October 30, 2009

It Works Like This

Last week when I got home there was a package from Kathy. I wasn't expecting anything - so I tore it open. Funny thing is - while the note was in Kathy's handwriting - it was signed by Lucy! See this is how blogging and ravelry works - you make friends, somebody mentions something you might want (like some templates for adding grippy paint to the bottom of your socks) and then offers to go pick one up and mail it to you. Because you are on a very tight budget (and you like this person, in this case it's Lucy) you offer to send her some orange yarn you have for the pumpkin socks she's wanting to make. She then contacts another bloggy/rav friend who just happens to have an etsy store and voila! you are no longer carrying around your current sock project in a ziplock baggie. Thanks Lucy & Kathy - it's a fabulous bag. Amazing how that works - huh?

October 29, 2009

Simon

Today - instead of sharing my dogs - I'm going to share about Simon. He's not mine to share, but we all know about blog Karma and Simon could use some right now.
His mom, Shannon, is an incredible seamstress/garment maker. She makes all of her clothing and wears them with incredible style. Simon assists her by hanging with her and making sure she takes periodic breaks to stretch her back and walk him.
Last week Shannon received some very bad news about Simon. She described it as being sucker punched. We all know how that feels when one of our loved ones isn't well. Go read about Simon and send whatever karma and goodness you believe in out to help them both.

October 28, 2009

Sheepie!

On Thursday when I got home from work - there was a box on my porch. This one was from Channon and it was chock full of goodies. This is what I saw immediately upon opening it - soft and chewy pig ear alternatives and chocolate mint tea. The dog treats are gone and the tea is fabulous. Upon digging further in the box I found these really fun "g" stitch markers. Everybody knows that I sign everything with just 'g.' Next up with this really fun project bag made out of gerber daisy fabric (gerber daisies are my all time favorites - in fact my tatoo is suppose to be a gerber daisy). Can you see the fleece sheep that is appliqued on the project bag? Adorable. Also included was a lovely hank of Dream in Color Smooshy. I had one hank of this yarn and I used it this summer - fabulous yarn - absolutely lovely! I might have spent a lot of time telling Chan how much I was enjoying knitting with it and how depressed I was that the socks I was knitting from it wouldn't fit me. The colors are spot on for me - I love browns, oranges, and the rusty reds that are in this hank of yarn. Now to find the perfect pattern for me (insert evil laugh here). Thanks Chan - I love it all!

October 27, 2009

Birthday Recap

My kid is living on the Right Coast and has access to loads of fiber festivals. She's also managed to find a really supportive knitting group - thanks to Ravelry.
Anyway - before they went to Rhinebeck - they went to Maryland Sheep and Wool. While there - she found this lovely grey lace weight that is threaded through with color. She bought two hanks for me and set it aside for my birthday. She mailed it when she went to Rhinebeck.
It's completely unlabeled so I don't know the fiber content or yardage - but I'm sure it will make lovely shawl.

October 26, 2009

Day Late -- Dollar Short

Well - here's my entry for Channon's Pizza Party. I've been talking about making this ever since she posted about the pizza party. Well - I finally did. It was as good as I remembered although I punted through it this time - I couldn't find boboli pizza crust when we were grocery shopping so I used pita bread and made individual pizzas - worked great. Carmelized Onion & Sausage Pizza 2t olive oil 3 onions thinly sliced (I used 1) 1T sugar 1t dried oregano 1/4t salt 1 red bell pepper, seeded & thinly sliced (used green) 1/4 pound sweet Italian sausage (I used bulk sausage) 1 prebaked whole-wheat pizza crust 1C fat-free ricotta cheese 1/2C shredded fat-free mozzarella cheese 2T grated Parmesan cheese (skipped it this time) 2T sliced black olives Brown sausage. In another pan, heat oil, add the onions, sugar, oregano & salt; cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions soften, add the bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally. Place the pizza crust on a baking sheet (I assembled mine on the cutting board and the placed them on a pre-heated baking stone). Spread the crust with the ricotta cheese, leaving a border. Top with the onion mixture, mozzarella cheese, sausage and Parmesan. Bake in a 450* oven until cheese is melted and bubbly, 10-12 minutes. Sprinkle with the olives and cut into 6 wedges.

Joy of Blogging

The Neno's Award

Rules and Regulations: 1. As a dedication for those who love blogging and love to encourage friendships through blogging. 2. To seek the reasons why we all love blogging. 3. Put the award in one post as soon as you receive it. 4. Don’t forget to mention the person who gives you the award. 5. Answer the award’s question by writing the reason why you love blogging. 6. Tag and distribute the award to as many people as you like. 7. Don’t forget to notify the award receivers and put their links in your post.

Last week, Channon gave me this lovely award.

Hmmm - why do I love blogging? I love that it has given me a way to share my creativity and even some heartbreaks with friends, near and far, real and "online" only (who are becoming quite real), get advice, support and encouragement.

I'm going to pass this award onto:

Sue, Carolyn, Barb, The Princess, and Shannon

October 23, 2009

Bus Bag

JB came through with the birthday present again this year. Y'all know I have been looking for the perfect bus bag. The last one I found that looked perfect on-line sold out very quickly. Then I found another and emailed JB the link. He went shopping - all by himself - and came back with this one. It's sold as a computer bag so it also has a padded, removable laptop sleeve - which will come in handy. Anyway - it's large, has a pocket in the front to hold my bus pass, has a full length pocket on the back that snaps shut - would be perfect for a magazine or the knitting patterns I'm always carrying around - but it will hold a wet umbrella. Inside - well there is a zippered pocket on one side and a key fob (which I've already attached my keys to). On the other side - zippered coin purse, large pocket for cell phone, and two smaller pockets. Because I only want to carry one bag - it's important that the bag hold everything - It's not like I pack alot of stuff on a daily basis - but I do pack my shoes back and forth, lunch, wallet and knitting.

October 22, 2009

Silent Dogs

Dudley - the strong, silent one.

October 21, 2009

Knit Night

I have been wanting to knit stockings for my family for years - literally. Thanks to the sock knitters anonymous group over on Ravelry, I have finally found the pattern. See that pretty little beauty? That's the falling snow stocking and it's free over at Rav. See - just another reason to join. I started by letting JB pick his color. It's the front "Eagles" teal the group photo. I then had to find colors that worked with the teal. I knew The Princess would be getting pink - but wasn't sure about what I wanted and what to get for The Musical One. She would have liked orange or blue - I think. We had a group of 5 of working on coordinating the colors - because they will all be hung from the mantel together they have to "work" together but look good individually as well. Anyway - I'm knitting them with Cascade 220 with pair each one with white. Not very traditional - but I'm hoping they'll become heirlooms.

October 19, 2009

What's a Girl To Do?

Last Saturday was poker at our house - again. Being a loving wife - I made BBQ Beef sandwiches for JB. He loves them - I can't stand my house smelling like them. See how nice I am? Anyway - what do you do with the left over dogfood BBQ Beef? Well - I put it in muffin tins that I have sprayed with non-stitch spray. Then I toss it in the freezer. As soon as they are frozen - I dump them into a zip-log baggie. They are perfectly portioned for lunch. When packing JB's lunch, I toss one frozen portion of dogfood BBQ Beef into a container and toss a bun into his lunchbox. Perfect!

October 16, 2009

Twinkle Twinkle

When I was cleaning out the sewing room to have the windows installed - I came across lots of stuff that I hadn't had anything to do with for many, many years. One of those things was cross -stitching. I recently packed up all of my cross-stitch supplies and packed them off to Sue.

I did keep this little beauty. I made it when the girls were little for one of them - don't even remember which girl it was for. The cross stitch was finished - but never finished. Oh well - I guess I can frame it for my new grand-dog. It's signed gh 87 - yes, I made that 22 years ago!

Ouch!

October 15, 2009

Lucy

My dogs are not allowed on the furniture. I know we've been over this before. Several times in fact. She looks intelligent, right? But she still thinks my chair in the sun is her's. As soon as I left the room she climbed back in. I'm not sure how she fits into the chair. She's a big girl. What is it with dogs anyway? The smallest dogs spread out to take up the most room and the big dogs curl up and take the tiniest little bit of room - amazes me every time.

October 14, 2009

Pumpkin Mania

Two weeks ago - Miss D emailed me at work and asked if I was going to make it to knitting that evening because she had a little somethin' somethin' for me. Unfortunately, I didn't make it that night. I did make a week later. What was the little present you asked? This year's seasonal mug - it's a pumpkin. It's fabulous - the handle is a stem and there are vines around the mug as well as orange ridges. Tomorrow - it's going for a bus ride so it can be on my desk admiring the view :)

October 13, 2009

Earl Grey

So over the Summer I knit Earl Grey designed and shared by the Yarn Harlot (but I can't find it on her on blog - but it can be found on Ravelry). Anyway - these were finished quite some time ago. JB tried them on and promptly swept them away into his drawer. I modified the pattern because I didn't read through it and realize that only the tiny side cables were suppose to go down the length of the foot. I knit these toe up with a gusset and heel flap and hubby likes them. But - I added a second set of cables on the back side of the socks. Last week he came downstairs wearing them. I quickly grabbed the camera and tried to get a few shots before the bottoms where filled with dog hair - be careful clicking on the photos - what you see might scare you. Anyway - he seems to like them.

October 12, 2009

What I Learned at Sew Camp

After the first time I ever went to Sew Camp - I learned that if I go to the retreat with things cut out and ready to go, I get lots more done. This time I took 8 pairs of flannel jams, some project bags and needles rolls and a big stack of knits that just needed a weekend out of the cupboard apparently. But I did learn a few things. First - I expect way too much of myself. I had expected to have all the flannel pants finished on Friday. I mean seriously - they don't take long. When I didn't have them finished, I spent more time walking around the sewing room, looking at what everyone else was making and visiting. That was good too - but it would have been nicer to come home with more finished projects. Second - as much as I love sewing. It's not nearly as relaxing for me as knitting. When I sew, I sit on the edge of my chair and hunch over the machine, my back starts to ache after a long day and I get knots in my shoulders. When I knit I sit back and my shoulders relax. They are both creative and they both fill a need in my life - but sewing doesn't relax me quite the same way that knitting does. Third - apparently, I'm not as big as I think I am. I made the top from the favorite things jammy pattern. I took my measurements before I cut it out, and I cut out a large, blending to an XL at the hip. I put it together, put bias tape around the edges and tried it on so the straps could be pinned in the back. Way, way, way too big. It will still get finished and I'll have a nice new pair of jams - but not nearly as big as what I cut out.

October 8, 2009

These Models are Killing Me!

After knitting the not a sock, I had almost an entire hank of the red/pink malabrigo left. I couldn't leave this pretty yarn laying around neglected - so I quickly cast it on for a scrunchable scarf. This pattern is a multiple of 3 +2 stitches so I cast on 26, worked until I ran out of yarn. But the models - well last Saturday I needed to photograph the shawl I had finished and I recruited Beau. He was less than pleased (if you don't believe me, go look at the photo). He charged me in dog biscuits. Then I went and asked Lucy if she would model the scarf. She said if she had to and there bet be cookies in it. These dogs of mine - they make great models, but they charge exorbitant prices. (For the record, Lucy is lighter than Beau. And when it's dark even I can't tell them apart.)

October 6, 2009

Blessed

So a good blog friend is having a big blog bash to reminder herself and help everyone else remember all their blessings. So, as requested - I'll list my blessings here: First - a husband who loves me. We will celebrate our 15th anniversary this year and I think it's pretty amazing that we still love each other and enjoy spending time together. Four great dogs. I can't imagine a life without dogs. I'm blessed that no only are my dogs great - but when something happens - Abby gets hurt or Beau bloats - we are financially stable and able to fix our dogs.
Family - we have had the pleasure of raising two responsible, respectful girls to adulthood. The only thing that could make me happier is if they would reproduce already. But, maybe I could wait until they got married, but still.
We are also lucky to have Miss L. Even though she isn't ours, she might as well be. We can count on her to watch the dogs when we are out of town, she good friends with both The Musical One and The Princess and Dudley loves her best.
And finally - velveteen friends. Real life and blog friends who know me. Who know when they get something that they would know I would love and setting it aside. Since I started this blog I have met many, many wonderful people. I love getting to know them. I also like having a connection to my local friends that I don't get to see as much as I would like.
So - as often as I feel down - I am blessed.

October 3, 2009

Did you Miss Me?

When the newest issue of knitty was released, I fell pretty hard for colonnade. This doesn't make a lot of sense to me because I really don't generally care for garments that are so drastically two different colors. But - hey I have the ability and the skills to just not change colors and save myself an end to weave in. Maybe that's the gist of it - 2 more ends to weave in just don't do it for me. Truth be told - there are a lot of prints in my wardrobe and when you add an accessory with two colors it makes it that much harder to blend into an already busy wardrobe. This is a very, very quick knit. There are some problems in the original pattern - but the designer is aware and they have most likely been corrected by now.
I used about 2.5 hanks of Manos del Uruguay. Which I'm sure is a lovely yarn - but I *personally* don't care for it. I like yarns that a have a nice twist and this doesn't. It's also very thick/thin and there were some spots that were so think I though the yarn would break. It didn't. It does spit-splice nicely though so with the exception of the beginning and the end - no ends to weave!
I thought about making this longer, but I was tired of the lace panels by the time the thought hit - there were just over 300 stitches per row at that point. Since I'm pretty sure I'm not cool enough to wear this like the cover model - I think I'll be gifting it - soon.
Final verdict - lovely pattern, if you're one of the cool kids - knit it now!
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