Sunday, November 29, 2020

Ready to settle in for some winter crafting...

I'd like to say I made great progress on the ripple blanket I showed last week, but it took me a while to get it figured out.  I wasn't liking the pattern I started with and not finding one pattern that did what I wanted it to do, I looked over several and blended together things I liked.  That said, there was a lot of crocheting and frogging before I hit upon the size of chevrons I liked and the number of chevrons that would give me approximately the size blanket I want to make.  

And then once I got the chevrons down, I kept changing my mind about the slight contrast color being gray or black, and when I decided it should be gray I had to try two different shades of gray. Or was it three?  All of this was kind of exhausting -  and frankly, if my son hadn't asked for this and requested the colors (while giving me some discretion in choosing what I thought looked best), I might have just given up already.  Or I would have made this a little more free-flowing than it's going to be.  Anyway, the finally decided upon Dark Heather Gray doesn't show well at all in the picture below (it's between the blue and the white), but I think it works well in person.

Oh, and I almost forgot...  I had to do the math (several times) to figure out how tall each color section should be - because I'm graduating the heights of the white sections while leaving the blue and gray sections the same - the end goal being a blanket that measures somewhere around 72 inches long.  

While it will take me a while to finish this, hopefully it will be fairly smooth sailing from here on out. 

BTW, Marsha asked me last week what color the blue is.  It's Vanna's Choice in Colonial Blue - a brand of yarn that's gone out of production, if I understand correctly.   Colonial Blue is a slightly muted royal blue - more muted than it appears in the picture above.


And then there were a few hours of stitching on my Linens & Threads cross stitch.  But not enough that a photo does it justice, so I'm not posting one today.  I'm just letting you know it got some love this past week.  😊


And I've got my Advent Project of Projects all bagged up and ready to begin:  

I look forward to showing you next Sunday how much (or, I suppose, how little) I actually tackle of this.

I've already forgotten what's inside!  Yay!

We're supposed to get snow this week, 
and it looks like I'm ready to settle in and craft!

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Give Thanks!

Being an out-of-the-ordinary, quiet Thanksgiving day here this year, with a small turkey breast in the oven and some time on my hands, I thought I'd visit my blogging buddies - not really expecting many to be posting.

Fortunately, Cheryl's post at Thinking of Home was the first post I landed on and I was so blessed by the song she linked to, I am inspired to follow suit and share a word of praise to my Heavenly Father -  the One who provides, the One to whom thanks is due, the One in whom I place my trust and faith.

Before clicking the link on Cheryl's post today, I don't think I'd ever before heard the hymn Behold Our God, but it's truly a beautiful song - in word and tune.  Simple and easy to sing.  Do visit Cheryl's blog and listen to the version she linked to. 

And just because I was curious, I went looking for other versions of this song.  I'm always fascinated by technology that allows musicians to do things with voices and instruments that couldn't have been done even 20 years ago.  If you're so inclined to click on the video below, I hope you not only enjoy what Michael Lining has done with technology, but that you let the words and music touch your spirit.

I hope you have a blessed and truly thanks-filled Thanksgiving today.

Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, 
coming down from the Father of lights, 
with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.
~ James 1:17 NASB

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Making space - week 4

So...  this week is an odd little hodgepodge of things leaving.   Putting the autumn decorations away (which were few), clearing the last of MIL's things from their spot in the living room, and sorting (a bit) through a closet and the pantry, I was able to see my way to removing an odd assortment of items from our home. 

It was so freeing to finally reclaim the last corner of the living room from the last bits of things I'd brought home from MIL's and hadn't quite decided what to do with.  Several of us bloggers have talked about decluttering in layers. I didn't realize what a weight this layer has been.  

You know... I feel like I've reclaimed my living room several times over the last 6 months, but the truth is things keep migrating back there.  I think because it's near the front door and putting things in a pile in a corner of the living room is my way of saying "it needs to go".   But too often things just sit there.  And collect.

I think I may need another staging area for stuff needing to leave the house.  Or, perhaps better yet, I think I'm going to start taking things directly out to my car once they start "stacking up".  Of course, that's what the decluttering "experts" say to do.  I just have a stubborn, "gotta learn it for myself" streak that's a mile long.  To go along with this new way of doing things, I may take more individual pictures, as opposed to collecting stuff together for several days before taking a group shot.  I can put my collage skills to work again.  Figuring this out as I go... 

So what do we have here...  Plastic containers I finally admit I really don't like using.  Cereal stays fresher left in its inner bag (rolled down well and fastened shut) than it does in these plastic cereal containers.  I almost never think to put pasta in the pasta holders (probably because we don't eat much pasta anymore).  The gloves have a hole in them, the boots don't fit anyone (did I take a picture of these another time?  They seem familiar.)  Anyway, son that they used to fit said to give them away.  A vintage manual hair trimmer (not valuable, but someone might like it for its vintage appeal - maybe).  More googly eyes and a little crafty hanger thingie.  A head set that doesn't fit any of our current electronics.  A couple of potholders that came free in the mail (in MIL's name, no less) and are so useless they should probably just be thrown away.  And lastly... I think I count 11 hangers there.   I'm thinking of keeping a running tally of hangers leaving the house.  I have a feeling I will be shocked at the number I can get rid of.

And that's it for this week!  

Making Space: 90 things gone

Monday, November 23, 2020

One Thousand Gifts online Bible study...

Well, as is somewhat normal for me, I've started a thing a bit late, but it's so good I thought I'd share about an online Bible study - in case anyone reading would like to jump in. The study started last week, so really today is only one week late.  Totally surmountable.

At one can register to participate in a free 5-week Bible study on the topic of Thankfulness.   The study is based on the book One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp.

While I just got started this past weekend, it was easy to catch up.  I'm not a stickler for filling in every blank of a study book, but in listening to the audio book (downloadable for free from Hoopla) and watching the videos, I've already gained so much!  The e-book of One Thousand Gifts, as well as the Study Guide, are both also available free on Hoopla.  I get access to Hoopla free through my county library system.  You might want to check to see if you do too!  For this or any reading - and movies too!

Anyway...  if you're interested in a Bible study and think you'd like to learn a bit more about being thankful, this might be something you'll benefit from.  With Thanksgiving this week (in the U.S.) it seems like the perfect time to begin.  Just a few days in and I'm hooked.

If you're interested, you can click on the link above or on the graphic below to get to the site where you can sign up.  A caveat:  As with many online things, you may find yourself receiving e-mails you didn't ask for.  They are easy enough to delete and/or unsubscribe from I'm finding.  

I hope you have a very happy, contented Thanksgiving - whether it's with friends, family, or with just yourself.  Honestly, I think focusing on things we can truly be thankful for (instead of disappointment in what we may be missing) can make this year's a most blessed Thanksgiving day.  If you're reading this and don't live in the U.S., well...  I hope you have a blessed and thankful Thursday too.  :)

Love and peace to you all!

Sunday, November 22, 2020

A little of this and that...

Having gotten myself in gear with my Linen & Threads sampler I managed to make a bit of a dent in Part 4 this week.  While you can't tell from the picture (below), Part 4 is a BIG design. While I spent hours on it this past week, it's probably only about a quarter done.  Why does one big design feel bigger than two or even three smaller ones I wonder...

Even though it's slow going, it's always fun watching a design take shape. 


Next up...   Lucy at Another Day blog gets credit for this next idea.  Last week Lucy mentioned that she is bagging up mini skeins and creating her own advent calendar.  What a great idea!   Lucy explains her motivation for making her own, but my motivation (in addition to not needing any more yarn) is that I've lost some interest along the way, and this might just be a kick start I need to more seriously dig back into my yarns and crochet threads. 

I decided to come up with some easy projects that I might be able to complete in a day or so.  I'm packaging up different yarns and threads, with the plan being to open up a bag each day of Advent and hopefully be inspired to make a thing.

Lest you think it might get overwhelming, or simply not possible to complete a project each day, I've thought of that already...

First, I've chosen very simple, and familiar (to some degree) projects.   And we're talking dishcloths, small doilies, bookmarks, small cross stitch motifs to add to my Linen & Threads' sampler...  stuff like that. The point (in my mind, anyway) isn't so much a variety of projects, but rather the point is to dig into my yarns and get my fingers busy with it again.

And secondly, keeping with my "go with the flow" sort of attitude when it comes to crafting, I'm not going to burden myself with rules and expectations of having to finish everything.  In fact, I give myself permission to completely skip a day (or days) of opening a package.  If I end up with unopened packages at the end of Advent, then the fun just extends beyond that time frame.  

So you see, it's all good!  I'm even using up some years-old paper bags, so I'm decluttering as well.

I don't think my large basket is going to hold it all as I've only got about 8 days of projects bagged up here.  I've got another week to decide on what projects and yarns and threads will get bagged up.  Shouldn't be a problem to pull it all together by next Sunday's post and then I'll be ready to begin.

Then each week during advent I'll enjoy showing in my weekly YOP post what I've completed that week.


And finally, this weekend, I got started on a large project that I hope to have finished by Christmas.  Youngest (25 yo) son asked if I'd make him a new crocheted blanket.  He picked out the colors and asked for a ripple pattern.  

Just a peeky peek this week!

A lot of rows to go, but other than figuring out widths of the color changes it's a pretty mindless project.   And while I'd love to have it finished by Christmas, I'm not going to stress over that either.

In case you haven't picked up on it, I am very much about not stressing right now.  It's been an eventful year - in so many respects.  I'm going to do my best to keep my little corner of the world peaceful.