My Favorite Books

Sunday, October 31, 2021



I have purchased more circular needles for this top that it would have been cheaper for me to just buy a top!  But the needles don't cost anything to keep once you buy them, right!  And I have to say I really like the pattern from Valentina Bogdanova.  She has lace in a majority of her patterns I have seen on Instagram and in Ravelry.  And her instructions are so well written.  I am impressed!  You can see more of her patterns on Ravelry or on Instagram.  I already see another pattern I would like to purchase/make.....This is the color and yarn I'm using.  It's by Cascade Yarns/Heritage (wool and nylon).  

So this is/was my practice piece...I wanted to verify the gauge I needed since I had to change needle size (several times!) and some of the stitches were new to me.  Good way to "kill two birds with one stone" as they say!  I could check gauge and practice!

This Tee is knitted from the top down and has lace work just about under your chest area...then it's straight knitting.

No, I have no shame...after I binding off the stitches, I wanted to make sure the smaller lace work would fit over my head!  I had that fear!  So this was me yesterday a.m. before makeup just trying on the upper lace piece.  Actually, the lace pattern yoke continues down to under your chest area.  Fingers crossed it fits!!! 

Obviously, the collar will lay flatter around the neck area with the weight of the lace and blocking.  As  you can see in the next picture of the actual pattern.

And just to show I can clean up, here I am all ready to head out with Bob.

No I didn't crochet or knit that black wrap.  I bought that several years ago in Florida when my bud, Marcia, and I were shopping at the Villages.  I think I paid $15 for it!  Guess money I saved on buying yarn and making that I've spent on this lace top!  

Monday, October 25, 2021

Update on projects!

Well, library book sale is now over and we were pretty successful!  We are a very small town with a population of 1849 (as of 2019) our next largest town is Davison which has a population of 4937!  HA  Now we're working on cleaning out older books as well as those books that could be torn or musty, etc.  Actually, we had so many donation books we didn't even take boxes from our shelves where we store books for each book sale.  Next, we'll go through all of those books for 'cleaning out'.  We're lucky to have four new volunteers this year that are really good workers!  Sure helps! 

So, I finished my little winter hat which is mindless knitting....

And now I'm working on practice knitting the lace pattern for the top I previously posted about.  I still need to get different size circular needles but thought I might as well see what the pattern will look like in the yarn I chose.  Really, my friend suggested this color yarn and I'm glad she did.  I do like it!
Long story...Bob wanted a new 'inbetween' comforter' (we have a lightweight for summer, then fall, then snowtime/winter!) off shopping we went.  But what to do with this old one...can't give it as a donation since the down feathers are separated and areas are just like a sheet!  
I thought, why not cut it apart and make little comforter beds to place in dogs crates.  I already have these soft beds so they don't lay on the crate floor but thought these sections would make their beds more comfy!  What was I thinking!

You can see above where I had to squeeze the comforter under my machine to I could stitch before I cut apart a total of 4 sections (two for each bed).   First time, I had feathers all over, after just cutting about a 3" section.  I finally did a double straight stitch then an over edge stitch.  Still ended up with feathers on my top and pants but.....almost 3 hours later!!!!!  Yes, it took me three hours!  I started at 11:50 and ended at 2:45!  that did include vacuuming the floor and me!

I've always had pillow cases over the dog beds in their crates, so I can wash weekly (just like our sheets!  HA).  So I placed the two sewn sections on top of each bed and replaced the pillow cases!  TaDa!  Both dogs jumped in last night while we were taking our baths.  Normally, they come in the bathroom but last night they stayed in their beds.  I didn't take a picture of them enjoying their puffy me...they are happy!  And it's a good thing!

And I have my disperse dye blocks up on my design  board.  This gives me a chance to play around with the design and layout of the blocks. 

I've already sewn some of the blocks together.  But this project will just be ongoing when I am bored with a current project!  

I know the blocks appear very pale but that's ok.  I have other ideas on what's going on top of this piece!  And, actually, who knows how this will end up!  Isn't that the fun part of working on a design?  

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

 I am sharing my daughter's newsletter from this month.  I thought there was some interesting points she has and thought I'd share.  I know most of my readers are not still working but some of this applies to all of us whether we are retired or not!  Hope you get some good ideas for the upcoming new year!  Or even for applying IM's to we retiree's!  HA  Enjoy!

Can you believe that it is only 75 days until 2022? I have been busy helping some of my clients put together their strategic plans for the coming year. What are you looking forward to in 2022?

I recently participated in the Experience Institute 🎇New Year’s Letter Challenge✨. It involves writing a handwritten letter to yourself that you will open on January 1st.

What to write about?
There are no limitations here. The audience is you. Here are a few questions to help you begin:
✅ What do you want to remember about your year thus far?
✅ What have you seen?
✅ Who have you met?
✅  How have you changed?
✅  What do you wish were different?
✅  What have you celebrated recently?
✅  Where do you hope to be this time next year?

This could be a great family activity, so be sure to pass it along. Maybe you know who you will see during the holidays. Encourage everyone to write a letter and bring it with them to read and celebrate together.

Let me know if you participate and want a reminder. Love to see how many people join in the fun!

Please hit reply and let me know what you think!
Many companies employ messaging applications like Microsoft Teams as way for employees to connect. Instant messaging can create a more organic, conversational atmosphere among colleagues, especially when coworkers are not co-located. It also can save time when a quick alignment or speedy response is needed. Used less thoughtfully, it can be distracting and disruptive.

Consider the following tips for professional use of instant messaging:

  • Respect the recipient’s status. If someone shows as offline, busy, in a meeting, or on presenting/do not disturb, send an email instead.
  • If a recipient shows as available, ask if they are sharing their screen and if you might have a few minutes of their time.
  • The use of dual monitors doesn’t always update the messaging application status during screen sharing. Likewise, if someone is signed into the application on multiple devices, like a mobile device and a laptop, the status may not be accurate.
  • Be patient. If the person doesn’t respond within 20-30 minutes, send an email.
  • If they respond that they don’t have time right now, respect that. Send an email or schedule a short meeting during an open time on their calendar.
  • If the recipient has time, stay focused! Ask the question(s), but stick to at most three related questions on one topic max. Your time is valuable and so is theirs.
  • If it would be easier to call than to type, ask if the recipient is able to speak before using the in-app call feature. Sometimes your colleague needs to grab their headset or close a door before they can easily accommodate a verbal conversation.
  • Thank your colleague for their time and response.

While instant messaging can be a useful tool for checking in with your team less formally, always consider where your colleague is geographically located and whether you are pinging them at a convenient time. Resist messaging contacts first thing in the morning or at the end of their workday.

Check out “12 Tips for Instant Messaging in the Workplace” and “Best Practices for Instant Messaging at Work” for additional helpful tips for using messaging applications respectfully and successfully. Many of the suggestions in these resources are worth considering for meetings and emails, too. 
Last month, we asked if you create personal strategic plans.

Here are the results!
Which platform do you use for Instant Messaging?
Microsoft Teams
Google Chat
None of the above / I don't use IM
Are you prepared for your next big step / transition or still thinking about it?

  • Join The Activators Strategy Lab to get clear on your next move.
  • Be part of a small group where you design a 6-month plan and work with accountability partners to help you execute it.
Transition Café - Detroit
Are you in transition? Join Mark Cory and I on Wednesday November 10th for an opportunity to meet with professionals and executives who are ready to develop and expand their networking relationships!

If you are an executive in transition, consider joining us at our next meeting on Wednesday, November 10 at 3:00 p.m. EST.
I hope you enjoyed this month's newsletter. I would love any questions or suggestions from you. Feel free to hit reply and we'll get in touch!
If you're going through a transition and need some extra support, schedule a conversation with me.
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Saturday, October 16, 2021

Knitting Time (again!)

 I showed a knitted cuff I made a few weeks ago from some old, leftover yarn.  It wasn't the best work due to the yarn fraying when adding the beads but I've worn it a few times.  I started another one but got sidetracked!  Go figure!  I have a few balls of Cascade 220 Superwash wool left from my poncho I finished last figured since I don't have a decent cap to wear  in the fall/winter on our walks, I'd make one!  Let's face it...hats are very easy to make and you can even watch a movie on your laptop while a football game is on the TV!  Yes, I do multi task!  HA

But this next project I'll only be knitting when it's quiet and I haven't had a glass or wine - or maybe I'll need a glass of wine!  HA  

My sister and I both saw this on Facebook so we are both going to make it together!   It's always fun to have us both work on a pattern so if one of us runs into trouble or one knows a stitch, we can help each other out.  
 The pattern is called Reina de Picas (on Ravelry) and I am so impressed with the instructions.  Yes, it's lace and you can either knit according to the chart or the written instructions (which I prefer).  I've used some charts for knitting but they have to be simple...I get lost easily!  

I actually had sent away for another pattern before I saw the lace top above.  This jacket is a 10+ year old pattern from Europe and a company (now defunct) called SMC Select.  
I found the pattern on Ebay and almost had a panic attack when I opened up the booklet!  It was written in German or Swedish!  But I kept flipping through the pages and English appeared!  WHEW!!!

I would make the length closer to my waist vs as high as it is here in the picture.

The yarn used in this pattern is no longer being produced.  I was at our local knit shop last week trying to find a substitute and decided to try and use my 220 Superwash leftover.  I started to knit up a swatch to see how it would work and I was quite happy with the gauge.  Ignore the bottom knitting part as I was just playing around before I decided to try to actual pattern.  I like the feel of the piece and think it will make a nice lightweight jacket.  But, I do want to tackle the lace top first.  It may take me until next spring/summer to finish!  I can always make the jacket later!

Just to show why I've been lax in updating my blog....we're having our first book sale in almost two years this coming weekend at our little library in town.  I put together this video of our upcoming sale.  With the exception of most books on the shelves around the room, books have all been donated by patrons or our library (they weed out so they can replace with newer books).  It's taken us about two weeks of volunteer workers categorizing books, moving tables, organizing books, DVD's, etc.  It's a ton of work but we're hoping for a good turnout! Yes, I'm having fun playing around with making videos!!  

Thursday, October 7, 2021


Happy Anniversary to my hubby!  30 years ago we were heading to the airport to fly to Vegas to get married!  We started to make wedding arrangements and when we got to the part of hiring a band and they  mentioned paying for an additional hour or two after 10 p.m.  Bob said "we go to bed early!  I'm not staying".  HA  

So what did we do but tell the kids we're off to Vegas to get married!  We had a get-together with the family at a local restaurant a few weeks after we returned.  Worked out good for us and we got to spend a few days in Vegas!  Perfect!  So, no marriage is perfect but we've survived a30 years nd look forward to the rest of our life together!  Just a little video I put together!


Sunday, October 3, 2021

Busy Week


We've had so much rain lately and  temps in the high 80's this week I had to take advantage of the cooler temps and a few days of no rain.  Deck painting time!  Actually, it's been four years since I painted the spindles and Bob repaired and replaced some of the wood on the deck.  Seems like we just did all that work. 

So that's been my week!!  After living here for over 25 years, I decided to count the spindles on the deck and the front porch!  There are 35 on the front porch and 175 on deck. Just sayin!

Yep, Kalee on the left and Gigi on the right had to oversee!!

These are the stairs down to the back yard area.  Those white Rubbermaid rockers have been with us for 30 years!!  Hard to believe...even though made with a hard material they are so comfortable!  I sit there almost daily at some point....letting girls out or just sitting and resting after pulling weeds!  HA

This is the lower deck area heading to the back yard.  I have these pics in reverse order..

So next 'job' will be bringing in the lawn ornaments, cutting back a few bushes (I don't cut back a lot of my plants) and then pull weeds for the last time this summer/fall...we need to get ready for bagging leaves!  Another one of my favorite things!!!  NOT!