Holiday Hurray!

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ETA: Mom if you're reading this, better stop now or you will ruin the Christmas Surprise.

Contrary to the 'progress' shown by my blog, I actually have been getting some crafting and art done. I've mostly just been enjoying the warm glow of Christmas. Miraculously, Florida actually cooperated and gave us a few COLD days. I don't mean chilly, I mean COLD. It hardly ever gets cold in Florida, at least not to me. The weather came at the perfect time too. Roger and I have been happily buzzing along decorating out HOME for Christmas. Yup I said it. The crazy red neck built house actually feels like a home right now. I've been trying to get good pictures to show, but it's hard to photograph lights you know? But I did take some pictures. Roger and I even got a couple of ourselv
es enjoying some HEAVENLY cocoa by the glow of our lighted window. (I can make some killer cocoa if I do say so myself)

So I will get those photos posted up soon. Today I am nearly finished with a Christmas gift for one of my nieces. I haven't decided if I am going to show it before the holiday or not. I am not sure if they look at my blog. I don't think they do so it should be safe.. LOL. I just need to finish sewing a pin back into something. But to do that I need to get a pin back. So I am waiting on that. I have a few more gifts to work on this month. It's going to be busy. I have the other niece to finish a gift for, mom, dad, Roger, Sandi, Drew and the pumpkin. Though he will probably get the hats I am still working on as his Christmas gift. :) Since the chances of my getting them into the mail before then is slim anyway. LOL

I hope his head is still the same size. It's a good thing hats stretch!

ETA: I really have been doing too much. I just realized I FINISHED the gift for mom and dad. Do you want to see it? I know you do. I made Christmasy inspired love birds for them. How cute! This tim
e of year is personified (as far as birds go) with Robins and Cardinals. So I made them a pair of Robins. I think they came out really nicely. They are based on the birds over at Attic24. If you've never been to Lucy's blog, you should definitely check it out!


The Shipwreck Reveal!

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It's finally finished. And I might add, I am damn proud of myself for finishing this. I started this shawl on September 14th and finished binding it off on November 23rd. However, it finished blocking and drying today, November 26th. It's stunning! I learned a lot on the process of making this.

1. I learned how to do the magic loop method of starting a circle... Learned How... not Mastered How. But it is fun and I think I will be doing it again in the future.

2. Life Lines are the savior of knitting! I didn't use them in the beginning and at one point during the bleeding heart section, had to rip completely back to the beginning. Near the end during the fagot lave section, I got complacent about them and lost 12 rows of the never ending (yo, k2tog). USE LIFELINES.

3. Never ever again will I spend all day knitting along happily and then try to bind of a large project. The rows near the end of Shipwreck are quite substantial. I managed to get my speed down to about 45 minutes a row. Binding off took me 2 and a half hours. From what I understand, I made good time. I should have waited until the following day.

4. Blocking is my best friend in knitting. When I finished the shawl I was disappointed with it's size. I wanted a large shawl. I had the option to knit a few extra rows onto it and I decided not to because I wanted to finish in time for Thanksgiving. It barely wrapped around my shoulders and just covered my back. So I blocked it. I am happy to say I can cover my head with it now and it still touches the backs of my knees. It wraps around me with out issue now.

5. Beaded knitting is a PAIN. The knitting part of it is a breeze. It didn't slow me down at all. Moving thousands and thousands of beads down hundreds and hundreds of yards of yarn on the other hand... I found the best way to do this is to unravel the whole ball or hank, space the beads out along the entire length then wind it up.

6. Hubby's are invaluable to a big project. Not only did my hubby take it upon himself to space out my beads for me so I could keep knitting and finish in time, he also used his ingenuity to make us a swift out of k'nex since buying one is not in the budget. Hubby's - never leave home without one.

What it comes down to, is I am smitten with this shawl.

This was my first big knitting project. When I started it, I had never done lace before, never used a life line, never used a stitch marker, never used magic loop. I had never done anything then short rows of Knit and Purl. I was a complete novice. This was one of the most fun and rewarding projects I have ever done. Don't be afraid to try it!







10:57 AM Posted In , Edit This 0 Comments »
I finally was able to edit my blog layout. As a result, on the right hand side, you will see widget that shows off my projects for Ravelry. You have to be a member to look at the projects over there and while membership is free, people who don't knit or crochet probably have no interest in being a member. So my projects can be seen there. I try and post updates here when I do them. Sometimes when it's a project I am squeezing in under the wire for HPKCHC, I might forget. So enjoy!

Shipwreck Progress

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I am knitting away on my Shipwreck shawl and I am still trying to finish by Thanksgiving. I should have no problem finish by the end of the month but I need to do at least one more project. So I would really like to have it done by Thanksgiving. Here are pics at just over 75%

Okay wth... not only will blogger not let me update my layout... now it will not let me post pictures!?

Well I finally got that part fixed...

Aggravated

1:16 AM Posted In Edit This 0 Comments »
I have some things I wold like to add to the blog as far as layout goes. However, for DAYS now the layout function has not been working. Blogger say they are aware of the issue that anyone having custom content is not able to use their layout feature right now. AGGRAVATING.

There has been no update on the blog so as far as I know there hasn't been any progress. Naturally, I leave my setup alone for ages at a time. When I finally found someone to help me add a function I have been looking for, blogger decides to not work.

Grrr

Care of Magical Creatures

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There is a contest going on over at the HPKCHC on Ravelry. Care of Magical creatures was one of the choices for the OWL exam this term and they need a badge for completion. Here is my submission!

A few new things!

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So you may remember that I have been bitten by the yarn bug. :) I've been working very diligently on a shawl I plan to have finished by the end of next month. However, I have managed to make a few smaller things in the mean time. These have all been made for the HPKCHC on Ravelry. You need to be a member there to look at my project pages though. (It's free) So here are pictures of my snails, turtle, and a couple new pictures of my scarf.

(Yup, that's a beer bottle. Don't you know a fantastic way to get snails and slugs out of your garden is to put a little dish of beer in the garden. It's true!)

(We had to knit our animagus. I chose a cute little turtle. I'm not 100% sure if I were to have an animagus that I would be a turtle.. but I wanted her. So here she is!)


(And here is that shawl again. Since I presented it it for Divination and pointed out how it represented my zodiac sign Aquarius, I have it pouring out of my glass water jug and across the table in waves.)

Drop Stitch Scarf

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So this is the scarf I have been working on to wear to Andy and Sandy's wedding. I am really loving the way it has come out. It is sooo soft and it drapes beautifully. I am also going to be submitting it for one of the classes on the HPKCHC forum, but I haven't written the submission up yet. When I do I'll update the post with the write up. The pictures of the scarf blocking are on my mothers camera. When I get those I will add them here also. But here it is finished!



Progress on Shipwreck.

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I thought I would take a moment today to share my progress on the Shipwreck Shawl. I am absolutely loving this knit. Yes it's tricky and parts are difficult, but I love it anyway. I had to tear back progress to a lifeline the other night so that was discouraging. But I am making progress again which feels wonderful. I had to take a break from it for a little over a week while I completed a project I intend to wear at Andy and Sandy's wedding. However it is still blocking and drying. When it's finished I'll make a post about that.

So I have some pictures for you. The first one shows my progress before I had to rip out, and the second one shows after. They both represent the same place in the pattern I think though. It's really lovely so far. It's just hard to show in photos because of it being a circle. There isn't a good way to spread it out. That of course will change when it is finished and I can block it all.

Harry Potter Part 09

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This Sunday the 4th was the second Annual Harry Potter Party at my house. It was so much fun that all of the planning and work was worth it. Yey! It's always grand when that happens. Everyone's costumes were wonderful. I really appreciated that even though money is tight for everyone right now, that the effort was made to come in costume. I was really chuffed. Here are just a couple of photos.

Gifts for a new Mommy

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As you may remember there was a second fabulous box I showed you all. The second box had gifts for the new mommy inside!

A Star for Patrick

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Remember when I showed you the photo of the fabulous box. Do you want to see what was in it???Here's a little peek...


Oh, a little more!

Tada!!!! It's a star shaped baby afghan! As you can see, it takes up my entire dining room table. I am very very proud of this blanket. It is crocheted with a size F hook and baby yarn. :) It's the largest and most complicated project I have completed to date! I hope he likes it when he finally has his birthday and joins us all!!

Crochet Markers

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So one step at a time as far as tackling the small mound of things I need to post to this blog. Right now though, I am sick and not up to tackling everything all at once. There are too many forks in my fire right now.

But I did complete a small project today. My yarn and knitting needles from Knit Picks arrived today. I also got these little markers that you can put on your knitting when you are done for the day to remind you what size needled you were using. I thought that was brilliant so I devised a way to do the same thing for my crochet.

These are great little charms that have the letter of the size crochet hook on them. So far these are the only hooks I own that I use regularly. As I increase my collection, and the supplies to make these LOL, I will make more markers.

The Luna Lovegood Scarf

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I have completed my new scarf. I am really really chuffed with it. :D it was my first time doing a picot edging. I ran into some trouble somewhere as the picots on one edge do not exactly match the picots on the other edge. But looking at the pattern, my mistake was somewhere in the beginning and I did not catch it until almost the end. I was not about to tear it all back. SOOOo I am very very happy with it. :D

Buttercream Beret!

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I finished making the cutest most wonderful hat ever... EVAH! It was my first attempt at a hat and I am really very chuffed and tickled pink over it. The yarn is Lily Sugar and Cream in the color buttercream. I wanted something that would be easy to care for, since it is a hat. So I chose something from my yarn stash that was 100 cotton. Natural fiber is very very warm though. This is Florida. So for now when it is still warm, this is one WARM hat. I am starting on in acrylic so that it will be lighter and hopefully a but more suited to our Florida weather. So, what do you think!?

One MORE Fabulous Box

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This is a very fabulous second gift box! I cannot yet show what is inside! I very dearly want to though. Soon! Inside this lovely box is a gift for a very special person. Inside this box is a load of fun! Roger and I had a wonderful time picking out its contents. I also learned a great deal about certain things as I made some of what is inside this box. I cannot wait to show you all!

Paper Carnations...AGAIN!

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I finished the paper carnations for the baby shower! Whooo! Now, today I will be decorating the little pots they go into. It should be much fun! But to show you what I have been doing... well that parts I can show you. Here are the carnations!

One Fabulous Box

8:32 AM Posted In Edit This 1 Comment »
This is one fabulous box. I adore hat boxes. There is just something about a hat box that makes me so happy. But this hat box is not for me. This hat box is a gift. But the real treasure is what is inside the box.

I am not going to show you! NOPE! Inside this box is a gift I have worked on for many many days. I learned quite a lot while working on it and perfected some skills. I had a glorious amount of fun making it and am THRILLED and PROUD of the results. BUT alas readers, you will have to wait until the gift has been presented before I can show you what is inside.

Carnations!

7:23 PM Posted In Edit This 0 Comments »
So I got to work on the paper carnations for the baby shower today. I have one fifth of them finished. Half of the red bunch all done! I wanted to take pictures but the batteries in the camera are DEAD. So I will have to photograph them when the batteries charge. It's really rather funny to sit there and realize you are trying to scheme ways to cut a better circle! LOL. But I figured out how to twist the chenille stems to make each one have a small flower and a section that is a bit sturdier for if it is put into a vase. Overall they came out quite pretty. :)

What a great idea

11:42 AM Posted In Edit This 0 Comments »
I really really really want to make these. They are the most awesome shoes. I think they would be prefect for Ren Fest.

Now... where yo get a hold of some leather, and laces and a hole punch thingie....

Artful Update

5:23 PM Posted In Edit This 1 Comment »
I was browsing my older blog entries today and kept getting drawn into how DARK my blog was. It was deep and mysterious and delightfully moody. While I loved it, it didn't reflect my art well at all. It at least does not reflect where I am right now with my art and my creations. So I have once again updated my blog template. I find it to be colorful, uplifting and fun. I find this complements where I see my art and my creative force going much better. Do tell me what you think of it!

I realize many of the older entries are going to be hard to read because of the colors I used in the old blog template. I will update them over time to make them readable again.

Carnations

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I found the most precious tutorial in the Folding Trees Blog.

http://foldingtrees.com/2008/08/flower-week-tissue-paper-carnations/#more-454

It is for paper carnations. They are so easy and I am really thrilled with how they came out. I think I might make some for my bedroom. These four I gave to my mom since it is her tiny teapot and I thought they looked too good there to move them. Enjoy!

8:55 AM Posted In Edit This 0 Comments »
I very much need to post something new and wonderful. Things have been so buys I haven't had much time to produce anything. Undertaking major projects in the house seem to monopolize me. am working on something special right now, but I won't be able to show it for a while because it is a gift. However, once I am finished with that I will be working on the favors for my Halloween Party and those I will be able to show. Whew... it's been a busy year thus far!

A few more Bento!

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This bento was egg substitute cooked in a really thin layer with sauteed spinach and green onion layed on it, topped with a little turkey bacon and rolled up. I sliced it into sushi like rolls and stacked in the box with a tomato and spinach salad and an apple sauce!


This bento was salami and liverwurst on whole wheat with Dijon, spinach and cucumbers. A spinach, cucumber and tomato salad on the side and around the sandwich. I also gave him a peach but it wouldn't fit in the box.


The first photo of this bento shows the bottom layer. Kiwi, tomato, carrots, cheese, spinach and a tuna stuffed sweet pepper. The second photo is a picture of the crisp stars I made him. I took a flat wrap, used a cookie cutter to make the stars and baked them on a sheet sprayed with cooking spray. They are resting on a piece of wax paper.





The first photo shows the bottom layer which was rice and lentil pilaf. The second layer is tomato sauce and a container with black berries and a peach. In the ramekin is shredded Parmesan!

That's all folks!