Thursday, July 30, 2015

A Week Home

Finally, I am settled back in to the home routine.  I think my body has returned to Pacific time zone.  It hasn't been an exciting week of travel, but I love those quiet weeks of routine and pursuing the activities I love best.  Here is Willow's Week in Friday Fave Fives with Susanne.

1. Two days of weaving.  I spent a couple of days at my friend's home working on another rag rug like the one I wove this week last year.  The reason I know it was this week is because facebook told me so.  I wove the rug and later when the rest of the warp is used up, my friend will remove it, bind the edges and give me my rug.

2. This friend is one who challenges my thinking and I enjoy spending time with her, so the weaving was a win-win.  When I moved here, people kept telling me, "You need to meet ....... because you both love fiber arts."  We have so much more in common that it's a joy to hang out with her.

3. I finished the pink socks!  Again, these are not destined for my feet.  They're a gift.

4. I have been watching dvds at home for training I need to do for work this fall. I am learning and being reminded of important things to remember about teaching writing.  Fortunately, the speaker on the dvds is thoroughly entertaining, so I'm not bored.

5. And while I'm watching the dvds, I can spin some wool on my wheel.  Another win-win!  I love having the summer to more leisurely move through my days and do the things I love.

Friday, July 24, 2015

There and Back Again, Again

I've been gone traveling.  Again.  Summer is like that for teachers.  We take advantage of those weeks off during the summer to wander around.  This time, we flew east to visit our girls and their families.  I'm so thankful for two weeks of grandchildren and adventures!  Linking with Susanne's Friday Fave Fives.

1.  But first, the knitting--
I finished two projects, one just before we left

afghan knitted in seed stitch
and one just before we returned.

Mara Shawl in grey

I also almost finished a pair of socks--photos when they're done.

2.  A visit to our nation's capital, Washington, D.C.

3.  The best part was the Library of Congress!

Did you know that you can FOR FREE receive a Library of Congress reading card??!!  The card gives you complete and total access to all of the library's contents for two years.  Yes, we got one.  :)

4.  In all our travels around the world and the US, we have never actually put our feet into  the Atlantic Ocean.   We've been in all the eastern seaboard states, swum in the Caribbean and the Pacific Ocean, but not the Atlantic.  On this trip, we accomplished this milestone in Delaware.  (photo compliments of Daughter #2.

5.  We love playing outdoors with the littles and their parents.  On the east coast, it's so very different--trees, trees, green, and water.

There are so many more photos and adventures.  I just hit the highlights.  Over the weekend, I hope to finish up the picture downloads and post my favorites.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Oh, Say, Can You See?

Independence Day is past, and we in the US have reflected on our patriotism and saluted the flag and sung The Star Spangled Banner.  But do you know the story behind our national anthem?

It all started with a battle in 1814 when British ships were bombarding Ft. McHenry in Baltimore, Maryland.  Francis Scott Key was an American lawyer who was on an England ship and watched overnight, wondering if when morning arrived whether the American flag or the British flag would be raised over the fort.  Imagine his relief and thankfulness when he realized that it was the American flag which flew that morning.  Here is a link to more information about his life and how he came to write these words which eventually became our national anthem.

The Star-Spangled Banner

O say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight
O’er the ramparts we watch’d were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket’s red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there,
O say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?
On the shore dimly seen through the mists of the deep
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream,
’Tis the star-spangled banner - O long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
And where is that band who so vauntingly swore,
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion
A home and a Country should leave us no more?
Their blood has wash’d out their foul footstep’s pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave,
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.
O thus be it ever when freemen shall stand
Between their lov’d home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with vict’ry and peace may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the power that hath made and preserv’d us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto - “In God is our trust,”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.
Ft. McHenry is an interesting place to visit.  There were displays inside various buildings and lots of  walkways and bunkers to explore.

Little ones love to run around old forts and see the buildings and ramparts and cannons.

"There was a JAIL here???"

Key Bridge seen from Ft. McHenry

Saturday, July 11, 2015

We Are Wild Travelers

One would think that we had already done enough traveling for a summer.  Evidently not.  Here we are on the East Coast of the US.  Three of our grandchildren live out here, so obviously, it's a travel destination.

The flora and fauna are different here (and yet strangely familiar).

Fortunately, the grandchildren love to be outdoors, hiking, playing in the water.

Young naturalists

Sometimes, they're just silly.

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Cutest. Baby. Ever. Hyperbole? Or Simple Statement of Fact?

If you are anti-baby or just bored by cute baby pictures, then this isn't the post for you.  But, it's just what my Friday Fave Fives are about this week--our adorable granddaughter.

1.  She came to visit this past week from Phoenix so we had ample opportunities to enjoy her sweet and joyful personality.  She truly is a happy and content child who wakes up from naps with a smile ready to play.

2.  Believe it or not, although we have lived for a long time in Southern California, we had never visited Santa Barbara Zoo.  So we took our PAL and her parents and auntie there on Saturday.

watching the elephants

3.  A visit to Meema and Bapa isn't complete without including books--here she is at our local independent book shop, Mrs. Fig's Book Worm.

4.  Then we made sure she had a chance to see the children's section at the university library.  Oh, and the sweetest thing happened--the librarian who of course is acquainted with The Professor--gifted PAL two children's books, one of them signed by the author!  Two books to treasure.

5.  OK, so I can't fill up the whole week with just photos of our PAL.  What other blessings were evident in my week?  I've spent time in my garden which I always love.  No photos because, well, gardens in Southern California these days are dry and sad.  Mostly I pulled weeds and clipped back dried up poppy plants.  But my lavender bush has produced some lovely blooms which I shared with two neighbors, both of whom were delighted with the fragrant bouquets.  I've finished a book--Three Weavers by Joan  Potter Loveless.  This is a biography/autobiography about three women who met and became friends in Taos, New Mexico and were drawn together by their love of weaving.  The setting (Taos), the topics (weaving, spinning, family) and the writing style made me want to revisit Taos (could I LIVE there?) and  pull out my spinning wheel and set up a tapestry loom.  Also, I've completed some knitting projects--must document and photograph them-- another shawl and an afghan.

So, that was Willow's Week.  How have you been?