Sunday, November 26, 2006


The past several months have been fast paced to say the least. The last few days have been a lovely interlude - no soccer, cub scouts, parties, homework, etc. etc. Thanksgiving was at my sister's house so I only had to make some dishes to take there. It's been a time of much needed relaxation.

I finished my other Meathead hat the other day (Flickr group here). Here it is in all its lime green glory.

And here's a close up of the embellishment. It's a berry cluster with some peacock feathers.
Why do I have peacock feathers lying around in my house? Excellent question - discuss!

Thank you Paula for the suggestion of Opal sock yarn. The first pair of socks I made is also wool and nylon and doesn't itch me so I haven't given up hope.

I would love to hear any and everyone's opinion of the updated Blogger (beta). Should I change to it? What are the good and bad points? Thanks for any feedback.

I've been on a finishing spree so look for a finished object hopefully later this week!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Finishing Up

After all that party prep I was sure I'd just kick back and quilt last week. Wrongo! I've been just enough under the weather with sinus issues that I couldn't get into gear. Also, my unblogged broken toe (on my sewing foot) kept me from wanting to sew tooo badly. (No cast or anything - just bruising, swelling, and discomfort. It's mostly better now.) The bonus is that I've finished up some knits.

First up, socks for me in Elann Sock It To Me. Regrettably they make my ankles and legs itch. I'm hoping I can either get used to it, or maybe some 100% merino socks will work for me. Luckily I've got several of those on the needles.

Fetching, left and right. I added several more rows of cables at the wrist and used Karabella Aurora 8 (after seeing how nice Lauren's looked). Please forgive those photos - my in house photographers were too busy watching Scooby Doo to help me.

A Meathead hat. More of them can be seen on the Flickr group here. I also made a green one but haven't finished the embellishment yet. They use one skein of Lamb's Pride Bulky (doubled) and are a fun quick knit.

The felt flower is a felt (obviously) version of a paper poinsettia found in Better Homes and Gardens Christmas Ideas (2006).

Finally, Coleen and Jenn both blogged about our stormy weather last week, and showed beautiful cloud pictures. I spent much of that day running around getting supplies to make another sand castle cake for someone else (finished on Saturday). Somehow I missed the clouds, but I did notice when the sun came out. Here's a picture I took through a screen window on the sunporch - the sparkles are raindrops on the screening.
I have countless things to be thankful for today and everyday. I hope all of you have a wonderful and happy Thanksgiving Day no matter how you spend it.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

End of the Season

The party's over - literally. My last birthday party post until next year! (You can breathe a sigh of relief now as we move forward to more quilt related content after today. Maybe some of my quilting friends will come back.)

The birthday boy had trouble settling on a theme, so 9 days pre-party I decided on dinosaurs and rushed the invitations out the door. I over invited a little, thinking some folks couldn't make it on short notice - instead we had twelve little attendees (including my three). In the end there were 27 people in my house - for me, this is quite the undertaking.

After some intensive googling, I came up with a few activities. One was to have small toy dinosaurs and "fossils" buried in sand for the little paleontologists to find and keep. Here the birthday boy is helping me make the fossils last week.

Recipe: 2 cups flour, 1 cup salt, 1 cup water. This was a little sticky, but adding too much flour will make them puff up. What worked for us was to put little piles of dough on the cookie sheet, make impressions with dinosaur feet, then bake at 325 degrees for 1.5 hours.

Some of the finished product.

This was so successful for us that we made additional fossils at the party (that I forgot to dole out to the guests after baking - oh well.)

Of course it rained the whole day of the party, so this was an indoor activity. We buried the dinosaurs and fossils in bins of sand. The aftermath is below. The fossils were more popular than the dinosaurs.

What's a party without a little science? I used the old baking soda/vinegar trick in tiny volcanoes made from film canisters with playdough around them. Each guest had their own volcano. We also went on an (indoor) dinosaur egg hunt. We put little dinosaurs in Easter eggs, then paraded around until the eggs were found. Bear in mind that 7 of the guests were three years old.

Since T-Rex's are the king of the dinosaurs (as I've been informed daily for several weeks) we had a sand castle cake. I found this idea at some cake site last year. The "sand" is brownulated sugar. You can put it on the frosting but then the frosting is sort of crunchy- bad mouth feel. The sea shells are melt and pour candy. I mixed white with just a touch of chocolate, then "painted" them with luster powder.


Here's evidence that I still quilt. Look closely, and you'll see that the lights are on on the Bernina.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Stitches East

...And Other Knitting Related Content

I've done some piecing in the last week, but mostly it's been about the knitting and the kid related Halloween and school events.

I finished the pink sock for Socktober, but the other sock languished, in need of having the gusset stitches picked up. Instead I cast on for a lovely Koigu sock, and got almost to the heel flap. (Pictures later.)

I cast on for My So Called Scarf on Thursday and I've knit about 17" so far.

I also cast on a vest in Elann Peruvian Highland Wool, but I'm not sure I'm going to stick with it.

On Saturday I went to Stitches East with a large group of knitters. (There must be some term that's been coined for a group of knit bloggers, but I don't know what it is.)

Here are Coleen and Jen modeling their lovely scarves at Panera before we left for Baltimore.

Here's a group shot (sorry some faces are turned away). There's Jolene, Coleen, Jen, Suzanne, Jenna, Lolly, and Laura.
No photography was permitted in the show itself, so you'll have to take my word for it that we met up with Eunny, DNA Stacey, Cheryl and Erin.

I also met Saun who was very nice and looked great in her Susy Tunic. There was a Kaffe Fassett sighting, but I knew I wouldn't say anything coherent to him, so I nonchalantly strolled by.

I was so glad to be able to go with this group. I enjoyed being able to relax with a group of like minded friends (who knew exactly which booth had the best price on everything)! What fun it was to see Erin's hand dyed yarn and roving on sale, Jolene talking to Phoenix Bess (for whom Jolene knits samples), and see Eunny next to her gorgeous sweater from the IK Winter Issue in the Interweave Knits booth. Thanks so much for including me, guys.

Here's my haul, mostly sock yarn. Left to right Ellen's Half Pint Farm, Mountain Colors Bearfoot in Evergreen, and Socks That Rock in Midsummers Night.
Also Trekking XXL in 71 (Navy) and Mama E's Superwash Sock Yarn in "Ocean Mist".

I also bought four balls of Karabella Aurora 8, two black and two pink, and I've already used some of it for this:

I know it's hard to see the cables here, but it's Fetching from the Summer 2006 issue of Knitty. The first one is complete except for the thumb. I added two extra cable repeats to make it a little longer in the wrist. I think it's my fastest knitting yet.

I'm always disappointed when I don't get to go to Houston for the big IQA show, but I'm counting on next year. I'll have to get in gear on those quilts!