Good Riddance 2008.

Life
New Years Eve at Borovets, outside hotel "...

Image via Wikipedia

Let’s just face it. 2008 sucked. Big time. And not just for me, it sucked for almost everyone I know. I am so ready to just move on. But first, I thought I would take a look back at the past year. Let’s look at the laundry list of suckage, if you will.

  1. The bad news started in October of 2007, really. With the untimely death of my step-brother. I didn’t really talk about it here in detail and I won’t go into detail now because thinking about it makes me sad. It was really horrible. My aunt died a couple of weeks later when she went in to have surgery. That was also really awful, obviously.
  2. The year started at the end January with “the great snowstorm of winter 2008” (hoo boy, if I knew then what I know now) When we came back from San Jose I was in shock at the amount of snow that was on the ground. I mean, the trees in our backyard were bent in half! At the time, I had never seen anything like it.  (As and aside, I can’t believe I took this picture a week later! It was already melting a week later? sigh.)
  3. In February (actually on my dad’s birthday) I got hit by a car while I was crossing the street on my way to work. Thankfully, I was okay. I was banged up a bit but I was o.k. I have been kind of twitchy regarding cars and crossing streets and parking lots. When I am crossing at a crosswalk I do not cross until the cars have stopped. And when they are slowing down to stop I don’t even trust them. I make eye contact with the driver of the car and stare him down so I know he/she actually sees me crossing the street. In other words, I do not trust cars. Ever.
  4. March was, relatively, uneventful (thank god) but, looking back, I really got tired of snow. I mean, it snowed on the first day of Spring! Stupid Mother Nature. Oh, and I turned 39. The last year of my thirties. which isn’t really a bad thing.
  5. In May I had a REALLY creepy experience with my massage therapist which pisses me off to this day. In fact, I was telling someone about it this morning. The sad thing is that I would really love to see an massage therapist right now because my freaking back is freaking killing because of all of this mother effing show shoveling I’ve been doing but because of the bad experience I had with this moron I’m hesitant.
  6. In June My kneecap popped out of its socket during a hike in the middle of a forest in Idaho. Also, I almost got hit by a car again while crossing an interestion to catch a bus.  Oh, and it fucking snowed. In June.
  7. July included probably one of the worst days of my life. Again, can’t go into any details but it was not pretty.
  8. In October my husband’s cousin passed away. He was not much older than me. We both felt really sad about it. He had his problems but I really liked the guy and felt really bad about his death.
  9. October was also the month of The Sickness. I started getting a sore throat while working at the annual Spokane is Spelling spelling bee. I helped all of the kids get onto the stage and directed them off of the stage. When I think about how sick I got and how many kids I probably infected it makes me hang my head. poor kids. I ended up actually completely losing my voice. It was gone for about a week. I had to actually write notes to people because I literally could not talk. It was really weird.
  10. November probably was the worst month of all. The Friday before Thanksgiving my step-dad had emergency brain surgery to remove a tumor the size of a golf ball from his frontal lobe. We found out he has lung cancer and that it had spread to his brain. I can’t imagine hearing about anything worse than that. The worst news I have ever gotten in my life. That weekend was filled with despair and worry, and then relief when he made it out of surgery o.k.
  11. December? I have one word. Snow. omyfuckinggod the snow. And to think that this all started only two weeks ago. I read in an article that in December alone we have gotten almost 60 inches of snow just this month alone! And you have to realize, that this has only been in the last two weeks! Way back in January I had no idea what a lot of snow is. The past two weeks have been absolutely insane. It’s actually getting kind of frightening. There are roofs collapsing all over town, including one at a supermarket and one at a gym. It’s really not a good situation.

Of course, it hasn’t been all bad. There have been some good things:

  1. I was in the media all over the place this year. Strangely, I didn’t really blog much about it. In January there was an article written about my mom and I regarding her watercolor painting and my photography. My picture was also in the paper to coincide with an aritcle about the Summer Reading Program. I was also in a little “commercial” for local public television that featured the library and how it helped students. And again I was in a commercial for a local television station’s “success by six” program in which I read a little bit of a picture book for a group of preschool kids. It was kind of fun being in the spotlight :). I actually had people come up to me saying, “I saw you on t.v.”
  2. My photos were in a little gallery showing (well, at a coffee house in the middle of nowhere) along with my mom. I actually sold 3 pieces. That was a wonderful ego boost.
  3. We went on some fun trips! We went to San Jose at the end of January, to Wallace Falls in June and Long Beach in March and August.
  4. I’ve been really enjoying learning about the principles of Zen. It has actually helped me get through a lot of rough times this past year.
  5. Obama won! This was such a huge relief. When I think about it I just feel a huge wave of relief roll over me. I know that he is going to be a fantastic president.

So what else is there to say? This has been a challenging year. I’m ready for something less dramatic in the upcoming months. Goodbye 2008!

Hope you all have a happy and safe new year!

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Crafty Monday: A couple of scarves

Craft

I haven’t posted much in the way of my crafty endeavors for a couple of weeks but, I assure you, I am crafting. Knitting, specifically. As you know, this has been a challenging couple of months (It’s been a challenging year, but that’s a whole other blog post). Knitting has really, really helped me get through these times. The repetitive motion of knitting calms me down. Keeps me sane. I knit a bunch of hats for Christmas presents. The first hat I made I really wish I had taken a picture of and blogged about. It actually was a gift for my step-dad. I decided I was going to make him a hat when I was visiting him in the hospital after he had his surgery. We were talking about what he was going to have to go through regarding his treatment and he mentioned that his hair would probably fall out from the radiation. I said, “I should make you a hat!” and he said, “That would be great!” and so it goes. So I went home and dug through my stash to see what I had and I found the absolute perfect yarn for this. It is some yarn that I got in Ocean Park, WA at a little yarn shop there (the yarn in the photo). Alpaca from a local Alpaca farm. The name of the Alpaca is right there on the label, Freedom, is his/her name. Ocean Park is a favorite vacation spot of our family so I knew this was perfect. It’s like this yarn was bought so that I could make him this hat. So I made him a simple top-down ribbed hat and he loves it! Success! It’s such a nice, masculine pattern so I went ahead and made two more, one for my brother in black, and one for my dad in brown.

Bens ScarfTo go with my brother’s hat I made him a scarf. It’s a pattern in the book “One Skein” by Leigh Radford. It is one of the ribbed quartet and the pattern is Double Cable scarf (or something like that). It’s a really easy, quick project. Perfect for gift knitting. He loved it! I always appreciate it, as I’m sure you do, when people truly appreciate my knitted gifts. So I was happy. And with all of the snow he needs it! Here’s the Ravelry info if you are so inclined.

A current ProjectI’m working on something for myself, too! It’s the Pfeiffer Falls Hooded scarf from the latest Interweave. I’m using a yarn I have never used before, Brown Sheep Nature Spun Worsted. I think this may be my new favorite yarn! It’s so smooshy and nice. But more on this project later. We had another snow day today so progress is being made and I should have it done by next Monday.

snowpocalypse

Photography
Here are some photos I took a week ago today when Raf and I went for a walk in our Neighborhood. We were having a snow day and still trying to dig out from under the 24 inches of snow that was dumped on us the day before. This is an intersection. Yeah, the side streets were pretty bad. Still are not the best but better than they were.

Still, when the sun is out, like it is at this moment as I type this, it is pretty. Very pretty, actually.

Since the “Big Dump” last week on Wednesday and Thursday we have gotten more snow. We had pretty significant snowstorms on Sunday and Christmas Eve, each bringing at least 5 inches. Things are supposed to warm up tomorrow and it’s is supposedly supposed to rain or be a really heavy, wet snow. This brings worries about the roof. We have A LOT of snow on our roof. Raf is going out today to buy a special device that you can use to rake snow off the roof.

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! Mine was surprisingly good, despite the horrific weather. I enjoyed my family time immensely.

The Hood

Photography

The Hood

Um. Yeah. We got DUMPED ON. In the past 24 hours 2 feet of snow accumulated. Apparently this is a record. I had to shovel the driveway 4 times yesterday. I went out every 2-3 hours until the snow stopped and each time I went out there had to be at least an inch of snow. Everything closed down yesterday including the library, where I work. The library is closed today, too. I’m kind of relieved because I would have been in charge today and I was worried that I would be the only staff person there! Many of our staff live below the “South Hill” and getting up the hill in this weather is literally impossible. I feel lucky because I don’t have to drive down any side streets to get around. My driveway is right off of a major road that is usually one of the first streets to get plowed in this weather. I just wanted to be sure I could get out of my driveway so that’s why I kept up with the shoveling yesterday.

Here is a picture of my street. I was standing right in front of my house when I took this. You can view some more shots that I took yesterday on Flickr. Check out this one of the planter I forgot to take down this fall!