Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Another Grange Fair

Well, another grange fair has come and gone.  If I'm not confused on my count, I believe this was my 24th year.  Last year I was sick as a dog and thought for sure no entries, but I searched for projects I completed during that year and found an item to enter for judging.  Glad to say it won a ribbon.  Not a first place, but that's okay with me!

This year, I had 4 entries.  I have been hoping to beat my all-time high of 12 entries in one year, but my crochet mojo comes and goes.  I have done more crocheting this year than I have in the last several years, but a lot of that has been little crocheted hats for a NICU and not entries for the fair.  It's okay though, as NICU hats are close to my heart.  I love making hats for the smallest and most delicate of God's children.  My older son spent time in the NICU as a newborn.  His bilirubin count was so high that it required 2 complete blood exchange transfusions to try to bring his count down.  He survived it and thrives today with a wife and 2 boys of his own!

My entries this year consisted of a hat, scarf, Christmas ornament and an apple-shaped dishcloth, all crocheted.  3 out of the four took ribbons.  Third place for the dishcloth and Christmas ornaments, and a first place for the hat.  Imagine my surprise when I stopped in the fair on opening day and found a blue ribbon on my hat - but the tag had been changed by the judges to move it to the knitted category!  First place for a knitted hat!  The hat was correctly entered as crocheted (here is a link to the youtube video for the hazelnut beanie, if anyone wants to give it a try).  The judges mistook it for brioche knitting, which I've never heard of.  Seeing this, I felt funny accepting the ribbon so I e-mailed the fair personnel to let them know about the mistake.  When I went to pick up my items on the last day of the fair, I spoke to a fair worker in the needlework area.  She said they received my e-mail and they wanted me to take the ribbon anyway, as they loved the hat and thought it deserved first place, even as crocheted.  I highly recommend trying this beanie, if you love to crochet.  It was a fun piece to work on, and I may try small versions to donate to the hospital.  Below are the pictures of my entries and some pictures of the NICU hats I'm making.

In March we went on a cruise to the Caribbean.  That's where I got a lot of hats finished.  Best part of some of my days was relaxing in the coffee bar with an iced coffee or iced tea and crocheted in quiet comfort.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

My Best Friend's Troubles

My best friend has 4 legs.  He's going to be 13 years old and in September 2015 at his vet visit, the vet noted that he was developing cataracts.  He's always been a sprightly, lively, brave little miniature pinscher and I was sad to realize that his eyesight was compromised.  I loved looking into those clear brown eyes.  But within 2 months, he was diagnosed with diabetes and his cataracts had robbed him of his sight.  I couldn't believe how quickly it occurred.  Now he maneuvers cautiously through the house and I hope that one day he will become used to his lack of sight and move confidently from room to room.

We are working at getting his blood sugar under control with insulin shots.  Most of the time he doesn't mind his shots, but sometimes I might not do it just right and cause him to yelp or flinch.  Same with his glucose meter tests.  He's a trooper though.  Right now, he's having some infection issues in his ears and his urinary tract.  So I hope a course of antibiotics and ear drops and pain medication with clear that up.  It breaks my heart to see him pacing, barking, crying and whining all night because he's so uncomfortable.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Under The Weather

This is my first year in over 20 years that I haven't entered a project in the Middletown Grange Fair.  I have been sick as a dog and too sick to take the 30 minute ride to drop off a couple of entries for the needlework competition.  I miss the excitement of taking the trip mid-week to see if I've had any luck and won a prize and to check out all the other wonderful exhibits.

But I'm down for the count with an upper respiratory infection, sinus infection, and both ears and both eyes infected.  I'm a mess.

Next year...

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Current Crochet Projects

I bought myself a sewing machine.  What does that have to do with crochet, you ask?  Well, I decided to make some crocheted kitchen towels.  The ones with the crocheted tops that you button around the oven handle.  I'm making some for gifts and decided to buy the sewing machine to sew a seam on the cut tops to keep them from unraveling.  Of course, it's not the only thing I'll use it for.  When I get to be more proficient, I'd like to sew some fleece blankets to add to the crocheted blanket collection for the NICU.  Maybe make some aprons or some other gift items for my relatives for Christmas.  It's a nice little Brother sewing machine that I purchased on Amazon for under $80.  I know I'll never be as good with the sewing machine as my mother - she made the most elaborate and detailed Barbie doll clothes when we were kids.  We didn't know we had it so good.  Our Barbies had lovely handmade clothes when all the other kids had to settle for store-bought.  I only wish we still had some of those, even as keepsakes.  My mom's been gone for 24 years now.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

A New Member of the Family

We did adopt the beagle we went to see on April 14.  She's been with us about 2 weeks now and she is a sweetheart.  I forgot what it was like to have a puppy in the house.  She's 6 months old.  She is a lively, friendly little thing and she makes us laugh.  She is getting along with our 12 year old min pin, keeping him on his toes.  She crouches down and barks at him, wanting to play.  He does play tug of war with her over some of their toys, but he doesn't last long 'til he runs for the safety of my lap.

Meet Bella.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Missing Our Beagle

We're going today to look at another beagle family member.  We found her on Petfinder and will meet her today.  We miss our elderly beagle so much.  We aren't replacing him so much as bringing some lightness back into the house.  He left such a huge hole in our hearts and I still cry because I  miss him.  I grieve but I want a taste of the love he gave us while he was here.  And if we can provide a home for someone else's cast off furbaby, so be it.  I hope she likes us and we can bring her home.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Lost a 4-Legged Friend Today

Our beagle crossed the Rainbow Bridge today.  He's been sick and losing weight and the vet said it could have been a number of issues.  He was 11 years old so she said it wouldn't be a mistake if we were considering euthanasia.  I was afraid that was where we were going to end up, so my husband said goodbye to him through many tears this morning before he left for work.

My son and I took him in and the vet tech wrapped him in a big soft blue blanket.  It was just perfect for him as he loved nothing more than lying on blankets at home.  Any time I got out from under my throw blanket and it ended up on the floor, the dog took it over!  We were there with him when he drew his last breath.

I feel so sad, but I know that this period of grief is nothing compared to the amount of time he gave us love.  I do believe our pets go to heaven.  There is no one more deserving of heaven than our four-legged family members who give us their unconditional love.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Hat For a Preemie - A NICU Project

A hat intended for a NICU donation.  I want to make a few more Mickeys and then some Minnie Mouse hats.  That is an orange the hat is modeled on.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

2 Hats - 1 New and 1 Old

I just finished a Mickey Mouse hat for my grandson.  Last year around this time, I finished a Valentine's Day hat in light gray and pink.  What do you think?

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Dang It - I Left My Project Somewhere!

I was going to post photos of my blanket in progress and the baby hats I made, but I left my project bag at my son and daughter-in-law's house!  I'll have to dig out another crochet hook and work on some baby hats in another color.  Maybe I'll retrieve the bag tonight and post some photos later.

My 4-legged buddy took a spill last night.  My min pin sleeps on my bed and I woke to a thump and a yelp in the middle of the night.  I don't know if I inadvertently kicked him or if he was sleeping near the foot of the bed and rolled out.  I don't remember feeling any contact with him before he fell.  I was sick about it and got up to check on him.  He is his usual bouncy self this morning (even though he is 12 years old) so I don't think he's hurt.  But then I was up all night worrying about him.  He was spinning in circles this morning when I asked him if he wanted to go out.  So I think he's okay.

I spent some time with my 2 grandsons yesterday.  They are the cutest.  Yes, I am biased.  But they really are cute.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Projects For This Year

I hope to start AND finish two projects this year.  Both are pretty ambitious projects.  One is to make another crocheted nativity set to give to my son and his wife.  They'll have to promise to put it up high so that their dogs can't chew it up.  I think I would cry if that happened.  LOL!

The other is a Crochet by Numbers projects.  Todd Paschall sent me the instructions and a pattern made from one of my personal pictures and I'd really love to make it, finish it and frame it for hanging.  It's a picture of my grandson Justin holding his newborn brother Nathan.

As for recent projects I'm working on - I've started some baby hats and blankets for the NICU donations I make each year for a crochetville member.

Saturday, January 23, 2016


The snowstorm did indeed arrive, and we've got quite a pile of snow out there.  We are expecting to have snow through tomorrow morning, so not sure how much more to expect.  The news stations are on all day with snow coverage.  There is only so much you can watch.  Here are some photos from my view.  I like it as long as it has that Christmas card quality.  The snow is lovely when it first arrives, but within a day, it will be black and gray along the roads.  AND it will hang around forever, when it comes in amounts like this.  I know that all those who live near the Great Lakes and places like Buffalo and Albany are probably laughing at me.  "Snow?  You call that snow?"  But, hey - we aren't used to this much all at once.  I know my 7 year old grandson is very happy.  He's been waiting for snow all winter, and it's been so warm I didn't think he would get his wish.

I was just helping my husband move our cars so that he can plow the driveway, and fell on my tushie in that snowbank right at the corner of my house.  You can see it in these pictures.  Just picture me on my behind waiting for help to get up out of the snow.  Hahahaha!

Just thankful that we aren't in the floods the Jersey shore are experiencing.

Stay warm everyone.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Big Snowstorm On Its Way?

Looks like we might be hit with the first major snow of the winter this weekend.  Plan to do some crocheting, so it might be a good idea to sort through some project ideas tomorrow.  I'd like to make something for my grandsons.  Maybe some nice quick scarves to keep them warm.  I'll have to search some free patterns tonight and then check my inventory to see if I have the yarn I need.

I do already have a request from my grandson for some belt loops on his teddy bear's crocheted pants, and a belt to go through them.  I wonder if I can find a small buckle at Joann's tomorrow.

Tomorrow I have physical therapy scheduled for my shoulders.  I'm not looking forward to that.  My shoulders are so painful.  I had a shot in each one last week and it helped but didn't cure it.

I've also got a nerve conduction test scheduled for the end of February to check for carpal tunnel.  I really hate that my hands and shoulders are giving me so much trouble.

Made a pot of chicken soup yesterday because it was so cold.  Today was sausage sandwiches with peppers and onions.  I'll have to give some thought as to tomorrow's menu.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Happy Birthday, Justin!

Yesterday was my grandson's birthday - he's 7.  I can't believe how fast the time has gone.  He had a wonderful day starting with a balloon avalanche.  My daughter-in-law rigged up some balloons that fell down on him when he opened his bedroom door!  The day ended with dinner at the Olive Garden.  It's his favorite restaurant.  He loves fettucine alfredo!

Happy birthday to the sweetest little boy I know.  He has a kindness about him that I haven't seen in other children.  He is sweet to everyone.

Love you, Justin!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Limited Crocheting For a While

I'm having trouble with my shoulders, elbows and hands lately.  Went to an orthopedist and need to schedule therapy and a nerve test.  My hands are weak and I tend to drop stuff.  Crocheting makes my fingers numb.  Crap...

I did finish up some Christmas ornaments for gifts.  Unfortunately, I didn't take photos of them before giving them.  I am still working on some for myself for next year, so I'll photograph those and put the pictures on my blog when I get them done.  I plan to work up a few sushi ornaments.  I made some for a gift a few years ago and they were very cute.  Also want to make some wreaths, some drums, some hats and scarves (yes, ornaments.  Not full size hats and scarves).

I hope to have my physical problems worked out soon so that I can get back on track with my crocheting.  I want to make some baby items to donate to a NICU, and make some gifts for my grandsons.

I also want to promise myself to get back to blogging on a regular basis.  My posts have been too few and far between.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Long Time, No Posts

My goodness, it's been a while since I posted.  I've been down in the dumps and just recently started feeling a little better.  I blame the worst of my depression on a medication I was taking, called Topamax.  Stay away from that stuff!  A doctor put me on it to help me lose weight and instead I nearly lost my mind.  Bad medicine.  I called the doctor myself and asked to be weaned off of it because the effects were scaring me.  Glad it's all behind me.

I've picked up my yarn and hook and started working on some Christmas gifts for my siblings.  I don't know if any of them follow my blog, but just in case I won't mention what it is I'm working on.  There are a couple of cute patterns I'd like to try though.  Here is one: it's a Mickey Mouse granny square.   This is a free pattern.   http://startingchain.com/mickey-mouse-granny/?utm_source=stc-stc&utm_medium=social-fb&utm_term=092515&utm_content=link&utm_campaign=mickey-mouse-granny&origin=stc_stc_social_fb_link_mickey-mouse-granny_092515

This second link is a paid pattern on Ravelry - I purchased it because these little boots would look adorable on my grandson.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

St. Patrick's Day

I'm not usually a corned beef and cabbage person.  Debating whether or not to make some for dinner.

I'm having some issues with numbness in my fingers - the pinky and the ring finger.  I hope I can get to the bottom of this soon and it doesn't affect my ability to crochet.  I have to go for x-rays of my back and neck.

I finished a Minnie Mouse hat for my sister to give as a gift to a friend for her granddaughter.  I have to make a Mickey Mouse hat for the same sister for her friend's baby grandson.  I hope to start AND finish it today.

I'll follow up with photos when I have it done.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Friday, February 6, 2015

February 6, 2015

I have been getting more and more crocheting done.  I finished the blanket I was making for Nathan, and finished two hats.  One is a slouchy type beanie and one has a pink heart on a gray hat for Valentine's Day.  I'm not really a hat person.  None look good on me, but the blue hat I put to good use yesterday.  Man, was it cold!  I really hate winter and look forward to the spring.  I wish I could retire to a warm climate.  Not Florida, necessarily.  Just something warmer than here.  I loved the Carolinas when I visited there a few years ago.  Either one would work for me.  But then I'd be leaving behind my grandkids, who I love so much!

Anyway, here are pictures of the finished items.  The hat with the heart has a pom pom added.  I don't have a photo of the blue hat yet, but I'll update with a photo of that one later.  My next project is a headband/ear warmer for myself.  The gray hat may find a home with my niece.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Anyone Else Feel Like This?

This is sooooooo me!  I want one!  Check this out on Teespring, if you are interested.  I'm not making money on this - just thought it was cute and would pass it on.  http://teespring.com/crochetcoffeenaps?pr=frship#pid=212&cid=5823&sid=front