Sep 27, 2007

ECF - Comfort Edition

Isn't this sweet?


I didn't post yesterday because my daughter is still sick. I don't have any idea what's causing it yet and after spending the evening in the ER while she received IV fluids to rehydrate her I had very little to say that was positive. Sob stories aren't cool so I was quiet.

Today, when DQ went to pick up Stinkerbelle's homework she found these instead. The kids in her class and her after school program all made cards for her. Inside they wrote some really sweet things. DQ says that everywhere she goes in school, teachers and kids stop her to ask about Stinky. That makes things a little better.

I hope that tomorrow brings some answers and, more importantly, some relief for my sweet little girl.

Sep 25, 2007

Tilia Croaks

IMG_1843This is Tilia. I started this sweater quite a while ago and I loved it but... I've always had misgivings. I saw the yarn a year ago and I instantly loved it. I felt the pull of this yarn so hard and I just had to have it. The color is wonderful but the feel of it is divine. It's fabulous yarn.

I got one of the design books, The Enchanted Garden, because it had such lovely designs. I envisioned myself happily wearing Tilia but deep down I knew it wasn't right for me. The interest is all at the waist and ... ahem... I have none. The measurements, which I studied at length, didn't offer much hope either. If I made the sweater as written it wouldn't have offered a lot of room for error. The chances that it would work for me were so slim but I bought the yarn and started to knit anyway. I'd like to think it was optimism but, in reality, it was probably denial and stubbornness.

IMG_1847This is Tilia now. A few months ago I read a post on Mim's blog and it started me thinking seriosly about the knitty reality of knitting Tilia - a sweater that was more than just unlikely to fit me. Mim may have more hips than the model in the book but I have both hips and ass - neither of which the model possess'. Oh the denial!

I watched Mim work through her Tilia issues with a sinking feeling. She added gussets and wound up with a lovely, wearable sweater. I am mathematically challenged. Knitty math is way beyond me. The more I thought about Tilia the more I knew what I had to do. I finally gave in tonight and frogged Tilia. Even if I had added gussets there's no guarantee that she would've fit well or flattered my ample figure. It's for the best. I think that I've already chosen another pattern for this lovely yarn but that's for another day.

Stinky is still throwing up, even though she hasn't eaten solid food since Sunday, so tomorrow morning I'll take her back to the doctor. They want to do a few super-gross tests. Monday, when hubbo stayed home with her, she was really feverish and slept most of the day. Today she was still miserable but awake which led to a lovely day with Miss Whiny & Demanding. That's so not fair! Even less fair is that tomorrow night, Hubbo is going to an MLS soccer game with a friend. I'll be on duty all day AND all night. So not fair!

Sick Kid

IMG_1822There aren't too many things worse than having a sick kid. Today I'm home with Stinkerbelle who's got one hell of a nasty virus. She is miserable and it's awful not to be able to do too much to make it better. Today I'm hoping that at some point she'll feel well enough to play Legos or do crafty stuff. Right now all she wants to do is sleep.
At least I'll have a bit of knitting time maybe. Lately my constant knitting exercise is mostly contemplative. I have been knitting on my Clapotis and churning out a steady stream of dish cloths (at left) but all the while I'm thinking about the stuff that's not finished yet. I've got multiple scarves and socks and sweaters that are still in the UFO pile. Some of the stuff is for other people and that stuff will mostly get finished soon - hopefully giftably soon. The rest of it may be headed for the frog pond. Making a few decisions on that may be my job for today.

Sep 23, 2007


Whew! I am so relieved that this weekend is over. I have accepted that I have a problem. I am a bake-a-holic. When i get started I just can't stop. The picture below is evidence.


Do you see the abundance of food? This is what things looked like after everyone ate. Leftovers! I made a spinach quiche, egg salad, tuna sald, 2 blintz souffles and 3 cakes! I only really planned to make the Brownie Cheesecake but then I thought that another simple cake - a chocolate bread - might be nice too. Suddenly, it occurred to me that all the desserts were chocolate so, at the very last minute, I whipped up a lemon cake just for good measure. I really don't know what I was thinking. If you look carefully at the picture, you can see that neither the chocolate bread or the lemon cake was cut into. It's a shame too because they were really yummy. The Brownie Cheesecake was another story altogether. I have to say, that thing is a real crowd pleaser. It went fast.

Sep 20, 2007

ECF preempted by the Harlot

We saw the Harlot last night and she was wonderful!
IMG_1806See this crowd? This is only a small part of it. During the Harlot's presentation my friend Felicia's daughter Brooklyn got a little fussy so they got up to walk around a bit. She said that, as she walked around the store she saw people everywhere who had stopped what they were doing to listen. She really knows how to draw a crowd. Thankfully I got there early so we had decent seats.

IMG_1805With a crowd that large it was inevitable that I'd find someone I'd recognize and I did. I finally met Mama-E in person. I'm sure that there were a lot of other people there who I "knew" but I'm really not good about introducing myself unless I feel really comfortable. Maybe I'm just a bit shy in big groups. Mama-E was really cool though and I hope that I'll see her at other knitty events in the area.
The Harlot started speaking right on time at 7:30 and spoke for much longer than we expected. That was such a nice surprise. She was great! She's funny really entertaining. Everyone was laughing and nodding in agreement throughout. It was so worth going and I'm so glad that we were able to attend.
IMG_1817Look who got a little quality time with Stephanie. It's Brooklyn! (I think that the Harlot has a better picture of her. Watch for it.) We didn't initially plan to take her with us but then we realized that back to school night for DQ was the same night so My DH needed to go to that and couldn't watch the baby. Too bad for him because he was looking forward to playing with her. It was totally lucky for us that we did bring her because, as someone mentioned in the comments the other day, babies go first for the book signing. Woo Hoo! Three cheers for the littlest line jumper.

Then it was my turn to get my books signed and DQ and I posed for a pitcture with Stephanie and the sock. It was such a great night.


Have a great weekend everyone and, for anyone observing Yom Kippur I wish you an easy fast!

Sep 19, 2007

Scenes from a Ballgame

IMG_1784Having friends who are willing to share their season tickets to the Nationals is great but it's even better when the friends have pretty good seats. It's amazing how different things look when you're closer to the field. This was the view as we settled in earlier this evening.
The weather was perfect - not to hot and not to cool and, most importantly in DC - not too humid. Hubbo, the girls and I got there nice and early. We looked around RFK Stadium which will host only 4 more major league baseball games and we giggled at the rookie players walking on the field carrying pink backpacks and luchboxes. Aaahhh... hazing lives!
IMG_1796Having good seats means that you get to take some nifty pictures like this. That's Ryan Zimmerman trying to get something going for the home team. Alas, nothing doing tonight. I think it's a curse. The past 2 nights, the Nats have played against the Mets and won. Tonight we were there and the Nats lost. Hubbo was disappointed but my grandfather will be happy. He's a Mets fan. Hubbo called him from the game to tell him how much fun we were having and interrupted his poker game. Oooops!
IMG_1800Recognize these guys? At every home game Teddy, Abe, George and Thomas (as in Roosevelt, Lincoln, Washington & Jefferson) race through the city (on video) and then appear in person to continue the race across the field. From what I've heard, Teddy never wins. Could it be fixed?
IMG_1794The game was good even though the Nats lost. I was even able to get a little work done on my socks. You can be sure I'll have them with me tomorrow when I go see the Harlot. My friend Felicia and I are going. We'll be chaperoned by my darling DQ and Felicia's sweet little baby. I hope I see you there!

Sep 18, 2007

Randomness and more peeks

IMG_1781Carol asked for more peeks and you know me - I aim to please, so here are a few more shots of bathroom number 2 as it nears completion. As you can see there was a whole lot of grouting going on in there today. There's still a fine haze covering everything. It's ok though. It's all in the name of progress.
I tell you what, if it weren't for the bathroom reno I'd have precious little to write about. Although... there's always tv. Have you seen much lately. Aside from old movie night there hasn't been much worth watching. Just in case your wondering this past weekend we watched Father Goose with Cary Grant and Leslie Caron. It was another wartime movie and the family and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Cary Grant is coerced into becoming a coast watcher on an isolated island somewhere for the Allies during WWII. Leslie Caron plays a French teacher who winds up joining him along with her students - 7 young girls. It's a romantic comedy - need I say more? Anyway, apparently Old Movie Night is making an impression because tonight at back to school night I saw that she mentioned it in her "All About Me" booklet. Awwwww. I instantly turned into a mommy puddle.
IMG_1780I had a little deja vu when watching the Emmy's the other night because Leslie Caron was a presenter and a winner for a guest role on Law & Order SVU. You don't see here around all that much.
Speaking of the Emmy's, what are the chances that they'll ever get them right? I think that the censorship was a bit excessive and not very well done. The dead air thing - they might want to rethink that. We're all used to the bleeps but the way they did it just left us hanging. Or was that just me?
Another thing about the Emmy's that irritate me is the extraordinary number of awards for miniseries and tv movies etc. I get that there is a lot of work that goes into those things but it seems like an inordinate amount of this overlong production is spent honoring them. Just sayin'.
On the other hand there is Design Star. I really enjoyed this show but I worried about the outcome. I liked Todd and the rooms he did were fun but I really felt that Kim should win. Todd is a really high energy guy and his rooms reflect that both in the inventiveness and the bright colors but I think that watching a show built around him would make me tired. For a girl with no formal training I thought that Kim had some good instincts that seem to get better over time. I'm sure that by the time she hits the screen next Spring she'll be much more polished and just wonderful. Again, just my opinion - you're entitled to yours.
IMG_1778 In the true spirit of randomness why not switch gears totally and discuss this cute little purse I bought at the craft fair recently. I love the movement in the pattern on the front. It's weird but lately I'm really drawn to the warm golds and browns. The most notable thing about this bag is it's size. It's way smaller than the 2 ton bricks I usually carry. The adjustment to such a small bag is huge (and I'm constantly afraid that I'm forgetting important stuff at home) but so far so good.

Sep 17, 2007

Gettin' It Done

Don't you just love when stuff starts to come together.IMG_1770 Today I came home to huge progress on our second bathroom. So huge that I'm feeling really confident about it being mostly done by this weekend. This is a really good thing because I took a leap of faith and invited a whole lotta people to come over and break the fast on Saturday.
I am thrilled with the way the first bathroom came out but this one is even more personal because there were more elements to choose and I flexed my creative chops just a bit more. Watching everything come together has me so excited that I just had to share a tiny sneak peek.
Anyway, back to the company. Last week I was concerned with having enough guests to justify cooking a turkey and this week I'm looking forward to a house full of friends. How many? Ummm... I think we're gonna order 4 dozen bagels to feed all of us. As long as it's sunny it will be a fabulous day.
IMG_1776All my friends know that I love to entertain so not being able to throw BBQ's and other gatherings for the duration of the construction has been so hard. I am barely contained with excitement about this weekend. Of course getting there is half the fun. I can't cook Friday night because we'll be observing the start of Yom Kippur. Thursday night I MUST go see the Harlot so there'll be no cooking till I get home - maybe. Wednesday we're going to a Nationals game. Friends of ours have season tickets and they gave them to my DH as a birthday gift. Doesn't that mean we have to go? Tuesday night is meet the teacher night for Stinkerbelles class. This means that the trick will be to clean the house and do all the cooking between now and Saturday afternoon without blowing off any of the other stuff. Hmmm... what are the odds that something gets forgotten.

Sep 16, 2007

Mmmm .... cheesecake!

Thank you all so much for the kind holiday and birthday wishes. I hope that you all had a wonderful weekend. Hubbo had a nice but quiet birthday. I was not 100% and that put a bit of a damper on things. Nothing gross - just painful and miserable. Thankfully I'm feeling a lot better now.
So often we are told by our fellow bloggers about how much they get from blogland. We get advice, we get patterns, we get companionship and support. Rarely is there such yummy evidence. A while ago a bloggy buddy told me that one of her favorite daily reads is Smitten Kitchen so, I had to check it out. Don't click over if you're reading this before lunch because that blog will make you really hungry. She posts all manner of musings about food with gorgeous photography. I lot of it is really tempting but I just don't have the opportunity to try everything. One recent post called out to me. Screamed is more like it. In it she described a the cake that she made for her husband's recent birthday. It had my dh's name written all over it.
Do you see this cake? It's a cheesecake. With BROWNIES in it... and chocolate ganache on top! Yum! It didn't last long but until it was gone the family ate it morning noon and night. It was one of the yummiest cheesecakes ever.

Sep 12, 2007


IMG_1756Last night the sky was such a wild shade of pink. Sadly my camera had some issues capturing it but I came up with an alternative method. I think it worked out pretty well.
The big news today is that it's my dh's 40th birthday. He is officially an old man now. Hahaha! (Of course when I get to 40 it will no longer be old.) Bruce is a big old dork but he's my dork and he amuses my girls and I very much. He's also really good at doing tall things (like reaching the stuff he put in places I can't reach).
Seriously, Bruce takes care of the girls and I very well. He would love it if one of us would show interest in a sport (any sport) one day but, in the meanwhile, he has learned to live in a house surrounded by chicks pretty well. He talks fiber speak with me and indulges my obsession cheerfully. He tries really hard not to freak out when DQ starts talking about boys and girly stuff. He plays Legos and chess with Stinkerbelle.
He's a really good sport and we love him for it. Happy Birthday Bru!


I'll be busy celebrating the Jewish New Year which starts tonight for the rest of the week. I hope that you all have a great weekend!

L'shanah tovah!

Sep 11, 2007

The Fun Part

Just when you thought I'd given up and retreated to the land of dish cloths - the Clapotis returns! In reality I've been working on it in brief spurts for a while but now I feel the urge to finish it fast.Clapotis - the fun starts
Maybe it's because I've finally reached the fun part. I dropped my first stitches. Yay! Until this point it's been all knit and purl with regular knit through the back loops and yarn-overs for interest. Fun huh? Maybe that's why I've been fantasizing about sweaters and lace as I work on it. I think that the joy of working with this wonderful yarn I would be hopelessly bored by this project. But the yarn is truly fab and I love it dearly so I slog on.
I had initially hoped to wear this during the High Holidays but.... predictably they've crept up on me again. You'd think that after all this time I'd see them coming but no. I am hopeless. On the positive side, my Seraphim, which I'd hoped to wear for the High Holidays last year is ready for this year. That's something isn't it? I'd say that means that my Clapotis will be ready in time for next year.
Anyway, I'm feeling super sluglike. Last weekend I was shopping with DQ and it occurred to me to get a turkey for the holiday. I had already put chicken soup and matzoh balls and other holiday stuff in my shopping cart. A turkey seemed to be in order.
I turned to DQ and asked what she thought about having a turkey for the holiday dinner. She said that it seemed wrong to have a turkey with out company. Yes, that's very true. A turkey really needs a crowd to feel right.
That night I asked hubbo what he thought about the turkey and guests thing. Bearing in mind of course that my house is still short one bathroom and rather a mess. He agreed that we ought to invite a few friends and threw out suggestions. It just all felt like too much to consider right at that moment so I told him I'd have to think on it and get back to him. I am nothing if not sluglike right now.
There's another thing that's snuck up on me. The Harlot is going to be here in Virginia next week! Ack! I need to plan the logistics. I know that some of you have been lucky enough to see her - tell me, how early should we get there? One hour, two hours... should we camp out overnight? Help!

Sep 9, 2007

Shop, shop, shop

IMG_1743This weekend didn't turn out exactly the way I planned but it was pretty good anyway. We spent most of our time shopping and not so much time playing. The good news is that we got a lot done. We got a bunch of stuff for the bathroom-in-progress including a trip to an antique store that was a lot closer to Charlottesville than we remembered. We'd seen it during our recent vacation and been kicking ourselves ever since for not buying certain items. Thankfully they were still there.
Saturday also included a stop at one of our favorite craft shows. We found some stuff that we needed/wanted and Stinkerbelle became a part of the entertainment again. This time she was a knight - see her in the middle of a throng of fellow knights? We always enjoy going to crafts fairs but this time it was a little sad. It was a super hot day and it seemed like there were not nearly as many people there. There even seemed to be fewer vendors. Hubbo was talking to a vendor we know who was saying the craft fairs are falling on hard times lately. I think that's really unfortunate because we really enjoy them.
IMG_1744It wasn't all bad news at the fair. I saw a new vendor who fascinated me. Hover Montes is a weaver from Peru and this is some of his work. We really wanted to take one of these fabulous tapestries home but we just didn't know where we'd put it. He had his loom set up in the booth and you could watch him work. He has wool in different colors that he places piece by piece as he creates the design. Believe me, this stuff is just gorgeous up close.
We were out all day on Saturday and we finally got home with just enough time for Old Movie night as Saturday evenings have become known in our house. A week ago we watched Kiss Them For Me which was a Cary Grant movie but not a very good one. It was a wartime flick about a group of servicemen trying to enjoy leave in San Francisco. It just wasn't much fun.
IMG_1745The movie we watched this week was much better. Mr. Lucky is another wartime movie but much more lighthearted which makes it perfect for Old Movie Night. In it Cary Grant is trying to scam money out of the War Relief group by charming all of the women running the operation. It's predictable but fun anyway. In case you haven't seen it, knitting plays a small role and that part made us all laugh although not even the sight of Cary Grant with needles could tempt my DH to pick them up. Another amusing part were the scenes where Joe and Dorothy drive to Maryland and back. Hubbo commented that it was weird to see them make the whole trip without any tolls but of course the movie predates the Jersey Turnpike. Ha!

Sep 7, 2007

ECF - Rose Edition


Do I even need to say where I took this picture?

Have a great weekend. I plan to read a lot, knit more and maybe I'll get to play with Charlotte a little bit. Remember poor Charlotte, my long neglected wheel? The construction around the house is coming to a close so maybe it's safe to bring the fiber out again. I hope so.

Sep 6, 2007

Startitis Again

What is it about finishing a big (or lingering) project that makes you want to cast on for everything under the sun? Is it just me?Knittin' 004 Since I finished the blankie, I've started a Dream Swatch and made 2 washcloths.
The Dream Swatch was something I had wanted to make for quite a while. When I was in Blacksburg I saw one all knit up in Twize, a 100% bamboo yarn. The yarn feels wonderful and looks great - it's sinfully soft. The color I'm using is the same one they used for the sample at the shop but somehow I'm not loving how this is working out. Isn't that just the weirdest thing?
Knittin' 007The washcloths are another story alltogether. Last summer, when we bought the yarn for the blankie, I had no idea how much I'd need. It was the kind of thing where you cast on and see where it takes you. (I can't be the only one who does that) Lack of planning and an extreme fear of running out of yarn led me to buy 3 balls of each color. Yes, 3 of each of the 10 colors. I only used one of most colors and there are bits lest over from all of them.
Operating under the influence of fresh, home grown, garden veggies I decided that our house needs to phase out the use of paper towels. I'm thinking that if, over the course of the next year or so I churn out a cloth or 2 each week, we'd have quite the collection and I could whittle away the ridiculous stash of Sugar & Cream. Even as I write this I know it's probably a crazy idea but I'm gonna see how far it goes. What can it hurt? There are an amazing number of patterns out there to try and... they're washcloths. If one turns out ugly, who cares? It'll still be good for cleaning up spills. Two cloths down and a whole stash to go!

Sep 4, 2007

At Long Last... A Blankie!

Look! It's Stinkerbelle's blankie.


IMG_1736I really thought I'd finish this much sooner. When I started this blankie in July 2006 I assumed that it would be a relatively quick project. I'm sure it would've been done long ago if it hadn't spent so long in time out. It wasn't a bad project. It just wasn't exciting. My sweet Stinkerbelle is also very patient so I wasn't feeling any pressure to finish it until recently when she casually commented that maybe it would be finished next year. Suddenly this sucker was in my lap all the time. I took it with me everywhere and spent every free moment working on it.

As this project drew to a close, I felt really pleased with it but it was a little raw. I also had some design decisions to make about how to finish the blankie off. I asked for a little advice and you all, unanimously, confirmed my instinct to wrap it up with a strip of the dark blue color and continue it around the edge. I could've done a simple crochet edge but I went for the applied i-cord. That i-cord took for-freakin'-ever to do but it was so worth it. With the i-cord, the edges look finished. Kay is right, it really does look like bias binding and enhances the look of the blanket more than words can express. I just wish it didn't take quite so long.
IMG_1728The edges aren't the only aspect of this blankie that is satisfying. The whole blankie was made with 100% cotton, Sugar & Cream yarn. It uses 10 different colors of yarn (9 of which were chosen by Stink-o) and I only used about 1 ball of each (except for the dark blue which needed 2). It wasn't the most fun stuff to knit with. Actually, I hated it at times but the end result is a blanket that feels really substantial - not heavy, just not light and feathery. If the feel of it is any indication, this blankie will wear really well which is a very imporatant featture for an item that gets dragged all around the house.
It's my hope that washing it will soften it up quite a bit. I'm not sure about that though because in order to prove or disprove that theory I'd have to pry it out of my darling Stinkerbelle's hands. That hasn't happened since the last end was woven in.
BTW, thanks to everyone who took the time to join me on my little trip down memory lane. There are some events in ones life that are so major that you just can't help but commemorate them in some way and telling the story is much more satisfying when there's someone there to listen. I would respond to each of you directly but Blogger doesn't make it easy at all. Thanks!

Sep 3, 2007

September 4, 1997

By September 4th my little family was feeling pretty good. Settled even. My grandparents had recently visited and during their stay we had made amazing progress in our unpacking. So much so that the previous weekend we had hauled the last boxes out to the trash. It was such a great feeling.
IMG_1731Not only were we unpacking our history, we were also moving forward. My DH was just days away from his 30th birthday and we'd bought a new grill for him to celebrate. There was a surprise party being planned too - back home in New York. Because I love to put stuff together, I had spent the preceeding weekend putting the grill together and a new bookcase too. It was great!
On September 4th, settling in and planning for the future were on my mind as I went out on my errands for the day. I interviewed a pediatrician and took the long way home. We were exploring.
When we finally arrived at home we got the surprise of our lives. There were cars everywhere that had been displaced by the fire trucks in front of... my apartment building! It was one of those times where you approach the scene of some horrible occurrence with (morbid) curiosity while feeling sure that it must be affecting someone else. It can't possibly be you and yet... this time it was.
IMG_1733A complete idiot living on the 3rd floor had enjoyed a cigarette on her balcony (seen at left) before putting it out in a paper bag and taking a nap. Predictably, the bag caught fire as did the whole building. Coincidentally, that family was the only one not present at the scene. Imagine that?Everyone else was gathered outside -watching in horror. Most of them had no insurance. Thankfully we did.
That insurance was a lifesaver because there was so much that we lost that day. The fire didn't touch our apartment on the first floor but the water certainly did. Most of our furniture was destroyed but there was some that was salvageable. Our pictures were all unscathed and, more importantly, we were all safe.
The building was in really bad shape and there was a fear that the ceilings would collapse so the fire department allowed me just one quick, escorted trip inside to grab stuff quick. I got some of the important stuff - DQ's blankie and some jewelry - but it was limited to what I could carry in one trip. I learned that you get a peculiar brain freeze at times like this. That's why I grabbed a basket of random dirty laundry rather than anything helpful and clean. That's also why I forgot my necklace (studded with diamonds from my grandmother's wedding band) that was laying in a fairly obvious place and was never seen again.
The stuff that you remember from a traumatic time can be weird. I remember staying in a hotel room supplied by the Red Cross that night and wishing for my PJ's - anything to sleep in except for the clothes I was wearing that day. At the very least I wanted fresh underwear. Ewww! I recall going to the rental office a day or 2 after the fire and finding tons of flowers. They were from memorials left at the British Embassy as a memorial to Princess Diana and the Red Cross was redistributing them to folks like us, who needed a little cheer. I loved those flowers.
Remember the party in NY that I mentioned? I remember that too. Specifically, I recall talking on the phone with family in NY who were asking me to make decisions about the party - decorations, catering, etc. - as if I had nothing else to do but plan parties long distance as I took up residence again in the hotel and began dealing with insurance and other issues. I finally got so exasperated that I blew up in a fit of frustration and told hubbo to act surprised at the proper time.
Driving up to the party a week after the fire was bizarre because we were able to put all that we had in the car again but this time there was no assurance that we'd ever see the rest of our stuff. After the fire, anything that survived was boxed up and taken to a facility to be processed. Electronics were checked to see if they still worked. Anything fabric was dry cleaned and sent back eventually on hangers. This included all of the maternity clothes that had been boxed, outgrown baby clothes, every single napkin, every tie. Everything came back on it's own hanger.
Through much of the fall we waited for the stuff that could be saved to be returned to us and we moved 2 more times before settling in a new apartment. We lived for weeks with nothing in out living room but lawn chairs while we waited for delivery of the new furniture. Through it all I commuted back and forth to New York for a class I need for my MLS. Planes, trains and automobiles - oh my!
There was more that happened that fall and looking back it's amazing to think that we got through it all. It's not surprising though because the fire made us realize that we needed to connect with more people in our new home. We are not super religious by any stretch of the imagination but the day after the fire, we started going to the synagogue we still attend and many of the friends we've made there have become like family to us. A decade later I can say with certainty that with good friends you can get through anything! I'm not being Pollyanna when I say that, while we lost some stuff, we gained much more. In the end, the fire changed a lot for us and most of it was for the best.

This concludes my trip down memory lane. Thanks for allowing me to share and, to all those like me with kids returning to school today - hooray!