Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Avoidance, avoidance

I don't feel like doing much of anything. So, tonight will be laundry and knitting or reading or napping. Yay! And...just because I can report....napping won. Practically the minute I hit the couch I was asleep. I'd rouse to turn the volume down on the tv but not enough to get up and go to bed. Sleep is sleep, right?

Blossom Photo of the Week: Lilac

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Done In

Saturday was the Spring Ring at church hosted by our bell choir. Up early, ring all day, dinner out, fun with bells, fun with family.

Sunday was church, help put up my evaporative cooler, go on a wildflower drive and photo taking spree with my brother and sister-in-law.

Now I'm staying up too late! Will finish and hit the hay.

Friday, March 27, 2009

End of the week

I'm so glad it's Friday but I wish I had more energy. Tomorrow is the Spring Ring at our church hosted by our bell choir. I missed set up tonight-just don't feel well. I'm hoping for a little more energy tomorrow.

I finished a scarf with a "ladder" yarn. It is so light. My sil says they're like a necklace and she's right! This one will be a door prize tomorrow.

Current photos of the iris did not turn out so well. I don't think they like being spray watered. The apricot tree looks happy, though.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Long, Long Day

Current IEP tally: One down-two weeks late (NOT MY FAULT!), two IEPs, two intials, and one amendment meeting. Goal: finish them all before spring break. And then, maybe sleep for a couple days.

Today's meeting was a bit challenging. The family moved and didn't tell the school. Neither did they give a working phone number. Many, many people have worked hard to find the family. I finally today stayed until 5:30 to waylay the mom picking her son up from the afterschool program. She was surprised but agreeable to going over the paperwork. At 15 minutes it was one of my fastest meetings. whew.

I wouldn't call this Photo of the Day material but it is the prettiest thing in my yard right now. Just a foot or so over are a half dozen more a few days from blooming. I like the two shades of purple and the white fuzzy "beards".

I'm looking forward to Mom's grave marker being completed and installed. I'm hoping by Easter. It will be her final earthly Alleluia! He is Risen! Well, ok, not final, it will greet anyone who stops and reads it. I'm also thinking that having used this traditional Easter greeting I might feel a bit more sad than I might have as Holy Week progresses and Easter Sunday approaches. We shall see.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Knitting projects update

This is a knitting rake. It's about 22 inches long. I'm knitting single knit going up one side and down the other. The fabric looks like it's going to be about 28 inches wide. I was thinking it would be a nice shawl but the knit fabric is more blanket like. It may end up a lap blanket. The brown section is in garter stitch. The new white section is being done in seed stitch. The 3rd color is a light strawberry pink. When it's finished it should look like neapolitan ice cream.

This is my infinity or "S" loom that my brother gave me for Christmas. The last photo of this had about 3 inches of fabric showing. It has about 12 inches now and I just started my 2nd skein of yarn. The loom is about 18 inches in length. The fabric should be about 36 inches wide. I'm hoping to make 4 panels and then sew them together to make a bed-sized afghan.

And this is a flower loom that I'm using to make a scarf with ribbon yarn. It's not in any way to keep you warm, more of an accessory. I'm hoping to make a dozen of these for next winter's bell choir fundraiser. My sister-in-law uses a ladder yarn. I think they come out so much nicer with that yarn. I haven't been able to find any locally so I thought I'd try it with the ribbon yarn to see what I get.

And, yes, I have three projects going at once. I didn't used to do that but I found both the afghan looms a bit frustrating. Now I also keep a simple hat or scarf going.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Ok, who dropped the hat?

Friday afternoon I approved the stonemason's proof of Mom's grave marker. I wasn't dreading going to the cemetery. So, suprised me again, I'm a bit weepy driving in. Pulled myself together, did what I had to do, walked out weepier than all get out. I've always cried easily but could control it. No more. I wonder how long this lasts?

Today's pleasant surprise is that two of the three lilacs are blooming. Of course, that darned macro problem is still with me where I manage to have the background perfectly in focus and a blurry blossom. Phooey. I did get one shot.

A second pleasant surprise is from the apricot tree. There are a few blossoms left in the midst of the green. It's such a nice change from the mayhem of sticks photos.

And, the little apricot below has a friend!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Apricots, 3 months and counting

Ready, set! That lovely, hardworking tree is on the way to yielding fruit again.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Purple is Spring

I can see the light at the end of the IEP tunnel. These IEPs have been flying past as if I'm looking out the window of a fast moving train. I have two, count them, please, two left for this year. This does not count the two that are not really my responsibility. The SLP I'm covering for will be back TUESDAY of next week. Yippee! I love doing her job but I feel guilty that the kids in my class have been shorted my time. I won't make her finish the two that I've started but since she'll be back she can make caseload decisions.

I called the cemetary and checked on the marker this afternoon. I think they forgot to send it after C and I were there two Saturdays ago. The call back was that they had faxed the request to the stonemason and he should have the proof back tomorrow. Hmm, they did not say when they faxed it. I'm gonna guess a few minutes after my call. Hopefully I'll know tomorrow if the stonemason will do the design we've chosen.

Early spring is warming into true spring. Most of the fruit trees are losing their blooms. The ornamentals are mostly finished, too. I bought flowers for one of my front porch pots. And, I have Iris!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Very Musical

It's been a musical and churchy weekend. Saturday was the Sr. Choir's 1 day "get ready for Holy Week and Easter" sing-a-thon. It didn't feel too long. We learned some new pieces and put a little polish on some old favorites. We started at 8:45 a.m. and went until 2 p.m with lunch and couple breaks.

I still don't know where to be for Easter Sunday. I usually go to my sister's home but now that I don't have Mom I have too many choices. I'm leaning hard toward staying here. I have a feeling that will make Holy Week and Easter a cry-fest. I reserve the right to lean somewhere else if it gets overwhelming. Mom and I counted Palm Sunday as the anniversary of her moving in day.

Another friend's father passed away this weekend. I didn't know him but I'm sad for her and her family.

Today has been a bit on the crazy side church musician-wise. The friend above is our choir accompianist and fellow alto. Since she couldn't be with us this morning the director became the accompianst and another talented choir member became the director. (It is what he does for a living. We're blessed he chooses to sing with us. It helps that he grew up here!)

It actually started last night. We have a Jr. High age bell ringer in our bell choir. He didn't show up for our scheduled ringing in church for Saturday service. We did find him but too late to include him. The choir director was already subbing for us so I gave up my bells and rang a different part so that we didn't have a "hole". Then on Sunday morning another ringer had a commitment at another church and couldn't stay to the end of 2nd service (which was running late). So we grabbed the vocal choir's substitute director and he played the part I had been playing and I went and rang another part. 3 subs...maybe we should have quit earlier in the service. And Yay! for that last fellow subbing in. He had never actually rang before. Had I known that I would have recommended asking his mom or dad, both have rung before and were present!

Workshop and 3 services made for a long weekend. I came home from church and slept for 3 hours! Now it's on to the ordinary tasks of taking care of the house and getting ready for the week. Oh, and get back to Wii!

Blossoms are fading but still pretty. The ornamental pear in my backyard is raining petals. It looks like a very light snow has fallen. I thought it would be more clear in the photo, oh well.

Today's Blossom Photo of the Day is from the branch of the neighbor's Nectarine peeking through the fence. I'm going to have to find a way to water that tree so I can have the fruit that will be growing on my side of the fence!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Grouse, grouse, grouse

I am decidedly tired of mailings from Hospice. They were with us for less that 4 weeks. I've gotten two requests to evaluate their services and countless invitations to group counseling for grief and loss. I don't mind that they ask, but they came less than twice/week average usually when I wasn't there. How am I supposed to evaluate that?

And, I got a bit snippy with the last phone call "checking up" on me. Poor intern. I told her I had already declined the counseling service and would appreciate being allowed to ask for counseling when and if I thought I needed it. No more phone calls but the cards keep coming. Usually 3 on the same day. That way they can invite my sister, too, who doesn't even live in their service area. Next blizt of cards will need a phone call to them to make it stop I think.

grouse, grouse, grouse.

Blossom Photo of the Day: Nectarine Blossoms peeking over and through the fence.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Something different

A camellia from my backyard. I don't tend it, feed, pay it any mind. And yet.....pinkness!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


I am so looking forward to the next two weeks being finished. Once again I have IEPs or staff meetings almost everyday this week. On Thursday both! I'm not planning on making the staff meeting. ;*P

We had an eventful weekend. Sister C found my favorite study Bible that I had misplaced. We both worked the choir's e-recycling event. She found my kitchen while I went to Bible class-Yay! We ate out twice, church, naps. C set up the Wii! Then we laughed really hard trying to do the Wii play games.

On Monday I remembered that playing the big bells (5th octave, Shulmerich handbells) is exhausting. What a workout! I'm thinking I should focus on the strength training games in the Wii. How did I forget? I seem to be the rehearsal sub. If someone else in bell choir is absent it often helps to fill in the missing part for a length of time. Monday was the first time in 4 weeks that I've played my part. And a lovely part it is.

These are the blooms from a little aloe plant living in a little pot outside the front door:
Blossom Photo of the day:

I've been having trouble taking photos of the apricot blossoms using the macro setting. The camera likes to focus on the background or the twigs. The little barely opening blossom on the bottom is one of the best photos recently.

I'm glad Mom's faith is not only reflected in her grave marker but in her life markers. She raised 4 children in faith who are raising 4 grandchildren. Countless more family, friends, and co-workers mark her life.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Photo for post below

How long?

I'm quite surprised that I haven't posted since Tuesday. Tuesday? Well, maybe not so surprised. It was a very busy week and I came home and did nothing most nights. But, Tuesday? Hmm. I've had my sister here all weekend. Wonderful company. We did go to the cemetary and select the design and what we wanted for Mom's marker. We've all agreed on He is Risen! Alleluia!, then her name and the dates. And the design, if the stonemason still uses the pattern will be roses. I was surprised that it came together.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Mayhem of Branches

After dozens of photos of the purple leaf plum and apricot tree I'm deciding that I'm feeling like the apricot tree looks. It's still a mayhem of stick-like branches rather than a profusion of blossoms or a covering of newly budded leaves. Most of my apricot photos are taken in the early evening so many of them are greyish except for the sparse scattering of pink and white blossoms.

There is beauty in my day to day. There are blossoms of friends at every turn. But, I'm more like the mayhem of stick-like branches of the apricot tree than the profusion of pink blooms on the purple leaf.

And, because there is joy in blossoms, the blossom photo of the day:

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Blooming on an Old Distressed Tree

It's a wonder to me that the Apricot Tree is blossoming this year. I thought there would be only a few but now there are dozens. If that tree isn't careful there will be a profusion. It's always been a good producer.

So why, if an apricot tree can be witness to God's glory when it seems old and ill can not also a person. She can, mom was.

Today in church the topic was suffer well. The point was that we know suffering of one kind or another will come-prepare for it. In Bible class we wondered what that might look like and decided that remaining in God's Word, holding steadfast in prayer, and continuing in fellowship were the tools we had to be prepared.

In in the end our sufferings are nothing compared to the final goal of our Salvation. God is but using difficult times to bring us closer to him.

Quite a morning.