I'm back...

>> Thursday, June 6, 2013

Well after a loooooong break...I'm back.  To start things off right, after all this is a knitting blog, I have some knitting.

A friend of my husbands made us a beautiful wooden end table as a present so as a thank I decided to make him something.  The perfect project to work on if you live anywhere with record breaking temps like where I am....ugh.....already sick of it being hot and it isn't even officially summer.  Anyway I found the perfect pattern for a pair of masculine gloves.  I haven't made full gloves before, just fingerless mitts and mittens.  Fortunately the pattern is laid out very well with a ton of information on how to make the mitts fit perfectly. 

Don't judge the sizing based on this picture.  That is my hand in the glove and I made these for a man.  The pattern is the foxhall glove pattern and it was very easy to follow.  I made the cuff a bit longer then the pattern to ensure no gaps between coat sleeves and glove.  It was knit up in Cascade Yarns Venezia Sport (70% wool and 30% silk).  Warm and incredibly soft.  I have an extra skein waiting to be used for a project for myself.

The scarf was knit by just using the stitch pattern from the gloves.  I swatched and figured out roughly how wide and long I wanted it to be.  I used Cascade 220 for the yarn and the project calculator here.  A very handy tool for creating a project without a pattern to refer to.  I used up every last bit of yarn and although it is a bit scratchier then the gloves it is so squooshy and warm.

Too warm to use now but hopefully he will be grateful for them this winter.  I have missed this space and hopefully everyone hasn't given up on my returning ;)



Summer Accessories?

>> Monday, June 25, 2012

Hats are not usually my knit of choice.  I have recently found out that I have quite a small head.  Despite having shared DNA with a brother who we nicknamed Charlie Brown, on account of his rather large noggin, I have a small head.  Maybe even 'circus' small.  My kids (who are 5 and 7) can almost share hats with me.  Maybe this is why I embraced the big curly hairstyles of the nineties with such gusto.  To create an optical illusion for my rather puny head.  Either way most hats seem to accentuate this problem instead of disguising it.  I am going out landsailing for the fourth of July and while during the day the temperature in the middle of a dry lakebed, in the middle of the desert, is sufficiently hot enough to want me to shave the aforementioned small head, the nights are frigid.  Tank tops and shorts are gratefully traded in for down parkas, wool gloves, and hats.  This makes the campfire that much more enjoyable because while you are cooking your s'more you are warming yourself as well.  Anyway....back to the hat.  The Hinagiku hat was just what I needed (a free Ravelry download).  Snug at the bottom with all that lovely slouchiness at the top to create the illusion of a proportionate head :).

I don't have the tags for this yarn....just something I had stashed.  I didn't knit the pattern up as written.  Instead of the daisy stitch for the crown I just did moss stitch.  K1P1 for two rows and then P1K1 for two rows.  It looks very close to the Daisy stitch but it is a lot simpler.  Other than that small alteration I knit it up just as written.

Now while taking these photos I realized that I have a bit of sun on my shoulders from a weekend at the lake.....and I'm wearing a sundress and hoping the wind will die down so we can go swimming later...let's pretend that its winter and I'm heading out for a sleigh ride with my new tres chic hat.  A hat that is warm and comfortable.  Now if you were blessed with a head that is just the ride size, lucky you, don't be put off my this hat.  I assure you it will look good on any size head....I had my kids try it on and they are of the "charlie brown head" camp.  :)

Happy summer knitting!


Magic Wallets

>> Tuesday, June 12, 2012

This last weekend I made some magic wallets.  Ever heard of those? 

The wallets that magically move your money back and forth under the elastic inside.  I tried three different types of 'binding' inside the wallet to hold the money.  Elastic, ribbon, and elastic cording.  I found the cording was a little fragile and the wallet couldn't hold it's rectangular shape as well.  Here is 1/8 elastic.

Here is one with a pretty ribbon of the same width.

I thought these would make a fun way to give a gift card.  With Itunes, and Kindle books, and all of the other online shopping that goes on now I know gift cards can be a common present.  My niece wants gift cards for her birthday towards horse back riding lessons.  I hate giving kids gift cards (even when they want one) because it just seems so boring.  At least this way the opening is more fun...and they get a fun magic wallet to boot.

I used the tutorial from here.  She has a pdf to download as well as a video...easy peasy.  No sewing needed.  Just fabric, ribbon, mat board and glue.  I did change the size from the original tutorial.  I made these wallets 4" x 2 1/2 " and when I cut the fabric rectangles to cover the board I cut it 5" x 3 1/2".  I found the elastic had more give and also it seemed to hold whatever was placed inside a bit more.  If you don't want to give a gift card this size also held dollars folded up just as easy.

So head over and whip one up...they go super fast, are very versatile, and I think whoever you give it to will love it!


Our Fairies

>> Thursday, June 7, 2012

After many months of no knitting....I'm back.  I have a few things finished and ready to show but I thought I would share this knit because it would make a great gift for Christmas.  I know it's only June and over here we are definitely gearing up for the beach but if you started now you could easily have a family of fairies knit up by December and ready for whatever children are in your life.

In April I knit up some fairies for my kids and a couple of their friends.  Unfortunately I did not take a single picture of all four fairies together so you will have to make do with the two that live here with us.  This is the fairy I made for Avery.  With all the fairies I chose the child's favorite color to match the flower case, the skirt/hat and a strand of their hair.  My kids both have blue eyes so their fairies match them. 

This is the fairy that I made for Jack.  My boy is partial to red so a red hat it is....

Here is the back of our girl fairy.....love those wings. 

This is the flower sack in which each fairy lives.  Jack couldn't find his flower, which is red, so here is the purple flower.  I made sure each fairies skirt/hat matched their flower....

Here is the flower all laid out.

So far this spring our fairies have been hanging from tree branches, and playing in the flower beds....

Here is the ravelry link to the magazine that the pattern was found in.  All four fairies are much loved and played with so cast on....



>> Thursday, May 3, 2012

Whew....that was a long break.  I am tip-toeing my way back into the blogosphere.  I guess I needed a long break...no crafting, sewing, photography, and not much knitting.  Now I feel renewed and excited and ready to jump back in.  Since I'm still finding my footing and I'm not quite sure where to start I am going to cheat and use the "Woman's Day Book" to get started....

I am thinking....how much I missed the blog world.  I found out (from my timeout) that reading posts, writings posts, and working on creative projects helps me stay calm and focused

I am thankful for....my family's health.  A friend of our family has a two year old son who needs a bone marrow transplant.  It has been so hard the last two years watching this little boy suffer as his parents and doctors scrambled to diagnose him and help him heal.

From the kitchen....I am going to make this lemon-blueberry yogurt loaf for the kids for a sweet and tart afternoon snack.  I saw my cousin link to it on pinterest and it looked to good to pass up.

I am creating...I'm hoping to get some pictures of my last two knits to post here for you all.  My needles are empty but after reading, Amy Herzog's Fit to Flatter series, I am planning on casting on Azami this weekend. 

I am going...to soccer practice this afternoon and then tomorrow night my husband and I are going out to dinner with a friend I had growing up that I haven't seen since college.  So excited to catch up and meet her husband.

I am reading...The Game of Thrones series.  My brother loves the television series so I plan on netflixing it when I'm done reading.

I am hoping...to get back in the swing of blogging.

I am hearing....my kids zoom remote control cars around the living room.

Around the house...making lists for my son's fifth birthday party.  Planning an art project for the kids to make for their grandmothers for mother's day. 

Thanks for all the comments/emails and checking in with me while I took my very long sabbatical!  I hope this spring is treating you well and I'll see you again in a few days.


The Best Laid Plans

>> Tuesday, September 27, 2011

I had planned on showing some finished pictures of Aidez but after incorrectly calculating stitches once I joined the sleeves and started on the yoke and having to rip it back twice I am finally on the home stretch.  Since the first day of Autumn has come and gone and I don't have a cardigan to show for it yet I thought I would share my knitting bag. 

Please don't judge me...I know it's awful.  I use it for its form and function not necessarily its beauty.  This is an old bag I think I used to tote around baby stuff at one point.  The reason I like it so much is that it is surrounded by pockets on the outside.  An easy way to divvy up my stuff and the kid crap that I am inevitably toting around.  The inside is a large main compartment that is divided by a zippered divider pocket.  It also has a small zippered bag that is attached by a hook.  I have all my various accessorises in the outside pockets and on the inside is where I keep my knitting.  I just got The Knit Kit in the mail so a little reorganizing of my bag was in order.  I had to the knit kit because I was buying some birthday presents and needed a little bump to get my free shipping... right?

All of those notions are packed away inside the little knit kit.  Up at the top of the knit kit you can't really see it but there is a stitch counter.  It has a tape measure, scissors, stitch markers, crochet hook, point protectors, and a needle.  The perfect knitting "first aid kit" I ordered mine off Amazon, best price, and highly recommend it.

The next thing I carry with me in my bag is my mp3 player.  I realize most people have smart phones but alas I have a 'dumb' phone.  It only makes phone calls.  I have music, movies, pod casts, and audio books.

The next little bits I carry around are a pen, my notebook (not seen here), lip gloss, a hair clip, hand sanitizer, a calculator, lotion, eye drops, and the little polka dot flip-flop is a small nail kit.  These all tuck away nicely in the small outside pockets.  I usually have a pack of cards and a couple small toys to keep my kids busy (helps me get more knitting done)

Lastly I have a small knitting project in there.  This isn't my current knitting project it's a small one.  What if I run out of yarn in my current project??  The HORROR!  So in addition to whatever I'm working on I have this little number tucked in the bag.  A small zippered pencil case like you would find in a Trapper Keeper (do they even make those anymore?) holds the directions, extra needles, an extra stitch counter, and cable needle. 

My long term goal would be to either find a replacement bag that has all the same pocket appeal or sew my own.  Until then this little baby is usually close by to assist me, my MacGyver knitting bag.  What do you keep in your bag?


My lazy tomato sauce

>> Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I am about to admit a disturbing truth about myself.....I hate tomatoes. This statement is terrible for a myriad of reasons the least of which being that I am 1/4 Italian. A sacrilege I know and one I have lived with my whole life. With this truth though is the knowledge that while I hate said fruit I also know they are extremely healthy. So in an effort to be healthy I have to hide tomatoes from myself. Yes, much like you would disguise healthy food for your children I find the need to do it to myself. So I faithfully grow tomato plants every summer and have a huge bounty. My kids eat them, I share with neighbors and friends. When those avenues of distribution have been exhausted then I make my lazy tomato sauce base.
Lazy Tomato Sauce
First get together a few pounds of tomatoes, and if you are fortunate to have some fresh basil and oregano handy then cut off some of that as well.

Wash and chop the above ingredients and add in a diced onion.  Throw them all in your crock pot and cook on low for a few hours

Turn off the crock-pot and let the mixture cool a bit. Then put the mixture through a food mill. Glop (when you are doing this with two kids running around you because they don't want the dragon to get them you are glopping, not gently funnelling, glopping) it all into jars, Tupperware, whatever you have and freeze. Now as the temperatures cool and more one-pot soups, stews, chili's, and casseroles make there way into our evening meals I will mix this little lazy sauce in. That way I can reap the summertime nutrients without having to actually "eat" them. Voila!



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