Devine site

A little bit about my day, my family, and my knitting.

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Showers and Shawls

 The day finally arrived!! My coworkers and I threw a surprise "Groom's Shower" for Shawn, our fellow kindergarten teacher who is getting married tomorrow, May 1. He is such a great guy and we thought, "heck, we go to showers for every teacher/staff who gets married or pregnant...why not for Shawn?"  It was even more special because Shawn had had a motorcycle accident in October and almost died; he recovered (still is in therapy) and returned to work 3 weeks ago....but....totalled his car two weeks ago!!! Yes, I asked Michelle, his fiance, if she was SURE she wants to marry him. Guess she's a glutton for punishment (she was riding with him in each accident...luckily, except for some foot damage, she's ok). The shower was a complete surprise, held just after a staff meeting. Shawn and Michelle's moms were there, and so was Michelle. I made a "tool box" and every brought a little tool or kitchen gadget for it (in lieu of a "wishing well"). The cake and paper goods were Bob the Builder motif:

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It was so cute and a lot of fun. Here is Shawn, Michelle sitting in front of him, and the rest of the kindergarten teachers, from L to R...Jessica, me, Shawn, Wanda and Pam. This is the best group of kindergarten teachers I have worked with at this school. Though all have been nice, we are a very cohesive team. Gerry and I are looking forward to the wedding tomorrow so we can dance up a storm!

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     Today was THE DAY!!! The day that our Secret Pal 4 buddies were revealed, and, right on time, there was a package from my pal...she is Jessica from Brooklyn, NY (YEA, NY), 27, and so sweet. She sent me a pair of birch size 15 needles, hand-space dyed cashmere yarn, and the book Yiddish with Dick and Jane. How awesome!! are fabulous!!!

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     I am working on my gray cardigan made with Karina yarn. I have the back finished and I have started the fronts, working both together. I still have to sew the WOW! chenille cardigan together (and here is where I will probably procrastinate as I am not a lover of hand sewing). But the biggest thrill was that today I went to my LYS, The Gifting Tree, with Arlene, one of the knitting ladies from the (now discontinued) SnB group. She helped me pick out yarns for the Surprise Shawl that I am making for one of my coworkers, Aida. I can't wait to get started on it. The yarns are just too beautiful, don't you think so?

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It's being made in turquoise and browns, different textures and some glitz. It's worked on size 15 needles....HEY, Jessica....your gift is just in the nick of time!! Guess I have to spend less time on the computer and more time in front of the TV to get these projects done. And another friend/coworker will give me her decision tomorrow (and I just know it will be a go ahead) to make her a long sleeved shrug in white and silver.

     Today our dear friends John and Melinda are coming over for BBQ . Gonna use our new grill. I bought a little tray that is used to grill fresh veggies and I am trying it out today. I bought nice, fresh veggies at the Farmer's Market - asparagas, eggplant, zucchini, portobello mushrooms and red onions....mmm, my mouth is watering already. Add to that some steaks, thin seasoned sausage links and a big, fresh salad...I am good to go.    OH - good news (to me, anyway). My cholesterol was checked in the fall and was a bit high - 235 (can't beleive that I am at that "check your cholesterol" age). I eat healthy, but watched it a bit more, started eating Cheerios in the morning and walk the treadmill at least 3x a week, an an occasional bike ride at night....and yesterday it was checked again and it's down to 173. Is that great or what???? I feel like such a good girl...getting rewarded for doing the right thing!

Hope you all have a wonderful, sunny weekend!!!

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Things Always Happen For a Reason

About 5 years ago I came to believe in two things...
1. Everything happens for a reason
2. Things may not always work out as YOU want them to, but they work out.

As I related in yesterday's post, my SnB group folded, as per the LYS owner. Today when I came home and got onto my computer, there was an e-mail from Catherine Wingate. She wrote two of the sock pattern books that I have: The Sock Journal and The Sock Calendar. I met Catherine last Fall when I went to the knitting group that she started 5 years ago. It was nice, they met in Borders, but it was a distance for me to go after work and then go home from. When the SnB group started in my LYS I attended that one. Weellll - Catherine and her friends are going to be meeting much closer to my home, the first and third Monday of each month. I was invited to "join," which I promptly did. Then I called Arlene, one of the knitters from my SnB group and she will attend with me this coming Monday, and she will call the two other "regulars" from our group and ask them to join us. If it works out, we might meet on the off weeks as well.

My second happy moment today...a friend/coworker wants me to knit the Surprise Shawl for her. That's the one that Arlene and others in my SnB group have made. I wanted to make one so badly but it's very expensive and I really don't have much use for one myself. But with my friend paying for it....I get to make it for free. Plus she wants to wear it at work in the Fall and "model" it, with the hope that others will order one. Arlene is a sweetheart and will help me pick out and coordinate the yarns, this coming Saturday.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

What a Bummer!

I wait all week for Tuesdays. I go through my day at school, hold my team meeting right after work and then stay and do my lesson plans and any other work that needs to be done....cause I hang out till 5 PM and head straight to my SnB meeting (it's half way between work and home so it doesn't pay to go home first). I really, really look forward to seeing my knitting cronies. So you can imagine how I felt when I walked in and found out that this is the last meeting at that site (supposedly for the summer). There were only two of us "regulars" there plus one "newbie." We are a small group to begin with, but several other knitters didn't come in because they have company visiting for the Passover holiday. So now we are trying to come up with a place to meet and continue our Tuesday evening SnB knit-ins. Arlene spoke to one Barnes and Noble who said we can just pull up some tables and chairs and hang out. I will ask at another that is a bit closer to me, but either way, I'll attend wherever it is.
I started a new project...a cardigan using Karina by (King) Filtes yarns. It's so soft and fuzzy. The pattern was done on the computer by Judy who owns the LYS where we met, so I have never seen a picture of the sweater done up. I hope it comes out good. I will post a picture when I get a few more inches done on it. Tonight, after an awesome win by the Yankees over the Angels (and a fabulous night for Alex Rodriguez) I made the second sleeve to my WOW! chenille cardigan. Now I have to take the time to sew it up. Can't wait till that's all done. Will post it at that time.
My secret Pal posted about my package on her blog and I am no longer a "secret." She is so sweet. I hope we keep in touch!
Time for sleep...YAWN!!!I am more than ready. 'night!

Monday, April 25, 2005

Secret Pal Revealed...sort of....

I just read my secret pal's blog (the person I send goodies to) and there was 2 entries. The first told about what a bummer of a day she has had. The second was an audio entry, thanking her secret pal...that's me...for the package she received today, just in time to soothe her savage soul. It made me feel SO good to know that she liked what I sent and that it happened to arrive at a most opportune time. Nikki has been fun to send things to (and to Smokey, her little dog). I have enjoyed reading her blog, too, and getting to know her. And...because I read her blog, I have learned how to do an audio entry, something that not even Alison, my daughter, knew how to do...and SHE'S the techie. So thank you, Nikki!!!!

By the way...the bike ride was wonderful, and thanks to going on the treadmill several times a week, my legs handled it much better than a while ago. Now it's off to the shower and then to the couch to knit a bit.

How To Add Audio to Your Blog

Jenn asked how I added audio to my blog. I found out that it was possible by going to my Secret Pals blog - she had it, and I thought, "how cool!!" So I went to Blogger Dashboard, clicked on "Blogger Help" on the sideboard, then on the top right-hand side, where it has a search box, I typed in "Audio" and it brings you to all you need to know to add audio to your blog. So, Jenn...let me know if you get it up and running, and send me your blog url so I can hear you for myself!

Nothing else to report. This will be short as I am cooking dinner (Gerry is grilling on our FABULOUS new grill - we used it yesterday and it worked beautifully). Then we are going out for a bike ride. I didn't go to the gym to walk the treadmill, which I do 3 - 4 times a week, so this is in it's place. A four mile ride - up to and along the beach, then through Delray Beach's downtown...and what a great night for riding. It's now 75 degrees and sunny with a slight breeze (6:55 PM) and I know we will see what is a day-after full moon (the past 2 nights we drove to the beach and sat watching the calm ocean with the moon above it - ah, I love my life).

Have a wonderful evening! I know I will!

Saturday, April 23, 2005

this is an audio post - click to play

Thursday, April 21, 2005

How About a BBQ?

Our very good friends just gave us this fabulous BBQ. It's a Crown -Verity (never heard of that before but I looked it up and it's a REALLY good one). It's only about 2 months old, 48", stainless steel, uses 2 propane tanks, has blue canvas cover and two large shelves that Gerry has not put on yet. I can't wait to use it. I usually keep the BBQ on the side of the house by the kitchen door, but after having our generator stolen during the hurricane last Fall, we chained it to the backyard fence until our friend Steve finds a way to bolt it to the ground. My apologies to Hank, my ex...I remember a time when he would have killed for a BBQ like this one.

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     Friday night we are going to watch the Florida Marlins play the Cincinnati Reds. It's Teacher Appreciation night so we thought it was appropriate to purchase tickets (plus they were at a discount). We are going with my friend/coworker Sherry and her hubby Steve, and Shawn and Michelle (he is on my kindergarten team, and they are getting married in another week). I know we will have a great time. We decided that we should root for the home long as they aren't playing the Yankees, of course.

     OK - have to shower and get some sleep...tomorrow is a LONG DAY! And to my friends and family who are celebrating Passover this week....have a good sedar.

Second try....

I spent a lot of time writing this post yesterday via photobucket, sent it to blog was gone! Doncha hate when that happens? So this is my second try.
Hmmm, where to start? Well, Monday I took my class on a field trip to Butterly World in Pompano, Fl. I love this trip. You walk through netted gardens with butterflies flying all around, and even go into an area with small birds, even hummingbirds. I am not a professional photographer, but I did get a few nice shots of the butterflies.
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The kids had a great time. Later that day my assistant found a big, black, hairy caterpillar in the school's flower bed. So we brought it inside, set it into a netted basket with a plant on it (for climbing) and keep supplying it with the flowers that it appears to like. I think it's most likely a moth caterpillar. I am using this for our Science Fair project. I actually HATE doing science fair projects...I like observing scientific things but I am not into working on them. The students are really excited about this and so it seemed a natural lead into the fair. I hope that the caterpillar survives and makes a big cocoon for us to watch. I also bought a crysallis of a zebra butterfly (the official Florida butterfly) so we are waiting for that butterfly to emerge probably in a week or so.

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     On Tuesday night I went to my SnB group. There were many more women there than ever before. I think it's finally catching on, although several of the women are "snowbirds" and therefore are leaving within the next week or so to go back north for the summer. I am still working on my WOW chenille cardigan. I had to frog the sleeve that I made. It was SO wide, and although it is supposed to be kinda wide, you could have put both my arms into it. So I lessened the cast on stitches and so on up the sleeve. I only have the right sleeve to make and then I can sew it together. Then I will probably work on another cardigan, or maybe make a pair of socks in between. I have SO much yarn I just have to start making that stash a bit smaller. I would LOVE to make a Surprise Shawl, like many of the women in my SnB group are making, but the yarn costs about $125 and I have no real use for it. But it's SOOO pretty and fun to make. I would love to just invest in making one and show it off at work, hoping I can sell a few (although teachers here aren't really paid tons of money). I might just take a pix of one of them and see if I can drum up interest that way.

Saturday, April 16, 2005


Wednesday night we saw the last show in our theater subscription.... Chicago. I freely admit that I saw the original production on Broadway when it opened in the 70's, then again about 8 years ago here in Florida. However, Gerry had only seen the movie, so we were eager to attend. We had our  box seats (love that spot) and so were able to see everything very well. The show was still great - Bob Fosse's choreography is a wonderful thing to watch, and the music is terrific. We started the evening with dinner at a steakhouse in CityPlace, a trendy area in West Palm Beach (though the restaurant is merely a sports bar/restaurant. We sat surrounded by 10 big screen TV's, and got to watch the first two innings of the Yankee-Red Sox game. We left for the theater with a tied score...0 - 0. Luckily, when we got home, the Yanks had won....good boys!!! Unfortunately, they were not as lucky the next night! <sigh>

On Thursday night we went to dinner with Gerry's daughter Suzzette, her husband Brian, and her mom and grandmother, both who flew in to be with her after the miscarriage. Suzzette looks great, though she is still quite uncomfortable with cramps and walking is tentative, at best. We had a nice dinner at a local 50's diner. Gerry's ex is very nice and her mother is a sweetheart. It's not the first time we have been together. While I was nowhere to be seen 14 years ago when they split, it's still nice that we all get along so well, especially for Suzzette. I wish that everyone in this world was able to get past their differences and "problems" with each other so that their loved ones would not have to be put in uncomfortable positions of having to "choose" who to invite and who not to when there are special occasions. Life is way too short for holding grudges or just plain not getting along. Ok, enough soapbox for one blog!

     I came home Thursday and found an ROAK package waiting for me. One of the women on the FiberRAOK group, Noreen (, knit a pair of socks for me. They are LOVELY, soft and machine washable. She calls them Tennessee Socks. Thanks Noreen!!!!

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     My daughter Alison is running a 1/2 marathon in Albuequerque, NM today with her husband Michael. I have to give them credit...they work hard to meet the challenges they take on. She has been SO sick this week and still is determined to finish this race. On Sunday she turns 29 (for the first time,as she likes to say). I remember vividly when she was born...she is my first...and oh, what a joyous day that way. And was in the Bronx, NY, Passover, day before Easter, and the temps soared to 90 degrees. The hospital wasn't prepared with A/C turned on and was it hot for a day or so. Everyone was thrilled with her arrival...she was (and still is) beautiful. So, Happy Birthday, my darling daughter. You ( and your sister, too) are the light of my life!

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Knitting Right Along

I LOVE to take 4 hour car rides - we go away for the weekend AND I get some good knitting time in.
This weekend we drove to The Villages. That's in Central Florida, about 30 minutes south of Ocala. We went to see Gerry's brother Eddie and his wife Billie, and their sister-in-law Barbara. Eddie and Billie have a house that they will one day retire to, but the past two weeks they are on vacation and brought Barb with them. This time it didn't take Gerry and I over 8 hours to get there (see previous post). We got there early enough to go out to dinner with the others. Saturday was nice - the guys played a little golf and Billie and I hung out for about 90 minutes at the pool (I did get a little color). Later on we had a nice BBQ with friends of B&E. The other couple's daughter and her 4 yr old son were there. He was cute, but I don't really want to talk to anyone under 4 ft. tall on weekends. However, I couldn't help but be nice to him, and I took some time and showed Gerry's diving pix to him (Tyler). He was fascinated, and so good.
We spent the rest of the evening in....knitting while listening to TV, of course. Today we took the clan to breakfast at Cracker Barrel. I was SOOO good - ate a light breakfast! Then we left, and stopped at an outlet center in Orlando where I bought some tops (at not really outlet prices) at Ann Loft Factory. Then we headed home.
On the way up I worked on the half sweater that I have been making for several weeks. I had to open the back and add to the length, and got as far as finishing one "sleeve" before I almost ran out of yarn. Judy, the proprietor of my LYS is holding another skein of the Debbie Bliss Angora Cotton for me, but...I don't know! I am not thrilled with this project and will get some opinions Tuesday evening at SnB as to how it looks and whether or not to just frog it all and call it a day.
I also worked on my WOW! chenille cardigan. I opened the back, lengthened it to match the left front and completed it. I started the right front on the ride down and I am halfway finished. The yarn is thick so it works up quickly. The only thing I don't like about this chenille is that it frays on the cut end of the yarn, and when you attach it you have to pull off the pieces of yarn and just knot the strings that it's on.
We decided on the way home to go to the movies before we got home. We went to see Fever Pitch with Jimmy Fallon and Drew Barrymore. What a funny, good feeling movie - in spite of the fact that the Red Sox beat the Yankees at the end...ok - TRUE ending, but who wants to be reminded of THAT!!!
So - home again and it feels really good. Love to go away...but love to come home.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Just Been Procrastinating

I have not written on this blog for just about a week - shame on me! I get so caught up with other things that I do on the computer, and before I know it, it's after midnight.

My big preoccupation for the past week - to start - had been my new phone. I did go to my provider's store..oh,'s Verizon, on Saturday to switch from the LG7000 that I purchased last week and that now is $100 cheaper, to the LG 8000, which is almost the same cost as what I paid for the 7000 model (only $20 more but more features and better camera). I was there for almost an hour. Tamiko, the customer rep, was SOOOO nice. She finally arranged for me to swap out the phone there instead of having to mail the 7000 back to Verizon (I had ordered it via telephone). However, I didn't have the box and stuff so I had to return Monday. I did so, and after another hour or two the phone was all set up and ready to go. I purchased a car charger at that time, and when I got home I found out that the package came with an earphone wire but no clip on holster (my last 2 phones had 2 holsters in them). This wouldn't have been an issue except that if you buy the charger and holster together you get a break. SO - I called the store, told my story, and was assured that I could come in and just get the holster - now a leather case w/clip - for $10 more, which I did today. Whew - glad that's over. As to the phone, it's great, just a little bigger than I would like. I also got 2 months free of V-Cast - the ability to get video clips and games on my phone, later to be $15/month. You KNOW I'm gonna cancel that! It's not live stuff - it's things I can see on TV that I don't bother to watch now. But I did download songs as ringtones and put them with various phone numbers. THAT kept me up until 1 AM Monday night!

Sunday was great. After straightening up and setting up for our BBQ, I went to downtown Delray (9 blocks from home) to the Delray Affair - lots of arts, crafts, vendors, etc. Each year it gets huge-er and huge-er. I even tried to donate blood, which I do 2 - 3 times a year, but my iron level, while not bad, was too low for them to accept. Well, I did try!

The BBQ was fun. We invited some folk who were either Yankee or Red Sox fans, for baseball's opening day game. For those of you who have been off the planet for the past 86 years (or just don't give a hoot) these two teams have a long running rivalry. We, being from NY/NJ (and especially me, from Bronx, NY) are big Yankee fans. We had a big supply of Yankee hats for those who did not own one. RS fans had to supply their own hats.

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The couple on the far left are Michelle & Shawn, who we were with in Orlando two weeks ago. I work with Shawn - he is one of my kindergarten team. We will be attending their wedding on May 1. Melinda and John (beige hats) are our very dear friends. We go to Nascar races with them 3 times a year, as well as share other fun times. There is Gerry - navy blue shirt on the left, and some other fun guys, even though they are RS fans.

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Here are the guys giving the fame their undivided attention. Me? I was cleaning up the kitchen (before and after I took this pix). Don't holler about the guys - they DID offer to help, but I can multi-task - they can't!!!

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Showing off just how big a Yankee fan I have become. Ok, Becca - not as big as YOU cause I don't have it TATOOed on my back like SOME we know!

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I have to tell's so great to have common interests. Who would have thought that a Jewish girl like me from The Bronx, NY would have so much to share with an Irishman who grew up in the mountains of NJ? But it works (so far!!). And it's lots of fun!

Tuesday night I went to SnB and FINALLY knitted. First I had to tink - or, more precisely, take out a bound off edge - of the back of my half sweater, add several inches, bind off again and begin the sleeve. Truth be told, I am not that happy with it. It's made wtih Debbie Bliss Angora Cotton and it's just too soft - no, I do like soft yarn but it seems to hang too softly. Well, maybe it will be better when it's done. Again - a bit jealous over the beautiful shawls that the other women are knitting, but I just don't see the necessity in it for my lifestyle. I hope to finish this project and then fix and work on the chenille WOW cardigan on our trip to Central Fl this weekend.

On a much sadder note...I don't like to put sadness here, but since I wrote about my excitement due to my stepdaughter's pregnancy, I feel I have to write about this too. Today Suzzette lost the baby, which was a boy. I really don't care to go into specifics as it is too difficult to relate yet again (having shared it with immediate family). Suzzette is doing ok - her husband Brian and Gerry were with her at the hospital today and her mom is flying in from Atlanta and staying for a few weeks (no matter what age, there are just times when having mom around is a necessity). I know that this will be a tough time for S & B, as well as her parents and myself, but I also believe that everything happens for a reason and that this baby just wasn't meant to be. Hopefully, one day they will have their family.

Don't want to end this on such a sad note, so let me say that in spite of it all, the weather here in S. Florida is beautiful, the flowers are in bloom (well, they ALWAYS are), I'm knitting again, and life is good!