Wednesday, November 28, 2007

#4 child is 6

#4 child who is DD#3 is now 6. Boy how the time flies. Her Kindergarden teacher met her when she was 2 days old and we both cannot believe that she is getting so big!! My in-laws came over to celebrate with us.
Her favorite chocolate cake recipe (also Grandpa's favorite!!).

DD#1 and DS#1 wanted mustaches as I was frosting the cake so I happily obliged. As you can tell, I will have many stories and possibly a slide show at their wedding rehersal dinners :o)
Cupcakes for school - same recipe as above just added sprinkles for added interest and maximum sugar intake.

Now to get ready for the party for her friends on Saturday (yet another cake) and another family gathering on Sunday - my family can come on Sunday and of course my in-laws will be here. All in all a way to just make the birthday last almost one full week. Emma Rose is an excited, happy camper!
The only thing I have to think about is......the goody bags for her friends to bring home from the party. I would rather not put in candy or a bunch of junky toys. What to do.....?

Monday, November 26, 2007


Happy Thanksgiving!!! (belated) At the last moment we decided to go to Kirkwood to play in the snow. We left on Wednesday and just got back yesterday. There was not much snow - but we had a great time anyway. Kirkwood made snow and we got to do a lot of sledding. The kids were in heaven!! We had lots of down time as a family (no screens or electronics of any kind there) and played games, read books and just generally hung out. A most excellent time was had by all!!
Only a little knitting got done but there was progress made:
"A Very Berry T-Shirt"
Several inches - the color is just perfect for DD#2

More was done on the hat. As you can see, I added fun fur to the last couple of rows on this hat and now it looks "fluffy". DD#3 is into "fluff".

Because of the addtion of the fun fur, when the last round of knitting is cast off and 17 stitches on each side are put on dpns for the ear flaps, the stitches want to slide off of the dpns. I didn't know what to do - how do I keep those stitches on the needle while I knit the other ear flap. DH to the rescue .... Chip Clips of course!!! They are working out quite nicely!! Hopefully tonight I will be able to finish this hat :o)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Clue #1 of the Mystic Waters is complete!! I am totally enjoying this knit - the chart is easy for me to read and I truly like the finished product. I cannot wait to work on Clue 2 :o)

A closeup of the beads I chose. They are really, really subtle. I hope that they "pop" a little more after this shawl is blocked. I do like the color of them against the yarn.
DD#3's hat started. The way the color is working out is really nice. I think she will like it a lot. I still have not woven in the ends of the other hat. Soon maybe...... knitting is such an obsession!!

I will leave you today with a picture of our newest members of the family. My daughter loves animals so much and she takes care of them so well that I just couldn't say no when she asked for another guinea pig. We were going to surprise her for the holidays, but I didn't have the heart to make her wait. They are as yet unnamed. She wants to wait until they "grow" into names. We will see what she chooses :o)

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Another bookmark

This is the latest bookmark from the bookmark group. I seem to finish these always about a week late. It could be that I like to block them to make the patterns show up a bit better. Blocking also makes them flatter :o). I have no idea of the colorway but this is crochet cotton in size #10 on US#1 needles.
A closeup of the pattern. I would say that I really like it, but I seem to say that just about everything I knit :o)

The whole thing.
Knitting around here is slowly progressing. DS#1 hat is done but the ends still need to be woven in. DS#2 sweater has progressed to the Right Front decrease stage so should be going a little faster - It is nice that the sleeves are knit as you go so after the right front is complete I just have to complete the left front and put buttons on. Kind of cool! Started DD#3's hat and have partial cast-on for DD#2's T-shirt. DD#1 scarf is laguishing right now as well as DH's sweater. Oh, Well.....I still have a little time left!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Pre Thanksgiving Celebration

Our Thanksgiving celebration went really well and was loads of fun! Just about everyone in the family came (31 in all) and it was a great time. I wish I had taken more pictures, but after the family started showing up, I just talked and forgot about my camera! Oh, well, I have some shots of some of the things that I made for our celebration..

Vegetable Medley

Cranberry Chutney

Green Beans with lemon sauce

Regular old chocolate chip cookies made by the kids-YUMMY

Peanut Butter cookies with a miniature reeses peanut butter cup inside

Triple Treat Bars

Parsimmon cake made by one of my friends for the occasion

I did make a turkey and a whole bunch of appetizers and everyone brought something to share, but this is the extent of my picture taking on this Thanksgiving - better pictures next year :o)
On the knitting front - not too much accomplished this weekend. Kept plugging along on the holiday gifts and Mystic Waters. I am making progress, just everything kind of looks the same as it did last week - blobs of knitting, but nothing finished!! Soon I hope!

Friday, November 16, 2007

In Progress

OK. First I forgot to add what yarn I used for the squirrel dishcloth. It is a really nice yarn and it was probably a little wasteful to use it for this project, but I am glad I did or I wouldn't have known how soft it was. It is Luna from Cacade Yarns and is 100% Peruvian Cotton. It is washable and dryable and very nice to knit with. This yarn was one of the yarns we got in our goodie bag from Knitting Camp. I just found a pattern for Pocket Book Slippers on Hakucho's Blog that I think will go nicely with this yarn. Gift for next year possibly???

This is the hat for DS#1 in progress. I love it and more importantly, I think my son will like it :o) My DH has asked for one in the same colorway so I need to go back to my LYS and ask how to make this a wee bit bigger. This is turning out to be a very quick knit. It is easy and fun and the way the color changes is great to watch. I can't wait to finish this one and start the next in the other colorway!
This is a progress shot of DS#2's sweater. It is at the point where I can start the neck shaping. This is also a fun and quick knit. It is hard to quit knitting when I get to change colors every two rows........"I'll just quit after the next color change...well maybe the next.....just one more" :o)!

Off to fix the lunches for the kids for school today and then to start preparations for our big Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow night! That's right, a few days early. We always celebrate Thanksgiving the Saturday before Thanksgiving. More of the family can come (less conflicts) which makes for a GREAT time. It is always here at our home and I usually feel relatively under control until right about now when the list of things to do is getting longer and I don't seem to be making any headway! It all gets done in the end and we all have fun so no worries!

Our small home shouldn't have any trouble at all in hosting 33 people - HAH!!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Squirrel Dishcloth

Ta da - the November dishcloth. A cute little squirrel

He is just so cute, I had to get a closeup of him.
More in progress photos tomorrow. I am about half way done with a hat for DS#1, just about ready to do a front on DS#2's sweater, on row 29 of Mystic Waters, ready to cast on for DD#2 shirt and have been working on DD#1's scarf. If you are keeping count, that means than DD#3's hat is not yet even in the running, and DH sweater is languishing.

I read on the Yarn Harlot's blog yesterday that there were 42 days of knitting left - 41 as of today. EEEEEK!!! I better get my needles clicking :o)!!!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Mystic Waters KAL

We are all sad over here in my corner of the woods. Our beloved pet guinea pig passed away yesterday. We will miss you Brownie and hope you know that you were loved. Brownie was just a regular guinea pig that dd#2 picked out when she was 5. That was 4 1/2 years ago. Taking care of Brownie was her responsibility. Every morning she would get up and feed, water and get Brownie some kind of treat. Brownie was played with everyday and received lots of hugs. DD#2 is devastated. Take care Brownie, we loved you lots.
Onto some knitting content because knitting always cheers me up.
I am just now starting the Mystic Waters KAL. I knitted up this swatch yesterday and brought it to knit night. As you can see, I used several sizes of needles because I was unsure of which size would look the best with this yarn.
If you are reading this post and wouldn't mind letting me know which size needle you like the best that would be great. At knit night the reigning winner was US size 4, with 3 and 5 coming in second. Look below for close up shots of the knitting with each size needle.

My personal favorites are sizes US 3 & 4, but I could be swayed :o)!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Stash Enhancement

Lovely yarns have made their way into my home. All just ready to be cast on for a new project!! It is truly not my fault! The keeps attacking me. Every time I walk into Full Thread Ahead it jumps off the shelves and into my basket or onto the top of my stroller. Once it is there, I cannot abandon it, I just NEED to take it home and turn it into something. String into a wearable object still amazes me. I know how it works, but I look to the right of me where the ball of yarn is and I look down at my needles and that piece of string coming from the ball of yarn has magically transformed itself into a little piece of fabric. One day I am sure this will not be so amazing to me, but I cannot even imagine that day. So I revel in new yarns and new projects :o)

The two balls of yarn above are destined to be hats for #1 son and #3 daughter. The topmost yarn is Classic Worsted Tapestry from Universal Yarn Inc. in the colorway called Coal Fire. I think my son will love it! The bottom yarn is Inspire from Wisdom Yarns in the colorway #6 (I hate numbers, I love inspirational names :o) I have never knit a hat before so I am a little bit nervous, but Hollis had a pattern from her mom that I liked so I will try it. She has never steered me wrong before. I am also going to knit night tonight (if my husband gets home on time) to start it and get going. That way if I run into snags there are a few people who can help me out. Hopefully I will be able to make some progress.

These lovelies are Cotton Classic Color from Tahki Yarns in colorway #104 (another number :o(). The picture shows it to be a little more blue than it really is. The color is more of an overall teal looking color and is just so pretty. It is destined to become the Very Berry T-shirt from Magknits and designed by Lucia Tedesco. I made one of these in a variegated pinky/purple color for dd#3 and now dd#2 would like one. The blue/green will go perfectly with her blue eyes. I simply will have to cast on for this in the next few days!!!

This is the only yarn I went to the store to find. I was looking for something for the Mystic Waters Mystery KAL. This is what I found. It is so pretty and soft and the colors remind my of the ocean. It is Melody superwash from Jojoland in the colorway MS16 (EEEK another number, I had no idea) - I will call it "Deep Ocean". I am currently knitting my swatch to see what size needles will look the best and the color after knitting is gorgeous. I have completed swatching size US1, US2, US3 and am working on US4 and then will go up to US5 just for comparison. I am hoping to be done with the swatch by tonight so I can ask the ladies at knit night what they think. I think just by looking at it unblocked that the size US1 is too small. The fabric is too dense and is curling very badly, but I will wait to see what everyone else says.

A closeup of this beautiful, soft yarn

The beads I have chosen for the Mystic Waters. I think they are perfect for the yarn. I usually like shinier beads, but these matte ones are really nice and I don't think I could have gotten a more perfect color to go with the yarn.

This monstrosity is Oceana from Cherry Tree Hill in the colorway Northern Lights. It has quite a bit of sparkle in it that did not show up in the picture and is quite pretty. It is destined to become the swing coat below. Although the picture on the pattern is not very inspiring, I have seen two knitted up and worn that are very striking. I couldn't pass the display rack without getting one of these :o)

Saturday, November 10, 2007


Another October bookmark. This picture does not show how "sparkly" the "yarn" is. It is REALLY sparkly. It was not enjoyable to knit with. I don't even know what it is. I used it a couple of years ago on a princess dress to liven up the bodice. It was couched in random squiggles all over the bodice piece which was then sewn into the costume. I thought it might look nice as a bookmark as it has just been hanging out in the string container and was sort of pretty. is scratchy and stiff to knit with. Also, I have blocked this thing twice and almost as soon as the pins are removed it starts to curl in on itself. Oh, Well....dd#3 loves it and is using it as I blog so all is not lost!!!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Holiday knitting

This is going to be a sweater for my youngest. He is 2 1/2 and the last thing I knit him was a sweater right after he was born. It is the "Easy Playtime Set" from Lion Brand and the name is really accurate. It is super simple. This is my current car knitting and since the afternoons are filled with driving to soccer practice, swimming practice, various musical instruments for various children and sitting at the park - it is seeing quite a bit of action. I actually think he is going to like it and will hopefully wear it!

I also bought a bunch of great yummy yarn at Full Thread Ahead on Wednesday. 3 things for gifts and 2 things for me. I can't believe I haven't even taken it out of the car - I have been too busy!! I also don't want some of the kids to see the yarn as it will be made into gifts for them. They love yarn as much as I do and love to fondle the yarn and play around with it. My 9yo daughter is especially interested and sits next to me on Friday nights (Family Movie Night) and we both knit. Tonight is: Ratatouille. We saw it in the theatre and loved it and I got it yesterday at Costco. I can't wait to watch it tonight with everyone. Fridays are GREAT!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


Another finished bookmark from the bookmark group :o) I love these bookmarks!! This one our family gave as a gift to our 2nd grade teacher who just left to have surgery. We wish her well.

A closeup of the pattern. This one is so soft and lovely I had trouble parting with it.
Regular old #10 crochet cotton on size US#1 needles.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Louisa Harding Stole

Hot off the needles is this Louisa Harding stole. The yarn was purchased at "Knit by the Sea" while I was at camp "Knit-a-Way" and started on October 20th. I knit it in chunks at soccer games and in the evenings a little each night most nights. As you can tell, I am quite a slow knitter :o). It's the process I love. FO's are a great thing, but I just love the feel of yarn and needles - it is so quieting to my soul! This picture does not do the yarn justice. It has a line of sparkels running down the center of each ribbon piece and the whole thing just shimmers.

Up close.
Started: 20 October 2007
Finished: 3 November 2007 (ends to be woven in in the next day or two)
Yarn: Louisa Harding Suri Ribbon
Color: #15 (a deep red/burgundy color)
Dyelot: S-056
Yarn (2 were used): Louisa Harding Fauve
Color: #11 (red)
Dyelot: 21
Needles: US15

Today kinder extended day starts and I am excited that I might have some time after the little guy goes down for his nap to work on hubby's sweater and DD#1's piano scarf! The press of the holidays is ever approaching and too much needs to be finished :o)

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Projects from Camp Knit-A-Way

I love shadow knitting!! I simply cannot wrap my mind around how someone actually figured out and came up with a pattern that will look like this from straight on:

And this from the side. It boggles my brain! I think it is so very cool! This will be one of my oldest daughter's holiday gifts. She has already seen it and loves it, but does not know that it will eventually be a scarf and will be for her. She loves playing the piano so this is very appropriate for her. I can't wait to finish it and then to see her face when she pulls it out of the box!!

Dyed yarn with kool aid and food coloring. The green one is with food coloring and the purple and variegated are from kool aid. I can't even tell you which flavor because at our table we were kind of mixing things up and using eachother's cups of color, but I am very happy with them. I think this will be a fun thing to do with the kids this summer.

The Kumihimo that I was talking about yesterday. This is the disk that we use to make the braids. The bobbins hold some of the yarn that we dyed with one of them combined with a sparkly thread. The braids are made by moving the threads in a pattern as you go around the disk. It sounds complicated, but it really isn't. It's quite relaxing and is something that my almost 6 year old daughter and I do in the afternoons sometimes. It is really nice to just sit next to her and work on it.

The back of the disk with the braid coming out. So cool and amazing how this process works!

A close up of the braid. At first I really didn't think my colors of yarn would go together, but I decided to just "go for it" and I really do like it. When this one is done I think I will add a clasp and give it to DD who has been helping with it as a bracelet. I see much more of this in my future (if I can tear myself away from my knitting needles - they seem to occupy most of my so called "free time")!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Taking a break

I have been quiet for awhile, but knitting is still crazily going on. The most fun thing I have done in the past few weeks is go to a "Knit-a-Way" in carmel that was organized by Hollis at Full Thread Ahead. It was the single most relaxing thing that I have done in many years!! The fun started on a Friday night with a potluck in the conference room at the hotel we were staying at. What a turn out of food!! Everything was delicious.

After dinner, Hollis showed us how to dye yarn with kool aid and food coloring. What a fun time! I had no idea that this was so much fun. We all wound up with hands of very vibrant colors and every single person there (20 in all) wound up with yarn that was a different color, but no less pretty. Some of the ladies didn't like their colors (I happened to like them all) and so they over dyed and got even different colors. So cool. After all this dyeing, I realized that I would not be able to recreate the three colors that I had - I was so enamored of the process that I was envisioning scarves, blankets, and whole sweaters done in my own dyed yarn that I totally forgot that you really have to dye a lot of yarn for a big project. I have always respected and revered the hand dyed yarn out there and the people who create this yarn, but I now have even more respect and am truly awed by them!!! How do they do it??? Lots of yarn all in the same colorway. My own dyeing experience gave "colorway" a whole new meaning!!! More yarn dyeing is definitely in my future and I know that Hollis will be more than willing to help me as I traverse that path - plus I loved the yarn she included in our goodie bags to dye - it was DK Jewels and is so soft even after the dyeing.

The next morning we learned how to do Shadow knitting. We could either choose a double helix or piano keys. Since my oldest daughter loves playing the piano, I chose the piano keys. It took a little while to understand the directions, but I finally got it and love the outcome - I will need to get some more of the yarn so I can make a scarf from this pattern for my daughter for Christmas!

We had lunch at a great little place in Carmel and then walked over to a yarn store called "Knitting by the Sea". It was a really nice little yarn store - the owner was nice and the yarns were pretty. I wound up getting some truly pretty ribbon yarn to make a stole/scarf - the kids keep asking me what it is. is too wide to be a scarf and too narrow to be a true stole. I will post pictures of everything written about here hopefully later today or tomorrow morning and you can be the judge :o) I love it and will wear it out with my hubby to dinner after I convince my in-laws that they want to spend quality time in the evening with all 5 of the cuties!

The next thing we learned was short rows - three different ways done in very different manners all achieving the same thing. Really cool. On the front of my swatch there is not much difference, but on the back the difference is truly huge. I have my favorite method of doing the process which does NOT coincide with my favorite outcome. I will need to practice the method that I like the out come the most so I can be better at it. I think the Lizard Ridge blanket needs to come out of hiding so I have the oppportunity for lots and lots of practice!!

Sunday morning we learned how to do Kumihimo braiding - I have always wanted to learn this art - and we used our yarn that we dyed on Friday. What a blast. It is not as hard as it looks and I am truly hooked. I came home and showed all the kids (except the youngest) how to do it and they are hooked also. I need to get some more discs so we all can do it together. Although, if I don't, my kumihimo braids will get done rather quickly with everyone working on them. Hmmm....maybe they don't need their own!

The weekend, from my point of view was the perfect balance between relaxation and instruction. I was so refreshed and centered by the time I left - it was so great. Sometimes the whirlwind of life with the activities and chores that 5 kids brings to the mix leaves me drained. This weekend was really something I needed and showed me that I need to take time out for me. I will be spending more time doing what I like doing - Knitting with the ladies at Full Thread Ahead. Mondays they have a knit night and I am hoping to be there at least 2 times a month. That I believe is a realistic goal.

The weekend was, however, not so relaxing for my husband. Even though I had lined up friends to get the kids to soccer games and my in-laws practically lived with him to help him with all the meals and taking care of them, he was exhausted!! I think he is almost recovered now. Hopefully by the time the next Knit-a-way happens he will have forgotten how much it takes to get the kids where they need to be, with the gear that they need, well fed and clothed :o)
Sorry for the lack of pictures of the exciting weekend. I had my camera with me but didn't bring it out because I forgot. I do however have pictures of the things that I came home with and will post those tomorrow.

Meanwhile I have finished a couple of things. First it the "Squared up Throw". This is so soft and cuddly, everyone loves it. The kids like to bundle up in it and after they go to bed it is my turn to use it. I was not sure it would be warm, but it really is. It is warm, soft and light. The perfect blanket for the evenings now that they are getting a little chillier - we have not turned our heat on and will hold off as long as possible.

Another dish cloth.
Actually, two of them. One in regular dishcloth cotton and the other in size 10 crochet cotton. I really like the little needles and little yarn, but they are not so useful :o) so I make the larger ones for gifts.