Monday, August 31, 2009

Asymmetrical Waves Revealed!

Now, in the Coats & Clark booklet Ripple Effect: 13 contemporary knit and crochet ripple throws, my Asymetrical Waves throw in Red Heart Soft yarn. I imagine it will be available on this page eventually, but I don't see it there this morning.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Instead of Twittering....

Maybe I should just Tweet here on my blog? Anyway, if I were to Tweet right now, I'd say:

My microwave is so clean right now, I want to leave the door open so I can look at it all day.

Is that less than 140 characters? LOL.


At least 2 reveals are coming this week! It feels like it has been a long time!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

If I ever get back to knitting....

I think this might be a pattern I can see myself trying... really big needles, not much shaping... I might actually be able to do this one.... check it out, Cinnamon, designed by Sarah Hatton

Or maybe this one, although the yarn isn't fat, so it could take considerably longer.... Sleeveless V-neck pullover...

Although, I still am smitten with Stefanie Japel's sleeveless turtleneck from Fitted Knits ... and I already own the book...although it is probably way beyond my skill level.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Doris Chan's Killer Brownies

yum. I made Doris' legendary brownies. Here's a photo of Chief about to dive into them. Did I say, 'yum' already? Here's the link to her free recipe. Just ignore all that nonsense about how it only serves one (if you're Ellen). Because, I have been known to share...when I'm in a good mood, which I was when I made these brownies.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Jonas Brothers concert

Here's Chickee and Captain at the Jonas Brother's concert last Sunday. Chickee came home with all (and I mean ALL) the details. They had a great time. Also, the kids had a great first day of school yesterday and I got a good amount of work done! Happy, happy. This is going to work out great!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

First Day....

of work in earnest! Today is the first day of school. Chief is now in 1st grade and Chickee in 3rd. Last year, Chief was in half-day kindergarten, so this year is the first year they are both gone ALL DAY. If I wasn't so busy, I could be sad about my babies growing up so fast. As it is, I'm excited about making major progress on my book and other deadlines. Look how foggy it was this morning! I brought my flashlight out to help the bus driver see us better. Chief was having a few goldfish.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

lucky Chief and book progress

Chief with the newest of his 30 or so 4-leaf clovers of the summer. I just shipped off the first box of many to the publisher! WooHoo! It's really going to happen. It's starting to feel real. At least 12 more boxes to go! Haley asked, 'how many book sneak peeks are we going to see?' I don't know Haley, somewhere between 10 and 60. Lol.

Monday, August 24, 2009


What a balancing act! I'm still struggling to achieve balance. Taking care of the kids has to be the number 1 priority. Everything after that is a jumble. The house, projects, the book... figuring out what to do when is really hard. What can wait? What can't? Show me a person with a spotless house and I'll show you a woman who's house is her hobby. I'm so blessed to be busy! Today, I am surrounded by project bags that include: at least 3 accessories and at least 3 blankets and more than 50 swatches of various things. Crossing things off my to-do list one at a time. That's all I can do. It's good enough. I used to think I was a perfectionist, now I know that I'm more of a "do my best" kinda gal.

Friday, August 21, 2009

CGOA blog

The CGOA has a blog! Here it is! Go check it out. Also, you can now follow CGOA on Twitter!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Chickee knits

I taught Chickee to knit about a year ago. She has taken to it much more easily than crochet. However, I taught her to crochet at 5. Now she is much older, has better dexterity and she seems to enjoy it more. She only knows the knit stitch. She is making a garter stitch scarf. She occasionally increases a st on accident. I'm not sure how to help her stop doing this, so instead I taught her how to k2tog so she can compensate, but it doesn't really prevent her from adding stitches. I'm really proud of her commitment to the scarf, she has about 10" now. Charlie likes that seat on the couch most of all, so he was willing to share it with her rather than not get to sit there at all. I think he was asking her, "when are you going to get up?"

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Crochet Rocks!

Chief and I share a love of pretty rocks. I don't know why they charm me, but I really like them. These are a handful that Chief bought at the Lexington Children's Museum. At Dollywood there was a huge variety of pretty rocks for sale ranging in price from $.30 to $400. or more. There is something timeless and steady about rocks, even these delightfully frivolous polished ones. Do you like rocks too? Margaret Oomen has a pattern for "Lacy River Rocks" in the new issue of Crochet Today. In the past, I have also seen Gwen Blakely Kinsler dapple in the practice of crocheting adornments for rocks. Here's Gwen's Ravelry page for her Mossy Zen Rock Garden, which was published in Kooky Crochet in 2007.

I have a T-shirt that is black with white script and it says, "Crochet Rocks". Some might say, "Why would you crochet a rock?" Apparently Gwen and Margaret would say, "why not?".

Crochet Rocks!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Mistakes new designers make

I might lose some followers after today's post. I have noticed some things that new designers do (that I have observed over the past year) that shoots herself in the foot and hinders her reputation in the field. I'm not singling anyone out, matter of fact I have seen these mistakes by more than one new designer.

The moment you say that you are designing your own creations, when people read your blog or visit your facebook or flikr, people will assume that all images you show are your designs. Therefor, if you make a crocheted project from someone else's design, please give credit to the designer so that it does not appear that you are claiming the design as your own.

Also, if you use a photograph that you did not take, you should give credit or a link to who it belongs to. Photos are copyrighted too, although, I admit, in this internet world, people can steal photos easily and it may not feel like a big deal, but if you want others to respect your creative work, then you need to have a habit of respecting others' creative work. Editors will recognize their publication's photographs when they stumble upon them.

Ok, the last one. If you attend either a free or for fee crochet or knitting class. The instructor may hand out notes as part of the class. Usually somewhere on the notes will be a note about the instructor's copyright. Please do not distribute the teacher's notes to others. The teacher makes her income on the classes. If it is a free class, the teacher is still building upon her reputation on the class, which adds to her income. If a person who is not at the class, reads the notes, becomes confused and is unable to benefit from the teacher's explanation on the topic, the reader may have an unfavorable opinion of the teacher. Even if the teacher is offering the class for free, she may decide to offer the class for a fee later, or if others get the notes, they may decide not to take her class in the future. They already have the information, right?

Thank you for letting me vent. I admit, I'm not really "up" for a debate on this issue. I will publish your dissenting opinions as comments (if stated politely) but I'm not going to argue.

Monday, August 17, 2009

End Weaving and Sneak Peek

Hi All, Here is a rather dramatic photo of the back side of a project where you can see the end woven in. I use a Chibi yarn needle, I weave the needle through the bottom of some stitches in one direction, I then, thread the needle and pull the end through. Then I repeat this by bringing the tail up a round (I could have just as easily gone down a round) and weaving the needle in the opposite direction. Then I cut the leftover yarn. This takes about 3" of tail. Generally, it is always best to weave the yarn end into the same color. But sometimes it is not possible. I could have woven the blue end through the chs of the blue round, but I was afraid of how that might make it more bulky. When weaving it through a different color, it is important that you then flip it over and make sure that it doesn't show on the front side of the project. This could have been done a little more discreetly by weaving it through the first and second round of yellow. here I have it through the 2nd and third round or so.

Notice I put a link to my "Gallery" on the right side bar.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Book Progress

Today, I'm doing the first draft of the Introduction... da da da dum.... (dramatic music). My heart's beating really fast. I'm either excited or I've had too much caffeine in the form of chocolate. Cookies for breakfast can't be any worse than a dough-nut, right? Don't worry, I made eggs and toast for the kids.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Book progress

Today, drum roll please.... I am writing the Table of Contents.

can I post a video?

Do you know what this means? If I can post a video, and I can get Chickee to hold the camera steady, I might be able to post crochet video clips! How cool is that? Poor Chief had to be the Guinea pig of the video experiment. This is his 2nd ever swim race. That's Chickee in the foreground encouraging him on. Chief is the one (obviously) with the green goggles.

Welcome new followers! We're up to 80! I never would have guessed that we would get up to 80. Thank you.

Friday, August 14, 2009


"When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece." John Ruskin.

I love that, expect a masterpiece he says. Wow. Isn't that confident?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Boy's Vest Revealed...again

Sometimes I write posts ahead of time and then forget about them... here's this one again... haha. Imagine how forgetful I'm going to be in my older age! Here's the sneak peek again....
And here's Chief modeling the finished project. He couldn't decide between the football buttons and the safari animal buttons. Typical for a 6 year old boy, still a little guy, but growing so fast! The football ones fit the holes better. This pattern comes in sizes 2 (4, 6, 8). Chief is modeling the size 6. He was not a very cooperative model, I have to say. You should have seen the photos that I discarded.... oh, ok, I'll show you one. Look at this grumpy face!He looks like he's practicing for a Calvin Klein Ad for something deep and brooding. We could call this one "Preoccupation" or "Un-cooperation!". Or he could be a Ralph Lauren ad where they never smile but look so serious all the time as if they are pondering life's major problems. It's in the new issue of Crochet Today Sept/Oct 2009.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Book Sneak Peek

First, yesterday's model who wore the Super Speedy Shrug in the CGOA 2009 Fashion Show was Kimberly K. McAlindin. Thank you Kimberly, and thank you Kim Guzman for letting me know.

Here's a book sneak peek for you! I'm so excited. I don't know if I can wait a WHOLE YEAR! before I can share these patterns with you. I hope you like them. Time (a long time) will tell.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

CGOA 2009 Fashion Show

The Super Speedy Shrug was in the CGOA 2009 Fashion Show in Buffalo, NY this past weekend. The lovely and talented Jill Hanratty captured this photo of the model wearing my shrug. I'm sorry, I don't know who the model is, if you know, please comment so that I can tell her thank you! The Super Speedy Shrug pattern is now for sale on the right side bar of this blog page and also on Ravelry.

Monday, August 10, 2009

More Crochet in summer tips

Yesterday I was using a wool/cotton blend yarn. I didn't find it to get sticky as long as I kept my hands cool and dry. I used an aluminum hook with a clay handle, which seemed to work well. I can always wash off the clay handle if necessary. It didn't get too hot in my hand like bare aluminum might have.

As Sara commented, she's right, you can't crochet by the pool if you have little ones. This is the first year I have really been able to crochet with the kids at the pool. I can crochet and look up frequently. I still don't feel comfortable reading by the pool if I need to watch the kids at the same time.

Anyone else have "crochet by the pool" tricks to share? I'd love to hear them!


What you see here is a play-doh volcano, after the minor eruption of vinegar and baking soda. Just a little diversion for the kids while I work. Here's my desk:I actually crocheted at the pool yesterday and I think I learned a few tips about crocheting in hot weather:

bring small/portable projects
Have a large bottle of ice water handy, not only to drink to stay cool, but to rinse and cool off your hands.
Keep a clean towel handy for just your hands
Get in the pool periodically to cool off
Hold your project to the side rather than resting on your body.
Sit in the shade if possible so that your arms, reaching across your body, don't leave a white mark where the sun didn't hit...
oh, yeah, wear sunscreen, even if you don't wanna...

Friday, August 7, 2009

add to the list....

crochet a new bed for Charlie... he seems to have outgrown this one...

When I finish the book...

I'm going to:

Get a manicure
Get a massage
Bake a cake (and eat it)
organize all the family photos
knit something, anything.
I'm sure the list will grow longer....

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Sneak Peek

Can you see that I just discovered the text effects button on my Photoshop? Pretty snazzy, huh?

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


Ok, I don't know who chooses the monthly book selections for our County Public Library, but I will no longer follow blindly your recommendations. A couple of the last few books were good. But this last selection of The Somnambulist by Jonathon Barnes negated all other good recommendations because of it's awfulness. I guess it was better than the last awful book (that I chose off the shelf, from the Librarian's Choice section) Mr. Muo's Travelling Couch.
That book was so bad that I didn't even get past the 2nd chapter before I returned it. The Somnambulist, I at least finished, though I regretted the loss of the last few weeks of my life reading it. I need to stop feeling guilty about quitting a book early. Oh, I guess I should tell you what it was about? It is about a detective/magician in Victorian London times who is in search of a murderer. Along the way, he encounters a variety of stereo-typic carnival people with various unusual physical characteristics. His partner is the Somnambulist who is one such person with unusual physical qualities.

Miss Julia Stands her Ground. by Ann B. Ross. What a strange transition from The Somnambulist to Miss Julia. Miss Julia, apparently is the lead character in a series of books by Ann B. Ross. True to the traditions of the South, Miss Julia has a strict moral and ethical code that is challenged by her circumstances. So prudish and uptight, you would think that Miss Julia would be annoying... ok, she is a little. But she is also endearing and a champion of those people she has brought into her family. Basically, she found out that her late husband had an affair which resulted in a child. She takes the woman and the child into her home. The book begins a few years later when she hears rumors of further indiscretions by this woman whom she has chosen to trust. Not high literature, but entertaining, and a refreshing 180 from the previous book I read.

Up Next: Eleven on Top by Janet Evanovich

Tomorrow, hopefully, another sneak peek.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Sneak Peek

Sneak Peek! I love being able to offer sneak peeks. Happy Tuesday everyone.

Monday, August 3, 2009

His Best Vest Revealed

Here's the sneak peek again...
And here it is on Chief! In the new issue of Crochet Today is the "His Best Vest" design using Red heart Designer Sport yarn. This vest is a great introduction to garment shaping. It's easy and small to try. The bottom hem is curved (increasing) then the "V" neck has decreasing all in a V-stitch. You have plenty of time to make this little vest in time for back to school or school photos. Make it in school colors. This vest has cute little football buttons. I had a hard time choosing either the football buttons or safari animals or baseballs. Personalize it so that he will love to wear it! Follow the link below for more info.
His Best Vest