Sunday, December 25, 2005

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all of my friends and family!

Our snow has almost totally melted since I got home, but there is just a little bit sticking around to make it a semi-white Christmas!!

I've been busy running around trying to do everything I could....I finished my shopping up yesterday on Christmas eve! I thought that I was insane to go to the shopping mall yesterday, but it was actually almost empty and Izipped through th estores and lines....hmmm....perhaps I should wait until the last minute every year! lol

Okay, I am off to spiffy myself up for the upcoming days events and festivities! I hope that everyone had a wonderful and joyous Christmas!!

All the best to you and yours for the upcoming new year!!
Kimberly

Sunday, December 18, 2005

I've arrived!!!

Greetings from the snow filled wintery wonderland of Michigan!

I arrived in last night and so far no signs of jet lag.....aside from waking up several times and forcing myself to keep sleeping until about 5:30 this morning when I said "to heck with it" and got up and started unpacking!

Many thanks to everyone who has sent me little elf droppings! The generosity has left me speechless! I will be posting proper thank yous as soon as I am able, but right now I am on my way to a sleepover party at my sisters....my nephew Andrew told me this morning that I HAD to come over and that he would sleep on the floor so I could sleep in the bed!

Talk to you all soon - I promise!

Thursday, December 15, 2005

The countdown is on......

Well, we are just about under 24 hours now! In exactly 24 hours from the minute I am typing this I will be already sitting on the plane anxiously waiting to take of and go flying across the ocean to....Atlanta! Atlanta you ask with a funny question. Yes, I know Atlanta is miles from Michigan, but it was much more cost efficient to fly there and then fly up to Michigan than it was to fly to Chicago, New York or Washington DC first...I know, I checked! It adds just under 2 hours to my flight time, but the total 4 hours round trip saves me over 200 dollars....I am more than willing to sacrifice 4 hours for 50 per hour to stay in my pocket.....that means more Christmas presents and goodies that I can buy!

So I'll keep counting down the hours, minutes and seconds! And in 36 hours from now I will be pulling around the corner of my parents street and pulling into their driveway....oh wait, am I going home first or to my sisters to see the one person who thinks that Aunt Kim coming home is a bigger event than Santa Claus coming? Decisions, decisions! *grin*

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Questions answered....

I have had several comments and e-mails lately around the same subject....my profile description!

I am currently living and working in Brussels, originally from Michigan in the USA. Staying in Belgium until the end of 2005 and then its off to destinations unknown....probably Chicago once again but you never know!


I really don't know when I am moving back. Its kinda hard to articulate (even to myself) my thoughts and feelings on what I should do next. I have been unhappy with my job, thats no secret. I have a meeting on January 13th in Zurich to decide the fate of the project I have been working on along with, I guess my fate! To go along with this I will be having my mid-year / year-end review all happening at the same time with my boss so more decisions will be made then!

I know that if I stayed in Belgium things would be very different. Zori is moving back to Argentina and Kim is scheduled to move to Zurich in January.

But if I did stay, it would have to be for a different job / different roles and responsibilities. I can not keep doing this data mining and analysis role - I'm way too over qualified for it but the only reason that I am the one doing it is because I am so darn good with the systems pulling out the needed data (being a computer minor in college I understand how to write queries and macros and code and even small programs)

I think that I should have several options that I can explore.

The first being stay in my current position but with a role change from one specific project to overall finance coordinator / analysis for all of the European projects which was what my role was to be in the beginning.

The second being that I move back to the US. I would need to talk to two of my former bosses, Stuart and Pablo to see if they have any open positions on their team / know of any open positions. With Stuart, the job would be in the Chicago area, and with Pablo it could be in Florida, Latin/South America or even the Asia/Pacific region! Not so sure on the non-US options if I would even consider those.

And the third that I look for a different position in Europe - potentially Zurich, doing either finance or looking at a non-finance role! Several possibilities floating about out there I do believe.

Of course, there is always the option that I throw the towel in and quit Baxter and move back to Michigan and look for a job there with a different company. This one is the least likely scenario to happen! I really do like Baxter, and I just can not see myself moving back to Muskegon and finding a job that would keep me happy..Grand Rapids perhaps.

I really do miss all of my family and friends which makes being away so hard. But at the same time, if I was living in the US, there is no way that I would be able to take the 2 weeks in March to go on holidays to Florida, spend 1 week at home in the summer and then 3 weeks over Christmas...plus the other holidays that I have taken! but on the other hand if I was back in Chicago, folks could come visit me on the weekend, and I could go to Michigan on the weekends as well.

Okay, I think that I am done rambling now. Those are my options, and I will wait and see in January which one is going to be my future! The one thing that I do know is that I can not stay with what I am doing now....I would go crazy!!!!!!

Monday, December 12, 2005

A Different Christmas Poem

One of my very good friends is a K-9 Military Policeman at Fort Sill in Oklahoma. He sent me this forward and I thought to share it with everyone. Please take some time this Holiday season to remember those who have come before, who are now, and who will come after that serve their countries in peace time and war. Remember those who did not get to go home standing, and those who are still missing but never forgotten.

A DIFFERENT CHRISTMAS POEM

The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,
I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight.

My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,
My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.

Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,
Transforming the yard to a winter delight.

The sparkling lights in the tree, I believe,
Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve.

My eyelids were heavy, my breathing was deep,
Secure and surrounded by love, I would sleep.

In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,
So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.

The sound wasn't loud, and it wasn't too near,
But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear.

Perhaps just a cough, I didn't quite know,
Then the sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.

My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,
And I crept to the door just to see who was near.

Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,
A lone figure stood, his face weary and tight.

A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,
Perhaps a Marine, huddled here in the cold.

Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,
Standing watch over me, my wife, and my child.

"What are you doing?" I asked without fear,
"Come in this moment, it's freezing out here!

Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,
You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!"

For barely a moment I saw his eyes shift,
Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts.

To the window that danced with a warm fire's light
Then he sighed and he said "Its really all right,
I'm out here by choice, I'm here every night."

"It's my duty to stand at the front of the line,
That separates you from the darkest of times.

No one had to ask or beg or implore me,
I'm proud to stand here like my fathers before me.

My Gramps died at 'Pearl on a day in December,"
Then he sighed, "That's a Christmas 'Gram always remembers."

My dad stood his watch in the jungles of Vietnam,
And now it is my turn and so, here I am.

I've not seen my own son in more than a while,
But my wife sends me pictures, he's sure got her smile.

Then he bent and he carefully pulled from his bag,
The red, white, and blue... an American flag.

"I can live through the cold and the being alone,
Away from my family, my house and my home.

I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,
I can sleep in a foxhole with little to eat.

I can carry the weight of killing another,
Or lay down my life with my sister and brother.

Who stand at the front, against any and all,
To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall."

"So go back inside," he said, "harbor no fright,
Your family is waiting and I'll be all right."

"But isn't there something I can do, at the least,
"Give you money," I asked, "or prepare you a feast?

It seems all too little for all that you've done,
For being away from your wife and your son."

Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,
"Just tell us you love us, and never forget.

To fight for our rights back at home while we're gone,
To stand your own watch, no matter how long.

For when we come home, either standing or dead,
To know you remember, how we fought and we bled.

Is payment enough, and with that we will trust,
That we mattered to you, as you mattered to us."

Christmas Cookies

I hope that every ones weekend was great! I spent an easy day on Saturday around the house and a quick trip to go out shopping for some clothes - bought a lovely black turtleneck sweater and a really fancy top that would be cute for a fancy Christmas or New Years party!

On Sunday I invited Zori and Suzy over and we made Christmas cookies! We made oodles of cutout cookies and some thumbprint cookies which I can best describe as a round ball chocolate chip cookie minus the chocolate chips with frosting on it!

In the spirit of Christmas (and the desire that everyone else gain the 10 lbs that I am sure to gain with all of the sweets I am going to be eating) here is the recipe for Thumbprint Cookies - enjoy!!

Thumbprint Cookies Bake 10-12 minutes at 350°F

1 C margarine (2 sticks) 1/2 C packed Brown sugar
2 eggs (separated) 1 tsp. vanilla
2 C flour 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 C finely chopped walnuts

Mix margarine, sugar, vanilla & egg YOLK. Stir in flour & salt. Roll into balls (1 tsp) Beat egg white with fork. Dip balls into egg white and then roll in nuts (nuts are optional!) Place 2" apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Gently press thumb into center. Bake 10-12 mins until set. Cool and fill thumbprints with buttercream icing. (Makes 3 dozen)


Buttercream Frosting
1 pound of powdered sugar (1 box of Dominos is 1 Lb)
1 stick margarine (1/2 Cup)
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 to 1/2 C. milk

Cream margarine and vanilla together in a bowl. Add the powdered sugar and mix until creamy. Mix small amount of milk in until desired consistency. Stir in food coloring for decorating.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Holiday Fun and Games

Seen on Amy's Blog


Christmas Elf Name

My Christmas Elf Name is
Get your Christmas Elf Name at JokesUnlimited.com


Oh goodness....I can only imagine what the 577 bad entries are for...actually I have a very good idea about a few of them!


Christmas Naughty or Nice List

I am on the The Nice List

After checking the North Pole database I had :

2,008 nice entries
577 naughty entries
Check your name on the Christmas Naughty or Nice List at JokesUnlimited.com


Hey! Mind out of the gutter folks! My bad entries are for my road rage swearing while driving.....I learned from my momma and she ranks right up their with the best of them! Good thing that I don't drive much, or that number would be a LOT higher!! *grin*

More to be added later once I am home and not being blocked by work from accessing the Quizilla web site!

I got the snowflake blues!!!

First up - head over to Jessi's blog to read her posting of "A Crocheter's Night Before Christmas"

Second - here is my snowflake blues from last night: I'm in a funk...thats right folks I said FUNK!!! I printed off patterns of pretty snowflakes, then I went shopping to Carrefour for some glorious tea! Home was my next destination, to pull out my hooks, and I tell you my friends, I did just that! I brewed myself a cup of Christmas Tea, and settled down on my bed wrapped snug in my duvet. I looked at my hooks, I looked at my thread. I sorted through patterns, I scratched my head. I hemmed and I hawed....I stared at the ceiling. No matter my desire, my doing was gone! I looked deep inside, but I couldn't start hooking! I sighed and my thread hooks went onto the floor....and I reached next to the bed and pulled out my needles!! Now this was not right, I had snowflakes to make! But a scarf of fun fur was my project last night!

Third - well, my countdown is on its one week from today, I'll fly away to the land of much snow! I'm not sure why, but I'm trying to rhyme...it must be the season, there can be no other reason! I've not had a shot of cinnamon schnapps, no alcohol is in me, making me go pee! :) Bad, I know! But 7 days from today and I'll be leaving on that jet plane! Oooh....plane....thats 14 straight hours of crocheting time! *grin*

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Tis the season to be.......

Well, whats it gonna be...naughty or nice? I've been being nice so far, but things could always change! *grin*

I continue to slowly work my way into the holiday spirit! Last night I made Anise Rock Candy, a recipe that originated from my Grandmother and evolved thanks to efforts made by myself and my Aunt.

If anyone is interested in making some really yummy candy that is extremely easy, here you go!

Kimberly's Anise Candy

Ingredients:
3 3/4 Cup white sugar
1 1/4 Cup corn syrup
1 Cup water
1 full bottle of Anise flavoring
Food coloring of choice
Candy Thermometer

Directions:
Combine first 3 ingredients and boil to 300° F stirring occasionally

Remove from heat and add anise and desired fool coloring (Be CAREFUL it spurts when you add the Anise and coloring.)

Beat well and pour onto XXX sugar covered sheets.

Score the candy into bite size pieces with a kitchen knife once it starts to stiffen.

Cover with more XXX sugar.

Allow the candy to completely Cool and break into pieces, using the scored lines.

Store in airtight container.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

I've been trying......

Really, I have been trying!! Its just so darn hard to get in the holiday spirit! For YEARS I always had my Christmas shopping done on Thanksgiving. Honestly! I was one who hated to sit around waiting for it to get done, so I'd start early. Heck, I bought the main presents for my 3 neices in March this year. But here it is December 4th, and I have nothing else bough....nothing! And crocheting...Well, thats a lost cause I've decided along with knitting more of those blasted fur scarves!

Soooo, to get me in the spirit I've been sitting on my couch all day long with Christmas music blaring in my apartment, and 10 WIPS sitting in front of me....well, there were 7 to start and of course I just had to start a few others...falling behind here! I'm of the mentality that as long as I am working on things I'm making progress....do I really care that nothing is get completed because I knit 10 rows on one scarf, switch to another. Crochet another full skein on one scarf, make 4 more blocks for one afghan and then switch and make 2 blocks for the other afghan.

Well.....I did finish another 2 snowflakes, and tried the whole sugar stiffening deal on 4 of my completed flakes...oh ugh!!!! Talk about messy...and, well sticky! Has anyone used this method? Do the flakes really attract ants and other pests once they have dried? Do I dare send them out to folks if this is a possible side effect?

Oh! Another question - if I am sending tea out to a few folks, should I check with folks first to see if they use loose leaf tea? Do I assume that they do, and let them figure out what to do with it once they receive it, or do I go the over cautious route and send a tea thing-a-ma-bob with the loose tea to them????? Or do I not risk it, and be boring and send the not so yummy bagged tea that I have?

Okay, I am off to bed. I hope that everyone had a great weekend and a great upcoming week to all!! Just think - only 21 more days until Christmas! *grin*

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Pineapple Bell Pattern

As I've seen a few requests for the Bell pattern, I thought to post it for everyone!

http://members.tripod.com/CarolynMurphy/pinapbel.html

I woke up today at 6:15 to the beep beep beep of my neighbors alarm clock.....he is gone and left it turned on...oh joy! I called the super yesterday on it, but of course he could not unplug it like he said he would....incompetent buffoon! Can't wait until Monday when I get to chew his arse out since I will be awaken tomorrow morning at 6:15 as well! I went shopping and spent a small fortune on clothes, shipping materials, odds and ends for the Christmas wish lists at Crochetville etc etc etc

Came home and made snow flakes......lots and lots of snowflakes.....okay, perhaps not lots and lots but 10 is a good number of them! I tried several patterns. Once I get them blocked and find a way to stiffen them, I'll post some pictures up.

Next up on my agenda - going to the bar to have a few drinks. My best friend's Dad is getting married today. I was invited, but since I am in Europe it was slightly impossible to make it! Since the rest of my family is there (Mike has been really good friends with my Dad since before I was born!) I really need to celebrate the occasion, so I'll be having a drink or two from this side of the Atlantic!

Enjoy your weekend!!!

Psst - Jessi - it looks like my visit to Ann Arbor is a go! Will let you know the specific dates that I'll be there - probably after Christmas around the 27th or 28th - I need verify Stormy's day off.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Picture Update....volume one

Here are a few pictures of recent items - sorry that there are no London pictures yet, I will post some soon I promise! With not being able to see pictures at work anymore, posting them on my lunch break is no longer possible!




Here is a Thread Pineapple Bell that I did recently - the pattern worked up fairly easy with my only issue being starching! I did not have any small dixie cups so I improvised, and will probably re-do it once I am back in the US anyhow!



Next up is the scarf set that I made for my neice. It is in a fun fur purple with silver sparkles in it - I made a cabbage patch scarf to go along with it!




And finally is my Christmas Tea Calendar! I start drinking it last night...lets just say that day one was Yuck! It had cocoa, black pepper, ginger, cardomon (??), and a few other spices in it. I really did not read the package (in french) too well until I was talking on the phone a few minutes ago with my mom and I realized that it was supposed to be drank with milk....will try it again when I am back in the US (each day has 2 servings) to see if that improves it at all!

Have a great day everyone!!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Holiday Edition of Getting to Know Your Friends

Welcome to the 2005 Holiday Edition of Getting to Know Your Friends!
Stolen from Lori's blog and Amy's Blog

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate?

Egg nog….whats that? * grin * hot cocoa all the way!

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree?

Santa always wrap his presents….even the big ones

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white?

Colored light…the big old fashioned C-9s that suck up the electricity and cost a small fortune to light for the holiday period....hence the reason my father always gets a personal card from the electric company each year!

4. Do you hang mistletoe?

In between the dining room and family room….have not caught anyone under it yet…..I did teach my niece last year (at 14 months) to say “mis-toe” and when you asked her where it was she would go point at it!

5. When do you put your decorations up?

Thanksgiving time, although Christmas lights are started earlier due to the wish to avoid putting them up in a blizzard and falling off the roof!

6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)?

Cheesey hashbrown potatoes

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child?

Walking into Christmas Eve mass with no snow anywhere and praying super hard for some during the whole mass, only to walk out after mass had ended to find snow falling down and covering everything!

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?

First grade, a slumber party at Colleen Fitzgerald house….I don’t even remember her as I have not seen her in probably 20 years, but I still remember it was at her house!

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?

We always open gifts that we are exchanging with our best friends who have come over for Christmas Eve mass and breakfast

10. What kind of cookies does Santa get set out for him?

Thumbprints and Cut-Out cookies….with carrots left out for the reindeers of course

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it?

Have to love it!!! Although I would enjoy it more if it only fell on the trees, bushes and grass and left the sidewalks and streets bare

12. Can you ice skate?

I can indeed….its not always the prettiest, but I can manage to stay up on them!

13. Do you remember your favorite gift?

Ooooh….probably the Barbie motor-home

14. What's the most important thing about the Holidays for you?

Spending time with family and friends

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert?

Peppermint Oreo Dessert

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?

Christmas Eve……we always go to mass on Christmas Eve – my family and my friend Stormy’s family and then go back to my Parents for Christmas Eve breakfast, an old French tradition. We usually have waffles, eggs, cheesy hashbrowns, breads and for desert Peppermint Oreo ice cream dessert. This is usually accompanied by Verdi (a yummy, but cheap sparkling wine) and followed occasionally a shot or two when Grandma is not looking. Presents are exchanged and opened and the evening is rounded out with an exciting, and often blood letting game of Spoons….we play cut throat, anything goes but breaking the china hutch and chandelier type of spoons!

17. What tops your tree?

I received a Santa topper from my parents for my tree that is sitting in storage somewhere!

18. Which do you prefer Giving or Receiving?

I actually love to give more than receive, although that is close call there! I love seeing peoples reactions to their presents and am usually impatiently waiting them to get to mine.

19. What is your favorite Christmas Carol?
I have a few favorites:
Let it Snow Let it Snow Let it Snow (Mom, I’ve started singing it…hows your snow forecast looking?)
No Place Like Home for the Holidays
Fairytale in NewYork by the Pogues (kinda odd, but have to love a Christmas song that says “you scumbag, you maggot” and sings about drunks in the slammer…..bizarre, strange, and highly entertaining in a way that is wrong on so many levels)

20. Candy Canes! Yuck or Yum?

Yummy!!! I love candy canes in hot cocoa as well!

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

My giggle for the day

Hi! I had a great trip to London - even managed to buy some yarn - yay!! More on my trip later, but lets just say that Marvie's prediction of bad travel came true! Thanks for the curses Marvie! *grin*

I just received the funniest message that made me giggle! Not too long after I moved to Belgium 3 years back, I put up a profile on an expat site for foreigners living in Belgium. I have from time to time received messages from other expats but none as.....lets just say amusing as this one! :)

Here is what someone sent me:

U r really cute chubby and homely. As u hav written i dont wonder y u make friends so easily. I think i too shud be added to that list.


I laughed so hard when I read that....who would ever write and tell someone that they are chubby and homely along with cute?

Lets see here....homely is described as "Not attractive or good-looking, lacking elegance or refinement" I would like to think that is not me, could be wrong, but I really don't think so! And Chubby????? I might be slightly overweight and could stand to lose 15 pounds, but I would not classify myself as chubby!

Sorry bud, you are not being added to my list of friends!

Have a great day and I'll try to post some pictures and updates on my London trip later!

Shopping, football, and transportation fun!

***Ooops!!! I had written this and forgot to post....I am indeed blonde from time to time!! *grin*

I am back from my visit to London. Had an excellent time!

As foretold by Marvie, my transportation issues extended into the weekend (thanks Marvie - I told you I would blame you!!!) Arrived in London and the transport system there was messed up due to 2 deaths/injuries on the lines which has cancelled most trains and metros for a while. Okay, found a different train line and went from there. We dropped my gear off at Russ's and headed back to the train line to go back into London, only to find out that the next train was cancelled and that the train after that one was delayed - 45 minutes later standing on the train platform in the cold the next train arrived. Next day alls going well we get up, pack and make our way to the train and are making good time to the Euston station only to be told that due to a fire alarm at Bank that we were diverting to Tower Bridge.....not good! There is no easy way from Tower Bridge to Euston, so we jumped a cab trying to make it and of course arrived after our train to Manchester had left! *sigh* By this point Russ was saying that I was cursed! We were able to change our tickets for the next train and away we went to Manchester for the night.

We walked around Manchester for a bit, saw the Christmas market there (did not buy a thing) sat and had a few drinks and then off to the hotel. Alsl well the next day until we get to the train station and find out that we had to wait 45 minutes for the next train to Liverpool! We waited, arrived, went and saw Everton beat Newcastle.....I had issues rooting against my team, but since I did not want beer, food, cigarettes etc thrown at me I suffered moments of silent anguish while trying to act happy that Everton was winning and cheering for them....Russ said that I did a great job cheering and that I must have brought his team good luck.....Drat it all!!!!!!

Headed back to London via Manchester with not a single glitch or issue - yay!! Yesterday I spent the say shopping in London - visited the Oxford Street area and bought several books, tops, socks and misc odds and ends. Oh yeah, and soem yarn :) Did you think that I could pass by yarn? I went into John Lewis on Oxford Street - they have a nice little section in their with Rowan, Jaeger, Noro and other brands.

Made it back safe and sound last night, although after spending more than 15 hours on trains the past few days, I can happily say that I am done with any form of train travel for a while!

Friday, November 25, 2005

Upcoming arrival.......

Nah, I am not pregnant! But my younger sister is! Thats right folks, I am going to be an auntie yet again! There is a new bundle of joy due to arrive in the summer to my sister Denise and her husband Brian!

I found out yesterday but could not post about it in fear that my parents would read about it before they found out! Much to their dismay, I knew before they did!! My sister called me early yesterday to tell me the news and wish me Happy Thanksgiving. She did not tell my parents until later in the day when they went to her house for Thanksgiving! I just love being the first to know these things! *grin*

Congratulations Denise & Brian!!!

Oh crud-o-la! This means that I need to start crocheting baby things.....quickly! Okay, I know that I have until July, but cripes! So much to do already and now even more! Baby blankets - car carrier size and crib size.....a few sweaters / hats / mittens.......toys.....ooooooohhhhhh the possibilities are endless!

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving!

May everyone have a Happy Thanksgiving tomorrow and enjoy the time with family and friends! I will be thinking about all of you - how lucky I am to have met such a wonderful group of friends via the internet, as well as how lucky I am to have such a terrific family that has supported me in all of my crazy life! *hugs* to everyone!

Why I am not finishing projects....

That's it, Christmas is around the corner and I am being lazy. I would love to crochet love, really I would. But if I sit in the living room on my couch, my computer screen would be my only light aside from the streetlights outside. In another twist to my wonderful week, I come home and flip on my kitchen light....nothing, nada, zip and zilch once again. Not one of the 4 light bulbs goes on. I move across the room to flip on the living room light (kitchen and living room is basically just one big room) to see if perhaps the maintenance guy finally showed up to fix that one (its been out for 1.5 months now and all of my complaining has not solved the problem) and absolutely positively not a speck of light! Being the brilliant person that I am, I scurry over to the fuse box (I actually know where it is) and check all of the little switch thing-a-ma-bobs and all are in order. So, no lights for me I guess at all in the main portion of my apartment.

I retreated like a mole to my bedroom. After fortifying myself with a cup of white pear tea from Faith, I look around me and stare in wonder. Scattered around my bed and floor surrounding my bed is 74, please count SEVEN FOUR projects in various states of completion (and these are just the ones that have migrated to my bedroom - the living room is another story!!. Sheesh! To think I wonder why I never actually finish something, it must e because I am constantly starting something and then spending the next two months switching between that and the other projects, working away a little at a time but never actually bringing anything to completion!

I guess we know what I am doing tonight! My goal is to finish at least two of these darn projects, and finish the next section of the size 30 purse (which is slowly coming together!)

UPDATE: Well, it is a little after 12 and I do believe I was fairly successful tonight. I blocked & starched the 5 snowflakes I made yesterday. I finished the fun fur scarf and started and completed the matching fun fur dolls scarf. I finished the thread bell I was working on - I really don't like how the pattern turned out, but c'est la vie! I have that sitting on a plastic cup saturated with starch....I have a feeling that the starch is not going to be enough for this one so I'll need to either find some stiffener / glue here or wait until I am back in the US. I finished 4 rounds on the purse, almost a full section, but not quite there. Night night!!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

AAAahhhhhhhhhhhhh

That is it! I am either going to jump off the building or throw my computer off it....oh wait, its already dead so it can't get any worse! Yes, thats right my computer kicked the bucket again this morning! Came in, put it into its docking station hit the power button and nothing, nada, zip and zilch! According to the techy guys I've fried my mother board......not sure what you are thinking but I am taking this as a sign that I am not to work anymore!

As I sat here this morning waiting for the tech folks to get in, I was able to crochet two snowflakes and start a third one! Had some really odd looks as folks walked by, but whats a girl to do.....sit and stare at a blank computer monitor?

The tech guys were able to take my hard drive out and put it into a temporary PC while they work on mine - no data loss this time. The new computer has a slower processor and less memory so it is really really sllloooooooooowwwwwww!

Well, I am off to re-boot the computer - its frozen up and I need to re-boot and re-start my stupid report I am running - I think that it is a bit too big for the new computer to handle, but I have not choice but to keep trying - I have deadlines to meet here folks! Plus the new guy in charge of the project I am on is in tomorrow and I need to have some data to show him.....data is always a good thing!

Have a wonderful and problem free computer day!!

Monday, November 21, 2005

I'm singing the Fall Time Blues!

Okay, I know. I've been missing a lot. Not around, and when I am, I am not blogging much. Sorry! I've just not had the motivation - its been all I can do to keep crocheting, but since I have deadlines to meet I am trying to do at least that!

I am off this weekend to the UK to visit my friend Russ. We'll spend some time in London before heading up to Liverpool to watch a UK Football (soccer) match of Everton (his team) versus Newcastle (my team). Should be great fun! I am taking the Eurostar train over and going through the Chunnel under the English Channel - it takes just about 2.5 hours to get there. I'll come back on the Monday after spending the day shopping around London - I have a few things that I need to pick up there from favorite stores.

On the crochet front: I've finished all of the scrunchies for the swap - I really hope that Marnie likes them! I am almost finished with my ornaments for the ornament swap - I am adding in a few snowflakes and Christmas pineapple trees to the offerings which I need to finish up tonight hopefully. I finished my new scarf and am working on the hat to go along with it. A few little other odds and ends have been done, and I am half way done with the purse pattern I am testing... I can only work on it for so long at a time.

Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Check out Regina's post.....

Run....click as fast as you can...do not pass go and do not collect 200 on your way to Regina's blog to read her wonderful post about "Not your grandmothers crochet" (Dad, this includes you)

I'm all for channeling my crocheting and knitting ancestors who have passed over and now live in the giant free yarn shop in the sky (I can dream right???). I work now with the size 20 thread and wonder how anyone worked with the size 90, 100, 150 even!!! One day perhaps I will be able to, but for now, I am in awe of those who have and those who can!!

It is so true that many cringe when they hear the word doily....into the mind pops a dim room with one lamp lit and the curtains pulled tight. A smell of moth balls, cabbage and eucalyptus permeates the air. A fine layer of dust can be seen in places where a dust cloth can not reach. Everywhere you look a yellowing doily is displayed....the couches, chairs, tables, wall, mantle, bookshelves....and along with the doilies are a hundred other knicknacks that tell the life of the little old lady who sits in the rocking chair with gnarled fingers that have an embedded smell of ben-gay that grasp onto a pair of knitting needles or a crochet hook. Her eyes have become clouded with the years, her memory is not as good as it used to be, but without hesitating her hands move in a rhythm not forgotten that comes to her as easily as breathing as she waits patiently day after day for her next visitor.....

Monday, November 14, 2005

Monday, Monday So Good to Me

Monday, Monday
Can't trust that day.
Monday, Monday
Sometimes it just turns out that way.

On Monday morning
You gave me no warning
Of what was to be.
On Monday, Monday
How could you leave
And not take me?

Happy Monday everyone...have you realized that there are only 40 days until Christmas? That is 28 working days and 12 weekend....Better get busy shopping and crocheting! I have given up any hope of finishing half of what I wanted to get done for Christmas!

First up! Pin a hello on my new Frappr map - I would love to see where everyone is from!

Check out our Frappr!

Second - I am going crazy!!!!! I volunteered to be a pattern tester for a purse. Okay, not a problem, I can follow a pattern. But follow a pattern for a purse done in Size 20 SIZE 30 thread!?!?!?!?! I swear that my eyes are starting to cross!!! It is looking really good, and I have found some errors and typos in the pattern which is why I am testing it, but ugh! I will probably never volunteer to be a pattern tester again. There is the whole anal accountant side to me and having the errors in the pattern drives me nuts...even though my whole intention is to find any errors, when I do I spend hours looking at it and wondering if perhaps I am just reading it wrong, or I missed something in the last round or I am just plain awful at pattern reading and a 5 year old could figure it out faster than I am! lol deap breath.....hold it........exhale......one more time...... Thanks, I'm all better now!

Third - Hi DAD! Hope that your knee is starting to feel better...listen to the Doctors and to MOM and don't be pushing it!!! At the very most, I'll put the Christmas lights up when I get home in December...okay, so they will only be up for a short time, but it is better that than you being your normal stubborn french-canadian self and doing too much and ending back up in the hospital for another knee surgery! Now nod your head and say "Yes daughter, I will do as you, with all of your great wisdom that was gained when you hurt your ankle advises."

I do believe that finishes it up for Monday! I hope to find time to finish the purse by next weekend, along with two scarves that I am working on and a few little odds and ends that sill need to be done (scrunchies, ornaments, snowflakes).

Friday, November 11, 2005

Armistice Day or Veterans Day

Today in Europe is a public holiday. We all have the day off, shops are closed and not much is really happening. Why? Well, its Armistice Day of course! In the US, it was changed to be called Veterans Day after the end of World War II.

Armistice Day is the anniversary of the official end of World War I, November 11, 1918. It is for the armistice(a temporary cessation of fighting by mutual consent) signed between the Allies and Germany at Compi├Ęgne, France, for the cessation of hostilities on the Western Front, which took effect at eleven o'clock in the morning — the "eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month." The peace treaty was signed in the woods in a railway car which was destroyed during WWII.

While the holiday was originally set up to celebrate the end of the War to end all Wars, over time and especially after WWII is has changed to a holiday to honor those who have fought in a foreign or domestic war.

My family is rather a large military family. My father fought in Vietnam. My two Grandfathers were in WWII. My Great-Grandfather was in WWI. My GG-Grandfathers were in the Civil War....for both sides. I have family that fought in the French-Indian War, the Spanish War, the Revolutionary War and almost every other skirmish that happened on American soil....we did come over on the Mayflower after all. I really debated for a while joining the Military as my generation is the first one not to have any representation in the military.

I can not say that we have always believed in what we were fighting for, but we have done our duty to our Country and to our family and fought in wars at home and on foreign shores. I would like to say thank you to my family who has served...thank you for making it possible for us to sleep in our houses at night, walk the streets during the day and live a life where we are not in fear. Thank you to those who have laid down their lives for us in places often far away from those you love and were determined to protect.

In many parts of the world, people take a minute of silence at 11:11 as a sign of respect....will you join me in my minute of silence?

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Whew!!!! Lucky escape...or was it???

I have been told that I was "almost-in-danager-of-me-and-Swapna-dragging-you-into-conversation-screaming-and-kicking-faerie!" by Cordelia...Well I think that they succeeded with it since they have both gotten several comments out of me today! Sheesh! I try to save myself by sending a card and end up exchanging messages! *grin*

I promise to the both of you that I will get my computer back up and working as soon as possible!!! These evening at home watching the television have got to stop!!! Yup, instead of surfing the net, talking to friends and stalking some bloggers I've taken to crocheting while watching TV...since I don't watch TV except for once in a blue moon I easily get abosrbed into it (think its the whole moving picture concept) and my crocheting lays forgotten in my lap until the commercials! LOL Oh yeah, don't forget that European TV has a whole lot LESS commercials...like one for every 4 in the US! LOL Sporting events (i.e. Soccer) have one....at half time only no less!

I have a purse that I have to get busy crocheting as a tester for a fellow C'ville member, as well as the Ornaments to finish, a few more scrunchies, two doll blankets, 3 scarves and several yet to be determined Christmas projects......crickeys!!! Forget TV and Computer both!!! I need to get crocheting!

Mid-Week chuckle!

Well I have been a busy beaver today and trying to spread laughter aroudn the globe...I do believe that I've managed it fairly well!

If you've not seen this (my apologies - I've tried to send it to everyone I knew...I'm sure I missed someone (hence the apologies)) here it is:

Turkey Card

I am hoping to have my computer back functioning tonight and will then catch up on the blog reading / commenting, blog posting and of course and blog stalking that I have been remiss on doing lately!!

I can not figure out a way to get the Alien one posted on my blog (possible copyright violation????) Anywho, if you are desperate to see it once again (or for the first time if you've never seen it) let me know and I will see what I can do! *grin*

Have a wonderful Wednesday!!

Friday, November 04, 2005

Have a great weekend!

Well it does not look like I will have a computer for yet another weekend. They gave me back my computer with a new hard drive, but I can not find the CD to re-install my Adsl connection. I think that I let someone borrow it to install their connection but for the life of me I can not remember who!! I've sent mails out to all of the likely candidates so if I can find it I will be on-line this weekend.....if not, I'll see you on Monday!

I was able to get a few pictures downloaded! Here they are:

My Secret Pal Goodies from Jennifer:






The snowflake that I made while in Castlebar Ireland (I finally got it blocked this weekend)






And lastly a meme of what is on my desktop. The desktop is actually rather clean since I've not filled it up with files and folders yet! The picture is of the basilica of the Sacred Heart in Paris (Sacre Coeur):






Consider yourself tagged if you have not already been tagged by this meme! I know that I've seen it on several blogs the past few days and I can not remember who has not been tagged yet!

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Law School it is!

Jennifer has a quiz on her blog about what advance degree to get. Like her, I've been debating what type of a degree to get if I go back to school. I have been torn between going to get my MBA (My first degree was a BBA with a focus on Accounting) or going to Law School which is something that has been floating around in the back of my head for some time now.

Well, according to Blogthings, here is my answer to that question:

You Should Get a JD (Juris Doctor)

You're logical, driven, and ruthless.
You'd make a mighty fine lawyer.


Will it be Law School? That is still to be decided. I need to not only find the time, but the money, get accepted etc etc etc. With wanting to buy a house when I go back to the US, going to school also might put too big of a strain on my single income household considering my income is the single income! One day.........

Introducing.....Jennifer

For those of you who read my comments, you'll have noticed the comments from SP - my Secret Pal for the Fall Round over at Crochetville!

Well, I received my reveal package yesterday and I am so proud to be able to introduce everyone to Jennifer!! Take a glance over at her blog and say "howdy" to one awesome Secret Pal! I've been so blessed to have two great rounds of Secret Pals - first Jessica and now Jennifer...must be the J connection! *grin*

Once I have my PC back I will post pictures of the wonderful reveal package that Jennifer sent over to me! I loved it all much to her dismay.....she was hoping that I might not fall in love with the awesome tote that she made me, but alas for her I did and I will not be sending this one back to her!

The goodies in the reveal consisted of 5 skeins of wool from KnitPicks (woohoo) in Gossamer and Wool of the Andes. The aforementioned felted tote. A journal and a pretty sweet hand and nail care kit which should come in handy! I used it last night and my nails are all nice and shiny now!

Thanks Jennifer for being such an awesome pal!

Thumb twiddling and web surfing

Yup, thats what I have been doing for a second day here at work....exciting times eh?

I did come across a really cool quiz - I've seen and done similar onces before, but I always like them. Gives my mind a challenge and wasted a few minutes of my time as I tried to work out the solution!

The background on the quiz is that Albert Einstein allegedly created it and said that only those with an intelligence quotient of 98 percentile and higher should be able to solve it. In my opinion anyone with time, patience and the ability to reason and logic should be able to solve this, although it might come after immense frustration! You need to work this out based on what you are told to find what you are not told. A good place to start is to create a table with five rows and six columns - the first column will contain the categories - Nationality, House Color, Drink, Cigar Type and Pet.

Here is the puzzle:

There are five men of different nationalities living in a row of five houses, each house being a different color. Each man drinks a different kind of drink, keeps a different kind of pet, and smokes a different kind of cigar.

The Brit lives in the red house.
The Swede keeps dogs as pets.
The Dane drinks tea.
The green house is to the left of the white house.
The owner of the green house drinks coffee.
The man who smokes Pall Mall keeps birds.
The owner of the yellow house smokes Dunhill.
The man living in the house right in the center drinks milk.
The Norwegian lives in the first house.
The man who smokes Blends lives next to the man who keeps cats.
The man who keeps horses lives next to the man who smokes Dunhill.
The man who smokes Blue Master drinks beer.
The German smokes Prince.
The Norwegian lives next to the blue house.
The man who smokes Blends has a neighbor who drinks water.

Who keeps the fish?


I was able to solve this one, although it did take some thinking over a few of the answers. A little bit of head scratching and a lot of re-reading the clues! Keep at it and good luck!

I'll post the answer in the comments section.....no cheating and looking ahead!!! I can not wait to see how long it takes everyone to solve this!

Bonne Chance!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Snowman Ornament Patterns

Several have requested for the links for the patterns for the snowmen! Here they are!

The Marshmallow Snowman

TheLarge and Small Snowman (Large in Acrylic, Small in Thread)

Enjoy!!

Still no computer!!!

Well its Wednesday morning....the Tech guy is coming this afternoon to look at my PC....I hope that he can work the magic he is so very good at and get it back up and running once again! I miss it! :)

Still no sign of my reveal package from my Secret Pal (who has been awesome I must say!!!) I am waiting anxiously for it to find out who she is!!! With the holiday here yesterday and the offices closed on Monday, it is possible that they are just running late with it.....no fear, it will be here soon I hope! I am so excited I am stalking the poor recptionist..."Is it here...is it here?" She is about ready to ban me from the lobby I fear! lol

I finished the scarf....it went really quick! I have never finished something that big in one day, but I did it in one evening! I must be getting quicker with my crocheting finally! I really want to keep it for myself so I do believe that I will be going out and buying more wool in that color to make one for me! Can not show pictures (sorry) since I have revealed who I am to her and do not want her to see it before she gets it!

I am finalizing plans to go to the UK (London & Liverpool) at the end of November to visit Russ and go to a football (soccer) match! It will be great fun if it all works out! I think that will be my only trip before I go to the US in December for the Christmas holidays! I had hoped to make it to Portugal, Budapest and Austria this year, but it does not look like that will happen....maybe next year! :)

Enjoy the rest of the week! Apologies for not commenting on many blogs....I am way behind without having a computer to use at home!

Monday, October 31, 2005

Computers stink!!!!!!!

Well my weekend was fairly eventful......spent Saturday shopping, only to come home and boot up my computer and receive the following error message:

Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt: \WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\CONFIG\SYSTEM


Not good news here folks! My poor little laptop is suffering, and there is no one who can fix it for me until at least Wednesday.....if it is even fixable!!! I am praying that the tech guys can do something with it and at least get my files off it! If they can save my files, I'll happily have them totally erase the hard drive and re-build it! Keep your fingers crossed for me that some good news will happen!

I am in the office today so I could use my old spare laptop. Unfortunately it is too old to install my ADSL drivers on it, so I can not take it home with me and use it from there. It can still hook up to the office network which is what I am doing......a day off and I am in the office.....yuck! :)

I did take the down time from the computer to crochet some. I started on the doll blankets for my nieces, as well as another scarf and more ornaments. I am really liking the snowman marshmallow looking dudes - quick, easy and cute! I also started a scarf for my Holiday Gift Pal....not a hundred percent certain that I will send it - I am not really liking the pattern that much, but I love the yarn! Its acrylic (yes, ugh) but it is so soft I could not help but pet it after buying it on Saturday over and over again. I do need to contact her and see if she would mind receiving it a bit late....I can send it from here, but postage will be around 35 dollars for a package that size/weight! I am planning on flying home for Christmas around the 15th or 16th. I could easily mail it express the day I get home, but it might cut it close for receipt for Christmas. (Just looked, express mail, next day guaranteed is actually cheaper by 7 dollars to send the package!! Lets hope she will let me wait...its only 7 but then I could be sure that it would get to her!)

Oh, and I somehow managed to chip my front tooth. Its barely noticeable, but I can feel the rough edge on it....yet another thing to get taken care of while home in December! To make matters worse on it, its my real tooth and not the bridge tooth! I am hoping that they can just smooth the edges or something!

Friday, October 28, 2005

Yes, I am crocheting

Well its been a little bit since any sort of updates on my crocheting! I have been doing some, and have actually been fairly busy, although looking at my finished objects it does not appear to be so!

First I have been working on one of Deneen's Marvelous Totes - a little gem made out of wool and then felted in the washing machine. Well, I am still in the process of trying to get it to felt. Its being a wee bit stubborn in that department! Here is the before and after the first attempt through the washer:


Next up, Christmas Ornaments! (No, I am not turning into Grandma, Dad. I will not be handing them out at Christmas and crying when they are not on the tree / table / wall / where ever else she thinks they should be) I have been busy experimenting with more patterns and doing the snowman again in thread. Here are the results, plus a size comparison of the original snowman and the new snowman versus a book of my Dad's that I am currently reading.


My first scrunchie, done in the same wool as my felted tote. Matches my shirt fairly well! I do believe that this one will be staying in my possession....you should always keep your first! :)


And finally, since I have been a little bit forgetful about Travelling Thursdays, here is a shot of the skyline in Cologne, with the Cathedral in the middle!


My plans for the weekend are unknown at this point. For sure I will be doing some crocheting, although how much remains to be seen! I still need to do three of the fur scarves, two doll blankets, one baby blanket, several additional ornaments and lets not forget more scrunchies!!!!!

Have a good weekend everyone!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Hmmm...not so sure on this one!

Take the quiz: "Which Random Irish Gaelic Phrase Are You? "

Pog mo thoin
Pog mo thoin - 'Kiss my ass.'You're one tough bastard, and if anyone doesn't like it, they can kiss your ass. You enjoy fighting and causing grievous bodily harm. Hey! What are you lookin' at, punk?


First, I grabbed this quiz from Lynlee's blog.

Second, as some background info, this was the first Irish phrase I learned from my Irish boyfriend, and about the only one that I really remember from my year of living there!

Third, I just do not think that it fits! I hate pain, avoid confrontation unless I am pushed to it or feel that it is just the right thing to do. I can have a temper and do swear (especially in the car) like a sailor sometimes.

Although I must say, I am who I am, and if someone has anything wrong with that and thinks that I should have to change, well they can Pog mo thoin! *grin*

Monday, October 24, 2005

Pretty smart eh? lol

Well, I guess that college education of mine did pay off...I could pass 8th grade math! Although to be honest, on a few of the questions I took an educated guess and went with my first instinct and resisted the urge to go back and change any answers....good thing!

You Passed 8th Grade Math

Congratulations, you got 10/10 correct!

Waving hello!!

Hi everyone! Miss me? I can not believe that I've not posted anything in almost a week! Its been crazy here! My training went really well - lots to do now because of what I learned! As if I did not already have enough on my plate to do!

Friday night I went to my friend Genevieve's for our monthly dinner. Had a nice time until I had to leave to go to the train station....why the train station? My friend Russ who lives in London took the train over for the weekend to visit! We had a really nice time together. Saturday we drove around Belgium - I took him to Waterloo so her could see the hill and Lion monument, and then we drove on down to Mons where they had a horse show in their Grand Place....not the reason that we went, but nice to see!

Sunday we managed to get going at a more decent time and we drove the 2 hours to Cologne Germany. Saw the Cathedral there, walked around the town some and then found a nice Irish pub where we could watch the football matches. Happy to say that my team, Newcastle, won their game 3-2 over Sunderland and while Russ's team, Everton, did not win, they tied 1-1 against Chelsea which is the best team in the Premiership.....Everton is currently ranked last! Great job for them!

We drove back to Brussels last night, and I dropped Russ off at the train station this morning while on my way to work!

Well, that was my weekend. Now yet another fun week at work! I have my tea swap packages all set and ready to be mailed out! Along with my reveal package for my Secret Pal! I hope to be able to get to the post office tomorrow or Wednesday at the latest!

Promise not to tell? I signed up for another swap! Bad me, I know! But Cordelia is hosting a Scrunchie Swap so I just had to jump in and join...especially since my hair is growing out so well! 2 years now since I last had a major haircut!

Ta ta for now! I am off to work on the pile of things to do that seems to be growing at an alarming rate here at work! Have a great week!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Mid week update.....nothing exciting

Happy Wednesday!

My week has been flying by it seems! I really dislike having to get up at 6:30 everyday so I can leave in time to miss traffic on my drive to Lessines in the middle of the Belgian countryside.....lets just say I see lots of cows every day!

The training is going good so far and is picking up in terms of being interesting after starting out with what was for me a refresher course on a software package I already knew! I really am learning a lot and even better, what I am learning will have good marketing value for my resume should I decide to ever leave the company! I am not planning on leaving them, but returning with them to the US probably, but I will keep working for them.

I read a disturbing article about women professionals. it seems that due to the growing trend of going to university, wanting to start and focus on a career, gaining more high profile positions, choosing to work in other locations etc etc etc has led to an increase in woman who are getting married later in life, not having children, choosing often to have kids via artificial insemination at a sperm bank........ I really do not want to be another statistic in this growing trend......anyone know a nice guy late 20s to mid 30s?? *grin*

I am over half done with my thread snowman..... I like the design in the acrylic but I am not liking it too much in thread....pain in the butt....no, wait, that's a pain in my fingers. I thought that my finger was going to go numb from the number of time that pesky tiny metal hook bit into it.....started to resemble a pin cushion...nah it looked like a thimble with lots of little dimples in it!!! I will persevere, finish the one and probably not finish a second one...unless he turns out so darn cute that I can not resist making more, even with the pain!

I am feeling a bit bad about my secret pal package - I have not found the time to finish it up and get it mailed out - it does not look like this will happen until at least next week! This weekend is filled up because I have a friend from London coming to visit and we are going to travel and see possibly Cologne Germany and part of Belgium. Should be good fun and nice to catch up.

Wow.....looking back, the word "I" was used 20 times....that's a whole lot about me! So hows your week going?

Monday, October 17, 2005

What Kimberly Needs......

I have been reading several blogs today doing a meme about needs.

Heather's Needs Kari's Needs Deneen's Needs Natalie's Needs

So the basic concept - go to google and search on your name plus needs in quotations i.e. "Kimberly needs" You're supposed to post something like the first 5, but these are the ones that I found....interesting!!

Kimberly needs to eat something and keep her ugly mouth shut, she is so superficial and can't keep her legs closed. ***I think they got that backwards on what I need to do!!!***

Kimberly needs to continue sitting in the waiting area ***I hate waiting***

Kimberly needs a woman in her life ***Oh really? Imagine that....As long as its a personal maid***

Kimberly needs all five of her riders around her at all times! ***5 at all times.....Kinky***

Kimberly needs to get the media on her side, she seduces an overeager
newscaster with a line from a cheesy porn movie ***That means I must have watched the porn film to begin with.....and why am I in the media??***

Kimberly needs help in dealing with the situation with Rick ***Who is Rick????***

Kimberly needs to hitch a ride to the park ***I'll catch the next tram***

Kimberly needs to take some chances and mix things up a little....she also needs to shut up shut up ***Why does everyone keep telling me to shut up?***

Kimberly needs a stable environment to help her address her problems ***Oooohhhh - I got problems!!***

Kimberly needs Professional Help, Again! ***I had help a first time????***

Kimberly needs her mouth washed out with soap for her bad language ***I do not have bad language! Putain!***

Kimberly needs a lot of TLC and I know you're the one who can give it to her, but for gods sake chain her to that bed ***Chains and a bed.....sounds interesting***

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Weekend catch-up

Oh goodness! Its already almost midnight and I have not even started getting my things together for my training course tomorrow! I will be in training all week at one of our plants in Lessines Belgium, about 45 minutes away! I rented a car so I could drive out there all week.....oh joy!

I've been busy this weekend and have finished two projects - I had hoped to finish more, but two is better than none!

The first is a cream scarf that I've been making using the Caron Jewel box that my summer pal Jessica sent me - I really love this yarn, and love how the scarf turned out! I need to add a fringe or something more to it, but here is the current state:

I also finished a snowman ornament in worsted acrylic. I love the pattern and will try it next with size 10 thread. The buttons on the snowman are some that Mimi sent me with my thread order a while back - they look perfect on Mister Snowman!


Here are the pictures of my finished squares, and close-ups of a few of my favorites:



Next on the list of pictures is the wool that I bought in Ireland. One massive skein of Tivoli Serene in a blue colorway and 3 skeins of Baby Delight in a really nice pink - white colorway. I've started to work the baby yarn up into a Star Afghan - it is working up nicely and is very soft!


And finally, a glimpse of the current status of the tea swap (yes, I am addicted to swaps everyone) and what my poor ironing board has turned into! I think that I have gone a bit overboard on the tea I am sending out, but there are so many kinds that I want to share with my partners! I have written the brewing suggestions on each of the loose leaf tea zip-locks so my partners know how long to brew each cup. I still need to get to the store to buy some chocolate to send with each!

Friday, October 14, 2005

Swap Updates!

Well, I've been busy as always with Swaps and the like over at Crochetville. Actually a little bit too busy at times! I keep fearing that I am forgetting to do something, but can not think of what it is! Eeek!

Anywho, here is an update on the status of my swaps:

Stitch Marker Swap - Have received markers from 3 of my 4 partners (thanks so much again - I love them all!!). I have finished creating mine, packed them up and as of this afternoon, mailed them off to their recipients....I hope that they all like them! I was so nervous about one set getting crushed that I got creative and packed them in a mint tin...hey, whatever works right??

Blue Squares Too Swap - I am FIANLLY done with all of those pesky squares and tying in those little ends! I stopped on my way home tonight and bought tags for the squares, so I spent 30 minutes filling those out and attaching them to the squares! I should be able to get to the Post Office again tomorrow morning and get those mailed out as well!

Autumn Secret Pals - I have been having a blast with the Secret Pals! I am so glad that I signed up for a second round! I can not wait to find out who my SP is! I am in the process of putting together the reveal package for the person that I have as a SP - I really wanted to make several items for her, but have ran out of time! I did pick up some awesome yarn that I sooooo badly want to keep for myself....I will be good and send it on to her though!

Tea & Coffee Swap - I am already having fun with this swap, and its only just started! I've been sending e-mails like crazy out to my various partners (I am sure that they are all getting sick of hearing from me! Lol). I bought some items tonight on my way home and spent some time tonight dividing the loose leaf tea into smaller portions and gathering up the other tea that I have. I think that I have gone a bit overboard on the teas that I am sending! And I have not even gotten out to buy any chocolate yet! (did you think that I could send tea without sending chocolate?????)

Ornament Swap - I am still waiting to find out the names of my Swap Partners. Once I know, I will begin to crochet like a mad woman in order to get them all done in time! I am still searching for some patterns to use - have some ideas in my head, but finding all of the materials I want will be a challenge!

Holiday Gift Exchange - This one will be happening in November / December time frame. No partner yet! :)

Scrunchy Swap - I am still debating on joining this one....would be fun and scrunchies are very practical.....especially since I've been in the process of growing my hair out for almost 2 years now!


I think that is all of them.....I hope that is all of them.....

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Happy Birthday Daddy!!

Happy Birthday Dad!!

I am so lucky to have been given two such wonderful parents. Both you and Mom have always been there for me, ready to cheer me on as I tried whatever I put my mind to, and ready to dry my tears on those occasions when I fell - telling me to get back up and try again!

Than you so very much for all of your love, support, guidance, opinions, belief in me, caring, nuturing and at the end of the day, thank you for just being my father and my friend!

I love you Daddy!

Your Princess

Sheer boredom = random quizzes

Extra, Extra! Read All About it! Sheer boredom results in finding random quizzes to take!

Well, They got the travelling part right! * grin *

Your Hair Should Be Pink

Hyper, insane, and a boatload of fun.
You're a traveling party that everyone loves to follow.


I think that this one is actually fairly correct for me! Well, I don’t always say whats on my mind…I hold too much inside at times and I hate to say “No” to anyone, even if inside I am screaming with frustration on how I would get everything finished in time!

How You Life Your Life

You have a good sense of self control and hate to show weakness.
You say whatever is on your mind. Other people's reactions don't phase you.
You're open to new people and friends, which makes you a pretty popular person.
You tend to dream big, but you worry that your dreams aren't attainable.


* Giggle * Just wrong……enough said! LOL

Your Outrageous Name is:

Betty Humpter


Hmm…I was indeed the second born, and I am an accountant…

You Are Likely a Second Born

At your darkest moments, you feel inadequate.
At work and school. you do best when you're evaluating.
When you love someone, you offer them constructive criticism.

In friendship, you tend to give a lot of feedback - positive and negative.
Your ideal careers are: accounting, banking, art, carpentry, decorating, teaching, and writing novels.
You will leave your mark on the world with art and creative projects.

Monday, October 10, 2005

BTW - the Irish are mad!!

Forgot to mention in my last post and I figure that it deserves its own post. As you might recall, I was taking off to drive through the countryside in County Mayo.

Off we went, driving on the wrong side of the road (the left) on the wrong side of the car (the right) with a stick shift. Great fun, and like riding a bike - you don't forget once you've done it.

Anywho, the Irish speed limits have all changed from Miles to Kilometers since I last drove there due to the EU I believe it was. Anyways, picture the road from my last post - here it is again:



Looks like your typical country lane, kinda small, no shoulder to speak of, in the picture there are at least a little bit a side to the road, which often is not the case as the grass is replaced by hedge rows, rocks, boulders, fences, bridges etc.

Being the oblivious American to metric speeds, I toodled around at the given speed limit of 100 kilometers per hour on these narrow, windy country roads. Today I decided to see what 100 kph is in miles per hour....would you believe that it is 62 mph? There are highways in America that are not that fast (oh how I love to drive through Indiana (course, it might have changed, but it was 55 when I lived there)) and this is a narrow road with blind corners, in a country where it rains a lot so the cement is often slick.....and the Irish wonder why the fatalities on their roads are so high????

While out with friends we were told over 240 this year alone.....and there were at least 6 this weekend while we were there! This is a country the size of Maine!

The 2 lane divided motorways in Ireland only have a speed limit of 120 kph (75 mph)! Not much difference when you consider the difference in driving conditions on the two!

I've been a wild rover for many a year....

Well, my roving days are done.....for at least 2 weeks! :)

Ireland was great! We were fogged into the Brussels airport on our way there, so we were a good 2 hours late arriving into Dublin. We rented a car and away we went off into the countryside! I drove the first day out there - had a little Ford Focus that drove really nicely...oddly enough it was easier to drive and shift than the BMW that we have driven here in Brussels. I think the whole 4 days I only stalled out twice - once during a construction stop when I was not paying attention in the stop-go traffic and a second time at a corner when turning!

Here are a few pictures from our voyage around. They include - a view from the half way point on Croagh Patrick (Mt. Patrick), the mountains around County Mayo, Irish mountain sheepies (the pic of me with them seems to have gone AWOL), the typical Irish "traffic jam" as a farmer moved his cows from one field to another, and a view of moi and one of the 4 rainbows that we saw (what is Ireland without rainbows, pots of golds and leprechauns - if you look closely to the left of this rainbow you can make out the beginnings of a second rainbow!!)



Now, what I am sure that you have all been waiting to read...I found a yarn shop and bought WOOL!!! I bought a giant skein of a neat navy blue wool that has variegation's in it - the lady told me it was for knitting only, but I don't see why I can not crochet with it! I also bought 3 skeins of a soft pale pink color to make a baby blanket for an unknown baby! I know enough people in the baby making time of life that someone is bound to get pregnant with a girl....so long as its not me, all will be good! :) I have to still unpack - will try to post a picture of the wool later.

Mail update: Huge thanks go out to Jessi for sending to me the Family Circle easy crochet mag - it was waiting for me today when I got into work! Can not wait to get home and sit down with it for a read!

Off I go to read some blogs.....with over 200 posts waiting to be read, I do not think that I will be able to comment on everyones blogs...apologies, but at least I will be reading them all!

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

What is Crocheting????

Thanks to Sarah for introducing me to Googlism!

Since she searched out what Knitting is, I of course had to search out what Crocheting is:

crocheting is for everyone
crocheting is my stress reducer
crocheting is a passion of mine
crocheting is one pastime that prisoners may undertake while in their cells (hence Martha's poncho LOL)
crocheting is very easy
crocheting is still a popular pastime for women and some men too
crocheting is a wonderful craft/art
crocheting is one of the most fun and interesting types of needlepoint
crocheting is just plain fun
crocheting is like an art
crocheting is one of the easiest crafts to accomplish
crocheting is used to make all types of things from roses to decorative towels
crocheting is beautiful and very creative
crocheting is a deep passion for me
crocheting is not just for grandmas
crocheting is cool
crocheting is how to hold the hook
crocheting is so easy and rewarding that you may become obsessed and find yourself doing it in all sorts of odd places such as the subway or restaurant (Who me? Nah, no way!)
crocheting is many different things to many different people
crocheting is a reference to everyday work
crocheting is a wonderful hobby
crocheting is an interest of mine
crocheting is a nice and peaceful pastime that is traditionally seen as something fit for ladies
crocheting is still going strong
crocheting is a dying art (I don'so)
crocheting is more satisfying than sitting behind a computer screen
crocheting is about the only thing i can do
crocheting is my art
crocheting is kinda like knitting but its not
crocheting is my main passion besides my husband
crocheting is centuries old
crocheting is my meditation and i never cease to be amazed at the peace it gives me when i devote sufficient time to it
crocheting is becoming a lost art
crocheting is great

Some I agree with, some I don't. For shits and giggles (can I say that on here???) I did "What is Crochet"

crochet is only fun until someone loses an eye (huh? is someone crocheting differenetly than me?)
crochet is dead (really. I had not noticed)
crochet is back
crochet is a "simple" technique and "surely must" have been discovered earlier
crochet is fun
crochet is its own art form
crochet isn't work
crochet is cool
crochet is done very often for monetary purposes (Really? whos getting paid decent money?)
crochet is an easy technique that can have stunning results
crochet is derived from the middle french word croc or croche (sounds like a bunch of croc LOL)
crochet is a 1958 graduate of louisiana state university with a degree in art education (huh???)
crochet is more popular than ever with great new stitches
crochet is certainly an art form

How can I wear that costume????

Mimi posted a comment on how I could wear the Geisha costume...Frankly, she is right! Now, lets put this into perspective. I am on a slouchy day 5'6 on a stand up straight day 5'8. Add to that what looks to be 3 inch platforms with an additional 3 inch heel, that makes me 6'2. How the heck do you walk in those shoes? I have issues with my 3 inch heels lately (darn cobblestones!!) I would be a walking disaster waiting to happen...Add to it that really short (and tight) skirt which might look just a wee bit odd with my slightly out of shape thighs...nu-uh! Cute as it may be its not my ideal Halloween Costume!

I am flying back to Ireland tomorrow. It is Zori's birthday and we are renting a car and taking off for the west coast. Do you know what that means? Lots of sheep and the really high potential for YARN!!!!!! And not only yarn, WOOL!!!!! I can not wait! Now, lets just hope that I remember how to drive a stick shift car on the WRONG side of the road! Eeek!! It should be an adventure to say the least...especially since its me and Zori - things never go exactly as we plan!

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

My Halloween Costume

I saw Halloween Costume quizes on several blogs today, including Bron's, Mia's and Kari's....here are two of my results!

china
You Are A....Dragon Geisha!
-relaxed

-peaceful

-sweet


What's Your Halloween Costume? .:with pics:.
brought to you by Quizilla


Your Head Turning Halloween Costume Is
Fairy-Licious Vamp

Picture Pages, Picture Pages

Time to get your Picture Pages, time to get your crayons and your pencils! (Are y'all singing along with me here???)

Here are the pictures of the recent crocheting results (proof that I am crocheting) and two pictures of me and my parents in Rome. More pictures of Rome to come! I promise! :)

Sorry for the naked CPK - that is Christina Ann my very first CPK that I received from my Grandmother way back when! I asked my mother to bring her over so I could use her as a sizing model for the clothes and accessories I am making for my nieces Christmas Presents! Unfortunately when I told my mom to bring her along, I neglected to inform her that she should have some clothes on, so my mother brought her as was - naked as a jay bird with the exception of a beaded necklace...my kinda gal - goes nowhere without her jewelry!



Monday, October 03, 2005

I'm back from Rome and still alive!

Just a quick check in to say hello. Rome was great - I was sick and not feeling 100% but I had a great time none the less! Pictures will be coming - I promise!! Only disappointment was my inability to find any yarn - had I been a sewer or quilter I would have been in heaven!! The fabric shops were amazing!

Crocheting - I finished two doilies - one of which I must have frogged about 50 times - it just did not want to get finished! I sat on the couch yesterday and whipped together two fur scarves for my nieces for Christmas for the dolls that I bought them - they match the scarves that I made for them to wear!

I received the color cards from Knitpicks that I ordered after talking with Jessi - I love them!! I can not wait to plan my first purchase from them!

I also received the stitch markers from Kathy - again, will post pictures later - thanks Kathy!! I really like them!

That's it for now - short and sweet! I am taking my parents out to dinenr tonight to Le Fruit De Ma Passion - my favorite french restaurant - I hope that they like it!!!

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

When to start 'throwing my toys out of the pram'?

Okay, question for you all - When do I start 'throwing my toys out of the pram' as my former boss Ian would say? I like to play fair and try not to be confrontational - I am rather an easy going laid back person. Except when I feel that I have been cheated, scammed, taken advantage of etc etc etc

Way back at the end of July / beg of August I saw someone at a site I belong to (not naming it, but I am sure y'all can figure it out) posting that she had some patterns for sale. A few of them looked interesting, so I sent her a message asking about them and the final cost incld postage. We came to an agreement and I posted a paypal pmt to her which she received. She sent me a message back on August 5th:

Got the payment... will ship soon as it posts to my account. It says 3-5 business days but rarely takes that long. I would say probably Monday or Tuesday.

I have your US address so will ship to that.

Thanks!!

And that has been it. No news from her on the actual mailing, nada zip zilch. I've sent her two PMs one on the 31st of August which she never answered and one again today. Both messages have been very nice messages asking her for information on the mailing. When should I start to get bitchy here? She has posted a few times on her blog and has been to the forum but has not posted anything since the end of August.

Lost cause? Or should I start being a little bit more vocal which, when I need to be, I am VERY good at doing!

Okay, off home to pack for the flight to Rome tomorrow morning! Here is keeping my fingers crossed that I find a nice yarn shop in Rome to spend a little bit of moolah in!

UPDATE: Following the advice of Jessica & Regina, I went over to the blog to leave a message. On her most recent post there is a message also from someone else inquiring as to where her pattern is! I guess I am not the only one! I did leave a nice little message - I was very polite!

Just checking in to make sure that all is still going well! I hope that you will be able to get the patterns that I bought from you in the mail soon!! Merci!!

Monday, September 26, 2005

Sunday in Paris.....Monday at work

Had a great time this weekend with my parents! Showed them around Brussels a little bit on Saturday - took them down to the Grand Place, to see the Mannequin Pis (little boy statue who they dress up on various occasions) and of course to try a Belgian Waffle!

Here are some pictures - enjoying the waffle and the Mannequin Pis dressed up as Asterix, a Belgian cartoon character!



Sunday morning we got on the Thalys high-speed train to Paris and One hours and 25 minutes later we arrived! I spent the day showing them around the city - as my Dad injured his knee before they came (he will probably have to have surgery to repair it) we mainly took one of the double Decker Hop on Hop off buses. The nice thing about visiting Paris so often is that I know where all of the nice public restrooms are! :) While waiting with them to buy souvenirs, I spotted the cutest magnet - which of course I had to get one!! Here are the pics of us at the Eiffel Tower and my magnet which is on my computer stand here at work!



Speaking of work, I had a wonderful day of mail arrive here! Look at what was waiting me when I showed up this morning:



First, my next set of stitch markers from the Stitch Marker Swap at Crochetville from Juli. I absolutely love them Juli - thanks so very much!! Thank you also for the pattern sheets!

Second, a wonderful little surprise from Jessi! A wonderful postcard of Michigan to make me homesick and remember what I am missing! :) A cute Kimberly name plate and four AWESOME stitch markers! They are wonderful!! Thank you so very much for sending them to me!

And last, but not least, from Marvie I received a wonderful mailing of beads and earring wire to help out on my Stitch Markers that I am making for the Crochetville Swap! Thank you so very much Marvie! They arrived safe and sound - you are awesome!

I do believe that is it for now! I must get to work and then leave to go pick my parents up at the train station! Have a wonderful day!