Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Happy Birthday to Me
I turned forty-six today. It wasn't at all traumatic to me because I've been saying that I was forty-six most of this year. One day, one of Paige's friends said, "I thought you were the same age as my mom." Then it hit me that I was jumping the gun. I don't know what made me skip forty-five. Anyway, I'm fine with it, and I've already celebrated a little. Russ and I had planned to go pick up Paige and her friends from volleyball camp at Pepperdine University in Malibu yesterday. We had forgotten that Kai had an orthodontist appointment though. Rather than have his appointment postponed an entire month, we decided that Russ would take him and I would pick up the girls. I may not have mentioned it before, but I HATE driving in L.A., absolutely hate it. Then I got the idea to ask a knitting friend of mine to go with me and stop at Wildfiber in Santa Monica before we picked up the girls. We had no trouble finding it, and after driving around for five or ten minutes trying to find parking, we were in heaven. It was the best yarn store I've ever been to, and they were having a huge sale. My parents and my mother-in-law had just sent me money for my birthday, so I filled my new Wildfiber bag with six skeins of Jaeger Extra Fine Merino yarn on sale for 40% off. I'm planning to knit a pillow out of them, using Veronik Avery's Blear Claw Blanket pattern. It was originally published in Spring 2005 issue of IK, but I must have given that issue away because I couldn't find it anywhere. I also bought some Manos de Uruguay to make a felted bowl with. We really had a good time. I've read about yarn stores with "snooty" owners, etc., but Wildfiber has a really comfortable atmosphere, and they didn't even get irriated with my friend, Janet, and me when we had to touch some of the $45 a skein cashmere to our faces.
Pepperdine University is only about twenty minutes from Santa Monica, or it should be, traffic is always such an issue in Southern California. Paige and I read The Keeper of the Bees by Gene Stratton Porter a couple of years ago. Its setting was Santa Monica, just after World War I. It was a sweet book, and I especially loved the descriptions of the countryside. You can see why people were drawn to it, but there are so many people now, it's hard to enjoy the natural beauty there with building upon building everywhere. Of course, sometimes, it's the people that make it interesting too. We ate at Paradice Beach Cafe on the way home and had fun looking at the pictures of all of the movie stars from the forties through now who had eaten there.
I do love some of the Southern Californian beaches, but I'm happiest when we're places where the pace is slower, as it is still along much of the Central Coast. And I still think our vacations in Nebraska are perfect. My sister-in-law usually plans (with everyone's final approval) a great little "mini-vacation" in the middle of our visits to the Midwest. This year, we went to Mahoney State Park and Platte River State Park and stayed in cabins near the Plattie River. It was hot and muggy, but beatiful; and we had a great time.
The cabin at Mahoney had an increidble view of the Platte River nearby. .
The first morning, we woke up and saw wild turkeys just outside our window with a bunch of chicks. The kids weren't that impressed, but the adults were. We tried to go outside to get some pictures, but they disappeared into the brush.
Even though it was so hot, the kids went on paddle boats one afternoon too. It wasn't white water river rafting, but they seened to enjoy it for a while.