Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year's Eve!




For more info
on why it works out to be every 19 years,

see:

What fun
and what a cool graphic!

Goodbye 2013!
Happy New Year's Eve, everybody!

XOXO,
Lucky Dog


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas!



For unto you is born this day
in the city of David
a Saviour,
which is Christ the Lord.

Luke 2 verse 11


XOXO





Saturday, December 21, 2013

Ice Storm 2013



Ice on the tree branches...



A cardinal waits for his turn on the feeder...



Mrs. Cardinal joins him...


We're thankful for electricity today.
Stay warm, everybody!

XOXO,
Lucky Dog





Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Video--Cats Who Love Vacuum Cleaners


This is just amazing and fun!

I need to watch this every time I need a smile!

XOXO,
Lucky Dog


Monday, December 16, 2013

Easy-to-Peel Hard-Boiled Eggs (really)



I’ve always had trouble peeling hard-boiled eggs.
It was very hit or miss.

Rarely did I get more than a few
that were pretty enough to put out on a plate.

(Deviled eggs were still out of the question.)

And, of course I googled and experimented…

I tried old eggs.
I tried adding baking soda to the water.
I tried adding vinegar to the water.
I even tried baking them in the oven.

The best result I ever got was
after I left them in the refrigerator overnight
and then peeled them.

But who can wait for that?

Then the other day I saw a video on YouTube,
shared by one of my FaceBook friends.

Here’s the link:  RVGeeks video

Well, I’d tried all the other things.
I thought I might as well give this a go.

And guess what??

It worked the first time!
Every egg peeled beautifully.

Eureka!
 At my age, I finally have learned how to boil eggs.
hahaha

Try it!  It really works!

XOXO,
Lucky Dog


Thursday, December 12, 2013

My Christmas List



Isn't this so true??

The other day I was trying to make out
my birthday/Christmas list

(to help out Mr. Man with his shopping),

but everything on my list
was something you couldn't buy.

My Christmas List
turned into
My Prayer List.

XOXO
 ♥  


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Fully charged



Just saw this on FaceBook...!!

XOXO


Sunday, December 8, 2013

Our Snowy Backyard



Our winter storm arrived with a beautiful dusting of snow.


We all knew it was coming,
so we stocked up at the grocery store, and “hunkered down”
for what they said would be a week of temps below freezing.


Daytime highs of 19 and single digits at night 
aren’t typical for December in Oklahoma.


Thank heavens for electricity and heaters.


And rice sock buddies.

Here's a link to my blog entry on them:
 (How to Make a Rice Sock Buddy) 

I especially love these because they stay so warm,
and you can snuggle up with them
or warm your nose or ears so easily. 

And unlike heating pads,
I don’t have to worry about electromagnetic radiation. 

Mine is worth its weight in gold to me.

I hope you’re staying toasty wherever you are!

XOXO,
Lucky Dog






Monday, December 2, 2013

A Critical Revelation :)



Sometimes, despite my best efforts,
I seem to have the gift of criticizing.
LOL

I guess a lifetime of critiquing musical performances
and scrutinizing calligraphic letterforms didn’t help any. 

Fault-finding was truly an important part of the job.

And I don’t mean to be a critical person. 
I try not to be.
I sure don’t mean anything by it. 

Like that ugly car that we saw yesterday. 

Yikes!
What color was that???

Some people might call it judging,
but I think I just have really good taste!
hahaha

And I have no problem if it’s your favorite car color. 
Really, I don’t.

Variety is the spice of life and we’re all the “same, but different”,
and it’s okay if we like different things. 
No worries.


But after 50-plus years, I have finally had an insight.

A revelation.


And it’s very, very practical.

I realized that if I do end up saying something negative
about something -- anything,

it is very good for me
to immediately follow it by saying something positive.

(as opposed to saying something else negative!)

It breaks the cycle somehow.

I talked this over with Mr. Man,
and we both think this is a very healthy new habit for us.

So now if we’re talking,
and one of us says something critical or negative,
even it is true..

we try to follow it with something positive,
no matter how hard it is to come up with it.

Like that ugly car?
Well, I can say that it looked very, very clean.
J

Try it.
I think you’ll find this to be very powerful, too.

XOXO,
Lucky Dog



Sunday, November 24, 2013

Another Favorite E-Card



And even nicer on a snowy day like today.


  

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Luke 12:6-7




If I take care of the little sparrows,

I will certainly take care of you.

-- God



Sunday, November 17, 2013

Computers and Sleep Hygiene



Years ago at the doctor’s office, my wonderful nurse practitioner, Vicki, asked me if I practiced good “sleep hygiene”.

I had already read some about sleep tips and hints, since we’re older now -- when a good night’s sleep is as valuable as gold…  J !!

I read about the basics, like:  limit caffeine, have a bedtime routine, try taking melatonin, sleep in a dark, cool room, use the bedroom only for sleeping, that sort of thing.

But she added one more:  turn off your computer a few hours before bedtime. 

That one surprised me.  Not only is it hard for me to do that, but I assumed that the reason was mental overstimulation.  (being too wound up and finding it difficult to un-wind)

Fast-forward a few years and I’m still on the computer at night (oops), reading a blog entry about someone trying to live by candlelight after sundown for 30 days.

It was a fascinating experiment for them, and they found themselves getting to sleep earlier and sleeping better.  And it turns out that one of the critical issues was blue light.

I learned that candlelight is redder, as were the campfires of our forefathers.  And guess what our modern lights and computers emit?  Yup, blue light.

And it turns out -- did all y’all know this already?  I didn’t -- that blue light inhibits the production of melatonin in our bodies.  Melatonin -- the sleep hormone.

Well!  I wasn’t quite ready to read books by candlelight…

So I kept surfing and reading, and found out that the easiest thing to try is a *free* app called F.lux.

Here’s the link:  http://justgetflux.com/

It automatically changes the colors on your computer screen after sundown and takes a lot of the blues out for you.

I asked Mr. Man, if I don’t like it, can you un-install it?, and he said yes.  So, I clicked on the button, got it installed, and went about my normal computer surfing.

And guess what?  I really did get to sleep easier, slept better, and woke up earlier the next day.  And even more so the next day.  It was wild.  And yes, it’s still working.

Who knew?? 

So, if you use your computer or iToy after sundown, and need a little help sleeping better, maybe it will help you, too!

I just pass these things along.
It’s what I do.

XOXO,
Lucky Dog


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Jumping for Joy



Here's the kitten
playing with his favorite toy.

XOXO



Sunday, November 10, 2013

Strike a Pose



Here are a few photos that I snapped with my iPhone.


We happened upon a few deer crossing the road
and this girl stayed for a photo shoot.




If you click on the photo,
you can see a larger version.


I just love having a camera
with me at all times,
even if it's not a real one.


XOXO,
Lucky Dog 


Monday, October 28, 2013

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

LoveFest Video



Our previous male cat used to lick this little girl a lot, 
and she loved it so much.

And I was sad for her after we put him down,
wondering if she would miss it and be okay.

Then when we got the new kitten,
I was hoping that someday
he would take over the LoveFest duties.

But then it took awhile for the cat and the kitten
to be okay being around each other..

And even longer for them to play together..

But now they are finally loving on each other,
and hopefully for many years to come.

♥ ♥ ♥



Thursday, October 17, 2013

John MacArthur + a Quote




So, I’ve been listening to parts of the Strange Fire conference this week.  It’s being held in California, but anyone can listen to it streaming live on the Internet.

In fact, here’s a link, if you are so inclined:  Grace to You  The  conference, though, is over tomorrow (Friday) night.

That link is to Grace to You, the ministry of John MacArthur.  He is a pastor, author and speaker, and is my very most favorite Bible teacher.  He’s written tons and tons of books, a Study Bible and lots of commentaries.  There’s just gobs of teaching there.

In fact, that website has all his sermons available for free.  You can watch and listen to them or even read them -- I think most of them have been transcribed.  Sometimes I read while I listen!

And, of course, sometimes I listen while I knit!  ♥

That’s what I’m doing with this conference.   J It’s been so cool to be able to listen to it live a half a country away.  In fact, they said that more people are listening to the conference via the Internet than are actually attending the conference.  Isn’t technology wonderful?  Well, usually, anyway.  haha

I have especially enjoyed the music, both at the conference and what they play online while they’re at lunch or whatever.  What a treat!  I haven’t heard a pipe organ like that in years!

Okay, so the conference will be over tomorrow, but the website has good stuff on it for probably forever.   J  

Oh, and you can also get John’s free podcasts downloaded to your computer or smart phone.   

I have listened to them for years and years (before there were podcasts!) while I practiced my calligraphy.  

I love a good 2-fer!  ♥ ♥ ♥

Anyway, I bring all this up to share this fabulous quote that they said today:

"It's not that we get more of the Holy Spirit,
it's that He gets more of us."  
-- Steve Lawson

Isn’t that a good one??

XOXO,
Lucky Dog


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Zyflamend--My Newest Favorite Product



Do you know about Zyflamend?
It’s for inflammation.

You know *everything* is about inflammation, isn’t it?

Heart disease, high cholesterol, arthritis,
fibromyalgia, even my hypothyroidism…

I forgot that.

So when Mr. Man was needing some more Zyflamend 
(it keeps his elbows from hurting),
I realized that I needed some, too!

Like I’ve always said, I may be slow, but I eventually figure it out.  LOL

Here is a link to their website,
so you can read about all their products:

And here is a link to their main product on Amazon,
so you can read all the reviews:

(And you know how much I love to read Amazon reviews!)
J

XOXO,
Lucky Dog


Thursday, October 10, 2013

From Homemade to Handmade


Well, it happened again.  
I keep learning things the hard way when I knit!
J

So I began knitting that Basketweave Scarf for Mr. Man,
you know, and soon I realized: 

the edges were all so bumpy!


I was following the pattern all right,
but they didn’t have any provision
for making the edges pretty.

It didn’t bother Mr. Man, but it bothered me. 
And after awhile, I just couldn’t stand it anymore. 
So off to the Internet I went, searching for help.

I wasn’t sure if I could just add an edge, or what,
so I looked on Ravelry for a pattern that could help me out. 

Unfortunately most of them were just like the one I was using. 

Boo…

Then I used Mr. Google and, voilĂ ,
I found someone who addressed the edge treatment
that she used on her basketweave scarf pattern.  (!)

She adds 2 stitches to the pattern,
one on each end of the row. 

She slips the first one purlwise,
and knits the last one on the row.

This makes for a very lovely “chain” edge on your scarf,
which looks so nice and professional. 

It’s those kind of details that can take something
from “homemade” to “handmade”.   ♥♥♥

So, off to unravel again.  J

But in all my researching, I also found
a basketweave pattern that included 2 knit rows
in the pattern repeat. 

Ooh, I was happy about that…

You see, the Basketweave Scarf is just a lot of knits and purls. 
You knit 4 and then you purl 4,
and then you knit 4 and purl 4. 

And so on and so on. 

And when you switch back and forth
between those two stitches so much,
things just got a bit floppy to me.

This knit row is just the ticket to “cinch” things up
every once in awhile.

So, I tried the pattern with these 2 changes
and it works out great!


And along with a pretty edge,
my new pattern even makes the scarf reversible.
That is, the pattern is the same on both sides.

How great is that??

So, whether it’s knitting or whatever you’re into these days,
persevere!  Don’t settle!

As homemaker/cooking TV star, Beverly Nye, would say: 
“You’ll be so glad you did!” 

J  J  J

XOXO,
Lucky Dog


Friday, October 4, 2013

Saturday, September 28, 2013

5 Months Old



Well, our little kitten is turning into a cat.

“They grow up so fast...” 
<sniff, sniff>
hahaha

When you adopt a kitten at 12 weeks old (3 months),
you really have less than 2 months to enjoy them as a kitten.
<le sigh>

OTOH, we are also enjoying watching him turn into a cat. 

He used to jump into the refrigerator every time I opened it,
and the pantry, too.  <aarrgghhh>

I nearly decapitated him more than once,
closing the pantry doors without knowing
he was racing at them to get in! 

He also races through the house at breakneck speed
when he's having a kitten fit.

We call him “the white tornado”,
because he’s just a white streak going by!

In fact, Mr. Man told me that when he hears the galloping coming,
he just freezes, so the kitten doesn’t accidentally trip him.

Used to, the dog ran down the house
with the kitten following him.

Now the dog runs down the house
and the kitten passes him!
J

Kitten fits are crazy and fun, 
but calm and relaxing is nice, too.

Oh, and have I mentioned his fabulous purring?? 

Now, that’s a little slice of heaven right there. 
♥♥♥

XOXO,
Lucky Dog
J



Thursday, September 26, 2013

This and That


Well, my dear bloggy friends, I haven’t meant to neglect you -- I just haven’t found myself with all that much to talk about lately.

I have warned y’all that I don’t have very many words in me for someone with a blog, so please forgive me if I share photos and cartoons and favorite quotations instead of yakking about this or that or that or this.

Hey, I just realized:  y’all might prefer that -- oh my!  LOL  J

We are doing well...  The kitten is adorable, the knitting is therapeutic, last night was class #3 on “Systematic Theology”, and I even had a breakthrough in the Studio today.  J

Life is going along gently, and that’s kinda nice.

Here is a photo of the progress on the scarf that I am knitting:


I am using Alpaca Sox yarn by Classic Elite Yarns.  It is a delicious yarn with variegated colors of blue-purple to lavender to grape and back again.  It has been really nice to knit with.

I realize, of course, that a richly variegated yarn probably isn’t the best choice for this lace pattern, but I just love it so much, hopefully it won’t matter.

(Knowing me, I will probably knit the same pattern someday with a laceweight solid-colored or tonal yarn.  Not that I’ve already picked out the yarn that I would use or anything like that.)   J !!!

You see, usually the maxim is:  The simpler the yarn, the more complex the stitches. Likewise, the busier the yarn, the simpler the stitches.  Or something like that.

Maybe I’ll remember that next time, but don’t count on it!  Sometimes I get a little carried away by a particular yarn.  ♥♥♥

In the meantime, I just began knitting a scarf for Mr. Man.  I’m using the softest yarn that I could find:  Chalet, by Classic Elite Yarns.  It is a curiously-formed yarn -- with kind of like a chain structure, no, it’s really more like one of those Chinese finger pulls.  Do you remember those? 


But oh, the yarn is so soft!

And I’m using a simple Basketweave pattern, which I hope will yield a very manly scarf.  (No lace knitting here!)  And I’m using a rich charcoal grey color.  Yummy!


Otherwise, we are enjoying the beginnings of fall here. 

That means we are having some cooler temperatures, which is such a blessing, but it also means that it’s the season for ragweed pollen, and that is never a good thing for some of us.

It almost makes one wish for an early freeze, but I would hate to lose the leaves off the trees quite yet.  It’s just too bad Fall doesn’t last longer…

Well, to pumpkins and pansies!  J

XOXO,
Lucky Dog





Sunday, September 22, 2013

Yikes



Maybe I shouldn't have used the flash!
LOL



Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Kitten Photo of the Day



Peacefully coexisting.
For now, anyway!

♥♥♥



Monday, September 9, 2013

The Moon and Venus




Mr. Man and I went out last night with the camera and tripod 
to try to capture the really cool alignment of
the moon and Venus.

Did you happen to see it??

The moon was a beautiful crescent all this weekend, 
and last night Venus was tucked in right next to it 
for a really great photo opportunity.  J

We had to drive to a high point in the area 
(we couldn’t see it from our house)
and the dog was happy to jump in the car
with us for a quick outing.

But while we were taking a few snaps,
we heard a really strange sound.

We looked up and saw a creature, 
but neither of us could make it out at first.  

It turned out to be a fox, 
but the noise it made was kinda feline in nature, 
so we were a little concerned that it might be a bobcat.

But it was just a nervous fox, 
pacing at our intrusion into her personal stargazing space. 
haha  

But it didn’t yip or bark.  It was an odd sound.
When I came home, I read on the Internet 
that foxes are mysterious that way.  
They can make very unusual calls.

I just love going out with Mr. Man for these celestial events. 
It’s always an adventure!

XOXO,
Lucky Dog

p.s.  It sounds like we were out in the boonies, 
but we were really just in our church parking lot! 
J


Friday, August 30, 2013

Knitting Quote



“The rhythmic and repetitive quality of the stitching, 
along with the needles clicking resembles a calming mantra,”

explains Dr. Herbert Benson, a professor at Harvard Medical School
and the author of The Relaxation Response.

“The mind can wander while still focusing on one task.”


Thursday, August 29, 2013

Kitten Cuteness



Well, the kitten is just as cute as he can be.

I’ve refrained from posting a flood of photos to the blog,
'cause you know how travel/baby photos can be...

And with the iPhone at my side,
I have been taking lots.  J


(They say that the best camera
is the one you have with you,
and they are so right!

I have gotten many photos
that I would have missed
if I had had to run go get my camera.)


Anyway, he is growing so fast!

He is more A Miniature Cat now,
instead of a kitten.

And his Ragdoll fur has “sprouted”.
He has a ruff now!


Okay, okay.  I could go on all day,
But I’ll quit with only these few.

I wish you could hear him purr….
He has quite the motor!

XOXO,
Lucky Dog








Monday, August 19, 2013

Unraveled



Sometimes when you knit, 
you find that a project just doesn’t do it for you anymore.


Probably the pattern and the yarn 
aren’t well suited for each other, and you can sense it.

I found that I disliked how loose this shawl was knitting up, 
and realized that I should quit “forging ahead”, 
and just do something about it.

So, I made the decision to unravel it.

It is a big decision, after all. 


But I knew I would be happier 
if I began again on smaller needles, 
and perhaps use an easier stitch.  

Life is too short.

Non-knitters are usually horrified 
to see all that work being unraveled.  haha

They see it as time wasted, I guess.  
I don’t.  I figure I’m knitting anyway.  

But I’m also thrilled that I can unravel if I want to.  
Or if I need to.

You see, in my other life I am a lettering artist.  A calligrapher.


If you get to the bottom of a page of calligraphy 
and you misspell a word, there’s no unraveling.
  
And rarely can you “erase” a mistake in lettering 
without the paper looking too damaged to continue.  
(because you use a razor blade)

So I think it’s a glorious thing to be able to 
UN-do my knitting and do something else with the yarn!

And most yarns are very forgiving, 
and let you use them again and again.  

(Now Rowan Kidsilk Haze can be tricky, 
especially at the ends of rows, 
but I have unknitted quite a bit of it, too.)

J


So now I can start fresh and make something else with this yarn.

Perhaps a simple garter stitch shawl.  Nice and mindless.  
Every knitter needs a mindless project in her collection of WIPs. 
(Works in Progress)  


Besides, I need something to balance all that lace knitting! 
LOL

XOXO,
Lucky Dog





Saturday, August 10, 2013

Casting On



That is soooo true...

Ditto for buying more yarn,
despite a closet full at home.


I just cast on for a new lace project!

The yarn is my favorite, Rowan Kidsilk Haze.
It is a combination of silk and mohair.

Yummy!

XOXO,
Lucky Dog