FO & Pattern release: Cameron

The last of the Christmas mitts is done!

I know, it’s not very exciting compared to the other ones. But this pair is for Paisley’s boyfriend, Cameron.

He’s been around for a couple of years now. I’ve only met him once, but by all accounts, he’s a very nice young man. But I don’t know him very well so I decided to play it safe, and simple.

The yarn is some leftover brown Barn Cat I had kicking around (colour is Milk Chocolate). Last year I made him a brown, ribbed hat, so this pair will go nicely with that.

And, as the title suggests… it’s my pattern. I couldn’t find anything that was tickling my fancy, so I decided to just write my own.

It’s a VERY simple mitt pattern with a major plus – these mitts will fit pretty much any size hand. That’s my tiny little hand in the picture, but Dave has giant man hands and they fit him just as well. It’s all in the magic of ribbing.

So the pattern is available now (it’s free!).

Enjoy and have a wonderful Monday!

Leading the way

I’m sewing every spare minute I can. It’s not enough in my opinion, but I hope to get more time once winter really sets in and there’s not as much to do around the house.

Still, with what little sewing I have been accomplishing, I’ve managed to sew up all the pieces I had for Leader/Ender blocks. It was time to lay them out and see how far they would get me.

I had a fair bit of help with that laying out.

He was so helpful, I wasn’t able to get one picture of them without his noble fluff-butt.

Still, I have 39 blocks in total so far (a couple are missing from this photo. But since I’d like this to be a decent sized lap-quilt, I need quite a few more.. at least 60 or more added to this lot.

So I’m back to snowballing scraps. This one is going to take a while.

October in bloom

We’re closing in on the end of October, but there’s still lots of colour around here. And I’m not talking about fall colour….

The mums I brought from the townhouse hit their peak last week (when I took these pics). They are just starting to fade, so I expect that they will stay pretty colourful until the end of the month.

The neighbour’s Morning Glories are still peeking over the fence and still providing a few blooms here and there.

There are still a few strawberries, though they are small and probably won’t ripen before the frost. The Tickseed still throws up a bloom here and there.

Each of the new Butterfly Bushes has put up a small, but beautiful bloom stem. All three have really grown since I put them in so I expect good things next year.

And last… the lawn is just full of wild violets.. they don’t really get a chance to bloom because of the lawn mower….

But this little guy managed to stay low enough to evade the mower blades. It makes me wish I didn’t have to keep th grass short.. I’d love to see more of these little guys! (even though if left unchecked, they totally take over!)

Anything still blooming in your yard?

Pooping with friends

With that other baby top done, I can get back to working on my Christmas quilts. First up is my brothers outhouse quilt. The centre is done, but I needed to get working on the next border.

That called for MORE friendship stars! 20 of the to be exact. But because they are all the same, they were perfect for chain piecing.

I started by turning my stack of squares into HSTs using the eight-at-a-time method. The sewing goes pretty quick, it’s the trimming of said HSTs that really slows things down.

Especially when you have 160 HSTs to trim! My special handy dandy ruler helps, but it’s still a slog.

After what seemed like an eternity, they were trimmed, ironed open, and laid out into the block. Chain assembly could finally begin!

Those are some fun little friendship stars, if I do say so myself! And now I am 20 steps closer to having this top complete!

FO: Cloudburst

Another day… another gift knocked off the Christmas list.

These are for my Sister-in-Law, the girl’s mother, Jenn. The pattern is Cloudburst (not mine), another freebie that was a very fun knit.

I used some leftover Alley Cat (colourway is Peony) It’s a nice semi-solid that really lets the lace shine on these.

And before you get too excited… no, I didn’t finish these in just two days. I schedule my blog posts ahead of time. Paisley’s Elphaba mitts from Monday were actually finished on October 12. This pair was cast on the same day, and finished on the 18th.

Now I’ve got just one more pair of fingerless mitts to make for the holidays, and I can move on to other knits!

Sewing with friends

I really should be working on my Christmas quilts… but Mom needs me…

You see, she has a friend who has commissioned a few baby quilts from her. And this friend is in need of another one come November. But she doesn’t know the sex of the baby. And she doesn’t really know the theme/design she wants. So she asked if Mom could make up a couple for a boy, and a couple for a girl, and then when the baby is born… she can decide which one she wants.

Making multiple baby quilts isn’t really an issue, especially when you can make whatever you want design-wise. Which ever ones she doesn’t want will just end up in our shop. It’s just the timing… Mom not only has her own list of Christmas projects to get through, she also works for the post office. Things are already starting to get busy, and her working days are getting longer. That means less time to sew.

So time for me to lend a helping hand. We’ve already got a few “boy” quilts on hand. But not a lot in the girl department.

So I went through my stash and came up with a layer cake called Tiny Tots

It’s a mix of pink, grey and blue, and I’d always intended on splitting it up into a couple quilts. So, I pulled the pink fabrics from it, as well as some pale yellow from my stash and set to work. Friendship stars are quick and easy, and if you make them big enough, you don’t need that many.

Four… eight… twelve…. they stacked up quickly.

Add some sashing and cornerstones and you’ve got yourself a baby quilt top!

I even have just enough of the grey flannel giraffes leftover from the back of another quilt to do this one.

With any luck, I can get down to Mom’s and quilt it before the end of the month.

FO: Elphaba

First – thanks for the Anniversary wishes. We didn’t get up to too much trouble – Saturday, we laid the floor in the living room (yay!!!) so come our actual anniversary, neither of us was in any shape to do anything wild. We went to Home Depot, Walmart, and got lunch at Dairy Queen – that was more than enough excitement for the day!

Now, onto knitting…

With Rowan’s Christmas mitts off the needles, it was time to start a pair for her sister. Since Rowan got Glinda, it seem only appropriate that I make Paisley a pair of Elphaba.

As with Rowan’s I made Paisley’s in Knit Picks Felici. The colour is Punch Bug – a yarn I ordered with Paisley in mind. The colours are slightly more muted than the picture shows.

Like Glinda, Elphaba knits up pretty darn quick, making it great for gift knitting . I had the first one done in a couple of long evenings, and the second one didn’t take much longer.

Because of the tight chevron pattern, it has more stitches than Glinda, and it took almost one whole ball to make the pair. But still – that leaves me with a whole ball to make myself some anklets… sometime after Christmas, of course!

Nineteen

Today, Dave and I mark 19 years together on this journey of life…

After such a long time, you think you might know everything about your partner. But I think one of the strengths of our relationship is that we are still able to surprise each other now and then.

For example:

A little while back, we had to patch a little bit of concrete. It’s normally the kind of thing Dave would do by himself, but as I’ve mentioned before, if the job requires being on your knees, I tend to get drafted in. So he mixed and dumped, and I knelt and got everything spread out nice and even.

When we were finished, I told him we had to sign it. He said “No. It’s just a patch. You’re not going to sign it. You’re not going to put the cat’s paws in it… you’re just going to leave it alone and let it set!”

And you’d think… after those 19 years… he’d know by now that I don’t take orders well. Suggestions I may listen to, but never orders…

I think he’s just lucky I didn’t go grab a cat…

Everything toads

I haven’t seen Burton’s toad since the day I took those pictures… but there’s no shortage of toads around here!

This big whomper of a guy greeted Dave and I when we got home one rainy night last week.

Dave laughed at me, because I immediately took my phone out to take pictures.

But isn’t he a beauty? He’s the biggest one I’ve seen so far. And with all the crickets we have, I understand why he’s so well-fed.

But it’s not just warty toads we have. We also have beautiful toads…

Remember my Toad Lilies?

I brought them with me from the townhouse. According to the place I bought them from, they prefer mostly shade. At the townhouse, I had them in the front garden. I usually got five or six blooms every year.

When we moved here, I was a little worried about them. The only place I had to put them (by the steps inside the catio) got half a days worth of sun. At first, it seemed like they weren’t going to make it. But then they bounced back… with a vengence!

At the townhouse, each plant usually had two or three buds. Now as you can see, each little plant is COVERED in them!

I was supposed to have four different types, though only two ever bloomed at the townhouse. So far, it’s just the common spotted purple one (Purple Beauty) blooming here.

But they are just lovely! They will bloom right until we get a hard frost, so I look forward to many more blooms to come. Definitely one of my favourite fall flowers.