My 1 Million Row Challenge

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Halloween Candy

As of this morning I had still not bought the Halloween candy to pass out to the kids in the neighborhood. The house was not festooned with the usual Halloween decorations. All this had Eric very concerned. So John and I went and got the decorations out and got them ready for placement tomorrow.

While we were out we did finally get some candy. The good news was that it was half price the day before Halloween. I will have to remember this for next year. They even had coupons at the store for some of the candy.  The even better news was that they had sold out of the candy that I liked so that there is less chance that I will be eating any of it.

OK we are ready bring on Halloween.

So have a safe Halloween with your families. Please remember to be safe and wear bright colors. Bring your flashlights. Only go to houses with the lights on. But most importantly inspect your child's candy and throw away anything that looks odd or is opened. Feel free to buy back your child's excess candy, most children don't want all that candy and like a little extra money.

This year we are doing something different with the left over Halloween candy. We are sending it to Operation Gratitude to go into care packages for our service members. You can find out more about Operation Gratitude at the following web site .

Have a great evening and enjoy your families.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Life As We Know It

I had one of those humours moments yesterday. We are planning a surprise for Eric. No I can not divulge much to you except to say it involves a lot of planning. I was talking to the reservation clerk telling her what we needed to make the surprise happen for Eric.

To me it is normal to travel with an IV Pole, feeding pump, percussion vest/machine, nebulizer and assorted medical supplies. After all aren't we know for packing the entire house for any excursion. Clothes are usually an after thought and packed in over night bags no matter how long we are gone. Well I think I heard her jaw drop as she tried to regain her composer after we started discussing beds and bed rails. I tend to forget not everyone has a real hospital bed in their child's room. No, the surprise place has no hospital beds available for guests. Really!

But that lead to a very funny dinner conversation with John about what we consider normal living with Eric and what the rest of the world must think of us. After all doesn't every one take a car full of medical equipment and extension cords on vacation?

It has also occurred to me this morning that Teri and I had a very similar conversation this summer. Doesn't everyone plan their trips around where there are children's hospitals? And that I might actually inadvertently be scaring people with young and healthy children.

I find it amazing how we can get caught up in our own lives and forget that the rest of the world does not live just like us. Well it is time to get my day started. Have a great day and enjoy your families.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Tucson Wool Festival 2010

The great news is that another Tucson Wool Festival is coming up on November 6. From 9 am to 3 pm.

The Withers Ranch will once again be open to the public for shearing and all sorts of fiber related demonstrations. Vendors from the southwest will be showing their craft and hopefully developing new fiber addicts.

Raffle Shawl 2010

A Freeform Shawl spun, woven, knitted, and crocheted with a more scientific slant will be raffled off with the proceeds going to the Casa Maria Kitchen.

The Withers’ Ranch

4010 W Palo Seco

(520) 572-3758/401-6117

Make sure you fill out an entry form to get in the drawing for great prizes. There will be one for knitters & crocheters, one for spinners, and one finished item to give away.

TOURS of the animals will be given at 9 A.M. and 12:00 P.M.

Shearer: Danny Smith will be coming from Missouri to shear. If you are a breeder in the southwestern part of Arizona, he is willing to add you and your animals to his list to do around the November 6, 2010


Rae's Wood,

Inkle looms, regular size and mini's, stick and inkle shuttles, pick up sticks, niddy noddys, loom benches, inkled items like hatbands and shoelaces, and bowls.

Campe Verde Llamas: Chris and Nancy Wilson,, will have llama, alpaca, and Shetland sheep rovings from their animals. They will also have blends of llama and soy silk, alpaca and soy silk, llama blended with Shetland wool and mohair, and alpaca blended with Shetland wool and Firestar. Other items include books, knitting and crocheting patterns, Eucalan wool wash, Gaywool dyes, and the new bamboo carbon top from Southwest Trading Company.
Sara Sacks: Woolies - hats, kids sweaters and toys, and shawls.

Alpacazona Farm: Claudia and Brian Klaus, Fiber from start to finish. Alpaca fleece, roving, and yarn. Exotic fibers including cashmere, yak, camel, silk, and silk blends. Both commercial and hand spun yarns. A wide variety of finished products: commercial and hand woven.

Canyon Wren Ranch: Cathy Gorman will be selling fleeces, rovings and yarns from her Natural Churro Sheep.

Acres of Blessings: The Smiths from Missouri will have raw fiber, rovings and yarns from their Merino and Romney and sheep crosses. Danny will be shearing. He also makes and sells drop spindles.

Karen Herhold designs - Artistic Fibers and Felting

Chamomile Connection - Lynnae Mcconaha, specializing in organic cotton and silk, spinning fibers, handpainted sliver and yarns,

Handmade~by~Sheri - Me - I will have a large selection of stitch markers  in all price ranges.

Rita Blocksom - wet and needle felting artist. Demonstrations throughout the day and mini classes.

9:30 Making Cosmic Spirals

11:00 Creating Silk Paper for Embellishment

12:30 Beads, Baubles and Bling

2:00 Crazy Felt

Karen Samson: Feltings

Celestial Designs Fiber Art from Minnesota: custom carded batts, original patterns, needle felting kits, hand spun yarns, and handmade knitting bags. Books, looms, and other fiber accessories.

Dove Mountain Alpacas: Donna Smith with Suri and Huacaya alpaca products.


Drop spindling: Amy Shimel of Electric Sheep Fiber Arts will be giving mini lessons throughout the day.

Nuno felting with Karen Herhold - make a small scarf that can be used as a
hair bow or belt. $25 includes the cost of all supplies. Class will begin at
approximately 10 a.m.


Rectangle Loom Weaving: Judith Segel will demonstrate the continuous strand weaving technique to make a woven rectangle. The continuous strand weaving method means you do not have to "dress a loom."

Please stop by and show support for Kathy and the other fiber artists.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

This Weekend

This weekend was fun but busy filled with cleaning. Laundry - when is there not laundry? Knitting. Shopping for new glasses for me they should be in sometime in the next 10 to 14 days. I also made time to work on stitch markers for the special packages of stitch markers that I will have at the Tucson Wool Festival on November 6  from 9 am to 3:00 pm at the Withers Ranch.

Well its getting late so I will write more tomorrow.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


I had a great day yesterday. After bagels and coffee with some good friends I ran my errands and then came home to have lunch and take a nap. I have a valid excuse for the nap, Eric was up until 12:30 am and I was tired.

The new blanket pattern is taking on a life of its own. I am 27 rows into the new design and the yarn did something very unexpected. I had envisioned the pattern going in more of a tumbling block pattern, but the yarn is taking me in a totally new direction. In about 120 more rows the 1st half of the blanket should be done and the other half will be a mirror image of the 1st half.

The creative juices did not stop there yesterday. I hit the beads and came up with over a dozen one of a kind stitch markers that will be unveiled on November 6th at the Tucson Wool Festival. I will be there from 9 am to 3 pm at Wither's Ranch located at 4010 W Palo Seco in Tucson. The Withers Ranch will once again be open to the public for shearing and all sorts of fiber related demonstrations. Vendors from the southwest will be showing their craft. I will add a post later to give a map and all the details of the day.

I am happy to say that Eric got to sleep at a decent hour last night so today should be more productive. Have a great day and enjoy your families.

Monday, October 18, 2010

A Breif Catch Up

I did not think that John paid much attention to my knitting or yarn in general, but I was wrong. Over the weekend when I started winding some yarn for hats his comment was that he hoped that the yarn was for charity hats and not for my Art Fire Studio. Yes the next batch will be charity hats. I still have a lot of hats in my studio.

I also found 4 sets of knitting needles on Friday as I was digging out a knitting bag for a new knitter. I wonder how many sets of knitting needles I would have if I had finished all my work in progress projects. When I went into the tub to pull out the empty bag I also pulled out 4 projects that were still on the needles that I had not worked on since before the remodel. Everything was gathered and put in 96 quart containers to get them out of the way and out of the construction dust.

I have also started writing out the baby blanket with mixed blocks that is knit in one piece. This also includes the boarder being knit as you go so the little ones can't rip apart the squares. The pattern will be in my studio after I finish writing it up.  The blanket has been spoken for already but the pattern should be here soon. So you have something to look forward to.

Well I have to get back to my to do list. Have a great evening and enjoy your families.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Buddy's Grill

Today we had lunch at an old favorite that we have not been to in awhile. Buddy's Grill at 4821 E Grant just east of Swan. Lunch was just amazing. I can't not believe that there was not a line out the door, it must be the economy because the food and service were outstanding.

The server offer drinks as soon as we sat down. The flavored tea was excellent. While we were waiting for our order the waiter brought out fresh, hot bread and muffins. More bread was served when the salad came and that was a nice complement to the salad.

I had the Grilled Chicken Salad for $10.50. The salad came covered with freshly grilled chicken  that was juicy, moist and thinly sliced. One half of a sliced avocado which was soft creamy and delicious, tomatoes, olives and artichoke hearts. The salad was fresh and crisp with romaine lettuce. The  toppings were plentiful.  It came with a choice of salad dressing and I went with my old stand-by a side of mayo and ketchup which I mix at the table. The salad was so flavorful that it would be a push if a whole tablespoon of dressing made it on to the salad.

John had the Turkey Breast and Canadian Bacon Sandwich for $9.50. The sandwich was served on marble rye bread and filled to the brim with Turkey, Canadian bacon, avocado, lettuce, tomatoes and tarragon mayonnaise. The sandwich came on a dinner plate with the sandwich taking up half of the plate. The other half was covered with fresh from the fryer french fries with just the right amount of salt. John said his sandwich was very good and not a bite remained on his plate by the end of the meal.

I have to admit that I trade most of my artichoke hearts with John for 3 or 4 french fries. It was well worth the trade. They were cooked just right crisp on the outside and soft and moist on the inside. With just the right amount of salt. It was a push as to who got the better deal in the swap with each of us declaring victory.

As for the restaurant, the parking was plentiful. The atmosphere was calm and relaxing. Eric enjoyed there music selection very much and the volume was just right. This is a perfect place to take out of town guest. It also has the right atmosphere for family dinners. John and I plan on going back soon. After all there is a full menu to try out that includes sandwiches, gourmet Angus burgers, pasta, fresh seafood and more.

In case you want to call ahead for reservations the Grant at Swan location telephone number is (520)795-2226. You can also check out their web site at for menu selection, specials, events and other locations.

Well it has been a very good and long day so have a great evening and enjoy your families.

*Buddy's Grill did not provide any compensation for this blog. John and I paid for our own meal. The opinions express here are my own. Menu pricing is subject to fluctuation's so the prices are apt to change.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Yarn and Things

Well I have done it. I finally wound the last 18 skeins of wool boucle yarn that Nancy gave me for charity knitting 3 years ago. Just in case you were not in on that yarning  Nancy gave me a 33 gallon trash bag, yes one of those big black ones filled to the brim with it. To make warmer winter outer wear I blended it with worsted weight white yarn. Which I have rededicated, the white yarn was meant for 2 white wool blankets to donate to sick children; well being a mother of a sick child I know a white wool blanket is the very last thing that Eric would need or that I would want to do the upkeep on. So I mixed 9 skeins of white yarn with 18 skeins of boucle to come up with a warm colorful warm blends of 100% wool yarn that can be knit on US size 13 knitting needles. Yes it does make the projects go faster. The good news is that the bright orange yarn that the kids love is almost gone 1 or 2 ponchos at the most ( can you tell I am tired of bright orange yarn), then on to the red and yellow.

From that white wool yarn I am also rededicating 2 strips that were meant for a very complicated crochet pattern which was not included with the blanket but I was suppose to figure out on my own. I figure that once they are finished thay will make great scarfs , gifts for the shelter ladies that Nancy works with.

Today I also got some more organizing done. Since Eric had the day off from school we finally found the time to bring in the tabs that he and his friends from Taglit collected over the summer. He proudly carried in over 9 pounds of tabs to help the kids at the Tucson Ronald McDonald house. So If you have any tabs send them our way, this is a year round charity project for Eric.

Well John just got home so it is time to think about dinner. So have a great evening and enjoy your families.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A Very Busy Day

Today really started out last night. Eric just had that look and choose pedilyte instead of formula. Which was just as well because shortly after 8 pm he did his first of many eyrps for the night. John graciously brought me my knitting and he knew just which projects to give me. Yes mindless knitting of rectangles to turn into ponchos.

I started on poncho last night and just about finished the first panel today. That was the bright orange one on size 13 needles. I also alternated to a brown, poncho on size 7 needles just to break things up. I am almost halfway through the first panel of that one.

In between knitting, running to the store before the morning aide left, napping sitting with Eric and doing 5 loads of laundry only 4 of which were Eric's eyrpy loads. I did manage to find 58 minutes to myself to do some Wii Fit plus. This was the longest session since dad died. I think I am finally getting back on track.

We it is time to empty the dishwasher and make a fruit salad for dinner. Have a great evening and enjoy your families.

Monday, October 11, 2010

My Lastest Charity Projects

Today was spent doing some knitting and not much else. I did not manage to get out of the house today. I was up with Eric until after midnight again so I spent part of the day catching up on sleep.  I have noticed that since I gave up diet soda I need my sleep.

I finally got to my finishing basket today. Freshly sewn together, ends woven in and miscellaneous finishing work done are 2 ponchos, 2 hats and 1 scarf for the OPK Guild winter charity projects.

I still do have some room in my XXL Ziploc bag so I have started a few more projects. I don't know if they will be finished in time but there is always next year.

Well some more knitting tonight and maybe a few minutes on the tread mill. Have a great evening and enjoy your families.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

This Weekend

We have had a very enjoyable weekend. Yesterday Eric, Natalie, Nancy and I went to Tucson Meet Yourself in it's new expanded format. The food was great. We caught one Motown cover group. I was a shame that they did not have a CD or I would have had 1 less gift to buy for Eric. We seemed to walk forever and it still amazes me that people will cut off a wheelchair thinking I can stop on a dime and not hit them by accident. Look at it this way if you can not stop your car on a dime what chance do I have pushing a 80+ pound wheelchair with and 80+ pound boy and all the mobile equipment we take every where. A good time was had by all, but a little more shade would have been great. We did stop by a local favorite Eegee's for their signature slush's on the way home. It was a nice treat from Nancy.  Nancy and Natalie enjoy the flavor of the month black raspberry and I stuck with my standby pina colada.

I have to admit after pushing Eric up and down ramps, bridges and all over Tucson Meet Yourself I did take a nap when we got home. Eric also did not want to unwind from such a fun day. So we were up till all hours and I did cheat on today's chores. I started the laundry while I was waiting for Eric to go to sleep. I got 2 loads done, but I would have rather had the sleep.

Today was a very kick back day with brunch at China Phoenix for Dim Sum (Chinese dishes that involves small individual portions of food) at Oracle and Ina in the Safeway shopping center. The food was good as usual. As usual we ordered way too much and took some home for tomorrow. I think I really did plan on taking some home, I just hoped that we would have a few more footballs to take home.

Since it was right there I went to Safeway while John stayed and helped Eric finish his lunch. The timing worked out perfectly. I had finished most of my shopping by the time the guys caught up with me. Eric and I then spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying the great out doors. 

Yes I did spend some time knitting this weekend and even finished 3 projects. Well I hear the rest of the laundry calling me. So have a great evening and enjoy your families.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Dawn in the Desert

After a very long night with Eric, I spent a few minutes enjoying the first light of dawn in the desert this morning. Yes it was chilly in the mid 60's but the view was incredible. The colors were soft the saguaro's majestic. Yes the birds were very active today and chattering between themselves. I am very thankful for the beautiful desert that I am able to enjoy on a daily basis.

I don't know which was better the view or being outside with out a hat and sun glasses to shield me from the sun. I hope that the few minutes of peace and tranquility will follow me through today. Have a great day and take a few minutes today to count your blessings today.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


I had grand plans for today. Getting out of the house, a lot of shopping, lunch with a friend, and of course knitting. But I am sad to say that after getting roomba started I made the mistake of sitting down on the couch in a very quiet house. Two hours later I woke up from an apparently much needed nap.

I did try clothes shopping today but my body just was not into it. I did however find a new bath mat that was on sale for 50% off and used a coupon for an additional $10 off. So for less then the cost of lunch out we have a new bath mat to replace the one that is a little past its prime. I am sure that I can find a dog who will love our old bath mat and not mind the frayed edges.

I also decided that it was time in Tucson for hot cocoa and marshmallow's after all the temperature has fallen in to the low 80's during the day and it is very cloudy with a good chance of rain. So while at the grocery store I pick up the fixings and plan on having some today.

I still will get in some Wii and knitting. have a great evening and enjoy your families.

Monday, October 4, 2010


It was a very busy weekend which settled into a very busy Monday. Since Eric was home sick I made a long to do list which is 3/4 finished. I can actually say that I am caught up on laundry for the moment. We all know that I will have at least 2 full loads tomorrow. Such is life when Eric feels that it is one of his chores to make the most laundry possible. He is usually good for 10 to 12 loads of laundry by himself per week. I do have the market cornered on Tide and Downy. Now if I could just get him to fold and put his own laundry away. Yes I know that will never happen.

My roomba decided to go on robot strike this weekend. It was more like I am just going to sit here in one spot and spin.  John did do his best to fix roomba and politely ignored Teri's comment ;" but did he add a flame thrower, the roombas not really fixed until you add a flame thrower :P".  As this is a right to work state we went right out and got the latest model of Roomba that Costco had, the 550-1. I have to say that the new model is a little different but even easier to use. Roomba actually talks and tells me what it wants. Plus it runs very quietly. I am able to get 2 full cleaning cycles out of it per day. I tend to vacuum a little more during change of seasons because of all the dust.

I am currently in a clean and throw mode so if it is not nailed down it will be tossed, go to charity, recycled or put away. Now that I have a burst of energy back I will go back to my to do list. I hope that you are having a great Monday too.

Friday, October 1, 2010

What to Knit

Like many other knitters I struggle with what to knit next. There is just so much lovely yarn. So many good causes for those in need. There are projects for family and friends. Of course there is Project Gratitude for our wonderful service members. Also the feeling that if I just come up with the right thing sales in my Art Fire Studio would take off, by the way the link is . There are also a lot of patterns that I would like to make for myself.

I know that I should not feel guilty for knitting for myself, but I always seem to be the last on my list of projects to start or finish. I would like to know how other people deal with this dilemma. Please leave your comments below. The winner will be picked by a random number generator on October 15, 2010. Oh yes the prize will be some one of a kind stitch markers.

Thank you for your input. I look forward to your solutions. Have a great weekend and enjoy your families.