Archive for January, 2008

Christmas still?

January 21, 2008

I did get all the Christmas stuff back in the attic. There it will sit until the end of Nov. when I get a spurt of energy to bring it all back down again. I have to enlist the help of Hubby to get it down and put it back up again. The only access to our attic is with a ladder. It’s hard for one person to climb the ladder hanging onto a plastic tote heavy with decorations. Oh, to have a real staircase to the attic! Maybe one of these days. . . .

#1 Daughter has a blog, Write From Karen. She wants to highlight one of my crafts every week on her blog. I love the idea! Another way for me to get motivated to make more crafts! Yea!! I sent her the pic of my scarf I made with the knitting loom that I had pictured in my last blog entry to be used this week. Next week will be the wristers that I finished knitting last night.

 wristers.jpg

 You know, they really are warm! I’ll have to keep a pair for myself. Anyway, be sure to check out her blog. She has one of the best blogs I’ve ever read, (and I’m not the least bit prejudiced, of course!)   🙂

 I put up the card table in my sewing room and have been working on my new clearance craft kits that I went a little nuts buying.

 tablemess.jpg

clearancecrafts.jpg

They’re all so cute. I like the cards with the felt characters on them. And the Christmas tree out of wooden spools. The little gift sacks made into a snowman head are cute too. 

sequinedstockings.jpg

I bought two packages of these little felt stockings. Each package makes six stockings. Yes, that’s twelve stockings I have to make! I timed myself on one and it took me about an hour and a half to make it. Let’s see, where’s that calculator? Wow, that’s eighteen hours to get them all done! (I can’t believe I had to use the calculator for that!) I’m planning on making at least one a day and so far, I’m good to go. It really is relaxing also. I think I like working with felt and hand-sewing all those little sequins on. (I’m really not kidding!)

I finished the first sleeve of the sweater and started the second one. Usually I work on it at work during my lunch hour. Hubby downloads a knitting and crochet podcase from the Lion Brand blogsite. They usually have a new one once a month. It’s very interesting and entertaining as well. The newest one has an interview with Vanna White. I listen to them at work while I’m knitting. The only problem with that is, my friends want to know what I’m knitting on, so I have to pause to talk to them. I usually have to listen to it again at home while I’m working in the sewing room. That’s ok, though. I like to talk to my friends about my crafts.

That brings me to another subject. I’ve taught a young gal at work how to knit! She’s only 21, well 20 at the time, but she was getting ready for another surgery on her hip. (She’s had several since she was born.) She was going to be layed up for a few weeks, saw me knitting one day, and wondered if I would teach her so she’d have something to do instead of watch tv all day long. At first I thought she was just humoring me, but boy has she run with this! She’s made scarves for all her family and friends, and is now making baby sweaters for nieces and slippers for herself and I don’t know what all. She gets so excited when she talks to me about what she’s making, yarn sales, etc. She actually reminds me of myself about 40 years ago! Maybe this is my granddaughter I was never met to have.

 That’s it for now. Grab a cup of tea, cozy up in the big chair and get those fingers flying until next time

Advertisements

A New Year — A Slow Start

January 14, 2008

I thought I would have more inventive titles to my blog this year. I’ve not a very imaginative person, so I’ll not have some cute titles like some people I know. But I’ll do the best I can do — and isn’t that all anyone can ask?

I titled this “A Slow Start” because here it is the middle of Jan. already and I really haven’t done much yet. It just seems like the same o’ same o’ around here. In fact, I’m embrassed to say, I still don’t have all my Christmas decorations down yet! I shouldn’t admit that. I’ve never been this late getting them all back in the attic. I have several excuses I could use like it’s been really cold, I’ve worked a lot since Christmas, etc. which would all be true. But unfortunately, if you really want to do something, then you’ll find the time to do it, right? Ah ha! maybe that’s the problem! Maybe I don’t really want to do it!! I think maybe  subconsciously I want Christmas to linger on because it was such a wonderful time that I want it to last longer. No, maybe I’m just being lazy — call it like it is.

 I’ll tell you what I have been doing. I’ve been doing a LOT of shopping! Getting a head start on next Christmas by taking advantage of all the great Christmas clearance items that every store in town is having right now. I’ve stocked up on so much that I’ll be set for the next two Christmases or maybe three. I can’t resist bargains! Especially if I know I’ll be using what I get and it won’t go into a stash like my yarn. *ahem*

I got a HUGH box of clearance craft items in the mail the other day. Who can resist 90% off!! Now, let’s see. I need to set up my table and start working on these so they’ll be ready for the Christmas craft show and to give to my friends at work, etc. As long as I stay in the Christmas mode, I’ll be working on them. But, in just a few shorts weeks, there’s Valentine’s Day, and I’ll stop thinking about Christmas and, oops! Christmas will be here and I won’t be ready. AGAIN. (I think I’m hopeless.)

What has happened around here since the New Year started? Let’s see. Besides shopping most of the time I’m not at work, I’ve been over to visit my sister and given her the lap afghan I made her for Christmas, which she didn’t get for Christmas. My other sis came too.  We all had a nice visit, saw pictures, caught up with news, etc.  

I got my new table. It’s a Martha Stewart brand and I got it at K-Mart. I went to every furniture store in town and no one had a solid white table. I came close at a couple that had off-white tables with a wood-colored, butcher block top. But I wanted a solid white one. Well, I remembered that I’d seen one at K-Mart a while back in a sales flyer. So what do you know! I found one.

new-table.jpg 

I got the table and six chairs and paid more for them than if I’d bought them at a furniture store! The table has a drawer in it which I thought was really cool. Extra storage! Yea! 

drawerintable.jpg 

There’s a side under the top about four or five inches wide all the way around the table so the drawer can be there. After we got it all set up at home, I LOVED the way it looked! Then I went to sit down in one of the chairs. I realized that the side comes down so low that it’s hard to sit down and scoot yourself up under the table without hitting your knees. Aaah! Well, I guess we’ll just have to get used to it, because I LOVE the white table in my red and white kitchen!  

My friend at work introduced me to the knitting looms that are so popular now. She let me borrow one of hers that is an oblong shape. I found some yarn in my stash and made myself a neat scarf!

loom-scarf.jpg

I used a white yarn and a blue varigated yarn together. It looks like a knitted ribbing stitch and it stretches like one too. It was so much fun that I bought myself one of the long looms. I also bought my sister one. I wonder if she’s used it yet. She doesn’t knit, so maybe she’ll like this.

I had another lunch date with my friend, Carolyn. I so look forward to getting together with her. She got herself a new quilting machine and has been practicng with it. She had a couple of show and tells to show me. After my visit with her, I get all hyped-up to do some sewing and quilting. To add to that, another friend at work showed me a baby quilt that she made for a gift. It was so pretty! I found some material that I want to use for a quilt for one of the grandsons. I haven’t started it yet. (surprise, surprise!) I think I need to take a quilting class if not for any other reason than to give me the motivation to get going on this quilting business. I really want to learn more about quilting, I really do! But I have a terrible time getting started on something I don’t know much about.

I went back to knitting on the sweater that I started before Christmas. I’ve got the back, front, and most of the first sleeve done now.

That’s about all that’s been happening around here. It’s hard to believe that Jan. is half over already. Why does time have to go so fast! I have the next three days off (yeah!). My top priority is getting all the signs of Christmas back in the attic.

Have a great day and I hope you get back to knitting and crafting if you haven’t already done that! Keep those needles flying!

Weeks 50, 51 and 52 FINALLY

January 9, 2008

I think I messed up my weeks, because there wasn’t three more weeks in the year since the last time I wrote. Leave it to me to mess things up.  Oh well.  Anyway. . . . .

I’ve really let this blog slide — didn’t mean to, it’s just been so busy through Dec. and so much to do. A wonderful busy though. I LOVE preparing for Christmas.

I will attempt to bring you up-to-date through Christmas and New Year’s without going into much detail, because I do tend to do that! There’s a lot to say and lots more pics, but I can’t put them all on here or there wouldn’t be room for anything else! I need to figure out how to get a Flickr account and put all my pics on there.

But I digress. Lets see. Week 50 was a busy week getting ready for Christmas by doing last minute shopping, wrapping gifts and baking. Oh, I LOVE to shop for my kids and grandkids! It’s the one time of the year that I can spend money on them and buy them things and not feel quilty for spoiling them! I always say I will control myself this year, but then I find something else one of the kids would like, so then I have to buy something else for everyone else because they all have to have the same amount of gifts to open. Right?!? Right!  Then I wind up spending more than I thought I would, etc., etc., etc. But it’s sooooo FUN! And it’s only one time a year, right?

I REALLY like shopping for stocking stuffers. I like the challenge of finding something useful, (or purely useless), for just a dollar or so. I got my son-in-law a Christmas tie that plays music! I didn’t get to see him open it because everyone opens their stockings at the same time and it tends to get a little wild. I was hoping to see his reaction to it. He probably just had a little thought about how strange his m-i-l is, then continued  on with the business at hand.

But I digress again, I’m jumping ahead to Christmas Day.  Back up. I spent a whole day baking candy, cookies, more candy and more cookies! I took several plates of goodies to work on our goodie day. We charged everyone for the goodies they eat and then donated the money to CMN. I thought that was a good idea. We actually brought in quite a sum of money for our charity.

I lucked out on my hours at work this year. Usually I have to work every day until Christmas. Well, I still had to work, but I pulled a 5 am to 9 am shift the two days before Christmas. Yes, that’s right, I had Christmas Eve off!! Of course I was sleepy, but at least I was at home being sleepy.

It’s been a tradition to have a party with Hubby’s family on Christmas Eve ever since I’ve been in the family 43 years ago. This was the first year we didn’t have a party with them. Our families are getting so big that it’s hard to get everyone in one house. If we’d been on the ball and planned in advance, we could’ve rented a banquet hall or some place like that for all of us to meet. But wait till next year. I’ll take the ball and run with it if no one else does.

Some of us gathered at the folks’ house the day before Christmas anyway, just to see them and give them our gifts.

fourgen.jpg

Here’s a four-generation pix taken with the youngest great-grandchild.

ggwith2guys.jpg

Great-grandpa with our two younger ones.

gmaandalex.jpg

It was a nice day, and we played outside with the small ones.

gpaandzak.jpg

We had a lot of house guests this year. Our two children and their families that live away from here stayed with us. That’s a lot of people in a small house with one spare bedroom that’s also my sewing room. It took some doing, but we made room for everyone. Actually, it was kind of fun having them all here. I mentioned to my husband that we needed to get the third child and family to come spend the night too, and we’d have them all here. That would have been a hoot! But they would have had to sleep in the cars in the garage, because we really didn’t have any room for anymore! I’ve heard of families that do that, though — what fun that would be!

Christmas morning was the worst for the four-year old grandson. He kept asking if it was time to open gifts. He was very patient, however, for just being four. Hubby’s folks and Number 1 daughter and her family came. We all had a great time while we visited and ate our meal. Then we all went to the sunroom and started handing out gifts to the delight of the boys, especially the four-year old. What fun! We let the kids go first, and one by one they opened their gifts so we could all see what they got.

atourhouse.jpg

thumbsup.jpg

surpriseface.jpg

bigsmile1.jpg

funnyface.jpg

Several hours later, with wrapping paper in big trash bags, the kids playing with toys, gifts in separate piles ready to be taken home by the recipients and everyone visiting and having a little more dessert, our day was coming to an end. And what a day it had been. Soon, everyone was beginning to gather up their bags, toothbrushes, gifts, etc. to head home. All of a sudden it was just Hubby and me — all alone again. The first thing we did after we plopped down in our chairs was take a nap!! It was tiring, but what a time! I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

The next two days after Christmas, I was off work, so Hubby and I made a trip to Jeff City to see Daughter C. and her new house.  We were going to help her out by painting the boys’ rooms while they were down here staying with their Dad during the winter break from school. But the boys decided they didn’t want their rooms painted even though one of the rooms is pink! It’s a really light pink, so I guess it doesn’t bother him. Maybe it looks white to him.

We took our old table with us to give the C. because I’ve been wanting to get a new white table for my red and white kitchen. She and the boys had been eating on a card table, so she really needed one.

We got there just as she was getting home from work, so we got the table put together and had some supper on it. We had a nice evening with her, looking around the house and watching a movie together. I put some lights on their Christmas tree that the boys decorated. They’ll have their Christmas when the boys get back home.

treeinlivingroom.jpg

The next day, while C. was at work, Hubby and I put a shelf unit together and cleaned out some boxes of books that she wanted to put in the shelf unit,

bookcase.jpg

fixed her toilet and put on a new seat,

bathroom.jpg

put together a clothes rack, did the laundry and hung it on the rack, cleaned out some more boxes, re-hung the stair rail on the wall going to her basement, greased the garage door (it really squeeked bad!), moved some furniture around in the basement and just generally cleaned up all the rooms a little.

kitchen.jpg

As a finishing touch, I found a tablecloth and piece of crockware to put on the table just before we left to meet her for lunch before we headed on home.

oldtablenewhouse.jpg

That was really fun. I felt like I was on one of those extreme make-over shows trying to get everything done at the last minute. The only thing missing was getting to see her expression when she got home and saw it all. She wrote to me, however, and started her letter out with “Wow!”, so I think she liked what she saw.

Our New Year’s Eve was pretty uneventful. We went out looking for a new table until the stores closed, then came home, ordered pizza, and watched some movies that we got for Christmas. We both nearly gave out before midnight, but I got my New Year’s kiss, then we went to bed. Can’t stay up all night like I used to when I young.

I hope everyone out there in blog-land had a Happy New Year’s celebration and will have the greatest New Year of all!