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Little Clover and his Great Grandmother

Little Clover and his Great Grandmother

Christmas, for us, usually ends the weekend after New Year’s Eve when we finally have the opportunity to celebrate the holiday with my family in Nashville. One of the highlights is to to spend time with my Grandma, and to see Little Clover with her. She is not just my grandma, but an incredibly vibrant remarkable woman with a sparkling gleam in her eye and a spry hop to her step. Her Christmas card in the mail still makes me smile and I’m tickled that Little Clover has been able to have her in his life for as long as he has.

Grandma came with us to visit my mom’s grave and we visited the others who have passed through our lives. Honestly, my Grandma brings life to the cemetery with her stories, almost always humorous. Her stories continued when Italian and I dropped her off at home. She invited us in, and we jumped at the opportunity. We followed her into the study where she pulled out a few old albums filled with pictures and accounts from the 1800s. For the first time, I saw pictures of her parents as well as her great grandfather. We read wills from 1828, where a bed, furniture, and a cow and calf were left to the heirs. Finally, after over two hour, Little Clover called to check on us. He then reprimanded us for staying out to late and we had to bid my Grandma good night. As a parting gift, she lent me the photo albums. I think my new laptop has found it’s special purpose in life.

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Where I am an idiot

In spite of what I may have put on my Apple customer survey, I am an idiot. For the last few years, adding photos to a blog post worked best if I followed a series of steps:
1. Take picture
2. Find camera transfer cable
3. Attach camera to laptop via transfer cable
4. Transfer photos
5. Upload photo to an Picasa Web
6. Add photo to blog

That’s a lot of steps, but they didn’t feel like a lot of steps for a long time. Today, they seem like way too many steps because I realized with my new blog, I can just upload the photos straight from my laptop, and since my laptop can read my photo memory card, I don’t have to hunt for my cable any more. Zip! My photo can just appear on the blog! Trust me when I say I’m an idiot because it took me this long to figure it out. To celebrate my sudden realization of my idiocy, here is a gratuitously cute picture of children.

Gratuitously cute children

Little Clover and the Princess spent some quality time together during our Christmas break. The Princess is modeling the Whirligig I knit for her. Being afraid it might be too small, I forced it on her and Little Clover made her smile while we took the photo.

And just because I can, here’s another picture:

Full Irish Breakfast


We had to modify our New Year’s tradition this year, so instead of heading to the river on New Year’s Eve and cooking a big meal at midnight to ring in the year, we stayed home and cooked a big breakfast instead, a full Irish. Well, it is sorta a full Irish. We couldn’t find blood sausage, so we just had bangers, Canadian bacon, fried eggs, fried tomatoes, baked beans, and sautéed mushrooms. Honestly, it was an excellent first meal, and possibly a new tradition.

And finally a new blog post. Really, this year, I’d like to crank out a few more post than last year. I’m hoping the new laptop, which actually reads my photo card, will help. The laptop is a bit like a beacon, calling to me from my desk, “Hello! I’m pretty, type on me.” Really, it says that. Italian was super sweet when he gave it to me. He smiled and comment that since I was probably going to get one anyway this year, he might as well get credit for it; and he’s right.

I’ll also have a bit more time to write this week since I’m confined to the sofa. It seems I’m not able to land a triple axle, nor can I perform a simple little spin on skates. The three of us received ice skates for Christmas and have been spending multiple days at the new rink in town.

Ice skating by Irish Clover
Ice skating, a photo by Irish Clover on Flickr.

Little Clover handles himself much better on the ice. He at least falls with grace — and without injury. One day, I strive to be like that. On the other hand, my knitting and I have become better acquainted. With my foot propped up and Italian insistent I remain immobile, I had plenty of time to finish Italian’s mitts and start a new project. Oh, how I hope to walk and drive again soon.

Prepared

While the midwest is being slammed with snow, our temperatures are still in the 60s. The above freezing temperatures haven’t deterred us and we are determined to be prepared when the snow comes. The rain may be falling outside, but we have a sled! Italian hasn’t completely bought into the idea we need a sled. Little Clover and I are still resolutely doing our best to show the usefulness of a sled especially since we may only get one snow a season. Our sled is a beautiful blue saucer type and it makes a handy laundry carrier, balancing seat when watching movies, Lego holder and sorter while building, an excellent training tool for working on your posture, and finally, it is a magnificent shield. Italian is weakening to the wonder that is a blue saucer style sled.

The mitts he’s getting for Christmas are helping him get into the winter spirit. It’s difficult to turn away from the powers of a pair of hand knit fingerless mitts. Because I want these to be just right, they aren’t a surprise and he’s trying them on as they grow. He loves the sheen and the softness and has been asking about the fiber content. I’ve refused to tell him because I want him to use them for fishing and feared he wouldn’t if he knew they are a cashmere blend. The softness and warmth of the mitts might be too much for him to resist. I think he’s going to wear them no matter what they are made of.

Reloaded

I’ve learned a lot over this, most recent, blogging break. Firstly, I’ve learned how much I love writing and how much I miss it. Hopefully, this will translate into more post. I’ve learned I prefer WordPress over Blogger and the options I have now with the move. Lastly, I’ve learned I wasn’t writing to my mom, nor for her. Instead, I cataloging Little Clover’s life. My blog posts are all stories for him, so that one day, when he wants to remember life when he was small, he can look back and get a glimpse at his growing up adventure.

As the weather creeps towards 70F today, I give you a picture of snow, the yin and the yang of our existence and the whimsy that is our household.

Snow Dec 2011 by Irish Clover
Snow Dec 2011, a photo by Irish Clover on Flickr.

It’s good to be back.

A few nights ago while Italian worked late, Little Clover and I settled in for a movie night. Getting into the Halloween spirit, we decided to watch a classic, Monster Squad. The setting inside was perfect. We turned the lights off and popped some popcorn. At one point, I got the creepy feeling one feels of eyes watching or someone being present who shouldn’t be. I looked at Spot, happily grooming himself at our feet. He usually can sense when something is out of the ordinary. Then I looked at the door and noticed shadows on our porch, people shaped shadows, and an unlocked door. I tiptoed to the door, bolted the lock, and flipped on the porch light. The shadows scattered and I jumped back to catch my breathe. Peeking out of the window, I saw a maroon truck speed by and honk. Looking further, I noticed shadows in the trees. I opened the door and burst out laughing. We had been TP! Toliet paper streamed from our trees, covered our bushes, showered down from my car! I had interrupted the pranksters while they were in the middle of covering our porch.

From Irish Clover

Little Clover and I stepped out and admired the quality workmanship and had a big laugh. We walked back in and settled back into the movie. After a few minutes, I bolted up and yelled, “The sheep!” Running back outside, we found him.

From Irish Clover

He had been mummified!

We did find out who the skilled pranksters were, but we aren’t suppose to know. A few girls from Little Clover’s class were having a sleep over when they decided to roll our house. Trust me when I saw we feel honored! The best part of it, one of the moms was the driver for the girls. I love his classmates.

In Silence

There is much activity

So much activity, in fact, that the blog has been silent for almost two months. What’s been going on, you ask (or don’t ask because you are no longer reading)? Well, pull up a chair and pour a brew and I’ll tell you.

I started a new job, sorta. I still work for the same company, in the same department, but I’m now on a new team and I’ve switched from being an “individual contributor,” as we call it, to a manager. The switch took place while we were in Ireland and became official when we returned. Work greeted me with a new team, new responsibilities, and two weeks of backlog. I’m finally feeling somewhat back in control, but I still have plenty of days when I feel as if I have no idea what I’m doing and someone is going to walk into my office, ask if I had fun, and tell me it’s time to go back to my old job now. I’m also still trying to figure out what being a manger means, so if any of you have any pointers, please, please, please send them my way. Fortunately for me, my team is extremely patient and kind and they are taking good care of me. They even gave me a card for Boss’s Day!

In addition to starting a new job, Little Clover and I turned another year older. This is the last (gulp) pre-teen year for us. Already, Little Clover is meeting up with friends at the movies, with the expectation Italian and I will just drop him off. We’re all working through this. I’ll let you know how it goes. He is also asking for his own phone. I asked who he would call and text. He repsonded with his “You know, my friends.” He’s been practicing his texting skills with Mrs. Soprano’s phone, texting away with his uncle and me, his mama.

For my birthday, my family spoiled me yet again by chipping in for this:

From Irish Clover

It is the Schacht Sidekick traveling wheel, and it is awesome. It’s like my very own transformer and I don’t have to share her. She does spin very well and her bobbins are interchangeable with the Matchless, making her a perfect companion. With some luck, she’ll rack up a couple of frequent flyer miles sometime in the future.

Next to the wheel is our very own sheep. We’ve named him Shaun. Shaun has quite a few adventures. He wanders across our yard, grazing from spot to spot. When I walk out in the morning, I’m never sure where he’s going to be. One day, he even broke free from the pasture and made it all the way to the driveway. Another day, we returned from a weekend trip and he was in the flowerbeds. The neighborhood dogs have finally become accustomed to him and no longer growl when they walk by. The neighborhood kids, still pop out to check his location. His biggest adventure occured one night when Little Clover and I were home alone.

Tune in tomorrow to hear about Shaun’s biggest adventure.