Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Where did this year go?????

Can you believe it's almost December already??? I can't believe 2005 is almost over already. Time just whizzed right by me! And as usual, I'm staring Christmas right down the stocking opening....and I have nothing done yet. lol. Every year I say I'm going to get started early, and every year I don't. At least this year, I can say I do have some good excuses. We moved in January. The baby takes up a lot of my time these days. And, I have had 3 teenagers to keep track of. So....I'm not being too hard on myself about being behind on holiday preparations.

Maybe next year I will have time to make handmade ornaments to hand out at Thanksgiving, etc, etc like I have always wanted to. And maybe next year I will have time to make more handmade gifts. My family members seem to really love afghans, knitted scarves, mittens, etc....but I just didn't have time this year.

I will do better in 2006. *crossing fingers*

I bought the January issue of Creative Knitting yesterday at the grocery store. It had the cutest round knitted dishcloth pattern in it. I couldn't resist and made one last night....

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I did make a slight boo-boo.....as you can see the bottom stripes don't match up. But it's a dishcloth, and will wash dishes just fine with faulty stripes. :) I will be sure not to make boo-boos in the ones I'll be sending out to other people. It's a fun pattern. There are also some gorgeous sweater patterns in the January issue -- well worth buying. :)

It has rained here all day today. The cats are all lazing around the house today. Especially Grover. Look at this silly cat....

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He is such a lazy little thing. He's certainly filled out since we brought him home as a neglected skin and bones kitten a few months ago. I have informed him that he's a charlatan though. He's not really a black cat.....he has 4 white hairs on his back. I make sure to remind him every day that he's a faux black cat. Not that he cares. As long as his sand box is clean and his food bowl is full, he doesn't care much about anything.

This blog is nearly a year old! :) And it's about ready to reach the 30,000 hits mark. Not too shabby for its first year! I'm going to be posting a contest soon, with the winner getting a nice prize of yarn and other goodies from yours truly. I will post details later this week.


Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Finally, I got in some quality knitting time last night! We rented movies, and I worked on a scarf. :)

I'm making the Wavy scarf from Knitty.com out of Lion Brand Wool Prints. The color is called Autumn Sunset. When I first looked at the pattern, it took me a few rows to figure out what the designer meant by "work each stitch as it appears.'' Then it dawned on me that it meant to stitch each as it appears on the side that's facing. A purl looks like a knit stitch if you look at it from the backside. I had to pull out my first few rows and start again.....but, hey, I learned something new. :)

Here's my progress so far:

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The pattern would stand out a little more with a single color, but I really wanted to try out the Lion Brand Wool I had on hand. And so far, I love it! It's 100% wool, so it is feltable. And it's not scratchy and itchy. It's worsted weight, and doesn't have nobbly bits like some wool yarns. For projects where you don't want irregularities it would be perfect. Plus, it comes in some really pretty colors!

My big project for today will be to get some work done in my craft room. It's a disaster with stuff all out of place. So, I'm going to put on some Christmas music, roll the baby's playpen in there and get some real work done back there today!


Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Blogging Block

With all the preparations for Thanksgiving, the baby having a cold, house training a puppy, getting teenagers done with school stuff before holiday break....I haven't had any time to do much knitting, crocheting or anything in the category of "fun''.

Total Blogger's Block.....I dunno what to blog about since I don't have any cool, crafty photos to show. And since it's been chilly out, all the spiders are dead, dead, deadsky....so no spider photos to fill in the gaps. lol.

So....today, my husband has the day off, and that means I will be getting some crafting time today. Tomorrow I will have some pictures and something at least remotely interesting to talk about.

For today.....just some neat quizzes I saw on other people's blogs. Boredom blogging really sucks. :)

What type of princess are you?

The Traditional Princess
You are generous, graceful, and practical with both
feet planted firmly on the ground. You tend to
be a little on the old-fashioned side. You
value home, hearth, and family life and love to
be of service to others.
Role Models: Snow White, Maid Marian
You are most likely to: Discover a hidden talent
for spinning straw into gold.

What Kind of Princess are You? - Beautiful Artwork (Original Music is BACK!!!)

Which "Nightmare Before Christmas'' Character are you?


'The Nightmare Before Christmas' What's your character?


Monday, November 21, 2005


If you like receiving postcards, you need to check out www.postcrossing.com

Postcrossing is a postcard site that has thousands of members from all over the world. You send out postcards and receive from others around the world. Plus, the site makes sure that everyone sends and receives -- so you won't have to worry about sending out cards and never receiving any. I really enjoy it!!

I've received postcards from Sweden, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Brazil, Portugal, and 2 from the Netherlands.

Here's a photo of some of them:

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Thanks to Karla for telling me about Postcrossing. It's really neat to see all the different cards and stamps!! She also has some neat postcard photos on her blog! Go check it out!!

Paula, who sent me a postcard from Portugal, is a knitter and crafter!!! She sent me her blog URL. http://www.gatodependente.blogspot.com The site is in Portuguese, but take time to go look at her doll pictures! They are adorable!! She's very talented!! :) Take time to leave her a comment....I'm sure she'd love to hear from you!

On the homefront, we're trying to iron out Thanksgiving plans still. This year we're having a quiet dinner with just our kids and some friends who are honorary family members on Thursday, and on Saturday we're having another dinner with very close friends from our church. As the teenagers (we have 3, ages 19, 16 and 15) get older, I find that planning holiday meals gets more complicated. But in the end, we have a great day of family time, so the extra work is worth it. This year, my son is bringing his girlfriend.....that's a first. Gee, it seems like yesterday that I was taking him to his first day of school. And now, he's in high school and bringing his girlfriend over for holiday meals. Kinda cool, actually! I'm glad he's growing up. But, it does seem strange. I don't feel old enough to have a son who is a sophomore in high school. I guess that must be because I have one son in high school....and the other son is still drinking from a sippy cup and wearing diapers. :)

Well, I have some housework to get done, and then I'm going to get in some good knitting time this afternoon. I've earned some relaxation!! :)


Saturday, November 19, 2005

A Weekend Away!

Last weekend, my husband and I, along with my 15-year old son and Baby Josh, took a trip back to our old stomping ground in High Point, NC to see old friends. We went to a gaming convention. Yep....a convention where people just play games for an entire weekend. Role-playing games, board games, computer games.....any sort of game. And yes, I do realize this makes us uber nerds......but hey, we like being nerdy. lol.

We had a great time! Hubby and I took turns keeping track of the baby, played quite a few fun board games, and I managed to get a few rows done on the back piece for the cabled vest I'm knitting.

Here's what's done so far on the back of the vest:

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The needles aren't long enough for me to spread it out so you can see the pattern, but it's coming along nicely so far. I haven't gotten any knitting time this week hardly at all -- pout, pout -- but I plan to get some knitting time in this evening. I didn't start the decreases for the right and left side yet.....I want to start that tonight.

Here's some pictures of our weekend fun:

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Here are a few of our friends playing a game called Shadows Over Camelot by Days of Wonder Games. It's a great game! If you like King Arthur and enjoy cooperative board games (several players working toward quests, with a possible traitor among you), then you'd love this game!! We had a great time! We bought this game and a couple others, including Arkham Horror, which is also a great game. If you like H.P. Lovecraft....Arkham Horror is a great game that can be played with 1 to 8 players. :)

Here's a picture of the baby chilling during the game convention:

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We had a really good time!!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Great Mail Day!!

Yesterday I received my Crochetville autumn yarn swap boxie from Angela (fruggs). I just love the yarn she sent!!

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There is a scarf pattern I've been wanting to try that uses different colored blocks with pretty cabling.....I think I'll use the 50g balls she sent for that project. The Homespun will make a couple pretty scarves or I'll combine it with a coordinating color and make a shawl. :)


I also received a great dishcloth swap puffy from Kris (from dishclothsrusplus).

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Lookie what she sent me!! I got two butterfly dishcloths, two mug rug coasters, a little butterfly calendar, 3 packets of hot cocoa, penguin socks, a pencil and some really yummy chocolate mint sugar-free candies!



Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Cables, Cables, Cables

I made some great progress on the knitted cable vest I'm working on. I have the left and right front pieces completed up to the first decrease rows for the armhole and neck. Whew. So far, so good.

I have definitely improved my tinking skills. lol. :)

Here's what I have done so far:

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I wanted to get both front pieces done so I could decrease them at the same time, to make sure I do them both the same way. This is the first time I've had to decrease in pattern like this....so I'm sure my tinking skills will be honed even more before I'm all done. This is the first sweater I've knitted....so I'm just glad to have gotten it this far and have it on gauge without any major huge mistakes.

I have knitting class tonight, but after working to get the right front done, I think I'm going to work on dishcloths in class tonight. I get tired of working on the same thing after awhile. I need a break, or I'll start dreaming of knitting right twists and front cables in my sleep. :)

I'll start on decreases tomorrow if I have time. I'm going to try to have the vest done by Thanksgiving for my MIL, but I'm not going to burn myself out on it by trying to go too fast. She'll definitely have it by Christmas, if not by Turkey Day.


Sunday, November 06, 2005

Last Rose

My red rose bush decided to produce one more bloom this year.....in November no less!! I think it is trying to thank me for the new mulch and the nice weeding job we did a few days ago. :)
I posted a picture of the bud a couple days ago....the rose was finally fully open today. Very pretty!!

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Knitting-wise, I'm still working on the right front side of the cabled vest. I want to get it to the decrease stage, so that I can decrease the left front and the right front at the same time. I've got about 10 inches done on the right side....so about half-way there. It's going much faster since I've gotten used to the pattern stitches.


Saturday, November 05, 2005

Stash Enhancement

Made a visit to the LYS, and some nice yarn and a few extra goodies hopped in a bag to come home with me. :)

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The Lion Brand Wool Prints is in the color Autumn Sunset. I saw it in the LB catalog I got in the mail a couple days ago and thought it was really pretty. So when I saw 3 skeins of it at Goodwin's, I bought it. I want to try the reverse cable scarf pattern from my Scarf Style pattern book.

The skeins of Soft as Silk are a really pretty apricot color. I want to make a cable and bobble scarf (also from Scarf Style)....hopefully 3 skeins are enough yardage. I haven't checked the pattern yet. If I can't make the bobble scarf with it, I'm sure I can find another pattern that will work with 3 skeins. :)

I bought the Modea Dea Jai Alai in Raffia. It's a pretty mix of autumn shades of rust, tan, sage green, and grey. Definitely will make a great scarf to go with my dark green sweater. I have visions of a long skinny scarf, or maybe a wider keyhole scarf. Not sure yet.

I also finally remembered to get a needle sizer, a long set of #10 needles for the sweater I'm working on, and a cute sheep tape measure. And a small size stitch holder. Now I have large, medium and small. Before I had one small and one huge one. I'm using the small one to hold four stitches for the frontband on the cabled vest I'm knitting. So when I started the right front, I had to put those 4 stitches on the huge one. Very annoying! Knit one, push stitch holder out of the way, purl 2, push stitch holder out of the way....grrrrr! So I was very glad to bring home a much smaller version that isn't in my way all the time.

Funny thing is.....the only thing I went into the LYS to get was the little stitch holder. And I came out with a bag of yarn and several other goodies. I can't ever get out of the yarn shop with just what I went in for. It's too tempting a place!!!

My name is Juli. And I'm a yarnaholic. :)

I received some beautiful stitch markers in the mail from Donna at Crochetville!! Lookie Lookie!

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I just love the little box she sent them in!! I've got the other markers I received from this exchange in a little envelope because I was afraid I'd lose them. I'm going to let them all live in the cute little black box. Then when I need markers, I know just where they are!!

The stitch marker exchange was a blast!!! I had fun making my first set of stitch markers, and seeing everyone else's handiwork was really cool!!

Update on Millie the Puppy. She's doing great -- she's eating dry puppy food just fine and is very energetic. She loves to play with our black cat, Grover. Grover is still a kitten and our two grown cats don't like to play with him. Grover doesn't seem to realize Millie is a puppy....the cat is really enjoying playing with the little dog.

I woke up at 4 a.m. this morning (time change still messing with me) and took the puppy out to piddle. She sacked out on the sofa next to me. It's a rough life, isn't it! :)

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Friday, November 04, 2005

Unexpected Surprise

My husband called me from work yesterday morning, and the first words out of his mouth were "I can't believe I'm going to ask this.....'' I was all ready for something serious and awful....but then he said:

"I'm out working on some phone lines, and there's a little puppy out here down in a culvert. She's awfully cold. Can I bring her home? Do you want her?''

Of course I told him to bring her home. By the time he pulled up in the driveway, I had a blanket ready and had called the vet to make an appointment for her.

Here's the little cutie pie:

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My husband named her Millie. I took her right out to the vet to be checked and for puppy shots. She's fine, despite having a very nasty case of worms. Ewwwwww! She's doing great on house-training, and the baby just adores her.

Here's their first meeting:

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She's a cute, friendly little thing, but overly jumpy or too exciteable. We'll have her spoiled in no time. And....shame on the people who dumped a little puppy out in the middle of nowhere!! Unwanted animals can be taken to the shelter for free -- and there they can be adopted into a family that will take care of them. WHY would anyone need to dump a dog -- especially a helpless 6-8 week old puppy -- out where it has no chance of survival??? GRRRRRRR. And bless everyone who has pets and is responsible and loving to them. Pets aren't toys, they are living creatures and deserve to be treated well and respected. Thanks to my husband, Millie slept underneath warm covers last night and has plenty of dog food and attention now, instead of freezing and starving in a ditch. Makes me mad just thinking about it!! Ok....I'm off my soap box now.

There are lots of fall flowers blooming in our yard. :)

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And believe it or not, my red rose bush is trying to bloom one last time.

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Since it has frosted, I'm not sure if the bloom will actually get a chance to open fully, but it's pretty even as a bud. :)

And since I haven't posted a spider picture in awhile......

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Mr. Long Legs is still braving the cold, while most of the other spiders are gone already. We have one garden spider still living on our front porch. The rest I'm sure died when it frosted.

Needless to say with a new puppy, I didn't get much done knitting wise yesterday. Hopefully, I get some stitchin' time today!! :)


Wednesday, November 02, 2005

So far so good!

Got some good knitting time in yesterday! I got the left front of the cabled vest I'm working on to the point where decreases for the neck and armhole will start. Here's what I have done so far:

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So it's coming along. I'm planning to go to the LYS today to get another set of short #10 bamboo needles so I can start the right front and be working on it at the same time. And I'm going to get a set of long #10's for the back of the sweater. I have long metal needles in size #10, but I like the bamboo better for doing cables. The bamboo needles have a little bit of give to them, whereas the metal ones don't. Plus the metal needles are so slick.....sometimes I have stitches just zing right off the end. lol. I don't like having to fish for stitches with a crochet hook. :)

I found a neat quiz on Karla's blog......what kind of flower are you??

You Are A Lily

You are a nurturer and all around natural therapist.
People see you as their rock. And they are able to depend on you.
You are a soothing influence. You can make people feel better with a few words.
Your caring has more of an impact than even you realize.
What Flower Are You?

And I was tagged by Karla.......what's on my desktop?
Wallace and Gromit!! :) I haven't seen their new movie Curse of the Wererabbit yet, but I am definitely a fan. :) Especially "A Close Shave'' -- Shaun the Sheep is just too cute!
I tag Kelly at The Crafty Cat. :)

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

It's decrease time!

Still working on the cabled sweater vest......it's time to start decreases for the neck and armhole. Eeek! This first sweater project is a bit intimidating, but I'm remaining calm since I know that once I've done it once, it won't be so hard the 2nd time. I still have a couple rows to knit before it's time to start decreases, and I have a very knowledgeable advanced knitter in the wings helping me out....so I'll be ready when that puppy is ready to start shaping up.

I will take a new picture when I hit that magic 17". The cables are much easier for me now since I've done the pattern repeat about 16 times now. So far, so good!

I did have to tink out a few rows a couple days ago. I was knitting along while watching television and I guess the show was more exciting than I thought. I noticed a boo-boo about 10 rows down (unfortunately) -- a front twist where it should have been a back twist. So it was remove the needle and rip back time. ARGH! Once I got the needle back in, it took me a bit to realize what row I was on, but I finally figured it out and got started again.

This project is definitely an adventure for me.....I'm certainly learning a lot as I go along! :)

Took a cute quiz about what kind of knitter I am....I think I got the right result.


Knitting Adventurer
You appear to be a Knitting Adventurer.You are through those knitting growing pains and
feeling more adventurous. You can follow a
standard pattern if it's not too complicated
and know where to go to get help. Maybe you've
started to experiment with different fibers and
you might be eyeing a book with a cool
technique you've never tried. Perhaps you
prefer to stick to other people's patterns but
you are trying to challenge yourself more.
Regardless of your preference, you are
continually trying to grow as a knitter, and as
well you should since your non-knitting friends
are probably dropping some serious hints, these

What Kind of Knitter Are You?
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