Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Second Post for the day.

So, I guess Blogspot has a downside. I can only add five photos per post. Its still better than yahoo which only allows me one and that one has to be at the top...not where I want to put it.

Anyway, here is the continuation of my previous post.


On Sunday night we went with our good friend Nathan to see Bethlehem at Broadmoor. Broodmore is a huge Baptist church in our city and every year they built Bethlehem in their parking lot. It was one of the neatest nativity scenes I have every seen. It was an actual village with villagers milling about and selling their wares. (not actually but pretending.) They had basketweavers, blacksmiths, a fish stand, a bakery, some houses, a temple and all sorts of things. They even had live animals milling about. While we were standing in line to get in, two villagers came up and gave us some shekels (pennies and nickles) to pay our taxes with once we got inside. They had some tax collectors inside. At the gate there was a beggar asking for alms so we gave him a penny from our tax money. The whole thing was really neat. They had an inn and out front was the innkeeper and his wife with a couple of goats and a basket of vegetables and they told us they were getting ready to make some goat stew. Another villager came up and asked where the baby Jesus was and the lady said she didn't know who she was talking about but that a young couple had the come the night before who had a baby in the stable out back and she was going to take them some of her goat stew once she got it made. The whole thing was absolutely wonderful. It would have taken a lot of money to put this whole thing on. At then end they have a huge tent with a choir in it and tables upon tables of cookies and hot drinks. That alone would have cost a fortune. There were at least a thousand people there while we were there and they were going to be putting this on for two nights each weekend for two weekends. Here are a couple of pictures I got while we were there.

The first one is of Chloe and I petting the Roman's horse. Chloe liked the horse but didn't like touching it.

This second picture was inside the refreshment tent after we walked through the village.


I look horrible in this picture. I wanted to post it anyway though. Having a baby is truly humbling.

I know I am not supposed to be making things for myself when I have Christmas presents to do but I just couldn't help myself. When I see a neat pattern, I just have to try it. So, I have made two hats for myself.

This first hat was made using this Peachy Keen pattern and some Caron Cozy yarn. I am in love with this yarn. I have been trying out new yarns and patterns lately to broaden my horizens and I am finding that there are so many nicer things out there. I am having a blast. This crochetville forum is really helping along in my crocheting skills.


This second hat was made using this Gastby cloche pattern and some leftover Red Heart Lustersheen I had from that poncho I made myself. I think I should have used a thicker sport weight yarn. This hat turned out slightly too big for my taste. I wanted it to sit above my eyebrows like in the photo at the website and mine has kind of a flare that I didn't want. Oh well, its cute anyway. Now I just have to come up with a flower for the side of it. That website charges for thier flower patterns so I haven't made one yet. I am thinking about buying the patterns since they are so unique and I probably could never come up with a design as great as theirs.


I did finish the purse I was working on for my friend Laura. (Ashlie's sister...I talk alot about Ashlie) I was not too happy with how it turned out though. It is not the same purse they have pictured on the front of the pattern. This was one of those leaflets you can pull off in a store and it was Hobby Lobby's own pattern. I am very disappointed with it. It is not my own error either. The pattern was extremely easy and there is not way I could mistake what they were saying. I read it and reread it and there was no mistakes on my part. There were about 30-40 extra rows in my purse than in the picture. Also, the stitching around the middle portion looks nothing like the purse. My purse is actually the size of a tote. NOT what I was going for. Laura doesn't carry totes. She likes purses. Oh well, she'll like it just cause I made it anyway. I know her.

Our friends from England will be arriving Friday. I am so excited. That is the day after tomorrow. I have been busy cleaning my house today and getting ready for their arrival. In fact, I really should still be cleaning but I needed to take a break and I haven't posted here in so long I figured it was long due. (before I forgot everything I wanted to post about too.)

So, we are going to be taking them to the Rainforest cafe for dinner on Friday night after they get in. Saturday we are going to Six Flags over Texas and also to Medival times for dinner that night. I am totally excited about that. We will be eating with out hands while we watch knights on horses have jousting tournements. Talk about cool!! Then on Sunday we will be going to the Galleria and ice skating and shopping the day away. Hopefully we will be getting back in time Sunday night to take them to that Bethlahem village. I think thier girls would love that. (ages 7-8 or 8-9, I'm not for sure on thier ages)

This will be such a fun time. Hopefully I can get a few breaks to post here about the fun we are having and some pics but if I can't, I am sure you all will understand.

My dear daughter has awoke so I must go spend some precious time with her before she grows up too much. I was feeding her earlier and was amazed at how much she has grown and the difference between her just a few short months ago. These times are precious and I don't want to waste any of it. I won't get them back.

Have a wonderful day everyone.

Been Busy!!

Well, I have been busy of late. I don't even know where to begin. First, I guess is that I designed my first ever hat. This will be for Chloe. It turned out great and I love it. I put it on her and its a bit big but that will leave room for her to grow into. I am going to design a sweater, some booties and maybe a dress to go with the hat. It will be called Sweet Indulgence. I love that name.



Chloe has been growing. It is getting very heavy to carry her around in her carseat. We don't have to do it very often fortunately. Only when she falls asleep in it and we want to keep her asleep. The big news of the day is that she took her first step two days ago. YIPEEE!!! I am so excited for her. She even took two in a row. Then today, she took four little ones in a row. Won't be long now til she is walking and running all around the house. She already crawls off in a split second and I have to go hunting for her. She is super quick.

I have recieved three elf packages so far from Crochetville. These people sure are generous. I love that forum. Anyone who reads this who is not a member over there should join. (unless you don't crochet...then you might not fit in.) Can you believe it???There is actually a place where people who DON'T crochet don't fit in. I love it.

Anyway, here are three pictures of the packages I have recieved.


This is the first package I received and it contained three skeins of really pretty yarn. I don't know what I am going to make from it yet. Maybe a knitted hat and scarf set. I don't know if I will have enough though. We will have to see. If not then maybe just a scarf. Hmmmm!!!! (scratching the top of my head.)


This second picture is the second package I recieved. It is a crochet hook case. Perfect for holding my steel hooks. I think its great. I had asked for it on my crochetville wishlist and some nice elf granted it for me.

This third picture is what I recieved in the mail today. I was so suprised to get yet another package. I have a bookmark on my to-do list for myself and now I don't have to make it since I recieved this one from an elf. I love butterflies too. I wonder if she knew this about me when she made the bookmark. Anyway, its great. I also love the soap cover. I think I know who sent me this package because I know who designed the soap cover. I had been wanting one of these too.

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you to all the little elves who have been so kind as to send me these wonderful gifts. You have all brought smiles to my face.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

And a Matching Scarf

Well, I just had to have a scarf tonight to match the Bow and Arrow Hat I made from Dot's pattern. She didn't have a scarf pattern to match so I just took part of the pattern and repeated it over and over for a skinny scarf. It took me about 20 minutes to complete it and I am in love with it. Absolutely in love. I will be wearing this set often and am really looking forward to making some other sets from different patterns.

Here is a close-up of the scarf pattern.


So we went to that Christmas party tonight and it was a lot of fun. I actually knew someone there so that made it fun. Had I not seen them, it would have been extremely boring with such a young baby. My friend held Chloe the whole time so I got to eat and look around and things. James wore an elf costume since he was one of Santa's elves. My pictures of him didn't turn out though. The lighting on the stage was bad and from the distance that I was, it just didn't turn out. Too bad because you all would have laughed and laughed and laughed. He had on this dress thing and some green tights and some elf shoes. Okay, the really funny part is that the dress only came about midthigh!!! Can you imagine??? That is a lot of tights showing on those legs. I am thankful that James is secure enough in himself that he would volunteer for something like this just to bring joy to children. (gosh, it would be horrible if he weren't secure and that's why he did it...okay...let's not think about that...he's secure...he's secure....he's secure.)


So Chloe got a present from Santa. We were actually supposed to have the gift wrapped and to the office this morning but hey...I have an in with one of the elves so we got that taken care of.


Here is a picture of me and my baby and I am sporting my new and wonderful hat and scarf set. I am still amazed that I made this and am wearing it. I haven't made very much stuff for myself before and I figured it was high time I start. How dare I make things for others and expect them to wear it if I don't wear anything I make. So, I will be making myself some things. In the past I have just had a hard time forking over the money to buy the yarn needed to make the things I like. (the things I like always use the nicer more expensive yarn or I have to buy the $20 book to get the right pattern.) I have actually been emboldened by my girlfriend Ashlie. I am always complimenting her on her wardrobe and the gusty things she wears. (Okay, she's the one with the tin foil space age purse...remember?) Well, she told me that she used to be scared too. Then one day, she just decided that if she liked it...she was wearing it. It no longer mattered to her what other people think. I started thinking about it and that has been my problem. I used to be a bit more of a free spirit in high school. I would wear things that weren't in style just because I liked it or I would wear things with a bit of flash to it. Well, when I met James, he slowly changed me. Not on purpose mind you...just his personality. He has very distinct tastes. Everything has to be just so or its out. Well, over the years my wardrobe has started to relfect that taste. Just boring browns, dark blues, blacks and whites and occaisionally the off white or something. It wasn't until about 2 years ago that I decided that I look really good in dark red so I ventured out a got a few red things for my wardrobe but that was pretty much it.

After my shopping day with Ashlie, I now have pink ( and bright pink at that) and turqoise and other bright colors. I looked in my closet today and smiled because I see colors. So, I made this hat and scarf set and James laughed at it and said he didn't like it. I told him, "Well I DO and I am wearing it whether you like it or not." And I got three compliments on it too. (Santa gave me a compliment...how nice of him.)

Well, I am off now to get some more crocheting done.

A hatting I will go...A hatting I will go!!

I made another hat today. I just had to. I saw this pattern and knew that I had to make it for myself. I was reading it and it called for Baby Coordinates yarn and what luck. I had most of two skeins left over from that hat and bootie set I made for Alissa. I had been thinking while I was making her set that I just love this color of blue and how nice it would be to have a shawl or poncho or shrug or something made from it. Well, when I saw this pattern and that it called for this yarn, I just knew I had to make it. And today. It couldn't wait til after Christmas. (knowing my memory, I would forget what I wanted to make and with what and it would never get done.)

Anyway, this hat took me about an hour to make. Would probably have taken me less time except I did three rows wrong and had to frog. I was reading the pattern too fast. I do that sometimes. more of late since I am on this kick of actually finishing things that I make. I think I have finished more things this year than ever in my life combined!! Actually that is not true. The first year I started charity crocheting I finished a lot of baby items. This is the first year I have finished a bunch of items for myself or for gifts.

Well, here is that picture before I forget.

I actually took this picture myself. It was hard to get myself centered into the camera frame but I think I got the knack of it.

I have the perfect place to wear this today. Tonight is the Sqaudron Christmas party for kids and so we are taking Chloe to it. I know she is a little young but sometimes I just need to get out of the house and this is the perfect opportunity.

She will get to sit on Santa's lap and get her picture taken. ( I just hope she doesn't cry...she gets stranger anxiety.) I am debating whether or not to put her in her Christmas dress I made her or this other Christmas outfit that was given to her. The other outfit is just a simple sleep and play outfit in velour. Not very pretty but it does say "Baby's First Christmas" on it. James is worried that her dress will get dirty. I haven't made up my mind yet. I want her to be cute.

We will be taking a little present for Santa to give to her. They made a price limit on the gift of $10 which I think is a good idea for those older kids who know the prices of things. For Chloe its not that big of a deal. I bought her some soft plastic blocks yesterday for Christmas but I forgot that I was going to also buy her those wooden alphabet blocks with the wagon for her toy. Then on top of that I bought a set of those little peek-a-boo blocks to put in her stocking. So that would have been three sets of blocks for Christmas. How silly of me. So, I think Santa will give her these plastic blocks tonight. Then I can get her those other blocks for her toy.

Well, I am off to get some of this house cleaned up before we have to go tonight. James and his friend Nathan spent the weekend fixing the leak in our bathtub. The funny thing is, they spent more time (and money I might add) fixing the things they broke themselves while trying to fix the original problem. As my father so wisely says, "Don't mess with plumbing...do it yourself on everything else...but when it comes to plumgbing...call someone." Well James did call someone yesterday but they quoted him $79 an hour. NOPE!!! Not worth it. He did it himself and with Nathan and they got the job done. No more leaks and now my drain plug thingie works too. I am so proud of my do-it-your-selfer hubby. He is learning. Just a few years ago he would have payed a couple a hundred for someone else to do it and we would still be paying for it on the credit card.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Two Neices and a Nephew

I got a few more gifts done between yesterday and today. I made a hat and bootie set for my newest neice Alissa yesterday.



I used Bernat Baby Coordinates sport weight yarn for this set. I bought a book at Hobby Lobby for 1/2 off of 99 cents so that was a great deal if you ask me. It had two patterns in it. This set (which included a sweater and matching blanket) and another sweater with matching blanket. Two very cute sets. I choose this one for Alissa though. I thought it was very girly. I kind of like the blue with the pink trim. Kind of reminds me of denim.

A couple of months ago, my sister asked me to make her two older kids (1 1/2 and 3 years old) some little blankies to take in the car with them when they go out. It seems that she has to pack three blankies for Alissa because the other two steal them from her. I guess it gets quite cumbersome loading three large blankets around for all of them. So, I made these two lapghans for them. Sarah says they love to stick thier fingers through the afghans so I made two granny squares and then put a simple edge on them.

The first one is one I made for Timothy. It was made in Simply Soft Brites yellow and green. The green looks kind of pale in this picture but it is really a brite lime green. (my computer doesn't like lime green I guess...) I put a simple dc border around the edge of this one.




This second one was made for Megan. She is the oldest of all three kids. This blankie is made in Simply Soft Brites Teal and Grape. (purple) The edging is bigger than Timothy's. I did a sc, ch3 border around it. I love those types of borders.




I tested a hat today for Etaria over at www.crochetgarden.com. This is a very nice hat. I made it for our friend Kirk who is coming over from England for Christmas with his family. We are excited about thier visit. It is less than two weeks away. My how the time flies. It has almost been three years since we saw them last.

Anway, back to the hat. It is called Wood Ridge Mountain Snowcap. She has a scarf to match it too. I didn't test the scarf though. She has a whole collection of hats and scarves called the Rugged Mountain Collection. I help her name those. (can you tell I am proud of that??)


Anyway, I made this hat with Wool-ease. My first time using that type of yarn. I like it except it is a bit rough on my hands. It makes a nice warm hat though. Can you see the cables in this hat? This is the first time I have made cables. I always thought cables were something you knitted. I now know better. This was actually very fun for me to make. Because it was different than any other hat I have made before. (which were the boring sc back and forth type or a pretty baby hat.) I never made a pretty adult hat before so this is nice.

I am a bit concerned that it is not guyish enough. Etaria made these patterns to be unisex and kind of appealing to men. I know that my guy would NOT wear this though. He doesn't like it. I love it though and think it is kind of masculine. I hope that Kirk likes it. I am debating whether or not to give it to him. I don't want to be totally embarrassed by giving a guy something I made that he doesn't like. I will have to ask James in the morning when he wakes up what his opinion is.

So, the other day I promised pics of our Christmas lights. Here they are in all thier splendor.

We finally got them put up Sunday afternoon. I am proud of them. We went out last night and bought a Christmas tree. We actually got a real one this year. Our first real one since we were married. Our very first Christmas, some guy James worked with gave us a bunch of his old Christmas stuff and in it was an 8 foot fake tree in excellent condition. We have used it every year for the past 7 and it is starting to show its age. (whatever that may be) We decided that since we are having company for Christmas this year, we wanted a real tree. Also our house is pretty small and that huge fake tree just took up too much room. With a real tree, we can kind of choose the size we want at the farm.

Now we just have to get it into water and into the house and decorate it. (don't know when that is going to happen...)

Well, its getting late and I need some sleep. (I can't wait to get to heaven and not need sleep anymore. It would still be fun to sleep sometimes. I love crawling under the covers and feeling that warmth and drifting off into slumber land. I just hate this needing it thing. Sleeping is for the birds.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Pig Rear, Bookmark and More Coasters

Wow!! I have been getting so many gifts done and ready to wrap this week it is a miracle. I am almost done with the gifts that need to be mailed. I just have to make a hat and bootie set for my newest neice and a little lapghan for my nephew and all my gifts are ready to go. I still have a bit of shopping to do before I can mail them though. I decided that this year we are going to send a book to each neice and nephew instead of trying to make them all something. That was okay until we got our own little one. I am so busy making things for her all year that I don't have time to make the neices and nephews things. I think one family gift (Snowman cross stitch pictures this year) and a book per child should be good.

I made this Piggies Rear End today. It was so much fun to make and it only took me about 20-30 minutes. I still have to add a magnant but other than that it is complete.


Mr. Piggy rear was made with this pattern and a size G hook with Red Heart Sport yarn in pink. I think it is adorable and that Laura will totally love it.

I made a set of coasters for my sister's stocking. I used this pattern, size 10 navy blue thread and a size 5 hook. I hope she likes them. I took a picture of them with my miniature wine glass.


This last picture today is a bookmark I made for my girlfriend Molly. We were best friends in fourth grade and then I moved away and we maintained contact through the years and are still friends to this day. (quite a feat for 10 year olds, I think!!) Anway, we haven't exchanged gifts ever but I just wanted to let her know that I was thinking of her this year. I have never crocheted a bookmark and after seeing everyone's over at C'ville, I thought it would be something simple and easy to make. I made it in about 40 minutes. Perfect little gift for that last minute person.
I used size 10 thread and a 5 hook and this pattern.

To tell you the truth, I started writing this post on Saturday night but time got away from me and I couldn't get it posted so now it is Monday morning and I am finishing it. I will make another seperate post for todays thing though. So, let's just pretend that this is still Saturday.

I am off now to clean house. (or actually, since its supposed to be Saturday, I'm off to bed.)

Friday, December 02, 2005

2005 Holiday Edition of Getting to Know your Friends


Welcome to the 2005 Holiday Edition of Getting to Know Your Friends!

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate?

Both

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree?

Santa only fills a stocking. One item in the stocking is wrapped, the rest are just set in there.

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white?

White icicle lights on the house. Colored lights on the tree

4. Do you hang mistletoe?

I would if I could find it.

5. When do you put your decorations up?

Day (or weekend) after Thanksgiving. This year the tree will go up later (tonight or tomorrow since we are getting a real one this year.)

6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)?

Mashed potatoes with gravy and dressing.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child?

Going to Leavenworth (village in Washington state made to be like a village in the alps) with my family to do some Christmas shopping.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?

My parents always told me the truth. Santa was for pretend. It was fun anyway.

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?

yes

10. What kind of cookies does Santa get set out for him?

we don't leave cookies

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it?

I like it for a few minutes but hate, hate, hate living in it.

12. Can you ice skate?

yes

13. Do you remember your favorite gift?

jump rope from my dad

14. What's the most important thing about the Holidays for you?

The birth of my Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ and his gift of Salvation to the world.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert?

anything with sugar

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?

Christmas Eve: Having dinner of Clam Chowder, Going to church for the Christmas Eve service, coming home and reading the Christmas story and drinking eggnog and opening a gift.

17. What tops your tree?

a star

18. Which do you prefer Giving or Receiving?

Giving Homemade gifts.

19. What is your favorite Christmas Carol?

Oh Holy Night

20. Candy Canes! Yuck or Yum?

Yum!!! If I'm desperate for sugar. If there is another form of sugar, I will choose that.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Shrug, Purse and Coasters

This week has been a tough one for me emotionally. It is hard to go around my house and not see my dog Simba. I miss her. She is in a better place though and is no longer in pain. This gives me a sense of peace. We had our good times with her and I am thankful for each and every one of them.

I have been able to get a few things done this week in spite of my down trodden emotions. I made myself a shrug using this pattern. It worked up very quickly and I am quite pleased with it. I ran out of yarn though so the ruffle is not as long as it should be. It will work though.


It looks kind of brown in the picture but its really a darker Thyme green. Kind of like a dark army color. I used TLC Amore yarn in Dk. Thyme. It is simply the best yarn. This is the first time I have used it and I am in love. I used a size J hook to make this. It took me two evenings to make. Very easy and you can even adjust the size to whatever you need it to be. I just followed the pattern.

I also worked on Ashlie's purse today. I got a lot of feedback from members over at crochetville so I decided to line the purse and insert plastic canvas to help it hold its shape a bit better. I also added a handle to make the purse a bit more of an every day type purse. The feeling was that if there was no handle, it seemed to be more of an evening clutch style purse.


I ended up scratching the lining. I couldn't get it to work right and my sewing machine isn't feeling well. (I have asked for one for Christmas but since money is a bit tight, I'm not going to be getting one...maybe my birthday.)

I really love the added handle. I think it makes it look truly like a purse.

I joined a crochet-a-long over a c'ville and this one happened to be coasters. I thought this would be a great idea to get some Christmas gifts done in a hurry since coasters work up fast. I made these for our friends Kirk and Rachel who are coming from England to visit for Christmas. (two weeks from tomorrow they arrive...I'm getting excited.) The pattern is called Aspiring Accents Coaster.


These coasters were done in a sage green to match Rachel's living room couch. I used this pattern and size 10 thread with a size 5 hook. They were very easy to make and took me about three hours for all six of them. I thought it would be better to make the set of six instead of four. Knowing the way things have gone for me in the past with visitors, I knew that if I made four, five people would show up for tea and she wouldn't be able to use matching coasters.

I also finished my mother's poncho today. I took a picture of it but I won't be posting it here until after Christmas. I know that she picked out the pattern and all but she hasn't seen the color of yarn I did it in and I think it should be a suprise just how pretty it turned out. I am actually quite pleased with it.

Well, its late here and I really must be going to bed. I am tired. There are a lot of things I need to get done tomorrow. I am planning on framing all six cross stitch pictures that are Christmas gifts tomorrow and crocheting this "pork butt" magnent for my girlfriend Laura. It is quick so that should take me at the most a half an hour. That will be nice...one more thing crossed off my to do list for Christmas. It seems that for every one I cross off, two or three more get added. I am just steadily plodding along and hope to be caught up this next week. (can a crafter ever be caught up??? I think we all know that answer to that question.)

Have a great day everyone. Don't forget to leave me a comment sometime. I love to hear from you and hear what you have to say about the things I make.