Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Finishing Things

Today I finished an afghan that I never started.  Weird huh?  Not really.  A little over a year ago one of my very good friends passed away. Brenda and I shared a love of crochet along with a lot of other loves.  When she passed, her husband gave me all of her yarn and hooks.  As I was organizing the totes of yarn, I found several unfinished projects.  The first one was the snowman blanket.  I finished that and gave it to her husband for Christmas the first Christmas after she died.

Many of these tiny granny squares were complete, but I finished the squares, pieced them together and put a border on the afghan.

Around the same time I found some larger pink and mauve squares.  They weren't something I would ever do, but they were something Brenda must have thought were interesting.  I set them aside and worked on other things.  But last week, I pulled out those squares again.  There were ten of them.  So I took nine of them and made a small throw.  With the odd square, I made a small pillow.  The light in the picture isn't great, this is in our guest room that we call the study.  But it gives you the idea.  I didn't have matching yarn, but I found some complimentary yarn and put a granny border around the throw and a granny back on the pillow.

Like I said, I didn't have the actual colors in the squares.  So I used a sage green to put the squares together and then used it again in the granny border.  I found a darker mauve to use for the border too. It works to make the throw look a little more complete.  Well, Penguin likes it anyway.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Say Yes! Yes!

Last night I finished this shawl.  It's the Yes Yes shawl from Caron.  You can find the pattern here.

At first I really needed to stick to the pattern.  But after row thirteen it's a four-row repeat.  It was easy to memorize the repeat and work without a pattern after that.

 One of the things I really like about this pattern is that it has a little texture.  One row of every repeat has a front post double crochet.  So that creates a little texture on each of the little fans.  

I used a sportweight acryllic, but this shawl would be beautiful in any weight or material.  It will definitely need blocking if you are using a natural fiber, however.

In the winter, I love having a shawl to wear as I would wear a scarf, this shawl would be perfect for that.  But I also love the open work for this time of year.  Spring in Central Pennsylvania can bet pretty cool.  The Yes, Yes shawl is great for a cool spring evening.

I did work a few more repeats than called for in the pattern and I finished the edge with single crochets.  Other than that, I just followed the pattern.  I'm happy with how it turned out.  What do you think?

Monday, March 31, 2014

Opening Day Baby!

It's opening day!  It's opening Day!  The Big Dog and I love baseball.  We watch the Phillies' games whenever we can.  So, we love that first sign of spring affectionately known as opening day.  When he was at his previous job, Big Dog would take the day off of work and we would eat hot dogs and cracker jack with the boys and watch the game if it was televised.  Today, Big Dog's working, so we watch alone.

Whenever I'm watching baseball, I'm usually working on a knit or crochet project.  I even take a project along with me to the stadium when we watch our local AA team.  So I was really excited when my friend Karen told me about a blog post she read about creating a conceptual afghan from the wins and losses of your favorite team.  If you want to read all about it, click here.

I couldn't wait to tell my family about my idea for this project!  Do you ever have one of those projects that just lights you up?  You can't wait to start it.  The endorphins are flowing.  It's just fun!  Well, this is how I feel about making a afghan based on the Phillies' wins and losses this year.

We discussed it as a family and chose red for home wins, white for home losses, blue for away wins, and grey for away losses.  A trip to the yarn shop and I'm ready to go.  So as I type this, I'm watching the game and worried about what color I will cast on and knit first.  The plan is to cast on 150 with size 10.5 needles. I may alter that if it doesn't seem to be wide enough.

I'll keep you posted?  Have any of you ever done any conceptual knitting?

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Snow Day!

Two days ago we had a lovely snowstorm that iced every limb with heavy white snow.  It was beautiful.  

We made the most of the day by starting our mystery puzzle, "A is for Arson."  We also made snow cream.  It's an easy recipe, basically it's just a big bowl of fresh ice cream and you mix in a can of sweetened condensed milk.  And it's very yummy with some chocolate sauce swirled on the top.  

It was one of those great winter days where we snuggled in a warm living room and watched the snow fall.  To top of a nearly perfect day, I found a pattern here for these tiny hearts.  I whipped up 3 in no time.  I can see myself making a whole bunch of these!  

What do you do on snow days?

Monday, December 16, 2013

A book for advent

This is one of our favorite Christmas stories. Big Mac read it as his reading book a few years ago and we were in love. With seven chapters, it's a great Advent read for the seven lessons days right before Christmas. We're starting today. 

Friday, December 13, 2013

Green Tomato Jam

What do you do with all those leftover green tomatoes?  You make jam, obviously!

Green Tomato Jam
4 C. ground green tomatoes
4 C. sugar
1 large box raspberry jello.

Mix ground tomatoes (you just need to wash them and grind them in your food processor), and sugar in a large stock pot.  Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes.  Stir in jello and mix thoroughly.  Pack into hot sterilized jars and seal.  Boil in a waterbath for 15 more minutes.  It tastes and has the texture of raspberry jam.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

More Art

A few months ago I shared with you the Art of my mother, Jacqueline E. Shank.  She signs all her paintings, "Jackie."  Well, on our trip to North and South Carolina, we saw a painting that didn't make the book at my Aunt and Uncle's house in Charleston, SC.  Want to see it?

This was in the room in which I slept.  Pretty cool huh?