Sunday, September 11, 2016

A Book I'm Reading...

this is one of many that I have started.  I'm only a chapter in so far....so can't give any true thoughts on it yet.  However, I know someone else who just finished it and they loved it - so I have high hopes!

The title, of course, was the first thing that caught my eye!  And then I read the blurb inside and that cinched the deal...

"Mrs. Creasey is missing and the avenue is alive with whispers.  The neighbors blame her disappearance on the heat wave (I can relate)...  but Grace and Tilly (who are 10 years old) are not convinced.  They decide to take matters into their own hands and try to bring Mrs. Creasey home"

The knitting that the book is on top of is my ZickZack scarf. I'm determined to get it done and wear it this winter. Of course that is what I said "last" winter. But this time around, it WILL happen!



Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Knitting Quirks...

We all have them - fess up!  I may have more than many people, but I own it - LOL!

1.  I wrap all my yarn onto paper towel rolls.  Even the ones that come in balls!  Drives my sister batty...

2.  Another thing that drives my sister batty is the fact that I write down every pattern I do onto index cards - every single row - even if there are over 400 of them - like with one of the patterns I'm doing now. But it works for me and saves me during all of those times I get interrupted while knitting.

3.  I dislike double pointed needles. I've tried them over and over - I've watched videos - and on and on. But these needles and me - we are over!

4.  I buy way too many patterns on Ravelry and then end up not doing way too many of them.  Sometimes it is because the pattern turns out to be too difficult for me - or just more "fiddly" than I want to deal with. I always say I'll get around to doing them at one point - but I probably won't!  But I tell myself - hey the pattern wasn't even the cost of a Starbucks.... and then I can forgive myself...
Because I still have the pattern - but the Starbucks is a goner into my tummy - LOL!

5.  I prefer the patterns I knit to be spelled out on how many rows, inches, and so on that you are supposed to do to get it to look like the designer. Then if I want to do more rows to make it larger or longer, etc., I can. I dislike when they say - knit until your yarn is gone.    At least give me the length and depth of your finished object!

6.  When I come home from the yarn shop - I like to pick out each pattern I'm going to use with each yarn and then wind the yarn and put everything into a little shopping bag, along with the needles I will be using. After that is done, I actually start each project - just a row or two - and then set it aside to get back to later.  Sometimes (well, many times) the yarn doesn't want to be what I chose for it! So I listen to the yarn and pick another pattern (or 2 or 10) - to try out.  Until it speaks to me and says - yes, this is the one!

I know I have other quirks, but this is enough sharing for now - ha!

Sunday, August 28, 2016

A Book I Am Reading...

This is one of the many many MANY books I have started right now.  I started reading it on Thursday and had to literally force myself up out of the chair to start dinner...  I was reading some more of it yesterday. As I don't want to finish it in one gulp, I made myself set it aside... again!  But I have a feeling it could get finished today!

Arden Arrowood's twin sisters disappeared on her watch over twenty years ago, when she was only 8 years old and they were around two years old.  Everything in her present day life is falling apart.  She has held onto the hope that her sisters are still alive, and it seems she can't move forward until she finds them. When her father dies, she inherits Arrowood, the same house where the twins disappeared on that fateful day.  She returns there, determined to discover what really happened during that tramatic summer.

 

Thursday, August 25, 2016

OTN...

I'm close to finishing my gradient scarf.  It is done the long way - so 400 stitches I have to knit each row - aghhhh! Therefore, I only do about one row each time I pick it up - so have been knitting on it for awhile. Very simple pattern - just knitting so many rows with each color - making an eyelet row - and then switching to the next color. The gradient kit came with 5 colors - but I'm leaving out the last one - which is a yellow shade.  One reason - I just don't want to add it in with these other colors for some reason - and another, I'm so over wanting to have this scarf done - LOL!  I will use it in some other project one day. I have another gradient kit which is variations of grays. So I thought the yellow with that would add a nice pop. I just have to find the right project for it all!


Monday, August 22, 2016

Yarn Shops....

My yarn shop - the one I love so much - is closing by the end of this month. The owner wanted to retire. I can't blame her, and am happy for her. But so so sad for me....  I went there for years....sometimes two times a month (or more).... It was only a 15 to 20 minute drive from my house. I could spend as much time in there as I wanted... just hanging out, chatting, looking at yarn, buying yarn...  She had such a huge selection of yarns.  Her shop was small, but she had it packed with all types of fibers, brands, colors, from low price to high price - and in between.  Tons of needles, buttons, pattern books, on and on....  I could return yarn with no hassles... She had a good rewards program....

I've gone to 4 other yarn places since I got the news about the closing - trying to find my new "spot".  Here is my review...

the first place has been there for a kazillion years.  She had about two brands of yarn...that was it...  one rack of needles, that was mostly empty.  How she is still in business, I really do not know.

the second place was more of a drive to get to and not a pleasant drive on top of that - lots of construction going on - lots of traffic.  When we got there, it was mainly her own hand dyed yarns.  Only one or two other brand names - and not brand names that I use.  None of my "go to yarns".... Nice yarns she hand dyes - don't get me wrong. But just not what I want.  The yarn shop was cute and had "atmosphere"... but I won't be going back...

the third place is near my house - closer than my favorite shop even.  And she did have some name brand yarns - one or two that I've used in the past. But still none of my "go to yarns".  She also had lots of yarns that are hand dyed by local people.  And I can see myself buying them.  I found out that unless someone takes over the shop - she too will be closing - within the next year.

the 4th place was decent - had one or two of my "go to yarns.  and some yarns that I've seen online and wanted to try... had never seen in person - so that was fun. But her shop is really disorganized and that bugged me. Too many different brands stuffed into the same bins.  It is about a 45 minute each way drive...  But I will go back.  Not often, but from time to time...

I guess I'm spoiled by my favorite shop and it will take me awhile to get used to it not being there anymore. I know, that like me, other people that went there for years and years - are going to be in for a big shock when they start looking around for a new shop.

There is one more place I would like to try - and will at some point. But I cannot see myself going there often.  They have some yarn brands that I use and some that I want to try out. But it is over an hour or more each way - and there is no free parking....

I can foresee myself doing more and more of my yarn shopping online. Not something that I want to do - I enjoy going to the shop and touching and seeing the yarns up close. But if the shops around me do not carry my "go to yarns", then I have no choice...

and I am bummed.  Happy that I can find them and more online, but bummed out that I can't find them in a shop....  sigh....

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

OTN....





I recently started a pattern called "Kallara" (on Ravelry).  There are quite a number of patterns out there that resemble this one (altho there are differences of course)....  I love a lot of those other patterns, however, they just seem soooo huge!  So when I saw this one - I clicked the "buy button" very quickly. It is easy to do and I think you could change it around a bit - and do the stripes 4 rows per color, rather than 2 per color.  Which I may do when I knit this again.  You have to keep marking the center stitch, which gets a bit fiddly - but less so as the rows get longer. Granted, you could do away with the marker. I tried that a few times, but since I have a tendency to veg out when I'm knitting (either because I get caught up in a tv show - or my thoughts), I was afraid I would just keep knitting right past where I'm supposed to do the center stitches!  When I bought this pattern, I wanted to start on it right away - so just grabbed two yarns I had here - a blueish gray and a red (not the colors I would have chosen).. but I'm actually liking it quite a bit.

This book is the first in a series I heard mentioned on the book group I run online.  I love it!  I've already bought the next book in the series and will order the third one this week. I think there are quite a number of more books still to come (can't remember how many). It is about a single Mom with two kids who lives in the town of Deadwood...along with a motley crew of other characters.  Her kids are a hoot!

Monday, August 8, 2016

An Easy Spagetti Recipe....

This is not a "wet" spaghetti sauce - but more on the dry side.  I'm sure you could add some type of liquid to it if you want more "sauce"....

Ingredients....
1 pound of ground beef
1 ... canned Italian Diced Tomatoes (you could use two if you want)  I use Hunts brand...
1 cup of chopped onions
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
2 tablespoons of Italian dressing

Brown the ground beef and onions
Add in the rest of the ingredients
Bring to a boil...then reduce the heat to medium low - cover the pan - and cook for about 5 minutes.
Serve over pasta noodles of your choice