Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Mixing Cement

Is mixing cement a craft?? It is when my daughter gets a gift for Christmas! Yes, we got a box from the US last week with Christmas gifts for the kids. Lots of kits. Great kits. Beads and jewelry and a mosaic tile kit for Avery. Koleman got a Physics kit that really challenges his building and thinking skills. So I was able to keep her from mixing things up that day, but that didn't last long.

Friday, we mixed and poured. Then add coloured glass into well thought out patterns. Then she pulled them out and did another one. To may choices for one slab of concrete.

She finally settled on the blue sky, little girl, flower and dog. I think she's done well for her first go at laying tile. The next morning the stone has to be wash and brushed lightly with a toothbrush. Avery chose her dad's! Thought we'd better choose another retired brush. Two days after that, it is ready to be removed from the mould and place in your garden or on your stairs, whichever you prefer.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Time to Move Forward

Well the funk is leaving the building. I'm just tired of it, so I'm forcing myself out of retirement. The coat if finished. The two skirts have been repaired. I've been preparing for an all day beginners Felt workshop that was yesterday and I'm working on Felt Jewelry for our February Felters Guild monthly drop in. So here's the coat.

I've had the fabric for years. It's cotton with a small stripe woven into it. The collar fabric is an embroidered cotton velveteen. Button were purchased at a ribbon store in Dublin that is now out of business. I am pleased with the outcome of the coat and I'm really glad it's done.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

In a Funk

I'm sure most of you know what I'm talking about. Not that I don't have a list of things I'd love to do or make, I just can't get motivated to do anything. It seemed to happen just after the Christmas knitting was done. 10 days in Portugal, with a suitcase full of wool, needles and patterns and all I came away with was a hat. Cute! Yes! But a, count them, one hat. Since then, I've started the aqua yarn several times. Finished the back and am now reknitting the back on smaller needles.
I've seen several felted bags that I love, but how many bags does one girl and her family need? I still need to finish a few sewing projects and start a few more, but again...

1. A Coat to hem since last spring.
2. Several skirts and trousers to get started on.
3. Felt Jewelry to make for next months Felters Guild.
4. Fleeces to card and spin before the moths get to them.
5. Etsy shop to load pictures and descriptions onto.

So, I'm in a funk that I hope doesn't last long. I'll get to a point of just tossing it all. Until then.... Blogging may be slim.

Happy Trails

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Baking Day

Yesterday was a special birthday day in our family. We also have some special allergies to deal with so, we don't have wheat, eggs, peanuts, beef or celery in our cakes. Makes for an interesting texture, but we do our best. Lucky for us, it's both children with similar aliments.

This is the Chocolate Girl. Anything and everything chocolate is her thing. Best part of the process is the bowl. Not sure how we managed to get the nose, but it was well worth it. We found a great mix in the US for Gluten Free Chocolate cake. It's really more like a brownie. Not much lift and fairly dense. You couldn't use them as paving stones, but close. I found that adding a bit more baking powder helps a lot. Depending on the topping or filling, it can be very good. Relatively speaking.

So here it is. The Gluten Free Raspberry and Creme Tort. I also got pumpkin pie, because it was after all my birthday!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Sublime Knitting

Nearly done with the Knitting projects from the Sublime wool, cashmere, silk I got in Birmingham in September. I'm sticking to the rule of finishing off as much yarn as possible too. I'm a little afraid of the reports coming in on this wool from friends that have knit with it. It does split easily.

I knit the hat in Portugal and had a ball and a half left. So instead of putting it in the storage box, I though I'd knit a scarf. This is the knit 2 together, yarn over pattern that I did the coil yarn from. I got it off of Isobel's blog.

The Sunflower Tam came from Knitting Nature, which I really like. The fit is interesting. Not a beret at all. Longish from the rib up and very flat on top. Kind of a big pillbox hat. I had to move it around until I liked the placement on my head.

Quite a few patterns to use on my stash. I think the Aqua Cheviot is next on the list. I've even found the pattern.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

You Know It's a Good Night When...

1. The article promised for January Totally Dublin is out. Turned out pretty well and any advertising for knitting is good. Had someone new last night from the article. The article talked about the Rathmines group and the new interest in knitting in Ireland, plus they always put in something about celebrities knitting. That kinda bugs me. Our group and many others I know have been knitting a lot longer than anyone famous and that's not the reason I knit. I knit because I have a lot of yarn!!

2. Great Night of Knitting. We had a great group of knitters last night. Funny stories from the holidays and lots of food and coffee. Oh yeah, Knitting, lots of knitting. Sara came along as she was in the area. Yeah!!

3. Not lashing rain as forecasted. That's a good one. Always a good one.

4. Nice walk to the car with a friend. No rain.

5. Got to the car, got in, noticed... Huh, I remember having a back window when I left. Again, Not Raining!! Kinda funny actually. Big chunks kept falling off into the boot (trunk) with every bump that I hit. Pretty sure I don't want a convertible. To windy!

Got home and started calling all the 24 hour emergency replacement places. Again, huh??? No one seems to be answering the phone. Glad it wasn't a real emergency. Anyway, someone will come this morning. Again, no rain at the moment.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Knitting around Portimao

Small and portable. That was the theme of the Holiday. Socks, hats, well that was about it. I finished the Cable socks, which I love and knitted the Sunflower Tam from Knitting Nature. I'll post about that after I finish the scarf.

Here's a bit of knitting by the seaside on Christmas Day I think.

Cheryl and I are hard at it in the hotel room while the children are glued to the TV.

Here we are by the pool. It's a rough life with the pool to yourself. We did have to chip the ice off the top on the first day before the children got in. They came out quickly and quite purple around the gills.

It's a great holiday when the children are occupied and the adults are able to enjoy themselves too. Aaahhh!!!

Sunday, January 07, 2007

I Can Weave

While we were in Portugal. Avery and I signed up for a basket making class. I wasn't sure how the 7 year old would do, but she's pretty crafty. Little did I know how she would take to it. With very little assistance. She observed and followed. Periodically she would need me to hold onto something because her hands weren't big enough. I was very impressed.

I had forgotten that I really enjoy basket making. My Mother use to do it years ago and my friend Patti also used to do basket making, so I do have a little experience, but it's been years. I also forgot how much your fingers hurt from pinching and pushing the reed around, but the results in a few short hours are great.

So, I discovered that I can weave, although I am not a weaver. I like making baskets, but I will not become a basket maker. My daughter on the other hand may!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

New Years Resolution

Knit From Your Stash 2007!

I don't make New Years Resolutions, because I break them. I will start something I think is important, when I think it is important and usually loose interest and stop. I saw this idea on someones blog and thought I'd give it a try. Who knows, it might actually work for me. I will give it my best, although I know that when we go to the US this summer I will crumble at the Fibre Shows.

Knit-Your-Stash-a-Thon will start January 1, 2007 and run through September 30, 2007 -- a period of nine months.
2. I will not buy any yarn during that period, with the following exceptions:
2.a. Sock yarn does not count.
2.b. If someone asks for a specific knitted gift that I really and truly do not have the yarn for, we may buy yarn to knit that gift.
2.c. If we are knitting something and run out of yarn, I may purchase enough to complete the project.
2.d. I get one "Get Out of Jail Free" card -- I am allowed to fall off the wagon one time.
3. I am allowed to receive gifts of yarn.
4. Spinning fiber of any sort is exempt.
Anyone else who would like to join us in this is welcome to do so! Feel free to link page or to post the guidelines on your own blog. You may also alter the guidelines to suit your own situation.