On the Schuykill Expressway (which is the major route to Emily's house), there are signs warning of falling rocks.  The road is built through hills of rock and falling rocks are a reality in the winter when the ice and rain get into the cracks.  There are also signs warning of deer crossing. 

I'm sure you've all seen some form of these signs, they're fairly standard but PennDot (PA Dept of Transportation) has a sense of humor.  If you embiggen this photo, you can see the red nose on the deer.  The first time I saw this, I laughed out loud.  Then Pk got into the right lane so I could try to get a shot out of a vehicle moving at 55 mph.  

It makes the drive to Em's house a little more fun.

When I went shopping last weekend, I bought bananas from the Produce Junction, something I don't normally do.  They sell fruits and vegetables in bulk and we don't eat the bananas before they go bad.  I don't like wasting them.   Usually, I buy them at the grocery store and buy only a few at a time.  I noticed that there were 8 small nearly brown bananas in the fruit bowl yesterday and tonight before I made dinner, I made 4 loaves of banana bread.  Two are done and two are in the oven.  Kate will pick one up tomorrow and Pk will take one to work.  He likes to share baked goods and his fellow workers seem to enjoy them as well.  This way there will only be two loaves in the house for Pk, El and I to eat.    It smells warm and cinnamon-y in the house.  Mmmmmm.

It rained like the dickens today!  The temps were 20 degrees cooler at the end of the day than they were in the morning.  The wind blew fiercely so the few leaves that started the day on the trees are now on the ground.  It's seasonable for December.  It will be winter here in 3 weeks (and btw, I think starting the seasons on the first of the month is way easier but we tend to base it on earth movement, etc, so our seasons change at odd times) and for the first time, I wore a wool coat to work with a shawl underneath.  It's the shawl that was made and given to me when Em had her surgery.  I wore it on my shoulders at work and received so many compliments!  (photo from obviously much warmer weather!)  I left it on my chair and use it for pulling over my shoulders when my office mate wants to open the window. ( our office is way overheated).

Pk and I are starting our Christmas preparations this weekend.  The house is decorated and the shopping will be started.  We'll hopefully find a tree we like and also find some star cookies (chocolate covered graham cracker stars without which it will not be Christmas according to Pk).    I enjoy Christmas shopping and actually look forward to it.   I like this time of year and the anticipation that comes with it.  It makes me feel like a kid.  Not that it takes much to do that.

Work gets a little hairy this time of year.  The holidays bring out the emotional in people.  I spend a lot of time scrambling to make sure people get what they need and feel like someone cares.  For me, it's the most important part of what I do, making sure people feel respected and cared for.  There's so much stigma attached to mental illness that some of my clients feel like no one understands what they're going through and they depend on me and the agency to provide them with support.  Mostly, we do a good job.  One of my clients said "I like coming here.  When I came in the door, I go aaahhhhh.  I know people will take care of me".  While I appreciated the sentiment (after all this is what we aim for), I thought to myself that I go aaahhhh when I go OUT of the building at the end of the day.

There goes the oven timer.  The banana bread is done.  Time to take it out and let it cool.  Have a good night, all.


amy said…
Oooh, I like your new background! When did that change? We're getting your rain and wind now (it amuses me, how we get your weather 12-24 hours after you do).

When I see my son's teacher--the one who teaches the kindy/first grade class--I go "ahhhh." She just exudes calmness and unflappability. I aspire to be like that but I just don't think it's my personality. It's perfect in a K/1 teacher though.
Rose Red said…
Yay for shawl compliments and also compliments from your clients - It must be a difficult job but at least yourclients appreciate it, and it helps them.
drkknits said…
oh its the shawl! it suits you so well, i must say! i think i just hold my breath this time of year and say aaah when its all over. and i am bit excited about being in your neck of woods, my timetable has changed a little and next sunday might be a bit more relaxed, will let you know. is it snowing yet?! love the background too.
Kaye said…
I'm pretty sure that's not PA DOT but "grafitti" because I've seen those all over the place. Hee hee! My favorite graffittied sign had to be one where someone had a special sticker made that read "& Hardy" to stick on a sign for Laurel Road.

Mmmmm....banana bread! Sounds divine!
Roxie said…
The new background rocks! As does the new shawl. But I worry about leaving precious things out at work when you go home. A friend worked in an office where one of the janitors started urinating on the sweaters and jackets left on chairs overnight. Another friend lost quite a lovely shawl. Left it on her chair, came to work the next day and it was gone. May it not happen to you!
KnitTech said…
Yum! Love banana bread. We also buy a few bananas at a time, so we aren't wasteful.
Olivia said…
Nice shawl! I always like the way you talk about your work. You don't sugar coat it but your love and satisfaction in what you do shows through.
Bells said…
how lovely to see our shawl again! It feels like so long ago. Don't they make great office wear? I always think taking a shawl to work makes the day a little more elegant.

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