Sunday, February 28, 2010

Mystery Knitting Project~She's Got Arms!

I'm happy to share that my little bunny has arms! *Ü* When I was at the tire shop yesterday, I didn't mind waiting in the least because I brought along my knitting. What a great time to work on a project without being interrupted. It gave me a good jump on the arms. I finished the knitting and stuffing last night and popped them in place this morning. Now I can work on the outfit. Yay!

I also did some Spring/Easter shopping and got some items to put together my porch as of now, and the breakfast bar. I have to do some clean up before I take pictures, so I'll probably share tomorrow. I scored some fun finds at the Dollar Tree and some super pretty butterflies at Joann's. As I was putting the decorations out, the girls told me that they loved that I did "themes" as they call it. I'm so glad. Prior to my recent thrift store shopping, I didn't decorate much because everything cost so much. Now that I'm in "frugal mode" I'm training my eye to see the bargains that still look pretty good. It's been a lot of fun!

I hope you are having a super Sunday. I'm gonna go work on the bunny's outfit now. I don't want her to be "nekkid" for too long. *Ü*

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Egg Garland...Yes, another project in the works!

Well, sorry friends, I never did make it out to the craft room. I ended up at the tire place getting four new tires on the Saturn, then I did my thrift store shopping and by the time I got done with all that, I wasn't in the mood to work on cards. I was in the mood to work on the bunny, so that's what I did. I also started a new project for my holiday/theme decorating (yes, I am don't have to tell me...LOL) One of my stops today was at Joann's. I like to see if they have any new books/magazines I can't live without. LOL Thankfully, I didn't find any. Well, I found a pattern in a crochet magazine for an egg garland, which I thought would look neat on my porch. Only, I didn't really want the whole magazine (because I couldn't use a coupon since it was 10% off). When I got home, I searched for a crochet pattern to make an egg and my searches kept taking me back to that magazine I looked at. LOL Well, I dug a little more and found a website that had the pattern for just the egg and it was a download, so I snagged that and tried making one. The pattern called for using that really small crochet thread I use to make the Barbie clothes, but I wanted to try it with worsted weight yarn. So, I took a break from the bunny arms and tried the pattern. This pink egg is the result. I may try with the crochet thread too, so I can see the difference. I like how it came out and it was pretty quick to do. I'm going to try it in several spring colors.

I'm having a hard time finding my motivation to work on cards these days. However, you can see I am clearly motivated to work with yarn. I hope that's okay with you and you don't mind not seeing cards too awfully much.

Thanks for stopping by! Hope your weekend is going great!


Mystery Knitting Project...Revealed...Sort of...

Those of you who thought I was making an Easter Bunny are partially right, as you can see. *Ü* It IS a bunny, but not specifically an Easter Bunny. She's also a bunny without arms at this point. LOL I'm just following the pattern, making the pieces in the order they are shown. Next up will be the arms. I've surprised myself at how quickly the head came together. And I really like how her personality is emerging with her eyes and mouth.

I didn't do what the pattern indicated for the face. I really like the oval shaped eyes and decided to use them. And I back-stitched the nose and mouth. The pattern showed these items being made with French knots. I'm not a huge fan of making French knots, mainly because I can't get the size consistent. So, I didn't even go there and saved myself some frustration. LOL

Even after the arms are made, she won't be complete as she will be wearing an outfit. I'm excited to get to that point. So, there will be more reveals upcoming. *Ü*

I hope you have a wonderful weekend. It will feel a little like Spring here today, with temps near 50, I've heard, but it won't last. Mother Nature is such a tease...there's snow predicted soon as well.

Thanks again for stopping by. I may, possibly, head out to my craft room today. No promises, but if I do, I'll share!

Friday, February 26, 2010

We've Got Spirit and Sock Creatures...

First of all, I have to extend my heartfelt gratitude over your kindness and support at my grandmother's passing. It means a great deal. Thank you!

We survived our busy afternoon and even made it to swim class a little early! Whooo hooo!

The Spirit Assembly was a lot of fun. I ended up announcing the teachers for a lot longer than I anticipated, but it was fun. We had the teachers come down one at a time and they pulled two students' names from the container. Then they had the choice to shoot baskets for a minute or jumprope for a minute and see how many baskets or jumps they made. Or the could choose to have a scooter race. It was close for a while, but in the end the teachers got more points. My Amy was called up by her teacher. Yay! They chose to jumprope. Amy jumped 59 times in a minute, but her teacher jumped 80!

Amy said she was a little nervous, but she had fun. Her face is red because it got darn hot in the gym. LOL Oh and don't mind her clothes. She dresses herself and is currently in love with those brown boots. I don't really care what they wear, as long as it is appropriate for the weather and follows school rules. We don't hassle over getting dressed for school at all. *Ü*

Right after school, we headed to the art room for the sock creature making class (I called it a puppet, I called it the wrong thing.

They had a blast and actually did most of the work. I had to help them with just a little bit of sewing, but other than that, it's all their work. So fun. *Ü*

They didn't have school today (nor do they have school NEXT Friday) and after I got them to do a decent amount of purging (clothes and a huge number of books they are too old for now) in their room, we dropped off the items at Goodwill, then headed over to the Butterfly Pavilion for a couple of hours. Amy was anxious to hold Rosie (the tarantula) again, Jess, not so much. LOL We enjoyed the visit, especially the new exhibits they had out. The area that used to house the over-sized insect exhibit is currently a maze with different activities for the kids to do to learn about butterflies and insects. The most popular portion of the maze was the zip line. Yep, they got to hang on and fly a bit like a butterfly. I didn't take my camera and the battery was out on my phone I found out (oops), so I didn't get any pictures. Oh well. On the way home we stopped at McD's. So, they've had a pretty good day.

I'm loving all the guesses on the project I'm creating. You are pretty darn smart! I think my next picture will reveal just what it is (and you can pat yourself on the back). It won't be done at that point, but getting closer!

Thanks again for your encouragement and support. You all are the best! Hope you have a great start to your weekend!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Mystery Knitting Project...Once Again

Hi there!

Well, here is the next part of the pattern for my mystery knitting project. It sounds like you are enjoying seeing this put together piece by piece. I'm glad, because I am having fun showing you bit by bit. *Ü* So, what do you think these are? I like the texture of these pieces, although having to knit one and purl one slows me down. For someone who is not the fastest knitter, this can get a smidge frustrating. I'm happy to say I fell into a groove and the second one came together much faster than the first. The end result is definitely worth the time it took, I think.

Not only have I been working on this knitting project this week, I was also working on another one, but in crochet.

I'm teasing you yet again, but for a good reason. I promise I'll show it off soon. Meanwhile, enjoy this little snippet.

In other news, my dad emailed us Sunday to let us know he was flying out to International Falls, MN on Monday. My grandmother got pneumonia a week or so ago and wasn't responding to treatment. The nurse told my dad that she was in the process of dying. He spoke to her on Saturday, when he got the call and she recognized him, but she hadn't eaten for several days, so it was not looking good. He arrived on Monday evening and saw her. She recognized him again, but couldn't speak at this point. I'm sorry to share that she passed away on Tuesday morning. My dad was at her bedside and said it was very peaceful. My grandmother was 98 years old and had a good long life. I had seen her a few times, but growing up with her living in MN and us in CA, visits were few and far between. I got to know her better than my other grandparents who died either before I was born or when I was very young. One thing I'll always remember are her "bangs." She made bread from scratch and always took part of the dough to create deep fried donuts, which we called "bangs" in my house. Talk about one of the yummiest treats one can have! Yum! Rest in peace, Grandma, I love you, but know you are with my mom now and watching over us.

Yesterday I had a strange feeling in my throat. It didn't exactly hurt, but it didn't feel right. So, I laid low as much as I could so as not to allow it to burst into a full fledged sore throat. (I normally volunteer at the school on Wednesdays, but didn't want to infect Jessica's classmates-so I stayed home). Thankfully, today it feels back to normal! Yay! (and whew!)

This week has been Spirit Week for the girls at school. They wore "crazy" hats one day (really they weren't that crazy but I didn't tell them that). They wore pajamas one day, yesterday school colors and today they get to wear a professional sports team shirt (Go Broncos!) As part of Spirit Week, they will be having an assembly after lunch where the teachers compete against the students (chosen by raffle tickets they earned by participating in the above days) in various activities. I didn't know about it until too late last year, but I agreed to help today, so I'll be going to that. Right after school is the Sock Puppet Making Class the girls wanted to take, then we have swim class. It's gonna be a busy afternoon! But it should be fun.

Last night I attended an informational meeting at our elementary school. It has been selected to become an IB (International Baccalaureate) school, Primary Years Program. It is a program that focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside. What it means is that our school will shift to being a kind of magnet school where they will teach units of study that incorporate all the subjects and additionally, they will be taught Spanish. It's a more rigorous academic program. It sounds like an enhanced version of what they already do there, but there is a ton of support for the staff to make it work. There is middle school that has the IB program (not our home school though) and our home school high school also offers the same type of program. Because our elementary school is our home school, the girls are automatically in the program, and they will offer 100 spots for other students. It's going to be interesting and exciting to see how this works. The teachers are staff are very excited about this, which is terrific.

Okay, I've got to gather up supplies for the puppet class, so I will close for now. Thanks so much for stopping by! I hope to share again in a few days. In the meantime, I appreciate your time and encouraging thoughts.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Mystery Knitting Project...continued

It's been a cold, snowy type day today and I felt like knitting. I got the next part of the knitting project done. So, I thought I'd share. Barbara, it's not a Crochet Gourmet doll, but that is a great guess. It's not a ballerina either.

I think you can tell by now it's a doll of some sort (headless at the moment, which looks a little strange, doesn't it?). Hmmmm, I wonder what type of doll it will become???

Thanks for stopping by and indulging me in sharing this bit by bit. We'll see how long it takes for me to complete the next part. *Ü*


Had to Share!

Hi there!

I'm blog reading this morning and just came across this post at Someday Crafts and my jaw dropped. There are some wonderfully creative people out there! I never, in a million years, would have thought to do something like this with those swirly clips. In fact, I just might have purged a bunch of them because I didn't know what to do with them. Sigh...Isn't this cool looking though? I think my friend, Erin, would really be able to play with this idea and come up with something spectacular!

Here's the link on how it was done.

Blogs are fabulous!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Mystery Knitting Project...

Hi there!

Before I get to my latest project, I wanted to thank you for all the wonderful comments on my Haiti Blog Hop(e) card. You sure know how to put a smile on my face.  The auction for the cards is live now and you can find mine here on Ebay. Here's the link for the page with all the cards listed. See if there is a card there you've got to have. It's for a great cause. *Ü* Thanks!

I also played around with my blog a little more and I think the side bar is now fixed. I even added a page "about me." I'm thinking about other pages I might add, but am not sure just what else would be of interest. I'll let it percolate awhile. If you have a suggestion, I'm all ears!

Remember the other day when I posted this picture?

And I wondered what it could be? Christi made me laugh out loud when she wrote dog muzzles! Too funny, Christi. I can say with certainty as much as I'd like to put a muzzle on that dog, nope, wrong...thanks for trying. And, by the way, the dog has been kept in the house for the most part this past week, which has been wonderful. Let's hope it continues.

 I thought it might be fun to share pictures of my progress and you can keep guessing if you want. If you find it too annoying, just let me know and I'll stop.
Here's today's progress picture...

I'm learning loads of new things as I work on this and I love it! The creator of the pattern has been super friendly and helpful when I've emailed her questions about the pattern. I can't wait to share her website with you. But I'm going to wait, or you will figure it out too soon. LOL

Thanks so much for stopping by. I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Rinse and Repeat

If you are looking for the Hop(e) for Haiti post, please click {here} You won't regret hopping, I guarantee you. The cards up for auction are just gorgeous and I'm so honored to have been asked to participate with such talented ladies!

Why rinse and repeat? Well, because after about 2 weeks of blissful nighttime silence(or manageable noise), the quiet was definitely broken last night. Yep, the dog was at it again. Sigh. Started barking around 7pm (that I noticed...could have been earlier, but it's possible I was too distracted to notice). Barked all evening until about 10pm when I wanted to go to bed. Showed no signs of stopping, so I called the non emergency line for the police to report it. Went to bed and read til about 11pm (which is late for me, but the dog was keeping me up, too). Fell asleep to the sound of barking and woke up at midnight. Dog was still barking. Managed to fall asleep and was woken up at about 1am (yep, still barking). Managed to fall asleep again to be woken up AGAIN at 2am or so by the barking. So that's from 7pm to 2am (or thereabouts) that I am aware of. I must have been so tired at that point I slept til about 5:30 this morning. No barking so far today. I've seen the dog, but of course, he could be just plain tired from all the nighttime barking. Sheesh! I called the city today and was informed that the owners didn't get served their ticket for the last time until January 28th, because no one was ever home when they went by to serve it. So, what, approximately 2 weeks or so until they decided they didn't need to keep the dog in the house anymore?? I was also informed that the first ticket hasn't been processed fully yet, and if they issue a second one at this point, one will definitely be thrown out. So, they are adding notes to the file. Joy.

So that's why I wrote rinse and repeat as my title. The saga continues...

I didn't want to leave you with just discouraging news, so I thought I'd tease you a little instead (hee, hee). Even though I said I was putting down the knitting needles for a while, I've already picked them back up and started a new project. Hmmmmmm....I wonder what it could be??? I guess we'll wait and see now won't we? LOLOLOLOLOL

And I've been thrift store shopping...I found some neat things too. Right after I saw this post, which I thought was really cool, I found this at the thrift store. 

And I thought it was too neat to ignore (especially at only $8!). So I brought it home and put it by the couch. I still need to clean it up a bit and figure out how to stabilize it just a bit. It's a rolling tray thingamabob(nice and technical term for something I'm not sure what the real name is). I'm going to use it for decorating for different holidays/seasons.

I found the tiered basket too. And some bunnies, but I'm holding off on showing those just yet.

For now it's housing some yarn, some swim goggles and Barb's treats (the swim goggles showed up after I put Barb's treat holders in there) and Amy's valentines. I plan on using this for entertaining when we have parties. My friend Susi uses something similar when she has parties for the kids and she loads each basket with yummy goodies. And I want to be more like Susi when I grow up, so I'm copying her idea. LOL

Hope you have a great day! I think I need a nap now. LOL

Today's the Day~Hop(e) For Haiti Blog Hop!

Welcome to Skipping Stones Design’s Blog Hop(e) for Haiti. If you just happened upon my blog today, you’ll want to go back to the beginning at Skipping Stones Design.  You should have come from Jenni Harper’s blog. 

As a company, we wanted to do something to give back to the people who have been so devastated by the Haitian Earthquake.  So we thought what better way than to invite some of our favorite stampers to join us in this cause.  Each card you see on the blog hop today will be auctioned on E-bay with all proceeds going to the Red Cross in support of the Haitian Relief Effort (please check the Skipping Stones Design Website for the link to the auction).  100% of the proceeds of the Ebay auction and $2.00 from every stamp set purchased from February 16 - 22 will be donated to the Red Cross. We know that we can make a difference. 

Thank you for stopping by and your next blog to hop to is Bev Rousch.

Here is my contribution to this worthy cause. My stamp set is Rustic Tiles.

I love the possibilities that this set offers and I had a lot of fun playing with them. I used DCWV's new paper stack called Linen Closet for my papers and I just love the vintage feel I think I was able to create. The blue background paper is shimmery (although I'm not quite sure it comes across in the photos). I used CTMH's Dutch Blue ink to get the monochromatic look. For the striped piece, I inked one of the tile images with Versamark and heat embossed clear embossing powder. Initially I was just going to ink the edges, but decided to rub CTMH's Bamboo ink all over it and loved the look. The circle tile element is inked with Versamark first, then inked in Desert Sand (CTMH) and heat embossed with clear embossing powder. A pearl brad through the center (from Michaels' bridal department) and a mat of coordinating paper finished the look. This piece is popped up with pop dots.

I really wanted to do some crocheting on this card, so I looked through some books in my stash and found the patterns for the scallop piece and the border element. I used a 30 weight DMC cotton thread to create them. The addition of the pearls completed the look I was going for. I decided to dress up the flap of the envelope a bit, too.

This was my first experience with Skipping Stone Designs stamps and I have to tell you they are wonderful! They ink up so well right from the start. They are definitely quality stamps and the designs on the Rustic Tiles set are so interesting, I can't wait to play more with them. (I'm not affiliated with the company at all, I just wanted to share how much I enjoyed using these stamps)

Thank you so much for visiting. Have fun on the hop! Remember, your next stop is Bev Rousch.

How about a prize? In addition to the fabulous eye candy, we have decided to hide a prize somewhere along the hop! There will be a few pre-release sets up for grabs hidden along the blog hop.  The fun part is...we're not telling you who it is! So as you hop, make sure you leave comments on every post so you have a chance to win!!

If there is a break somewhere along the way,  there will be a master list at:

Order of participants:
Skipping Stones Design
Jeanne Tomshack   <------that's me! *Ü*
Belinda Chang Langer


Sunday, February 14, 2010

Sweet Valentines

Happy Valentine's Day! Hope it's been a sweet one for you like it has been for me.

As you can see, I managed to create one more thing to help decorate for the holiday. I just finished putting the garland together this morning, but I've been crocheting the hearts for a day or so. There are 9 in all. They are "Granny Hearts," a version of a granny square. I'm sorry the pictures didn't come out better, but I think you get the idea. Anyway, I've wanted to create a heart garland to take the place of the snowflake one I had up for my winter decorations, but I was having trouble finding a heart pattern I liked. Wait, I take that back, I did find one I liked and made one heart, then got side tracked by wanting to finish Amy's giraffe. When I sat down to make the next heart, I couldn't get it to come out right at all. I don't know why. Obviously, I figured it out once, but I couldn't do it again to save my life! I about gave up on it for this year, but then I came across this tutorial on a fairly new to me blog called The Royal Sisters and I fell in love with the hearts. (about as much as I fell in love with the blog itself-lots of crochet goodness there) Granny squares are pretty easy to create because there are lots of double crochets, one of my favorite stitches! I made 9 hearts and then worked a cord of sorts to connect them. I'm so tickled I got it created. I will leave up the decorations for a while yet, so I'll be able to enjoy them. *Ü*



Here's what the girls created for me. Apparently, unbeknownst to me, Steve took them to Lowe's yesterday for their kids building project, which happened to be a jewelry holder. (don't you love the bed head?) Steve picked up the plant for me while they were there. The necklace hanging on display was not a gift this year, it was one I already owned, Amy grabbed it to show me how the holder worked. They also made me two of the sweetest cards! Oh and Jessica informed me I wasn't getting her jewelry hold, since I got Amy's and I didn't need two of them. Okay then! They had fun and that's all that matters.

I also received a couple of surprises in the mail. My sweet blogging buddies Kim and Barb decided to spoil me!
Isn't this a lovely card? Thanks so much for thinking of me, Kim!!

And Barb just blew me away. Look at the goodies she included in the "candy" rolls! I love the flowers and of course, the chocolate! I wonder if she thinks that is what I do all day? Sit on the couch and eat chocolates?(Nah, she's a mom, too, but one can dream right?) Barb, you are just too sweet! Thanks so much for spoiling me!

I spent a couple of hours in my craft room, too. But unfortunately, I can't share what I created just yet. It's for the upcoming Blog Hop(e) for Haiti, so you'll just have to be patient until Tuesday.

I went to our local take and bake pizza place and picked up a heart shaped pepperoni pizza for dinner tonight. Yum!

Thanks so much for stopping by and for your sweet comments about the treats I made for the girls. I'm so NOT any best mom ever as the number of times Jessica decides not to love me anymore when she's mad at me can attest! I just have fun creating and they get the benefit (?) of those efforts.

Happy Valentine's Day to you!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Rice Krispies Valentine Hearts

When I saw this idea shared on the Creative Crate blog, I knew I had to try it as a surprise for the girls and their buddies that we hang out with after school. After helping out in Jessica's class with their Valentine Breakfast this morning, I headed home to begin my project. (Amy's class was doing different Valentine activities throughout the day, they didn't have a party like Jessica's class so I didn't go to her class).

Okay, I'm gonna keep it real here! The idea sounded easy enough. Make Rice Krispie treats, cut out into heart shapes, put in fridge to set and dip into chocolate and sprinkle. Not hard, huh? Well, here's the first batch...

Yep, they fell apart! Argghhhhhh! They apparently weren't set enough(even though they'd been in the fridge for about 15 minutes). So, I tried sticking the next batch into the freezer. Then my dad called and they stayed in the freezer a bit longer than I had planned(oops). They look a smidge better!
(they are on waxed paper, if you couldn't tell). I stuck them upright to let the chocolate set, but I noticed some were still drooping as they warmed up, so after the chocolate set,  I kept them horizontal.
To package them up, I used the idea from the gal on the blog...I got some baggies and cut off the zipper opening, then tied a bit of yarn to close it up.

There were "leftover" scraps that I didn't to just throw away (nor did I want to eat them, I'd sampled a bit of my globby mess in the first picture), then it occurred to me to make Rice Krispie balls. 

By this time I was running out of the melted chocolate, so not all of them got dipped, but I tried shaking some sprinkles on the chocolate-less ones.

It turned out to be a bit more work to create these than I'd anticipated and if I did it again, I wouldn't try to put sticks in them, or make up a large number of balls to dip. LOL

The girls loved them, so it was worth the effort! *Ü*

Hope you are having a happy Friday! Thanks for stopping by!