Tuesday, July 26, 2011

New and Old

A couple new things going on--I have cast on for Catherine Socks by Kate Blackburn and am knitting along on a 9 inch circular.  I had no idea I could knit socks on teeny-tiny circulars but thanks to SusanB of Seduced By Yarn blog I have learned a new and enjoyable method.  Thanks Susan!!  Instead of using the interesting heel as written in the pattern I have decided to try Cat Bordhi's new Sweet Tomato Sock Heel.  You can find a tutorial for the heel here on YouTube or you can buy a book of patterns using the heel on Cat's website.  
It seems like long, long ago that I started the one piece cardigan called Corinne.  I believe I can see the end in sight but I have to say that I have reached the point of screaming from boredom.  As close as I am to being finished (15 more pattern repeats) I sometimes feel that I can't knit another row on Corinne.  It will be beautiful when finished and I think it will be one of my favorites but--I will never knit another one piece sweater!!
To reduce the chance of falling asleep from boredom I cast on for Pretty In Pink by Josee Paquin.  I love the design of this cardigan/wrap.  Thanks Josee for sheer genius!  I found it on Ravelry and ordered the yarn from Elann the same day.  I'm using Grignasco Merinogold in the Tiffany Glass colorway and let me tell you, I want more of this yarn!  It is so soft and easy to knit, and the colors are gorgeous.  It reminds me of Debbie Bliss Rialto.  I decided that a long scarf would be a nice touch for the cardigan and went back to order more of the Tiffany Glass.  It was gone!  It was gone everywhere!  Finally I found several skeins on eBay and was able to order them but I'm afraid that yarn is like people--only the good die young.  

Hope it's cool where you are!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Stuff Happens

Kathyb asked me to share what I did when disaster struck and I lost my wallet and had an unknown person attempt to use the credit cards AND my identification.   When our identity is in question the fight or flight response sets in.  Let me tell you--you fight or you lose!  I spent an hour or so crying, a half hour ranting and raving and then grabbed pen, paper and phone to start the calling process, all while on vacation.

1.  I made a list of everything in the wallet.  I say wallet but mine was actually a Coach clutch outfitted with slots for credit cards  and identification and plenty of room for other things (I even carried dog biscuits in it).  Because it was larger It contained most of my life--driver's license, Social Security card, insurance cards, credit cards, incidental cards like Costco and Sam's Club (important stuff), money, and normally my phone and checkbook.  When I got out of the RV with the clutch, DS#3 was using my phone because his was charging and DH had the checkbook in his shirt pocket--small miracles!!

2.  I prioritized the list and immediately started calling to report the credit cards missing.  Fortunately, for travel purposes, I had listed the numbers for the CC companies in my phone contacts and didn't have to search for them.  It was then that I discovered that in less than 4 hours someone had tried to use one of my credit cards.  The charge was refused because the ID didn't match (attempt to use card by unauthorized user).  How many times have you used your credit card lately and they didn't ask to see additional identification?  God bless the sales clerk who asked to see identification!!

3.  Social Security and driver's license are a given.  I reported them stolen and had them replaced online.  You can go into DMV and the SSA offices but most states allow you to do this online.  

4.  Finally, I can't find the words to tell you how important it is that you find a service that will protect your identity.  There are many!  One that I have had experience with in the past, when a family member had her purse snatched, is LifeLock.  Others are ProtectMyID and Identity Guard.  Our bank has their own service which works the same and tracks both credit charges and check purchases as well as credit inquiries and any use of my identification for financial purposes.  Whatever the cost it is worth it!!  At least for a year or two.

I'm sure I left out a dozen things because the whole process seemed to take up the whole vacation.  Calling insurance companies and everyday people like Costco, Sam's, Staples, Exxon, pharmacies etc. is enough to keep you busy for a week--or more.  We are still remembering things I had in that wallet.  It is a scary time!  Something I never want to have happen again!! 
I have a new wallet/clutch.  See that wrist strap?  I'm hanging on to that puppy!!  Through it all I can honestly say...life is good.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Gift From A Friend

What a happy day!  I received a gift from friend Kathyb of Irisheyes Knitting Blog for being the 8000th person to comment on her posts.  The gift is beautiful note cards and you can imagine how delighted I was when I saw the cute little Jack Russell Terrier on the front of the cards.  The drawing looked just like my sweet Macy so I had to take a pen and write her name on each card.  She would have insisted anyway!!  I can't wait to use them.  (The cards are from an Etsy store called The Painted Peep Show).

Thank you, thank you Kathy!  You are a sweetheart and I consider myself blessed to be one of your pretend friends.  (Macy thanks you too, for acknowledging her exalted place in my life).

Kathy has also asked me to share my story of what to do when your wallet/purse is lost or stolen.  I will post that tomorrow and hope you all agree that it is important to think about these things before they happen.  I didn't and had to hit the ground running!  Till then....

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

A Half Dozen Reasons To Shed Tears While On Vacation

                                                                   My next sweater

It was the best of times it was the worst of times...I've always wanted to have reason to use that lead-in and this is it.  I can state with certainty that a grandson's wedding is the best but I can't deny that losing my wallet is the worst.
#1 - Can a wedding be anything other than beautiful?  My sweet grandson and his beautiful bride had a simple, outdoor wedding with trees swaying in the breeze, gauze drapes blowing around the pergola, and flower scents sweetly wafting on the air.  The thick grass carpet was strewn with rose petals and the bride's gown and upswept hair were enough to make even the groom shed tears.  How's that for a reason to get teary?

#2 - An hour and fifteen minutes out of Chicago I apparently left my wallet/clutch at a truck stop, and didn't notice it was missing until the next day.  The tears were flowing, not just from my eyes but DD and DH were looking misty-eyed as well.  There were credit cards, money a bunch of money, drivers license, Social Security Card, insurance cards, and other things like medication and keys.  The only thing that usually resides in that clutch that was missing was my phone.  I still have my phone.  After two days of cancelling credit cards, dealing with identification, refilling prescriptions and copying keys, my final thought on the situation was, "I wish someone would just give me back my Coach clutch!!  I cried again!

#3 - Visiting with grandchildren who we do not see regularly (they are good about communicating though) is a tear worthy event!  They are growing and changing in such a beautiful way and we are so proud of the people they are becoming that the tears just flow freely when they are around.  I want more of them--more of their smiles and hugs and faces and voices!  Leaving them is like tearing my heart out.

#4 - Having grown children say, "We want to travel with you because we don't get to spend enough time with you," then having them make all the arrangements and thoroughly enjoy the trip (and Mom and Dad) is enough to make a mother cry big tears of joy and love.

#5 - Realizing that time (and aging) has made traveling a tiring event requires acceptance that does not come without tears.  I'm not old mind you, but getting in and out of a big RV, loading and unloading, packing and unpacking and repacking--well, if you are over 40 it is tiring!  I'm over 40.  It makes me feel like crying to realize that long trips are not the adventure they used to be.

#6 - Leaving.  Coming home.  Going away from loved ones knowing you will not see them again for a while.  I can't seem to do it without tears.  We hugged each one and kissed each sweet face and every hug and kiss became a promise for the future.  When I think of that promise I get tears in my eyes, but life is good!!