Monthly Archives: February 2013

Year of Projects 2: Update 21

Project Percentage Complete: 49%
Overall Percentage Complete: 70%
Number of Project Items: 98
Number of Added Items: 89
Total Items: 187

Total Completed Project Items: 48
Total Completed Items: 131

I completed nothing this week….. I worked a bit on the socks I started as a special present and have continued working on my Wingspan shawl. So needless to say, this has been a knitting type week.

This is a picture of the sock I am working on – the first sock. I have about half the leg done too, so that’s good. I was hoping to finish it up this weekend but with all things considered, it just didn’t happen.

Sitting here thinking a bit, i did crochet a bit this past week. I crocheted another ice pack pillow case and posted the pattern here on the blog for the taking. It’s a quick crochet and good for using up cotton left over from dishcloth making.

I don’t have much more to report to y’all. I wish I had. I am hoping to at least finish one of the socks this week and get a start on the second. Wanna know why? Because I bought some more sock yarn and want to get a start on those as well.

Project List Items (not started/in progress)
Navajo Indian Multi-Color Afghan (gift)
– 17 squares for SIBOL  
– 9 crochet knockers for donation
– Knit Wingspan Shawl 

– 5 pet beds for donation
– 10 chemo caps for donation
– 2 swiffer covers (for me!)
– Knit a Sweater for the Man
– 1 pair spat warmers
Woven Blocks Crochet Quilt
Room Shoes
Amimono Kimono (for me!)

Project List Items (done)
– 33 squares for SIBOL
– 5 knit/crochet cloths for Mom (Christmas present)
– 5 knit/crochet cloths for SIL (Christmas present)
– State Fair Afghan
Dead Fish Hat (Birthday gift for DS)
– Spidey-colored Round Ripple Lapghan (Christmas present)
– 1 crochet knockers for donation
Wrap (ended poorly – was supposed to be for Squirt but… didn’t work out)

Added Items (not started/in progress)
Tongues of Fire (for me) 
Pimpelliese (for me)
– Vanilla Socks for Mom

Striped Granny Bag
– Elite Syncopations
– Harry Potter Scarf 
– Blue or Purple Cowl (for a friend; after the holidays)

Added Items (done)
– Have a Heart Shawl (free Red Heart pattern)
– Magic Square Potholder
– Boot Toppers (Christmas present)
– 50 Ruffle Scarves
– Striped Scarf (Christmas Present)
– Crochet Clock (Christmas Present)
– House Slippers (Christmas Present)
Warm Hat with Bill (Christmas Present)
– Stocking Cap (Christmas present)
– 3 icord knit snakes
My Garter Slipped Scarf (for me)
– 1 pair Vanilla Socks
– 2 plastic canvas door hanging pouches (for Valentine’s Day)
– 2 Ice Pack Pillowcase
– 13 Crochet Fortune Cookies
– 1 pair of Vanilla Socks for me
– Headband to Match Garter Slip Scarf (for me) 

This post is part of the Ravelry Group “Come Blog-A-Long” #yearofprojects Project. If you are interested in joining along or finding other posts similar to this one, visit the group on Ravelry.

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Posted by on February 25, 2013 in My Projects


Crocheting My Life Back: Update 6

The Statistics
Current Weight: 295
Weekly Loss/Total Loss: -1/-5

Squares Allowed: 5
Squares Completed: 0

Thoughts on my weekly change
I really didn’t do a whole lot this last week. I weighed myself on Friday and was actually up to 302 – by that I had gained 7 pounds overnight. I wasn’t able to blog on Friday and honestly, with a number like 302, it didn’t hurt my feelings any.

Saturday night was spent in the ER with a freakishly high pulse and chest discomfort. Now – keep in mind, I don’t think I had a heart attack and that’s what the doctor’s said as well. But I didn’t like how I felt and it totally freaked me out. I don’t know what I did or what was going on…. but I went. I ended up getting the ok as far as heart attack but did walk away with a heart monitor for 24 hours.

I will be turning the monitor in tomorrow after work and I will be making an appointment with my regular physician as well. In the end – I really do think I’m going to ask about bariatric surgery. I need to find out what it entails and just how much my insurance will cover. I feel like a failure for considering it but at the same time, I cannot continue to live at this size. It may not have been a heart attack on Friday night but it will be one eventually – I need help losing this weight.

Now – I may or may not have it done, but I need to do something.

Things I have changed in the last week
I didn’t do the stairs in big sessions like I have in previous weeks but I’m trying to take the stairs more as I move floor to floor – and that adds up.

Things I want to do next week
I really don’t know… any suggestions?

Picture Time
No pictures this week as I haven’t hit a 10 pound milestone.


Posted by on February 25, 2013 in My Projects


My Yarn Buddy

Do you have a special yarn buddy? A friend that like to stay close to your side even if you are focused on your yarn?

My yarn buddy is my dog Andrew – shown here, this is the kitchen chair that I frequently sit at when I’m working on my blog or sometimes when I craft (and want to use the computer or watch TV from a good vantage point).

Often, Andrew will come lay at my feet, hoping I use him as a foot rest (and rub his sides with my feet) and ocassionally, he hangs out under my chair…. This was him last week – he was under the chair, relaxing, catching some shut-eye on the rung of the chair I was sitting in. The Man was able to catch a picture of him before Andrew got up and followed me to the other room.

Andrew is definitely my yarn buddy. I love him so.

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Posted by on February 21, 2013 in Not Fiber Related


Ice Pack Pillowcase [Pattern]

I think every household has ice packs they buy for lunch boxes – packs that aren’t necessarily built for injuries but in the end, end up on the boo-boos just as much as the nice ones designed for the task.

Recently, Bird found herself in need of the dentist’s chair and when she came to stay with us for her recovery, none of the ice packs were comfortable enough for her to curl up with and sleep – ice in a baggie was just too darn cold, never mind the leaks. And ice packs were just so rough with their pointy corners.

I needed something that was cool, not bitter cold to the touch, that would be soft enough for her face and help keep leaking to a minimal mess.

So while she slept, I went to my hook for a solution.

Read the rest of this entry »


Posted by on February 19, 2013 in Original Patterns


KnitPicks – Data Leak

I normally do try to stay somewhat on topic but I feel it is important to share this information with my readers, especially knowing many of you shop online at the same places I do.

Recently, it was discovered that the Crafts Americana Group, or CAG, accidentally put a file which included buyer data (name, address, credit card numbers) in a location that was not secure. This means the site was not hacked, but if a person with ill-intent were looking in the right place, this file would have been made available to them relatively easily. You can read the announcement made by CEO Matt Petkun here:

That’s right – that’s a KnitPicks blog link.

CAG includes Knit Picks, Connecting Threads, and Artist’s Club. If you made a purchase from any of these three sites at the latter part of 2012, you may be affected.

The file was made available in an unsecure location mid December until mid January. According to the post by Mr. Petkun, US residents were mailed a letter if their data was in that file. I have not received anything – but from what I can see, no one has actually came forward and said they received any communication their data may have been compromised. He does offer to pay for any fees associated to switching your card information, which is nice.

So basically – this is just to make you aware of the situation. You can do the digging to get all the details. There is one blogger who is timelining the whole incident, although I admit I’m not exactly sure why – her blog is here – and it is specifically for this incident. It is not a blog she had before this and I doubt she’ll maintain it after this situation is resolved.

I have contacted KnitPicks twice since I know a purchase was made there in December asking direct if my information was included in that file. No one has offered to tell me “yes or no” but I will let you know if I ever get an answer from them or a letter in the mail.

If you made any purchases at KnitPicks in the latter part of 2012, you may want to contact your bank or credit card company with this information, letting them know there may be illegal activity on your card or that you want to change your card/account number.

The only reason I’m choosing to post this is because in the circle of blogs I read, I haven’t seen anything about it and I wanted to put it out there for people who may be in the same boat as me – not knowing more than there may be an issue I need to prepare for.


Posted by on February 19, 2013 in In the News


Fortune Cookie Pattern Review

LoveHearts Pattern (c) June GIlbank

With Valentine’s Day looming, I made a decision to make something small and different for the man, the kids, and my coworkers. I saw a cute pattern for crochet fortune cookies on Ravelry and made the decision THAT is what I was going to make.

For the Man and my kids, the fortune cookie was just a small piece to their Valentine’s Day – for my coworkers, I left them a crocheted fortune cookie and a piece of chocolate.

The pattern I’m reviewing is lcoated on Ravelry and is also on Yarnovations, where the Ravelry link takes you. The pattern includes instructions for the fortune cookies and a jar wrap. This review is ONLY for the fortune cookies. I did not make the jar wrap.

First and foremost, you don’t need to know much more than how how chain, slip stitch, and single crochet for this pattern, making it a good pattern for new crocheters. You do crochet in the round without joining (crochet in a spiral) so a beginner would have to decide if they were comfortable with this or not before taking on making a fortune cookie.

The pattern is very simple, consisting of a total of 6 rows. I think for the more expert crocheter, it is a pain to try and forget that when you increase on this pattern, you increase but still only do 18 stitches rather than the full increase round. You see this on rows 4, 5 and 6 –  you want to add more stitches to do full repeats, but you have to remember to stop at 18 stitches, regardless of it being a full round or not.

The pattern suggests you fold the cookie in half and stitch around it and THEN you put the fortune in. I found it much easier to slide the fortune in and stitch the circle into a half circle with the fortune already in place. If you try to stuff the fortune in after you make it a half circle, the fortune gets wrinkled up a bit – I wanted mine to look a bit more pristine, ya know – as if they came straight from the fortune cooking making factory.

There is no real instruction on how to stitch up the cookie into a half circle OR how to stitch it into the shape of a fortune cookie. I think the pattern author was assuming people knew how to make the shape. I ended up whip-stitching the cookie closed in about the top 1/3 of the half circle shape – I left a decent hole on either side and, as I said earlier, I did the whip-stitching around the paper rather than putting the paper in afterwards. I then, instead of finishing off, passed my super long tail used to do the whip stitch down to the middle where I bent the cookie, shaped the edges using my fingertips and stitched the 2 sides together to the cookie shape (with the ends pinched onto my thumb and index finger).

I can at least say I know why the pattern writer didn’t explain it in the pattern. I just tried to in the above paragraph and realize that I just spoke a foreign language even to myself! Maybe they left that part out because it really is too complex to tell people how to do it – but perhaps a picture would have helped. I don’t know.

I think the most complicated part of this pattern was coming up with quotes to go into my cookies. The pattern page from Yarnovations includes several fortunes but I wanted cookies with quotes about friendship. It took me some time but in the end I had them printed and in the cookies.

On Valentine’s morning, my coworkers were very impressed at the little cookies. Some people didn’t even pull the fortune out because the way I did it, it was VERY difficult to get the fortune back into the cookie. One of my friends at work is on a mission to find out what every cookie’s fortune is – especially when she found out I didn’t duplicate any of them.

In the end, I’d say I give this pattern 4 balls of yarn because it was easy and the ending result was very much appreciated. I would have given it more if there would have been more instruction on finishing up the cookies, especially the part where you stitch it to look like the cookie shape.

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Posted by on February 19, 2013 in My Reviews


My Valentines

First and foremost, I offer an extremely belated Valentine’s wish to all my readers. I had hoped to get on and post on Valentine’s Day but it just ended up not happening… why?

Because I waited until the last moment to work on my Valentine’s mini project for my coworkers.


But, besides that, these two door hangers are something I wanted to share with you all even though they aren’t crochet. These are made with plastic canvas (if you couldn’t tell already *laughs*)

The red one was made for Squirt and the black one was made for DC. The idea was that I would put little treats inside the basket front and have them wake up with a fun little “I Love You” on the morning of Valentine’s Day.

To say the least, DC was the most excited to have it. He went through it and read the note I left and “opened” his crochet fortune cookie. He hugged me and said thank you and I love you – he’s so sweet!

Squirt liked the items but never really said anything else about them.

Needless to day – I thought I’d get the opposite response – but that’s ok. I know they both enjoyed it and returned the love with valentines they made.

Made by DC: A Negative Space Valentine

By Squirt: A More Traditional Valentines (with crochet magnet holding it up)

By Squirt: “Owl Always Love You” Valentine

The last item I made was Valentine’s Day fortune cookies, made from a pattern I found on Ravelry. I will post a review of the pattern but just know, the end result, was a huge success! Everyone loved them.

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Posted by on February 18, 2013 in Not Fiber Related