When Screaming is Good

Clearly, if you are in dire straits, a scream might be good. I can now report that screaming combined with maniacal laughing and tears can be incredibly cathartic.

I’ll briefly remark that this was an exceptionally challenging year, beginning in November 2013. Everyone has them. Everyone knows how tough they are to get through, so I don’t need to elaborate.

I WILL say that a trip to Disney, while expensive and chock-full of bad food (sorry, Walt, but it doesn’t have to be like that!), is a fantastic way to cast off the hard times. I especially recommend any roller coaster or ride that drops straight down.

My Disney accompaniment included my husband (our first time to go there together!!) and our oldest grand girl. Exhausting, and more fun that anything.

I’ve also resumed my knitting with my former feverish rate. I’ve just finished:

  • A beautiful “Panoramic Shawl” by Hannah Fettig (done in Swans Island Natural Colors Merino Fingering Indigo purchased at Red Sock Yarns in Fish Creek, Door County, Wisconsin)
  • A wonderful “Rolling Rock” by Thea Coleman (done in Plucky Knitter Primo Sport color way Lonesome Highway).
  • A scrumptious “Mini Water’s Edge” also by Hannah Fettig (done in Plucky Knitter Primo Worsted, color way Narragansett Grey), seen below.



Drilling Concrete



I can do a fair amount of home repairs, as long as there’s no plumbing, electricity, or leveling required. I like to think that my projects are well conceived, but sometimes brutishly executed. I’m ok with that.

My new house is made of concrete. That’s the walls, floor and ceiling. Concrete. Poured in place. The three little pigs would love it, and I do, too.

Some projects I’ve wanted to tackle necessitate drilling into that concrete. After watching two contractors install some appliances (involving plumbing and electrical work) and how many drill bits and and how much strength and will it took to get those jobs done, I was approaching my simpler drilling tasks with trepidation.

Naturally beautiful

Naturally beautiful

So here’s what I finally did. Harnessing my femininity, I whipped up a homemade deep conditioning treatment (yogurt, banana, avocado, honey and olive oil), slathered it on and just sat there for an hour. Yeah. That felt good, and gave me a good hair day.

Then I got out a recent gift of Scotch Naturals nail products and painted my toenails (Thank you, Bert). There, that’s better. Those little piggies like it.

Finally, I rubbed on some of this fragrant Lush “Wiccy Magic Muscles” massage bar (Thank you, Megan). Wow. Energizing AND relaxing AND strengthening.

Wickedly Wiccy

Wickedly Wiccy

Then I put on safety glasses, rounded up my DeWalt drill, popped in a rock carbide bit and, wham! I hung up a vintage magazine rack salvaged from my old home. Now it can once again be used for outgoing mail, magazines, knitting patterns, or notices to a certain spouse.

It was a good day!


See what I can do?

See what I can do?

Relocation, Rearrangement, Rethinking

Cliff rose in full bloom

Cliff Rose (Purshia stansburiana) in full bloom

After twenty years at the same address I have moved. I’d never lived anywhere that long before, yet it came as a shock that we had begun considering moving this time last year.

I realized earlier today that it’s been more than six months since my last electronic chronicles were recorded here. Life and opportunity got in the way of blogging. However, when I scan this new place, I see I’ve been very busy putting pen to paper in many journals found pretty much all over the place. Amid paint cans, the chipper/shredder, the wheelbarrow and a multitude of unfinished knitting projects.

During the months away from the laptop I visited my brother in his new place in Colorado and went for a road trip with my mom. I even got back to Orcas Island for a bit. But then life took one of those wacky unforeseen turns. During those many blurry weeks we were scrambling between a total of four different residences and none of us (husband, dad-in-law, me) really lived anywhere. We were just kind of perching amid the shambles of a major life upheaval.

Three months ago, I was a small town girl living close to downtown (ugh, I see that sounds eerily like a Journey song) in a neighborhood my husband had called home for nearly 40 years. Now I live in the country (along with husband) with cottontails, quail, feral cats, too much horehound, views, and incredible, peaceful quietude. On a road named after this beautiful and fragrant native shrub. Now I am contemplating raising llamas or maybe chickens if I can figure out the predator prey situation. Just like real life!

Here’s to navigating the inevitable as gracefully as possible while taking in the sights, sounds and smells of this beautiful new/old house.

What’s loosely related:


Be Kind

Ben's Bells wind chime found on hiking trail 8.14.13

Ben’s Bells wind chime found on hiking trail 8.14.13

After a great camping trip last week and then two nights of sleeping in the bed of my truck in the driveway in order to view the Perseid meteor shower, I’ll admit I’ve been dragging butt a bit during the daylight hours.

I mean, I didn’t sleep in my own bed for five nights so I was lingering a bit too long in my yummy linen sheets for the past couple mornings.

With a husband who is working day and night, an almost empty fridge and a sluggish outlook, it was time to resume my daily hiking regimen and get the shopping done.

And am I ever glad I did! Look what I found hanging on the trail head.

Ben’s Bells, a non profit based in Tucson, commemorates the life of Ben, one of the sons of the founders of the organization. You can’t buy a Ben’s Bell, they can only be found where they’ve been left. And after finding your gift, you’re asked only to “Be Kind.”

Visit their website to find out about various kindness programs, how you can nominate someone who you think should be recognized for their kindness, or to purchase items that help the project to continue, including mini Ben’s Bells.

Oh, and here’s a link to the Ben’s Bells Facebook page.

Ben's Bells project

Ben’s Bells project



When knifting goes right

imageThose who craft may believe that they do it purely as an expression of love for their intended recipient.

Privately, it’s not ususual to grouse to one’s craft circle about gifting gone bad. In these instances, the gift wasn’t appreciated or went unused or, worse, was donated to a thrift shop.

In truth, we ought to be able to recognize that our handmade gifts aren’t for everyone, and if they end up in the bottom of the dog crate or at the Salvation Army, at least they are being used.

But, we don’t always rise to that level of understanding. We want to be thanked, praised, lauded, and generally recognized for our hours spent producing these wondrous handmade items. Sadly, what I perceived as uniquely beautiful, you, my beloved, may have found hideous.

But sometimes we get that validation we secretly wish for and more.

Today was one of those good days, when something I knit and then gifted (we’ll call it knifted, ok?) was:

  1. selected from my granddaughter’s closet by her to be her attire for the day;
  2. worn all day while the two of us were out and about;
  3. the object of four compliments as we wandered a museum and then did a little shopping together.

I have to admit it, it made me feel like a million bucks and you can be sure that I will be knifting for this girl for the rest of her life!

Lasting tributes to our Prescott 19

Here’s an idea for an immediate visual tribute to our Prescott 19: Change our town “P” on Badger/P Mountain to “19” for a year.

What looks like this now

P Mountain in Prescott AZ

P Mountain in Prescott AZ


Could look something like this in next to no time

19 seen at Brownlow Park

19 seen at Brownlow Park

Those small white stones at Brownlow Park probably only took minutes to arrange.

Decidedly a project for the young, repainting the “P” has traditionally been tackled by boy scouts or the senior class at Prescott High School as their gift to the city. It is hard, backbreaking work that a bunch of youth could accomplish in a day or less.

Other more poignant and artistic expressions of tribute will surely appear in the weeks and months ahead, and we can look forward to a more permanent home for the makeshift memorial which rose up at the Hotshots station house, but we could do this NOW.