Monthly Archives: March 2013

Diamond Luggage Tag [Pattern]

The company I work for sponsors a trip for employees nominated for Employee of the Month and 12 others drawn randomly from a hat of people who had good reviews for the last couple of years. It’s really a nice incentive to do a good job. A woman on my team was lucky enough to be selected so I wanted to give her a little something special for her trip.

She is a beginning crocheter so I wanted to surprise her with something crocheted… and something camo because that’s just how she rolls. *grins*

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Google Reader

So.. with Google Reader going away here shortly – I have a question to those who use a reader to subscribe to all their favorite feeds: What reader do you use or what reader will you be switching to?


Making Stitch Markers

I rarely use stitch markers for crochet – I keep some simple plastic ones on hand but have also been known to use a paper clip, a safety pin, and little scraps of yarn. But now that I’ve been knitting more, I am finding need for something a little more sturdy – something not too thick like the plastic but something that isn’t going to slip off.

After looking online, I decided to take a stab at making my own. This is what I came up with.

Squirt also took a stab.

The marker made with hearts was made by Squirt. She did a really good job – I was hoping she would make me more but she seemed to lose her momentum. The “eyeballs” across the top are mine. I kinda grouped them in the progressing stages of figuring out what worked and what didn’t.

Squirt had trouble getting the loop around the ring snag free – and getting the ring closed all the way. Even I had difficulty in squeezing the ring all the way closed – but it works and its really cute. I’m glad to have a token like this from her.

The blue eyes, that are by themselves, I tried them in the same manor that Squirt tried – and it didn’t work out too well for me. I had trouble getting the wire looped around and snag free. The middle “group” – the single pair of green eyes, was done a bit differently – I used a doubled up piece of wire around a smaller jump ring…. but in the end, I still shouldn’t have used the thicker wire.

So that brings me to my last group, the group of three, that look a lot better – I think this will be my method.

Perhaps in the near future, I’ll do a give away of some of my eyeball markers! (but let me make sure they work out ok first)

Have you ever tried to make your own stitch markers (beyond bending a paper clip just the right way) ? I’d love to see what you’ve created!


Christmas in March

I took a risk last week and ordered from Knit Picks – ya know, first order after the security issue with them putting customer info where it shouldn’t have been. I figure now is the best time to order – I bet they are really watching themselves. I bet they are more secure now than they ever have been.

Anywhoozles – I needed a yardage counter and of course, its nothing you can buy in town…. per norm.

So, I wanted to share my order with you all.

You can see the yardage counter so we won’t talk about that again.

I got two circular needles – US 2. One is the nickle plated kind and the other is that stripey wood/bamboo – what’s that called again?

I decided to try the two circular method of doing socks so I wanted to get nice circs that were different visually – I like the nickle a LOT.

Then, those items aside, I got 8 skeins of sock yarn – 6 of the skeins are Felici yarn and the last two are Stroll. They are really squishy! I can’t wait to make the socks. I think I’ll be making one pair for each person in the house. I’m really excited but put them aside for the zauberball.

I will keep you all updated on sock progress with the yarn from this order – but just know that right now, I’m spending a lot of time just squishing it and gazing at the pretty colors.


Year of Projects 2: Update 22

Project Percentage Complete: 49%
Overall Percentage Complete: 70%
Number of Project Items: 98
Number of Added Items: 90
Total Items: 188

Total Completed Project Items: 48
Total Completed Items: 132

I had one completion this week which is a pair of vanilla socks. They are a gift so I’m hoping the person that receives them really enjoys them.

I continue to work on the Wingspan shawl and have cast on another pair of vanilla socks … for myself this time. I am a little worried that I don’t have enough yarn for them…. let me explain.

I purchased 1 ball of zauberball (*excited face*) and used my new yardage counter to split it in half… but then in the end, it wasn’t even – I’m not sure but I’m pretty sure that there is some sort of a magic trick to using the yardage counter although I just thought I had to snap the yarn inside on the spinner wheel thingee and drag it through…. obviously I was over-simplifying things. *laughs*

SO, now I have my zauberball cut in what was supposed to be half – and one ball is smaller than the other. I decided to take on the smaller ball. I really do think that if I have enough, it will barely be enough to make an ankle sock – which is irritating. If I don’t have enough to make the sock, I get the joy of frogging all that work and deciding to make smaller socks for the youngest OR making it into a small shawlette.

Thoughts? Opinions?

Percentage-wise, I had the one finish but added another pair of socks to the list – so I’m just kinda breaking even with the overall craft numbers. I can’t wait to finish the wingspan since its on the original project items list, which means I’d be at 50% …. it would be nice to be more than half done by the time the year was up. *laughs*

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 me

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)
– 3 pair Vanilla Socks
– 2 plastic canvas door hanging pouches (for Valentine’s Day)
– 2 Ice Pack Pillowcases
– 13 Crochet Fortune Cookies
– 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 March 10, 2013 in My Projects


Crocheting My Life Back: Update 7

The Statistics
Current Weight: 292
Weekly Loss/Total Loss: -3/-8

Squares Allowed: 8
Squares Completed: 0

Thoughts on changes in the last two weeks
First and foremost, I want to let everyone know that I have decided to only post ever two weeks. Weekly seemed a bit frequent so I figure this may be best.

In the last two weeks I have begun drinking a protein shake I get from the local organic market. It’s gluten free and heart friendly. The consistency is a little odd BUT its still good. I have been drinking it in the morning as a breakfast replacement, using almond milk instead of regular milk or juice. I’m really happy with the result so far.

It isn’t meant for weight loss, but cutting out the extra calories has been enough to push for a relatively steady weight loss since starting to drink it.

Now, I am at a point where I think it’ll be ok to make squares. There was something before where it felt like what I lost was a fluke…. that it would come back. I honestly held back making squares because I felt like it would all just come back (even though it was only a few pounds). Now I’m a wee bit more confident in making the squares.

I would like to get the pounds to come off faster. I know that slow and steady is best, but I would really like to lose at least 2 a week. In order to do that, I know I need to focus more on getting some sort of a workout regime here at the house.

So thank you for the suggestion to get a meal replacement shake. While the Spirutein is not meant to be a dieting shake – it really has been a blessing.

Things I want to do next week
Now that I have begun replacing out my breakfasts with a filling shake with great protein, now I need to work on getting a workout regime going at home.

Any suggestions? What are your favorite workout routines? Do you do DVDs?

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

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Posted by on March 9, 2013 in My Projects


Finished ’em!

Just a quick note to say that I finished ’em.

They are plain ole vanilla socks with a ribbed top. The yarn is one of the Debra Norville colors – I think “chili” is what it was named.

My daughter is lounging here, making sure they felt ok.

They are not for her.


Toasty Toes

It may be winter outside, but my feet are toasty inside my Opal socks.

I don’t think I ever shared a proper photo of the socks on my feet… well… there they are!

Hope those of you dealing with winter, snow, and ice are staying warm.

That is all.

1 Comment

Posted by on March 7, 2013 in My Projects


WIP Wednesday

Whelp, here it is… we have moved into March (and definitely like a lion). It’s just crazy how fast this year has gone by. I know years ago my dad said that the older you get, the faster it goes. It was hard to grasp when I was a kid because it seemed like forever until my birthday came… and forever until summer break… forever until Christmas…. so on and so forth.

But now, here I am, in my 30s and feeling the sentiment of my dad’s words.

With that bit of randomness out of the way, here we are… Wednesday. I haven’t done a WIP Wednesday post in a few so I figured why not. I have a couple things actively going (not the Navajo.. DOH!) so I figured I would share my progress in the creative images taken by the Man….

It may be 9:31pm, but it’s still Wednesday!

My Wingspan

First up is my wingspan. I am still not getting into knitting this. Its just kinda… dry. Ya know – drier than what knitting normally is *laughs* The Man chose to use the new LensBaby lens to take the photo so it may seem a bit blurry at the edges – well, its supposed to be that way. I do think he’s trying to figure out how to manually focus it, so yea….

I am on my 3rd triangle and like I said… its slow going.

I do like the yarn a lot although I admit, I’m a little worried that I won’t have enough to make it long enough to wrap around me – no, that’s not a dig because I’m overweight… I really am hoping to make it to the 8 triangles but in my mind am seriously doubting it. Even worse, I got the yarn on clearance at a yarn shop not very close to here. If I need more yarn, I’m going to have to go on an online hunt. I may have a post about that soon.. ya know – for all you expert yarn finders.

I basically put the wingspan on my bedside table… when I go to bed, I like to knit or crochet a bit before dozing off – it has become my bed project.

My daylight project has been socks. I told you I was bit by the sock bug… there is just something cool about making socks.

This is a standard pair of vanilla socks. There is no pattern on the foot but 10 rows after turning the heel, I started a 2,1 ribbing.

I really do like these socks a LOT. They are turning out very nicely and are super squishy.

As you can see by this photo, I’m pretty close to done. I have just the top of the second sock to finish off. I’d like to post this message and head over to the couch and do just that – finish them off.

I want to say I have around 18 rows left. Not too shabby.

Something you cannot tell with the picture above is that I *almost* got the stripes to line up. I really did want them to match up really nicely. While they are close, if you lay the sock down flat, as you can see with the sock that is still on the needles, there is an extra stripe around where the heel was turned. The other sock has the heel in pink with NO striping at the front side.


Oh well, I did try and it is pretty close.

 I was going to keep it down to just a couple pictures but the Man really is trying to improve his photography skills. While this shot isn’t the best, I really like the affect from the LensBaby lens along with the perspective he chose for these socks.

Oh – and look – they are on the beast-ghan (which, in case you were wondering, is extremely warm and heavy.. its like sleeping under a big snuggley hug).

So there you have it. My WIP Wednesday.

If you like reading up on what others are working on OR would like to post your own WIP Wednesday update, head on over to Tami’s Amis and check out the Mr. Linky! There is also another Mr. Linky over at Frontier Dreams – if you update your crafting progress on any day of the week, post your progress there.


Posted by on March 7, 2013 in My Projects


Sushi Sadness….

First, I want to apologize for not posting anything in the last week. As always, things have gotten a bit hectic although I’m trying to reign it all in now. I usually try to have several posts scheduled at certain intervals since I know my writing tends to go in spurts – I update a lot then go through a week or two of drought – I do try to be sensible and not post everything as I write it, spreading it out a day or two in between the posts just to ensure my blog doesn’t end up like an ole ghost town.

So what is pushing me to post today… well, this is going to be a no frills, no pictures kinda post – and its definitely not about crochet.

As many of my regular readers know, I’m struggling to lose weight. I am working towards the completion of my life-ghan, an afghan that represents each pound loss. In the end, my life-ghan should be 100 squares strong… 100 pounds lost.

Today, after my doctor’s appointment and getting a bit of work done at home, the Man offered to take me to our favorite sushi spot here in town. It is a small little out-of-the-way spot. The front of the restaurant has 4 tables then in the back, he has squeezed a few two-top tables into a hallway. When we walked in, the warmer side of the room only had 1 table open. At the other table sat a larger man.

By larger, please do not think that I am insulting him. I am a larger female. But I will say, this man was much larger than I was. I would guess him to be around 400 pounds, if not a bit more.

The Man and I sat down at the table next to him and ordered our sushi. Our talk, while low, I knew could be heard by the gent who was sitting next to us. We talked a little about my doctor’s appointment and then talk went to socks – ya know, I am expecting some yarn in the mail… for more socks. Because I’ve clearly been bitten by the sock bug (and it helps me to avoid crocheting on the Navajo… which I really should NOT be avoiding.. doh!).

Anywhoozles, talk continued until the Man asked who I was making socks for next. I said me. Then someone else again. Then me… I shall alternate with me always being in the middle. I talked of a pair of socks with vines and leaves that I want to make… and I talked about the Tardis socks I want to make as well… and that took us straight to painting the kids’ bedroom doors to look like the doors of the Tardis.

Did I mention we are Doctor Who fans?

It wasn’t long until our sushi arrived and the gent sitting next to us said “I’m sorry but I overheard you talking about Doctor Who. I’m a huge Doctor fan too.” We chatted a bit about the good Doctor. It is always good to meet another Whovian.

As the Man and I dug into our sushi, the other gent began shuffling around in his seat.

As he stands, he says (and I really wish I were kidding), “I’m gonna try and get out of here.. if you want to laugh at me, go ahead.”

I was taken aback that he would say that. One – we just had a great conversation, why would I laugh? Two – why would anyone laugh? Three – its not like I’m a stick thin gal… I’m a big girl too.

I said quickly “No, no – there is no need to say that.”

He squeezed through, said a polite goodbye and left.

I was stunned.

Why would he say something like that? Does he run into people who laugh at him? If so – how sad is that? Even more so, how sad that he felt the need to verbalize it to strangers…

After we finished our sushi, we got in the car and I couldn’t shake that thought.

And honestly, I guess it went to a more personal level for me – do I do that? Do I put myself out there in a negative way, giving people permission to make fun of me, laugh at me, or just generally not accept my physical appearance?

I really do think this is something that I do. Perhaps I don’t do it at the level of inviting people at the next table in a restaurant to laugh at me as I leave, but I do permit people, if they do see something wrong with me, to continue to see me as inferior because I am obese. I also believe this is a natural response to a lowered self esteem – if I am giving permission for it to happen, then it is not a boundary people are crossing – I am putting myself in a position to expect mockery instead of one that would be surprised if people did make fun of me or laugh.

I really do wish I had said more – but honestly, I don’t know what I could have said. To tell him that no one has a right to laugh at him, regardless of his weight? Tell him that people who laugh really need to take a long hard look at themselves rather than focusing on belittling others.

I don’t know.

I don’t even know what the purpose of this post is other than to document my surprise and how it quickly came back to how I treat myself or at least open myself up to others to be treated.

It was sad, to say the least.