Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Stash Bashing Thursday!

I'm joining up with Tricia @ Crunchy Catholic Momma for the stash bash with an official post!
"I've never met a crafter without a stash of some kind. This year my goal is to use up all the craft supplies I have spent money on that are taking up mental and physical space in my life.  Join me here every Thursday for a Stash Bash."
I've been doing some crazy stash bashing this week, again with 12" afghan squares. I made my 4th (or 5th, not really sure) Drop in the Bucket square just because I love it so much, and the possibilities of color combinations is immense. This one I did with sky blue, purple, and a marled yarn. I love it!
january filler #4
I've also been "raiding" the free squares from Melinda Miller, and More V's Please was my choice of the day. (I've completed several more of this square, as I like its lacy yet solid design)
more v's?
I've wanted to use some motifs from Edie Eckman's Beyond the Square book, and this was the result:
knitted corners
I'm hoping that once I sew everything together, it'll straighten out.
I also did a set of 6" blocks, using the Grandala pattern and the BAMCAL's Feb 6" Love & Honor-- the fourth square is a simple granny square, as I didnt like the Love & Honor square so much.
mixin' it up

These are only a few of the squares I've been hooking as part of my stash bashing. I've also decided to do 40 days of squares for Lent, and donate the resulting afghan(s) to a local charity (TBD). Besides the squares pictured here, I've hooked another Versailles square, a design that I have blogged about before. The March squares for the BAMCAL have been posted, so I'm sure you'll see those in future stash bashes.
Hopefully next week I'll have a few different things to share in the stash bash- I hope I've given some ideas on how to destash :)

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Slow but steady

I've had a busy week, both with school and with my crafting. I get my fieldwork placement today, so that's what I'll be doing for most of the month of March. We are required to get something like 24 hours of time in the classroom- 4 observing, 20 teaching (or some similar combination, I can't quite remember).
Since spring break is next week, I've had a big project to finish for every single one of my classes. My spring break won't be as exciting as last year's (I went to Paris last year), but I do have a subbing job for 3 days as well as an appointment for a massage.

But onto my WIPs this week. I'm joining up with Tami's Amis and Ginny's Yarn Along.


I've been working on the Lattice Lace Wrap for a few weeks now, and it's only taking me this long because it is a hard project to carry along with me. The skein finally looks like it's getting smaller, which means I am getting close to the end. I've made a few mistakes at the ends of the rows, but they aren't terribly noticeable, as the yarn is pretty fuzzy.

I'm also working on another button cowl, as I liked my first one so much. However, this one is crochet instead of knit, as the knitting wasn't doing it for me. I'm using a K hook, with a DK-ish yarn held double. It's nice and squishy, with a front-post treble crochet detail. I'm thinking that when I'm done with it, I'll make a matching hat or headband.  Thoughts?

I'm actually reading a new book right now: A History of the World in 6 Glasses. It basically goes through the 6 drinks (other than water) that are important to history. I've only just started, but the author's insight on beer is fascinating. I like how he mentions different traditions that we still have that relate to various places in history.

That's all for today!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Whatever you do for the Least of these...

Mondays are perhaps the worst day of my week. I sit through 5 hours of school, and then work for 5 more hours. Luckily, spring break is just around the corner!

I'm truly be challenged this Lent, thinking about the 3 main ideas: prayer, fasting and almsgiving. Part of my almsgiving is related to my stash bashing- I made the decision to make 40 squares for each day of Lent, and create an afghan (or 2) to donate to a local shelter. So far I've been quite successful, and I feel better knowing my work is going somewhere that matters.
"Whatever you do for the least of these, you do for me"

I plan on going to weekly adoration- it's not at my church, so I'm definitely going out of my comfort zone, which is something we've been talking about in my women's group.

In other news, it's been lovely having my bf home- my sister was lovely enough to do a photo-shoot of sorts with us. This is my favorite so far:


God's blessings for a good week for everyone!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

FO Friday: Slippers, Hats and Flowers!

I've had an extremely productive few days.
I whipped up these slippers in a few hours, but am still debating their color. I used Paton's Classic wool, dyed with Kool-Aid by a couple of young cousins who thought every color under the rainbow would be cool.  Everyone in my house thinks they look like fruit loops. What do you think?

fruity shoes!

I also finally finished the sewing on a pair of baby dino hats. Both of them are going to friends who are having babies in March. I also have 2 craft shows in March, and I've been working on flower stretchies. My flower headbands went over fairly well in the fall, and someone suggested I put the flowers on a hair elastic. Hopefully both of them will do fairly well this time also.

FO 2/23/12

My bf has been home for a few weeks- YAY- and he brought me back a pocket watch! It's from Germany, and it makes me feel really cool, with the chain hanging from my pocket. Isn't it pretty?


I'm joining up with Tami's Amis FO Friday-- check out more lovely stuff here!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

WIP Wednesday

I've been working on a number of things this week, and have made some progress. I've been trying out more square patterns, and found one that fits both under the 'easy' category, and the 'uses lots of scrap' category.
half a snowflake
This is Woolly's snowflake square. There are some bits about it that I find wobbly, but otherwise it's a fun and pretty pattern.

I've actually made progress on my ripple blanket, but don't have any current photos :(
Same for my Lattice Lace.

However, as soon as I get to uploading my more recent pictures, I will post them here.
To see more Works in Progress, head over to Tami's Amis!

Friday, February 17, 2012

FO Friday: A Shawl

I worked a good few weeks on my Apple Blossom stole, and yesterday I shipped it out to its new owner! I really enjoyed the pattern, but, as stated before, if I were to make it again, I would make more mods than I did the first time. I would make the center trellis pattern longer- I shortened it the first time. I would also make the entire thing a bit narrower.
Here it is, laying on my blocking mats, as I try to decide if it needed blocking:
apple blossom

I also finished a scarf that I had floating around half finished- I made it with fringe, which I don't normally do, as I was getting frustrated and just wanted to finish.
finished with fringe
This was progress, as it gets added to the craft show merchandise pile!
That's all for today-- Check out Tami's Amis for more FO Fridays!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

"Show no partiality"

James 2:1
I love when what I'm learning in school actually relates to my faith life. I was reading the daily Mass reading from James 2 this morning, and said to myself, hey, this applies to my teaching as well! God doesn't want us to judge other believers based on race/social status/etc, and that's the same thing they're teaching me about my future students. I was thrilled to be able to relate the two, even in such a small way.

A Lenten thought, as Ash Wednesday is next week:
Fasting is not about deprieving yourself of something and being sad, it is about rejoicing in the freedom when that thing is not a concern. We are purifying ourselves so that the Lord can live in us in a deeper way.

Lord, grant that through your grace, we may become a dwelling pleasing to you.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

WIP Wednesday: Knit and Crochet.

I'm participating in Tami's Amis Work-In-Progress Wednesday-- see more cool stuff here.
I'm also linking up with Tricia's Stash Bash.

This week I am mixing things up, and have both a knitting project and a crocheting project to share.

For my knitting, I'm still chugging away at my Berry Citron- I've made it to the 3rd section, finally! I really need to place something normal in my pictures, so you have a reference for its size- it's still not that big:
onto section 3

My crocheting project has changed- I'm working on the Lattice Lace Wrap as part of a Ravelry group Crochet-a-Long. It's a free pattern, and after working on the Apple Blossom Stole, it's a piece of cake. I'm using a different weight then the pattern recommends-- a bulky weight acrylic-- but I like how it's looking so far:
Lattice Lace

That's all I've got for today-- I'll leave you with a pleasant image- we FINALLY have snow!

Friday, February 10, 2012

FO Friday: I'm Boring

I figure I have to be one of the most boring bloggers over at Tami's Amis. I've been really busy with school and several larger projects, so I dont always have something fun to share on Fridays. I do make an attempt, but this week, I again tally things up and find that I didnt finish much this week.
I finished 2 extra squares for the Ravelry Block-a-Month CAL:
jan filler 3
close up

I also have been working on a few different types of cowls, and this is actually the work-in-progress shot, as I still need a button, so the crocheting is finished, but not the actual item:

Since I have the Harry Potter Read-a-Long swap shipping out next week, I should have some FOs to share from that. I am also trying to be a more monogamous crafter, so as I finish up projects, I pull out another WIP instead of starting something. (But I do have a list of patterns that I want to try, so I really have to be patient and work diligently.)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

WIP Wednesday: Scrap Blanket and a Shawl


So, according to my Ravelry projects page, I have been working on this blanket since August of last year. I feel like that was just the date that I finally put it into Rav. As part of this year's Stash Bash, I have been aiming to at least get my blanket to bed/snuggle size. Right now, it's maybe 2/3 of the size. After a certain point, I was simply adding rows back and forth, but somehow I was adding stitches, and it was becoming uneven. So I've gone back to making log cabin squares, and I'll slip stitch them together and such. Here are some of the pieces:

My Apple Blossom is coming along nicely- if I decide to make this again, I'm definitely making it narrower. I've finished the one side, and am about a quarter of the way through the other half:

I'm linking up with WIP Wednesdays, and the Stash-busting Challenge today!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

"I had rather one day in Your courts than a thousand elsewhere"

The Psalm response today (Psalm 84) really stuck out to me as I read today's readings. It is a familiar line, having been made into a popular worship song, but what struck me was the origin. King David had so much, yet he was so aware of the greatness of God, that he knew he'd rather live for one single day in the house of God than repeat his life on earth.
Every day is a new adventure for me when journeying with Christ, but I still struggle with that concept. But part of the prayer from the Mass (we get the Word Among Us, which has the order of the Mass with the prayers and the readings) really helps to encourage me:
"relying solely on the hope of heavenly grace"
And that's something that I want to do- rely only on God and his amazing Grace. 
This morning's reading have really helped me, encouraging me, as I sit attempting to do my homework. But I have some lovely worshipful music playing, and I have a mug of hot tea, so life is splendid, Thanks be to God! 

Friday, February 3, 2012

FO Friday: More Squares!

I have a few larger projects that I have been splitting my time between, and school work is starting to become a bit overwhelming, so all I have today to show off is 2 new squares for my Block-a-Month afghan. I'm joining up with Tami's Amis for my FOF~ if you get a chance, check out the cool stuff over there! :)
I'm also linking to Creating a Family Home's Stashbusting Challenge. Her icon is over >>>>> here

This is another Melinda Miller design, Remember Me:
remember me
I really like this one, as it was designed with the red poppies of the VFW in mind. When I was in London, I loved how you could always tell where the war memorials were, because they were covered in bright red poppies. I don't really feel like we do that as much here in the States. It strikes a chord with me, especially since my BF is just returning from serving overseas. So I made this square with him in mind.

My second square, another Melinda Miller, this one Versailles:
I've had my eye on this one for a while, as I wanted something to remind me of my trip to Paris. Melinda says in her notes on the pattern, that she was inspired by Versailles when she designed it, so I felt like it was an appropriate way to remember my trip. I may work this one again, in more Parisian colors, as this one feels very 'scrappy' to me and I'm not a huge fan of how the colors turned out.

One final thought for the day: are we ready for winter? I keep expecting winter to hit really hard, especially because both December and January have been mild. I'm not complaining, because the Midwest always gets snow and I dont mind a break, but I also don't want to be lulled into a false sense of security.
I took a few minutes the other day to take some pictures in my yard.
green and snow
I love the two ends- snow on the ground, but green-ish plants.
I think this is my mom's Rose of Sharon. It looks cool when it's all bare for the winter.

That's all for now!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Work-In-Progress Wednesday: Step One Done!

I've had my eye on this sweater for a long time. It's super simple, and all in crochet, which really appealed to me. When I finally decided that it would be on my list of projects for this year, I started planning the colors. I wanted it to look good, and I want to be sure I would wear it. So I ordered KnitPicks Bare worsted wool, knowing that I could dye the yarn to suit me.

I had this past Friday off of work, the first Friday in a while, so I made plans to dye a lot of yarn. But that color? After consulting DyeYourYarn, where the author has amazingly worked up all of last season's Pantone colors, I decided on a light blue-green color. The formula was simple, one part Lemon-Lime Kool-aid to 3 parts Berry-Blue. BUT! Blue and green are 2 of my favorite colors to dye, and I didn't have enough to dye all my yarn. Fortunately, I have a decent supply of food-coloring, and I added a few drops of blue to each batch to make up for my lack of BB KA. I also knew that it would be nearly impossible to make 3-4 skeins of yarn the exact same color, especially without re-skeining them together. So I decided to make one skein in a semi-contrasting color, and make the sweater striped.

I dyed yarn all day Friday, and am super pleased with how it turned out:


no flash

So that's my work-in-progress for today- step one of "Mary Makes a Sweater" has been completed. The next step will come as soon as I finish some of my other projects that have been languishing.

Here is one of my other WIPs:

Also, my mom made cookies:

Head on over to Tami's Amis to check out more wonderful WIPs!
I'm also linking up with Ginny's Yarn Along this week :)
My Thursday link-up is Tricia over @ Crunchy Catholic Momma.