Category Archives: Knitting

Merry Month of Many Memories

March is one of my favorite months.  Probably because it’s my birthday month and I kind of celebrate it all month long.  I had a cake.

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I got to eat out with some of my favorite people and I got some gift certificates.  Always love that.

David and I took a weekend off and just did what we wanted.  Ate out, relaxed, saw three movies and had a very nice couple of days.   We think we enjoy that as much as we do taking a long vacation.  We will probably do a few more of these weekends this year.  We have one planned to go to Cincinnati in May where I am going to a book signing of one of my favorite bloggers.  If you read Susan Branch’s blog, you know what I’m talking about.  I love her blogs especially the ones where she wrote about Downton Abbey.

I bought myself some new fabric. Seems like every March I do this.

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Love getting new fabric. I don’t have a clue what I will make with this yet, but it will be used, I am sure.

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Love these little flowers.

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Decided to complete this child’s quilt I started last winter.

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Each block has a picture of a child playing.

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Among all the getting ready for Easter and company Sunday, I did get this pinned today. I also made potato salad, cleaned the chicken house, mulched some of the garden, did two loads of laundry, did the ironing, fed the dogs and chickens, moved bags of mulch, prepared supper for David and myself and then I collapsed on the sofa and have not gotten up since!  Oh, yes, I mixed up a batch of sugar cookies too.

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Meanwhile the dogs want me to play with them.  I try to give them some play time with me every day, but today, not so much.  Sorry girls.

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‘”Then I just won’t look at you, Mom.”

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The hens are finally laying again. They went through a few weeks that we were fortunate to get an egg a day.   But now, we have them coming out our ears.  The eggs taste like butter, I’m telling you.  So rich and yellow.

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They have been fertilizing my garden area all winter so I should have a great garden this year.  I think I am just going to plant pumpkins and tomatoes.  I have about fifty tomato plants started with some ready to plant outside when the weather is warmer.

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Chickens still love their “crack.”

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They’ll follow me anywhere when I have a bowl of this in my hand.

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I got this quilt pinned this month.  I’m going to quilt it on the sewing machine.

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I just got a brochure in the mail this week for a quilt magazine and this very quilt was in it.  All finished. I hope I get this finished in a few weeks.

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I’m still knitting.  When I get frustrated trying to knit socks, I knit another scarf.   I’m trying to use up all my old yarn.

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Speaking of socks, I got the heel flap knitted on this sock and then something horrible happened and I ended up tearing out the whole sock.  That makes about six times I have tried to make a sock.

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I’m almost afraid to tell you about this sock because it’s the farthest I have gotten on one.  I knitted the heel flap, turned the heel, picked up stitches(Oh, that was horrendous) and am knitting the gussets now.  I am seeing a very dim light at the end of the tunnel, but until I get a sock finished I am not going to crow.  Even with all the ripping out and starting over, I quite enjoy knitting socks.  I just have to finish one. When I do, you all will be the first to know besides David, as he has been keeping up on my progress and encouraging me when I get all flummoxed.  When learning to knit socks, you need an encourager beside you so you don’t give up.

Spring has sprung in Indiana.  It takes me by surprise every single year.  One day it’s all grey and dark and the next tiny green leaves are sprouting from the ground and on the trees and bushes.

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The Nanking cherry bushes bloomed first and early this year.  They are already almost gone, boo hoo.

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Our two dwarf magnolias are just about to burst into bloom.  The magnolias around us and in town have already been blooming for a week or two.

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Daffodils blooming everywhere.  I have planted hundreds of them through the years and they really are beautiful this year.

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One of my top five favorite flowers.  It’s a shame they only bloom in Spring, but I’ll take them whenever I can get them.

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I really need to divide these flowers.  August Lilies or Magic Lilies. They won’t flower until August after all the foliage has died.  Looks like we will have a lot of flowers in August.

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My Spring angel by Jim Shore.

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Holding a bird in her hand.  The birds are nesting and singing their hearts out.

Happy Spring and have a blessed Easter.  He is risen.  Halleluhah!!  Bye.

 

 

 

The Needle Arts

From the day that my mother first handed me a needle and an old sock and told me to make a doll, I have been interested in the needle arts.  I still have that sock doll somewhere.   From sewing machines needles to knitting needles to quilting needles I have been interested in making things with needles. My year started out with my trying my hand at knitting socks. I have made three false starts and now I am once again trying to knit a sock.

I purchased this book in hopes it would walk me through the dreaded heel. I have not started the heel yet and to tell you the truth, I am very worried about it.

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I’m practicing on a sock with inexpensive wool.  I am liking how it looks so far.

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I ordered this beautiful yarn from this place…

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It’s so beautiful, I am almost afraid to use it.  But won’t these make wonderful socks?

I have never ordered wool like this and I have never rolled balls of yarn before and it took a village to get it done.  If I had tried to figure out how to find the end of the yarn in these skeins, I would have been left with a  knotted up mess, but David helped me and we ended up with this..

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You know how in some of those old movies you would see the husband holding the yarn in both hands while the wife wound the ball?  That is what David and I did.  One skein down, four more to go.  One skein is suppose to knit up a pair of socks.

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Remember the socks I was knitting a few days ago and ripped out?

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Now they are a scarf, but I would much rather have had a pair of socks to show you. Someone will be getting a scarf for Christmas next year.  Ha.  I can do scarves with my eyes closed.  Maybe that is what I am doing wrong.  Not closing my eyes while I knit socks.  What a catastrophe that would be!

I’m not the only one who can ply a needle.

I wanted to learn how to crochet and David found me one of his crochet hooks and started casting on and before we both knew it, he had crocheted this….

 

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He used up some of my old yarn and wore this to work.  He got several compliments on it.  At least one of us is good with the needle.   I still haven’t learned how to crochet.  But it’s on my bucket list.

I licked my wounds after the sock debacle and went back to what I knew I could do.  Quilting. This first week of January I have already completed two quilts.

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This is one I started a couple of years ago and wanted to finish it before Valentine’s Day this year and I did!   This is made with Pamkitty Love fabric which I love.

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Love the look of old fashioned Valentines.

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Another quilt I completed was made from the book, Little Quilts All Through the House.  A book I had had for several years and lost and just last week I ordered it on Amazon for under ten dollars and am so glad I did.  I have made so many little quilts from this particular book in the past years and this week I made another one.

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Another quilt for Valentine’s Day.  This one made up so fast and I absolutely love it.

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I love fabric with words upon it and this is the border to this particular quilt.

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Has a French look about it.    Anyway, I feel a little better that I completed a project once again as I have been rather discouraged about all the sock knitting failures.   I will knit socks.  I won’t give up.

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This is part of a new project I just started this week also.  It’s going to have quilting, embroidering, and applique on it.  I am making this to wear for Valentine’s Day.  I am so excited because it is my own creation and no one will have anything like it when I am completed.  All these ideas just creep into my mind and suddenly I just have to create.  I put everything else aside when the creative juices start flowing.  Must be like the feelings Picasso, Monet and other artists must have felt like when they created their great art, not that anything I make is great art, but it’s my art and I love it.   I will be showing my creation as soon as I get it completed.

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Alas, the day came to take down the Christmas tree.  It’s never as exciting as putting it up although I do enjoy having more room again, but I sure will miss the bright lights and cheer the tree brought into our home.

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Putting away all our much loved ornaments.  We didn’t put as many decorations on the tree this year, but it was just right and looked really pretty.

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I will look forward to seeing these again next Christmas.

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All my snow people watched with interest as we stored all the Christmas paraphernalia away.  They seemed to be saying, “Phew, we get to stay out another month or two because we are snow people.”

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This little guy joined the others this year.

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A friend gave me this wonderful Jim Shore snowman several years ago.  He is my favorite snowperson.  Shhhh, don’t tell the others.

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This little lady joined my Jim Shore collection this Christmas as a gift to me and she stands on a shelf in the kitchen.  The person who gave her to me said it was me with all the cooking and baking I do.  I took that as a compliment.   I love her.

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This is my new exercise ball my daughter and son-in-law gave to me for Christmas.  Every time I went to their house I would bounce on my daughter’s exercise ball and say, ” I would love to have one of these,” and she listened to me.   It’s good for core exercise and balance.  My daughter has MS and uses it to help her balance.   I love bouncing on it.  Feel like a kid again!

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I got this really great poster of butterflies last Fall when we were in Fredricksburg, Texas at Wildseed Farms.  Don’t know how I am going to display it yet, but I love looking at it and reading about all the different butterflies.  So many beautiful ones.

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I’ve seen a few of these in our garden.

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And last but not least, I bought a couple of inexpensive journals at JoAnn’s the other day.  I love writing in journals when I am not writing here.  There is something about putting words on paper.  I go back to some of my old journals that tell about some of our trips, family gatherings and other things and find it such a joy to read about the good times and even some of the not so joyful times because none of us gets to live a life free of pain or sorrow.  But, all in all, we have lived a pretty good life, Dave and I and I hope I can fill many more journals.

Hope you will be creative this year.  If not, I hope you get to enjoy something from a creative person.  Here’s to needles and yarn and thread and creative juices.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

Four More Days

 

I really wish there were two months between Thanksgiving and Christmas.  The four weeks between seem to be a whirlwind of activity.  I just came up for air today since all the gifts are wrapped and I won’t start preparing for Christmas dinner until Wednesday.  Today I have been knitting and watching movies on tv.  It’s rained all day so it’s been kind of nice and cozy here with the tree lights shining, the fireplace flickering and my needles steadily knitting my very first pair of socks.

This past weekend we shared Christmas with part of our family.

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Four boy cousins, who, when they get together, start the wrestling.  Running after each other, climbing on each other, jumping on each other, until someone cries and then they settle down for a bit until they start in again.  I just sit there and laugh, because they are really having a good time together and since they don’t see each other very often, I am glad to see they like to be together.  By the way, I made that quilt on the wall for my daughter several Christmases ago.

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Meanwhile, our granddaughter stays blissfully out of the fray.  She tolerates the boys and that’s about all.

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Santa was there.  David loves to wear his Santa hat and go “Ho ho ho.”

We opened gifts.  Here is something I made.

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A barn quilt made from Lori Holt’s Vintage Farm Girl book which I am in love with.

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Each barn block has another small quilt within the block.

It was a fun day.   Our son-in-law made homemade strombolies which were delicious.

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This is my first sock I am knitting.  I got all excited about knitting socks after reading Lucy’s blog, Attic24, where she knit her first pair of socks.  She crochets beautifully, too.  I have never knitted on circular needles and these are teeny tiny ones, but I have caught on pretty fast and actually am enjoying the process so far, but the dreaded heel will be coming up shortly where I will have to knit a heel flap and turn the heel and pick up stitches and then knit to the toe and do something called the “kitcheners” stitch which is really kind of worrying me because I would hate to get this far and make all kinds of mistakes in the latter process.   I wish I could have an experienced sock knitter sitting right by my side while I start the process so if I start to make a mistake she could tell me so.  I have been watching youtube videos of the process, read all kinds of lessons on the process and I am still rather confused as to how the whole heel thing magically comes together.  I’ll let you know if I make it though.

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I knit on the sock until my hand gets tired and then I take up my other needles and start knitting a scarf.

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I just finished this scarf. It’ a lot longer than shown as I have it folded.

I plan to learn how to crochet in the coming year.  Everyone on my Christmas list plan to receive one of my creations next Christmas.

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Burning candles to brighten up the dull days.  This is my favorite scent to burn during the Christmas season.

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We have an artificial Christmas tree so this makes it smell like we have a real one in the house.

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A friend gave me this cute snowmen the other day which holds tea lights.  I kind of have started a new collection of snowmen.  I didn’t mean to, but I seem to have several now, just like my Santa Claus collection.  When people find out you like something, you start getting that something quite often whether planned or not. I love this new little snowman and he will be decorating my house for Christmases to come.

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Found this little Nativity set I purchased several years ago and set it up.

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I can put this one out and know it can’t be broken. My Jim Shore Nativity had an accident one year and one of the donkey’s ears was broken off which a certain grandson hid under the couch and I found it there later.   David repaired the ear and that nativity is placed up high where, hopefully, it can’t be broken.

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Made potato and sausage soup and it was soooo good.  Think we will have it for leftovers tonight.

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Baked snickerdoodles and it wasn’t long before this happened…..

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A hand stole in to take one.  These did not last long.  I made three dozen sugar cookies Saturday and they are all gone, but it was because I gave them to our grandchildren to take home.  I think I ate one of them.

I have to tell you about a cleaning solution I saw on Facebook.  I tried it and I was amazed at how well it worked.  Here is the recipe:

2 oz. of Dawn liquid (1/4 cup)

4 oz. lemon juice(1/2 cup)

8 oz. white vinegar( 1 cup)

10 oz water(1 and 1/4 cups)

Put in a glass jar and shake it up.  I use a canning jar and canning lids.

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This was two batches and I already had used some for cleaning.

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I have these blue Ball jars I plan to store it in.

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I guess you could use another dish washing liquid other than Dawn, but then you wouldn’t have this pretty blue cleaner.  I have used it on cabinets, floors, the refrigerator and a toaster that was really greasy and I had tried to clean it with just soap and water.  This is what it looked like after a cleaning with this.

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It was sparkling, although I do see a few places I need to apply the cleaner again.  You can clean your oven, walls, windows, just about anything.  It is a little soapy, but I spray it on, let it set, wipe it off with a clean cloth and it seems to work well.  It smells fresh, too and is safe around animals and children.   Anyway, if you don’t like harsh cleaners, this is one you might want to try.  I give no guarantees, just that I had success with it.

In closing I will show you how hard it is to take pictures of your grandchildren all at the same time.

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Notice our granddaughter never moved, but stayed posed, while the boys were up to their usual shenanigans.

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Four more days and another group will gather at our house for another day of fellowship and fun.  Hope your days are merry and bright.  XOXO  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

All Is Merry and Bright

The weeks after Thanksgiving seem to go in a blur for me.  I’m making, baking, creating, sewing, quilting, decorating, and doing all the other things I do during the days before Christmas.   Also, when grandchildren and their Christmas programs are added to the mix, it makes for a very busy time. 

This week we had two programs to attend.  Our granddaughter sang in her Christmas choral concert.  Really put us in the spirit of the season. 

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She is getting prettier every day.  So proud of her.  She is using the talents God gave her.

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  Their school is Christ centered which is really what the season is all about.  It’s nice to attend a school program where Jesus is welcome.  Too many schools don’t even want to use the word Christmas any longer which is really sad. 

  On the home front, decorations have gone up. 

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The little ceramic tree I was given one year by someone I babysat for.

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We put the tree in the dining room because honestly, it was the only room it would fit. 

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I love our Christmas tree. 

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I even like its reflection in the window!

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Our neighbor down the street has a huge tree with lights.  I can see it out my kitchen window.

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Lights on the front porch.  David put them up and half of them didn’t work any longer, so he had to take them down and buy new ones.  They just don’t make things like they use to.  Those light sets didn’t last a year.  Hoping these sets last a little longer. 

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I am doing a lot of sewing, but since I cannot show you what I am making at the moment, I will show you a purse I made for myself recently.  I love this pattern.  I have made so many purses from it, given some away and kept some for myself.    Can’t wait to show you what I have been sewing for presents. 

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I have been knitting, but not these things.  I made the sweaters and little socks years ago for my baby boys who are now in their forties.  I had forgotten I ever knit socks.  I have been following a blog that teaches how to knit socks and after Christmas I am going to try to knit on circular needles for the very first time and make a pair of socks.  I have been lusting over skeins of sock yarn online.  There are so many luscious colors from which to choose.  People have been posting their sock progress on Facebook which makes me want to start immediately.   I can see a new obsession taking hold.

Last night we attended another Christmas program put on by the fourth graders at my grandson’s school 

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It was a Christmas western show.  All the children wore plaid shirts and kerchiefs on their necks.  They looked so cute.  My grandson is the red head boy in the front.  He and the other two boys had major parts in the play.

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Here they are sitting around the campfire.   Why does Spin and Marty come to my mind?  You folks who grew up in the fifties in the states and watched the Mickey Mouse Club know who I am talking about.

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Suddenly, angels appear in the sky. You know, the shepherds in the field keeping watch over their flocks by night.  When suddenly the heavenly host appeared singing “Glory to God in the Highest and on Earth, good will toward men.”

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  They went looking for the baby who had been born. 

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Carrying his sheep all the way!

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During one song, our grandson played the drum. He was good too.

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I love this boy.  He’s growing up way too fast.

I hope your days before Christmas are busy, happy and blessed.  Bye.

 

Threads of Time

Okay, does it seem like Christmas was ages ago?  We had our final family gathering last Saturday.  I never get tired of seeing my grandchildren.  It hit me, though, how quickly they are all growing and soon will be adults.  So any time I can spend with them is golden for me and David and I hope we can do it more this year.

I always like to take pictures when we are together although sometimes I forget because we are having fun.  But this time I took several pictures of the boys.  My granddaughter was home feeling poorly so she wasn’t with us.  Taking pictures of boys is like trying to herd cats.  You can’t get them to hold still or smile.  Here are a few pictures that I took.

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Here they are with their Enderman and Creeper from Mindcraft.  I learned more than I ever needed to know about Mindcraft while researching how to make toys for the boys.  I’m still not sure I understand it, but they knew exactly what they were when they opened the packages so I breathed a sigh of relief.

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Boys in motion.

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I like this picture.  Rather elfin looking I think.  I knitted all the younger boys scarves and hats.

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Eating the new sweatshirt I just gave him.

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This young man is thirteen and wears size twelve shoes.  Or, as he told me, he can wear eight and a half shoes also.  Huh?!  Just know his foot is about twice as long as mine.  And he is still growing.  He’s on the basketball team.  His grandfather on his mother’s side played a lot of basketball and he is following in his footsteps.

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My lovely daughter with her oldest.   We had a grand time and I look forward to seeing them all again.  My younger grandsons are already asking me when Grandma’s camp is going to be.  We want to take them caving this summer.

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If you live in the northern states you know we are being hit by Artic air right now.  I almost got frostbite this morning cleaning out the chicken house and feeding them.  I keep candles burning because it just makes me feel warmer.

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I brought my sewing indoors as the dogs have taken over my shop for the duration of this cold.

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I am getting ready to quilt this quilt.  It’s kingsize and I’m not sure whether I will hand quilt it or do it on the sewing machine.  I think it’s called Granny Squares.  I pieced it a year or so ago and am just getting ready to finish it.

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It’s been a nice quilt to use up my bits and pieces of fabric.  Since I have quite a stash, I could make several more of these.

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Each block has a different color scheme.

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This will be the backing.  We sold this when we had our quilt shop.  I have loved it ever since and wanted to use it in something I will keep.

This week I had the joy of teaching a friend and her two cute daughters how to piece a block and learn some quilt basics.  They decided to make pot holders.  After a lot of cutting, sewing, tearing out a couple of times and sewing again, they almost finished them except for a border or two.

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It brought back memories when I use to teach quilt classes at our store.  It is so rewarding to see someone who does not know about quilting learn about it and find out it’s fun.  Their pot holders show their individuality. Pam picked Christmas fabric to match some new dishes she received.

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Tiffany picked bold, floral fabrics that made a beautiful pot holder.

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Danielle picked homespun fabrics and I really liked how her pot holder turned out.

It was fun and made me want to teach classes again.  See behind Danielle?  Molly and Belle watched us continuously.  This was usually their naptime and didn’t know why I wasn’t letting them into the shop.

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I got this cute mug Saturday.  My grandchildren and their mom and stepdad went to Cleveland where the Christmas Story house is.

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I love this mug.  It holds about two cups of coffee…………

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or hot chocolate.  If you are in the freezer this week, stay warm, drink hot chocolate and enjoy your indoor time.  This, too, will pass.  Bye.

 

 

 

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

It is, you know.  The most wonderful time of the year.  The season of giving and peace and love.  Oh,  you look around the world and see all the evil that is going on, but what you don’t see very often because it doesn’t make a good news story, is the good that is going on.  The nurse in the hospital who gives a lonely patient a little extra time and patience, the boy on your street who helps his elderly neighbor clear the snow off her walk,  the man who pays the tab for a soldier eating at the next table in a restaurant,  a teen-ager who calls his grandma and asks about her day.  There is a lot of bad, but if you look, you will see the good also.  There will always be sin in this world.  Jesus said there would be wars and rumors of wars.

We can all make this world a little bit better.  It’s the small things that count.  A smile, patience for that slow driver in front of you, a kind word, a pat on the back, a hug.  What if everyone decided that they were not going to be the problem, but the answer?  That we would all decide we would get along with our neighbor, that we would look on the bright side of things for a change, that your life really isn’t so bad if you can get up in the morning and do something for others.  It’s time to stop being so self-centered.  To stop wondering when things are going to get better.  You can make them better.

I decided quite a long time ago that I was not going to look at the glass half empty.  My glass is always half full.  If I don’t feel well one day I think I am no better than anyone else and cannot escape the trials of man and accept it.  I have lived through tragedies, sadness, pain, separation, and most of the other human ills.  We all must face these things at some time in our lives.  It is how you face them that counts.  I know people who have the most awful diseases who wear a smile on their faces in their adversity.  There is one thing they have.  They have Jesus in their heart.  It makes a difference, you know.  At this season rest in the knowledge that God loved us all enough that He came down to earth as a tiny baby and lived among us for a time.  He died a wretched death on the cross and took every one of our sins upon Himself.  He died but He arose the third day and now lives in heaven.  One day He will come back for those who believe in Him.  I believe.  He makes my life complete.

I love Christmas because I can give presents to friends and family.  I love making gifts and this year I went all out.  I can’t show most of what I have made, but I have already given some things away so those I will show.

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I made felt ice skates for the children in my Sunday school class and filled them with candy and little toys and stickers.

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I have a friend who loves cats so I made her this little ornament out of felt.

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The lady I help in Sunday school got this because I told her she was an angel.

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Another friend keeps bees so, voila!  When I found this pattern I immediately thought of her.

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I was on a roll and made another ornament.  I may make more before I’m done.  I love working with felt.

I’ve been knitting up a storm too.

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Hats and scarves for the children in my Sunday school class.

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A year or so ago, a nice lady from my church gave me a big bagful of quilt blocks, embroidery floss, a whole quilt that she had cross stitched and several other goodies.  She said she gave it to me because she knew I would get some good out of it since I love to quilt.  There were enough of these school house blocks to make a full size quilt  So, I did.  I asked her who had made the blocks and she told me her grandmother.  I knew I could not keep this quilt for myself.  It belonged in her family so this Sunday I gave it to her.  It made me so happy to see her smile.  The quilt was probably started in the 1950’s and now sixty some years later it is finished and the family can enjoy it for years to come.

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I think my brothers had pajamas made from material like this back in the day.

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There were plaid blocks.

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One block was made with a satin or crepe de chine.  Is that spelled right?

Yes, I have been a busy beaver.  And I have enjoyed every bit of the making.

In other news.  Molly Marshmallow continues to grow and grow.

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Doesn’t she look adorable here?  Wellllllll.  This dog loves wood.  She chews on wood every chance she gets.  She has chewed on our house, around the windows, the wooden deck benches.  She goes out in the yard and drags up pieces of wood and chips them like a beaver all over our back deck.  She climbs on top of the woodpile, I don’t know why.  Maybe she is planning on working her way down it.  Anyway, today I took hot sauce and a brush and painted it all over the back of our house.  Molly immediately started licking it up.  Finally she decided maybe it wasn’t so good.  I am going to hot sauce everything I don’t want her to chew.  She loves chewing the heels of my shoes as I walk so on will go the hot sauce.  I hope I have found the remedy to her constant chewing.  It’s not like she doesn’t get toys and rawhide bones to chew.  I just hope she outgrows this affinity for wood and me.  I still love her, though and get a lot of laughs from her antics.  If you walk by me and I smell like hot sauce, you will know why.

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I look at this face and I cannot stay angry with her.  She is a puppy and chewing is what puppies do.

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My Santa rests on the couch before the big day.  He’s been asked at the store for stickers and other toys.  Little children think he’s the real thing.

A big package came to our front door the other day.  David and I had gone to a Christmas party and when we came home there was this box sitting on our front porch.

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It was for me!!!!!!

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Do not open until Christmas.  Oh, no!  I feel like a kid again waiting for the big day.

I knew it had to be from someone I knew who knew I liked chickens because this was on the package……

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A rooster made out of what looks like an old quilt.  Interesting.  Hmmmmmmm.  Well, I guess I will just have to wait until Christmas until I can open it.

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Couldn’t let Christmas go by without dressing up one of the hens for the season. This is Ada and she’s the only one who will allow me to pick her up now.  She got a little squirrely toward the end of the photo shoot and finally flew out of my arms, but David got a good picture of her.

 

Must go.  Just four more days.  Hope you are ready.  It will come whether you are ready or not.  See you on the other side.  Merry Christmas.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

How to Bathe a Baby

Today I will give you instructions on how to bathe a baby. It’s really very easy.

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First you get the shampoo, a towel and a bowl for rinsing.  A Cool Whip bowl is the best to use.  It reminds you of delicious desserts you ate while you are bathing the baby.

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Oh, did I neglect to tell you the baby was a puppy?  Yes, Molly is getting her first bath.  We didn’t bathe our other two dogs when they were pups and therefore it is impossible to bathe them now. It is dangerous to even try.  So, Molly will get regular baths so she won’t be afraid when she gets too big to handle.   First you get the puppy wet.  Keep the water and shampoo away from her eyes.  This also works with human babies.

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Then with very rapid motions you put shampoo on the puppy and rub it all over her until she is a bubbly little furball.

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Continuing to wash the puppy until your hands almost disappear, you get her nice and clean.  So far the puppy does not know what is happening to her.  She only tried climbing out of the tub once.  But, as you can see, I can move fast and kept her in.

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Then you gently rinse the puppy under the faucet because it is faster that way and gets the soap off her really well.

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By this time the puppy is resigned to the fact she is going to have to endure this just a little longer.

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Then you take a clean towel and begin drying her.  She loves this and makes moaning sounds as I rub her.

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Here she is.  A nice clean puppy who smells like baby powder.  Or as David says, “She smells like a baby’s butt.”   Then you sniff her for about a half hour and rub her dry and think how adorable she is.

Molly has made herself right at home here at the Craig house.

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She sleeps among the shoes.

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She and I both slept on the couch the other day.

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She sleeps with the chickens.  See the black Australorp?  She cosied as close as she felt safe by Molly and laid there for a while.  I am trying to get both chickens and puppy used to each other so Molly won’t want to eat them later.

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The chickens were very curious about her, but didn’t allow her near.

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She sleeps with Bonnie.  I’m rethinking that extension cord right there where she can reach it.  She hasn’t found it yet, but I’m not taking any chances. I have puppy proofed my shop as well as I can, but I am sure she will find something I never thought of to chew one day.

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Yes, she sleeps a lot and I have a hundred or so pictures of her doing so.  I just can’t resist.

Lest you think all I have done since we got Molly is watch her, play with her and walk her, I have done other things.

I picked our first pumpkin out of our garden this week.

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This is one of twelve or thirteen we have seen in the garden.  This is one of the small ones.

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I tea dyed some lace for a project and hung it out to dry in the wind.

I also finished my Christmas sheep quilt top.  I really love it and can’t wait to show it to you.  I finished knitting another hat.  I finished a book and began another.  I did laundry.  I started a new quilt.  I fed and watered the chickens.  I gathered eggs.  I went to church.  I took a walk.  I baked an apple crunch and a rhubarb crunch, both of which have been eaten in a matter of days.  I would say I dusted the house, but I would be lying.  I cleaned up after the pup.  My shop floor looks like I have a real baby with all the toys scattered all over.  I cooked lasagna.  I baked a chocolate chip applesauce cake that I forgot to put vanilla in, but it still tastes pretty good. I made three trips to the vet with three dogs.  I had to hold Bonnie down while they trimmed her nails.   I sat in the air condition because it has been so hot and humid.  I would rather be outside, but I am getting a lot of hand quilting done on a quilt that I hope to have finished next week.  I did a few other things, but the pup has had a lot of my attention this week.

Here’s to bathing babies(human or canine.)  Bye.

 

 

A Short, But Busy Month

February, the month of love.  It’s a short month, but so much seems to be packed into each and every day.  The days are getting longer.   Thoughts of gardening and flowers and the warm sun on my back as I work outside are on my mind.

I planted some tomato seeds this week.  Each day I check on them to see if the seedlings are coming up.  The promise of juicy, red tomatoes in our future makes me happy.

The chooks are laying fewer eggs right now, but we still cannot keep up with them.  Egg salad sandwiches have become a staple at our table.   I never tire of egg salad and it’s so easy to make and almost free.

We have had some crazy weather this month.  We have had so much snow this year.

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We go from this and then a few days of sun and then snow again.  It is suppose to snow tomorrow again.

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We have frosted dogs looking in our windows.  Doesn’t Belle look like she has been sprinkled with powdered sugar?   She is telling me here that it is time for her to go into my warm shop.  I think the dogs have forgotten they have an insulated dog house in the back yard.  They refuse to go back there. But that’s okay. I like them in the shop with me while I sew and craft.

Speaking of crafting, I have made several needle cases in the past few weeks and this in one I made this week.

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I liked making it so much, I made two.

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You see, I have this bag of luscious wool felts that are calling to me to make something.  I have it in my head that I would like to try hat making.   Wouldn’t any of these felts make a pretty hat?   I watch Downton Abbey and see the beautiful hats the ladies wear and I wish women would wear hats like that again.  I wore a hat to church a few weeks ago and then I saw another woman wearing a hat the next week.  We women need to start a revolution and start wearing hats again and getting dressed up when we go out in public.  I am so tired of seeing people in their pajamas when I go shopping.

My mother always wanted us to look our best when we went out in public.  In those days, girls would wear those huge rollers in their hair and go out in public and my mother thought it was TERRIBLE.  My mother taught me to take pride in myself when I went out.  If I don’t have nice clothes and lipstick on, I don’t think I should be seen by anyone.  I like to dress up.  Always have.

Anyway, I would like to make a hat or two or three if I can find out how to make them.  I’ll look online where I find out how to do everything else.

I have been knitting like crazy.  In the past few weeks I have made three hats, one turban and a scarf.  I am working on another turban and another hat.  I had forgotten how much I love to knit.  Only problem is, when I am knitting, I am not quilting.

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I am training for a 5K race/walk in May.  Actually I walk a 5K several times a week when the weather is nice.  I walked one day before yesterday.  There use to be Volksmarches here in our city and my daughter or my husband and I would walk them and get medals when we were through.  I am really looking forward to the walk in May.  It sounds like it will be fun.  It’s called Color Blaze and they tell you to wear white.  I don’t know if they spray you with color or what, but they do something to make everyone colorful.  We shall see.

We celebrated the Beatles’ fifty year reunion.  Well, Paul and Ringo.  The show was kind of sad for me as I remember how it was when they first came on the scene.

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Here they all are with Ed Sullivan.  We need another Ed Sullivan to find good talent again.  He brought the Beatles to the United States.

Now I have to say something about Shirley Temple who passed away this week.  When I was growing up, her movies were on television all the time.  Wee Willie Winkie,  The Little Colonel(one of my favorites) Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm and Heidi.  Who can forget when Heidi was being taken to the gypsies by her evil aunt and her grandfather running through the snowy streets trying to find her?   Who can forget Shirley’s sweet voice singing “Animal Crackers in My Soup,” “When I Grow Up,” “Try a Little Happiness?”  Her movies just made you happy.  They were wholesome and fun.  And her dancing.  When she danced up and down the staircase with Bill “Bojangles” tapping each step.  Captain January where she lived in the lighthouse with two old codgers.  I could go on and on.

Shirley was a big part of my life.  I still watch her movies when they are on, but sadly, they aren’t on very often. I know I can watch them on the computer, but it’s not the same.  I wish some movie theater would show them on the big screen.  I would pay to go see them.

Thank you, Shirley, for making us so happy.  For being a lady at all times.  For having class in a sometimes classless society.  For bringing joy to so many around the world.  We love you and you will be missed, but I am sure you are exactly where you should be now.  God Bless.  Bye.

 

Juggling

Right now I feel like a juggler, juggling several different things at once.  And it’s all my fault.  No one makes me do these things.

I am a creative person loving to sew, quilt, knit, embroider and do just about any handwork.  My problem is I love to start something, but I don’t always get it done.  Right now I can say  I have at least ten quilts that need to be completed.  Probably more.  One I just have a very little bit of quilting to do and it just sits there waiting on me.  Making me feel guilty.

Then there is the knitting.  I just started knitting after years of not knitting a thing.  Suddenly I am in love with yarn and the working with the two needles row upon row as a hat or a scarf takes shape.  This week I have made three children’s hats and a scarf.   I want to start another hat.  I’m thinking these hats would be nice to put in Christmas boxes for Samaritan’s Purse. I only knit at night right before I go to bed, but the problem is I don’t want to go to bed until I get a hat done.  I can knit one in an evening.  They’re small.

Then I decided I needed to make a couple of new ironing board covers.  That entails making almost a twin size quilt and cutting it down to size to fit the ironing board.  I almost have one done.  I don’t waste any time when I get an idea in my head.

Then I went to a fabric store last week with some friends and got an armload of felts and decided I needed to make needle holders right away.  Today I cut out two, plus a scissor holder.  They will be so cute, I think, if I get them done. Lots of handwork on these.  I will show them to you when I get them finished.  They are not the hand needle holders I made last week and showed you.    I bet you are wondering what I am going to do with all these needle holders.  I have a plan.

Now I am on a roll and want to get a Christmas quilt completed before gardening time gets here.  I almost have the quilt top finished.

Today it suddenly hit me I have way too many things going at once and need to finish a few and tidy things up a bit before Spring.  Plus I have been neglecting the pups and the chicks.  They demand my attention and I have given them very little in the past couple of weeks.  And I need to get to the beauty shop and get my hair cut or it is going to be to my waist before I know it.  Plus my “true” color is showing and I can’t have that.  But every time I think I will make an appointment,  we get another big snow and I don’t want to get out in it.

I need to plant tomatoes now.  Before we know it, we will be in garden planting season and last year my tomatoes were late getting out.  I had cherry tomatoes clear up to frost last year, but so many of them were wasted that way so this year I hope to get them out earlier.  The chooks really cleaned out the old garden and even flattened the compost pile so I won’t have much cleaning up of the garden before we till it.  I am amazed what good little dirt turners they are.  They have scratched up every inch of the garden area.  That is why you don’t let chickens into your garden when something is growing there.

I am sounding rather hyper here, aren’t I?  I said a while ago I have never been bored.  Now I see why.  I am where I think a boring day might be nice.  A long day of nothing. Maybe just me, a hot bath and a good book.  Sounds pretty wonderful.    But that isn’t going to happen for a while. Next week I start a new Bible study for six weeks.  Since it is going to be at my house this time I am going to have to do some cleaning.  And some baking.

Our Sunday school class is going to a dinner theater and I am so excited about that.  I love plays and musicals and things like that.  This is a special one for Valentine’s Day.

My chooks are doing well in this bitter, cold weather.  It doesn’t seem to affect them much.  We do have a heat lamp on in the sub zero temps.  They are still  laying from three to five eggs a day. I still have to give eggs away because we cannot eat them fast enough.   I notice someone is molting because I see a lot of loose feathers when I clean their coop. And it sure isn’t me!

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Finished my granddaughter’s book.  I find myself excited about reading the next one to see what is going to happen next to her main characters.  She is a really good writer.  As she matures I see her writing more and more and getting the public’s attention.  Her book is geared toward middle school aged children, but she used some big words I had to look up.

Another snow is expected this weekend.  Feed the birds.  They can’t find food under the snow.  I have the fattest birds and squirrels around because they are always feasting.  The squirrels just look at me when I go out to fill the feeder and just keep on munching.  I guess by now they know I don’t eat squirrel.

Here’s to sewing, quilting, knitting, reading and never being bored.  Bye.

Wonderful Winter Week in Weview

I have to tell you something about this blog before you read it.  There is a picture that keeps showing up that I cannot get removed.  My husband tried also, but it is a ghost picture that refuses to be removed so when it crops up at the most inappropriate times, just ignore it.  Just think of it as the crazy uncle who came to dinner and never wanted to leave.  Okay, so here goes………

Even though it has been bitterly cold and even though it hurt to go outside for very long and even though you’d get frostbit if you spent much time outdoors, it was a pretty wonderful week.

I look back and see all the things I did and got done and I think it was a very productive week also.

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Every year about this time I get the urge to knit something.  I got some yarn last week and began two projects.

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This yarn is so yummy, but I can’t tell you what I am making because it will be a gift one day.  It has a wonderful texture and is knitting up so prettily.

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I have had this pattern for a turban for too many years and decided to try making it.  All it is is knit 3, purl 3 on one row and purl 3, knit 3 on the next until it gets to be about twenty inches long.  Sew the ends together. Then I doubled it together and this is how it looks:

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It is toasty warm and easy to get on and off.  In fact, I found myself wearing it all day when it was really cold to keep my head warm.

 

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Here’s another view of it.  Yes, I need a haircut and color, but I haven’t wanted to get out to the beauty shop.  Maybe this month I will change my look completely again.

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I baked eight little loaves of bread that was very good.  Sorry, it’s all gone now.

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Because it was so cold and the labs were in the shop keeping warm, I moved the shop into the house.  I was working on several projects here.  Despite the fact I have three quilts I want to make for Christmas presents this year, I keep finding all these little projects taking my time.  But they are so much fun.

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A pile of churn dash quilt blocks will become a new ironing board cover soon.

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Because I now have all my pins and needles separated, I now have to have something to keep my needles in so I made these cute hand needle holders.

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DSC_0408  This is what they look like when they are closed.

Because cabin fever was setting in, some friends and I and David decided to take a day out.  We drove to Indianapolis to see this sight first.

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DSC_0408 A beautiful ice tree that some people had made in their back yard.   They just used twigs and water from hoses with water from a pond on their property and began making this.  It’s been a very good year for ice trees and this year it is very big and so beautiful.  Their family has been doing it for years, evidently, but this is the first year I had ever heard of it.  My friends didn’t know where we were going when we were driving there.  They thought we were going to a quilt shop and thought we were taking a very strange route.

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Isn’t it a gorgeous sight?  The ice tree is pretty nice too!

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I think it’s worth the drive if anyone wants to see it.  The family just enjoys the smiles it puts on people’s faces and we loved it.

We did manage to get to a couple of quilt shops.  I had found one I had never heard of before on the internet called Crimson Tate.  It’s a wonderful quilt shop full of the most luscious fabric you would ever want to see.  I had seen some fabric on their website that I was hoping they still had that I am going to use in a quilt and they still had it.  Dance a jig.

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Rows of these gorgeous fabrics.  I wanted them all.

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There was a wall of Love Indiana pillows.  Aren’t they cute?  I didn’t ask if they had a pattern for them. but they probably do.  They had so many cute patterns and if you like to sew clothes they have some dress patterns that are just darling.

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Everywhere you looked there was something pretty or cute to see.  Wouldn’t this be a cute quilt for a baby?  Have I used the word cute enough?

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There was this wonderful antique button display case(not for sale) as my husband quickly learned, but he sure liked it.  The owner of the shop was showing him some of her buttons.  Nice to have someone entertain your husband while you shop for fabric.  He likes to go into quilt shops since we use to own one and see what other shop owners are doing.

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This is Heather, the owner.  A really sweet and nice person.  Visit her shop. It’s at 845 Massachusetts Avenue in Indianapolis.  You will love it and she didn’t even have to pay me to say this.  It’s true.  It was a fun day.  We ate at Chick-fil-A one of my favorite fast food places that we don’t have in our town so I don’t get it very often.  Then we went to the Back Door quilt shop where I got a whole armload of felt to make things(I don’t know what, yet, but I like to always have felt on hand when the creative ideas start to come.)

Here’s to quilt shops, ice trees and good friends to share them with.  Bye.