Saturday, February 16, 2008

Fantastic Friday

Yesterday morning I had to get myself and Brian up and going so we could cover Rick's office for a few hours, so I didn't have time to go jogging. But as I headed to the barn to do chores, I was treated to an "electric baby blanket" sunrise, all vibrant pinks and blues. And as I stopped to give Valentine a parting scratch on my way back up to the house, Brava stepped up for some attention. Ah, the joy of being the instrument of bliss for TWO sweet chocolate sheep!

After Rick's secretary arrived, Brian and I left the clinic and sped through some errands (including dropping off all our tax stuff at the accountant's - YAY!) so we could be home by noon. That's when a cabinetmaker friend of ours was showing up to install laundry room cabinets. Finally - after more than five years in this house, I have some storage in this little space! The need was getting critical, too. We use the laundry room as Jackson's kennel, and he's getting tall enough to reach things atop the washing machine when he stands on his hind legs. Below are before (taken when Jackson could still fit in a crate) and after photos showing the transformation from bare walls to bountiful, beautiful wood. (See the gorgeous grain in the doors?) If you look closely at the last photo, it shows the short rod between the two big cabinets below the header beam where I can hang up shirts as I take them out of the dryer. (And yes, a door is missing; it should be on by Sunday.)
But wait – that's not all! On my way home I stopped by the post office since Adrienne said she mailed me a package. I learned about the "homemade gift Pay It Forward" challenge on her blog, and I took her up on it. Now, waiting for me at the post office, was a package from Illinois. It was so hard to wait until after I got home and after I helped hang cabinets to see what Adrienne had made for me! When you don't have any idea what has been sent, it is delicious anticipation. But the realization was even better! The first tissue-wrapped bundle contained these wristwarmers. Not only is the colorway and pattern stunning, they are incredibly soft, too.And see, Adrienne? They fit!The next tissue-wrapped bundle revealed a second pair of wristwarmers, this time in thick dark chocolate yarn.They fit perfectly, too - although I had to wrestle them from Brian to try them on!A THIRD parcel contained a scrumptious scarf to match the first wristwarmers!When a fourth bundle came out of the box, it felt suspiciously hard, unlike something homemade. I was right; Adrienne "cheated" on the homemade part and included this gift pack of Cedar Mountain products because I had said I like the smell of cedar.
On the back of this beautiful Border Collie postcard, Adrienne told me that the scarf and wristwarmers were knit from Fiesta Boomerang yarn (the Alaska colorway) in the Irish Hiking Scarf pattern, and the brown wristwarmers were made from her very first handspun. Knowing how I feel about MY first handspun yarn, I was even more deeply touched by her gift.

My Mary Engelbreit calendar page for February 13 contained the following quote from Barbara De Angelis: "Love and kindness are never wasted. They always make a difference. They bless the one who receives them, and they bless you, the giver." I have experienced both ends of this truth, most recently through the Pay It Forward homemade gift exchanges. Thank-you, Adrienne, for giving me the chance to get involved!

That's it for now from . . .


Kathy said...

What a nice post, Michelle! I have been looking at patterns for wrist warmers and these are inspirational. I have a pair of fingerless gloves that I wear around the house, but days when fingers swell they are tight. I noticed these wrist warmers on "Knitty Gritty" on TV long ago, so the idea has stuck.
And, oh, my...cedar and balsam! That sounds like a lovely scent to me too. I hope the sheep don't try to nibble on you! :)

Kathy said...

I also wanted to say "Congratulations" on your having your scratchboard art now up for sale. Way to go, Chica!

Tina T-P said...

How nice to have all that storage up and away from little paws. Your new wrist warmers are nice - sometimes my hands get cold when I'm sitting and reading - what a good idea :-) T.

Tammy said...

Love the cabinets Michelle - very nice! I know what it's like to wait, I'm slowly finishing off the kitchen here - piece by piece.
Love the wrist warmers and scarf as well. I'm going to have to learn how to knit one of these days. And that colourway is gorgeous.

A :-) said...

Oh Yay!! I'm so glad they fit as they should, and that you like everything. :-) Love the new cabinets - I'm sure you're very happy to have them.

Texan Will Travel said...

Hey, the cabinets are beautiful! Yea for cabinets!!! :)

(PS - ducking and running isn't necessary, big sis :P)