Thursday, April 26, 2012

Who's Keeping Score?

I've been slacking off on my blogging a bit lately.  I did meet a friend for a walk on Tuesday, but left the camera at home.  It was nice to just walk and talk.  But, I missed a chance to take a picture of a muskrat, or was it an otter, swimming along the shore.  Jody says muskrat, but I'm not too sure.  A missed opportunity. 

I had another one of those "there goes the batteries" days.  I looked at the fresh pack on my dresser, but decided to chance it.  Sure enough, after my first shot the camera started beeping to let me know the batteries had had it.   Thought I'd just walk and not worry about pics, but then I saw all kinds of activity by the Big Beach.  Kayaks in the water.  LOTS of kayaks.  And me, without batteries!  

I called Catboy and he agreed to grab my fresh batteries and drive them over to me.   He's a good kitten!   After a honk and a pack of fresh ones flung through the window at me, I was good to go.

I found out Midwest Mountaineering was showing kayaks and canoes, giving people a chance to try them out before buying.

While I was watching all the folks on the water, I noticed an eagle flying over.   I'm guessing it was the one that used to nest behind the 5-8 Club.  The nest blew down a year or so ago.  Don't know where they're nesting now, there was a pair, and one baby that I know of, but they're still using the territory.  I tried hard to get pictures, but he was a bit too high and moving too fast for my camera.  Another miss.

I was lucky enough to be serenaded by this robin though, and it sat still for me!

There had to be a hundred carp surfacing along the bridge this afternoon.   Much better shot than the ones from last week.   But, YUCK! 

So, for those keeping score - two misses, the muskrat (or otter) and the eagle.  A near miss - the multitude of kayakers, and a save - the carp.   A bonus - the robin.  And then there's this..............

Can you smell it?

Monday, April 23, 2012

A Different Lake

I had a fabulous long weekend at The Lake, only it was a different lake.  15 of us spent four days at Bug Bee Hive resort on beautiful Lake Koronis near Paynesville, MN, for our third annual knitting retreat.

Our lovely digs!   We had the two upper units, side by side, that opened at the center to make it one gigantic unit.  We had two living rooms, two kitchens, eight bedrooms and eight bathrooms.   We shared cooking duties and clean up.  We drank wine.  We knit, and knit and knit.   We went for long walks and we swam and used the whirlpool at the lodge.   We stayed up late, or went to bed early.  No rules.   I brought along my espresso machine and opened 'Cafe Catwoman' a couple of times each day.   I can definitely find a job as a Batista if need be!

Friday 7:30 a.m.

Friday 7:30 p.m.
What a beautiful day!   What a wonderful weekend!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Bad Picture Day

I've only walked The Lake once this week- yesterday.  Just started across the bridge when I ran into my wonderful friend, Jody.  She was already about three-quarters of the way around, but agreed to turn back and walk with me.   We haven't had a chance to walk together in a very long time. 

While on the bridge we noticed lots of carp surfacing and then sinking back down.  I tried to get pictures, but they didn't turn out very well.   This is the best I could do.......

I noticed one loon near the Little Beach.  I've been watching for them.
He was also difficult to shoot.  Just when I had him in focus he'd dive.   Then I had to wait until he surfaced somwhere else - I always guessed in the wrong direction - and try to focus again.

This obviously will not go down in history as my best photo shoot ever!
The important thing is, I had a lovely walk with a very good friend on a beautiful day. 

I also ran into the guitar player, Brandon.   He greeted me with "Hi lady who took my picture, I'm sorry I can't remember your name."   I told him, and he shook my hand and said he'd remember next time.  Then he biked off with his guitar on his back. 

I wonder if he would have recognized me if I hadn't had my camera hanging from my neck?  Would I have recognized him without his guitar?  Probably not.  A lot of people have props of some sort that help distinguish them from the crowd. The novice bike rider and his dad.   If it was just the boy and the bike, or just the dad and the boy without the bike, I don't think I'd recognize them.   Same with Speedo Man.  If he was fully dressed and didn't have his two little white dogs with him, who would recognize him?  Not me!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Knitting Designer - YES I AM!

Happy Easter!   The Cat Family will be spending the afternoon with our niece Fluffy, and her family.   It's always fun to be with them.   The eight of us actually vacationed together at Disney World a few years ago, and we still like each other, even after sharing a house for a week, and being together constantly.   It was a great trip.  We even got to see a night launch of a space shuttle,  from our backyard pool while sipping wine and relaxing after a long day in one of the parks.   Doesn't get much better than that!

Well, it's official.  I SOLD, as in made money from, one of my knitting designs.  I posted it on Ravelry, which is a HUGE (over two million members world wide) site for knitters that is both social and practical.   I'm not going to list everything that can be done on that site, but it's a pretty amazing place.   Back to my pattern......  individuals can list patterns for sale as downloadable E-patterns.   We set up an account, upload the pattern and pictures and set a price.  The site does the rest and links any payments through your PayPal account.   I've had my pattern up for a little over a week now, and had my first sale today!   

This is the sock.  It's called Dani Sweetheart, after my darling daughter.   So now you know, Princess Kitty isn't her real name!

Why yes, that is a gargoyle being used as a foot rest.

I won't be able to retire anytime soon with only one sale, but, if I could get everyone on Ravelry to buy the pattern,  2.4 million users or so,  at $5 a pop, minus $5 for me, since  I own the pattern and don't need to buy it, and minus $5 for my Ravelry friend Zuzusunshine, who I gifted a copy to.  Oh, and if all of  my Facebook friends were to buy a copy too.   Even if they don't knit themselves, I'm sure they must know someone who does.  

 Hmmmmmmmm, maybe I can retire early!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Let Your Light Shine

Look how green everything is!   It seems like it happens overnight.

Yes, it's another tree.  I can't help myself.  They're all so beautiful and unique.  They have their own personalities.  This one is so graceful.  It seems feminine to me, a woman's shape and grace.  Unfortunately, her nipped waist is not so lovely when you look at her from the side.  

I'm wondering if they'll be removing her soon?
The Park Board has been leaving large limbs that fall partially into the lake, and decaying trees along the shoreline,  as part of their naturalization and habitat revitalization program.  But this one is right on the walking path.  Seems a little more dangerous to leave it.

The downed trees really are providing a lot more cover for the wildlife.  I've seen at least 5 pair of nesting mallards tucked in here and there.  I'm sure there's more.  I can't wait to see all the ducklings swimming around!

The Dandelions are making an appearance.  I don't know what the little blue flowers are, but they're very dainty.  They look like they could be a type of lobelia.

All the flowering trees are lovely, but they're triggering  my allergies, but, they won't be blooming for very long, and then things will quiet down.   In the meantime there's antihistamines and eyedrops.

I almost missed this:
   I'm trying!

These pictures were actually taken yesterday 4/6/12, but I didn't finish my editing last night.  Today is rainy and cold and gray. 

Sunday, April 1, 2012

April Fools

Not a single April Fools joke or prank did I hear today.   Has April Fools gone out of vogue?

I'm been trying to figure out if Mother Nature is playing a joke on us.  This warm weather is amazing.  It  got up to 88 in Pipestone today.  Crazy!   Is Mom toying with us?  Will there be one last big blizzard?   We put the shovels away, but have been afraid to run the gas out of the snowblower.  Why tempt fate, right?   I still have my snow brush in the car, just in case.   I saw people mowing today - no joke. 

Somebody obviously was joking with this guy - Dude, you're not going to catch a wave here!

I've never seen anyone fly fishing here before.   I sat on the wall by the small beach with a latte from Nokomis Beach Coffee, watching them for awhile - didn't see either one get even a strike, but I think they were just enjoying being out there.

I've been looking at this stump all winter.  Does X really mark the spot?  I have an urge to bring a shovel down and start digging.  Too obvious, or is that the point?  Hidden in plain sight? 

When I was sitting on the wall drinking my latte and watching the fly fishermen, I just had to take a picture of my new walking shoes - they weigh almost nothing!   They're New Balance, and I love them a lot!  And no, this is not a paid endorsement, though I'd be open to that.