Friday, November 28, 2008

The day after

We had a nice Thanksgiving Day feast with friends and family yesterday. Dad and Hilda and Jim and Jennifer came over for dinner. We had ham, turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, dressing, biscuits and green beans. And some yummy wine and sparkling wine.
For dessert Jacob and Aileen and Angie and Joe joined us. We had my homemade pumpkin pie, which I have to say turned out pretty well, chocolate pie, blackberry pie and chocolate pecan pie. Yum!
It was a nice day and evening. It was a good time.
For some reason I am really tired this morning. I think I got too much sleep. I am trying to convince myself to get dressed and go to the gym and hit Michaels with my coupon. I wonder if it is less crazy now?
As you all start your shopping for the season think about buying an extra pack of Christmas/holiday cards to send to a recovering soldier.
The following information was provided to me by The Ships Project:

Holiday cards for Recovering American Soldiers should be mailed to:

Holiday Mail for Heroes
P.O. Box 5456
Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456

All cards must be postmarked no later than Dec. 10. Cards should not
be mailed or delivered to Walter Reed Army Medical Center (WRAMC). If you receive a message (usually via email) that WRAMC will accept cards and letters address to "any soldier" or "any recovering warrior" (or some variation on that theme), DON'T BELIEVE IT! Mail that arrives at Walter Reed without the NAME of a specific patient is discarded.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thankgiving everyone! (That pumpkin in my hand is really the only pumpkin that grew in our garden this year.)
I am truly thankful for so much. I am thankful for family: my family, Curt's family and friends who are family.
I am thankful for my life. I feel very lucky in my life right now. I have a fulfilling life: my husband; my family; my friends; Joey (fur baby); the ability to travel and see the world; I am healthy and in just about the best shape of my life; I live in a great place--I mean, it doesn't get much better than the Bay Area (minus the crappy weather and earthquakes); I have a good job, a good boss, good co-workers: for all of this I am thankful.
I hope everyone has a wonderful day and weekend. And as we gear up for Christmas let's try to remember what this day is really about. Not greed, or spending tons of money, but about family, loved ones and maybe remembering those who are not as fortunate as we are.
I have been taking my craft of knitting toward more charity. You all know I knitted 20 military beanies and recruited others to make some, too. Along with sending some "extras."
Well, Penny got me involved in another charity project, a scarf project. I knitted three scarves, which I will be sending off soon along with some Target gift cards and Starbucks gift cards.
I feel lucky and fortunate that I have the time and money to help others out who need a little boost.
I am a big advocate of volunteer work and helping others out. Since I have lived in California (almost four years) I have not been volunteering and I hate that. So maybe that will be a good New Year's resolution.

Here are the three scarves I made and will be sending off soon--that is before the December 15 deadline.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

4, 2, 2 & $1.99

My work weeks the past few weeks have been short.
Week of Nov. 10: 4 days and off to Missouri
Week of Nov. 17: 2 days, back from Missouri and off to New Orleans
Week of Nov. 24: 2 days, back from New Orleans and then Thanksgiving break

But I think I partly made up for it by working about 11 1/2 hours yesterday. I am hoping to sneak out a little early today.

Oh, and gas is now $1.99 near our house. Woot-woot!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Back at work

Meant to post yesterday. But between coming home tired, going grocery shopping--which was nuts at 3 in the afternoon, doing laundry, unpacking, going through mail, paying bills, etc. I just didn't post.
But I am back and back at work for two full days.
I will definitely post all the details of my fun weekend. And pics, too.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Winding up in New Orleans

I will give the full report when I return home.
But for now I will let you know that I have eaten a lot of good food; gone on two tours: ghost tour and cemetery tour; done some shopping; walked a lot; talked to some locals about their history and Katrina; gone on a couple of adventures with Sue; eaten my share of beignets. It has been a good trip.
Oh, and sitting in First Class rocks! The seats are so much bigger and roomier, you get free food and drinks. It is so nice!!!
Tomorrow our flight is at 7:30. Ugh! Sue just called for our 5 a.m. wake-up call.
Good night!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Check out these magazines

I couldn't get this pic up last night. But I was able to get it up now.
Sue and I saw these at a newstand at the San Jose airport. They cracked us up.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Made it to New Orleans

After a long day of travel Sue and I have arrived in New Orleans. We flew out of San Jose into Atlanta, had a two-hour layover in Atlanta and then off to N'awlins.
We are staying in a nice area at a nice hotel. We walked to Cafe Du Monde tonight for beignets and hot chocolate. Yummy!
Oh, and when we checked into our hotel we each got a warm chocolate chip cookie.
We are ready to wind down and get some sleep. Both of our beds have pillows that say Sweet Dreams.
Good night!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Cute story

I have been so busy at work I haven't had time to update. Not that there has been much to write about except that work has been nutso busy and I came home last night and tonight exhausted. I guess that is what I get for only working two days this week.
Off to New Orleans with my friend Sue tomorrow. I should have a few updates while there. So check back.

Now on to the cute story ...

So remember when I blogged a while back about how I made a beanie for my nephew Jackson with glow-in-the-dark stripes? Well, he brought it with him to Missouri. I was surprised at how well it fit him. It was a little big--but he can roll up the rim if he wants. So he was excited to hold it up to the light and then run to the bathroom to see it glow. He even had Heather (who is a good family friend) run into the bathroom with him at some point to see the hat glow.
Then Craig (his dad) told me that he lights it up and runs to the basement bathroom very often to look at his hat.
It made me feel good that he liked his gift so much. It makes all the time it took to knit and weave the ends in totally worth it.

Monday, November 17, 2008

We're baaaack!

Got back from Missouri tonight. Our flight was actually about a half an hour early. Southwest gets more and more awesome. Curt and I fly them pretty regularly and have had no major issues with them.
So we got into Kansas City on Friday night a little after 7 p.m. Ed picked us up and we headed to Albany. We arrived in Albany a little after 9 p.m. And Marilyn had dinner waiting for us. So nice.
Saturday morning Curt and Craig headed out to the farm early to hunt.
About 7 a.m. I heard a little person coming down the stairs to the basement, where Curt and I slept. I look up and I see a little head and Jackson (who is 6) say, Aunt Ann? I tell him to come on over and I will turn a light on so he can see. Jackson tells me, I can turn a light on and proceeds to turn on the brightest lights in the room. :)
Soon after James came down and the three of us were chatting and hanging out. Eventually we headed upstairs for breakfast.
Jackson wanted to learn to knit and brought his own yarn. He was super awesome at casting on. The knitting part was a little hard for him. James also wanted to learn and is so patient and amazing at things like that. He learned to knit! James is almost 9.
Marilyn and I did some work on scarves for the scarf project. I finished one full one and half of another--because I ran out of yarn (gotta go buy more for that particular scarf--I thought I had enough). I also finished Christmas Present No. 6 on the plane tonight.
Grandma Phyllis came over to visit part of the day, too.
Our friends Scott and Jennie came by with their two boys for a visit.
Later on James went out with Curt and Craig to hunt.
Sunday morning Curt, Craig and James went out early to hunt.
Then at noon we had our Thanksgiving feast with the Humphreys. It was a great meal with great company.
After that, since all the Poff men were in town they all went to get their picture taken.
Then Curt, James and Craig went back out to the farm. Curt got a doe. So there will be venison jerky!!! Hey, I don't want to shoot it or see it dead, but I will gladly eat the jerky.
Sunday evening Curt, Craig, the boys and I headed to Grandma Phyllis' for a visit. We had a nice visit. I stayed and spent the night. It was a nice visit with her and just the two of us girls hanging out.
Went back to Ed and Marilyn's this morning. Then we all went out to the farm for the induction ceremony for the boys into the Poff family deer hunting hall of fame. James was awarded for going out hunting many times and never complaining that he was cold. He really was a good sport. (Cuz I barely spent time outside--even when the sun was out.) And Jackson was awarded for coming along with his brother and for being the best caster oner.
After that we headed back to the house for lunch and to get our bags ready. Our flights were pretty much the same time. So we drove to the airport in two cars. Dropped Craig and the boys off first. Then Curt and me.
I am not too tired. But I have some stuff I must tend to. And then Thursday I head to New Orleans with my friend Sue.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Warm weekend

So the weather is supposed to be really nice this weekend. But I will be in Missouri freezing my you-know-what off!
Curt and I are heading to Albany today to visit family and for deer season. Curt's brother, Craig, and his two boys, James & Jackson, are also visiting this weekend.
It should be fun and crazy.
Sunday we are having an early family Thanksgiving feast. And since all the Poff men will be together a professional picture taken of them out on the farm.
Us girls will do some knitting and maybe some shopping. I plan to have a relaxing weekend inside.
We are going to work on this scarf project over the weekend. (Oh yea, finished Christmas Project No. 5 last night. Just four to go. And one I think I can get done on the plane.)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Cool stuff

Today I filled up the car for $2.37 a gallon. I don't remember the last time we were below 3 bucks a gallon. I thought for sure after the election prices would be back in the $4 range. But the price keeps dropping.

OMG!!!! This is so cool. I was randomly looking at blogs yesterday. One was a knitter's blog. And she talked about Stitchminder application for the iPhone. You can count your rows, pattern rows, etc. on your phone. I have a little clicker counter Leah gave me that I use a lot and love. The Stitchminder application is free. Since getting the second-generation iPhone I hadn't looked at many applications or installed any. Now I have Stitchminder and a translator. Both free!
Pinball party
Our friend Jason is having a birthday. His wife, Bernadette, is hosting a party for him tonight at Lucky Ju Ju. We will have three hours of 36 Vintage/Modern Pinball and Amusement Machines on Free Play and 3 Rooms with Jukeboxes all on Free Play.
Sounds pretty cool, huh?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

OMG! So cute!

Hee hee! Isn't this soooo cute???? Jennifer e-mailed this to me today. Thanks for the smile in a crazy work day Jennifer.

Monday, November 10, 2008

4 down, 5 to go

So I finished Christmas project No. 4 yesterday and started on No. 5. I just can't seem to sit and watch TV unless I am knitting. No. 4 was the biggest project. So I am happy it is complete.

Visit with Jen & Dave

Had a low-key weekend. Did knitting, movie watching and relaxing.
Jen and Dave flew in yesterday evening into Oakland. They have a nice and relaxing and wine drinking few days planned.
I was happy they could fit us in for dinner.
They got to our place about 5:30. We chatted a bit and then headed out to dinner. We asked them what their preference. Jen picked sushi.
So we headed to Sushiya. We walk in and receive the same wonderful and cheery welcome we always receive. I ask, anymore of that free sake? Then we tell the owner (I need to ask him his name) that Dave worked on the Obama campaign in Arizona. So we got free sake. I always seem to get free things because of Dave. :)
We had a delicious dinner and a fun time. After dinner headed back to our place for a bit. Dave is in love with our TV.

Friday, November 07, 2008

My blog is a little bit famous

Ann Chihak Poff is being featured on Five Star Friday today. Click here to see.
From Five Star Friday: What Is Five Star Friday? It is a weekly collection of links to superior weblog entries from varying categories that have been submitted by the people, for the people. Anyone can submit entries, so if you know of an excellent example, send me the link for the next edition of Five Star Friday.
Well, thank you to whoever submitted this post.
I plan on adding Five Star Friday to my list of blog links.

Thursday, November 06, 2008


I am going to New Orleans! I am so excited!
Last year one of the raffle prizes at the holiday party was two round-trip plane tickets. The co-worker who won them just couldn't use them. They are tricky: you call and say I want to go here on this date and they say yes or no. So you have to be flexible.
So she gave them to my friend Sue and said, if you can use them you can have them. So Sue comes over to me and asks me where I would want to go for a long weekend. (And the catch is the tickets expire on Thanksgiving.) I told Sue New Orleans. She ran to her desk to call. Between the two of us only one weekend works in November. So she called and got that weekend. WHA!!!???
We checked with bosses and me with Curt and her with her sister to take care of her horses while she is gone. (I did tell Sue if she wanted to take the offer back and take her sister I was fine with that.)
So Sue calls the next day to book and the tickets are no longer available. DANG!!!!
She does some fancy work and finds out we can fly out a day earlier from San Jose and come back the same day we had planned. Sue put a hold on the tickets.
We did some hotel research. Man, hotels aren't too costly in New Orleans.
Oh, and guess what? The tickets are first class baby!!!! I have NEVER flown first class.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Viva Obama!!!!

I am having embedding issues. So click here for a fun video.

I am so happy Obama won. This is an amazing time in our life for so many reasons.
I am sad that Proposition 8 here in California is nearing victory. Denying someone basic human and civil rights is the true axis of evil. Prop. 8 is plain and simple discrimination and I am disgusted that people think it is OK to deny rights to someone because they are different.
I am pleased to see that Proposition 4 is failing. A synopsis: An initiative that requires a waiting period and parental notification before a minor could terminate her pregnancy was failing with half of ballots counted Tuesday. California voters had twice before rejected similar measures.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Free Sake!!!!

Well, apparently my blue scarf worked today. Curt and I are hanging out with Phil and Lisa at their place. We are drinking beer and had barbecue. We are celebrating that Obama is going to be our new president on January 20, 2009. 
This is so exciting!!!! It is only a little after 8 p.m. and we already know that Obama is going to be our next president.

Tomorrow Curt and I will heading to Sushiya for free sake and some sushi tomorrow night about 7 p.m. If you want to join us, please do.

What scarf to wear?

So this morning I was grabbing my coat and a scarf to wear. I have 3 handknit scarves I regularly wear: 2 I made, one dark red and one purple; and one Kate made me, blue. I grabbed the red one and then thought I should wear the blue one instead to show my liberal side today since I didn't get an I voted sticker.
I vote by mail so I don't get one. Bummer.

California's Proposition 8 ...

is against civil rights and human beings.
For those who want to bring the bible or religion into this issue, which is clearly about human equality rights, I give you this link from The West Wing:
I get chills every time I watch this.

If you haven't voted yet (Curt and I vote by mail) get out there today and vote!

Monday, November 03, 2008

I may not be patriotic ...

But I do care about people, and right now especially our troops.
Recently Mia was asking me why I chose to make beanies for the troops. Not questioning, but more out of curiosity.
I told her that it first started when I found this pattern and it got me thinking that that would be a good project to work on. I told her I am against the war and I care about people. And it angers me to know that the soldiers don't have basic items while fighting for our county--whether or not I support the war.
This is my way of letting them know that I appreciate what they are doing for us. And it is my way of saying thank you.
So I was able to recruit some people to help me make handmade items for our troops. Today I sent the packages off to The Ships Project, who will take the items and send them off to those who need them in the Middle East.
We sent 49 hats thanks to me, Penny, Alicia, Lauren, Leah, Mary and Barbara and her knitting group. We sent "extras": 100 ChapSticks, character bandages, coffee, Slim Jims and Crystal Light thanks to Todd. We sent $125 for postage donation, which The Ships Project will use to send the care packages on to our troops, thanks to me, Todd, Sue and Faye.
And I know there are others of you out there who have expressed wanting to participate. The Ships Project will start taking donations again in January. So get to knitting or crocheting those hats and other items.

LinkI had to take all the items out of their extra packaging to send on to The Ships Project. Any extra packaging or air in bags takes up precious space. You can see the bags I filled with coffee, Slim Jims, ChapStick, bandages and Crystal Light. And the bottom photo is the 49 hats that were handmade. It took me roughly 5 hours to do one. And I knitted 20. You do the math.
I was very excited to be part of this project. And it felt great packing everything up and sending it on its way today.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

I hate Daylight Saving Time ...

... ending and starting.
Yup, it is 6 a.m. on a Sunday and I am wide awake. I have actually been up for some time. I stayed in bed for some time hoping I would go back to sleep. And I went to bed much later than normal hoping to help me sleep in on the day we "fall back."

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Happy Nov. 1

We had friends over last night to hang out and hand out candy. My brother, John, and his girlfriend, Jessica, are in town this weekend for a comic book convention. So they hung with us, too.
It was a good night. Not a ton of trick or treaters. But it did start raining. Bummer. There were some cool costumes. One kid was the joker and handed out copies of the Joker card from a deck of cards. I thought that was cool. 
This morning I went to the gym and shortly I am heading to a cupcake/jewelry party. 
Then tonight we will pick up John and Jessica from the convention and head to Dad and Hilda's for dinner.

$2.95 ... $2.87

The price of gas keeps falling. Sweet!