Monday, March 31, 2014

fun packages

This was my week for packages!!!!  Fun packages :)  Tuesday night I came home to a box from my Mom FULL of fabric!  I didn't get any pictures because it was too dark and I put the fabric directly in the washer for pre-wash.  It was a nice surprise.  There were two really big pieces that she got a good bargain on.  One is a cream back round with roses that is flannel.  I'm not sure yet but probably a good quilt back.

Saturday morning I worked at the office and when I came home there was a big box on my porch taped shut.  No labeling on it so I knew it wasn't from the mailman.  My first thought was I hope it's not a bomb!  Silly. Then I remembered my friend Savannah had said she had sewing stuff from her Grandma (I think) that she was going to send down with her sister in law for me.  This box was chock full!  All kinds of stuff!  Fabric, buttons, tons of little hand sewing needles, bobbins, thread, you name it.
There are two sewing baskets.  I really like this bigger one that opens like a picnic basket.

Here is the smaller basket.  I asked Savannah today what kind of sewing she did because there are so many little hand sewing needles.  She said quilting and applique.  I can't imagine!  Such patience and work.
Here's a picture of these two little pin cushions that are so cute!  I don't know if I'll use them or not but they are so cute!
 If you could use any little hand sewing needles or those little threads let me know and I could pass them on.  

Sunday, March 30, 2014

knitted bunny improv

Okay, let's talk knitting for a bit.  We know I love to knit up bunnies!  There's that.  On my desk at work I have my first two knitted bunnies.  A lady I work with asked me last year (!) if I would knit a bunny for her niece's birthday in April.  I tried to dodge it.  Because of course then it's like, how do you put a price on one of these bunnies???  They do take hours to make, so even if I put like minimum wage price on the time it's out of the range anyone would pay for a toy!  You know?  But.  I eventually said I would.  Cue March 2014 (how did that sneak up?) and I realized that I better get busy knitting!  A few years ago I bought this pattern, Mother Bunny, from etsy.  I've used it a ton of times.

This time, though, I made major modifications to the body.  The pattern is written to make the body starting with the legs but on two needles knit flat and then joined to the body also knit flat.  I wanted the body to be all ONE piece, knit in the round.  So, I improvised.  Since this is basically knitted amigurumi, I just did like I would with crochet.  Start with 6 cast on stitches, join in the round and divide stitches between 3 double point needles.  Increase the next row each stitch to make 12 total stitches.  Then the next row increase evenly around to get up to the 17 stitches in the pattern.  Once one leg is as long as I wanted I put the stitches on "hold" on waste yarn.  Once both legs are done I divided the total stitches onto 4 double points and joined the main body color.  

Here's where I had to put my thinking cap on.  How to add arms?  As soon as I got the body as long as I wanted, I then just made a hole kinda.  Basically you just focus on one side of the body at a time.  I was working with 4 needles which means that 2 for the front and 2 for the back.  So, I knit across 2 needles, turned the work before going to the next 2 needles, and purled the next row across.  Knit row, purl row till I had 4 rows.  I left those stitches there and moved the working yarn across the little divide and did the same thing for the other 2 needles.  This created a "V" opening at each side.  I put the stitches from the needles on 2 separate pieces of waste yarn to save for later.

You can check my ravelry for more pictures, my rav name is colimachia.  Along the V I picked up stitches, I wanted 12 total, so I picked up 4 stitches along each side of the edge.  For the top of the arm I cast on 4 stitches and then joined that with the picked up stitches to make a circle with 3 needles.  Knit as long as I wanted, changed colors and then started decreasing down to 6 stitches, then thread the yarn through a needle and pull tight.

For the neck/shoulders I had put the stitches on "hold" on waste yarn.  Now, once the arms were done, I came back to them and picked them back up on needles, adding the stitches along the top of the arm.  I also picked up a few extra to ensure no holes :)  Now I'm back to 4 needles and I think like 43 stitches?  It doesn't really matter because I wanted to make sure I had no little holes.  For the next couple rows I just started decreasing evenly around till I got back to 34 stitches.  Usually I don't decreased the entire amount in one round.  So, like I decrease 2 stitches per needle on one round.  Next round same thing and so on.
Then, refer back to the actual pattern which started decreasing down to half I think?  I don't remember.  Anyway you get down to not many stitches (grin) and then you just thread a needle through the stitches and pull tight!  

I did the head exactly as the pattern, which is worked on two needles and is kind of a pain.  But the end result is so cute!  So it's worth it.
She wanted floppy ears, which the pattern does not have.  Again I improvised.  Most ears in patterns are knit in garter stitch which looks super bumpy and I don't think goes very well with the rest of the bunny.  So I stockinette and then sew felt along the inside for stability so the edges don't roll in.  If anyone really wants the ear pattern I made just message me and I can share it.  I just feel like I'm super rambling right now and who really wants to read all about that?  LOL  unless you're trying to actually make the bunny then who cares, right?  

Bottom line, I really, really love this little ballerina bun!  When I first put in her eyes she looked kinda mean.  I reworked the face a few times until I got her to look friendly.  Then, once the ears were on she looked like she was excited to dance!

Sunday, March 16, 2014


 I love how painting my toes with green and then iridescent just makes me happy :) Sorry, I don't have super pretty feet!  If that bothers you then scroll on down, sister. LOL

Saturday, March 15, 2014

grab bag

Maybe a couple months ago I went to check out my favorite thrift store and there was a note on the door that they were in the process of moving and wouldn't be open until the end of February.  So last weekend I thought I'd check the new place out.  It's in an old furniture store so there is lots more square footage.  I ended up with one grab bag of fabric, some remnants for super cheap and some larger pieces.  

Hard to tell in this picture but the far left is little strawberries :) The blue and far right were in the grab bag.  It's a thicker cotton, almost canvas-y sort of feel to it.  I really like the blue. In this pic the one on the left is about 2 or so yards and it's a nice quilting cotton.  The red is like the thicker cotton in the above picture, I just really like the print.

 Okay, so this set of pics is my favorite two.  The left is a super, super light pink with little objects printed white so a little hard to make out in the picture.  It's got little kitchy items, a church, a duck in water, a milk maid, heart, some flowers, leaping kitten.  It was super cheap like .75 cents for almost 2 yards!

The one on the right reminds me of Liberty London tana lawn betsy print.  I know it's not the same put similar.  Best part?  There are 3 pieces that are like 1/3 yard each $1 and liberty london is going for like $27 a yard!  Who can afford that?  NOT ME but it sure is pretty.
 Here is a little close up of that light pink.  I just really like it.  Sometimes you see something and it's just like "yeah", you know?
So it's been really springy the last few days, very sunny.  Still brisk but warmer.  My tulips are all up but no buds yet.  Daffodils are up and a few buds but no fleurs as of yet.  I love tulips and daffodils, and this year I think I'll put in some irises.  When I was a little girl I would take off the tops of the tightly wound irises and use them like chalk on the sidewalk, I could usually draw a lot with them before they'd crumble or run out of color :)

Thursday, March 6, 2014

what if he's watching?

In the widow world some like to say that "he's always with you, where ever you are". To some this may be a comfort.  At first, when Scott died I wanted to feel his presence.  I did have a few very real dreams that I waffle back and forth on whether or not I think it was really him.  I know there is a spiritual world that we don't see but I just don't know if deceased loved ones become a part of that when they pass.

Sometimes I think about what he would think if he was with me, could see me, hear me.  In some situations I feel that I should apologize to him if he were to witness something silly or gross.  Like, who wants to think that their spiritual love might see them in the bathroom?  Gross.  So then is it picky choosy?  He's just there when I need him or when I am upset or need to talk?  That doesn't fit to me either.

Tonight if he were to be here watching I think he'd be so sad.  And knowing Scott, knowing that he hated to be the cause of suffering to the ones he loved - that would be more like hell to him.  To watch me cry so hard that I am sick and gagging.  Uncontrollable sobs.  Pain.  Then exhaustion.  No, I wouldn't want him with me then, him watching helplessly as I suffer because he is gone.

April 4th is fast approaching.  I have a wedding to go to next weekend that I wouldn't miss but also don't know how I'm going to make it through without a break down.  But, as always I feel that I have to keep going.  My best friend's father in law is dying.  It breaks me for her to be so near a loved ones death again when she's had more than her share.  It also brings that heartbreak bubbling back to the surface for myself.  Oh, Pain, when did we become such good friends?

I have little flashbacks to the early times that I don't remember quite so well.  Like the phone call that confirmed he was dead.  The dream state I was in for the funeral.  Feeling like I could NOT walk in to my husband's funeral.  That it couldn't be for our family, for my husband.  No.  My legs betraying me walking forward when I wanted to collapse in a heap.  No one would have blamed me I don't think.  I still can't remember if Taps was played or not?  I remember being handed the flag and being saluted and thanked for his service.  The feeling of people watching me, the curiosity of some, of the pity, the raw emotion.

I did make an appointment with a counselor.  I am NOT looking forward to it.  It may or may not be helpful but either way I am very nervous.  I don't want to tell my story again.  To explain everything...all over...again.  It's a long story and I don't know if she's going to know how to help me.  Sure, people are trained to deal with grief.  My story is complicated.  

Sunday, March 2, 2014

coffee drip

This guy today.  I look over and he's such a big chunk of brown dog!  I love him so much :)
So!  Today I am drinking the most perfect cuppa joe and trying to plan my day.  I've done one load of laundry and after one more then I need to make more laundry soap.  I also need (!) to go grocery shopping.  Which I'm dreading because I am the worst at just grabbing random whatever and then getting home and realizing I have nothing I originally wanted.  uggggg so I overspend.  BUT! I am putting myself on a real, grown up budget starting this month.  To be honest I've already blown it but am going to at least try to stick to a list at the store.  I guess what I'm saying is I will also be making a shopping list today :)  I made some good progress on the new quilt yesterday, at least 8-10 new squares so I will be working more on that, especially since its another gloomy overcast day.  And the big decision is do I go to church?  Right now I think yes.  My friend Sherry's church starts at 11:15 or 30 so it's kind of the perfect time for me.

A little blip about emotions.  We're at 11 months already, time is marching steadily on to a year April 4th.  I am dreading it.  Super dread, y'all.  I feel like it just happened yesterday.  I don't remember and I do and it's when I do that I panic.  Yesterday I went to the cemetery, as I do.  I know I sound crazy - but just don't you even worry about it.  But I was talking to him about how I need to wean myself off of trying to go there every week.  It's an hour and 15 minute drive to get there for one.  Gas for two.  Flowers three.  and on and on of reasons.  He would tell me I need to save "dough", that was his term.  But, in just talking it out I came to the conclusion that I'm still just looking for him anywhere I can.  I've realized he's not anywhere I'll see him - I no longer cry when I see a tall man in the store, I no longer cry when I see a truck similar to his, I've been to the old house, he's not there.  So, besides the coast and the cemetery where I know there are at least a part of his ashes, I know he's no where.  And I can't handle that.  I don't know how to reconcile his absence.  For 17 years we discussed everything and nothing.  How do I go from having that someone, my best friend, my love - to nothing?  

So I guess that's where I'm at.  Feeling melancholy and but also content about some things.  I am panicking more as the year mark approaches.  I miss him so much and my heart just hurts.  I look for hearts everywhere.  This was my coffee drip on Friday.  Heart shaped coffee drip.   Scott loved coffee and me, how appropriate.