Friday, February 27, 2015

Knitting Fever and Quilting

I have one pair of socks on the needles and I have holes in my finger so, I am waiting for those to heal before I start working on that sock again.  I have a Selbu mitten on another set of needles, they are wood so, the points aren't sharp and this works out well.  I am also taking time to work on my first quilt. 

New for me...glasses!  Reading glasses only!  I couldn't read a box at the grocery store so, I knew something was up.  I went ahead and found an eye doctor, and managed to get the hubby an appointment as well.  We both need reading glasses, he is less blind than I am.  So, I found myself a package of 5 for cheap on Amazon.  They work well. This means I have a pair in each room where I need to read. 

I work on the mitten in front of the tv at night.  I try to work on my quilt during the day.  After several false starts, I finally found my niche.  I swear, that rotary cutter was a nightmare at first, I know you are thinking, how can that be since it looks like a pizza cutter?  Uh, a pizza cutter is easy compared to getting used to this thing.  I finally think I have it down pat.  I am using a square fussy cutter for my pattern.  My batting is 48 inches by 60 inches.  I am using polyester batting for my first one and will save the expensive cotton batting for a bigger one down the road. 

I had planned to make each of my dogs a quilt but, since the loss of my hound dog, that blew that out of the water.  I lost interest and now, I am making a lap quilt for myself.  I have also realized how damn picky I am when it comes to the colors in my quilt and the fabric choices out there.  My first one is going to be pinks, blacks and whites.  I am searching for my perfect backing fabric next.  That is the hard part for me.  I am looking for the perfect one. 

The Selbu mitten is going for charity.  I have started my charity knitting for the year.  I hit a sale on sock yarn on Zulily and decided to use it for my charity knitting.  I have one hat completed and now I am working on the mitten.  After the mittens, I am thinking, a neck cozy out of stash yarn.  I have way too much yarn and I need to use it.  So, the kids who are needy will be getting items from me out of it. 

I have plans to knit a custom pair of socks for a dear friend's daughter.  I want to knit a pair for my niece, Maribeth.  She needs a new pair.  The pair of the needles right now, are going to my niece, Kate. 

With the cold the way it is these days, one minute it is warm down here and the next, cold.  Freaky weird weather for Texas.  Seriously!  I have my tomato plants which I grew from seed, they have to be hardened and I can't set them out until all freeze warnings are no more.  I need to get these babies into the ground.  I also have some basil and parsley that I planted.  I love fresh flat leaf parsley.  It is really fantastic in tempura.  It makes it creamy tasting when it is fried in tempura batter.  The hubby and I love it. 

I want to see if I can knit projects for charity out of a bin of yarn at a time.  I want to empty a bin and then move on to another bin.  I tried to see if I could do this in a month, it didn't work.  So, I am going to try and see if I can do it and how long it takes for me to use up the yarn in one bin. 

I need to knit myself a new pair of mittens, I can't seem to find mine.  I lose everything. 

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Sock Knitting Due to Freaking Cold Feet

I have been trying to sit down and work on my newest sock, I am knitting a pair for myself.  Right now, I am wearing two mismatched wool socks.  I have no idea where their mates are so, I am desperate to keep my feet warm.  Hence the mismatched socks.  I decided to start knitting when this problem came to light. 

So, I started on the Meagan sock with beads.  I thought my yarn was slightly off and then realization hit, it wasn't my favorite merino/silk sock yarn...nope, it is some other blend and for the life of me, I can't even begin to guess what it is, I dyed it up in a beautiful periwinkle color and no idea what is in it.  There might be some angora in it.  I am not sure.  Don't you hate when you dye a yarn up and can't remember what the fiber content is?  Am I the only one this happens to? 

I have been dealing with antibiotics.  I was at the ER last week  Monday with my current woe.  My doctor was booked solid and I was in agony.  So, I told the hubby we were going to deal with it.  I couldn't take it any longer. 

I sleep most of the day away on this particular antibiotic and the current ailment was kicking my ass.  I have never seen the like before.  I will say that I do not want this back...ever!  It literally sucked the life out of me for a while.  I am getting better and I am trying to work around it.  I do two house cleaning items a day and that is it for me right now.  Nothing more.  Sad but, true. 

I haven't given up on knitting, yet.  I am still an avid participant with it.  I am not buying any yarn this year, I am using stash yarn.  What I have is it.  I have way too much yarn as it is and I have plans for it.  I think I am going to start knitting mittens with some of it for the unfortunate children that I collect items for and send them along for this year's campaign.  I also have plans for hats and neck warmers.  I am not a fan of the scarf, too much material and way overrated.  I might even delve into gloves. I just know that there are a lot of needy kids with nothing.  Maybe this will help those kids. 

I wish I could sit down and spin because I have a lot of fiber that needs to become yarn.  No idea when the arm will heal for me to sit and do that.  It was getting better and then I over did it, again.  Grr!  Isn't that the way it goes?  I thought it was healing and took off the ugly brace...bad idea. 

Hopefully, I will have enough cuff of the sock done soon, and I will take pictures for everyone to see. 

Have a wonderful week and happy knitting! 

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Time to Knit

I have been suffering from the stupid tennis elbow.  It still freaking hurts.  Grr!  I am about to start knitting slowly to get myself back into shape.  I have a pair of socks I want to knit.  The yarn is in the bathroom and it is my yarn.  Yeah, I should be knitting my niece a pair of socks but, I deserve a new pair since I am the knitter. 

I wrapped Christmas presents last night.  I was going to give the hubby a new suitcase but, I decided to keep it.  He has plenty of luggage.  My luggage bit it on our last cruise.  That was a while back. 

The only problem...it is solid black.  Time to add something pretty to it so, I will know it is mine.  I wonder what I can paint on it to make it look like me?  I have to think about it for a while. 

I put the mini tree up yesterday.  My Christmas tree is small since I just didn't feel like messing with a big one.  The arm, and just hating having to deal with the whole moving of furniture to get it in front of the window.  Sucks!  The little one was harder to decorate than the big one.  On a big one, I can put the ornaments where ever and it works...the little one, I had to look and move ornaments so, like colors wouldn't be next to each other.  It turned out really well. 

We are in the funky season zone over here, one day hot, the next cold.  It sucks!  We aren't turning on the heat unless it gets super cold.  So, we have a nice quilt on the bed.  Thankfully we have cats who love to sleep on the bed with us.  Nothing like a warm cat pressed up against me in the cold.  I am not telling the cat that I love her being pressed up against me because a hot cat in the summer is another story.  Ugh! 

I am sick of cold feet.  I sleep in wool socks in the winter.  I need a new pair, too.  Time to knit some for me.  I want to knit one of my patterns that I have written recently.  I deserve something beautiful.  I also think I want to enter my socks into a contest.  I have been saying this for years but, I think this year, I am going to do it.  Let's see what I can win.  :) 

I hope everyone has a safe and wonderful rest of the week.  If I don't post before Christmas again...Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Napoleon, My Hound Dog

Friday was a really bad day for us.  My hubby took our old hound dog in to the vet, we knew it wasn't going to be a good prognosis, he had some serious health issues and we knew it was time.  Napoleon gave up on Thursday night, he stopped eating, he was having trouble breathing.  I was petting his soft ears and let him know how much I loved him. 

Hubby took him in and the vet said his heart murmur had really gotten worse, 6 being the worst, his was at 5.  His back legs no longer worked, he had some spine issues.  He was 13 years old.  So, Gary called me and said he was having him put down.  It was hard for both of us and it was better for him, no more pain, no more suffering.  He had been through major surgery to have a ruptured lump removed, he then had pancreatitis and we had to nurse him back to health.  He wasn't living a good life, not for a dog.  No more of his favorite foods, no more kibble with any form of fat, he had to live on diet dog food. 

Napoleon relaxing with his best friend, Bootsy.
He lived for Taco Bell.  Do not ask me why this dog loved it but, he did.  He would drool when we had it.  He would sit there and try to dog-natize us.  Those big brown eyes just staring at us. 

I miss his singing.  He sang to me every night.  I miss that and so does Ody, our corgi.  He and Napoleon were buddies since Boots is old and grouchy.  They spent a lot of time together in the back yard. 

I look in his home each morning expecting to see him snoring away.  Sigh! 

I love you my old faithful hound dog.  You will be missed. 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Travel Pillow

The travel pillow side A



The travel pillow side B

Here is the travel pillow all finished.  I stuffed it with polyester fiberfill.  I had a bag in my stash.  Would you ever guess this was supposed to be a Christmas tree skirt?  If nothing else, this has taught me to make something else.  I serged the inside of the neck so, it will take the wear and tear.  Hopefully, hubby will use it. I guess it will be the only like it on an airplane. 
 
 

Tennis Elbow Persists...

Well, I am not a good patient at all.  I am still dealing with the damn tennis elbow.  I am not supposed to use my arm.  I use that arm for everything.  So, it is still bothering me and besides the lectures the hubby gives me about it...that is making me crazy!  Try to not use an arm for a while, it is essential.  I guess I can call the hubby to do everything for me.  He doesn't have the time.  So, I use the arm...big Catch 22. 

So, a month ago, I bought a 2 ft fake light up Christmas tree. It was 50% off. I started looking for a tree skirt, nothing out there that I liked and when I did find one, expensive.  I don't do expensive, I love to bargain shop.  I refuse to pay $50 for a mini tree skirt.  So, I did the next best thing, I hit the fabric store and found my fabrics.  I buy pretty much all of my fabric in the 1 yard increment unless I need more.  I bought several fabrics in the Christmas theme and used my coupons.  Love coupons!  Most of my items were on sale and I came out of there pretty good.  I decided to design my own tree skirt.  How hard can that be? 

Think tree skirt and now take an idiot, that would be me, when it came to this idea...I can't believe I did that.  I even told the hubby how much of an idiot I was for even thinking of doing it that way, I made a travel pillow in Christmas fabric.  Yeah, that good.  I will finish sewing that one and stuff it full of fiber fill.  It is pretty but, come on...what in the world was I thinking?  No idea! 

So, I went back and re-cut my fabric and figured it out.  Sometimes it takes a while.  This time it did.  I finished my tree skirt.  Woo!  It looks fabulous on my little tree. 
Christmas travel pillow

My first Christmas tree skirt

Another view of my first Christmas tree skirt
I  have it on my sewing/craft table right now.  I think it is going to live there and after I finish designing and sewing my angel, she will go on top of the tree.  I bought remnant fabrics for her. I plan to take the left over fabric from the travel pillow to make her outfit.  She will be a rag doll angel.  I think she will be pretty and easy to sew. 

I used a quilting technique for my tree skirt because I can't seem to work with bias tape.  No idea how the stuff works.  I am  self taught at sewing.  I don't even use patterns, they screw me up.  I look at it and figure out how it is supposed to work.  Hence the travel pillow.  I even used the serging stitches that came with my Janome DC 1050 machine.  Love my Janome.  It sure as hell beats the Singer I learned to sew on.  I don't miss the "clack, clack, clack" of that Singer.  I would oil the hell out of the thing and it still made that awful noise.  I gave the machine to my niece, Kate.  She sews on it.  She likes it.  Now her older sister, I found a beginners Janome on sale and bought her that one.  It is nice with it's built in stitches.  I am hoping she will take the time to learn to use her machine. 

I have given up on teaching them to knit.  I hope they do learn to sew.  It comes in handy.  I have found that one out. 

I have put off sewing my tree skirt and after working out the logistics of this one, I might make myself another one in another color.  I have plans to use my little tree again.  This year, I just do not feel like dealing with our big tree.  I have no desire to mess with it.  I bought some mini ornaments and I have ribbon for this tree as my garland.  It should be sweet. 

Friday, October 24, 2014

Tennis Elbow

I was diagnosed with tennis elbow last week.  I do not play tennis.  If I would play tennis, I would have to wear one of those little tennis skirts and I would have to book my court.  That is how it works in my subdivision because it seems two women beat the hell out of each other one day with their tennis rackets fighting over a court. 

I know...right? 

So, I am in my own version of hell because I can't knit.  No knitting and it is about to drive me around the bend.  Crocheting is out since it is my right arm.

I am limited with what I can do with my right hand and arm.  If I do something I am not supposed to, my fingers go numb.  Great.  Grocery shopping was fun today.  I have to learn to not use the arm.  It was painful on the way out of the store.  I am glad I took the Escape, it is easy to get into and out of and it is easy to load groceries into. Love that pop up back end. 

Since the corgi and I have both gained weight, today I decided was the first day of exercising outside the home.  I took him on a walk.  We have to start small and work our way up to the mile.  The vet said he needs to weigh in at 29 pounds.  I nearly fell over laughing from that one.  He loves to eat.  So, she told me to start out small and then work our way up to that mile.  It works for me.  He weighed in at 41.5 pounds.  Big for a corgi. 

Anyway, my tennis elbow is from vacuuming.  Yep, vacuuming with my Dyson DC59 Motor head.  Love that thing!  Only bad thing, since it is so top heavy, it hurt the arm and elbow.  Thus my problems. 

The thought of me in one of those itty bitty tennis skirts...No, I don't think so.  Ever!  The thought of my butt hanging out, I will skip that. 

For my snack, I had baby spinach, baby kale, coconut water, some frozen fruit and blended it all up in the Vitamix.  That is one powerful blender.  It is so freaking loud.  We broke down and decided to get one last year.  We had 2 blenders that we received for our wedding 14 years ago and they pretty much sucked.  So, we pawned them off onto my sister.  Told her she could always garage sale them.  She used them once and garage saled them and bought a better blender from the proceeds. 

My sister tells me I am weird for liking kale.  I have to have leafy greens these days.  They have to be part of my diet.  Doctor's orders.  I do like them but, I generally don't cook with them.  So, I am using the Vitamix to have my leafy greens in a more palatable way. 

I am waiting for pomegranate season.  I love those things!  I get one and snack away on it.  It is a nice treat to get one.