December 31, 2007

Knitted Gifts

I finished my Sister's poncho in time for Christmas, sans fringe. She decided she liked it better without the fringe, since it was already long. I think I should have knitted it on smaller needles, especially since the collar came out really big. She likes it though, so I won't worry about it too much. She also took some wonderful pictures of our Christmas morning celebration. Check them out at her blog.
I also made a pair of socks for my Dad. I didn't have them done by Christmas, so I gave him one sock and finished the mate the next day. The pattern is Plain Old Ragg Socks from Never Knit Your Man a Sweater* *unless you've got the ring. They were very easy, and I'm extremely pleased with the result since this was the first pair of socks I've ever knitted. (I did do a 'class sock' from Sensational Knitted Socks.)Next knitting projects:
Shawl for myself - with purple yarn!
Coasters with the leftover sock yarn - it's feltable and I really really really want to try needle felting.

Sophie Cloth Doll

I made this doll for my cousin in NC for her first birthday. The pattern is McCalls 4186 and is part of a set of six patterns. I would not recommend these for beginner sewers - they looked like good 'teaching' patterns, and very simple. I had a lot of trouble with what I've done so far, and I'm very glad I have some experience in making dolls and doll clothes. The middle picture is a nightgown, and the far right is a collar that goes over the nightgown. These were Christmas presents I couldn't blog about until now. The heart on the collar was done with my Mom's embroidery sewing machine; I didn't have time to embroider it by hand.

California Package

Remember the pretty presents from a couple weeks ago? Well, I can finally show you what was in them! The teddy bear (pattern here) is made from Bernat's soft boucle, in Softest Straw. I used Misty Shades for the face and bow. The dress is for my cousin's doll, which is the size of a newborn. The fabric came entirely from Mom's stash. The flowers on the skirt were appliqu├ęd on. The ball is for my aunt and uncle, and you can see a better picture here.

December 26, 2007

A Year of Blessings

Blessings from the past year:
  1. Medical Science. If not for advancements in medicine, my Dad would not be with us today. He has Multiple Myeloma, an incurable blood cancer, and kidney failure. I'm also thankful for the technology that allows his dialysis (for his kidneys) to be done at home, instead of at the hospital 3 times a week.
  2. God's grace, giving our family the strength to keep going through the difficult times. Sending us encouragement when it was needed the most, and the ability to look back over the past two years and see how God has used events for His glory, even though it was not always evident at the time.
  3. Music. Music has always been a huge part of my life. Throughout the past few years, whenever I've been really down, God sends me a song (or an entire CD) of music to encourage me. My current song is 'Don't Let Me Miss the Glory'.
  4. God's Glory. The song mentioned above has really impacted my life. I first heard it at the Gaither Homecoming Give It Away concert in October. Gordon Mote sang, and it was accompanied by beautiful pictures of lighthouses, oceans, sunsets, and nature pictures. I remember thinking at the time that it was an interesting selection of pictures to show, since Gordon Mote is blind, and how do you describe something so glorious to someone who has never seen anything in his life? As I was pondering this some weeks later, it dawned on me that no matter what your limitation in life, whether you're blind, deaf, or have a chronic illness like fibromyalgia or CFS, no matter what you think might keep you from it, if you really truly desire to see God's Glory, He won't let you miss it. It has since become my prayer that I won't miss the glory, and God has answered that prayer in more ways than I could ever imagine.
  5. Being a helper to my family. Within the past year or two God has blessed me with a spirit of giving, and I discover daily how much more blessed it is to give than to receive. (Acts 30:35b)
  6. Family. They accept me in spite of my shortcomings. I'm especially thankful that my sister and I have grown a little closer, and do more things together than we used to.
  7. Friends. I've never had very many, but the few I do have are very precious to me.
  8. Gardens. It's so wonderful to see everything grow, and to enjoy the veggies and flowers. I'm amazed at how a tiny seed can grow into a huge healthy plant!
So that's what I'm thankful for. What are you thankful for?
Giving Thanks~

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone! I probably won't post until next year, so enjoy your holiday, and don't lose sight of the 'Reason for the Season'.
John 3:16 - For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believeth on Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

December 17, 2007

Weekly Goal List

Goals for this last week:

  1. Start (and hopefully finish) third tatted ornament cover -- I got it started.
  2. Finish doll outfit #1, start #2 --Finished #1.
  3. Wrap gifts and mail package #1 --Wrapped Gifts
This week: Finish all Christmas gifts!!! That's 1 sewn, 3 tatted, 2 knitted, and if I have time, finish sewing a dress for myself.
Here's a picture of the gifts headed for CA. Sorry I can't show you what's inside yet.
Merry Christmas!

December 12, 2007

2007 Projects

I'm working on making my completed projects list in the sidebar a link list. Here are some pictures of the knitting and sewing organizers.

This is my knitting organizer. The pattern is Simplicity 5829. It was pretty simple to put together. The hardest part was the French Bias Binding. I couldn't find a link for the pattern - it must be out of print.

This is my Sewing Organizer. The pattern was McCalls 4274, and was much more difficult. I did make the sewing machine organizer from this pattern, and that was pretty simple. If I made this again, I would change the top pocket to face another direction, or put it on the bottom and move the elastic to the top. Whatever I put in it always falls out. Other than that, it's working pretty well.


Weekly Goal List

I put off writing this post so that I could finish this tatted ornament cover.
Despite all my mistakes and having to 'retro-tat' {tatting in reverse; i.e. ripping out} several times, it came out pretty good. I also got to try this joining technique, and it worked out really well.

Also this week, I found a teddy bear pattern, a skein of yarn, and started knitting. I finished it this evening. Since it's a gift, I won't post a picture just yet. I'll try and post it on Ravelry, though.

My Ravelry invite came about a week ago, and I meant to blog about it, but got too busy. Ravelry is a wonderful way to connect with other knitters and crocheters, and keep track of your projects, books, yarns, needles and hooks. So far my favorite feature is the needle/hook inventory. It made it so much easier when I needed to know if I had size 8 needles for my teddy bear project. {Somehow I've managed to acquire 5 pairs of size 8 needles} If you're on ravelry and want to look me up, I'm simplestitcher.

Back to my goals, I got one of two items mended. The poncho has been put aside until I get my packages sent. I started the first doll outfit, and am nearly done; it just needs sleeves and a hem.

Goals for this week:
  1. Start (and hopefully finish) third tatted ornament cover
  2. Finish doll outfit #1, start #2
  3. Wrap gifts and mail package #1
These bookmarks are for some of my friends. You can't really see it in the picture, but the upper and lower bookmarks on the left have roses engraved on them. I got them from Fire Mountain Gems. The charms for them came from Let's Bead. The bookmarks and charms for the two on the right are from Beads 'N Things. All the beads are from my Mom's collection.

Happy Crafting!

December 10, 2007


Blogger has been making 'improvements', and made a terrible mess of the comment feature. I was completely unaware of this until chigiy at The Gardeners Anonymous Blog wrote a post complaining about it.
I have changed the comment setting to 'registered users' It allows anyone with a Google/Blogger, AOL/AIM, LiveJournal, TypeKey, or WordPress account to leave a comment. There's also an OpenID option for blogs not hosted by any of the above. The downside to this 'feature' is that anonymous comments are not allowed. I'll be emailing blogger about this, but in the meantime, I'm going to add an e-mail me button so those of you without blogs can contact me.

EDIT: In playing around a little more, I discovered that the 'anyone' option has OpenID and allows anonymous comments. I guess I won't have to email blogger after all!


December 3, 2007


Looking back over the last few posts, I realized that they are devoid of pictures. To remedy this problem I've added 2 pictures to my Black Friday post, 2 gauge swatches to Yarn Shop Visit, and a picture of the progress (or lack thereof) on my second tatted ornament cover to my Weekly Goal List.

Today I spent my afternoon working on a sewing project. It went pretty well until I sewed the lace on the collar wrong. it was a real pain to rip out because I used a 1.5 stitch length. After I finished ripping, I played around with Mom's Cuttlebug for a while. It works similarly to Sizzix and Cricut, but is less expensive than the other two machines. Here's a picture of the things I made:
I took closeups and uploaded them to myphotoalbum. I will add detailed information about how I made each item later this week.

Happy Crafting~

Weekly Goal List

Last week's goals & how far I got:
  1. Cut out fabric - the fabric is all cut out, and waiting to be sewn.
  2. Finish collar on poncho -I got to the neck/shoulder division (about 12 rows)
  3. Finish tatted ornament cover - When I started the second round, I had a difficult time figuring out how to connect the 2 rounds. I have finished the first pattern repeat.
  4. Tackle mending pile - the mending pile was duly tackled and the most important items mended. I missed two items; one was not in the mending pile, and the other simply needs a button loop replaced.

This week's goals
  1. 11 rows on poncho
  2. Find knitted teddy bear pattern
  3. Finish ornament cover, and start the next one
  4. Mend overlooked items
  5. Start sewing doll clothes
I managed to prioritize my list of things to make before Dec. 14'th. I will be sure to take pictures and post them after the packages have been received.

So many things to do and so little time! I haven't even started my Christmas baking yet!

December 1, 2007

Yarn Shop Visit

Spirit Work knitting and designs is one of my favorite LYS. My other two favorites are Knit-n-Purl, and The Village Yarn & Fiber Shop. I went to Spirit Work on Thursday, and got some help with my sister's poncho, and some advice about a project for one of my cousins. They were so nice and helpful. I'll probably go again in January (when I have some money to spend) and buy some yarn for a shawl.

My current list of items to knit before Christmas is:
1: My Sister's poncho
2: Stuffed animal for a Cousin
3: Gift for my Dad. (hint: it takes dpns)

Here are some gauge swatches of 2 yarns I'm considering using:

I've been trying to sort my Christmas projects so that the ones that need to be mailed will get done first. So far it hasn't been very easy, and I'm only sending 3 boxes. That'll be my Sunday afternoon project - figure out who's getting what, and make a plan for how to get it done. The deadline for sending them parcel post (and having them arrive before Christmas) is Dec. 15'th.

I'd better get stitching!