"Properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit, and it doesn't hurt the untroubled spirit either." ~ Elizabeth Zimmerman

7/13/18

Update (Humming Star Trek Theme)

Making progress on the Mini Star Trek project.



I've stitched the top words in metallic gold. Trying to decided if I want to outline it in black or not.

Speaking of stitching in metallic, I did a bit of googling to see if I could find some helpful tips on doing just that. Metallic threads have been so difficult for me to work with. I found a fantastic one that is so helpful it literally has solved all the problems I've had with it. This really works! I wish I'd known this a decade or two ago.

3. Say goodbye to fraying, slipping and tangling:
Use the slip knot method to thread the needle.
This method is fool proof: Your thread will be locked onto your needle and there’s absolutely no risk of fraying.
Use the slip knot method to thread the needle thread will be locked onto your needle theres no extra thread left after the eye of the needle
Lock your floss onto your needle to eliminate any risk of fraying

If you’re using two strands, cut a single strand, double the length. Fold in two. Thread as indicated above. Pull out about an inch and a half. Slip the tip of the needle through the loop formed by the thread and pull needle out. Tighten the knot so it forms a tiny knot at the end of the needle.
This looks like it might prevent your needle pulling through the fabric but it really does work with most fabrics (with the exception of fine counts and tightly woven fabrics).


I found this plus some other tips on Creative Poppy Patterns. Pop over and visit it.

I've been knitting too. I've finished the body and one sleeve of the baby cardigan I'm working on. It's coming out nicely, though I've not taken any photos of it yet. 

On Wednesday my daughter and I went into our woods and dug up a young 4 ft tall Ocean Spray plant and planted it in the yard. It turned out to be a very tough job. In fact, we ended up getting Sweet Hubby to help us because the digging was so difficult. Our soil is very rocky (Thanks to ancient glaciers) and also chock full of roots from all the Snow Berry bushes, trees, etc. It took two hours to get the job done. I've been wanting one of these bushes in the yard for several years, so I'm happy. I took a picture, but it's hard to see with all the greenery behind it. I've put in an arrow pointing at the one flower bunch on the bush. Here's hoping it survives the transplant.



We started out trying to find a baby plant. I thought I'd found one about 8 inches high, dug it up, and on the way back to the house ran across a young wild apple tree. The leaves looked exactly alike, so then I wasn't so sure I had an Ocean Spray. Decided to chuck it and go get a larger bush. 

I think I mentioned a few weeks ago I sprained my knee. Well, it's been giving me a lot of grief, so yesterday I went and saw a doctor about it. I will be getting some physical therapy, and she gave me a prescription for an anti-inflammatory cream to help with the pain. She doesn't think I've actually torn anything, which makes me feel much better about it.

We're going camping this weekend. Trying out a campground on the north fork of the Coeur d'Alene river that we've not stayed in before. It's been very hot this past week and will be for quite some time, so I'm looking forward to cooling off in the river.

Live long and prosper. \\//

7/5/18

Dogwood and Hummingbirds

Washed, blocked, and framed. It's officially done! It's even hung on the wall. Only took 12 years to do.



The name of the pattern is Dogwood and Hummingbirds by Canadian northwest artist Sue Coleman. I love it.

To those who want to say "But Dogwood only has 4 petals (bracts)." This is Pacific Dogwood which can have 4, 5, or 6 bracts, all on the same tree. This is the Dogwood I grew up with. It grows wild on the Pacific coast and is, in my opinion, the most beautiful of all the Dogwoods.

Live long and prosper. \\//

7/4/18

Happy 4th of July!



"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”




Live long and prosper. \\//

7/1/18

WIPs

So, lets start July with a post about my current WIPs.

I've finished the knitting on layette set 31. Just have the little things to do. Buttons, pompom, blocking, etc.



I've been working on the crochet edging for the matching blanket.



I've started the cardigan for Layette set 32. Using a new pattern, just for fun.



I've made a little progress on the felt stocking. It has a teddy bear on it now.



I've also started a new long term cross stitch project. I dug around in my stash and found this kit by Eva Rosenstand.



Just a little done so far. It's going to be a challenge. There are no large blocks of color in this one. Lots of color changing ahead.



My sprained knee is healing slowly. I feel like I've had it for months, but it's only been just over 2 weeks. The most frustrating thing about it for me is that I can't sleep on my side. It's just too painful. If I sleep on my back, though, with a pillow under my leg, there's no pain, except in my back. Not being able to sleep on my side has given me a bad case of insomnia. I'm getting a lot of reading done, though. I'm just burning through the books. I've read 6 novels in just 2 weeks. I started reading Hunger Games a couple nights ago and I'm almost done with it already.

Our weather this weekend is cool and overcast. We did get a little rain yesterday while I attended a local rally in Coeur d'Alene and I got wet. I was there with a small group to help people register to vote while a protest rally for ending the separation of immigrant children from their parents coming to the U.S. for asylum was going on. It was an interesting event. There were quite a few people there, a few interesting speakers, and we helped a few folks register to vote. There was a potluck afterwards and the food was very good.

I got bad news from Barnes and Noble. They are no longer supporting the model of Nook I just happen to own. I have the original e-ink model. I love reading books on it. It's super easy on my eyes because I'm not looking at a screen made of led lights. I made sure all my books are downloaded on it before June 26, which is the last day they were supporting it. I've pretty much read all the books, so no big deal there, but I won't be able to download any new ones. I guess I'm going to have to switch to a Kindle Paperwhite if I want to have a supported e-ink reader. Right now I'm using my Samsung tablet with the Kindle app, which has a regular led screen on it. My eyes get pretty tired reading it, but it's better than nothing.

Live long and prosper. \\//

6/14/18

Oh My Goodness!

Dogwood and Hummingbird. I've finished it! Only took 2 days. Why didn't I finish it months ago?



I got frustrated with it when I started doing the back stitching on the back of one of the Hummingbirds. It was so confusing to stitch because the lines are diagonal across the squares and the back stitch thread is barely a different color than the stitches I had to stitch over. I had a hard time seeing them. I had a terrible time keeping straight which ones I'd done. I decided to put it away for awhile. Ended up being 2 years!



Last week I joined a couple Cross Stitch groups on Facebook and got inspired to finish it. I looked at the pattern again and figured out a way to stitch it without getting lost or confused. It feels so good to get it done. Now I just need to wash it, block it, mount it, and frame it. I should be able to enter this one in the fair this year. Huzzah!

I've also done a bit on the applique Christmas stocking.



I'm enjoying it immensely.

Yesterday, bad back and knees regardless, I took on the task of weeding the front flower bed. My daughter Ruth helped. I am so thankful she did because if she hadn't it would have been a huge job for me. With her help, we got it done in just a couple hours.



This morning my sprained knee hurt quite a bit more than it did the day before because of the yard work I'd done, but I think I'll be okay. I was expecting the backs of my thighs to hurt a lot, but they don't. Yay! The front yard is looking pretty good now. Tomorrow I plan to do a little work with the weed trimmer. Then it will be done. Maintenance from that point should be easy if I keep up with it.

We've had such nice weather all this week. They're predicting rain on Saturday. I'll be glad to get it. It gives me an excuse to put off the yard work in the back yard for a day. I could use the rest.

Well, I need to get dinner started.

Live long and prosper. \\//

6/9/18

Mini Star Trek Progress

This is where I'm at on the Mini Star Trek cross stitch project.



All the characters are done. I'm about half done with the names of the characters. Now I have to figure out what I'm going to do for a border and I want to put something at the top. Perhaps the words "to boldly go" or something like that, and a little Enterprise ship somewhere.

After a week of gorgeous weather, we are having a rainy day, which I am enjoying immensely. The cleaned gutter is working perfectly. There is no more waterfall coming down in front of the back door. It was worth the effort.

The knee is healing. I have been able to sleep in my bed the past 2 nights, fairly comfortably too, for the first time since spraining my knee. I have enjoyed the sleep so much, and I think getting sleep is helping the knee heal faster. I've got times during the day with no pain. I'm also getting some energy back.

I've come to terms with sweet hubby going back to school. It could end up being a very good thing, for him especially. Acceptance can be a good thing. I will adapt.

Live long and prosper. \\//

6/6/18

Layette Set #30.

I have made 30 layette sets since I started making them for KnitWits. What's really amazing is that I haven't tired of them yet. Usually I can't stand making the same thing over and over again. This is the 4th set for the year.



I can get 2 blankets from one yard of fleece because it's 60 inches wide. I found this yarn in my stash after purchasing the fabric. I am so pleased with it.

The cardigan.



Pattern: Super Natural Stripes by Fawn Pea

Size: 0-6 months

Yarn: Premier Yarns Everyday Soft Worsted Prints by Deborah Norville
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Red Rocks

Yarn: Caron Simply Soft
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Autumn Red

Needles: Circular size 7

Started: May 22, 2018
Finished: May 27, 2018

Comments: I love how this yarn knit up. The striping is awesome. 

A doggy button.



By the way, in case you haven't figured it out, I'm using the same pattern as usual, just not doing the stripes. This yarn stripes itself.



The hat.



Pattern: Chibi Striped Baby Hat by Chiaki Hayashi

Size made: 6 months

Yarn: Premier Yarns Everyday Soft Worsted Prints by Deborah Norville
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Red Rocks

Yarn: Caron Simply Soft
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Autumn Red

Needles: Circular size 7

Started: May 28, 2018
Finished: May 29, 2018

The booties.



Pattern: Seamless Garter Tassel Booties by Karen Strauss
Size made: 6 months

Yarn: Premier Yarns Everyday Soft Worsted Prints by Deborah Norville
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Red Rocks

Yarn: Caron Simply Soft
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Autumn Red

Needles: Circular size 7

Started: May 30, 2018
Finished: May 31, 2018
The blanket.



Pattern: A shell stitch edging.

Size made: 36 by 30 inches

Yarn: Premier Yarns Everyday Soft Worsted Prints by Deborah Norville
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Red Rocks

Yarn: Caron Simply Soft
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Autumn Red

Hook: USA size G

Started: June 3, 2018
Finished: June 3, 2018

That is all for today.

Live long and prosper. \\//

6/5/18

Layette Set #29

Not doing much blogging of late, not that I haven't had something to blog about. I have had lots to blog about. Just haven't been able to sit down at my computer. It's actually a bit frustrating cuz I want to blog more than I have been.

I have been doing lots of knitting, cross stitching, and embroidering though. I've got layette sets finished. Here's number 29.



The Cardigan



PatternSuper Natural Stripes by Fawn Pea

Size: 0-6 months

Yarn: Jojoland Invention
Content: 80% Acrylic/20% Wool, worsted weight
Color: 3 Wva

Yarn: Unknown Acrylic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Black

Needles: Circular size 5 and 7

Started: May 10, 2018
Finished: May 18, 2018

Comments: I started out thinking this yarn would look good with some fabric I already have, but it knit up quite differently than I thought it would and looked horrendous with my fabric. So I decided to knit everything up, then go find fabric to match.

The yarn is plyed to have 2 variegated colors plyed together doing long color changes. It has made for some very interesting fabric.




Close up of the button.



I ended up getting a red fabric with dogs on it that had many of the colors that are in the yarn. I also found some adorable dog buttons to go with.

The Hat



Pattern: Chibi Striped Baby Hat by Chiaki Hayashi

Size made: 6 months

Yarn: Jojoland Invention
Content: 80% Acrylic/20% Wool, worsted weight
Color: 3 Wva

Yarn: Unknown Acrylic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Black

Needles: Circular size 5 and 7

Started: May 19, 2018
Finished: May 20, 2018

Went with a pompom on the hat this time.

The Booties



Pattern: Seamless Garter Tassel Booties by Karen Strauss
Size made: 6 months

Yarn: Jojoland Invention
Content: 80% Acrylic/20% Wool, worsted weight
Color: 3 Wva

Yarn: Unknown Acrylic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Black

Needles: Circular size 7

Started: May 20, 2018
Finished: May 21, 2018

Comment: The booties do not match each other because I didn't have enough yarn to make them match, but they match the cardigan just fine. I like them this way.

The Blanket



Pattern: One rnd of (sc1, ch1) all the way around with 3 (sc, ch1) in each corner, join rnd with sl st. One rnd of sc1 in each st with 3 sts in each corner all the way around,  join rnd with sl st. Change color and do one rnd of dc with 3 dc's in each corner all the way around. Join with sl st.

Size made: 36 by 30 inches

Yarn: Jojoland Invention
Content: 80% Acrylic/20% Wool, worsted weight
Color: 3 Wva

Yarn: Unknown Acrylic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: Black

Hook: USA size G

Started: June 2, 2018
Finished: June 2, 2018 

Cute fabric, isn't it? I found it at Joann's.

Two weekends ago I was puttering in the yard and managed to step into a small hole and sprain my right knee. I didn't see the hole because the grass was hiding it. That same day, I went up and down a ladder quite a bit. The knee wasn't hurting much at all. My daughter and I were cleaning the rain gutter on the back of the house. It had never been cleaned out before, so it was pretty full of yuck and pine needles. 

Doing the ladder with a sprained knee was not a very smart thing to do. I think it's made it much worse than it was to begin with. So now I'm hobbling around with my cane. It's been very painful and making it very hard to sleep at night. I've been using the ice pack quite a bit and it's helping. It's healing, but very very slowly. I'm frustrated. I've got a ton of yard work that needs doing and I'm severely limited in what I can do now. Sigh.

At least we've got a clean gutter now.

The weather has been glorious. Sunshine and perfect temperatures. I've been able to throw the windows and doors open and let the sweet smelling breeze drift through the house. All the winter stuffiness is gone. We've had some rain too, cleaning the pollen out of the air.

How's this for news. Husband has decided he's going back to school full time and getting a Masters in Computer Science, rather than hunting for a job. I really am not very happy about it. It's going to take at least 2 years. I just want him to get a job and have things go back to the way they were before he was laid off. Sigh. Having him home has completely discombobulated my life. There are so many changes in it now I have insomnia. I am not able to sleep. I'm awake almost all night long. The brain just won't shut down. I've been reading a lot. I'd rather sleep though.

Daughter Ruth was not allowed to graduate, so she is home for the summer. She will have to do one more semester to retake the classes that the credits expired on. She doesn't seem to mind. Me, I'm pissed cuz credits should not expire. I am enjoying having her home though. She's been a big help to me, especially since I sprained the knee.

I will, hopefully, blog about Layette set 30 tomorrow. Until then

Live long and prosper. \\//


5/11/18

Golden Mittens

Another finished project for KnitWits. A pair of children's mittens.



Pattern: Basic Pattern For Childrens Mittens by Elizabeth Durand
Size: 4-6 years old

Yarn: Cascade 220 Superwash Wool
Content: 100% Superwash Wool, worsted weight
Color: Gold

Needles: Circular size 5

Started: February 7, 2018
Finished: May 9, 2018

Comments: I used this free pattern to teach someone how to knit mittens. I thought I ought to try it out to make sure it's a decent pattern so the first mitten got done quickly. This was also one of my take-with-me projects, which I only worked on when out and about-like waiting at the doctors office and stuff like that. That is why it's taken so long to finish the second mitten. The pattern is fine.



This is graduation weekend at the University of Idaho. Our daughter, Ruth, is a senior this year. We're going down there today because Ruth's team has won an award on their Senior Project and we're going to attend the ceremony. I'm excited, and very proud of her. They were working on a device that goes on the arm and keeps track of how much a person does their physical therapy, or something like that. It was a very challenging project.

Unfortunately, daughter Ruth doesn't get to graduate as we'd hoped. Apparently credits expire. So classes she took when she first attended, out of high school, have expired and they're going to make her take those classes again, or at least, that's how I understand the situation. I'm a little pissed off about it. Since when did credits start expiring?

The graduation ceremony is on Saturday and we're going to it even though Ruth isn't graduating because we have 2 nephews who are graduating. We're having a big family party afterwards in celebration. It's going to be a hectic weekend. We'll be making a 2 hour drive down 2 days in a row, and of course 2 hours back home again. Lots of driving. We tried getting a room for the night so we wouldn't have to do all that driving, but they were hard to find. Everyone was booked up very early. The one room we did find wanted an enormous amount of money for it. Price gouging if I've ever seen it. We can buy a lot of gas for what they wanted for that room. So driving it is.

Spring is in it's full glory right now. The flowering plum is blooming and it smells so good. The leaves are coming on the trees, and the turkeys are doing their mating dances. I've dragged the cushions for the deck furniture out of storage and the deck is all set up for knitting and sitting. I love spring. The weather is warmer, and it's supposed to be a beautiful sunny weekend. Yay!

Live long and prosper. \\//


5/10/18

Layette Set #28 And A Story

I have finished Layette Set #28 for KnitWits, also known as the Entrelac set.



My goodness, what a project. It is not for the faint of heart so I'm probably never making another one of these, but it sure turned out cute! Here's the pieces.

The Cardigan




Pattern: Entrelac Baby Set
Size: 0-6 months

Yarn: Red Heart Classic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: White

Yarn: Caron One Pound
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 508 Sky Blue

Yarn: Big Twist Value Solids
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 5004 Medium Gray

Needles: Circular size 2 and 6

Started: February 8, 2018
Finished: March 27, 2018

Comments:  There is a lot of detail work that is done in this project. Lots of pieces knit separately and then sewn together. I did use a size 2 instead of the called for size 3 for the welt and cuff ribbing because when I first cast on the welt (this thing is knit from the bottom up) I wasn't home and didn't have a size 3 with me, so I just used the size 2 I did have with me. If I were to do it over, I'd use the 3.

Back

If I were to do this again, I would do the collar different. I would pick up stitches around the neckline, instead of making it a separate piece to sew on cuz sewing on that bugger was not easy.

Here's a detail shot of the stitch pattern.



I decided to go with plain blue buttons because the Entrelac should stand out. I couldn't have found a more perfect blue for them too. That gray band across the bottom of the yoke was constructed in a way I don't run across very often. Lots of hand sewing on that baby.



I'm glad I made it just because I learned a lot doing it, and now I can say I made an Entrelac baby set.



The Hat



PatternEntrelac Baby Set
Size: 0-6 months

Yarn: Red Heart Classic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: White

Yarn: Caron One Pound
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 508 Sky Blue

Yarn: Big Twist Value Solids
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 5004 Medium Gray

Needles: Circular size 6

Started: March 28, 2018
Finished: April 24, 2018

Comments:  I understand why the Entrelac cuff band was knit flat, but the main part? Nuh uh. I did it in the round instead. One less seam to sew.

The Booties



PatternCuffed Cutie Booties by Rosemary Drysdale
Size: 0-6 months

Yarn: Red Heart Classic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: White

Yarn: Caron One Pound
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 508 Sky Blue

Yarn: Big Twist Value Solids
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 5004 Medium Gray

Needles: Circular size 6

Started: May 3, 2018
Finished: May 8, 2018

Comments:  I am so glad I found this pattern! I didn't want to make plain booties with this set. It was a nice challenge to work on too. 



Just as a reminder, it's in the book Entrelac 2 by Rosemary Drysdale.

The Blanket



Pattern: One rnd of (sc1, ch1) all the way around, join rnd with sl st, ch3, then one rnd of dc in the back loop of each stitch. Join with sl st and weave in the ends.

Size made: 36 by 30 inches.

Yarn: Red Heart Classic
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: White

Yarn: Big Twist Value Solids
Content: 100% Acrylic, worsted weight
Color: 5004 Medium Gray

Crochet Hook: Size G

Started: May 9, 2018
Finished: May 9, 2018

Comment: I love those elephants.



Now, the story part of this post.

Last night I'm sleeping peacefully. Zoey is snoozing on the end of the bed, and the bedroom windows are open cuz it was overly warm in the room. Around 2 am we were awakened by a lone coyote howling "Aroooooooooooo!" Zoey jumped up and started barking and whining and generally doing a very nice rendition of a freak out. 

The coyote howled again "Arooooooooooooo!" Now Zoey is really freaking out and I'm trying to calm her down.

The coyote howled a 3rd time "AROOOOOOOO!" Geez, it sounded close to the house. All of a sudden, Zoey stopped, turned toward the open window and howled very loudly "AROOOOOOOOO!"

The coyote shut up and didn't make another sound the rest of the night. And I'm sitting there on the bed with my mouth hanging open cuz I had no idea Zoey could howl like that.

I had a very hard time getting back to sleep.

Zoey, Queen of the Coyotes

Live long and prosper. \\//

5/3/18

I Found One

I found an entrelac baby bootie pattern that works for me. It's in here:



The book arrived yesterday from Amazon. I've already started the first one.



It looks a little weird at the moment, but I assure you, it will look like a bootie when I'm done.

While waiting for the book to arrive, I knit a doll skirt for the JID girls.



In real life, the purple is much darker and the sparkles are green. It will go nicely with the lavender mohair sweater I knit last year and still haven't done anything with it.



I also have finished the 17th character in my Mini Star Trek cross stitch project, the Gorn.



He's so darn cute! I made a change in this pattern. I made the gauntlets a little longer and the hands green instead of brown like the gauntlets, and I made the colors of his outfit closer to what they are in real life.

I only have 2 characters left. The next one will be KHAAAAANN! Heh heh.

Sweet hubby had 3 interviews this week, but no offers, yet. It's been almost 8 months now. It gets discouraging, but he keeps applying for jobs. We can't give up.

The flowering plum is loaded with flower buds. We are having a beautiful day today too. The temperature is a perfect 72 with sunshine and partly cloudy skies. I ate my lunch out on the deck and soaked up some much needed vitamin D. All the flowering trees are blooming in Coeur d'Alene already. We're about 2 weeks behind them. Kind of weird. We're only 17 miles away, but our climate is so different.

Well, that's the news for now.

Live long and prosper. \\//