Saturday, December 31, 2011

Goodbye to 2011 - A Few Thoughts

No New Year's resolutions for me save one: To maintain all of my close and wonderful relationships with friends and family, and to heal those relationships that are damaged. Life is too short to carry emotional baggage. Better to be free to enjoy life and love.

Happy New Year to all!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Justin Claus











Merry Christmas! Justin trying on
the Santa Hat with beard.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Angry Bird Ornament


We attended the Christmas party at the dive shop today and I made an ornament to take along to add to the shop's Christmas tree. A lot of the shop folks are addicted to Angry Birds, so I made an ornament fashioned after the red bird. I hope that it's recognizable.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

 

Here is a quick photo we snapped of my dear grandson wearing the Santa cap and beard. We had to take it quick and so did not have time to adjust it. He wasn't totally in the mood for posing. So a little straightening would have had the beard and mustache positioned correctly. But he's cute as a button anyway! I just love him so.
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Santa Hat with Beard




























I really must see if I can get my grandson to model this one for me. If so, I'll post another photo.
I've listed this for sale on my Etsy website.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Wishing all of my friends and family a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. Be thankful for all of our blessings, large and small.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Update















Got my return to work date - still working on hats. I sent for a pattern book to make items using the crocodile stitch. I have seen in showing up in one of the ads on my blog, and I'm anxious to try it. Looks interesting.

Meanwhile, here is my newest hat, soon to be listed on Etsy.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

10 Petal Wraparound Flower for Embellishment





I have been making a lot of hats lately, and like to use buttons to attach the flowers or bows. I had a very large decorative button to use and wondered if I could use a method similar to a wrap style rose to make a flower to wrap around the button. Here is my method and photos of the finished products.

Chain 22. In the 4th ch from the hook, sl st. Ch 3, skip the next ch and sl st into the following ch across to the end. You should have 10 ch 3 spaces. Turn and into each ch 3 space, you will hdc, 3 dc and ch 2, sl st back into the ch 3 space. You can choose to sl st into each consecutive ch 3 space or hdc directly into the next space. I've done it both ways. You will end up with 10 petals. Finish off and leave a longish end for sewing. You may also crochet leaves onto this petal chain if you choose.

For the leaves, with wrong side facing, slip stitch with green yarn into the back of the base of the petal chain, ch 7 , and slip stitch into 2nd chain from the hook, sc into next ch, hdc into next ch, dc into next 2 ch. Turn the piece keeping the right side of the leaf facing you and work your way back up the other side of the original ch 7 in the reverse order - dc, dc, hdc, hdc, sc, and then sl st at the top to join. You can make your starting chain as long as you like, as long as you use sl st, sc, hdc, dc and even trc if you like - keeping a leaf-shape, working in reverse on the opposite side of the ch.

Sew your button onto your crocheted piece, and then wrap the petal chain around the button, arranging the petal and leaf(ves) to your liking. Once you have them arranged, you can use the long end of the petal chain to stitch the chain securely into place.

Please contact me if you have any questions.




Wednesday, November 2, 2011

2 More Hats

I enjoy making hats. Hopefully, I can list a few on Etsy. The woman who ordered 5 toddler hats from me was pleased with her items. I'm glad.
Here is one I made for my grandson:













Here is a hat I made for a friend fighting cancer:

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Back in the Loop Again

Back to crochet again and hopefully, back to work soon. Never thought I'd say that, but it will be nice to have a regular paycheck coming in.

I messed around with some yellow and pink yarn, to try to fulfill an order for a child's hat in those colors and I made a "cupcake" hat. I took it to show my daughter-in-law and my grandson grabbed it up. My DIL promises not to take him outside in that hat. I don't want anyone laughing at my sweetheart because he's wearing a girl's hat! But I left it there for him to play with, since he loves cupcakes so much. I've already started another since that one was somewhat large for the child it's intended for.

Here's a photo:


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Hats I've Made
































I've been working on some hats by special request: Here are a few.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Posts Are Few and Far Between

Sorry I haven't been keeping up the blog or doing new patterns, but I'm still not feeling well. Hopefully these next two tests go well and I'll finally be able to get this monster of a virus out of my system once and for all.

In the meantime please enjoy this little gem I found on you tube. Love Simon's Cat!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Under The Weather

Haven't been feeling well with the upper respiratory infection from hell. 4 rounds of antibiotics, inhalers, steroids, and no work for almost a month. I still feel like I've had a truck parked on my chest, my voice is hoarse, and I'm coughing nonstop. And that's showing some improvement. I don't know what this is, but once it's gone, I hope never to see it again!

I haven't even had the strength - not even the inclination - to pick up yarn and hook. I would have loved to have taken advantage of the time off, but exhaustion has left me sleeping away most of the day.

Yuck...

Monday, August 29, 2011

A WelcomeTo The Family - To Nicole

Below is the welcome speech I made at the wedding - I'm so happy to have Nicole as a daughter-in-law.

I would like to say a few words on behalf of the family.
Wayne and I did as every other parent does – we tried to raise our sons to be the best that they can be. We have loved and supported them, tried to guide them onto right paths, and hoped that they would grow to be kind, honest and caring men, capable of making the right decisions throughout their lives. I think that we’ve succeeded. We have a couple of great sons, and we are very proud of them both. On this, Dan’s wedding day, I hope that he can see how very proud we are .
To my husband - I look back across the years and I remember what a good father you’ve been, Wayne. I see the benefits the boys have reaped from your love and affection. In fact, I see all your great qualities in Dan today. He has become the same wonderful person you are. I thank you for giving me these wonderful sons.
I cannot tell you how pleased we are that Dan found someone to love and spend his life with – someone who shares the same wonderful qualities as Dan. Nicole is a beautiful young woman, with a sweet, generous and loving nature. We have come to love her and we welcome her into our family. I am so moved when I see her with Dan and Justin – what a beautiful family they are. I thank her for our darling grandson, the sunshine in our lives. And we bless her for bringing along such a delightful extended family. Jeanann, Nick, June, Michele, Chris, aunts, uncles and cousins – all of you are welcomed into our family. But be forewarned – our family tree does have a few nuts on it.
Jeanann and Nick – you’ve obviously done a terrific job as parents – we can see it reflected in your children. I sincerely hope that you don’t mind if I call Nicole my daughter as well as my daughter-in-law. I love my boys but I’ve always wanted a girl!
Dan and Nicole We certainly wish you a long and happy marriage. As much as we would like it to be perfect for you, be prepared for a rough spot or two. Just have the wisdom to lean on one another for strength, and trust that all will work out for the best. Believe in God and know that he will take care of you. Believe in each other. Always remember the things that made you fall in love with each other. Continue to be the wonderful parents you are to Justin – you are already off to a great start. You are lucky to have him and he is lucky to have you!
Please raise a glass to Dan and Nicole and let us wish them a long happy life, filled with love, happiness, health and success!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

It's Official!







Hurricane Irene be damned! We had a wedding in spite of her. What a wonderful day. Yes, we had rain, we had wind, and we had a fine time. I am so happy for my son and his wife. What a lovely couple they are. I wish them a long happy marriage filled with love, health and success!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Tomorrow's The Big Day

Tomorrow is my son's wedding day. He's marrying a beautiful young woman, mother to my grandson and we can't be happier. We may have a hurricane to deal with, but it won't ruin our day.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Just a Short Note...

I've been under the weather. Bronchitis and asthma has me feeling pretty low right now. I finished 4 projects for the grange fair, which is running right now. I think this is the first year I won't be able to make it there to see how my projects fared. I'll have to wait until Sunday when I pick them up.

One week until my dear son and his fiancee are hitched - yippee! I sure hope I'm over this "bug" by then.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Long Time

My goodness, it's been a while since I posted. There's been a lot going on. I'm gearing up for the needlework competition at Grange Fair in August, as well as DS's wedding (not listed in order of importance, but in chronological order). My fair projects are coming along nicely.

I can't believe how time is flying by. I wish I had back some of the time I wished away as a kid - "Gee, I wish summer would get here already" and "I wish it was Christmas".

I've been thinking about my parents - both of them gone now. I'm sad that my mom never got to meet my dear little grandson. How she would have enjoyed his antics. I remember how she loved my two boys when they were small. She left us when they were 5 and 8. I wonder if they still remember her.

I spent time with my grandson today, sitting with him until his mom got home from work. What a boy! He played with his trucks and tractors, we played catch, and then he curled up on the couch next to me and we read "Green Eggs and Ham". He sure loves Sam-I-Am. After that, he took a nap.

A little bit of sunshine...

Monday, July 4, 2011

One Grange Fair Project Ready



It isn't the best photo. It could have been a little straighter when I snapped it. It's the "baby shower" dress done in a different yarn and different colors.

Time to move onto the next project.

Happy Birthday, America!







Justin and PopPop enjoying the fireworks on July 3. In one of the videos below, you can hear Justin shouting "Purple! Purple!" He wanted purple fireworks!


Monday, June 20, 2011

Baby Shower

The baby shower was today and my boss loved the dress! I'm very happy that she did. I really enjoyed making this style dress and I think I might try making it in a finer yarn to make a smaller size. I think I'd like to send a few to the NICU unit along with the hats and blankets I have here to send.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Dress is Finished!

I also purchased the gift bag and tissue wrap today too.

It's finished and I'm very happy with the way it turned out. I think I'll be making another as a grange fair project, and then list it for sale on etsy.

The color isn't quite right on my monitor, so I'm not sure how it looks on yours. The yarn used is Cotton Tots Terracotta.
I also fashioned a headband for it - not part of the pattern, but I tried to match the stitches as well as I could. I hope she likes it!

What a Great Pre-Summer Day!

I went out to run errands this morning. Driving with the windows down, I passed Sesame Place and could hear the squeals of laughter from the kids inside. Sounds like they were having a great time! Weather wasn't the best - the sky was gray and overcast, but no rain.

I'm thinking that I'm going to have to call the dress shop next week. I ordered a dress for my son's wedding and thought it would be in by now. I haven't received a call from them telling me that is. Maybe they couldn't get that style anymore? I hope so. It really was a nice dress.

I am almost finished with the baby dress. I have 5 more rows to do and buttons to sew on it. I'll need to go out looking for a gift bag and tissue paper. The shower is on Monday. Nothing like waiting until the last minute, huh?

Have I told you how much I love my Kindle? Best invention ever. I have read more books on the e-reader than I've read since I got out of school (and that's been quite a while!). I just splurged and bought the most fantastic cover for it. It's from Oberon Design - carved leather cover in Marigold. The design is called Hollyhocks. Only the best for my "baby"! LOL!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Wedding Weekend

We attended a wedding this weekend. My dear son was the best man and my grandson was a ring bearer. Both were extremely good looking in their tuxedos!

Weather was chilly and sprinkly off and on, but it was a nice outdoor ceremony and all had a good time.




I finished crocheting two hats and I have two more to finish. These were special requests for 2 girls, and I'm working on 2 adult hats in the same style, one in olive green and one in brown. I'll post photos of those when finished.



Saturday, May 28, 2011

Memorial Day Weekend

Taking a moment to remember all the armed forces servicemen and women who have given their lives for our country. And sending blessings to those fortunate enough to return, and prayers to those currently serving. Thank you, all.

Tomorrow will be a big day. My future daughter-in-law and I will be going shopping for a mother-of-the-groom dress for me. I heard from Nicole's mom and she just purchased her dress, in an almost-navy blue color.

Trying to figure out what to make for dinner tonight. Maybe meat loaf.

It's quiet right now, so I think I'll get back to work on the baby dress I'm making. Photos of my version will follow when it's finished. Photo shown is from the free pattern - link above.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Why I Love Amazon

I've been looking for a long time for a pattern I had a long time ago, but misplaced somewhere. It may be in my attic in a bag of yarn, or I may have left it where it ended up mixed with newspapers and ended up with the recycling. I've looked high and low for it, and even posted on a crochet forum board asking if someone might have it and be willing to trade for it. No luck. Until Monday...

On a lark, I searched Amazon for the pattern I was looking for - Charming Cherubs and Angel Pets. I found it! An out-of-print pattern, and it was $3.95! Hallelujah! I received it today, it's in very good condition and once I finish my current projects, I plan on making a doll or two.

I also scored another out-of-print pattern in high demand - Crochet the Birth of Christ. It's the pattern I used to make my prized Nativity set. I can now make another so that one day, each of my sons will have a set of their own.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

SHUT UP! I’M COUNTING STITCHES! (Or Why I’m Socially Challenged…)

Due to the fact that I need to drop dear son off at work so early, I often arrive at work 45 minutes before the start of my work day. I call this my spare time and I like to crochet. Sometimes employees will wander through the cafeteria and stop and ask me questions about what I’m doing. I know – I should be glad that people find my work interesting. I don’t mind when someone stops and asks a question or two, and I can share my enjoyment of crochet. But then, there are those OTHER inquisitive folks. Not satisfied with just a couple of short questions or comments, but they’ll continue to ask questions or give me a rundown of everyone they’ve ever known who “knits”. (People!! one hook – crochet: two needles – knitting!) I guess my level of annoyance is in proportion to the complexity of the pattern I’m working on at the time.

I remember one of my most distressing encounters with a curious passer-by. I was trying to crochet a Piglet – it was a difficult pattern with lots of increases, decreases, slip stitches and working beyond the end of rounds and moving markers to start your counts over again. I took a seat in the cafeteria far away from all distractions, sitting alone at a table by the window. I was repeatedly interrupted for 30 minutes by the same co-worker passing back and forth asking questions. Mind you – this woman was supposed to be sitting at her desk answering the telephone! Woman: “Oooh, what are you making?” Me: “Piglet” and shows picture from the pattern book. Woman walks away but comes back 5 minutes later – “Oh, did you make any of those other things in that book?” “Yes – Pooh, Eeyore and Tigger”. A few more questions and she leaves again – I start frogging back to where I was before I lost my place. What seems like 10 seconds later – she’s baaaaack – “How long will it take to make one of those?” Thinking to myself “The rest of my friggin’ life if you keep asking questions!” Saying out loud “Depends on how much time I get to work on it – anywhere from 1 to 2 weeks in my spare time”. Woman walks away – frog, frog, frog. She makes a few more passes and comments and I frog a few more times. By now, I’m holding my work in a death grip and gritting my teeth. But I stick with it and I think I finally have it – oh wait! Here she comes again! At that point, I stuffed the project in my carry bag and gave it up as a lost cause. At least while at work.

Would the average person walk up to someone sitting at an easel, painting in the park, and keep asking them questions?? I don’t think so. If I sit next to someone reading a book, I wouldn’t expect them to tell me what they are reading and what other books they’ve read and how long it takes them to finish a book. If I see someone wearing headphones and listening to music, I leave them alone. Is it just me? Am I so anti-social?

My good friends in my previous work location knew that I shared a table with them at lunch, but I didn’t take an active part in the conversation. I was listening, but I was busy counting stitches while crocheting. My friends knew that and they understood it. Maybe it’s rude to crochet while with other people – I don’t know. My friends were always aware that crochet is my passion and they never thought it was wrong for me to keep working on my project.

I don’t want to sound like a misanthrope. I really don’t mind a short interruption now and then. I do enjoy telling people about crochet and have even taught a few people how to crochet after they’ve seen me work. But when “Sorry to bother you” leads to a lengthy work-related conversation – well, there goes my crochet time and I’m not a happy camper. I can tell them that I don’t start work until 8 a.m., but does it matter? Noooooooooo…

I’ve had employees approach saying “I know you’re at lunch but…” and off they go, requesting job letters and vacation totals and asking if their uncle’s best friend’s cousin’s next door neighbor can come in to fill out a job application. I’ve tried eating lunch and/or crocheting in my car. They’ll knock on the window. I’ve had people stop me in Walmart’s yarn department at 8:30 in the evening and ask me benefits questions. Why do people think I’m on call 24/7?

Does anyone else have this problem? Am I just being a grumpy old woman? I guess I need to learn to be more tolerant. Or find a better place to hide.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day


Wishing all moms a Happy Day! I had a nice visit with my grandson. He stayed overnight here with us. He's such a sweet and happy child. No trouble at all. We really enjoyed his visit.

His lovely mom just lost her grandmother and I offered to take Justin to give her some time to rest.

My younger son treated me to dinner and my older son and his fiancee - Justin's parents - gave me a framed picture of Justin and a lovely pair of topaz earrings!

What a wonderful day it was!

I finished up a couple of projects that have been sitting in limbo lately. One was a pink tam hat that needed a finishing touch. I crocheted a flower accent for it. I also crocheted some flowers for a baby hat that I am sending to a new mom for her little one. It's my "Dreaded Spiral Seam Hat" - I've made interchangeable flowers for it so that it can be worn with many different outfits. And I finished a little lavender hat that I've been working on. I improvised a scalloped brim for it, having done the hat all in half-double crochet. I really like the way it turned out. Justin was kind enough to model it for me. Thank God he's so small! I won't get this kind of cooperation when he gets older, I'm sure! That hat is finished. At the point I took the photo, I had a loose end that needed to be woven in. This hat will be listed on my Etsy website.

Hope you all had a wonderful day!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Donation Weekend

The company I work for recently had a sale of empty cosmetic bags for employees. I was able to purchase about 50 or so and I'm going to mail them this weekend to Hope Lodge in Hershey Pennsylvania. I called ahead to verify that these bags are something that they can use. The staff at the lodge said that they will be happy to give a bag to their patients upon receipt, and 50 bags will be enough to make sure that each current patient has one and that future patients will also be able to receive one. I thought the bags might be useful for patients to keep their personal items in - if not makeup, perhaps toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant, mouthwash, etc.

I also hope to have some crocheting time this weekend to do some hats as well.

I just need to draft a letter explaining that these donations are in the name of my late sister-in-law, who was a patient at Hope Lodge. She often told us how nice they were to her at the lodge, and in fact, the staff remembers her too. They told me how much they loved her and how sad they were to hear that she passed away.

It's good to know that my sister-in-law was so well-loved and will remain in the hearts and minds of so many people.

I miss her.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Weekend At Grammy's




Justin spent 2 nights with us. He loves the football I picked up for him recently. He sure is a blessing in our lives. He learned to play catch too. He'll pick something up, say "Catch!" and look out if you aren't ready yet! LOL!

Friday, April 22, 2011

A Blessed Good Friday and Happy Earth Day

There is an argument on-going on Facebook that started when the Amazon Kindle people wished everyone a Happy Earth Day. Some took great exception to that and declared that they would honor Good Friday instead.

Why can't we do both? I can thank my God for the sacrifice He made, sending His only Son to die for my salvation. And I think that one way we can show that gratitude is to show respect for the home given to us by our Father by conserving earth's resources and cleaning up our oceans.

Monday, April 18, 2011

A Labor of Love



I was honored to be asked to crochet a hat for Gloria - her last hat. Her family sent me a photo of the dress they selected for her viewing and funeral, and so I went out to find some lilac yarn to try to match the dress as closely as possible. I'm not sure if I came close or not, but I am very happy with the hat itself.

I got the pattern from an Annie's Attic booklet - Chemo Caps and Wraps. It is called the Spiral Cap and it turned out just lovely! I express-mailed it to the family so that it will arrive before the viewing tomorrow night. We will be attending both services, but this way they will have it so that she will look lovely.

I love the look of the finished hat but I don't know if I'll ever make another. Not that it was a difficult hat to make - it wasn't. But that will forever be "Gloria's hat".

Maybe sometime in the future I will make that style again and donate them to an oncology center.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

What Can I Say About Gloria?

I have a sister-in-law named Gloria. I liked her when I met her and grew to love her as time went on.
She is a sweet person, childlike in innocence. She is funny. A kind and thoughtful person, and a gentle soul - she reached out to those around her who needed her help. She had some hard times earlier on in her life, but was blessed with a loving family – parents and siblings to support her and provide comfort when she needed it. She found what she was looking for though – someone to love her and a family of her own.
Gloria left us on Friday night. She withstood 3 bone marrow transplants and 4 chemotherapy sessions. She was about to be prepared for another marrow transplant when she succumbed to pneumonia. She passed peacefully with her loved ones around her, her husband kneeling at her bedside. That gentle soul is now in the hands of Jesus.

I say that I have a sister-in-law, not that I had a sister-in-law. Gloria will remain in all our hearts, until we meet again. We will miss her – she’s a truly lovely lady.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A Visit With Justin

I had a very nice visit with my little grandson on Tuesday. He's such a hoot! He can identify all of the alphabet letters and tell you what they are, and if you ask him to find a particular letter, he will find it for you! He's only 27 months old so I am amazed! My younger son Tom was also an alphabet virtuoso when he was the same age.

Monday, April 4, 2011

A Good Monday For a Change

Ordinarily, I don't like Mondays. But for the start of the work week, today wasn't bad. The day passed by quickly. So quickly, in fact, that I looked at the clock on my computer and realized it was past the end of the work day and I was still at my desk. I like days like this.

I'm hoping to be able to enroll in a class this summer. I am working on a degree a little at a time. It may take me 10 years to get a two-year degree, but I intend to do it. It's just a matter of getting the bucks together to pay the tuition.

Not much to do tonight. I copied a lot of my PDF patterns from my computer to my Kindle.

I think I'll take yarn and hook to work tomorrow and make something.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Red Hats

I posted a photo of the infant hat on my facebook page and I got a message from my cousin who asked if I could make one in an adult size. And in red...with a purple flower. As you may have guessed, she belongs to the Red Hat Society. She would like to take the hat to an event that she's attending next weekend. I was happy to stitch up a hat for her. She even offered to show off the hat and see if she could sell any for me. I stitched another cloche/fedora hat in red and purple to take with her.

Posting photos:

Monday, March 28, 2011

Skype?

Anyone use it? I signed up for the free account. I'd like to get on the computer and talk to Justin some evenings. He's such a sweet little guy. He's smart, too! He's been reading letters to me. Moved my hand from the front of my computer and spelled "T-O-S-H-I-B-A". What a boy! We had such fun last Tuesday with him at the Aquarium in Camden. My brother and I took him on the train to see the "fish" - he loves fish. When we left one exhibit and went to the next, he would wave and say "Bye!" to the fish.

I hope this isn't going to be a late night tonight. I am so tired and I hate it when I can't sleep.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Few of My Favorite Photos


Justin and his dad at the car show



Our beagle wants to play!




Crocheted Eeyore - one of my favorite projects
















Wayne - with our buddies





Tigger - another fun project!