Friday, January 3, 2014

Why am I so busy?

Thursday, 1/2/14 - 1/8/14 1/28/14 (10 days) 
Oliver Lee State Park, Alamogordo, NM (White Sands)
On the road again. It was so sad leaving Hidden Valley Ranch. It is such a friendly park without being overbearing. There are no fancy amenities...just a club house, cute laundry and the desert trails. There are just enough activities to break up your week, but not so much that I experienced social overload.
At each get together, we would make a new friend.
By the time I decide to write for the blog, it is late at night and I'm too tired. Why am I so busy? Maybe it's not so much busy, but other activities take priority over the blog. I've basically been doing only three things.
#1: Working on the dog rescue things on the computer. I guess with the new year, people are deciding to add a dog to their household. We've gotten many applications, which means much record keeping and email communications and contracts to be sent. I'm not complaining. That's good that so many people are looking to adopt a Setter.
#2: Surfing the internet. I've been reading RV blogs, and have added knitting blogs, which leads to new patterns.
#3: Knitting and crocheting.
That's it, but time consuming, some enjoyable & rewarding (crafts), and some tedious & rewarding (rescue).

We met up with our neighbors, Mike and Mary Anne for a New Year's celebration, get together, and farewell on New Year's Day. They just happened to have a bottle of champagne that needed to be consumed and shared. We were more than happy to help them out.

With great conversation and much laughter, we finished the champagne and moved on to our wine of choice.
Mike couldn't wait so he was drinking champagne and wine at the same time!
They even had cookies for all the dogs. Can it get any better than this? Sunny skies, cool weather, the company of dog lovers and wine lovers. Ahhhh.

M & M will be at Hidden Valley Ranch until March and then heading West. I hope we meet again in the future.
After I finish a project, if I still have yarn leftover, I like to use up that yarn almost immediately so I don't end up with a lot of partial skeins of yarn.
After knitting my advent lace scarf, I still have a little over 1 skein of Luna lace weight yarn left. A fairly easy way to judge APPROXIMATELY how much yarn you have left in the partial skein, is to weigh it on a postal or food scale.

Luna has 232 yards in a 25 gram ball.
So how much is 25 grams?
Easy peasy, just ask Google! In the search box, just type "25 grams equals" and Google will probably finish for you, but if not, "25 grams equals how many ounces". Answer:  .88 ounces. Wow, point 88, not even an ounce!

I love Google.
Divide 8.8 into 232 (yards) and come up with 26.3 which means each point/tenth of an ounce of yarn is equal to a little over 26 yards.
I weigh my full ball and it weighs .9 ozs. That makes sense since the label is still attached. I weigh my partial ball and it weighs .3 ozs.
3 x 26 = 78 yards in that partial ball...approximately.
Knitting daily goes even further. I explained how to determine how much yardage left on a KNOWN fiber. Knitting Daily gives instructions on how to determine APPROXIMATELY how much yardage according to weight and thickness/gauge of yarn.

I had a last minute craft purchaser at Hidden Valley Ranch. I "closed up shop", meaning took away the tub of crafts I was selling 2 days before Christmas. I figured if people were buying Christmas gifts, they had already done that. I get a knock on my door and it is Carol, an Airstream RV'r asking if I had more items to sell. She's a crafter herself, but with arthritis in her fingers, she rarely makes anything anymore, but can appreciate the work that goes into other crafter's projects.

Carol stopped over and basically wanted everything! She was very easy to please. She bought a couple of hats, requested a special order of a cowl and hat also. When she returned when I finished the cowl/hat set, I showed her some of the better items I've made. Meaning, things knitted with good yarn that needs to be hand washed. She fell in love with my Striped Cladonia Shawl. But I wear that quite a bit, so didn't want to sell it.
NOT the $60. scarf

She also loved the Lace Advent Scarf I just finished in Dec. It is truly a beautiful piece. She asked if she could purchase that. I said it's probably too expensive since her other purchases were only $5.-$15. each. I said $60. for the scarf. Sold! Her hubby opened his wallet and gave me 3 20's. Yes! The scarf money is for me, but all the other sales go to A&B English Setter Rescue.

 So while I was in the cowl making mood, I crocheted a buttoned cowl for Mike and Mary Anne, our Port Townsend, BBQ sharing friends, as a thank you.  It's been cold in New Mexico. M & M have two little doggies they have to walk and a cowl is just perfect for keeping the draft off your neck and blowing into your coat.

All this last minute crocheting has enabled me to use up a good chunk of my Lion Brand Homespun. I love this yarn and use it to make dog sweaters. But I really want to use it up to clear room. I've also started another MKAL (Mystery Knit a long). Just a quick cowl made with more LB Homespun.
I've decided to join in on some MKAL's more often. It's fun knitting and not knowing what the pattern will look like and then you see it slowly develop. It's like the polaroid photo only slower.
I've also finished my felted Ravelry bag, but won't post a photo until I iron it a little and maybe line it.
See? I've been busy!
On New Year's Eve, there was a pot luck finger food get together. Yum! We've been at Hidden Valley Ranch for 5 weeks, so feel very comfortable here now. We sat with M & M and Marge and Roy? We made some Irish Creme which is an annual winter drink we make and love to relax and sip with friends or in front of a fire. Since we don't have a fireplace (go ahead and rub it in Tom), we'll enjoy the Irish Creme with friends. It was a total hit! Below is the recipe.
1 can sweetened condensed milk
3 eggs
1 cup whiskey (calls for Rye, but...)
2 tablespoons chocolate syrup
1 pint half & half (calls for heavy cream)

Put first 4 ingredients in blender.
Blend 1-2 minutes.
Add cream or half & half. 
Blend 15-30 seconds just to mix.
Serve chilled.
Must be refrigerated and will last a couple of weeks. 
Of course it never lasts that long in our fridge. It is gone long before that.

We were in bed by 9pm. Of course we can still watch the ball drop because we still have Direct TV NY feed, so midnight in NYC is 10pm here.!

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