The Twific Saga

Prayer Shawl in Prairie
Prayer Shawl in Prairie

Miss April and I attended the TWIFIC Marketplace last night at the Hilton Suites Gold Coast – swanky!!

I was invited to participate with a handful of other ETSY vendors and we were the only there with accessories. There were a couple of jewelers and maybe eight vendors total in one of the smaller meeting rooms on the second floor.

About 200 people were there for the weekend in celebration of fiction writing and especially Twilight type fiction. I armed myself with my hats, hoodies and scarves and didn’t have a lot of room to put out a lot of stuff. But I came home with a lighter inventory load and a heavier wallet.

I didn’t make the $350 goal I would have like to make but as I thought, not all the attendees came to the marketplace. We might have seen about 100 folks and they were a fun and lively bunch. The entire marketplace was only two hours though they extended an extra hour to those who wanted the time. It took awhile but we were making sales pretty consistently that last hour. Miss April sold some things and I came with four hoodies but only one made it back home and my ready to ship inventory is lighter a few hats. I have no complaints at all about the sales that evening and I was still getting hits from folks who were there. I even got a sale after I was all packed up and someone came in looking for a hat and walked out with one of the gray cable berets. Icing. The only kind I really like.

Meanwhile, back in Knitsville, the basket weave shawl is about half done. I am on the second skein of yarn so I am hopeful I will not need to go into the third skein except to do the short fringe. I jumped up to a K hook and it’s still taking some time to get it done. In the office, the ribbed school scarf found itself on the needles and I am a the main color part of it  I would like to be finished with the shawl and have it in the mail on Monday. I can’t believe today is Sunday – doesn’t feel like it. I am hoping to get both the shawl and scarf done to be in the mail and then I can start on the golf club covers. I found yellow yarn in the bin and there should be enough to finish all three. They don’t require much.

I almost completed the inventory list and redistributed the inventory into the bags instead of the bin. Now the bin has the heads and wigs, price tags, etc. needed for the table. It works a lot better.  The list will be completed when I add those things I didn’t take to the show – like the snakes.

So, things are humming along. I am probably ready for another sale or two or four so I can close out the month with 600. That would be nice. That would be very nice. It’s still raining but there’s happiness dancing between the drops – stay cool, dry and safe over the rest of the weekend!

 

 

Rainy Days and Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays

granny square hat
granny square hat

Both the 75 week and Etsy pages have been updated.

There’s been rain galore in Knitsville. Haven’t been able to get out and take the photos I need to take. I do have some in the camera already but there are several things that need to be photographed and I would rather upload a bunch at once than do a little at a time. Right now there seems to be a brief break so I will be going down to photograph the basic crochet slouch, a celebrity knit hat and the wine colored (claret) hooded scarf.

There’s also no way of getting around I need to do the inventory list for the show. I am anticipating good things for Friday because it’s the only night of the week that there’s not supposed to be rain and because I’ve been putting up tweets with the hashtag of the convention and that resulted in more than 200 visits to the shop yesterday. 200 visits in a single day..a single day in June no less. I did get an order yesterday but since it was for golf club covers I’m thinking it’s not related.  So, I need to redo the inventory and the way I store it so I can have an efficient table Friday night. The marketplace is only two hours and there’s only 200 people so it needs to be good. I also don’t have signage for the shop so it has to get some attention. I think the colors will do that. Best not to over think. I alway get into trouble when I over think…maybe not trouble but I do get a headache.

Just a few more days to this month. I am just finished with week 7 of 75 of the get healthy thing. There has been definite progress and there are steps in place to kick things up. I am looking for the 90 days before vacation to be so intense I will need to get on a plane to Florida to chill out. I am hitting another plateau. I have to have a muscle and endurance breakthrough. It seems after every interval, I just want to fall asleep. That happened at the very beginning but then I broke through it and felt really good afterward. Now the sleep thing is back.  Along with a tiny bit of the soreness. Once I get the muscle breakthrough, I’m betting the fatigue goes away. Adding the walking interval next month should help. I will also start tracking numbers next month as well.

There’s much to do. Tonight is knit group and I would like to get the basket weave shawl done – had to start it over – it was too wide, way more than the 20 inches it should have been. It’s under control now but it’s moving somewhat slowly. I want to get that out because there are two other orders waiting.  I was tempted to start the scarf last night but I stopped myself. All I need is a WIP to start talking to me while I work on something else.  Knitsville doesn’t need anything new to talk about.

 

Knuts in Knitsville

pixie scarf
pixie scarf

Knitsville went nuts overnight as three orders came in. Word is there is still one more custom order waiting to be completed and when that happens, there just might be a panic in the streets. Note: that in Knitsville a ‘panic’ is someone standing in the middle of the street turning to the left and the right wondering which yarn store they should go to first. (“Go right, Martha, it’s closer.” “No, go left, Martha, they’re having a sale!)  See, pandemonium in the heartland.

Someone ordered this but the color is no longer available from Hobby Lobby. They also ordered it custom to become a shawl and not a mere scarf. I did explain the color would be different and she was very agreeable to me finding a color ‘as close as possible’ to the original.  I will be taking a trip first through the yarn stash just to make sure I don’t have enough there – excuse me while I laugh myself silly. I have enough of everything to make a hat and not enough of anything to make a shawl – except homespun.  But it will be worth the look if for no other reason than finding the actual name of the color and confirming HB really no longer carries it. I also will forage through the other inventory bag to see if I still actually have the scarf. I’ve sold a number of basketweave scarves but none in the original color and I’m not sure if it was sold at a craft fair.

I f I have the actual scarf, I could take it with me to a store a lot closer than HB to see if I can match it up ‘as close as possible’ and fulfill my need without going all the way out there.

But that wasn’t the only thing that made Knitsville a little batty – while one of the orders was for the school spirit scarf and I actually pulled enough navy and white fiber to complete it, the third order was for one of the patterns. The patterns cost $3.50 so I was a little perplexed when the order came through at $6.90.  Had it been an even $7.00 – I would have said she did a double download but what’s up with the missing $.10? And when I wrote to her ask if she somehow did a double thing, she said no and that she couldn’t even download the pattern. I tried downloading it from her order and it appeared fine. So I am having the Etsians look at it. Because we in Knitsville believe in the power of reaching out to others – and because the problem seems to be in their village but affecting our village.

Not to mention, which I guess I am about to, there are two projects that are in the last stages. The knit hat is in decrease stage and almost done and the claret colored hood is on row 12 which means there are just 13 more rows total for it.

We did get out and got some photos done yesterday – including the KOPT hat – but there was thunder and rain and we didn’t stay out long. Today is a knit free day in Knitsville and it is a test of our resolve that we take the day off and not cast on the scarf.

Someone else invaded Knitsville and asked me if I would consider doing some freelance writing for them – specifically a newsletter – a newsletter for a publisher and I would have to research the content. That’s almost a deal breaker. Can you imagine what I would be like trying to do a newsletter if the shop is anywhere near as busy as it was last year? This needs prayer. So I am praying to be told what to do about it and I am putting it out of my mind to see if it comes back to me or not.

In the meantime, there’s enough in Knitsville to keep a girl out of the bar and that’s no small feat in Knitsville. The Blackhawks can win the Stanley Cup tonight so I will be watching the later part of the game to see how it goes. I will watch while trying not to knit. This could be dangerous.

Crack Crochet

classic newsboy
classic newsboy

Knitsville is all abuzz because the crochet hooks have taken over the town square. It seems as if there are two custom orders on the horizon and they are both crochet. There’s the red hood on the hook up here in the office. The project downstairs is a knit one but he has been somewhat overshadowed – though I have learned my lesson from the last time I neglected a knit project – not going to let that happen again.

Knitsville is also a little giddy because after Mr. H. returns from church, he will be taking his trustycorvette sports car – which looks something like the picture – and will be heading to a car show with some of his friends where they will sit in the sun and grunt and groan in that way that makes up male language.

That means I am free to workout (I didn’t do intervals yesterday) and vacuum the carpeting without getting a lecture on how vacuums work. He agreed last night the carpet should be replaced but resisted the hardwood floor route. He says the house is too echoy without the carpet.

I am hoping there is such a thing as sound absorbing flooring that I can hit him with. Carpet just seems like too much work compared to a hardwood floor.

Also, the day will be quite muggy but it looks good enough for photos so I will be headed out to the patio with the camera, the big box of inventory, some batteries, price tags and pens and have a go at it.

Friday is fast approaching and I want this craft show not to be a last minute rush that I am famous for. So, I am going to go and start the prep and hopefully get through a lot of what needs to be done! It’s going to be a busy and fun week in Knitsville and that’s just how the good citizens like it!

Ooo Baby, Baby

eyelet rasta
eyelet rasta

There is just TOO much happiness in Knitsville today.

Not only was the KOPT hat done and happy, but another hooded scarf was completed. OK, this is what the hooded scarf looks like. This was the hooded scarf, Carolyn who served on the jury with me, wanted and yesterday she purchased it and I made a fresh one for her – in one evening – and I started after 7pm.

hoodie in black
hoodie in black

Even knitometry is working well in Knitsville. Then late last night, I decided I wanted to make another basic crochet slouchy – because the one I talked about making after I came back from date night is done and there was more than enough yarn to finish it.

So, I pulled open a bin of yarn and found a one pound skein of claret colored yarn and picked up a hook to make the cap when it hit me. Claret..Red..Riding Hood…ooooo, I could make a hood. There’s enough here to make one and I would be making a red hood – well, claret but it’s the same family. So, there’s a red hooded scarf on the hook! The Knitsville crowd goes wild.

Did I mention the black hoodie last night was started and was more than halfway done outside? It was. Mr. Honey served dinner on the patio last night and we stayed out under the stars (the lights) until after 10. The hoodie was all done and packed up by 1. We need to add a little more light to the patio and then it will be great for late night knitting. Mr. H. already put in some larger watt bulbs but he didn’t go up as high as he could have. So, he’s going to be putting them in and then I can schedule the group over at our place. You know, after I get all the other stuff done.

And because the folks at Knitsville love irony just as much as folks anywhere, there was a good chuckle when Mr. Honey received a jury summons a few days ago. My laughter was short lived though when I saw he was summoned to Daley Plaza. A friggin el stops right across the street. He’s already given me his puppy face and asked if I would take him to the train the morning of and any mornings following. Note: he refused to take me until the last day. I said I would. If we’re both good at it, maybe this could be the start of new careers – jury training. Since they won’t let us  be professional jurors.

It doesn’t feel like a Saturday in Knitsville, it feels like a Monday afternoon. I don’t know why the clock is off and I can’t really worry about it. Truth is, I wouldn’t know how to reset the inner clock and would be afraid to do it if I did know. Best thing to do is accept I think it’s a different day than it is and go on about the day.

The dining room as almost cleared and ready for the carpet to be cleaned. I’ve been extremely lazy but the vacuuming will be done this evening. Usually Mr. H. does the shampooing but he has a car show tomorrow and I don’t mind doing it so I might learn something new .

Someone tell me: the living room and dining room has carpeting which really needs to go – it’s got be about 30 years old and really loves to hold on to dirt. Is it possible to take up the carpet in just the dining room leaving the carpet in the living room until I’m ready to do that room?

We, The Jury, Part 2

3 rib in orange
3 rib in orange

Dear City of Chicago, County of Cook, State of Illinois;
Please stop sending your representatives to stand in front of the T and V cameras saying how there is a fiscal crisis in your city, county and state. Do you hear me Rahm, Toni and Pat because the solution to your financial crisis lies in your court system.

After the jury was seated and we were in the jury room awaiting the judge, we talked about how people got out of jury duty – more on that later – and how none of you actually go after people who don’t show up. In fact, someone mentioned they know people who just throw away the summons and go on with their lives as if nothing ever happened. So that big old notice about there being a possible fine for not going is just wasted ink.  Ink that costs money, used on paper that cost money, being sent to folks to ignore that costs money.

Enforce your own damn law.

Better still, let me revise the entire thing for you: Send out the notice and in the notice put an opt out of jury duty option. For $50 they don’t have to show. Send in $50 and they are removed from the system for two years. But they have to send it back postmarked before the date they are to report.

If they don’t, send a warning notice that says they did not appear and now the $50 won’t cut it. Send us $500 baby or the Sheriff will come a knocking.

Send the sheriff. You got enough at the courthouse making sure a knitting needle ain’t getting in the door. Send some to the ‘better neighborhoods’ and start scaring the citizenry who think civic duty is something to be ignored. Bet they wouldn’t think that when their asses get into trouble. There’s a whole big ass county to cover. You got the manpower – but it to work.

I don’t know what’s more insulting; my peers thinking they can get away with it or my peers actually being able to get away with it because you don’t hold the responsibility with anymore respect than they do. But since there are folks who don’t want to do it, better they have the option of just paying it off and sending money that can be used to pay the jurors who do show. Better they get to stay home then spend the gas and money coming down and giving the excuses they give to get out of it and still get money for the day.

There are more than 5.2 million people in Cook County. If just 1% of those opt out of jury duty during the year that’s 2 M –  Jesse Jackson didn’t make that much and look at how much time he’s been spending at the courthouse. You”ll make more off those folks who just throw the notices away thinking nothing will come of it. Incidentally, my sister in Baltimore says they do come after folks who don’t serve – maybe talk with them about best practices to get you started.

Let me know what you think. I think it’s a win-win all around.
Thanks,
b.
Knitsville is rejoicing today! There is a new hat in the neighborhood. The KOPT hat is off the needles and on the head of a mannequin. I thought today would be knit free day and thus photography day but the skies are ominous and I am thinking I may need to switch the days.

But she rolled off the needles yesterday and it was like a hot knife through warm butter. I didn’t know what to do with myself. It was like the two of us had never had words.

After coming back from date night with Mr. Honey, I had the urge to make a basic crochet slouch. No fancy nothing, just a basic slouch. So that’s what is on the hook right now. And I am wondering if I have enough to finish it. I am using a half skein of chocolate colored yarn so if I do run out I can use a lighter tan on the last few rows and the edging and it will look like something planned that way – I hope – we’ll see.

It’s almost noon and I haven’t had breakfast and it’s the weekend – so I need to skedaddle and go do some stuff. Have a great weekend – keep cool, warm, dry or whatever applies to you!

Knitting Happy

Elfin in cranberry
Elfin in cranberry

I am happy to report the KOPT hat and I are very happy today. No, she is not quite finished but that wasn’t the point (well, it was the point but I lost the fight so I have to find a new point.) She is not being ignored and she is the only project I am currently working and that seems to have satisfied her enormously because just as I did yesterday, I knit just three more stitches and the hat grew another inch. She is now just one inch away from the decrease rows.

Now, I know how I (am other knitters) are when we get close to the end of a project. That urge to get to the next project starts to kick in and we want to get through the end of the current project so we can start the euphoria of casting on the next thing.

I am fighting that down. I just got on the good side of the hat and don’t want to spoil it. I think it is both right and good to tamp down my own selfish urges and think about others for a change. My need of newness can take a back seat to some good old fashioned loyalty.

By the way, I’ve updated the 75 Weeks and the Easy to see you pages. Click above to see them.

Anyway, the next thing to be done isn’t a new thing;  it’s the rasta slouch that’s going into the inventory box to go to the craft show and up in the shop. The craft show is next week. It has a targeted audience (meaning not open to the public) it’s part of a convention for Twilight lovers (writers, movie goers, etc.) The consumers will be relatively small – around 200 – but I don’t need all 200 of them to buy something. First, I don’t have 200 items to sell and second, my goal is to sell 10x the fee. In this case, the fee was $35 so I would like to walk away from the evening with $350 in cash and/or credit sales. So, I need a little over 10% of them to purchase something. Between 20-40 people buying just one item each would make my night.

Because the show is a week away, I have to go into show prep mode and this is happening at the same time as house redecoration mode is taking place. I am starting on the dining room today. The first stage of house redecoration has to be done before July 27 which is the block party. Mary, our gardening guru on the block, is coming down on Saturday to help me get the bed in the front in some kind of order.

So Knitsville has something other than knitting going on. I have been saying I am going to sit outside and do some knitting and it hasn’t happened. A couple of meals have happened out there but no knitting. That needs to change and today might be the day. I think the hat might like being out there. Photography has taken place out there and there’s more of that to come because I have to photograph what’s in my inventory. The next knit free day is tomorrow so hopefully there will be nice weather because I have a ton of photos to take and items to put price tags on and I might as well do all that at once and get stuff packed up.

I’ve been knitting on the KOPT hat as I write – it’s a gift – can I say I am really falling in love with it? I look forward to making it in different colors. It’s a pretty basic hat but there’s something about how it’s knitting up – thicker than the worsted weight – that’s tugging at the heart strings. It si going to the craft show and I hope someone loves her enough to purchase the right to always be with her. She’s also going up in the shop to be made to order.

Such a happy hat!

 

I Fought The Hat…..

stovepipe in cranberry
stovepipe in cranberry

Dear KOPT (Knit One, Purl Two) hat;

Let me begin with my most sincere apology. I consider myself a lover of fiber. I like natural fibers, I like acrylic – I may even prefer acrylic over natural because they cost less and come in lots of pretty colors and feel squishy when you, well, squish them.

I am a knitter, for Christ’s sake, I love me some yarn.

I love the yarn I selected to make you. Nicely enough, it’s called I Love This Yarn. You are knitting up to a nice slouchy hat.

Yes, I say you are knitting up; as in you are not yet done. You are incomplete. In fact, you are more incomplete this morning than you were last night when I challenged your very existence approached you.

I didn’t realize you were lonely. Here you were, upstairs, surrounded by lots of fiber, yes, but none of that fiber was being used to create you. No, all the other creativity was going on downstairs and even in a building that’s next to a jail. (I would mention that at least one of the hooded scarves was completely made up here but that was before you were into being so you wouldn’t know about that.) That other hooded scarf was taken with me and you would not have been allowed into the building because you’re being knit, which was not your choice, but there it is.

You really have that knit time or knitometry down like nothing. I would knit and knit and knit and you just wouldn’t calculate those rows. Instead of listening how you wanted to feel like a wanted child and not something that happened on a drunken night with an even drunker sailor, I would get frustrated with you and say not the kindest things I could say to you on the blog – fiber can read, who knew?

So last night, after finishing yet another cableret hat, I came upstairs to kick the living daylights out of you to give you the time you needed.

I admit I was impatient and I decrease a little, OK – a lot, before you should have been decreased. I might have gotten away with it, if you in your wisdom and need to be heard, hadn’t caused me to skip those stitches that were supposed to be gathered on the yarn needle so when I went to pull the top closed, I unraveled stitches instead and that for some reason caused me to put you back on the mannequin where I saw you were nowhere near the size of a slouch hat.

So, I undid the yarn and because there were two rows of decreases, I had to undo them and just because I wasn’t thinking, I took a couple of rows out to make sure I got all the decreases – I made them in the very last two rows but one may have slipped or something. I then put you back on the circular needles – have you at least noticed they match your color? And did a row to straighten out the stitches and pick up any that were dropped.

And here we are today. I am humbled and sorry. I have gathered you up and you sit in front of me. You are going downstairs to where the big kids play. I know you are happy about this because I’ve only knit three stitches on you this morning and already that inch is back.

You cheeky little devil, playing with time like that. I look forward to seeing the end of you seeing you completed and a part of the family.

Beverly

We, The Jury…Part One

leaf scarf
leaf scarf

I could so easily get knitting needles into the court house. Won’t tell you how. Won’t try it, either. Though, I’m pretty sure I could do it

I don’t understand why people try and get out of jury duty. Law and Order was on the air for twenty years. The Good Wife is pretty darned popular. Court dramas abound. Why wouldn’t people be rushing to do jury duty? A jury of peers is the last defense between politics taking over every last vestige of our lives. We stand in judgement of each other every day over what we wear and who we date, why not do it for something important like getting justice for someone who was wronged? And you get $17.20 a day for the privilege. With lunch and snacks.

Jury duty on a not-so-grand jury is a different process than being on the Grand Jury or the Special Grand Jury. I arrived at the courthouse – early – and was told to go up to the third floor to the jury room. When I got off the elevator there was an armed sheriff sitting behind a desk and she asked if I filled out, signed and dated my jury summons. When I said I had, she told me to walk into the jury room on the right. There was another woman (didn’t look like a sheriff and wasn’t armed) who asked me if my name and address were right on the summons and if I was a citizen. I said yes to all the above and she gave me a panel number.

No one bothered to check my I.D. I could have sent my neighbor, Morgan, who is smaller, white and 13 and no one would have been the wiser – well, except she was 13 but the woman barely looked at me so I think it’s a 50/50 shot Morgan could have taken my place.

The jury room was bigger than what I remembered the last time I was there. There were T and V screens and tables with comfy chairs along with the theater rows of seats. I sat at a table and took out my crochet hook and yarn and started a hooded scarf. We were supposed to be there at 9.

Somewhere around 10, a guy walked out and gave some instructions and then played a video featuring Lester Holt talking about they jury system.

Around 11, they stated calling panels. I was on panel 5 and there are about 30 people who are in your panel. They call two panels at a time, not in any order you can see. My panel wasn’t called first. So I pulled out a sandwich I was smart enough to bring with me. I would have been a genius if I had brought something to drink.

Around 11:30, they called another panel which I was not a part of but then ten minutes after that, my panel was called. I was given a sticker which said I was a juror and they lined us up two by two and took us to our courtroom. Our sheriff pointed out we were going into the ‘rock star’ court room. The court room that lands in the movies – though she couldn’t name a single movie the room was in.

We waited in the hall for about 15 minutes before the judge called us in, introduced himself and then sent us to lunch.

They say the wheels of justice grind slowly. This is probably why.

Knitsville wasn’t without incident. I am now convinced knit time is real and it plays with us. The knit one, purl two hat is refusing to get done. However, someone ordered a prayer shawl and wanted it 70 inches instead of 60. They ordered it on Friday, the last day of jury duty, it was cast on Saturday and completed on Sunday. Can you explain why the hat refuses to be done? I started the hooded scarf on Tuesday, worked on it only at the courthouse when we were in the jury room – believe me, I wish I could have taken it into the courtroom – and it was finished on Thursday. I didn’t touch it during deliberations. But the hat refuses to recognize the rows that were knit on it.

I started another hooded scarf because one of my fellow jurors wanted one in black and ‘without the holes in it’ – what we call lace. I started that yesterday and I am nine rows from finishing it – but the hat refuses to yield. I swear the skein isn’t getting any smaller either. I am wondering if I’m really knitting on it at all. I keep seeing the row marker come around but I don’t have anyone who can collaborate that I am actually making stitches.

Today, I am going to finish the hooded scarf and I am going out into the cold weather – it’s June and it’s below 70 today after being muggy as Hades yesterday – and photograph some stuff because I have to get the scarf listed and send the link to Carolyn (the Juror) who wants it. Can’t let the chance slip away. Then I have a cableret to finish. Then the knit two, purl one hat and I are going to have a détente.

Someone’s going to be finished today.

Herman..Johnnie..Rick..Tony..Sean..Marc..Crish..Jon..Quin..Jeremy..Erick

daddy

This year my nephew, Jeremy became a father and my niece, Erica, became a mother just this month. And with the birth of those babies, a new era in our family began: my two brothers became grandfathers.

Grandfathers. Those two little boys I fought with, laughed with, played cards with, got into trouble with (them more than me) are now grandfathers.

I remember the moment it hit me after Erick was born and I said to myself: Y’all have some shoes to fill. But I wasn’t talking about my father (though he was a more than pretty good grandfather) I was thinking of my own grandfather: Herman Horton.

Granddaddy died when I was in grade school so I didn’t have him very long but he was funny and he was sweet and he worked really hard. He smoked a pipe and I can still recall him sitting at a chair in our dining room table with it in his mouth and the aroma of cherry tobacco and puff of smoke that went with it. I loved it.

He had an oval coin holder and he would take it out and press it together to make it open and take out a nickel or a dime and in those days you could some good eats for that.

He and my grandmother would come up during the summer and he would sell watermelons and huge bags of pecans would find their way to our house.

He chuckled with a belly laugh and he was fun to be around. When we would go down to Louisiana to visit them, I would spend time with him and his dog, Poochie, in the back yard. He would let me follow him around doing whatever it was he did. I swear I remember him killing a chicken but one of my sisters will let me know if that’s something imagined.

I don’t recall him ever making me angry or sad or making me cry though I am certain I must have done something that needed correction.

What I remember most about my grandfather is that he was crazy about my grandmother. They loved each other very much. My grand mother was the harder one. I do remember her raising her voice. She was the tougher one but he mellowed her out. It was fifty years of Ying and Yang with the pair of them. I searched for a photo of the two of them standing in our living room playfully pointing a finger at each other as they posed for the photo. She was giddy and girlish and no one could bring that out of her but him.

I don’t want to shortchange my father in any way. I got to see him with most of his grandchildren and it was clear he was proud of them and he teased them way more than he ever teased us. The addition of grandchildren in his life gave him permission to really enjoy the feeling of having them around and it also made him proud of the children that birthed them. They rounded him out and gave him joy.

And now it’s Rick’s and Tony’s turn. And judging from the flying around the country and emails and voice mail and Facebook updates; they’re already goners. Ana Marie has already carved out that place in a heart where granddaughters make grown men cry and Erick has already rearranged Rick’s DNA to make him go from a self-contained guy to a brother who actually picks up the phone and calls his siblings.

With these kids, they share the mantle of parenthood with their kids and take up the mantle of grandfatherhood and it’s a wonderful thing that it comes to both of them so closely. They can share it. They become the keepers and the builders on of the granddaddy legacy: spoil em and send them back to their parents.

Happy Father’s Day to all Dads – even Mr. Honey who has done his share of parenting – but especially to Rick and Tony who have a new phase of it with the two generations that are coming behind.

I am thrilled and happy for them and I can do more than imagine how my father would feel seeing his boys enter into this part of their lives. His cup runneth over.

I love you, big brothers; enjoy the day with your children and with theirs.