TGIF | 6.7.19

TGIF | 6.7.19

Spring being a tough act to follow, God created June. – Al Bernstein

June days are simply magical. The light gently wakes me, inviting me to greet the new day. The birds fill the air with their melodies and the low buzzing of the bees join to make the loveliest of harmonies. The lavender is full of velvety purple wands that dance in the breeze. The morning in the garden is my favorite time of the day. And, this morning I was greeted by the first Stella d’Oro daylily – a bittersweet sight because it means the deer will soon be here to snack on the blooms. But that first bloom was a glorious to see!

Triumphing!

Yesterday afternoon I finished the last sleeve of my Marsa Alam and this morning it is enjoying a Spa Treatment and will soon be laying out to dry. Pearl buttons will be sewn on this weekend (thank you all for your input!) Pre-blocking this is perhaps the best fitting sweater I have ever knit! The sleeve/shoulder fit is incredible – and can I just gush about Holst Coast yarn a minute? It might be my favorite yarn ever! The stitches are beautifully even, the ribbing looks nice, the hand of the sweater is incredibly inviting, and it is next-to-skin-soft. And, lets talk about value – I purchased a 500 g/3800 yd cone for about $24. Shipping from Denmark is not bad, and it only added about $10 to the cost of the yarn – and you get the most wonderful updates from Holst and PostNord. (Also, PostNord got the yarn to the USA in less than 24 hours, but it took the USPS more than a week to deliver it to my door…) My Marsa Alam used 324g of yarn – so yes, I have more than enough left-over yarn to use to make a Screen Door, which I cast on last night and flew through 8 repeats of the easy to memorize pattern! Knitting wins are such a good feeling!

Getting Ready!

I have a stack of fabrics that have been patiently waiting for me to begin cutting and assembling them into this quilt. Why that quilt? Genevieve is turning 4 next month and my plan is to make that for her birthday! With my new sewing set up, I think that I can manage to do the machine quilting myself. And while I love the overall stippling effect on the linked quilt, I think that will be a bit beyond my very-beginner abilities. However, I think that concentric circles might be lovely… sort of like the stitching I did for this piece:

Inspired by…

Something I saw on Pinterest last night, which made me go to see the original post on IG. Oh.my.gosh. I have the tamrack pattern – I picked it up in Grainline’s pattern sale earlier this year but had not been inspired to make one, thinking it would be a good fall project. And then I saw the magic that cjoy2 did with her tamrack (also her artwork…) WOW!! It is not bulky, I love the length, and it is incredibly creative – yet simple! She hand-stitched around the butterflies in the most wonderful way! And, her binding around the edges… it is brilliant!

Flattened!

I absolutely LOVE the MBR’s Rose Pants. They are wonderfully easy to make and to wear. I want to make a pair from a light denim – but denim and pleats or gathers seemed, well – bulky in an area I don’t need any extra bulk! So I had been wondering how hard it would be to remove the pleats/gathers from the front… well, wonder no more thanks to this post, which led me to this post. I have enough fabric to make a muslin trial run pair of shorts with a flattened front! Wish me luck!

And, that is all I have to share with you all for this first Friday in June! I hope you have a wonderful weekend and I will see you back here on Monday!

May: Over and Out

May: Over and Out

May has felt unbelievably long to me – at times it has felt like it has been on pause with the days running into one another. While I know and am trying to remind myself that there have been plenty of very good May days they seem to have been drowned out by the very challenging days of unexpected expenses, arguments, and upsets.

As this month closes, it feels like it has been ages since I was in Michigan – so, I am sending May out the door with a pictorial reminder of just how wonderfully it started:


Have a great weekend and I will see you back here on Monday!

P.S. A dear reader shared the most wonderful link with me this week which is perfectly timed to help us start PRIDE month. I did not know that 73% of the LGBTQ community have been harassed online due to their sexual orientation/gender identity. If you want to share this link with friends, please feel free to do so! No one should feel at risk or harassed ever.

TGIF – A Holiday Weekend Edition!

TGIF – A Holiday Weekend Edition!

The weather forecast seems to be attempting to put the kibosh on a glorious welcome to summer:

But I am not going to let the weather stop me from having a good weekend!

In the plus column – I did indeed get my Charity Shawl completed and blocked! Which means I can ease back into my regularly scheduled knitting – which includes my Marsa Alam and a pair of toe-up socks! I have never knit a pair of socks toe-up so this is an entirely new experience for me. I am not sure how I feel about the process compared to my usual sock knitting method, but I will have a better idea once I have gotten to the heel. I am also a bit concerned about the cast off, but hopefully my typical stretchy bind-off will not fail me!

Thinking about:

Sewing! I finished my Rose muslin yesterday. I had made some alterations to the pattern – I shortened the length and I knew I would need to shorten the rise but I was unsure exactly how much to shorten it. And even though I did not quite shorten it enough, it is still a wearable muslin! I used some fabric I got at IKEA a couple of years ago. My original plan was to sew a cushion for the window seat at the top of our stairs, but that never happened and so I thought it would work well for a muslin and it did! The pattern directions are well written and very clear. I tried the pleat option and it was surprisingly easy!  I think the gathered front looks nice as well so I will get some fabric this weekend to make another pair. I think these would work with fun prints, linen, and even a lightweight denim! AND!! They are super comfortable and I predict these will be the Pants of the Summer!

Gearing up for:

The start of Summer Book Bingo! That’s right – any book finishes beginning tomorrow can count for a square! I am ON the “Made into a TV series” square with the first book of Elizabeth George’s Inspector Lynley series – A Great Deliverance. I have high hopes for this book as the reviews on Goodreads are stellar! I started it Wednesday night and should easily have it finished this weekend! It is not to late for you to join in as well! Book Bingo makes summer so much more fun!

Inspired by:

PatternScout! I love this idea of remaking things and giving them a new life. Also, I really love her pattern suggestions – especially the Burda Knot Front Blouse! And, I truly love her “Monologue” especially this: “This hobby has given me so much confidence…creatively and about my body.” YES, so much yes!!

Fun, fun, fun:

I am going to harvest some rhubarb today and have plans to make a batch of Rhubarb-Thyme Syrup. This will come in handy as an addition to some beginning-of-summer-inspired cocktails this weekend – I am thinking about something new with gin. Stay tuned – I will share the recipe next week!

That’s all I have for this week – have an amazing Memorial Day Weekend and I will see you all back here next week!

TGIF | 4.12.19

TGIF | 4.12.19

It was a full week and next week will be more of the same so today I am just taking a deep breath and planning on spending some time today knitting on my Marsa Alam, because I don’t think there will be many knitting moments this weekend – the yard is fairly screaming for some attention and the Yard Work Fairies have yet to show up, darn it all!

But all that aside, it was such a good week!

Thinking about –

Gardening… it is that time of the year! I stumbled across this article about a garden that is still thriving…six decades after the death of the gardener! This makes me think about my yard and garden beds in different ways – ways that are more long term and lasting. I am also reminded of our visit last year to Fallingwater and all the rhododendrons that were planted all over the grounds – the forethought of this truly impacts the beauty of the grounds today. Gardening with purpose is something I always want to do, but I don’t always achieve that. These are good reminders as we begin a new season.

Grateful for –

My library. Truly. It is a place beyond measure. A place to gather with friends, a place for stirring conversation, a place with unending books ready to take you away…and this morning I saw this! This sparks all kinds of joy inside me! I am adding “nurturer of crafting” to the list of things my library does!

Inspired by –

Courtney, as always – and the timeliness of her messages. How does she know? Her words of wisdom about how to deal with being busy – even too busy – are just what I needed this week. I have been thinking about the things I spend my time on – and have been paring some things back. At first these things were hard to “give up” – but after a couple of days I found I did not miss the constant scrolling I was doing on IG – I check it, but only at the end of the day. Am I missing things? Yes, I am quite certain I am. But if you don’t know you are missing something, are you really missing it? I am also not spending hours each day “surfing the net” with much the same results – at first, it was so hard to get up and walk away from my pc! But like the IG phenomenon, after a few days it was not hard to get up at all. In fact, each day it is easier and some mornings I have had to make myself go and sit at the pc! What am I doing with all this extra time? Well, for one thing – my meditation time has really improved since cutting back on my screen time! And that is absolutely inspiring!

Fun –

This weekend Steve and I are heading into the “wilds” of our yard to tame the overgrown bushes. Is this going to be fun – oh, hell no! But!! I am going into it with the following mindset – I am going to be quiet no matter how much Steve yells (and he will be yelling, oh my! lol) I am going to be patient no matter how much I want to be doing something else – my mantra will be, “this too shall pass”, and I am going to be cheerful even when I don’t want to be (because it is hard to yell at a cheerful person right?) Wish me luck!!

And, there you have it! I wish you all a wonderful weekend – full of every little thing you want! See you all back here next week!

TGIF | 2.22.19

TGIF | 2.22.19

Despite a topsy turvy week that was very out of kilter on any kind of schedule yes, it’s finally Friday! I am reminding myself of that because it does not feel very Friday-like to me…but hopefully I am over that feeling by the time Happy Hour™ starts! And if not an icy beverage and some fun eats will certainly help me get into that Friday Mood, right?!

Totally over – winter! I mean really. This week was my tipping point. It was a week of almost all the weather seasons happening in.the.same.week. It is impossible to know how to dress and I need hip-waders to walk in the swamp that is my back yard! I just am really ready for spring and all the spring things! I am itching to get outside and not be hampered by the bitter weather!

Grateful for – The Amazon email suggesting I watch Agatha Christie’s ABC Murders! The casting is spectacular with John Malkovich as Hercule Poirot and the trio of stories are brilliantly done and I can thank the ABC Murders for all the knitting company! Yes – I have just 3 colors to go to completion!

Inspired by – Katrina Rodabaugh! Yes, I finally check out Mending Matters from the library. I started reading it last night and oh my. The ideas are mind-blowing and brilliantly executed. I also had a lovely chat with the librarian who checked me out – she had just finished the book and her enthusiasm for hand sewing encouraged me to not knit last night and instead dig into the book! I was profoundly struck by her motto: Just begin. How true that is for everything – stop worrying that your technique is not perfect or that your skills are lacking, “Begin this journey with whatever skills you have today and trust…You’ll improve techniques as you practice.” This is definitely a book I will be adding to my library!

Fun, fun, funPittsburgh Indie Knit & Spin is Saturday. And though I don’t need any yarn, but I do want to knit this sweater and I do not have enough of any yarn to do so. Right now, the forecast is just calling for a rainy day and if that does not change this is on the list for the weekend!

That is all I have for this week; the knitting is calling! Have a wonderful weekend and I will see you back here next week!

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