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Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Years Eve


This was taken New Years Eve back in 2004. It was apparently a rather odd night in Central Ohio, warm enough to be outside...enjoy being outside sitting around a fire. We sat there, enjoyed the fire, chatted and drank our champagne. This year the weather is nothing like that. We'll be inside drinking our champagne this year.

It's been a busy year, a productive year, a year with happiness and sadness; no doubt yours has been the same.

Keep the fond memories of the year of 2011 and move the less then fond memories to the back of your mind as you make room for new adventures in 2012.

I'm not one to make resolutions, though I do think about goals for the new year. If you make goals or resolutions best of luck in reaching and keeping them. Be safe, be happy. I wish you and yours the very best of things for The New Year.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A Christmas Reflection

Christmas 2011 just recently past, though the holiday times are still with us, I thought I do a bit of a reflection. Not the best of pictures, think my batteries were low at this point which made the picture grainy. When this photo was taken not everything was wrapped and under the tree as DD still needed to get some of items under there. She always shops and wraps after she makes it home.

Darling Daughter coming home for a week long visit is the best part of the season for me. We just don't get to see her as often as I would like. She's busy, we're busy, and the distance and cost of visits plays into that.

I'm not offended when people say Happy Holidays to me, instead of Merry Christmas. Doing so implies they may not know if I celebrate Christmas (meaning they may not know my religious beliefs...and that's ok with me. I consider religious beliefs to be a personal and private thing). I don't think saying Happy Holidays takes Christ out of Christmas at all, those feelings are in ones heart. I also think it covers more then Christmas. Happy Holidays, Season's Greetings to me covers Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, and The Jewish Holidays as well.

I do not shop on Black Friday...I do not shop on Manic Monday. Don't belief you could pay enough to do either. I absolutely will not shop at stupid hours be they at 6 am or 12 mn. Reduce your hours so your employes can sleep, spend time with their families and be safer. I am beyond applaud by people who fight each other for gifts. I belief if people would show some personal restraint and not go shopping at those ridiculous hours the stores would be forced to alter their hours and things would be safer.

We generally eat a nice meal at home for New Years or go out but make it home early enough to have Champagne at home when the clock strikes 12.

I was disappointed I couldn't find real candy canes this year for the tree. Real ones to me are the red and white. The best I could do was green and red. They're not as pretty, but far away better then those awful strange colored ones. Putting Candy Canes on the tree always makes me think of my Grandfather, such a fond memory. It's an important tradition for me.

I did not get all the knitting and crocheting projects I wanted done by Christmas, but came very close. Naturally, continuing to work on those that didn't get done.

Next year I plan to buy more from local venders and those on line who do "homemade" vs the chains.

I hope everyone had a joyous holiday with friends and families. And now looking forward to New Years........what will 2012 bring?

Friday, December 23, 2011

A travel plan in order

Fruit Salad Blueberries DoneI've posted about Oddball blankets before, it's a group on RAV, every knitter knits there section and sends the blanket on. Some are baby blankets, some full sized, some even for pets. This is a knitted worsted weight blanket sized for babies that requires 6 knitters and a border patrol person. My section has been complete and now that the blanket, Fruit Salad has it's traveling papers will be mailed, once again.

This blanket has traveled from Canada, to Wyoming, to Texas, to the state of Washington, then to me here in Ohio. From Ohio, The Buckeye State it will travel to Idaho for it's final section. I'm unsure where it will go from there to be bordered. The blue section is to represent blueberries.

Another Finished Object for Friday is January Cloth (my first cable attempt). And my 10th of 12th cloths for Cotton Cloth Calendar Challenge which is part of my YOP. It's not great and I learned that I would NEVER again do a cable stitch using Cotton!

Jan cloth
Cotton has no give which made doing this very difficult. And as you can see where I tried really hard to knit loser...there are some inconsistent holes near the cables. There are sections that turned out nice but I was only able to do a few rows at a time cause it played havoc on hands.

FOF Badge and link in sidebar.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Santa Claus Memories, Thank you Mom

before bookcaseThis is an old bookcase, been in the family forever. The shelves are adjustable (to a point), and the case has been painted many colors throughout the years. I remember it mostly being black in my younger years. A very fond memory of Mom comes to mind especially this time of year especially. She transformed this old bookcase into the fireplace that Santa Clause came down...year after year.

1952She'd remove all the books, and many of the shelves and using crape paper that looked like bricks...bingo, right before you very eyes a fireplace would appear. We watched her do this multiple times...and with her use of magic snow, hanging our socks on the mantle; we believed the Jolly Old Man truly did come down that very chimney.
1953After all, the proof was there every Christmas morning. The colored pictures don't withstand the test of time as well as the old black and whites (1952 and 1953). But clearly you can see, Santa did come to visit and bring great excitement and joy to us kids. My older brother Chuck and I playing cowboys and Indians and even before people knew about the word multi-tasking...clearly we were...we were also having a tea party. Younger brother Mike in the jump seat.

Thank you Mom for the wonderful memories.

I'ld like to add, this magical bookcase has been painted once again, creamy white this time round and is in DD's house.

Merry Christmas Mom.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

What are the Right Tools?

This is the start to The January Cloth for Cotton Cloth Calendar Challenge for my DD. Sigh.........The photo shows 2 cables and the pattern is called mirror image. The beginning you see is after 3 tries! Argh..........it's been frogged multiple times. First it was going to be blue and white......white for snow and blue for cold. Cold and snow pretty much sums up Ohio in January. However, after frogging twice I decided to stick with one solid color, one less issue to deal with. This is my first attempt at cables. Learning to knit cables is one of 2 items on the goal area of My Year of Projects List.

I thought (probably not wisely so), that doing a cotton washcloth would be a good way to try my hand at this stitch, because it's a small project and doing something new on a small project is probably a better idea.....right? Hum, well in retrospeak, I think using cotton for a cable is probably NOT a good idea? Cotton has next to know give, no flexibility which seems to make doing the stitch really hard on my hands......tight. I do a few rows, then take a break.
I read the directions several times, and watched a couple of video's to see how to do the stitch. Above you see 2 types of cable stitch holders. The one that looks like a knitting needle with a curve is the one I started with. My thought was, it's about the same size (gauge) as the knitting needles I'm using for the project..........figured that would keep the stitches the right gauge?
Some directions suggest knitting right from the stitch holder..........yeah, tried that and couldn't keep the count very well. Though it did seem knitting from the holder when the holder was in back of the work (C6B) was easier then C6F. Another video suggested moving the stitches back to the regular knitting needle. That method seemed to work better for me.........except I found again moving them hard to keep the right number, things just seemed toooooooooooo tight, particular with C6F.

Then I remembered the cable holders I purchased previously that looked like big safety pins and thought I'd give those a try. I much prefer these. Using these and putting the stitches back on the needle seems to be easier....not easy, but easier. One of the video's showed a v shape stitch holder that I've not seen in the stores. Need to keep my eyes open, as it seemed like it might be the ticket.

Does the equipment/tools one uses make a difference? As a newbie, I think so...but what say you all? Is using a cotton a foolish way to learn? Is a good wool easier?

YOP link and badge in sidebar. Working on the actual list, plan to have an additional page/tab here vs reposting it each Sunday.

Friday, December 16, 2011

It's Friday....here's Royalty

Blue, Gold, Purple crocheted granny squares joined by a very dark Forest Green. This afghan is a team work project. Cheryl donated the squares over on Bridge and Beyond. I edged the squares, and assembled the afghan. It measures a little over 50 x 64. The dark green yarn was also donated by Laurie over on Bridge and Beyond. I enjoy designing afghans to help the homeless from donated goodies from big hearted knitters and crocheters. Homeless Families Foundation helps homeless families with temporary housing for up to 3 months while they aid the family in seeking help they need to keep their family together, to help with the job search, to help care for the kids and get them to and from school, help with homework etc. It's a wonderful program. When they make the move from temporary housing to permanent housing they receive a "Welcome Home" pack to help them get started. One of the items they receive is the gift of a handmade afghan........a wonderful way to say, "Welcome Home."

This is my finished object Friday post, link/badge in the sidebar. Join in, it's fun. Hope you're all chipping away and finishing up items you need for Christmas Gifts, time's getting close.

**Throwing a challenge out there to all who read this post:
Are you from one of the following states:
Conn, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Miss., Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, or Utah?
No one from those states has donated over on Bridge and Beyond. You could represent your state....surely someone in those states knits/crochets and has a big heart.....nudge nudge**

Saturday, December 10, 2011

A Special Dinner


Our two Cooks, Mean and Stacie. We often join these lovely ladies for dinner and or drinks out. They had a nice surprise for Ernie and I. Said they wanted to cook us dinner. How cool is that folks. Don't they look adorable in aprons doing the dinner prep? Notice the 2 bottle of wine...they know me well.


Stacie cutting fresh strawberries to add to a yummy spinach salad.


Megan grating some fresh parmesian cheese to add to her stuff shells. The shells were awesome. Look out Giada!


While dinner was in the oven, we enjoyed wine, marinated mushrooms and Bruschetta . Conversation was lively, the food excellent, the company wonderful, AND they cleaned up. My kind of a nice evening.

Thank You, we really enjoyed ourselves!

Friday, December 09, 2011

Ta DAH, a Mitered Square for Finished Object Friday

Ok, so this probably doesn't look like much of a TA DAH. Something being knitting in the round? Not really, it's a square. Sure it is, said my hubby when he saw it. It's December's cotton cloth for DD for my Cotton Cloth Calendar Challenge. Well, yeah...I see Christmas colors...but?

Making progress, if fact you might have seen this picture a few days ago for work in progress Wed. This is a mitered square. When I started the pattern, it didn't really make alot of since to me. But, I liked the look when I saw the picture on the pattern and decided to give it a try. I've seen these types of squares and thought they were neat, but looked complicated. At first glance I thought you make a square and knitted or crocheted around 2 sides only to get this effect. You don't. You knit 2 sides at the same time. Look above in picture 1, the green is the cast on. Here I cast on 61 ( you always want an odd number in your cast on). You're knitting one side, making a point which is actually where you decrease, then you knit the 2nd side. Each row get's smaller and smaller on the two sides, bringing the center area closer and closer together.

TA DAH. Visually, the colors in the last picture aren't are as true as it is in real life. And the square is truly square, which in this picture looks a bit off...believe it's a visual because of the color combination and the big to little look of it all. I need to finish tucking in the yarn changes. Normally I do that as I go, but since this was a first for me doing a mitered square...left them...in case I had to frog it. There is 1 mistake, but I didn't frog it.

So even though this is just a little cotton washcloth for my DD, it is a TA DAH for me, because I learned to do something new. After you cast on you knit x amount of stitches, you do a decrease by slipping off 1 stitch, then knit 2 together, the pass the slip stitch over (sl 1, k2tog, psso), then knit the same x amount of stitches. The next row is straight knit.

So....Decease a row
Knit a row
Decrease a row
Knit a row. The trick is to remember, or write down (I use a counter and have it written to see where I am) in order to know how many stitches you're knitting.

Example my first row was a knit 29 on each side of the decrease, my next decrease row was knit 28.
Cast on 61
knit 29, do the decrease, knit 29
knit a row
knit 28, do the decrease, knit 28
knit a row

keep going until you have 3 stitches left and do your bind off.
*determine how many rows you want to do before changing colors and have fun. I liked doing the mitered square, liked the way it ended up and plan to do it again.

Oh, I should add this is Cotton Cloth #9, only 3 to go to finish my Cotton Cloth Calendar Challenge, with the months of Jan, Feb, and March being the last 3 to do.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Memories help a Heavy Heart

Floating in the swimmers cove at Alum "Ocean" with a beer in hand. (Jerry & Kyle)
One of many fall hikes, perhaps this was at Alum, or Hocking Hills Region, but I think maybe it was Highbanks Metro Park. We took so many of these hikes (with wine in a bota and beer in hand), unsure where this particular spot was. (Kyle, Jerry, Ernie and I)
At weeks end at The Beach, one of many. This was Smyrna Beach in Florida. (Ernie and Jerry in back, yours truly, Kyle, and Chelsea in front)
Same trip as above, but with the kids. (Lauren, Chrissy, and Lesley)
A night sail on Alum "Ocean". There were so many. (Kyle & Jerry)

Last night about 5:30 I lost a very dear friend, Kyle. These pictures are but a few of the many memories, the many good times. Think wine think Kyle, think cross stitch think Kyle, think skiing think Kyle, think sailing think Kyle, think camping think Kyle, think fire side chat think Kyle, think hiking think Kyle, think cooking together think Kyle, think sailing think Kyle, think racquet ball think Kyle..........you get the picture. I have memories that connect to so many things in my life both past and present. Memories of 30 years can't be put into one blog post, nor are there enough pictures to share for those 30 years of friendship.

I miss you Dear Friend, rest in peace.

It's never easy to lose someone, even when you know it's best; but remembering the good times, the fun times.........keeps them alive forever in your heart.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Working on Royalty

royalty ghan Half the squares have been edged, and about 1/3 of the squares have been joined. These squares were donated on Bridge and Beyond and when I'm done assembling them will be donated as a house warming gift through Project Welcome Home. Love these colors together. They do look royal to me. Making good headway this wip.

Working on both Dec and Jan cotton washcloths for DD. Here's December's in the works.
Dec clothLiberty scarf is still in works, though I've not worked on it in a couple of weeks. Awesome Green Scarf (for DD) is coming along; but no progress from last post.

Hope you're all doing well this Wednesday, look forward to seeing all your WIP. See links and badges in sidebar.

Did you see the previous post? Please scroll down, I'm very excited that my charity blog, Bridge and Beyond was featured in the winter issue of Crochet Magazine!!

Monday, December 05, 2011

Monday Monday

Having an ugly and very very dark dreary wet day here in Central Ohio. This however, brought a smile to my face. This is page 17 of Crochet Magazine. I say it's the December issue, but it actually says Winter 2011. Bendy Carter contacted me about a year ago and asked if she could highlight my blog, Bridge and Beyond.

They work well ahead. She wrote a pattern, and an article and has highlighted the charity that helps homeless. I'm thrilled and hope this helps spread the news and obtain more helping hands for the cause. It looks like an awesome pattern too folks. Check it out.

Happy Monday, one and all.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Chipping away at My List of Projects, it's Sunday

Naming this Royalty. I think the purple and gold make it look royal. I think these colors work for men or women and will make a nice family ghan when completed. This is another of the many ghans for Project Welcome Home through Bridge and Beyond. All these squares were donated, I'm edging them in a very dark green and will join them in the same dark green and add a border. Once laundered and blocked it will be donated.
YOP Dec 4-10th

Here's the 8th of 12 cotton cloths for my cotton cloth calendar challenge for my Darling Daughter. This is November's cloth for my Cotton Cloth Calendar Challenge. I've already cast on December's, might have enough to show you a picture in a few days. Those left to do are: January, February, and March. Would be nice if I got them all done and could give them to her when I see her over Christmas....but I doubt that's going to happen. Too many other things going on.

Please folks, save time and eye strain, get rid of your captcha. The blogger filter works very well. I just checked my spam folder and deleted 52 comments that did not make it through to the blog. You do not need the captcha. You really don't need it plus moderating comments. Save frustration, save time, save eyestrain. Change your settings. Skeptical...try it a week and you'll see what I mean. Meme's are fun, but visiting everyone is hampered by everyone using captcha's, it really slows down the process.

Things now DONE:
1. Wedding Ghan pictured HERE
2. Oddball blanket (which turned into 2 where I was the border patrol person, Cinco de Mayo and Mardi Gras). Done and Mailed Pictured HERE
then turned into 3 when I started Baby Pink Petuna, HERE...then turned into 4 counting Fruit Salad which is in the works as we speak.
3. Red Scarf No More DONE (donated to Bridge and Beyond) Pictured HERE
4. Pink Poddle Ghan DONE, and donated also to Bridge and Beyond for Project Welcome Home.
5. Jewels Ghan Done, one of an undermined list for Bridge and Beyond, made from donated squares, pictured HERE. Pink Petuna Afghan also DONE (picture Friday for FOF HERE). Donated to Bridge and Beyond. Rainbow Bright DONE pictured HERE. Currently working on Royalty, pictured above.

WIP:
1. Cotton Cloth Calendar Challenge (8 of 12 cloths done, November Cloth pictured above.
3. Awesome Blue Scarf gave up trying to determine what pattern I had been using, and FROGGED! ........ARGH. Officially DELETING this from the list, and replaced it with the green scarf I'm working on for DD pictured HERE.
4. Buckeye Diagonal Scarf, have found the directions to help me determine where I left off, fingers cross this works. Have been in a holding pattern as I couldn't determine where I left off. Thanks to a blogger's good directions of how to determine, am hopeful! ??45% done
5. Candy Corn Ghan (my longest running work in progress ever 60% done) STILL haven't touched it in months.......sigh
6. Working on Liberty Lace for myself (put way way on the back burner), last pictured HERE

Goals:
Learning to knit cables (watched a video awhile back which is helping me feel more confidant and willing to give it a try)---think I've found an easy one to start with and might use it for January's cloth in the calendar challenge...might be a nice way to ease into making a cable!
Learning to knit socks

**I have HAP ghans to pick up and assemble....sometime.**

Friday, December 02, 2011

A Friday and another Finished Project!

I'm very pleased with the way this project finished up. This is Pink Petuna, started with donated squares from a class mate and left over yarn, thanks to Bridge and Beyond.
The squares had the 1 row of pink after the circles with the exception of maybe a handful. I added purple and or green to the squares based on the opposite of the center circle color, then did 2 more rows of pink, joined 5 doing every other color wise. Each strip was then edged with one row of single crochets before joining the strips together. The whole ghan was then edged with a sc row of pink, a sc row of the bright aqua, and finally a row of pink again for the little scalloped edge. It's donated as a house warming gift through Project "Welcome Home".

Got lots of projects still going, no doubt you all do too. Making my rounds for the linky for FOF, adding another plea here for you all to please, please stop using the captcha. The filter on blogger is very good. I check my spam folder weekly and it catches them all. Our linky's grow weekly and visiting, reading, and posting comments takes time. The captcha's make it more time then necessary. Please try it for a week, you'll be pleasantly surprised at how well it works. Go to your settings area from your dashboard and nix the captcha. Thank you for at least trying it. I want to visit you all.

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