Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Bunny Fun

This past weekend we spent Saturday hanging around the house, working on the deck, and doing a little watercolor painting. We ended the day with a date night at a Korean restaurant. It was AMAZING. We long ago fell in love with Korean dishes and it was something I missed terribly when I couldn't eat anything but chicken. It was so yummy and I think a seafood and vegetable pancake might be a new food addiction! We woke up early Sunday and drove to my brother's house for a little Easter day. Nephew R was too cute searching for the eggs that the bunny left. He was very intent on finding the eggs and was thrilled with the contents. I also got to meet the newest family puppy member. Isn't she adorable? I'm not feeling all that great this week, so I'll let the photos entertain you for now. (The good news is that spring is here. The bad news is that spring is here with pollen.)








Monday, April 21, 2014

Spring Is Starting to Spring!



Our magnolia bush is starting to bloom and they are so pretty! I had to get a bunch of photos taken for some design releases and for some made items I will be posting to Etsy. I opted to take a lot of them in front of this bush because it was such a pretty backdrop. While I was working on new designs, Kennedy was posing around the yard and enjoying the pretty day.




"I need a haircut!"


Meanwhile, Riley is still in winter hibernation.


Patrick has been busy turning this sad little patio slab into a deck. Because our door is so low to the ground, he doesn't have to go up in height, which makes the do-it-yourself deck much easier. The bottom is about 75% in and the poor pups keep jumping over them to get out in the yard. Not so easy when you are mostly blind, like Riley. But, they will love it when it is done and they can curl up on it under the umbrella. Oh, I can't wait for it to be all done! I plan to sit out there and work and read all summer!!!


Friday, April 18, 2014

Millie Infinity Scarf: A New Pattern from Brownie Knits!

A few weeks back I blogged about my obsession with infinity and silk scarves. Well, of course, that meant I needed some knitted ones for spring! Over the last few months, while I dreamed of spring, I have been working up a new pattern and today it is now available for purchase! Please meet Millie...


I had to get Kiki in on some of the photos...


...she wasn't into it! Check out that look in her eye.


The pattern is available for $2.99 in Ravelry, Craftsy, and Etsy.

Millie is a lightweight infinity scarf for spring and summer or for a warmer winter climate. Wear it with a jacket or as an accessory to your outfit. Millie is reversible and can be worn in a variety of styles, including around the neck (singled or doubled) or looped. Knitting a Millie Infinity Scarf is such fun because you can select a painted, variegated, or solid sock yarn, and because it is knit on larger-than normal needles for sock weight, the scarf works up quickly. The pattern is an easy one to remember and you fall into a knitting rhythm as you work in the round.


Level: Intermediate
Sizing:
50 inch circumference unblocked
60 inch circumference blocked



400 yards (366 meters) of sock weight yarn
Painted sample knit out of Three Irish Girls Adorn Sock in color Octopus’ Garden (430 yards/394 meters; 80% merino, 20% nylon); this colorway is sold exclusively at A Good Yarn in Sarasota, Florida 

Solid sample knit out of Yarn Love Juliet in color Sugared Grapefruit (420 yards/384 meters; 80%
merino, 20% nylon)

Other good yarn options: Knit Picks Hawthorne and Shibui Knits Sock



US 5 (3.75mm) 32-inch circular
or size needed to get gauge


Notions: 
Row counter (optional)
Scissors
Stitch marker
Tape measure
Tapestry needle
Yarn scale or food scale (useful, but not required)



Gauge:
5 sts / 8 rounds over Spiral stitch in pattern = 1 inch



Not a knitter but want a Millie? Send us a convo in Etsy and we can custom-make one for you! 


Want a warmer winter version? Check out the Brownie Knits Tressie Cowl pattern!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Bernie the Bunny

This Thursday was watercolor Thursday. I simply love those days. This one happened to offer some extra good news in the form of oncology test results that were all good. As I put it to another lady who is going through tests with her husband, you live a double life. In between your appointments, you put it out of your mind and live life. Then, you have to deal with the appointment and the waiting before you get to (hopefully) forget about it again. Anyway, this class was a pin and ink study combined with the watercolor after you place on the ink.


I named my bunny Bernie. He is actually painted on a card, but I plan to frame it up to put out each Easter season. I did a pencil outline of the bunny and the flowers and then applied the ink for his fur. Next, I placed the watercolor on the bunny and flowers. Finally, I added in the green and ink outlined my flowers. 


My favorite portions are the bunny himself...his ink fur came out great and I LOVED how his fur coloring came out! I felt like the motion of his fur came alive. He looks all nestled in the flower bed.


It goes really well with this flower study we did last year. I hope I can find a matching frame for Bernie! After art class and the good phone call, I was energized and we snuck in a photo shoot in the beautiful afternoon weather. So excited to release a new knit design very soon and then a crocheted one!!! Both are spring designs that will carry well through summer and fall, too. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Take Me Out to the Ball Game...

This past weekend we experienced BEAUTIFUL weather. It worked out that the baseball game for which I got PK tickets for his birthday fell on one of these amazing weather days. When I ordered the tickets, I expected to be there in a sweatshirt and coat. Instead, it was shorts and flip flop weather! We both actually got a little sunburn even! Patrick loves the Rays and they were playing the Reds. So, off to the Great American Ballpark we went.


I don't think I can fully express how awesome it was to feel the sun again AND to feel good. The last Reds game we attended, we had to leave early because I was in so much pain. It was a totally different experience now. I was able to enjoy the day, eat without worry that I was going to become sick, and just feel alive again. 



We wore our Rays gear and every time we do wear this to away games, fans start up conversations with us and are super nice. I'm not sure you would get that reception in every ballpark, but we do here in the Midwest! The Rays lost, but the good thing is that the Reds are Patrick's next favorite team, so he sort of won either way. How much fun the day was!



Thursday, April 10, 2014

Mobius Cowl Finished and Blocked

Yeah for the sun!!! It was so pretty out yesterday. I ventured out to lunch with a dear friend who has been so supportive this past six months. Her church makes prayer shawls and I've been spring de-stashing and donated a bunch of yarn to their cause along with my 40 for 40 projects. It feels so good to be able to share your passion with others. After some fun catching up and some yummy pizza, I came home and blocked the mobius cowl so that I could snap some photos.


Pattern: #28 Mobius Cowl from Vogue Knitting
Needle: US 3
Yarn: Koigu


I really enjoyed knitting this project. It is made in the round and then the two ends are connected after you twist it. I did something I don't normally do and tied all the ends (LOTS) and left them on the interior side that is seamed shut. It worked out really well. I had been thinking I wouldn't break this out to wear until next fall, but it is pretty bright and cheerful so I might wear it during some the spring days next week that are only supposed to top the 30s. (Although, I would be more than happy not to have that weather prediction be accurate!)

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Shuttle Tatting

Back at Christmas I was gifted a bunch of classes to Craftsy.com. Most of the classes I'm enrolled in are centered around knitting, but I also enrolled in Shuttle Tatting. At the end of last week and the beginning of this one, I've been giving it all a go. This class didn't require much in the way of materials...a shuttle and some thread. (On a side note, I would recommend starting with size 3 crochet thread. I originally tried much thinner thread and it was super frustrating. After switching to the 3, it all fell into place.) And now for the "big" reveal!


This little butterfly was my first project. It doesn't look like much, but it uses all the basics of tatting (or so I've been told). My goal in learning to shuttle tatting is to make some snowflake ornaments for the Christmas tree. They are just so beautiful and classic.


There are different shuttles out there. I purchased this plastic one and another plastic one with a removable bobbin and a crochet hook on it. I found that as a beginner it was easier to tat with this larger one. It felt more controlled than the smaller one with the bobbin. You unwind the thread from the center of this one instead of having to fuss with getting the bobbin to move, too. It makes this little click sound each time you pull the thread and the sound puts me in the mind of the clicks on the show 24! Oh, how the mind connects things. I can't imagine Jack Bauer tatting, but if it got him out of a jam, he probably could do it, too!


These are my practice pieces. Nothing great, but I kept going on it until I got the "flip" mastered.