Saturday, February 6, 2016

Winter link up party and a mad scientist........

The wonderful and kind Jennifer at thistle bear, is lovely enough to host a party each month where we can chat about our Winter projects.  I looked back to October when I first joined in and I was amazed at my hopes and dreams for the Winter.  I was going to make two sweaters and another Zick Zack Shawl.  I had the yarn, I had the patterns, and I was so full of myself with my project projections.  

Now it is time to face the music.  I have been an utter fail at those projects.  The gray sweater in the photo above is testament to that.  It has been moved here and there around my house, it falls out of the basket in a feeble attempt to get my attention, and I just swoop it back in not even caring if a few stitches fall off the needle.  Flaum, I had such hopes for you, but your fisherman's rib almost put me in a coma.    I swear, as God is my witness, I will return to you and you will get finished...............eventually.

As for the other projects currently in the works, there is the woven scarf that looks quite uneven in the photo above, another Queen Anne's Lace Scarf, and all the fixings for another Hitchhiker Scarf.  I have decided I have a very short attention span when it comes to projects these days.  I think I might have to go the the doctor for some medication so I can calm down and get some bigger projects done, and not be distracted by all the ideas floating around in my head.  I wonder if she would feel it was appropriate to give me a controlled substance for this very reason?  If she was a knitter she sure would.

A very big thanks to Jennifer for hosting this link party.  You will see all sorts of beautiful projects if you go over and visit.  Hopefully her fellow party followers are actually working on their original projects unlike me.

This boy cracks me up, well most of the time he does.  He has taken to wearing this mask all over the house.  He reminds me of a mad scientist.  I can't believe he likes breathing through this thing, well breathing over this thing.  As he still has quite the cough it isn't all bad he is wearing it.  Now to get it off of him so we can go run some errands.  I don't want people to feel they have to be careful around him due to a poor immune system.  He is a bit of a nutter, wonder where he gets that from?

On another note,  he stood up all by himself for 19 seconds a few nights ago, after I got him in position that is.  That is a  new WORLD RECORD for us!!!  Watch this space, I expect great things to be happening with this little one.

Hope you are having a great weekend.
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Thursday, February 4, 2016

Caroline is complaining.......

Caroline my dress form has started to complain about her work load.  She told me she feels like the photo shoots are a little too frequent lately.  She wants to, "join a union" and, "get paid time off".  I reminded her that she has a nice warm home to live in, and that she would be bored if I didn't drape something on her and take her photo, and of course she is lucky to not be living in a box at Joann Fabrics.  Then I preceded to show her all the rain that we are having outside and told her she could be like other models and have to work in, "that!"  She has now quieted down a bit.  Sassy dress forms are not what I need right now.

Please note the project above that has created all the fuss, a simple Queen Anne's Lace Scarf made from some of the remainder of my Interlacements, Grape Harvest yarn.  I guess this is my go to scarf pattern as it is fun to make and crochets up very fast.

Here is a look at the yarn featured in weaving and crochet.  I think it is fun to see how it works with both projects.  I will be sending this scarf to my SIL, yes the one I thought about sending the shawl/table runner to.  She is a wonderful woman and we are approaching the two year anniversary of my BIL's death.  I just want her to know I am thinking about her.

I still have enough yarn over to make another scarf which I started last night.  This is a very soft  yarn,  and it makes as lovely of a scarf as it does a table runner/shawl.  I just wish I knew which Interlacements yarn this is as there was no name on the label, just the color Grape Harvest.  I am trying to use up this beautiful yarn so I add nothing to my stash.

Today I got home from work, put Little Buddy to bed for a nap, and had time to warp up my loom, after doing my paperwork of course.  I am going for a very simple soft pink scarf.

This is Sirdar Snuggly Baby Bamboo yarn I bought when my favorite yarn store in Tampa closed.  It was a good 40 or 50% off when I bought it so it was a bargain.  I have used this yarn before and I love it.  It is indeed soft and snuggly!   I hope to whip this up this weekend.  Hopefully the rain stays around a while which will give me the excuse to stay inside and play.  

When I arrived home from work and sat down at my desk to do my paperwork this is what I found.  Not a good sign is it?  Thank goodness it isn't a real sheep!  This little one has been righted and is now standing on all four legs.  Hope it isn't and omen of some kind!

Happy Thursday Everyone.
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Tuesday, February 2, 2016

A woven bag, and Little Buddy......

I am having a bit of fun with my loom lately.  I saw this gray yarn in my yarn cabinet and wondered how it would look woven up.  I had a bag in mind to make but was not entirely sure how to go about it.   I measured out about 12 inched wide in warp with about 72 inches in length.  I used chunky yarn that I packed in tightly so it would make a dense piece.  I wove until I couldn't weave anymore and got this really beautiful rectangle of woven fabric..

I popped over to Joann's yesterday on my way to work and picked up this strap and red button, the button looks expensive but it was only $2.99.   Today after an early work day due to someone canceling, I sewed up the seams, sewed on the straps, made a fly by the seat of my pants large button hole, and sewed on the button.  Yes I should have been doing paperwork but I will do that later.  Who can write things down when you have this vision of something you have to finish in your head?

This bag is made from James C Brett Marble Chunky 100% acrylic yarn.  This is not yarn I purchased rather was donated to me when I was gathering bags and bags of yarn for a local group who have made over 10,000 items for those in need.  This yarn was from my good friend Cathy who said I could have a look in her bag to see if there was anything I wanted before I handed it over.  You know me and gray, I simply can't resist.  I actually thought I would make her something out of it but as you can see I didn't.  So there goes 300 more yards out of my stash, I can still call it stash yarn if it has been in my cabinet for a while, right?  The final measurements are 10 1/2 inches wide by 13/1/2  long.  I am quite in love with it at the moment. 

Speaking of love I am loving these tulips I bought on Sunday at the market.  I had no idea what color they would be and I am thrilled with the pink softness of them.  They are so beautiful and are brightening up my kitchen table making me smile when I look at them.

Do you remember this baby?  This is Little Buddy two years ago almost to the day.  He came to live with us two years ago tomorrow, a big anniversary.  He wasn't officially adopted at that point, he was still in foster care and we were considered his new foster family until the adoption went through.  Those were some stressful days, getting used to a little one again, hoping we did not screw up and blow it so he would not be with us forever.  I did not breath a sigh of relief until those papers were signed almost five months later.  He sure was tiny, look at how big his glasses were!  He is growing, thriving, and making so much progress.  He makes me laugh and well to be honest he is a pistol so he often makes me mad.  Sounds like he is my son doesn't it?

I wanted to thank you all for your input on the shawl/table runner.  I just can't seem to take it off my table so I think the decision has been made.  I have a zillion shawls already so I doubt I will wear it, but I can see it all the time on my table so I think that is the way to go.  If it was shorter in length it would have gone to my SIL, but at just over 5' tall this would be way to much for her.  I think I will make her a scarf instead.

Hope you are having a good week so far, I better get on with that paperwork.
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Saturday, January 30, 2016

Is it a shawl or a table runner, and a gift.........

Here is a question I bet you don't hear very often, should this be a shawl or a table runner?   I am still undecided.  I just took this off my loom today and I have to tell you I am very much in love with this piece.  Remember my impulse yarn buying a while back, no not this weeks impulse buy but a few weeks ago?  This is the Interlacements Yarn purchase from my nearest yarn store in Dunedin Florida, Raspberries.  I am really growing to love this little store, it is quaint, and in a quaint little town, the owner is lovely and the yarn is delicious.   This message is for you GiGi Knits, I  do love this store it is worth the drive especially as you can visit lots of other fun shoppes too if you have the time, which I normally do not!

Here it is in shawl form, a very soft and lovely drape I'd say.  Not that I am tooting my own horn or anything.  It is 18 1/2 inches wide and 73 inches long.  Now that is fine for me because I am near 5'10 inches tall, although at my doctors appointment this week they had me at a solid 5' 9".  I wonder if I am shrinking?  But I was thinking of it for my SIL in Wisconsin who is short, I mean SHORT so keep that in mind as you are thinking about my initial question.

Here are two shots of it on my dining room table,  The top one with my light on and the bottom with it off.   It does look pretty nice.  We don't use this table frequently, well to pile something on for a day or two but not to eat at.  It could spice up this room a bit if I let it stay here.

This shawl/table runner took about 750 yards of yarn.  The Interlacements Soya 2 ply was the warp yarn, it is super thin and liked to tangle.  I was not impressed and probably would have shot myself in the head if I was using it to knit with.  It does make a sturdy warp thread so I can't completely be mad at it.  The other yarn with all the color, going back and forth is also from Interlacements, but I have no idea what the actual name of that yarn is as it was not on the skein, I only know it is the color, Grape Harvest.  I have plenty left over for a scarf or two to make with this beautiful yarn.  So put your thinking caps on and tell what you think this piece should be.

I have to give a shout out to my dear friend Susanne for sending me this lovely gift.  It arrived yesterday after being sent on January 16.  I think Susanne thought it was here, and it sure wasn't.  I wonder where it went in all of those days.  It traveled here from Ohio, really not that far from Florida is it?  Certainly not 13 days away!  I am loving this little present.  The birdhouse is completely intriguing to Little Buddy, he keeps asking me if it is real.  And the book is a perfect addition to my knitting book library.  Thank you so much for thinking of me Susanne, you are kind and thoughtful and of lets not forget generous.

Last but not least I finished my first Wendy Supreme cotton chunky scarf.  Size 13 needles made this the fastest knit ever.  I went with my go to drop stitch pattern that seems to be my favorite to use with beautiful yarn.  It helps the yarn go a long way and shows you the beauty of it more than a plain garter stitch scarf would.

I finished with one inch left, I am not kidding, one inch.  Now that is using up your yarn!

I am taking votes, shawl or table runner?
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Thursday, January 28, 2016

Simple Garter Stitch Scarf and other matters...............

Sometimes simple is the best and frankly all I have brain power for.  The other day when it was cool enough to wear a scarf I decided I really can't stand any of the scarves I have made for myself.  Almost all of them are made with wool, and to be honest I LOVE wool, just not anywhere near my neck.  I tried on a few and was scratching before I could blink.  So I cast on with my remaining ball of yarn from my just finished baby blanket and made myself a scarf, just like that.  Simple scarf, simple stitch, and simply perfect.

I used Berroco Remix yarn in cream.  I used all of the 216 yards to make the scarf and fringe.  Cast on 23 stitches with size 10 1/2 needles and knit, knit, knit until it is long enough or you run out of yarn.  Nothing could be simpler, and frankly sometimes simple is exactly the way to go.  There are no cables or fancy lace.  There are no bobbles or slipped stitches.  Just plain and beautiful knitting.  No counting, no worries, just knit every row until you are done.  The finished scarf is 54 inches long without counting the fringe.  Berroco Remix is made from a combination of Nylon/Cotton/Acrylic/Silk/Linen.  It is soft enough for a baby blanket and soft enough for my neck.   I am ready to go with my new scarf, now it just has to get cool out again.


I stopped by the yarn store on my way home from work today to show them the baby blanket I just finished, before I ship it off to the new baby to be.  They wanted to see the finished project with two neutral yarns and I think they liked it.  I did have a look around and found a few things that just jumped into my hands.  I was trying not to buy yarn for a while but I caved.  You see I worked 38 hours in four days and I am tired, so tired I could not resist the yarn fumes drifting up from all the beautiful yarn.  I kept myself in check by only buying these.  And because it is raining and dreary out (my favorite kind of day) my photos are not very good.  The silver/gray yarn will be another scarf.  The fun ribbon yarn was on sale and I simply could not resist  it, the colors are so much fun.  Have any of you across the pond used this Wendy Supreme luxury cotton chunky yarn?  It says it is made in England and I am curious at your thoughts.  I saw a sweater made out of it in the store, it seems very heavy for that, but for a scarf made on extra big needles it might be perfect.

Two of my favorite Christmas presents sit on my desk right next to my computer.  I lite this candle while doing paperwork or a bit of blog hopping.  The sheep makes me smile everyday.

Tonight I am staying in.  The rain is falling fast and my house feels very cozy.  I am aiming for a simple weekend, nothing to drastic, just time to rest up from my busy work week.  I have a little one still nursing a tiny cold and a furry boy who's head is still healing, and is looking so much better.  I am not sure they want a quiet weekend but I sure do.

Hope you have had a wonderful week.
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Sunday, January 24, 2016

The marvelous moon and a baby blanket finish.....................

The full moon was spectacular the other night.  The wind was whipping the clouds by it so fast, it was fascinating to watch, but it was chilly out so I kept my picture taking to a minimum.  I bet all of you on the East Coast were not able to see it as you were in the midst of that huge blizzard.  Yikes, what a mess!  I guess Winter is finally here and making a big statement.  We are chilly here, a lovely break from the intense heat and a reminder that there are actually seasons.

Due to my enforced day at home yesterday I was able to get some crocheting done.  I thought I was going to add one more stripe of cream to this blanket, but after a good look at it I felt it was big enough for a baby.  As soon as I figured that out I turned into a crochet mad woman, I just wanted it finished.   So last night while watching Grace and Frankie on Netflix, and laughing out loud at their antics, I finished this blanket.  This show is not appropriate for little ones but it is hysterical for all of us adults, I think you should all jump on your computers, iPad's, or televisions and watch this show.  I almost could not turn it off it made me giggle so much.

Here are the baby blanket particulars,
Yarn: Berroco Remix, 2 balls in Cream and 3 in Almond
1050 yards used in total
Size I hook
14 stitch ripple
chain 126 stitches plus 2 for the first dc
9 repeats of the pattern
finished size 34 in. by 36 in. 
For new great niece or nephew due in May

And for all of you covered in snow, this is for you.  There will be flowers again, and there will be color.  Just enjoy the beauty of Winter, which is easier said than done I realize as I sit here in Florida and I am not under two feet of snow.  There might not be a beauty in shoveling snow but looking at it from inside with a cup of tea sounds fun.

Thank you all for you kind thoughts about my boys.
Little Buddy has a cold, a runny, stuffy nose and a cough.  He is not miserable, just snotty.  Max is still on pain medication which makes him think he can do more than he can, like bark at the pool.  He is enjoying these stay at home days where he can be petted and tended to round the clock.

Hope you are all safe and warm, and for those of you around the world I hope you have cooled off.

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Friday, January 22, 2016

Five thoughts on Friday.......

I am joining in with Amy at Love Made My Home for Five on Friday today.  I swear I am going to try and keep it at five, but you know me I am chatty.

Yesterday Little Buddy and I went to the eye doctor who was thrilled this little one can now identify letters.  He was able to see the letters posted on the screen and we found out that his right eye is working much better than his left.  We know his left eye rotates in, you can see it in the photo above, but we did not suspect his vision was so bad in that eye.  He needs surgery to straighten it out in hopes his brain will continues to read the visual messages it receives from the left eye.  So we are now waiting to hear when that surgery will be.

Speaking of surgery, this boy has had a tough day.  He had a cyst removed from his forehead this morning, along with another that was drained from his neck.  Oh and I forgot shots!!!!  The worst part of it was getting out of the car, Max slipped and could not get up without help.  This is becoming a little more common for him, but adding the height of the car with the slip and that means an injury.  He has now received some pain medication and is happily sleeping, oh and he got a few treats too!
He looks like he has been in a barroom brawl!  I will be keeping a close eye on him this weekend and doping him up as needed, there is nothing worse than an animal in pain.

This is what greeted me this morning.  It was raining so hard out, not the best day to take Little Buddy to school or Max to the Vet.  It did stop to just a sprinkle during those excursions so I am thankful for that.  I love rain so much, rain and gray skies.  Of course now that I can stay in the rest of the day it has cleared up.  I hope all of you in the East experiencing the "Monster Storm" are all safe and cozy in your homes.  Why is every weather system now the owner of some name?

I went jean shopping yesterday I was in desperate need, you see I wear a lot of jean capri pants to work and I bust the knees out of them in no time at all.  I have fixed a few pair, but two of them were just looking to ratty to wear even with the repairs, so I decided to make my very favorite pair into shorts.  I cut them off, serged the ends, rolled them up and sewed them so they won't come undone.  It was a quick fix and now I have a fun and soft pair of shorts to wear.  

With my second pair I decided to make a skirt like my wonderful sewing/knitting/awesome friend Jo made at the end of December.  Her skirt turned out terrific so I thought I might try to re-purpose one for myself.  There are loads of tutorials on the internet, and Pinterest on how to do this.  I found Steffi's  tutorial to be amazingly helpful. I followed it step by step with  the exception of inserting a triangle in the side seams, I just inserted in the front and back. It was fun to make and it fits!  I think I am actually going to use this skirt all the time.

This is a closer view of the front insert.

I know you don't want to see my actual backside so how about just seeing the backside of the skirt?  These jeans were originally on sale from Target, not expensive and really I did not think they fit very well.  But now with a little work I have a great skirt that will go with everything.

My husband is gone for the weekend and Little Buddy came home from school with a clear runny nose and a big attitude.  He is napping now so I have decided we are laying low all weekend long.  I had gone to the grocery store yesterday to stock up, I have my weaving and baby blanket to work on and as the temperature dips I have a cozy house to stay in.  I can watch my furry boy to make sure he is okay and my little boy to make sure that runny nose is not turning into something far worse.  Based on his tantrum earlier I think I might have a sick boy on my hands.

I am looking forward to taking the weekend as it comes, at a slower pace.  How about you?
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