playground:

    We have just settle on a price for this awesome playground for the three of us (and anyone who wants to come stay with us!) and are absolutely giddy. All prayers for an easy closing welcome!

    Yes....that is a pecan orchard. The view is from the soon-to-be-ours back porch/deck/favorite place.

    Wednesday, May 25, 2011

    Til Death Do Us Part

    Thirty seven years ago today at this time I was still asleep. No sinus junk to keep me awake. I had just finished my final exams the day before to end my junior year at Iowa State University. GO CLONES! I'm sure Cuddle Buns was still asleep as well. Rudy was just a twinkle in his daddy's eyes as were our two real children.

    By the end of the day we were:

    Mr. and Mrs. Mike Burke

    And they lived happily ever after....

    In bigger sizes with shorter hair....

    Thursday, May 19, 2011

    Play Dates All Around

    My friend Carla wanted to take a road trip to Container Store. I'm always up for Container Store, but since she just had knee replacement surgery, didn't think she'd be comfy in my little rent-an-egg. (Car still not ready.) So, I drove her car. She came to get me, and we decided to take Rudy over for a play date with her Hobbit. (Hobbit spent the weekend awhile back, remember?)
    They had great fun and immediately ran upstairs to watch us leave. I thought Rudy was a little distraught. Until I looked more closely at the pict.

    He wasn't even looking at me. Probably not at all concerned about my leaving. Just giddy with a new window and stuff to bark at. With Hobbit by his side staring mournfully at his mom leaving. Man. Know where I stand now.

    Friday, April 29, 2011

    Gramma's Training Camp

    The Grand Princess and her new little friend from next door were sitting in the garage playing with play dough and eating fist sticks. (Gramma is a gourmet cook, isn't she?) (The awesome weather with NO HUMIDITY, thank you very much, allows this outdoor, Paris-cafe type setting. It will be back in the AC within days, I'm sure.)

    I have had a few things out in the garage the last few days while I have played around with dying some  alpaca and some silk. This was hanging in the garage, fluffing and drying:

    Our new little curious but uneducated friend asks, "What is THAT?"

    The Grand Princess, with more than a touch of disdain in her voice and a little "boy, are you stupid!" added in rolls her eyes, looks at him and says:

    "It's FIBER!"

    (This reminds me of a few nights ago when I voice concern to Cuddle Buns that the prayer shawl I was working on wasn't very big. He naturally replies that it will be bigger once I block it. Am I training these people here well, or what??)

    Thursday, April 28, 2011

    Totally bummed...

    It doesn't look totaled, does it? But the insurance guys says it is. (Air bags---seems to be the key determining factor.) So, just like that, my great little car is gone. 

    Plus, the coffee pot quit working today. Had to run some boiling water through the filter part just to hold me over.

    Thursday, April 14, 2011


    This is my house. I grew up here. (There is no snow around it right now!)  It was a mess when we moved in. Dad re-did it. I remember him making the paneling. Painting it. Installing a wood burning stove that saved us one winter when the power was out. It wasn't finished even when I went to college. But it was livable and memorable. And I loved it.

    I wish I had pictures of Vern and Coila's. It was a supper club on the lake. Dad did much construction there. But he also played the drums with the Ralph Easton Trio on the weekends. I remember Dad in his tux. 

    I remember him when I smell sawdust. Hear Lawrence Welk. Or drum solos. Or pass a golf course, a past time he took up in his 60s. This week, we have received many notes or comments about how "We used to dance to Benny's music every weekend", or "Benny made our cabinets (or tables or bookcases or whatever)". I am sure there are many people in Spencer who have kitchen cabinets made by my dad who don't even know the care and artistry he put into them. But I do know they are level and square. And beautiful. 

    We remembered dad this week. He passed just a few weeks shy of his 90th birthday. I got to be with him which I thought would be really hard, but ended up being a wonderful blessing. He had everything planned, ready, and paid for with the funeral home. I held it together through the service until our final song. It hasn't left my brain since.

    Wednesday, March 9, 2011

    What I've been doing....

    • I have seen nearly every episode from the first three seasons of Gilligan's Island. Or at least listened to them. (Did you know that Gilligan was always in trouble? But the professor was, at least half the time, responsible for the mix-ups? And, there is no way The Minnow could have carried all of Mrs. Howell's hats. Mary Ann even had more of a wardrobe than could have been carried by that tiny ship.) (Were there only three seasons? )
    • I have been involved in a two week long game of The Cheese Touch. (Think "cooties".) (Or go see "Diary of a Whimpy Kid".)
    • I have had the Star Wars theme buzzing in my head off and on, even while asleep. I've also had Star Wars weaponry and artillery lessons. Complete with sound effects.
    • I have been beaten in Monopoly, Money Bags, and Connect Four. Regularly. I did win a hand of Uno. Once.
    • I have had my breath taken away by the scenery.

    • I've purchased hand painted Easter eggs and cowbells. And YARN!
    • I've watched ski lessons. In amazement.
    We call him Pizza
    We call him French Fries

    • I've witnessed Harry Potter and a vampire participate in Fasching. (Think Mardi Gras - German style.)
    • I have missed Cuddle Buns and Rudy like crazy, but don't want to leave this place! 

    Friday, February 18, 2011

    Living Room Decor

    These guys make me giggle.
    Bolt and Rhino for those deprived of you who don't know. They are living on one of our living room chairs. I put them there. Bolt belongs to the Grand Princess. Rhino is mine. 

    This is on another living room chair:

    And on the fireplace:

    I'm so glad The GP is into dogs. 

    Saturday, February 5, 2011

    Pretty in pink but secure in his manhood...

    Or boyhood.

    Or maybe he is just oblivious.

    Regardless, we both were quite happy we got to play in the snow.

    Tuesday, January 25, 2011


    Rudy had a weekend Guest. Hobbit came for a visit.

    Hobbit is a girl. I don't know why I couldn't get that through my skull. Perhaps it is because the book is called THE Hobbit that I assumed anyone with that name must be male. But there had to be female Hobbits. Otherwise, there wouldn't be any NEW Hobbits, right? And besides, who would take care of the house?

    Anyway, Hobbit and Rudy had a great time. And Hobbit put up with the Grand Princess with all kinds of tail wags. (Her tail wags in a circle. Both directions! It was hysterical.) And at nap time, the GP had a dog on either side to guard her.

    Friday, January 14, 2011

    Gramma's Daycare Center

    We do have a reading center as well. It is in a darkened room with our new book Rapunzel and our new Princess Book Light. Compliments of Aunt Carrie. 

    Thursday, January 6, 2011

    We've been away...

    Nothing like stating the obvious. The cool thing is that Rudy and I have been on a retreat. It was glorious.

    We went to the ranch to take care of this guy, Rudy's cousin Copper, and Rudy's feline cousins, who don't like to be photographed.

    We were there for about a week taking walks a couple of times each day...

    Knitting and spinning. Well, I was. Constantly. I finished this sweater for my sister:

    These slippers for a friend:

    One of these mittens from yarn I  made myself:

    A pair of slippers for my sister that I haven't photographed and some spun gold yarn that is waiting for it's photo shoot as well. (Not real gold, mind you. Golden in color. Burnt orangey.)

    Rudy was unimpressed.

    His favorite thing was BOUNDING.

    It was hard to get a good shot. His bounding is very fast. My sister calls him a kagaroo. I've shortened his name to ROO. And we were on a Hundred Acres. Get it?


    It was glorious.