I am old enough to think of Bill The Cat, when I write that title. Granted, that scroungy cat was attempting to hack up a fur ball, but for me, it was something different.

I have been quiet lately because I went down for the count, just bone weary and in need of extra sleep. The alarmists in my family were checking my symptoms and were afraid that I might have Covid. Uh, I have been with no one, other than family, without a mask and precautions, but still they pushed. It made me so damned nervous and upset, yesterday, that I went ahead and booked an appointment for this morning, to have the swab that goes down the throat (ACK!) and then down each nostril.

Kaiser has been stellar for the things that I have needed, this past week. Drive through flu shots and now this. They have a separate building, across from the Roseville hospital, that is designated for testing. I made my 9:05 am appointment and got right in, with no one else in line. I got ushered into the room with One Chair, by the sweet nurse, who was gowned and masked and told me what was going to happen, even counting down the seconds as she went up my nostrils. I had already gagged on her, with the throat thing and felt sorry for that. The test took all of 15 seconds and I was out of there. It is a 45 minute drive, each way, on a Sunday with no traffic. I am glad that I went but man, was I nervous!

After I gave in to the pestering, from Rod and our daughter, they suddenly found information that fit my symptoms of being cold and tired. Oh, yeah, withdrawal from that horrible Prednisone, which caused me to run on empty for three weeks, sleeping in two hour spurts and having my heart pound out of my chest all day long. Man, did I ever get a lot done but I hated that feeling of having had 20 cups of coffee. Now, I am back to feeling all of those aches and pains that accompany the aging process and the thinning of the shields around nerves. I now realize that I felt NONE of that, when I was on that stuff and as I eased off of it, I remembered the toe that bothers me, when I am trying to sleep. Haha! This reminds me of someone else, on the other side of the country, who has been high on “Dex” and feeling like Superman; there will come a time when it wears off and he will begin to feel crappy. OR, perhaps he will find a way to keep taking it. I don’t wish the withdrawal on anyone.

So, now we wait for a couple of days. I had no other symptoms. No fever, no cough, no shortness of breath, etc, etc, etc. Better safe than sorry, eh?

The sun is shining and the air is clear. I have orders to attend to and life goes on. PS, if you hear Rod yell, when I punch him in the arm, that means that I do not have it. He has been warned. ::wink::

Rude Noises

It started a couple of weeks ago, around the time that my beefsteak tomatoes started to take a hit. There were scratching and crunching noises that seemed to happen around my bedtime reading or TV time. I could hear it when I got up to pee, ONE LAST TIME, and it sounded like something was perhaps ravaging something in the garden, which is outside both the bedroom and bathroom. I could never SEE anything, of course, so chalked it up to critters outside. Then, one particularly heinous sleepless Prednisone Night, I heard the noises at around 5 am and tried to see outside, with the aid of my phone’s flashlight. Nada, nothing, zilch.

Two nights ago, probably zonked from my flu shot, I climbed into bed at about 8:30, only to hear scratching in the ceiling, OVER the TV. Got up, got the hubby, who until this night had thought that I must be Hearing Things. Of course, like a trip to the doctor, the noises stopped and He heard nothing. Fine. I flounced back into bed and started up the TV again. It must have been only about 30 minutes later when our little huntress, Zoe the Himalayan, grand killer of yarn balls, heard something and tried to climb the windows in the corner of the room. It was loud crunching and it was coming from the attic. He came back into the room to tell me something and HEARD THE THING. Finally! He promptly declared that We had to call the exterminator.

Well, the exterminator’s Rodent Expert came today. He checked the perimeters of the house, checked the attic, didn’t find droppings, wasn’t sure if it was a rat, although rats chew WOOD and squirrels chew acorns, so probably a rat, like the last time, several years ago. The snap traps in the attic were all still there, so he placed three fancy bait filled units around the outside of the house. I hate the idea of it but that plus Rod fixing the holes in the screen, where The Thing most likely entered and exited the attic, should take care of the problem. TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS.

Yesterday morning’s rude noise was the grinding death knell emanating from the dishwasher that has served us well, since we bought this house. NOT GOOD. Today, after the exterminator left, we went to visit our House Sitter (won’t be sitting the house for who knows how long into the future) at her Day Job. Her family owns A-1 Appliance and Repair, here in Placerville, and while they do not have a fancy showroom, they can get us a new dishwasher and a good price and will stand behind it., which means a lot, in this world of Corporate Everything. Now, we wait and wash the dishes. It could be far worse, because unlike refrigerators, you can still get a dishwasher. What a world. Covid-19.

Happy Birthday to My Partner in Crime

Birthday Breakfast

Like a bunch of our friends with successful, long term marriages, we have been celebrating our very Libra birthdays together, now for 53 years. My dad, after the divorce, took me out to eat at a fancy restaurant and when Rod entered the picture, he got to go, too. The last big one with his second intact family, included our two kids, who both remember the belly dancers, as vividly as I.

Two years ago, for the birthday year that he shares with our great friend from New Zealand, we took a 70th Birthday trip through Colorado and New Mexico, because it was their combined birthday wish to ride both the Durango/Silverton and the the Cumbres & Toltec railroads, in First Class. It was a blast and we are all looking forward to the days when America and Americans are not the Virus Capital, so that we can travel, once again.

Best Friend. Best Dad. Best husband. All around great guy. He has promised to help, when we attempt to do The Zoom thing, on the 16, 17 and 18th, from 10 to 11 am Pacific time, for our West Coast Rhinebeck booth. All of you folk who have been to shows know him so well, so it only seems fitting that we do it together.

Happy Birthday, Rod Souza!

Spreadsheets, Zoom Pro & Rhinebeck, oh my.

David and his spreadsheet.

My eyes are glazing over, so Mr Left Brain is going to have to come over here to get me through signing up for all of the stuff that makes me want to run away. I know, I signed up for it, but this will be my maiden voyage with Zoom. I guess that it will be how things happen, going forward but this old dog, like my poor struggling granddaughter, Syd, can’t wait for things to be “normal” again.

I’ll keep you posted.

A Feeling of Accomplishment

In they go.

Our county has a fairly small population, relative to how large it is, bordering Folsom, that straddles the bend in the landscape, up to the part of South Lake Tahoe, that butts up against the Nevada border. Our El Dorado county registrar moved mountains and mailed out our ballots on the 28th of September. Today was the very first day that we could slip them into the slot of the drop box, on the County Seat campus. He said that it sounded like the envelopes fell onto a soft pile of paper, instead of the thunk of bare metal. Thumbs up, voters!

We don’t get out that much, but when we make the drive Down The Hill to Folsom, it is good to take care of a couple of errands, to maximize the effort and time spent. Today was no exception.

We have been Kaiser members, since our firstborn and have been rolling in to get our flu shots at this time of year, forever, because we USED TO TRAVEL. Sorry, was I shouting? No indoor lineup for shots, anymore, so, today we took a chance and headed to the drive-thru flu shot hooptidoo! Talk about efficient, there were space for 6 vehicles at a time. We got in within 10 minutes, drove up to the front slot, handed over our cards and ID and then there was a nurse on each side of the car, to administer the shot to both of us at the same time. BAM and out! Well done , Kaiser, Folsom, well done.

We were out of there so fast that we had time to do something for the first time since probably February; we went to Trader Joe’s. I missed TJs, for all of those wonderful veggie blends and pasta sauce and well, the old comforts. We got in line, which went quickly, and got out quickly, in time for our appointment and high fives each other for the relative normal feeling of accomplishment. Seriously, the only weird thing was the way people no longer look at one another, once masked. Why is that? Afraid of “Cooties”, I guess.

Good night, wear a mask and be good humans.

Take A Deep Breath

Inhale. Exhale.

A little October surprise.

First of all, I want to thank my daughter, Lauren, for all of the effort that went into bringing the party to me. The air was cleaner and cooler, up here, and with more room to roam around, outside, the girlies could play and the young man, who used to be referred to as The Schnickle could do a zoom tutoring session, over here, in my office.

The morning after.

Having my family with me on my birthday meant everything. We may have taken things for granted, pre-Covid, but having a FaceTime call from the East Coast family and the gathering of the West Coast family made me so very happy and filled my heart.

Jacob, Sydney and Lily (on the right)

This year has been tough in so many ways but I feel very blessed to have two great “kids” and 5 wonderful grands. He and I started out as teenagers, 54 years ago, and are so proud of the great humans, who have come through us. I look at myself in this photo and see the wear and tear of these months but I am looking FORWARD to each day, as it comes. I echoed my grandmother, when I told Sydney (9 year old) that if you learn something new, every day, your heart and brain will stay young. She was right, my little French grandma.

We are going to drop off our ballots and get our flu shots, which are two biggies, in my estimation. Our isolation has kept us well and we will continue to be very careful, while NOT living in fear. Be good humans; wear a mask.

A New Decade

I just got an amazing gift; it was quiet enough, and he was low enough, for me to hear the wings of a turkey vulture, as he circled, looking for a morsel. I heard it, first, before seeing who it was and marveled that these worn out ears that hiss, from years of loud guitar players, could pick up something so subtle. I always tell people to Watch For Signs. Who Dat?

Yes, today is my 70th birthday, and while I am recovering from a war fought in my skin cells, today I feel happy. We get to have a little party, with 1/2 of our kids and 3/5th of our grandchildren, right in our own back yard. The last party was 5 years ago, when I threw myself a Medicare Birthday party, with lots of friends, at our neighbor’s event center, complete with a Country Swing Band It felt like such a milestone that I needed to do something big, to help ease the “pain”. This one feels different and calmer, as I slip into a new way of thinking about life. It reminds me of the Longevity Banquet that we attended, as a young married couple, for a dear friend’s Grandpa. I still have the little red pouch with the lucky coin that was a souvenir from this long, long dinner, where my friend told me to Pace Myself, because there were myriad courses to come. I’ll never forget it or the honor that our friend, Jeff Tom, bestowed upon us, as the only non Chinese folk there.

So, onward to today and all that life has in store fore me, one day at a time. I am a work in progress, looking forward to savoring every day, come what may.

Us VS Them mea culpa

I did it, yesterday. I pretty much said it, got called on it, examined my heated post, acknowledged it to the person who commented and took the post down. I am not apologizing for my feelings on the subject of what was unfolding in my town but I can see how my post would cause someone who sees red and only picks out key words to think that I am a terrible person. I accept that.


Another One Got Away

I loved her knitted hats and ability to costume and while she was tough, I admired her so much. Annie Modesitt Got Away today and this hits me hard.

I read her Knitting Heretic book and somehow, at that particular time in my life, adopted her combination knitting technique, which changed my fabric. To someone on the outside of this craft, I know, no biggie, but this was one of those little seedling moments. She inspired me with her designs and she has inspired me with how she has fought this cancer. She was scrappy and rubbed a lot people the wrong way but she loved her family fiercely and now she is gone.

Annie saw her husband through years of cancer treatment and then, like a slap upside of the head, her aches and pains turned out to be what had already alerted my loved one that something was amiss, leading to his diagnosis. She had helped us and now, her toughness could not hide what cancer was doing to her, even though she had driven cross country to do shows as a teacher and yarn company partner. The last time that I saw her was two years at Yarnfest, where we touched base about Multiple Myeloma. She was damned tired and in pain. Diagnosis came, soon after that.

You know what? I REALLY DID BELIEVE THAT SHE WOULD BEAT IT. Damn, Annie, the world just shook a bit. You were a rockstar and a PITA and I am going to miss the idea of you being in the world.

Going, going…

The Last Hardtwist

If you have been thinking about it, time is running out! This yarn will be like the Monty Python 🦜, cease to be.

There will be a new website in my future and I am going to pare down my ridiculously large choice of yarns, perhaps adding another sock base, but that is it. This yarn was made for me, SO many years ago and now, it is dribbling out, at the end.

Staring into a new decade of life, that is beginning with such drastic external changes, I have been taking the time to clean closets, my mind and business. You don’t stay in this kind of SMALL business without adaption, or you will not survive. I have had to juke and spin many times, since my first little craft show, and it is time for an overhaul of what has been a big beautiful website to something simpler and more attune to the needs of people who connect via phones and tablets, rather than the lavish space of my desktop.

Now, I just need to flush this damned Prednisone from my system, so that my heart can calm down, once again. It did the job of clearing my skin but 123 bpm while working in the dye room is a bit much. Ya think? Water water water water!

Dyed some of the Rhinebeck 2020 in Deluxe Sock, yesterday, so it will be available in two bases, with the Pyrenees Worsted. I will keep you posted.