Saturday, February 16, 2019

JOY

Look what I found in the $3 Walmart bin -

photo courtesy of imdb.com
Have you ever seen the movie, Secondhand Lions?  It's been years since I've seen it but I remember loving it.  Can't wait to watch it again and I know it will bring me joy.


Friday, February 15, 2019

28 Days of Joy

What do I obsess over almost as much as yarn?


Pens.  Pens bring me joy.  And that's not even half of my pen collection.  That's only the pens that live on the top of my desk.  We won't talk about the drawers and boxes full of pens.  I may actually have more pens than yarn!  

I think I might have a pen problem.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Three on Thursday - Valentines

Welcome to Three on Thursday, Valentine's style.  

Nope, we're not all lovey-dovey, we're just writing in red today.  We're also joining Carole for a backwards Three on Thursday list.

My three...


I had three squares left to knit on my mitered square blanket.


And then there was one square left to knit.


And suddenly, I was done!  What a fantastic feeling!




Happy Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

FO Joy

I'm very joyous today!

socks knit with Regia 6-fadig wool

I finally got around to kitchnering a pair of socks that have been languishing in the Kitchner Me pile for years.  Yes, years!  According to Ravelry, I started them sometime in the first part of 2016. I remember knitting them fairly quickly then tossing them into the dreaded Kitchner Me pile.  

If you couldn't tell, kitchnering is NOT my favorite knitting related task. 

According to Ravelry, the socks are knit with Regia 6-fadig.  They are nice and thick and I'm super excited to have a new pair of socks in the rotation.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

52 Weeks - Favorite Fashion Accessory

This week's 52 Weeks Blog Challenge topic is my biggest fashion accessory.  Considering my idea of fashion is trading the sweatpants for leggings and the old t-shirt with bleach stains for a clean white one...  Fashion obviously isn't my thing.  So, if I have to pick a fashionable accessory, it would be lipstick.

My first 'real job' boss insisted INSISTED you wear lipstick and if you didn't have your own, she'd make you wear hers.  (It was funnier than it sounds.)  And that was the beginning of my lipstick addiction.  

It doesn't have to be lipstick.  Lip balm, lip gloss (as long as it's not sticky) or even plain Vaseline will do.  But I have to have something on my lips and I have to reapply it every 15 minutes.  Okay, that may be a slight exaggeration.  Or not.  The point is, I'm addicted to.... let's just call it lip product.  

Joy, 28 days of Joy, 52 weeks blog challenge, favorite fashion accessory

And nothing brings me more joy than finding Elf's Perfect Peach lip tint on clearance.  I bought three.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Dirty Santa

No, I'm not still going on about Christmas related happenings.

Simple hat knit from Dirty Santa bulky weight yarn
Dirty Santa Hat

I'm talking yarn.  Dirty Santa is this yarn's name.  It's a bulky weight from Knitted Wit that I picked up at my LYS, Center of the Yarniverse, recently.

Hemmed brim hat with fur pompom or poof, hand knit with bulky weight wool.
Dirty Santa

As you can see, the yarn pooled a bit but Sarah was happy with the effect and that's all that mattered.  

I took Sarah to the yarn shop with me in hopes of her talking me out of buying anything.  She's pretty good about that.  She's usually immune to yarn fumes.  Except... apparently not that day.  She saw the skein hanging on the peg on the wall and announced that I was going to knit her a hat with it.  And once I saw the name of the yarn, I had to agree.  There was just no way I could not buy Dirty Santa.  

The hat knit up very quickly and the yarn was a delight to knit with.  I don't normally like to knit with bulky weight - it makes my hands and wrists ache, but this yarn wasn't too bad.  

A fake fur pompom completes the hat and does a fantastic job of covering up my weird decreasing job.  I was running low on yarn and had to get creative.  The hat has a hemmed brim which used more yarn than expected.  After doing the crown decreases, I only had a few inches of yarn left to use for attaching the pompom.

Despite the funky decreasing and a mean game of yarn chicken, Sarah and I are both quite happy with the hat. 


Sunday, February 10, 2019

Sunday Supper - Cornbread

Today's Sunday Supper recipe is cornbread.  My dad probably rolls over in his grave every time I make my version of cornbread because it's nothing like his.  Mine is sweet and almost cake-like but I like what I like...  And this cornbread always brings me joy.

Easy to follow recipe for sweet, cake like cornbread.

Cornbread

2 cups Bisquick
1/2 cup corn meal
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 cup milk
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  
Blend all ingredients together until smooth but be careful not to over stir.  
Pour into a greased 8 x 8 baking dish and bake for 30 - 40 minutes or until top is lightly browned.

Note:  I think our oven is messed up which is why the cooking time fluctuates so much.  Also, using a  well oiled, preheated cast iron frying pan works well and reduces cooking time by about 5 - 10 minutes.

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Friday, February 8, 2019

Burberry #3

What's on my needles these days? 

Burberry cowl knit with Berroco Ginko from Center of the Yarniverse.
Burberry #3

I'm currently knitting a third Burberry cowl.  I just love this pattern.  

This Berroco Ginko yarn is SO soft and spun from silk and wool.
Berroco Ginko

And the yarn!  The yarn is a 52% silk, 48% wool blend and glides through my fingers like butter.  And, my daughter, who is THE most whiny person on earth when it comes to wool on her skin,  loves the navy one she received for Christmas and wears it frequently.  Wears it frequently, against her skin, without complaint.  It's That soft and itch-less! 

So far, this Burberry is well traveled.  I've taken it to three knitting group meetings and to the coffee shop twice with the intent of photographing it in a more interesting setting.... And each time I've been so happy knitting on it, I've forgotten to take the photo.  Thus, you're stuck looking at another boring photo of my knitting spread out on my desk in bad lighting.  Sorry.

28 days of Joy challenge; #challengeyourself; #photochallenge
Open windows in February = Joy!

Besides the joy of knitting another Burberry cowl, I've been enjoying the recent weather.  Look closely at that photo. (Look closely but ignore the poor dying plant.)  The window is open!  We've even been sleeping with the windows open.  Like, open open, not just barely cracked open.  That will change tonight though.  Our temperatures are going to drop steadily today and by tonight we'll be back to our normal icy February weather.  The warm spell was a joy while it lasted, but I have to admit - I'm not ready for winter to be over yet.

And speaking of my poor dying plant - thank goodness for the warm enough to open the window weather!  While opening the window, I noticed my plant's unhappiness.  Somehow, I must have watered it and another one nearby twice and skipped watering the other two that are on the other side of the window.  Two of the plants had almost an inch of standing water in them (as in, standing on top of the dirt!) while the other two were bone dry.  Can you say Alzheimer's???  Yikes!

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Three on Thursday

I've had the urge to do some beaded knitting so today's Three on Thursday topic is, which pattern should I choose?


A beaded lace shawl to knit
Fenberry Shawl

The Fenberry shawl?  This one is my favorite looks-wise, but not the type of thing I'd generally wear.

Garter stitch shawl with a little beading
Smash

Smash?  I like this Pinterest version much better than the version pictured on Ravelry.  Besides, I don't think the Ravelry version is beaded.  There's only a tiny bit of beading so it should be a quick knit but...  I'm a little tired sick to death of garter stitch.

beaded shawl scarf
Charmayne

Or, Charmayne?  Looks to be a pretty simple design and it's the type of thing I'd wear, but that seems like an awful lot of beads.

Each of them would bring me joy.  

Aack!  I can't decide.  

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Easy Ragland

I'm pretty psyched.  I finished my Christmas Eve Cast On Easy Ragland sweater last week.  


Knit with Wool of the Andes from Knit Picks https://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=726901&u=1446317&m=59159&urllink=&afftrack=
Modified Easy Ragland

I still haven't had a chance to block it.  It's looking a little wrinkly and the colorwork stitches will be much improved after a good blocking.  I'm sort of dragging my feet on it now though because the polar vortex has gone away and left us with Glorious 60 degree days.  There's just no incentive at the moment.


Back view of my newest Easy Ragland sweater from Green Mountain Spinnery
back view

The yarn is Knit Picks' Wool of the Andes Mineral Heather (main color) and Blossom Heather (contrasting color) and the pattern is Easy Ragland from Green Mountain Spinnery.  

I made a few pattern adjustments.  First, I did my own version of a mock cable instead of the suggested ribbing.  I lengthened the body several inches (I'm tall!) and I added the colorwork.  

I wish I'd put a little more thought into the colorwork.  It was one of those 4:00 a.m. decisions.  You know the kind.... I've already knit a few inches of purple stockinette, I'm bored and I have a million, jillion more miles of purple stockinette in front of me.... Let's throw in some color.  

The color design worked out okay but there are a few things that bug me about it.  First, it's squared off instead of rounded like most sweater yokes.  The sweater pattern's ragland shaping calls for yarn over increases which caused the squaredness.  It also caused some of the stitches on the increase line to look a little funky.  Hopefully blocking will help that.

added color work and mock cable neckline
details

Otherwise, I'm pleased with this sweater.  It fits perfectly.  Oh, that's another modification I made - I did the sleeve decreases every 3/4 inch instead of every inch.  I've knit this sweater many times before and the sleeves always end up being too big and puffy just above the wrist cuffs.  

If you're interested, the colorwork design is Beacon from Alterknit Stitch Dictionary.

As for today's Joy photo, besides being happy about my sweater,


28 days of Joy, #challengeyourself
open sun roof

As I mentioned, the polar vortex is gone.  We are now experiencing 60+ degree days.  I ran errands all day yesterday with the sun roof wide open.  There is just nothing better than the sun shining on your face through an open sun roof after multiple zero degree days.


Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Accents

No, not that kind of Accent.

A paper or ebook of simple but beautiful knitting patterns for modern accessories.
Accents by Knit Picks

This kind of Accent.  Have you taken a look at this new book from Knit Picks?  I want to knit all the patterns  Out of the eighteen patterns included in the book, there is only one that I will most likely not knit.  Not only are the designs pretty and wearable, they also look fairly easy to knit.  

Accents arrived in my mail box just the other day and it's already bringing my joy.  (Yes, it comes in paper or ebook format and I tend to prefer the paper form.)  I would have tossed all my current projects into the UFO pile but I ran into a slight snag with the book.  I can't decide what to knit first.

Take a look at the designs and let me know which one you'd choose.

Monday, February 4, 2019

52 Weeks - Celebrity Crushes

Today's 52 week blog challenge topic is, who is my biggest celebrity crush?

That's easy.  Jason Momoa.

Jason Momoa and Henry Cavill, photo courtesy of thewrap.com

And Henry Cavill.

Henry Cavill, photo courtesy of henrycavill.org

Did I mention Jason Momoa?

photo courtesy of staradvertiser.com

Oh, and Chris Hemsworth.

Chris Hemsworth, photo courtesy of dailymail.co.uk

It's not like I have a 'type' or anything.  And because, well...

photo courtesy of pinterest.com

And last on the list, but not in my heart - Charlie Hunnam. 

Charlie Hunnam, photo courtesy of pinterest.com

And I can't say it enough, Jason Momoa.

photo courtesy of eonline.com
Okay, maybe I do have a 'type.'

(And I think it goes without saying,  this post qualifies for my 28 days of joy challenge.)

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Sunday Supper

We are trying to eat a little healthier so this week's Sunday Supper recipe is for a simple vegetable dip we'll eat during the Super Bowl.  I've never made it before and it's not exactly 'healthy' but.... At least there will be vegetables involved.

Vegetable Dip

1/4 cup softened butter
3/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (the real stuff, not the jarred kind)
1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning

Mix well. 
Refrigerate.
Serve with vegetables.

It doesn't get any simpler than that!

As for today's moment of joy,

Fake Uggs on clearance at Target
Not Uggs
I am SO excited!  I found fake Uggs on clearance at Target yesterday.  And they had my size!  And I had my choice of black or brown!  I chose black because they look less Ugg-y.  Can't say that I'm a huge Ugg fan, but I am a fan of how warm they are.  And now my feet are toasty warm and feeling joyful.


Saturday, February 2, 2019

28 Days of Joy

I've accepted a February challenge to post a daily photo of something that brings me joy.  Actually, the challenge is to post a photo of something related to my 2019 word - which happens to be Joy. 

Although not labeled as such, yesterday's post qualifies.  While all those empty boxes on my new Uncalendar are intimidating, they are going to bring me much joy.  I know this because I've already made a huge, giant mess of the first week and yet I'm still happy with it. 

Anyway.... Let's get on with today's photo.

Larry the Lama brings me joy.  Joy is my 2019 word of the year.
Knitting with Larry the Lama



Friday, February 1, 2019

February and the Uncalendar

Happy February!  Pretty much everyone I know is celebrating the passing of January but honestly, I'm a little sad to see it go.  I'll be returning to work soon and I'm not mentally prepared.  And surprisingly, I'm enjoying the cold weather.  Granted, I'm in Virginia and our coldest has only been 3 degrees, not the -50 degrees they saw/are seeing in other parts of the country.  Also, being currently unemployed, I get spend my days curled up under a warm, fuzzy blanket with my knitting in hand.  What's not to love about that?

But enough about the weather.

I'd planned to talk about knitting in this post but I got distracted.

an undated planner system
Uncalendar

I received my Uncalendar today.  I've been anxiously awaiting its arrival but now that it's here, I'm frozen.

Have you heard of the Uncalendar?  It's an undated planner system geared for the list makers of the world.  It has an annual goals page, regular month-at-a-glance pages, these fabulous weekly pages and some awesome Notes pages.  Both the weekly calendar and the Notes are two-page spreads with one of the pages being full of various sized and unlabeled boxes.  You can put anything you want to in those boxes! The possibilities are endless...  And thus the reason for my frozen state.  I'm overwhelmed by the possibilities. 

I'm a list maker at heart though so I'm sure it won't take me long to fill those boxes.  Give me a week or two and I'll be complaining that I need more boxes.

Meanwhile, if you use the Uncalendar and have any tips or suggestions on fun, productive ways to use the pages, I'd love to hear from you.