Sunday, December 27, 2009

A Year in Review

So here we are at the end of yet another year. Not only are we ramping up to start a new year, but one that sounds so futuristic.

2010

Remember when 2001 Space Odyssey came out and it seemed like it would be FOREVER before we were in the new century?? While I didn't see that movie until much later, I was alive when it was first released in 1968, and even in the 70s it seemed SO far away.

Then 2010 was released in 1984 (another famous year due to the book). Again, it seemed SO FAR AWAY.

Yet in 4 days we will be writing them on our checks. Oh wait, we don't use checks much anymore. We use on line bill pay and debit cards instead of cash and checks. Maybe Big Brother really IS watching us! He at least helps us pay our bills.

Meanwhile even with all the technological advances we've made over the years, there are still people who enjoy handwork. Like me and you. I truly enjoy surfing the web, watching a movie when I want, catching up on last season's TV by watching it all on one small disc and researching something just by "googling" it, but it will never take the place of the feel of a book in my hand or the rhythm of needlework.

Which brings me to my year in review. While I never quite do as much as I want or hope, projects do get done.

What have I done this year?

9 books read. I really think this is more, but I can't remember for sure. I usually keep track of my books, but the last one I wrote down was back in Aug. I know I read at least one more since then, but I'm not sure how many more. So we'll stick with the nine.


Sewing projecs: 5
1 apron
1 pr shorts
1 pr pants
2 receiving blankets

Not as many as I'd like, but I'll take what I can get!


Cross Stitch: 2
Ariel
Meow Spoken Here

Again, pretty sad. I'd like to get a few more done next year.


Knitting: 31

20 family projects
2 scarves
5 pr socks
5 hats
1 sweater
1 blanket
4 wash cloths
1 coaster
1 ear warmer

11 charity projects
3 kitty blankets
3 vests
4 pr socks
1 portion of an odd ball blanket

I had more last year, but I ended up doing less for charity this year. My two favorite charities, Warm Woolies and Children In Common have either dissolved (WW) or have come to a screaching halt (CIC). I had a hard time finding another charity, but I think I will be sending them up to my SIL in NY. She is aware of some families that could use my hand knits and I know it will get to people who can really use them.

Something new that I started this year was keeping track of what I used up and what I bought. Since I don't expect to finish anything else in the next few days, my final tallies are:

approx 127 oz or 7000 yds used up this year! That's abt 8lbs or the length of 70 football fields long!!!! WOW that's a lot of yarn!!!

I only had 8 separate purchases of yarn this year, a HUGE feat for me! And I spent less than $250 to boot!!! I'm trying to use up what I've got, or at least use up more than what I bring in. Of course we have a new year coming up and some vacation LYSs will be visited so I may be sharing some new stash in the coming weeks......

What am I taking into the new year with me? Eight cross stitch projects and believe it or not, only 1 knitting project (but that may turn to 2 because I feel the need to cast on for some fingerless mitts).

If you want to check out last year's list, click here.

Last but not least, here are some impatients I bought last week.

Wonder how long they'll last....

Socks on a Sunday Afternoon

I am a happy mom right now. Why? Because both of my rugrats are wearing socks I knit for them. Makes all the work worthwhile. Baby Girl is wearing the pink and brown socks I made for her back in March and #1 Son is wearing his new ones hot off the needles.

Aren't they nice?

I finished them off last night and kitchenered them a few minutes ago.

Here are my stats.....

Socks for #1 Son

Yarn used: Paton's Kroy Sock yarn Burnished Sierra Stripes #56614 and Kroy Black for the heels and toes.

Sock #1: 3/26/09-11/29/09
Sock #2: 11/30/09-12/27/09

Basic sock pattern: c/o 56 sts 2x2 rib for 1" then stst for rest of cuff.

What I like abt these socks is that whenever he outgrows them, I can cut off the black toes and just lengthen the foot. With a different color foot, it will make picking up the stitches MUCH easier. I'll just have to be sure to save the extra yarn for it.

These will probably be the last thing I finish before the end of the year. I plan on listing my projects out as well, just to see what I've accomplished this past year. I still can't believe we are moving into 2010. VERY strange indeed.

And even though I didn't post it yesterday, Baby Girl did take a pic of our Saturday Sky. It was a bit cloudy out and never really warmed up. Same is true today.


Now to get motivated to finish putting things away from the past couple of weeks....

Friday, December 25, 2009

Such a Deal!!

Around Thanksgiving, I saw a Kitchenaid Stand Mixer in the paper for $139.00. This is a FANTASTIC price, esp since the cheapest I've ever seen them start was $199.00. From there they just go up by a LOT. My plan was to get to Wal-Mart early and get me a mixer. I got there around 7:15am, late by Black Friday standards, but I've been there early before for something that they had so much of, it was still on that sale price a week later. I wasn't worried.

Until I saw someone walking out with one as I was walking in. PS, there were none left. I was SO disappointed. I didn't think I lived in an area where this would be a hot item. When I got home I spent the next few hours and then the next few days searching on line for this great deal. It was gone.

Fast forward to a couple of days ago.......My friend has a Kohl's card and they were having a deal where when you use your card, you get a percentage off your total purchase. She happened to get the highest amount possible, 30% off. That is 30% off the entire purchase! On top of the already slashed prices and clearance items. Now that's a great deal!

So we meet at the store and I'm getting stuff for our upcoming trip. I'm looking at their boots and as I go to sit down, I look up and suddenly I see it. A Kitchenaid stand mixer on sale for $149.00. Limited time only. Three left. I drop the boot and run to the stack. This is only ten dollars more than the one at Wal-Mart AND another 30% off....

My total price was $105.00.

For a Kitchenaid stand mixer.

AMAZING! Do I need this? Nope. Can I afford it? Not at all. But it made me VERY happy and I view it as a therapy session. Retail therapy is SO much better than group! I plan on using it this wknd.

Oh and I got additional Kohl's Kash for my total purchase. Free money for more shopping!! I just LOVE good deals!

While my Kitchenaid was the best deal I got, I also had free money for Bath and Body Works. (this is the one good thing of a poor economy, stores give you free money to walk in their doors!) I got some soaps and creams (LOVE their Cucumber Melon smell), but I found this in one of their bins.

Isn't she cute!!!!

I've named her Wooly.

Now Sheepy

(a beany baby from McDonalds)

has a friend.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Finishing Up

After the wknd of having family out, I've been taking it easy these past couple of days. In fact, yesterday was just finishing up the leftovers and hanging out in bed. Since I was starved for knitting, I took the time to work on some projects and I was able to reap the benefits of my efforts.

Scarf is DONE

Stats for this project:

Denim Sirdar Scarf

Date Start: 7/4/09
Date End: 12/21/09
Total Project Time: 5.5 months (YIKES!)

Yarn used: Sirdar Snuggly DK shade 353

(this one is blurry but shows the correct color)

Cast on 37 sts on a size 7 needle using Mistake Rib

Total scarf size: 4"x70"

It took the full 2 skeins of yarn to get that length but I'm really happy with it. It's long enough to wrap around my neck and still be long enought to look nice.

With the scarf done and it being chilly outside, it inspired me to pick up my kitty blanket, which led to.....

Kitty Blanket DONE!

I'm so happy to have this done as well.
Stats for this project:

Date start: 9/20/09
Date end: 12/21/09
Total Project Time: 3 months

Cast on 100sts on a size 9 needle using 1 strand of ww and 1 strand of DK (except for the part that bulges out a bit, I used two strands of ww there).

Finished size: 20x17

I now have 3 blankets to deliver to the local Humane Society. Hopefully I'll get to drop them off some time this week.

This leaves me with 2 socks on the needles. I'm going to focus on finishing the socks for #1 Son. I'm getting close to the heel on sock #2 and with no other projects in the works, I should be able to get it done by the end of the month.

On a side note, there must be something in their DNA because when I was getting the house ready for Saturday's dinner, Baby Girl couldn't help enough

whereas this is what #1 Son kept going back to until I needed him again.

Girls in the kitchen/guys on the couch tradition is trying to be broken at Happy Acres, but I feel it might be a losing battle....

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Saturday Happenings

In abt 2 hours I will be starting a family dinner that will include this.

Plus stuffing, mashed potatoes, corn (gotta love the starches!), green bean casserole, salad, veggie platter, icecream, two cream pies, soda and Cold Duck (because we're just that classy).

Meanwhile I'll dig into the deep recesses of my closet to see if I can dig out any of my family's linens that were used for dinners back in the day. I am the keeper of them and always want to use them for our family dinners, but it seems as if I always wait until the last minute to pull them out. Spent too much time rearranging the pantry.

I have a 13-lb bird and while all my websites say this is big enough for 5 adults and 2 kids, I hope it's enough. My famiy can EAT so I'm hoping to fill them up with the starches.

For those of you who are buried in snow, is it wrong that I'm jealous? Our friends who are visiting NC are snowed in and are having a fabulous time. Let's hope there is still some left over in a couple of weeks. I don't want to live in it, but playing with it for a couple of days is FUN!

To remind you that there is still a blue sky beyond the snowy clouds, here you go.


I also got a surprise a couple of days ago.

A plant we thought was dead wasn't. It just needed water. Funny how that works. Thank goodness for El Nino and it's rainy days. Since I have to pay for my water, free H2O from the sky is welcome. Unless it comes in big puffy flakes that stick. Some of you are sick of those right abt now.

Stay warm!!!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Just another day in the life

I actually had a huge rant planned for this posting, but realized that no matter what or how I typed it, it came across wrong. All I can say is that I'm tired of being the go-to person for encouragement, responsibility, sounding off wall, etc. And yet because I'm not the type that complains or rants (often) or just deals with what life throws at me, I have no problems and how nice it must be for me.

Blech.

This is why I knit and stash.

Speaking of stash, guess what came in the mail today?

Free yarn!!!

This is the free skein of yarn from Caron. It's really very soft and lovely. I'm not a big fan of the color, but Baby Girl loves it. Princess can't seem to make up her mind.....

First impression


Second impression

I just need to find a pattern for 185yds of yarn. Any suggestions?

I've also finished off my ear warmers.

Baby Girl makes a MUCH prettier model than me.

The ones of me wearing this are just plain scary. I'll take pics of it when I'm not in grubby clothes and wearing make up. Preferably shellac.

Here are the stats:

Malabrigo Earwarmers

Date Start: 11/20/09
Date End: 12/14/09

Cast on 108sts using size 8 needles, switched to size 6.
Worked Ktbl1,P1 for 2.5" then cast off.

Yarn used was worsted weight Malabrigo. Not sure of the official name, but it's a blue. And while I love the depth of color and softness of this yarn, I'm not a big fan of the single ply. This explains why my Malabrigo watchcap turned into earwarmers.


I also can wear this as a mock turtle neck in place of a scarf. Since it's stretchy, it can come off and on with ease.

Speaking of scarves, I am *this close* to finishing off the one I'm working on. I did a few more rows during gymnastics and I am SO ready to be done with it. It's turning out really nice, but I feel like I've been knitting out miles and miles of a yarn strip.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Taking a breath

I could really use it too, after such a crazy wknd.

While the weather was better on Saturday, I still didn't do so great at the yard sale, but I had fun with my friends. Since the kids were with my sister, the IO wanted to go out to the movies. Of course he did. I was EXHAUSTED so *that* was the night he wanted to go out. Since it hardly ever happens, I agreed and we went to see 2012. Well if I wasn't exhausted before the movie, I was after. I've never liked disaster movies, and while the graphics were amazing, it was still a stressful movie for me.

Sunday we went up to Jacksonville to see the Miami Dolphins play football. While we did have some excitement

we still made the best of it.




AND we won!!!

The best part of the day? A flyover by some military jets from the local Airforce base. Apparently they time it with the Nat'l Anthem and as the song ends, they shoot off fireworks and the jets buzz by. We were in one of the tunnels waiting to get to our seat when they went by and boy was it LOUD!!! And totally awesome!

I also got to work a lot on my scarf. In fact I'm really close to finishing. I should be taking a picture of the finished product soon. Today I also finished off my ear warmers. It's too late to take a decent picture so I should be posting that one tomorrow.

And since I didn't post any sky pictures over the wknd, here is what we saw on our way home from the game.


Hope you all had a nice one!!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Friday Sale-ing

Two days ago we were sweatin' to the 80s. Today we never got out of the FIFTIES!! Yes I realize I won't get much sympathy, but these inconsistent temps have me wearing shorts and tees one day and warm woolies the next. I got good use out of my alpaca socks today since I was helping a friend with her yard sale. Can I tell you how much I hate yard sales? Lots of work for little payout. Today's totals for me? $7.25. If I make another $2.75 I'll be reimbursed the money spent on donuts for the group this AM.

At least I enjoyed the company. AND I got in some good knitting time. I was working on my scarf and had more people comment on my knitting than on the stuff I was selling! No pics to post since I left the scarf at the yard sale. If things don't pick up tomorrow, I should have it done. Not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.


What do you mean you could have used this earlier??

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Yesterday's News

While I'm sorry that the majority of the country is under frigid temps,

at least there is something other than Tiger Woods on the news.

Life is quickly getting busy, I'm helping out a friend with a yard sale this wknd, I've got a Dolphins game coming up, my sister is coming out in 3 days and I'm cooking a turkey dinner. And that's all in less than 2 weeks!

We are also planning a trip to NC which has really inspired me to knit faster to get more things done. However with trying to get the house company ready and going thru things for the yard sale, I'm not getting in as much time as I'd like. Believe it or not, I *did* get some more sewing done.


Bandanas set for the game. I had enough left over to make a fan towel to wave when we score.

Let's hope I get to use it.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Soggy Saturday

We have been getting a good soaking rain for the past few days and I'm beginning to feel a bit waterlogged! We've had almost 2.5" of rain for the month, and considering we're only on day 5 of what is normally considered our dry season, it's a lot!!!

Our sky this AM.

It was abt 58 and windy.

Days like this make you want to pull fabric out

and make some pants.

This is more of a true color of the pants.

I'm really happy with the way they came out. If I had more jean material, I'd make another pair.

Days like this also make you want to cook. This was lunch.

I've got a chicken roasting in the oven right now. Add some rice and green beans and you've got dinner.

Thankfully, the clouds have dissipated and we can see some blue sky.

The next front has gone thru and it's now 56. Cooler but sunny.

I'm now pulling out fabric for #1 Son's I Spy quilt. I'm sorting as I go along, getting rid of fabric as I go. Some will be sold at the yard sale next week, some on ebay and whatever is left will go to the local quilt guild.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Old Habits Die Hard and a Meme

So apparently now that I no longer have to blog everyday, the ideas are coming at me left and right. I was reading Karen's blog yesterday and came across this meme that I thought would be fun.

1. What was the last thing you put in your mouth? Diet Coke

2. Where was your profile picture taken? It's a picture of my cat Hemi taken earlier this year.

3. Can you play Guitar Hero? I've never tried, but I think it would be fun.

4. Name someone who made you laugh today? My friend Denise.

5. How late did you stay up last night and why? Midnight. Was a bit wound up when I went to bed which led to the headache I woke up with. Almost gone, but not quite.

6. If you could move somewhere else, would you? Depends on the day you ask. Probably not leave the area, but I would like a bigger home near a spring fed lake. If I had the money, I would like a cabin in the woods up north that I could live in for a month.

7. Ever been kissed under fireworks? No. I like to watch my fireworks. I'll kiss *after* the fire works, but not during.

8. Which of your friends lives closest to you on your FaceBook list? The IO.

9. Do you believe exes can be friends? Depends on how things were left and how serious the relationship was. However at this point if I ran across any old flame, I've been married long enough to be friends with them.

10. How do you feel about Dr Pepper? It's good, but not my first choice. I'm a Diet Coke kind of gal.

11. When was the last time you cried really hard? Really hard??? Hard to say. I can tear up easily, but I haven't cried really hard in a long time.

12. Who took your profile picture? Me.

13. Who was the last person you took a picture of? #1 Son last night during gymnastics. See?


14. Was yesterday better than today? Well the battery died when we were leaving for gymnastics which left me and #1 Son stranded. The IO had tried faxing something which disconnected the phone line so he never got any of my numerous phone calls trying to get him to pick us up. Had to have a friend get us instead. (this is why I was so wound up last night) Today I woke up with a migraine and not getting much done. So I guess it's six of one/half dozen of another.

15. Can you live a day without TV? I have, but I prefer to have access to some form of monitor (for tv, computer or movies)

16. Are you upset about anything? I can always think of something.

17. Do you think relationships are ever really worth it? Of course they are. Unless you are a psychopath. Then not so much.

18. Are you a bad influence? Umm, I don't think so. But I plead the fifth when helping others buy stash!

19. Night out or night in? I'm in most of the time, so the occasional night out is nice.

20. What items could you not go without during the day? Coffee, computer.

21. Who was the last person you visited in the hospital? Probably #1 Son when he had a reaction to the TamiFlu he was given when we were all oinking.

22. What does the last text message in your inbox say? I don't text, but the last email I got was from JoAnn.com telling me abt a sale on Ott Lights.

23. How do you feel about your life right now? It's exhausting!

24. Do you hate anyone? Not really. There are people I dislike GREATLY, but I would never wish ill will on anyone.

25. If we were to look in your Facebook inbox, what would we find? Nothing. I post more on my wall.

26. Say you were given a drug test right now, would you pass? Oh yes. I don't do well with strong drugs. Caffeine, aspirin and tylenol would be found right now. And occasionally they'd find a xanax, but not often.

27. Has anyone ever called you perfect before? Not that I can recall. Amazing, yes. Perfect, no. (lol)

28. What song is stuck in your head? The theme song from The Princess Bride. The rugrats are watching it right now. Inconceivable!

29. Someone knocks on your window at 2:00 a.m., a secret lover or George Clooney? Ok so who comes up with these questions?!? If somebody is knocking at my window at 2am, I'm calling the cops!

30.Wanna have grandkids before you’re 50? No. #1 Son would only be 18. Possible, yes. Desirable? No.

31. Name something you have to do tomorrow? Right now, nothing in particular. I was going to finish getting stuff together for a yard sale on Saturday, but it's a 70% chance of rain so it's being postponed until next week.

32. Do you think too much or too little? Way too much! Can't shut the brain off, esp at 5am!

33. Do you smile a lot? I think so.

Bonus Round...

34. How many hours a day do you spend on the computer? More than I want to share!

35. If you could be anyone else for a day, who would you be? I really have no desire to be anybody else.

36. Facebook or Twitter? Facebook.

37. Chicken or Beef? Both, but I tend to eat chicken more.

38. Mac or PC? PC.

39. Have you ever punched anyone in the face? No.

40. Last music received or purchased? I don't buy music anymore. The IO and #1 Son do all the downloading these days. If I had to think back, it would probably be the soundtrack for The Phantom of the Opera.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Surprise!!

Bet you didn't think I'd blog today, huh? After a month of *having* to blog, I didn't think so either. However, it has gotten me back into the swing of blogging, so while I don't plan on blogging *every* day, I do plan on blogging more.

What made me want to blog today?? Why free yarn, that's what!!!! Caron Simply Soft is having a yarn giveaway. Send them 3 labels of Caron yarn and they will send you a free skein of Caron Country, a blend of wool and acrylic yarn. Go here for the details. I'm mailing out my info today.

Meanwhile Lucy contemplates her next action......

Does this thing self dispense or do I have to poke it?