Thursday, February 22, 2007

On Our Way to Orlando

We are on the way to Florida, leaving our home in Michigan yesterday morning. There it was cold and the ground was covered with snow. A warm up was coming so there was thick fog everywhere, making it a little difficult to see ahead on the road. We headed out about 8:30 AM and by early afternoon we had driven out of the fog and snow. Last night we stayed in Chattanooga, TN. It is quite mild here; a light sweater is good enough. By this evening we should be in Florida.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Crafty Grandma Report

Tom and Kelly's baby is due to arrive in May. They decided not to find out if the baby will be a boy or girl, so in making baby items, I needed to chose a neutral color. ( I am predicting a boy!) We will all be going to Orlando this week, and there will be a baby shower for Kelly next weekend. I have been finishing my baby projects and here they are!
First is the Baby Surprise sweater, my favorite baby pattern. It's so much fun to have stripes knit so neatly into a sweater. I made two caps
because I couldn't decide which pattern I liked the best. The cap on the upper side looks a little more feminine to me, and the other looks more like a cap for a boy.

Next is a baby blanket that I knit from squares in various patterns, making up things as I went along. I finished this just yesterday afternoon. For every square I started with 30 stitches and chose a stitch pattern from my books, knitting until a square was completed. Then I stitched the squares together, and knit an edging around the whole thing.

I always like to make baby quilts. It's very interesting to see how the colors and patterns go together. Gabriel and Scarlett still have theirs. I always sign them on the back and I have hopes they can keep them for a long time. I guess I want them to remember me! Here is the quilt that I finished just a few days ago. The fabric is basically Winnie the Pooh print with coordinating colors and fabrics. Can you see the patchwork ball sitting on the quilt? One of my former students taught me how to make this ball. It is a very practical first toy for a baby because it is soft and light so that a baby can easily hold it and begin to catch it. Also it can be thrown into the washer as needed.
I love to make baby things, but most of all, I love babies!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Saturday Night
Saturday night we got dressed up and went to a party. This was a very special occasion because usually you can find me in a t shirt or turtleneck plus jeans or casual pants. This is where we went:

Hearts for Orphans Fundraiser

Get your tickets now for the
4th Annual St. Valentine's Day Dinner,
Dance and Silent Auction


February 10, 2007
6:00 P.M.

Last April a group of about 25 of us went to the Philippines to attend the opening of the Lingap Center for Children, an orphanage for 100 abused and neglected children in Toledo City, Cebu, the Philippines. The Lingap Center was conceived by John Drake, a businessman in our small town, and supported by many in the community. Please see more about the Lingap Center here.

We had a very nice time. It was a festive occasion with a lovely dinner, entertainment, and an update about the Center. About 360 people attended on a very cold night.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Who and Where?

Who is this rosy cheeked baby? And where did he go? Can you believe he's forty years old today?

Forty years later.

And the generations go on.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Last Weekend

Steve and Marta had an event to attend Saturday evening so Tony and I went to stay with Gabriel. (The weather was pretty bad as you can see in the previous post, but everyone was fine.) The beautiful couple got dressed up and the lucky grandparents got to play with their grandson.

Gabriel loves to play "hide and seek". When he finds me, I jump out at him and he laughs really hard. Also we play ball, trucks, cars, and read books together. It is just as much fun for me as for him. There is nothing better than being down on the floor playing just like a kid again. This is the most wonderful thing about being a grandmother (and I admit, the most surprising) : I get to be a kid again!

Gabriel loves his "moto". He probably would prefer to ride this outside, but spring will come sometime.

Gabriel is a very helpful boy. He is very interested in cleaning, having learned from his mom. He takes out the vacuum cleaner, making motor sounds while pretending to clean. He drags a chair to the sink, washes himself, the sink, and whatever else he can find. He has toy cleaning equipment, cleaning his toys and whatever else is around. Marta and I think he will make some lucky girl a fine husband someday!


West Michigan, where Steve and Marta live, gets really heavy snowfall at this time of the year. "Lake effect" snow causes the winds and moisture from Lake Michigan to dump snow on their part of the state. Recently the snow has been much heavier for them than it is for us in the middle of the state. Last weekend Steve acquired a new snowblower and here he is demonstrating it. I think he should appear in a commercial for this product! His driveway is quite long so with heavy snow like this, a snowblower is an important piece of equipment. Gabriel would probably love to be outside playing in the snow, but it is just too cold with temperatures down to 0 F. or below. Conditions like this make us all look forward to warmer days of spring.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Winter Vacation

We just spent a few days in Cancun, Mexico, escaping Michigan's cold January weather. We stayed at the Riu Cancun, a very beautiful hotel with a lovely beach and excellent restaurants. Here I am our first day just getting acquainted with all areas in the hotel. It offered four restaurants, several pools, the water and beach, and excellent service.

Here is a view of the beach and nearby hotels Tony took from the top floor of the hotel. It is amazing to experience this beautiful place, just three and a half hours from Detroit where winter snows are hitting hard.

This is just one of the buffet counters in one of the restaurants, which offered every possible food choice in every kind of cuisine. (That's not me in the picture!) One of the restaurants was Japanese, which we enjoyed one evening. The first day we wanted to eat a lot; subsequent days we began to eat less and less. Since the hotel was all inclusive, it was possible for guests to eat and drink in great excess, if you were to choose this. The food was fabulous. My favorites were the fresh fruits and vegetables. Tony enjoyed the paella which was served one night when the theme was "Spanish night".

We took long walks, read books, relaxed on the beach, and generally just took it easy.

More winter vacation pictures

Now we are back home in Michigan's winter. Today we are at Steve and Marta's house where a mild blizzard is going on!