Saturday, October 3, 2015
School started a couple of months ago here, so I am now officially the mom of two elementary students! (And goodbye daycare payments, woohoo!) What I'm wondering is when did I become old enough to have a third grader; I remember being a third grader.
Both boys are playing sports this year. J started a second season of soccer a few weeks ago, and after taking a couple year hiatus C had his first basketball practice this week.
On the knitting front, I'm working on a second Christmas stocking. I've pretty much conceded that E's and mine won't be done before this Christmas but I want to make sure both boys have theirs.
My scarf is slow going. Unfortunately I missed the deadline for the lace along I was participating in. It's pretty much become just my plane knitting since the stocking is too bulky to take.
Speaking of plane knitting, I got to cross another state off my list as I had to go to Oregon last week. I've now hit 40% of the US. By the way Portland is beautiful!
Sunday, August 9, 2015
I finished the Christmas stocking I was working on. We took a week long vacation to San Diego, which gave me plenty of time to knit - we planned our vacation to have a lot of down time this year, not so go go go, which I think was great for everyone. By the time we pulled back in our driveway I only had to Kitchener the toe (I'm prone to car sickness so I couldn't look at my hands long enough while riding to finish it).
I absolutely love the way it turned out! But I wanted to try lining it so that nothing would catch on the floats if I stuffed it. While I am not an experienced sewer, lining this ended up being super easy.
I found an awesome snowflake fabric at Joann to coordinate with the knitted snowflake motif. Then I laid out my stocking on the fabric, tracing it and adding a half inch seam allowance. I cut it slightly shorter than the stocking (up to the red ridge).
I cut the first piece out, then used it to trace the second piece (turning it so I wouldn't have two front side pieces and no backside pieces.
Friday, July 17, 2015
A few years ago I made a tutu for my niece's second birthday. Obviously she has outgrown that one but a few months ago she asked me to make her a new one. She wanted one like Angelina Ballerina's friend (I have boys who have no interest in the show so I have no idea what her name is). I followed the same pattern as before but obviously made it wider and longer. I varied the length slightly between 13-15 inches long (so I cut the strips between 27-29 inches) to give it a little bit of depth.
I forgot that the increased width and length would really add up. I went through just under four rolls of tulle! But what fun - I kind of want one for me!
I packaged it up with two books to create a nice little gift.
Happy birthday to one of my favorite five year olds!
Tuesday, June 30, 2015
I think I'm finally getting in the groove with my stocking and am really starting to make progress. In a week I've gone from this:
It helped to switch needles. I was using my Hiya Hiyas with five inch tips. They were just slightly too long and I felt like I had to force the yarn around because it was stretched so tight. I switched to a four inch tip and now it seems like it's going much more smoothly.
Monday, June 22, 2015
What a hectic month! So much happened with family and work. My sister got married! I'm so excited for her and my new BIL is a great guy. I was one of the bridesmaids and my boys were both in the wedding too. I finished the bow ties that I was working on for the little boys.
I'm so happy with the way they turned out.
(Goofy kid modeling the tie at the wedding)
We also adopted a new dog. It was sort of unplanned. We had been talking about getting another dog but hadn't made a firm decision or found one who fit with our family. Then my SIL told us about someone who needed to re home their dog. When we heard more about the dog we knew she would be a perfect fit for our family. So meet Foxy!
She's two and about 30 lbs. She loves our boys and gets along amazingly with our other two. I'm so glad she joined our household.
On top of all of that I also had to travel out of state twice for work in the last month. Not so bad but certainly kept me hopping with all of the other things going on too.
Sunday, May 17, 2015
When do I knit?
Normally my knitting time is at night, after my kids and hubby go to bed. I kick my feet up and try to take advantage of the hubbub of the day dying down in "my" spot on the couch. I also have a great knitting group that I meet with for an hour once a week to knit, compare projects and gab.
I also have a few other non-everyday times that I sneak a little extra knitting in. First, my new job requires a little more traveling than before. I'm a nervous flyer, so having my needles with me helps make the flight go a little smoother. I also make sure to set aside a few hours for knitting every year on my birthday (today, yay!) I go to Starbucks, drink my latte, and knit and just completely relax.
Where do I knit?
Well, as I alluded to before, my primary knitting spot is the couch, even though I sometimes knit in public too. But the space that I really consider my knitting place is our office/craft room. We still need a place for a computer and some books but I've turned the rest of the space into a home for all of my yarn (and fabric and paints and ribbon).
Tuesday, May 12, 2015
So today's topic for Knitting and Crochet blog week is not about knitting per se but rather all about the blogger. So some things to know about me.
- I have been married for almost 14 years
- I met my husband in high school. Yes our prom picture is hanging on the wall (next to our wedding picture)
- I have only sisters, no brothers
- However I have only sons, no daughters
- I love warm weather. I freeze in temperatures below 80 F. Lucky for me I live in Arizona
- My favorite color is green
- I have surprisingly little green yarn
- I love "chick lit" books. It's the reading equivalent of a brownie
- Someday I want to visit all fifty states. So far I've been to 19 of them
- If I could have any career I'd be a professional singer. Not really a practical idea, though, so I think I'll just stick to singing in the car
- Part of the reason I learned to knit was to keep me busy after I finished college and no longer had mountains of homework
- I may have a slight sock yarn addiction
- I only wear socks a few months of the year (see the aforementioned living in AZ)
- I'm a novice sewer but I can see why people love it
- I like to make lists
Monday, May 11, 2015
...what would I be?
Today is the first day of the sixth annual Knit and Crochet blog week and the first topic is "If you were yarn, what would you be?" An interesting topic for sure. There are so many different types of yarn out there, each with their own purpose for knitting and/or crocheting. Cotton is great for washcloths but can really stretch as a garment unless blended with another yarn. Silk is soft and luxurious but very delicate and wouldn't be good for a child's stuffed animal. In way people are like this too. We all have such different personalities but each person has a purpose and place in this world.
Okay, enough philosophy. Onto me and what yarn I would consider myself to be. I thought about the properties yarn has and think I have an idea. I would consider myself 100% wool. Wool is versatile and can be used in so many projects. Wool can be stretched and molded into shape. It has great memory. But if you agitate it too much, it can felt, shrinking in on itself.
Sunday, May 3, 2015
Sunday, April 5, 2015
Thursday, April 2, 2015
I can finally talk about what's been on my needles lately - birthday socks for my husband. He likes to cycle so I thought it would be fun to make him socks that match a couple of his riding jerseys. I found a great yarn through Yarns to Inspire on Etsy called Holidaze. I used my usual sock method - cuff down and heel flap - but I cast on 72 stitches instead of 64. I also did just five inches for the cuff because E doesn't like socks that are too tall. The pooling on this yarn is really cool, the picture doesn't do it justice.
Update - I finished them, just a couple weeks after his birthday. He liked them
Friday, February 27, 2015
Recently I finished a new pair of socks. This pair was my "I need a small project; I want to work on something for me; I have nothing else to work on; my feet are cold" socks. In other words I picked them up and put them down repeatedly over the last six months until I really felt compelled to actually make an effort to finish them.
This pair has actually traveled farther than my other three pairs. I started them on a plane ride to Denver, when I didn't want to bring the boys' Christmas sweater projects with me because of the size it would have taken in my carryon and I was procrastinating on the washcloths I did for Christmas. Socks seemed like a good solution.
Monday, February 9, 2015
I knitted another Sheldon - we're having a baby shower for a coworker this week at work. She's having a girl so I thought it would be fun to use pink for the shell. Otherwise I did it pretty much the same as my last Sheldon. I did find the crocheting much easier than the last one but man, the icord border is still super tricky and time consuming. It looks great though so I think it's worth it.
Friday, February 6, 2015
Yesterday my family had to say goodbye to a kind, beautiful, funny woman. My grandma passed away early last week and we had her memorial yesterday. So many great stories were shared and we all smiled and laughed at the memories. Goodbye Grandma, you will forever be in my heart.
Thursday, January 1, 2015
2014 was an interesting year to say the least. Lots of changes and quite a few rough patches. Towards the beginning of the year I started a new job after twelve years at my old one. That was definitely one of the high points of the year - I'm very happy with the change I made. Unfortunately I lost my grandpa this year and we had to put down our (almost) 14 year old dog. J broke his arm, I dealt with a bad staph infection, and C had to have oral surgery to remove an extra tooth in his palate. I'm hoping 2015 is a healthier year.
C turned 7 this year. (I can't believe I have a second grader. I remember being a second grader!) J turned five. E and I celebrated our lucky number 13 anniversary. We were fortunate enough to vacation with E's family in San Diego for a week this summer. The boys got to experience Legoland for the first time and we had lots of beach time. I also got to travel some for work this year, going to San Diego, Denver and Seattle. I've only been through Denver, not staying there (for example we ate at Casa Bonita on the way back from Iowa last summer) so it was nice to spend some time there, even if I was pretty busy. I did manage to find time one evening to have dinner with a friend too! Seattle was great too - again really busy but I'd never been there before. Very different than Arizona.
We were also hit with an epic rainstorm here. Our area went one of the longest times without rain but later in the year we had a 100 year storm come through. It literally flooded out most of the freeways. I'd never seen anything like it.
And now onto my 2014 resolution list. Like most of the past few years, I got through 40% of my list. First the hits.
- Read five books - yep, in fact I read at least seven. A couple of reasons, one I put more effort into it; two with the new job I was traveling more. More time in airports and on planes led to a lot more reading time.
- Organizing the pantry - I knocked this out early in the year and kept it more or less fixed the whole year.
- Make a crochet project - I made washcloths to go along with my homemade vanilla extract and one was crocheted. It finally seemed to click with me.
- Sew a needle holder - It was a little wonky - one piece was sewn in the wrong order so a seam shows on the outside. But it works wonderfully and I use it all the time.
- Frosting piping practice - Decorated my son's birthday cupcakes in a Minecraft theme.
- Blog at least three times a month - I'm going to fudge and say yes. Some months I didn't hit at least three times but I did get over 36 posts total for the year and wrote at least once every month.
And now the misses. Make bread, make truffles, make caramels. Nope, still on the baking bucket list. Although I have yeast in the pantry, ready to go... Learn to play guitar - never made it a priority. Learn entrelac, learn a new cast on or off - I really tried a new cast on, I just can't seem to wrap my head around it. Garden - I have such a black thumb! Lose 23 pounds - epic fail, I actually put a little weight back on.
So the list for 2015 will have some repeats on it. But I've got a few new things too:
- Blog three times a month (36 for the year)
- Make stockings by Christmas for each member of the family
- Knit at least three pairs of socks (2/27/15, 4/14/15; 12/23/15)
- Make a shawl/stole
- Sew an item of clothing (5/3/15)
- Make bread
- Make caramels
- Make truffles
- Lose 10 pounds
- Read at least seven books (40 Love - 2/11/15; Sleeping Arrangements - 2/22/15; Baby Proof - 5/18/15; Fishbowl - 5/23/15; The Good Daughters - 6/181/15; Inside the O'Briens - 7/29/15; Funny Girl - 8/3/15; The Help - 9/18/15; Fall of Marigolds - 9/29/15; The One and Only - 10/29/15; Still Alice - 11/1/115; Shopaholic to the Rescue - 12/29/15)
- Learn to play guitar
- Learn a new cast on/cast off
- Finish office/craft room organization
Hopefully I finish above 40% this year! Here's to a great 2015!