Sunday, August 18, 2019

A bit of progress...

Short and sweet today with a couple of progress pictures. 

First, Sacred Space.  I was finally (and only) able to complete Part 1 this week, but it feels like an accomplishment with 30 rounds!

Part 2 only has half as many rounds as Part 1, so here's hoping they go a little more quickly.  Although...  just looking at the pictures, Part 2 looks kind of intense.   We'll see.  Looks can be deceiving with this sort of thing.  


And I wonder if anyone can finally guess what this may be:

I had to do a bit of surgery on it, but the pink floss will come up against the black (on the right side) before it's finished. Depending on what life throws my way this week, I might have this finished by next Sunday.

And that's it, really.    Christmas Dazzle (blanket) is continuing to come along, and I'd say it would easily be finished by next week too, but I have a feeling the above two projects will be calling to me more.  😊

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Monday, August 12, 2019

On Retirement...

My husband's retirement that is!

Image from Wall Street Journal article

Mostly, it's going smoothly.  We both have enough (separate things) to do away from home that we are able to give each other enough space and time to just breathe and "be" by ourselves.   

This was one of my concerns.  After having freedom to order my days as they seemed to fit what I want and need to do, I couldn't imagine what it would be like to have my husband here all day, every day - observing how I spend my days.  I think hubs is actually a little surprised at all I have going on.  When I mention that tomorrow (or later in the day) I'm going to go do...  whatever it is I have scheduled on that day, he's surprised - even though he knows I've been doing these things.  I guess seeing is believing - and if his reactions are any indication, I'm thinking he didn't quite believe my life was so full when he was at work all day.  lol  

But we are also finding ways to be together that we didn't have much opportunity for before...

On Thursday of last week (after hubs and I took an hour-long walk in the cool of the morning), he trimmed some bushes while I power-washed the back of the house, the deck, and a patio area.  It's always an exhausting job, but this time I needed half of the next day to recover.  I've concluded from that that I really need to do some weight training. I thought my right arm was going to fall right off when I tried to sleep that night.  Okay...  yes, that's a little bit of an exaggeration, but exhausted as I was, sleep only came after I finally took several extra strength Ibuprofen.  

This week, I hope to make some progress culling through stuff.  Possibly craft stuff.  Possibly clothes.  Maybe books.  So many choices of things to downsize...  It's a bit of a scary thought, but I'm contemplating photographing my progress (or maybe just photographing what leaves the house).  I think that would be interesting.  Might be motivating.  Could be humiliating.  Hmmm...  We'll see...

Tomorrow hubs is helping his mother out - transporting her to two different doctors' appointments.  She lives about an hour north of us, so that's easy enough to do.  Easy, perhaps isn't the right word, but he's glad to be able to do it, I know. Various ones of us have helped out with these kinds of things in recent years, but it's so good that he can do this more easily now - without taking a day of vacation from work.    

All in all, I'm finding the blessings in hubs' retirement.  And for that perspective I am truly thankful.

I'll try to remember to post more as those blessings occur to me.   😊

Sunday, August 11, 2019

A new beginning...

While I'm still enjoying crocheting my Christmas blanket, I was in serious need of something else to crochet - to break up the monotony a bit.   

I spent a few minutes contemplating a couple of multi-pieced projects that have been languishing, but then I remembered that Helen Shrimpton was beginning an afghan project!  Why do something old when you can do something new?!?

I had made Helen's Mandala Madness years ago so I knew it could be challenging, but doable for me.  This new blanket CAL she's hosting is called Sacred Space.  Seeing that I was only a few weeks behind, I decided to go ahead and jump in.  

It took me most of last week to decide on my color scheme, but wanting to make good use of the huge stash of yarn I already own, I finally landed on making a replica of Melissa Hammersly's (it's the neon-looking one in the collection of pictures at this link).  

I only had to buy black yarn - everything else I'm pulling from stash.   Since I just got started on it yesterday, this is all I've finished:

This is 1/3 of the first section.  I can't wait to get back to it. 

Black yarn isn't necessarily a color I'd choose to work with in such a large project, but Melissa's blanket is striking and I'm finding myself excited to see how all the colors I've chosen will look crocheted up.  And it will be fun to show here how mine changes from week to week.    


Speaking of changes...  Not a whole lot has changed on my mystery cross stitch picture, but here is the latest (as of today):

Here's a little hint:  
Where the needle is is right about where the picture will finish (if I've counted correctly).

The background fabric is still pink, but for some reason photographed as white today.  Some of you were getting warm with your guesses last week - just so ya' know...

And that's a wrap for another week of crafting!  


On retirement:  It's going well.  I started to write a bit here, but decided to post it tomorrow.  If you're curious how it's going, come back! 

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Sunday, August 4, 2019

Guess again!

Another week has flown by that saw just a bit of crocheting on my Christmas blanket and completing a little bit more of my mystery cross stitch.  The guesses were interesting last week on just what this might be, but no one was even close.  Perhaps today's picture gives a bit more of a hint:

You can click on any image to embiggen it in a separate screen.


I did do another little crafty thing.  It's simple really, but it makes me smile and feel just a little clever.

Some background:  This summer I've been helping out a friend by watching her daughter most  Thursdays while mom works.  It's been fun for me (a mom of three grown sons) to spend a little time most weeks with a girl-child.  

We've done a variety of things, but most Thursdays I've tried to get in a little crafting or some "handy" project.  We've tried doodling, painting with watercolor pencils and water brushes, crochet, cooking and baking...  

For this past week's project we got a little messy.

Using cardboard heart-shaped boxes (that were miniature chocolate candy gift boxes), we painted them with some white chalk paint...

then decoupaged them with napkins:

Simple, I know.  If we'd had more time I'd loved to have layered more on these.  And those more experienced with decoupage would have some suggestions for making these fancier.  

But for a quickie little craft, I'm actually kind of impressed that we pulled this off with few hitches  -- other than spilling half the bottle of decoupage medium  😣, tossing a loaded paint brush when a rogue wasp startled my young charge  😲, and lastly... having my cell phone turned off (accidentally) so her mother couldn't reach me for a half hour when she got off work.  😟   I promise...  it was an accident!  She assured me she wasn't worried.  She just texted me and told me to bring her daughter home when I was ready to.  👍   

About 30 minutes after I thought she would have called, I checked my cell phone - and yep.  There was the message (along with the record of calls she tried to make).   And the volume on my phone was turned off.  Checking it later, I saw it was in "airplane" mode.  I have no idea how I had done that! 

I was embarrassed that this happened on my watch, but it was nice to have the extra time to finish our little projects.  😏

School starts next week, so this was our last time together for the summer.  It was fun while it lasted! 

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