Archive for April, 2013

Visiting Family

April 28, 2013

As I’ve mentioned before, we have children living in other cities here in Missouri. We’re so thankful that if they can’t live here, at least they still live close enough that we can visit them when we want.

Our two youngest grandsons live in one of these other cities. A few weeks ago, Grandson #5 invited us to have lunch with him at the “Grandparents Lunch Day” at his school. How could we refuse?!

So Thurs. Hubby and I got up early, made the three-hour trek to their house, had lunch with Grandson, visited the Book Fair that’s going on (stocking the Grandsons up with books), then had a nice visit with Son and family before heading back to get home before dark. It was a long day — but a fun day!

I forgot to take the camera with me when we went to the school for our lunch. But here’s a pic of the youngest one back at home with some of the books we bought for the boys,

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Here’s Grandson #5 after school doing what they do,

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The other kid (standing) is a friend. Grandma played Cootie with the young one,

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Son showed us his E(lectric) – bike,

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and took us to the dog park with him so the dog could get his exercise.

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I snapped a pic of the whole family as we were getting ready to leave.

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It couldn’t have been a more perfect day — even the weather was great!

On the same note, my nephew and his wife came through town for a visit with family. My sis in the nursing home is his mother, so we met there on Sat. for a nice visit as well.

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It’s been a busy week, but all the visiting with family has made it a fun week.

 

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“Knitting is Very Relaxing”

April 26, 2013

This is what I tell someone when they watch me knit. If they want me to teach them to knit, which I’m more than happy to do, I’ll comment on how much they will enjoy the knitting process once they learn the basics.

In fact, it’s so relaxing to me that I’ve been known to actually go to sleep while knitting.

But. . . . . . it’s not always been relaxing for me.

I was 18 years old, a newlywed, was moved to the East coast (from the midwest), knew no one and too shy to make friends. While Hubby was at work (he was in the Army), I sit in a little two-room apartment that took me about five minutes to clean. I needed a hobby! Knitting! I’ve always wanted to learn to knit.

Hubby bought me a “How to” book, a skein of yarn, and a pair of needles and I begin to teach myself how to knit.

It was soooo frustrating! At one point when I was trying to figure out how to purl without adding an extra stitch, (you all know what I mean I’m sure), I brought my arm up over my head and threw the whole piece across the room, along with making the most hideous sound you ever heard come from my mouth. My arms crossed over in front of me and I just sat there staring at it!

The need to want to learn to knit got the best of me, however, so I walked over to where it was laying on the floor up against the wall, picked it up, sit back down with the book in front of me, and read and looked at the diagrams until I “got” it.

Relaxing? Not at that time! But I’m so glad that I was determined to stick with it. In the years since then, I’ve made a lot of nice sweaters, afghans, etc. The more I’ve knit, the better I’ve become, I believe — learning new stitches and techniques along the way. (I’ve even knit some very nice, beautiful sweaters for a shop and was paid for it!)

Then “IT” came along.

I was surfing on the “net” and came across a really pretty baby afghan knitted with several different stitches. How pretty, I thought! The peach yarn I’ve been trying to use up forever would do for this afghan. Of course, I had to start on it right away.

What can I say!?! It’s like I’ve forgotten everything I ever knew about knitting! I can’t seem to “get” the pattern.  I’ve ripped this thing out so many times I thought I’d ruin the yarn.

How many times did I have to start completely over? I’ve lost track! I’ve done everything wrong on this thing. I’ve missed stitches, forgot yarn overs, purled when I was supposed to knit, and vise versa. There were a couple of times when it slipped off the needles and I’d lose a few stitches. (At that point, it wasn’t pretty!)

Here’s how far I’ve gotten on “IT” since I started it at least six weeks ago.

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There are 16 rows and 21 stitches in each row to each pattern repeat. It took me a couple of weeks to finally get through the first pattern repeat. Man o’ man, I came thisclose to chucking the whole thing several times. But I must be a gluten for punishment, (read the above description of “learning to knit” again), because I’d gently put it down, walk away, and try again the next day. In addition to using stitch markers to mark each repeat across the rows, I even copied the pattern row for row onto index cards so my eyes wouldn’t wonder to a different row.

But, by Joe, I think I’m finally “getting” the pattern. I knit four rows today without making a single mistake! I still have to count my stitches after every other row just to make sure I’ve not lost a stitch (forget to yarn over). Sometimes I still do that, however, but I’m getting to know the pattern well enough to “fix” it on the next row without having to rip it back.

I know of at least two mistakes that I’ve made that are still on the afghan and will be a permanent part of that afghan forever. There’s no way I’m ripping it back again.

It may be this time next year before this afghan is done. BUT, done it will be! Because I’m determined that way. 🙂

Jazzed

April 22, 2013

Hubby and I went shopping over the weekend. He’s been needing a new recliner for quite some time and I finally got him interested in at least looking for one.

We went to several different furniture stores and he sit in a lot of chairs. We finally found one that we both liked and bought it! It will be ready to pick up later this week, so pics on that later.

However, we did come home with something.

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Are they just the cutest?!

It was a little extravagant for us; but when Hubby said, “Go ahead and get them”, I didn’t give him a chance to change his mind!

I love looking at them!

Crafty Painting

April 19, 2013

Now that the weather is finally getting warmer, I’ve been making a few treks out to the little shop out back to do some painting.

The more painting I do, the more I’m enjoying it. Not that I’m getting better at it, (hopefully I’m improving some), but I think the more practice I get, the more comfortable I become with it. That’s true with most everything, though. Anyway, the minute I step inside the shop, my mind starts whirling with ideas of what to paint and which item I should begin working on. (And heaven knows I have enough supplies, surfaces, idea books, etc. to keep me busy for a lifetime!)

The first thing I finished on my trek out this year was a couple of projects that I’d started last summer. It was a couple of journals that already had the base coat and pattern drawn on the front. Naturally after finishing them, I got excited all over again and started several others. Painting is soooo fun!

Here’s what I’ve finished so far……..

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Of course, there are several more by now that have been started — not to mention the other items that have been picked out that are now wannabe’s. Now if I could just get this weather to cooperate!

 

Back At It

April 17, 2013

There have been several inquiries about my health/status lately regarding my not posting for a month plus. Simple answer? Just laziness. Nothing dramatic. The fact is, I think I burned myself out with the post-a-project-every-day theme for the month of Feb.

Honestly it was a lot of fun coming up with and making the daily project, but getting each one posted every day was a little stressful for me. I still remember the feeling I had when the last project was finished and posted. It was like a giant AAAhhhhh!

It’ll be awhile before I commit to another timeline project like that again. (At least until I forget what it was like!)

Back to March. My thought for honoring National Craft Month was to try one of the new crafts that I’ve been wanting to try (as I already have the materials for most of them.) BUT, as all of you know me by now, I easily get side-tracked.

One evening as I sit in my sewing room getting ready to listen to an audio tape of a new mystery novel, I looked around to see what I could work on to keep my hands busy while I concentrated on the story. It would have to be something mindless. My knitting was at the point where I would have to give it my full attention so that wouldn’t work. Ah, a cross-stitch project. Perfect.

I pulled out the box that contains all of the unfinished fly swatter covers (of which I finished a couple during my “Feb. Fiasco” ) and started cross-stitching. And after those were done, I pulled out some sachets that I’d started who knows when. And it continued on and on. WOW! I can’t believe how much cross-stitching I’ve been getting done. It’s such a simple handcraft — so mindless — but very time-consuming. So while keeping my mind occupied on the all the mysteries I’ve been listening to, the cross-stitching has just been melting away and I’m finished with another project before I realize it. This has been soooo fun!

Now, unfortunately, I have a day-bed in my sewing room that is running over with UFO’s! Yes, the stitching is done, but the projects still need to be finished. Well, to be fair to myself, I did finish one.

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