Tuesday, April 27, 2010


About 18 years or so ago, the ex and I purchased a home in the town in which we live. It had been a three-bedroom rancher, but a previous owner had been a builder and added a two-story brick attachment with a sunken family room and a nice master bedroom suite upstairs. It was a good deal, and I liked the house...not the neighborhood so much, but the house.

Until. We had a serious gully-washer come through, and our house received a lot of run-off from the hill behind us. The rain started pouring in and the sunken living room lived up to its name. The ex, of course, wasn't home as he never was during a crisis (up to and including Hurricane Hugo!), and I frantically tried to save furniture and carpet.

Long story short, this builder didn't bother to waterproof the outer wall. We had one more deluge before we could have it fixed, and we couldn't save the carpet a second time.

What does this calamity have to do with laughter? I'll tell you. You knew I would. Around this same time, the British series of "Who's Line is it Anyway" was on Comedy Central. If you're only familiar with the Drew Carey version, that was limp and pale in comparison. The Brit version was hysterical. Rolling on the floor stuff. And I watched every single day throughout the mess. I'm not too sure it wasn't the only thing that kept me in my usual semi-sane state.

I'm a firm believer in the healing power of laughter. The DH and I have had some serious rocky times - almost all, I hasten to add, from external sources. We get along exceptionally well, mainly because I know how lucky I am, and he because he doesn't realize how heavily I keep him drugged. But there has never come a time when we couldn't laugh together, and if at times the laughter was a little bit on the hysterical side, well, it was still cathartic.

Almost two years ago, it was the last time we saw my father-in-law. We all knew he was passing, and only a couple of us could be with him in his hospital room at once. I stood in the hall with the DH and his older brother, and listened to them reminisce about their dad. They told camping stories, and house painting stories, and car trip stories, and throughout all of these warm memories was the thread of laughter. When I think of that day, I think of holding Dad's hand, telling him I loved him and trying to quiet him...and I think of that laughter.

Now, to quote Bill Cosby, I told you that one to tell you this. I stumbled (gracefully, naturally, as befits your goddess) across a blog today that had me laughing. Not just laughing, I should say. Guffawing till I was breathless, wiping away tears, and struggling hard to sober up when the phone rang. Now, I know humor is subjective, and what I find funny you may not, especially if you're a conservative about adult language and situations. I'm a bit like that in public (when did it become okay to drop the F-bomb in the middle of a crowded store?), but to read or watch as humor, I'm okay. If you are too, enjoy.

If you don't find her amusing, feel free to say so. I need a good laugh, and you'll do. :-)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Green...the color of Earth's life

I'd appreciate it, if you like my design best, if you'll go vote for it on Bloomingdale's site. Ta!

Green...the color of Earth's life: "

Country view of trees and birds, all in green, with the word GREEN descending on the right, and "...the color of Earth's life" across the bottom."

Saturday, April 10, 2010


No, for a change I'm not talking about myself, except in the sense that I was the recipient of an unexpected gift.

Not but what I should have expected it, but I am a true blond and occasionally have to act like one so as not to completely explode the stereotype which so comforts all you brunettes out there. I should have expected it because, at the beginning of the year, my new Terrier Twin requested my bust and hip measurements. And if you don't think taking them at the beginning of a new year is depressing, you have not been paying attention to just how abundant your Goddess is.

To back up a smidgen - if you've been following this blog at all, you know I own (or am owned BY) two Scotties. Jack is black, and almost nine. He has only one eye due to an accident that we think was caused by another puppy's claw (wince) poking him in that eye. It had to be removed. It doesn't faze him, other than he walks to the non-traditional side of me because that's where he can see me. He is a very devoted dog, one of the most so of all the Scotties I've owned over almost 29 years.

Benny is what is known as a wheaten Scottie. Most people think all Scotties are black, but that's not so. There are brindle Scotties, which are mostly black with sort of striping of various shades of brown or silver or red, and wheaten, which are never white but may be anything from a light silver to wheat to something like Benny's lovely coat, which reminds me of nothing so much as creme brulee. He has a fairly deep wheat cast, but the tips are pure cinnamon. Benny will be 8 this summer.

Once internet groups really took off, I joined one for Scottie owners. I didn't care for it. The group owner played favorites, was very autocratic and the group was too large for my taste. A new group, AngelScots, formed in memory of the owner's dog who'd recently gone to the Rainbow Bridge, was more to my liking. I joined it a few days after it was formed, and that was over 10 years ago now. Eventually, the DH and I were asked to take over ownership, and there it stands.

A few years ago, I got the idea of doing a secret pal program to foster members getting to know one another better. Being prone to alliteration, I named it Terrier Twins. The idea is to learn about the other person, send a few cards and a present or two, and be supportive when they need someone in their corner. For the most part, it has gone very well.

This year my friend Liz Lovick drew my name. You've seen her mentioned here many times before. She is an extraordinary font of information on knitting and spinning, specifically as found in the Scottish Isles. Liz is very generous in teaching others, and was doing just that on one of my knitting lists, when she happened to mention she was about to rescue a Scottie. She had owned one before and was involved with the local rescue program. I am sure you won't be surprised to hear that I pounced and invited her to join AngelScots. She's been a great asset to the list.

Now to the present, and the present. Liz had warned me a few weeks before Easter to watch for a package in the post. I was startled to receive the vest you've been seeing here...in fact, I was blown away. She used yarn from a company with which she is affiliated and one that is very popular with knitters, Colourmart. It is incredibly soft, and as you see, has wonderful Scottie motifs. It's part of a group of patterns Liz is creating to help raise money for her Scottie rescue group. We're helping by providing pictures of some of the items, like the hat
which I knitted from a previous gift. And as of yesterday, I am a test knitter for a lace Scottie scarf for her. Liz sent me the pattern, some scrumptious yak-blend deep lavender yarn, and some stitch markers she made for me, and I cast on last night. I got 27 rows in and found a typo, so I feel very useful. LOL.

Liz had my name for Christmas when she sent me the hat pattern and yarn. She also sent me an incredible spindle by Michael Woods, and some silk hankies and roving to match that she had hand-dyed for me. I spun a singles of each and plied them together recently for about 160 yards of two-ply yarn in what I would call a heavy laceweight. I have a lot more to spin, but this first skein is really pretty, and as soon as I get a picture I'll post it for you.

Anyway, two weeks ago we did a fundraiser day for the local no-kill animal adoption center, Briggs. We did pet pictures and donated part of the sitting fee to Briggs. I wore my vest that day, got many compliments and had the DH do some photos for Liz. The shirt I wore under it is, I know, big on me, but I figured I'd better wear loose clothing if I were dealing with dogs all day. It was a lot of fun.

Meanwhile, a gentleman just brought in two photos for me to restore, so back to it!