Devine site

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

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Famous Last Words

     tonight Gerry and I went to the IMAX 3D theater to see Magnificent Desolation, a movie about walking on the moon, narrated by Tom Hanks. The movie was good. Instead of eating where we usually do we decided to drive back to Boca Raton and eat at a restaurant that we like. While we were driving there we talked about our cars and I said,"Thank goodness my car (of 7 years) is still in great shape. I'll drive it till it can't even crawl anymore!" - I love my car. It's a '98 Pontiac Sunfire convertible - RED!!! Well, I spoke too soon....

     After a nice dinner we came out to get the car from the valet parker. When the young man came over and said, " are the owners of the red Pontiac convertible?"  I knew it wasn't good news. Seems that when Juan (the young man's name) was parking the car, he turned the corner and a man who had parked in a handicapped spot and realized that he couldn't stay there (he wasn't handicapped, or at least, he didn't have a handicap permit)....this man backed out of the spot, obviously wasn't looking carefully, and rammed into my car, scratching and denting the passenger door. And he hit it hard enough that he broke the window...which was down, inside the door. The glass must have been forced out of the top opening of the door because there were large chunks on my seat, floor AND in the rear floor. Plus the sideview mirror casing was broken. I was heartbroken, but was also happy that the young man wasn't hurt. Juan was great, too....he had a camera and took all kinds of pictures, called the police immediately and already had a police report in hand. We went over everything with him, and then found out that the owner of the other car was in the restaurant. Gerry and I went in to see the man (and truth be told, I really thought that he would nicely say, "Oh, gee, I am so sorry, but I didn't see your car" or "I made a mistake," or "I am glad the valet parker wasn't hurt" and "Don't worry....we'll let my insurance company handle it." INSTEAD....the JERK said, with a straight face, "Oh, yes, the valet parker came around a corner and hit my car!!!" and denied any wrong doing.  NOW I was angry, but Gerry suggested we just leave (gotta love him....he's become a pacifist. I was ready for my Bronx roots to begin to come out).

     Here's a few pix of the car, glass on the floor (Gerry tossed the pieces from the front seat so I could sit down), and the door. They may not be too good as I took them in the dark.

Image hosted by

Image hosted by

When you look at the car you can see that it was not a side swipe but a direct hit. Anyway, I called my insurance company, GEICO, and they were wonderful. I already have an appointment to take the car to a nearby collision place where the adjuster will come out and look at it. I get a rental car, too, till it's fixed. Unfortunately, I have to pay the $ deductible, but then GEICO fights the other company for it, and, since this is not my fault - I wasn't in the car, most likely my insurance should remain the same. IT BETTER!!!

The rest of the evening wasn't much better. We planned to go to a second movie, but the theater was packed. We drove to another theater but we missed the showing by 20 minutes. I know that in the scheme of things, all of this is so minor. Still, seeing my car with a big boo-boo hurts!!! (and having to lay out the deductible doesn't feel too good, either!!). Ah, Scarlet O'Hara once said, "Tomorrow is another day!!!"...and so it is!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

A Survey for My Secret Pal 6

1. Are you a yarn snob? Do you avoid Red Heart and Lion Brand? Or is it all the same to you?
I am only a teeny bit of a yarn snob. I prefer not to knit with Red Heart yarns but I do like some acrylic mixes such as those by Sidar. I like Lion Brand wools, cottons, homespun, and I do like Simply Soft by Caron. But I REALLY LOVE soft wools such as those sold by ...Peruvian Wool, etc.

2. Do you spin? Crochet?
I do crochet, but prefer a knitted garment. I like crocheting for blankets, hats and some ponchos. I don't spin and have no desire to do so.
3. Do you have any allergies?
No real allergies, but I don't like being around smoke.
4. How long have you been knitting?
I have been knitting since I was a young teenager (that was quite a long time ago), but never got into really interesting yarns and such until I taught my daughter to knit two years ago. She got hooked on it and brought me into a whole new world.

5. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
No, I really don't. The only book I am waiting to get is Top Down For Toddlers, which so far I have only seen on'm just too cheap to get it at this time.
6. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.)
For candles and bath products I like clean smelling scents. I like vanilla, coconut, some honey products. I don't like flowery or very sweet smelling scents. My favorite candle scent, though, is Sugar Cookie or Caramel - I know ....that's sweet!! But hey, everyone is entitled to an exception.

7. Do you have a sweet tooth?
Hmm, not too bad. My favorite candy is DARK chocolate covered raspberry jelly rings, but I never buy them. I am always trying to "be good" so I avoid candy. Now and then I will eat a pack of those rainbow colored sweet/sour buttons, and as a RARE treat I will dare to eat a mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cup ( I LOVE peanut butter).
8. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do?
Not many anymore. As I get "more mature" in years I find that I really just enjoy knitting and the occasional crocheted project.
9. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s?
I like all kinds of music. I can only play MP3's on my computer. My car takes regular CD's. I like Streisand, Midler, Minelli, Broadway show tunes, Shania Twain, Faith Hill,  Shaggy, pop music, easy listening, soft jazz.
10. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer?
I prefer black, white or beiges in my clothing, and of course, blue denim (I love jeans). My house is finally painted in colors - pale green in the living room, pale yellow in the bedroom, a deeper green in the kitchen, all trimmed with white, and all three colors in the bathroom. I do have some red items to wear, but I only wear them occasionally.
11. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I have been married to a wonderful man for over 2 years now. That's us last year:

Image hosted by

We have three dogs � Maltese � named Tiemann, daschund Rusty and a shepard/chow named Cocktail.

Image hosted by
Image hosted by
Image hosted by

12. What are your life dreams?
To be retired and have enough money to travel to interesting places.the Orient, Palau (to go diving), Australia, Europe, and of course, to see my children as often as they can stand having me there.

13. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with?
I like anything soft, and not TOO thin. I prefer DK or thicker, but don't mind Knitpicks Landscape or Sock Garden. I like Baby Alpaca, Merino, Simply Soft, and I really enjoyed working with Bamboo either from Southwest Trading Co or Crystal Palace...both worked up well.

14. What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
Red Heart and the like! Cheap and/or scratchy fibers! Nothing too rough. I also don�t like the �fun furs� type of yarn as I am not into scarf knitting or anything that is foofy. Oh and again, nothing too thin!!
15. What is/are your current knitting obsession/s?
I don't really have a knitting obsession. I do enjoy knitting baby sweaters. I like knitting with bamboo needles (I have collected most sizes) and circulars - just bought the Denise interchangeables. One day I would like to get a pair of Addi Turbos, as I hear they are terrific. I think I am eclectic in my knitting....if a pattern comes my way that I like and isn't too difficult (I am basically an intermediate knitter) then I will try it.

16. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
Baby sweaters are my favorite, and I really like knitting either top-down or sleeve to sleeve. The least amount of putting together is for me! I like to make sweaters but again, nothing overly intracate and it would have to be with soft yarn....nothing scratchy. I also enjoy knitting socks.
17. What are you knitting right now?
I am just finishing a baby sweater, will start on a textured shrug using Clea and Electra yarns, and have to start on a crocheted baby blanket. Then I have to make a sweater for my son-in-law's birthday.
18. What do you think about ponchos?
I have not worn one since 1976, although I might make a couple for a friend's granddaughters, since I can knit them fast.
19. Do you prefer straight or circular needles?
Both, depending on the project.
20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
I hate straight plastics, I like my Denise interchangeables, really like the shorter bamboo, and as stated before, would like to own at least one pair of Addi Turbos.

21. Are you a sock knitter?
Yes. I don't like working on anything TOO thin, but I enjoy making socks. I like the Broadripple pattern and have used Knitpicks Sock Garden and Landscape yarns, both nice to work with. I plan to eventually make socks with intergrated beading from The Sock Journal by Catherine Wingate.

22. How did you learn to knit?
Not really sure. I know that I have been knitting since I was very young, so either my aunt or a neighbor taught me (my mom was NOT a knitter).
23. How old is your oldest UFO?
I have an alpaca sweater that still needs the arms completed and a chenille sweater that just needs to be sewn...both are about 6 months old.

24. What is your favorite animated character or a favorite animal/bird?
I love dogs...I have 3! Not a big fan of cats. I don't really have a favorite animated character.
25. What is your favorite holiday?
Even though I am Jewish, I would have to say Christmas. I was brought up in a mixed home and so we celebrated with my dad's family, continued into my former marriage, and in my current life we have a real tree set up next to the menorah. We celebrate in a secular way, but it's really pretty.
26. Is there anything that you collect?
Not really. I started collecting snow globes but have way too many (and people tend to give you just any old kind, not always what I would like). I used to buy recipe books but never used them. I am always "collecting" yarn, knitting notions, etc.  I guess the best thing I collect is....friends!

27. What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
Family Circle Knitting and Creative Knitting.

28. Any books out there you are dying to get your hands on?
So far just Top Down For Toddlers on the site. As for reading books, I just read what others have suggested and pass on to me, and I do love getting audio books on CD from the library (I have a long ride to work each day)...I love biographies the best.

29. Any patterns you are coveting, but haven�t bought for one reason or another?
30. What are your foot measurements, and what kind of socks do you like?
Soft socks of course. I usually wear sandals and only wear socks, white ankle socks, with my sneakers. So I wear knitted socks in the house when my feet get cold.  I wear an 7.5 ladies shoe. Ankle is  8�, foot (tip of big toe to heel)  is 9� long and 8� around, just under the ball of my foot.
31. What are your favorite foods?
AH....I do like food. I LOVE rice;  fruit - especially blueberries and strawberries; sushi; Italian and Chinese food; salads of almost any type.

32. What else can you tell us?
I try to watch what I eat, although I "cheat" here and there. I eat a mostly low fat, low carb diet. I do not drink soda....mostly water ( tap water is just fine). I like decaf coffee (mostly have it in restaurants), drink (loose) camomille tea every morning on my way to work. I love NY style cheesecake, though I can't remember the last time I had some. I watch very little TV (that's why TIVO is my friend) and I LOVE going to the movies and to Broadway musicals (they come to S. Florida often - we have a subscription). I scuba dive, enjoy riding bike riding in the evenings, belong to but hate the gym, except for the Latin Cardio  class - because I LOVE to dance. I am learning to play golf, too. I am a romantic person; I  cry over movies, books, the news.
I teach kindergarten, but I am not into reading professional books. I love the NY Yankees. I have lived here for 10 years but I am still a New Yorker from DA BRONX! I LOVE NY and the people there. I hate being cold, love sunshine,  my sandals, my convertible car (red, of course), and my family. I have a son; and two beautiful, wonderful daughters who each have a fabulous husband, and I am looking forward to being a grandma one day soon.

So to my Secret Pal....hope this gives you some insight into ME! If you need any more info, just ask. can write to my daughter at Alreillygator dot yahoo dot com and ask her....but don't believe any of the bad things she might divulge (lol).

Monday, September 19, 2005

I Love Getting Goodies!

This weekend Ger and I flew to Cincinnati, Ohio to visit with his friends who I have now known for the past 5 years (actually I know Dave because he comes to stay at our house every Feb for a few days and is also our tax accountant - I met his wife Linda twice before). It was a nice weekend, quiet, relaxing - too relaxing for me, actually. I got a LOT of knitting done (will say more about that later). When we got home there was a package at the was my Sockapalooza socks, and they are SOOO pretty. They are knit with Koigu, and although I do'to like the color orange too much, I love the mixed colors...sort of Thanksgiving/Fall colors. But not only did Jennifer send me the handknit socks, she included a lot more...

Image hosted by
Image hosted by

There is what I believe is soap (or is it candle wax?) purchased at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Fair, and a large skein of pink wool, plus brochures on places of interest in Connecticut...Jennifer is from Waterford, Ct.Thank you, thank you, thank you Jennifer! I LOVE it all!! When I go to see my daughter Alison in October we'll put the yarn through her yarn meter, and once I know how much I have I will be able to decide what to make with the yarn.

     As I said, I got a lot of knitting done in Ohio. I finished the redo of the Ballet Tee. It looks so good on. I love it. I used LionEase Cotton, three skeins (the piece is worked with two strands together, so the third skein has to be wound into two balls so you can use it double strand.

Image hosted by

Then I started a baby sweater using a pattern from a small booklet purchased some time ago at JoAnn's. I have all but the sleeves done - I even have the fronts sewn to the back already, and the collar knitted on. I am using a pale yellow Sidar DK yarn. I had four skeins to start. Hopefully I will have enough for the hat.

     Once more South Florida is bracing for a hurricane. This one is Rita. It is expected to impact the Keys on it's way to terrorize those poor, already suffering people in Mississippi and/or Texas. S. Florida is taking no chances. They closed schools in the Keys, Miami-Dade County and Broward County - that's where I work. So I am off tomorrow. I'll try to get up and go to the gym with Ger in the morning - but sleeping late (till 8) would be wonderful (although once he's up, I'm up). Will catch up on TIVO'd programs, do laundry (I already did grocery shopping today) and MAYBE straighten out the things in my armoire. Of coure, I'll get some knitting done, but most of it will be saved for my knitting group which meets tomorrow night.

     I got GREAT news today! My younger daughter, Becca, is definitely graduating from UCF in May. She was originally told that she was short two credits, but they recomputed and she is actually going to graduate with two extra credits. I am so excited for her. Following her graduation in Orlando, there will be a party the next day. I'll also get to be with Alison and Michael, who of course will be there. Should be pretty interesting, though. Ger and I will go up with my mom, staying at my in-laws (unoccupied) house about 30 minutes from Becca. However, at the graduation and party, will be my ex and my son,  who don't speak to (or even look at) any of us except for Becca and her husband Phil. This is all so weird to me, as I get along with anyone, and even if I didn't, I would put it all aside so as not to make others uncomfortable. Wouldn't it be a nice world if everyone would just get along?

     Time to go watch the NY Yankees beat Baltimore. Have a good night, all!

Sunday, September 11, 2005


Today I saw a FABULOUS show called Respect! "Combining excerpts of 60 songs with women's own stories about finding dreams, lost love, relationship issues, entering the workforce, gaining independence, and more, this show is "exhilarating!" It's more than just a story worth telling, it's a must-see and must-hear." Those are the words taken from the Theaterland site, Chicago, but it tells it better than I can. I suggest that if this show comes to your city/town that you make an effort to see it. It's a testament to all women.

Image hosted by


Saturday, September 10, 2005

Done and Undone

I finished the Ballet Tee (from Loop d Loop) last night's a teeny bit too small. I can wear it but it's JUST fits on top and, although it looked as if it would be long enough (60 rows in all), it's not. So tonight's project is to FROG!!!! all the way back to a big ball of yarn and...start again. Luckily, it's worked on such big needles that it won't take all that long to redo it. Doncha just hate when that happens? Oh - please excuse the poor quality of the picture (the tee is actually a beautiful aqua). I left my camera at school and really wanted to include the tee on my blog, so I took the pix with my phone!

Image hosted by

We saw an excellent movies last night...An Unfinished Life, with Robert Redford, Morgan Freeman, Jennifer Lopez and Josh Lucas. It was a wonderful story....I highly recommend it to all!

Monday, September 05, 2005

I LOVE a Surprise!

As I sat her futzing around on my computer, there was a knock at the door. My DH answered it....a "neighbor" from 10 blocks away bringing a package that was delivered to her by mistake (her address, not mine was on the package). It was a RAOK....from a member of a group that I belong to FiberRAOK (Random Acts of Kindness, for those of you who are not members). Inside was this lovely ball of yarn, with a note explaining that "This yarn has travelled far. I picked out the 4 yarns and had them wound together in an outdoor texile market in Donguan, China." How cool is that. Below I am posting a pix of the ball of yarn AND the fibers separated.  I wrote to Kimberli asking how much yarn there actually is, so I can make something with it and not run out. This just made my day!

Image hosted by
Image hosted by

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Finally Got Here!

What a good week!! My class was wonderful all week. I know it's going to come back to haunt me, I'll probably get a student with a major problem, but so far these students are heaven. Even the other teachers who work with them - PE, Art, Music, Spanish...all agree.


I went to my knit group on Tuesday and met Susan, who is not a new knitter but new to our group. Unfortunately there were only 3 of us, including Susan, but I am confident she will return and meet more of the group this coming Tuesday. I worked on the textured shrug, finishing the knitting and starting the sewing of seams. I finished it today but, no matter how I tried to cast off loosely, the bottom edge is still too tight. I left the yarn untied when I finished casting off, completed the back neck, and returned to undo the cast off. won't undo....somehow I am NOT opening the right stitch. I tried and tried...oh, well, I'll just wear it as is. I am eager to wear it tonight.

Image hosted by

I started working on the Ballet Tee from Loop de Loop book. I am using Ease Cotton, turquoise color, that I bought in Tuesday Morning. I also purchased Denise interchangeable knitting needles. Yes, I told my self, you have LOTS of circular needles, but now I can carry them with me and  have sizes 5 - 15 with various lengths of cable.

I received my last SP5 package and now can reveal that she is Bethanie of She has been a wonderful SP. This last package contained Peaches & Creme 4-ply worsted weight 100% cotton yarn (by Elmore-Pisgah Inc)....3 balls, color ecru; a bulky-knit count - I have one for small needles but not for bulky needles (good thinking, Bethanie), a CD of Musical Hits from Various Broadway Shows - I LOVE Broadway showtunes, and it has one of my current favorites..."What Do You Do With a BA in English/It Sucks to Be Me! from Avenue Q, which I saw in June while in NY;" and a great book...Get Crafty by Jean Railla. The book is dedicated to "the Craftistas" which is all of us women crafters. There are some great recipes, hints for sewing an A-line skirt, painting the house, knitting info, making flower pots from old vinyl 33 1/3 speed records...Hey, Alison, is this where you got the idea from? So, Bethanie, thanks once again for being a fabulous SP. I loved each and every package!!! You are terrific!!

Image hosted by

On another note...My daughter went to the dr. on Friday and was told that she is physically fine (after her miscarriage) and can now let Michael "out of the basement." However...a slight glitch. My poor son-in-law has poison ivy from doing yard work...a REALLY BAD case of it. So Michael....much as I hate to say this....DON'T GO NEAR MY DAUGHTER yet! I went through chicken pox with her when she was 14 and she is not too pleasant when she is itching!!!


Movie reviews: The Constant Gardener was a great movie. It's both a love story and a consciousness raising story. I think that Ralph Fienne should be nominated for all the applicable awards. It falls in the same category as Hotel Rwanda, but it's more about people's greed and their lack of caring about the human race.

Image hosted by

The 40 Year Old Virgin....sounded SOOOO goofy to me, and I have to admit that it was silly at times, but absolutely hysterical. We have all known men and women like some of those depicted in this film...we laughed at them then, we can laugh at them again. One of the more memorable scenes is when the "virgin" is having his chest waxed!!! I think every woman in the audience felt his pain - as we laughed and laughed. Even my mother, who is 80 (a very "with-it" 80) loved the movie.

Tonight we are off to dinner with my cousins. We were dining on the Avenue with friends last night when I spotted my cousin from Texas walking by with a woman (his girlfriend who, up to then, I had not met). In front of him was his brother and wife who I knew were coming to town this weekend but never expected to see. I chased them down and we chatted a little before they continued on. So we are all getting together tonight at one of our favorite restaurants....J. Alexander's in Boca Raton. Gerry and I always get the same thing....Steak Maui, a marinated steak that is delicious, and Alex's Salad (comes with the meal) - a huge chopped salad. Should be a fun time.


Speaking of Gerry...I am so proud of him. He was told by his dr. that his sugar and triglyceride levels were a bit high and that he should lose weight. In 3 weeks he has lost around 13 lbs, looks good (stomach getting smaller) and works out 3 or more times at the gym each week. What a guy!!! The hardest for him is giving up his enormous popcorn doused in butter each time we go to the movies, but he is sticking to his convictions (he gets a small popcorn once every three movies).

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Pardon My Exhaustion

I had planned to come home and blog tonight but I am WAY too tired to do it justice. So, please be patient with me. I promise to blog on Saturday, post pictures of the texture shrug that should be finished by then (just doing the edging), and pix of my wonderful last SP5 package - and I will reveal her then. I am going to the couch and doing....NOTHING!!!!