New Crafty Obsessions

December 10, 2008 at 12:31 pm (7 cities crafters, cooking, crochet, family) (, , , , )

My older daughter has stopped napping in the afternoon.  Sadly, that was my major crafting time (or napping time, depending on the day).  I love handing out with her, but I miss my creative time.  Despite the fact that my crafty time is limited, I’ve managed to find two new obsessions.

My friend Amanda has opened Bake It Pretty, her new online shop.  I ordered some cookie cutters, a Vintage Village cupcake kit, and the Best-Ever Cupcake Icing kit.  It arrived last Friday, and I used the decorating kit to ice my agave cupcakes with Vegan Chocolate Buttercream.  This is my first attempt at icing a cake.  Not bad considering I only had half an hour before our 7 Cities Crafters holiday party.
First frosted cupcakes

The holiday party was lots of fun.  Everyone brought delicious food.  After we were stuffed, we had a holiday gift exchange.  I scored some beauutiful bird ornaments.  I can’t wait to hang them in my office/craft area.  I made some peppermint sugar scrub and a Rose for Mother pouf.  I spent a lot of time making the back of the rose look pretty, and then ended up covering it with more crochet.  Hmmm, I guess I should have read the pattern first.  The pouf is a very quick crochet project.  The hardest part is starting the slip stitches for the petals.
Rose for Mother

After all the gifts were opened, we settled in for a crafting workshop.  We had two classes:  embroidery and needle felting.  I’ve embroidered before, so I went with needle felting.  It is so fun (except for when you stab your fingers).  One of the hot gifts of the night was a sewn hedgehog pincushion.  I wanted to recreate it in needle felting.  Here is my little guy.
Needle felted hedgehog
Needle felted hedgehog
I think he’s pretty cute, and I love how quickly he took shape.  Since I’ve got tons of roving around the house, I can’t wait to make some more critters.

I’ve still owe y’all a Stitches post.  To distract you from that, I’ll leave you with a shot of Tulip in the leaves:
Tulip in the leaves

Advertisements

Permalink 2 Comments

Hay and Sunshine

November 3, 2008 at 7:59 pm (crochet, family, farmgirl, knitting) (, , )

On the knitting front, I’ve worked some on the second Tasha sock.  I’m getting close to the end of the leg.  The prospect of a heel flap and turn is always exciting.  I’ve also worked on the Mormor shawl.  And I’ve got a pic to prove it:
Mormor Shawl
Pretty, no? It is the Mormor Pattern in Lime and Violet Oops! Dark. I believe the yarn is the bamboo blend.  Little Turtle Mittens for Tulip are also on the needles.  I whipped up one mitt except thumb last Sunday.  I haven’t picked it up since because I was distracted by crochet.

The Granny Mitts from Chez Plum are too easy to make.  I’ve almost got a full pair (sans buttons) in just a couple of hours.  I used Karaoke and a tiny hook to get the right size.  I’d endorse these for quick holiday gifts.  I was going to take a pic, but then I realized I seamed the cuff of the second mitt.  D’oh!

The family and I headed to the Hunt Club Farm Harvest Fair yesterday.  The weather was absolutely perfect.  And there weren’t very many people.  The girls both rode ponies (actually, Tulip rode a miniature horse) and jumped in the bouncy houses.  They wanted to ride the ferris wheel, but I said no.  Since only Rosebud is the correct height, I didn’t want to leave Tulip out.  Plus, I hate ferris wheels.  We even took a hayride around the farm.  Rosebud especially loved the pile of hay.
Rosebud plays in the hay

Permalink Leave a Comment

The Joys of Playing

October 10, 2008 at 5:44 pm (family)

I consider myself an intelligent person.  But sometimes, you just need to let go of things you think you know.  I took the kidlets to the park yesterday.  The park had a nice play area and swings.  I knew I’d have fun just watching the girls play.  But I was wrong.

Rosebud (my blog nickname for my older daughter) hasn’t figured out swings yet, you know, the leg motion for swings that lets you go higher and higher.  I tried explaining it, but she just didn’t understand.  So I sat down on the swing next to her to show her.  After figuring out the entire swingset wasn’t going to collapse, I started swinging.  And then I remembered how much I always loved to swing.

At my elementary school, we had an enormous swingset (at least for a 5-8 year old).  Our greatest joy was swinging really high and leaping from the swing.  I can’t imagine why none of us broke anything, especially since these were the days long before “safe” playground design with soft surfaces underneath.  Few things match the feel of swinging back and forth, higher and higher.

Once we finished on the swings, I decided to play tag with Rosebud and Tulip (my blog nickname for my younger daughter).  Sure I wasn’t dressed for it and hadn’t planned on it.  But who cares?  We had a fantastic time, laughing and running around.  This morning, one of the first things they talked about was playing tag with mommy.  So you know what we did today after preschool?  We played tag again.  And I think we’ll have to do it tomorrow, too.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Bad Blogger, No Cookies

April 23, 2008 at 3:32 pm (crochet, family, knitting) (, , )

So it’s been almost two weeks.  It took me awhile to figure out why I was feeling blue.  The 15th would have been my grandmother’s 88th birthday.  I spent the whole weekend before dreading it, remembering last year when she had a big party.  Remembering all the other birthdays and special things that made it her day.

The rest of the week went in a blur.  The kids and I went to the Norfolk Botanical Gardens on Thursday.  The weather was cool but sunny.  The gardens are gorgeous.  We live about ten minutes away from them, and yet, we’d never been.  Just a few minutes into our walk, I saw the pair of nesting bald eagles.  Then, as I looked down the path, I saw a good friend with whom I’d lost touch.  After much hugging and introducing her to my girls, we set off down the path to find more blossoms, trees, and fountains.

Girls at play

"Earth" Fountain
Fountain

Bald Eagle Nest
Bald Eagle nest (the first I’ve ever seen)
Fiberjinx and I hit the Norfolk Zoo on Friday. Sadly, the rest of the Tidewater community did, too. I counted five different school systems. And it was hot. On the upside, I got to cuddle Fiberjinx’s babysaur. That made it all worthwhile.

And then, suddenly, it was Passover. (Amazing how it can sneak up on one like that) We celebrated our first seder at my in-laws and the second at home. Rosebud does a great version of the two questions (I suppose she’ll learn the last two next year.) And we had more kiddo artwork and sederware than we could display.

We’re halfway through the holiday now. So far we’ve finished Granola-1 batch and Vegetable Kugel (aka Muffins if you are in the preschool set)-2 batches, in addition to other things. The biggest kid hit so far were cottage cheese pancakes. I just made up another batch of granola. No cookies, though.

Knitting Gamer Girl
Knitting Gamer Grrrrl

Old School versus New School
Old and New School Gaming

Long before the holiday, I got this adorable notebook and cute magnets from Greenbeanbaby. It sums up what’s been going on lately: knitting and Xbox. My game of choice is Mass Effect. Sure, Husband bought it for himself. But I’m hooked. I’m level 40 or so Vanguard.

Pi Shawl

The Pi Shawl is coming along nicely. I finally got a shot that is close to the actual color. I have 288 stitches on the needles, and I’m halfway to the next increase section. I love how easy and quick the project is (for lace).

Flower for Rosebud
Pattern: Flower from Dream Toys by Claire Garland
Yarn: Valley Yarns Longmeadow

These are the pieces of the Flower from Dream Toys. Rosebud has picked the colors, and I think I’ll let her decide how to put the petals together.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Valentine’s Day Musings

February 14, 2008 at 8:31 pm (cooking, family, knitting) (, , , , )

I am still kicking around. Surprisingly. My mom was up at the beginning of February. Then, I did some fabulous test knitting for Simona’s Designs. Here’s the finished project:

Bell Sleeve Shrug

Pattern:  Bell Sleeve Shrug
Yarn:  Blue Sky Alpacas Organic Cotton in Willow
Needles:  Sz 8

And you can get your own Bell Sleeve Shrug pattern in her etsy shop. I think my girls need one of everything in her shop. I just need more time to knit them.

Project Spectrum 3.0 has begun. In the spirit of Fire, I’m working on Giselle in Bristol Red Silky Wool from WEBS.

Giselle

The yarn is soft and gorgeous. I’m starting the bust band (just had to type that) today. Not bad for a week of knitting.

Also on the Fire theme, I’ve also become hooked on Blood Orange tea from Adagio Teas. Look at that color!
Blood Orange Tea

Blood Orange Tea from Adagio teas

It reminds me of kool aid but way better. Best of all, the tea is herbal and has no caffeine. Thanks, Amber, for introducing me to this tea.  I think I’ll try a tea-along for Project Spectrum.  I can’t think of a better way to keep the elements in everyday life.

Speaking of Amber, she came over Sunday night for a great Project Runway marathon. For dinner, we had Tofu Apple Spring Rolls (sans spring roll wrappers) and Asparagus from the Vegan Lunchbox with Rice Pudding for dessert. Yum! We still have five episodes to go, but we’re going to celebrate Presidents’ Day with lots of Project Runway craziness.

This morning I got to celebrate with yummy Lower Fat Banana Bread from the Veganomicon and snow. Yes, snow. It’s been in the 50’s and 60’s all week, but this morning there was snow on my deck. Bizarre. As long as I’ve lived in the Hampton Roads area, I’m still baffled by the weather.

Permalink Leave a Comment