Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Knitting Olympics

If you are a knitter you may have heard of the "Knitting Olympics" . The winter version is taking place right now, because, of course, the Winter Olympics is taking place right now. I am not an official participant, but lots of knitters join the group at Ravelry or Yarn Harlot.
I guess this could be somewhat controversial since the Yarn Harlot has been doing the Knitting Olympics longer, but was going to not do it this year due to the heavy involvement of the new Ravelry group. But her faithful blog readers urged her on and she is running the competition again. The gist of it is you pick out a challenging knitting project before the Olympics begin. You may swatch and adjust for needle size and yarn preference, and then as the opening ceremonies begin, you cast on. Knit like crazy for the duration of the Olympics and finish by the time the closing ceremonies are on TV. Participants who finish their project get a button for their blog, and bragging rights among other knitters.
I am working on a sweater that I would like to finish by the time the Olympics draws to a close, but I just don't have that drive to finish that I would had I been an olympian. My problem was that I had already begun the sweater, so I couldn't use it for an olympic project and would have had to pick something else. I already have too many UFOs (unfinished objects) around the house in both the knitting and quilting venues, so I am not a participant this year, but I am cheering on those who are knitting their way to gold.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Everything is Illuminated

We rented the movie Everything is Illuminated and watched it Saturday night. Here is the trailer.
Jonathan, a young Jewish American man, goes on a journey to Ukraine, looking for the woman who saved his grandfather's life during WWII. Reading that sentence makes it sound pretty somber, but it really isn't. Jonathan's traveling companions are a young Ukrainian man and his grandfather, and the grandfather's dog, Sammy Davis Jr. Jr. The young man serves as the translator, but he is not so "primo" with his English, and the best parts of the movie are when the cultural divide is bridged.
We gave it 2 thumbs up.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Been a while (again!)

We have another wintery weather forecast for tonight and tomorrow. The weather has been getting us down in the dumps. I know it is February and it is still winter, but most years we get a few breaks: some warm days where the snow melts and the sun shines. Some winters we don't even get 3 inches total in snowfall. I did hear someone say that the cold, cold temps we had earlier in the winter might kill some of the insects that have become such a problem for gardners. Hey, I am trying to look at the positives. And, sometimes it is really very beautiful outside; like when the fog freezes on the trees and everything is ghostly white, and then sparkles when the sun comes out. But the sun doesn't come out very much.
Anyway, to beat the winter blahs Dave and I have taken a two short overnight trips. A week ago we went to Nebraksa City and stayed at Lied Lodge. It is a beautiful spot, even in the winter. They have a great swimming pool, and wonderful food. My only complaint would be that it is kind of expensive, and the room we got on this visit was not that great. (Note to self: do not stay in Room 320 again--immediately ask for another one if the hotel desk clerk tries to give you this one.) We should have asked for another room right away, and I really can't say why we didn't. It had a murphy bed--can you believe that? It was not comfortable, and there was extra furniture that was kind of in the way. I guess that was to sit in if you put the murphy bed up in the wall. After supper we sat in the bar, which was cool, and then in that wonderful lobby with the gorgeous fire place. The next day I went for a long walk around the grounds and tried to find the tree adventure place. I finally saw it off in the distance, but I was pretty cold by that time and decided to walk back to the hotel. I wanted to find out if it would be a good place to bring the grandkids sometime.
Last night we stayed at the Embassy Suites in LaVista. This is my favorite hotel. We got two rooms that were adjoining and had all the grandkids with us for at least part of the time. Dan stayed overnight to help with crowd control. If I could take the swimming pool from the Lied Lodge and move it to the Embassy Suites in LaVista, that would be the perfect hotel. The Embassy Suites hotel pool is fine, (but not as fine as the one at the Lied Lodge), the hot tub is great, and the breakfast tasted really good. We did it up right, had room service for supper, watched cartoons on the TVs (we had four televisions in the 2 rooms!) and generally had a good time.

Friday, February 5, 2010

These slides are from several weeks ago when Dave decided it was time for our donkey to get out into the pasture again.

Here are some pictures I took today while I was out snow shoeing. Heck, if we are going to have 5 more inches of snow, I might as well enjoy it!