Sunday, December 28, 2014

week-end musings

In case you're wondering, I made it through Christmas.  The Christmas eve service at church was really nice, the music being the highlight for me.  Christmas day got to talk to my Mom which was a nice gift.  Spent most the day in my PJs.  Went to see the Hobbit at the movie theater.  Had a couple meltdowns.  It was very quiet and I did miss having family around.  But, I survived.  

I worked half days Friday and Saturday so the boys, George and I just chilled out in the afternoons.  I knit and listened to podcasts or books on CD.  Rocky got a new toy for Christmas and it's his new favorite.  He has been attacking it, carrying it everywhere, and then snuggling it on the couch.  

 Joey can be found napping anywhere, anytime.
 And then there's George.  She is sort of pesky this feline of mine.  She has to be right in the middle of whatever I'm doing.  She will even lay on top of my hand on the mouse!  I guess that means she loves me :)
 So, remember the giraffe pattern I told you about?  Here's what I've got so far:
It's pretty cute even without a nose or mouth yet.  I gave him blue eyes.  I have one leg finished as far as appendages go.

As I'm sure everyone is this time of year, I've been mulling about resolutions.  Not sure if I'm going to make any true resolutions since I don't really keep them anyway!  I definitely want to knit more socks.  And try to make a sweater.  I have a couple quilt tops that I need to finish and then quilt.  Yes, and lose weight.  Uggg fat is my nemesis.

So, I just edited this post to add some fabric pics!  Because the other thing going on around here is laundry.  I just took this load out of the dryer, isn't it lovely?  I am definitely a pre-washer for fabric.   

Anyhow, as I was folding this bunch of lovely, I was thinking about my resolutions that I wrote about above.  And the quilt tops I need to finish up.  and bam! just like that as I was folding this yellow bee fabric it hit me that this would be perfect in my rainy day quilt!  And the gray little piggy fat quarter might too.  I love when that happens.  Just going about normal life stuff and ideas happen :)  Next weekend, it might be all about sewing and quilting!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas

I started a new knitting project last night.  I've been wanting to start this for awhile but was looking for the right yarn.  I settled on this Encore Colorspun which is an acrylic and wool blend in nice baby colors.  One of the ladies at work is pregnant and due in January.  I missed her baby shower so I thought I'd knit this cute giraffe as a gift!  It's funny because I don't think anyone expects me to hand-make gifts, but I put that pressure on myself.  For two ladies in the office I had made quilts so in my head I thought I should do that.  But, I don't know her that well.....and I've wanted to make this two birds one stone, yes?
She already knows she's having a boy, and I really wanted a self striping yarn and dang is that hard to find!  The pattern calls for worsted weight, most baby yarns are DK or fingering.  And the cute ones were mostly the girl colorways.  But this is a nice sherbetty color.  I don't think you can see too well right now but it is making kinda blobby stripes, which I like.

So it's Christmas eve - Merry Christmas!  It is, of course, very quiet here.  I had high hopes for snow but so far it's just been rain.  This afternoon though the temp has drastically dropped, so maybe?  

This morning as I was getting ready for work I got a text from Karla that there was a gift on my porch!!!!  What a sweet surprise!  It is a basket stuffed with lots of goodies!  She's such a little elf.  And when I got home from work there was a card from a lady at church.  

Welp, I'm off to knit some more, just wanted to pop on here and wish everyone a Merry Christmas!  

Saturday, December 20, 2014

O Christmas tree....

Well, I changed my mind rather suddenly today and bought a Christmas tree.  I was not even thinking about it.  I was going to the grocery store and somehow found myself at Michael's craft store and then looking for a tree.  They only had 3 left in the store that were all 7 feet and I didn't want that big of one yet.  So, on autopilot I drove across the street to Joann's and asked where the trees are and the girl said she thought they were all gone.  She said earlier they were down to two.  So, I thought that's that.  But tucked in a corner with label hidden I found the very last tree!!!!  It's small, just 4 feet so it fits on a table top nicely.  It is pre-lit with white lights but I like the colorful ones so I just strung up lights I already have. 
And then went looking for my ornaments.  Our ornaments.  

I had sort of forgotten what I would find in the ornament box.  I have quite a few Hallmark ornaments that are dated and special.  Lots of little ballerinas, mini snowflake ballerinas.  Fishing ornaments, a flying duck, a truck for Scott.  And, towards the bottom were the personalized ones.  Oh.  I can't explain how thankful I have these!  Yes, I cried.  And then was thankful and happy to have the memories.
This cute reindeer one is dated 1999 which would have been while Scott was in Korea and I was waiting for him in Tennessee.  His mom, Sue, for a few years sent us personalized ornaments.  And with a name like mine, I loved them extra special because I have never found my name on anything personalized in a store!  Bahahaha!

This little cutie says "Our first Christmas together" and funny thing is that it's dated 1997 which was technically our second Christmas together!  This was the Christmas right before we got married.  I also found the glass pickle ornament that I bought in Gatlinburg, TN.  So many memories.  

And, I have to say I really like the way it looks all decorated and lit up.  It's rather cheery.


This little Christmas mouse is watching the rain fall this morning.  I think he's hoping for snow :)

Friday, December 19, 2014

it's the piggies fault

I visited my Mom last weekend in Chico.  And she gave me gift cards to the quilt fabric store and yarn store.  And, I may have spent well over the gift card amounts both places and at a few others as well!!!!  Tee. hee.  But it was great fun!  Wanna see?

So, it doesn't look like much in the bag but it is stuffed full of 1/2 yard cuts. And yarn.

The quilt store was super fun, especially with Mom who was happy to share the fun with me!  So, I took a slow lap around the store seeing what collections they had before I started grabbing bolts.  There was a display table next to the cutting table and there was a fat quarter bundle of this Heather Ross print of piggies!  Oh those piggies just crack me up!  There are 3 colorways of pigs and then  coordinating prints.

And once I decided I had to have the piggies it was like I want this and this and this and and and.......
I've seen almost all of these prints online and have admired them on other people's blogs and in quilts. Which I know I should not covet but we don't have a quilt shop here that stocks anything close to such cute stuff.  The gal in the store was also fun, I'd pick something up and she'd be like "oh I didn't see that, that's cute.  Is there another one?"  I can tell I would not be able to work there unless I just worked for fabric!
After that we drove over to Heartstrings which is a cute little yarn shop.  They have a great selection of yarn and needles.  Since I had kind of gone way overboard at the fabric store I was quite restrained at the yarn shop.  I went in planning to buy circular needles so that I can attempt to do two at a time socks.  I also found some nice sock yarns to try.  The middle yarn was actually in the gift bag from my Mom that she found at a thrift store!  It's Opal yarn which I've been wanting to try as I've heard it's nice and holds up well.  I really like the colorway.
One of the places I love to go shopping at in Chico is the library!  The library has a book sale on Saturday mornings in the conference room.  The entire room is full of long tables covered in boxes FULL of books.  I used to go specifically to look for books on tape for Scott.  He had a love of books on tape or cd so I'd go there and scoop up some great deals!  It became something I liked as well so now I just like to go check it out.  I came away with a shopping bag full of books and one book on cd, which I think is a success.

Saturday night I met my best friend Jeannette to watch a Christmas music light show, which was really nice, fun and free!  

I have to say it was a really nice trip.  I grew up in Chico but have never wanted to move back "home".  Mostly because it never felt like home to me.  Usually when I visit I'm annoyed at the people and the traffic and the weather and and and.  This time though it was just nice to see Mom, we had fun shopping, and see Jeannette.  It was nice to get home to my puppy dogs who were sooooo happy for me to pick them up from the vet's office where I board them.

So Christmas is right around the corner!  I didn't end up putting up a tree.  I guess at this late in the game I won't.  Maybe I'll knit and sew up some ornaments and shoot for next year.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Happy mail!  Two sparkly glittery cards and herdy stitch markers from across the pond :)

Thursday, December 11, 2014

I made it through my birthday

Just want to give a small update.  I made it through my birthday with no meltdowns!  The layer of sadness was there but I kept it together.  My Mom and Brother called to check on me, which was sweet.  I also had messages from Scott's family which I think I will always be surprised by - in a good way!  I am thankful that they still consider me part of their family.

And, Jan brought me a balloon!  I love balloons.  Flowers, yes, I love too.  Cake, eh.  But balloons?  Oh yeah!

I also wrote a bit in my journal which I haven't done for reals in months.  It felt good.  So begins my new year.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

time just passes

My husband was 11 months and 26 days older than me.  Our birthdays are 5 days apart.  So, I'd have my birthday, and for 5 days we'd be the same age and then he'd have his and be a year older again.  He died when he was 37 and I 36.  The day after his angelversary, 4-5-14, I became officially older and the time has kept going.  And tomorrow I will be noticeably older than him by the number of years.  I will be 38.  

I have surpassed his amount of years.  I don't know how to put into words how odd and sad this makes me.  Unless you've experienced this I don't think you can understand.  I know that everyone just wants me to be thankful for what I had and grateful for what I do have.  And I am, I AM.  But, I have also always been a thinker, an overthinker mostly.  

And the other thing is that he brought magic to my life.  He was the adventure and fun.  There were so many things I didn't notice or care about before he came along and then for 17 years I had fun and magic and him.  Then suddenly I didn't.  I am exceedingly thankful that he introduced me to the things he did.  But, the contrast of what I have now is stark.  It would be like living in an environment of overgrown jungle and warmth and then being dropped into a cold desert.  Can you picture the difference?  

So, yes, I am thankful to be alive.  Tomorrow begins my personal new year.  God willing, I will wake up 38 years old.  I just will always wish he was still alive.  I will always check voicemail for his yearly birthday song singing message.  I will crave his touch and dream of his laughter.  I will be thankful that I knew those things so dearly.

As I've said previously, December is hard for me.  Monday will be his birthday and I will wish somehow to wake up and he will still be here.  My mind mostly knows he's gone but part of it and all of my heart still hope it's just the worst dream.  The best gift is that I knew him for 17 years.  I had his love and it still warms me.  

Sunday, December 7, 2014

a little rusty with the crochet skills

I have a FO (finished object) to share and it's actually crochet!  First off, let me just say that I tried a new coffee blend today!  It's Starbuck's holiday blend for 2014.  I'm so used to drinking french roast by now that I'm not sure if I like it?  But, you know, add enough sugar cookie creamer and it tastes just fine!
So, I don't remember how long ago - not long though - like 2-3 weeks ago, Jan asked if I would make a pair of boot cuffs for her to give to her daughter for Christmas.  I think at the time I was still working on the grey Jul hat, so I said it would have to wait but I would start at the beginning of December to make sure I'd get them done in time.  And dang if December didn't just sneak right up! ha.  Yesterday I realized I'd better get busy if I was going to be serious about this project.  I snooped around Ravelry for free patterns and found a couple.  

Now, me being me I would want something with a little frill or ruffle.  I came across this pattern called Scalloped Boot Cuff and I thought it was cute!  It is a crochet pattern, very easy and quick!  So, I'm not the fastest crocheter ever so I had read other projects that people had made and they were like "finished in an hour!" "two cuffs made during a movie!" and that sort of thing.  Yeah.  Let's see, I watched a 2+ hour podcast and then 2 movies last night and 2 podcasts this morning and finished.   To be fair, I did have to rip back a couple times because my stitch count would either diminish or multiply in spots.  Teee Heee.  Knitting makes more sense to me than crochet, what can I say?

But!  the finished product is cute!  So, I stuck one of them on my paper towel roll so you could see it in "action".  I plan on making a pair in off white/cream, this is my test knit - but I think these would look cute peeking out the top of some boots.   I also bought a cream color yarn that has a bit of sparkle that I might make for myself :)

Update on other knitting projects: I am about to start the heel on my Dumbledore Hermione socks.  I was getting nervous that I might be developing second sock syndrome, but this week felt the urge to pick them back up!  After that is done I am feeling like I want to knit another little animal - maybe a Bakery Bear or Gelatto Giraffe, which are both patterns by Kay Jones who is one half of the Bakery Bears podcast, which I love.  Before I start that though, I feel I should finish up the sweater I started for my little fox - it is winter after all I don't want him to get cold!

Ummm.  So, that's pretty much it here.  It's 48 degrees out and foggy and gloomy so I will no doubt spend the rest of the day either knitting or maybe sewing?  What are you up to???

Monday, December 1, 2014

December snow dust

It is December 1st and I woke up to snow this morning!  As you can see, it's not very much, just a frosting really.  But what does it mean???  Will it be a white Christmas?