Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Merry Christmas

Today was rainy and the little snow we have is dwindling quickly. If it gets cold enough tonight I expect the roads will be very icy tomorrow. I have mixed feelings about the weather. It is nice not to be out shoveling deep snow, but it certainly feels weird not to have -0°F temperatures. None of the snowmobile trails are open and I'm sure the local businesses are hurting. We've hardly needed the wood stove except to take the damp out of the air in the evening. I am thankful that the chickens are handling the seesawing temps all right. They are still laying, too. Yesterday I gathered four eggs! (Which was good because yesterday I dropped the bucket of eggs I was going to wash and I broke every last one of them. Ugh.)

I have been knitting and reading. I made several hats and pairs of mittens, and with some of the wool from the yarn I received from the fleece I shared with my friend, Sally, (did I mention in my previous post that her husband's father was a Navajo code talker during World War II?) I have started knitting myself another cardigan sweater, this time incorporating simple 5-stitch cables and seed stitch.

I am looking for an old crock pot that is big enough to make some hot batch soap in and I stopped at the thrift store in Phillips to see if they had any. They did not, but a large red and gold scarf dangling on the scarf rack caught my eye. I could tell immediately that it had been woven because of the twist in the fringe and I wanted to take a closer look at it. The gorgeous feather pattern was reversible and the scarf was large enough to wear as a shawl. The price was right. It was marked $1.50 and I bought it. Later I discovered a label on it that said 100% Pashmina. Well, I had no idea what that was so I looked it up on the Internet. It turns out that Pashmina is the finest kind of cashmere wool. However, according to the Wiki article, the label should not read 100% Pashmina because that is not a label recognized in the United States by the Federal Trade Commission. Shawls this size sell for around $200 and I have not come across any on the Internet that have this lovely a pattern. The fabric drapes heavenly and it is light and very warm. I just love it. I'm sure it is an authentic Pashmina shawl despite the illegal label. As most of the items at the thrift store come from decedent estates, I look at the shawl as a gift sent to me from some deceased little old lady's ghost that knew I would appreciate so fine a weaving. I have no idea how old the shawl is, but I expect to love it for the rest of my life.

I also went to the Christian Mission Thrift Store in Park Falls still looking for a large crock pot, again to no avail, but there I did find a smashed up DVD of the movie Jurassic Park for $2.00. The cover was shot, but the DVD looked OK so I bought that for Ed. Then, I almost stepped on a professionally framed double matted Norman Rockwell print that was just laying on the floor. Anyone who knows me knows I love anything Norman Rockwell. It was a print of "The Runaway". I got a strong impression when I picked up the picture that it had once belonged to a policeman. Well, I had to have that, too, for $7.00. "The Runaway" is now hanging in our center hallway next to my print of "Sunset" where it will be joined after Christmas by my Christmas gift to myself of "Refugee Thanksgiving".  And when I got home I ran the Jurassic Park DVD through Lara's SkipDr, popped it into the DVD player for Ed and the disk played like new.

Christmas here will be quiet. Tomorrow I'll visit Dad and take him his annual supply of pipe tobacco. Dad has not decided whether or not he will join us on Christmas Day for dinner.  (I expect he will eat a big dinner tomorrow with my sister, Mary and her family, and will not feel like eating a second big dinner on Christmas Day.) We will be having pork roast, sauerkraut, and dumplings with a Raspberry Bavarian for dessert. I baked cinnamon rolls and some Christmas cookies to munch on throughout the day.

I wish you all a Blessed and Happy Christmas!