Showing posts with label Knitting. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Knitting. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Roses with Other Names

In this case, I knit three roses using different yarns and dissimilar centers.  But they all looked pretty much like red roses, even if their names were changed to fit their purposes.

Here is the last of the four roses knit, Miss Priss.  It was knitted with 1/4 inch grosgrain ribbon.  It used about 15 yards of polyester grosgrain.  Disadvantages of grosgrain ribbon was that it was too stiff to easily handle, causing problems in pulling through loops and resulting in cramping hands, and the back was not flat.  Advice: use a lighter weight ribbon, and flatten down ribbon before sewing it to make a backing. It has a good heft to it.  A found silk covered button was sewn into its middle.

This rose I wore yesterday on a black mock turtleneck pullover, giving a bit of color to the outfit.  The name Miss Priss seems to fit this rose.

Below is another rose, we'll call her "Libby's Sunday Rose" for use on a hat brim.  Libby was the reluctant model.  It was knit from two strands of fingering weight wool yarn, without a middle button. It gives a bit of "Je suis belle et ça ne demande aucun." Translated it means "I'm beautiful and it requires no effort." And it required no effort on the part of Libby other than to hold still.


Then there is another red rose, "Two Tones Floozy" that is my favorite.  It was knit from worsted wool, with the inner petal knit in a darker, warmer reddish blue yarn.

Two Tone Floozy might get knit again in contrasting colors of yellow for a summer scarf.

The pattern for the three roses shown is the same pattern: Knitted Flower by Absolute Knits.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Closing in on Thanksgiving

Yesterday at the manor, almost 200 residents and family members were served a traditional Thanksgiving dinner.  It seemed to come off without a hitch, and everyone was in good humor.  Julie even had the opportunity to play with a tiny puppy brought in by a teenaged family member.  The puppy was less than two pounds, named Bentley.

 
Ed, Food Manager


There were two seating times, and Gene and Julie and I ate during the later time.  We were seated with Louise and her daughter Linda, and it was almost like any other weekday lunch, except my usual soup was not packed and reheated, and it was a tasty and festive holiday lunch. Activity Director Cindy made place cards and pretty table decorations.

Marianne made some delicious artisan bread last week and forwarded the recipe that you can pick up here.  Another loaf of bread that I made over the weekend was also pretty darn delicious, but it called for half a cup of olive oil, so it was more calorific. That recipe can be found here. Both recipes are delicious and easy to make.

Nephew Jeremy and his family are driving up from Georgetown, Texas this week.  I will try to get some old fashioned Quaker Oats Vanishing Cookies made for snacking, along with a few loaves of the no-knead breads.  We will be having our Thursday noon meal at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic parish along with a few others sharing in a Thanksgiving potluck. Jeremy and Martha and Evan and Edie will be staying at a bed and breakfast in Montrose this week, but we plan on getting lots of visiting in while they are here in Colorado.

Remember the St. Brigid cross that my friend Sharon was on the lookout for while she was in Ireland over the summer?  I put all the crosses, including St. Brigid's, on a wall mount for display. The red makes me happy! The cross on the right is made from olive wood and was crafted in Bethlehem.  The cross on the bottom left is from the youth group fund raiser as they are collecting money to go to an alternative Spring Break in El Salvador

And then, after two weeks without posting, I feel compelled to update knitting news.  I am making this free headband pattern as my hair is thinning and a cover-up can't be beat, especially when it is cold outside.  I have made a couple of knit flowers that are fun and look pretty on the headband.  That flower pattern is here.


Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 4, 2016

A Skylight, A Recipe for Rice Pudding, Carol's Thoughts on Knitting

Husband disapproves of blog posts that have more than one topical area as he thinks writing should be "on topic." When he reads this post, it will be understood that he again thinks I've gone a ramblin'.

Getting on with it, here is a picture snapped yesterday of one of the Tile Meister maestros performing his job of setting in a skylight in our relatively dark kitchen area; he had to go up twelve feet from the top of the ceiling through an attic area and onto the roof to get the job done.  Yay for him and great that we now have God's own natural light coming into our work area. 



Today's work in this new sunlight should be completed by 10 AM at the latest, to include this recipe (rice pudding with oranges) and this recipe (pumpkin snack cake).  I must return containers once filled with tasty, very much appreciated foods supplied by friends (apple and pumpkin pie and homemade chicken soup), so why not go ahead and make some foods that my tummy can handle as well? Brilliant. (oh, and no sleep last night because of steroids and I forgot about that insomnia issue until it was too late to take a sleeping pill). Not Brilliant. Latest bone scan this week showed progression of lesions on ribs and spine, uptake of dye inside the skull.



Treat yourself to some Trick or Treat Candy; I'll turn on the coffee!

Thoughts on Knitting (Guest writer is Carol Weber from New York). Carol wrote this a few weeks ago, and it has such a fall flair, an autumnal air, that I wanted to share it.  Carol went to the now Very Famous Rhinebeck Sheep and Wool Festival in September.  At this event, many knitters spend more time and probably even more angst creating just the "right" sweater to wear to this weekend event.  (I would love to just go there and take pictures of the knitters showing their creations.) But I digress, and on with Carol's notes:
Hi Nancy, I wish I could have packaged up today to send it to you, to cheer you through these dark hours. My two knitting friends and I were at the sheep and wool festival. A heavy duty day of yarn shopping, punctuated by some muffins and cider, with a bright blue October sky above. The best part was meeting so many fiber folk, most of them dressed in their beautiful Rhinebeck sweaters that have been months in the making. 
...I was so excited to read that Mary Lou was going to be there at Rhinebeck that I went straight to her table when we arrived. And right next to her were Ann and Kay from Mason Dixon Knitting! I felt like a complete groupie. I got to tell them in person that it was their first book that got me back into knitting after a long dry spell. Blog land is certainly an amazing place!
And in a prior email... 
The best part of the day for me was meeting Mary Lou Egan of Yarnerinas. She's the only person I know who's actually met Jean Miles,; we had a nice chat. She is delightful. Mary Lou and her friends have a new book out, Drop Dead Easy Knits. I bought us each a copy.

Carol, please know I have looked through the book many times, and like I told you, the striped socks on size 5 needles are in the queue!

This is my newest screen saver, and I wish I had the nerve to pull it out when someone starts whining about ANYTHING.  Maybe I just will do that.  A few manor staff and residents will like this, Julie and Louise and April and Cindy for sure.  I'll record their reactions when I go in this morning.  I have missed being at the manor more than a few days this week due to health issues due to radiation of the pelvis. Enough said.
Chin up, dahlings!  

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Free Time on My Hands: Promenade Shawl; Piper's Journey Shawl

Yesterday, I said I would be knitting.  And yes, I did just that.  

Almost finished with the Promenade Shawl.



And the (3rd, count it) Piper's Journey Shawl is well on its way to completion.  That pretty pink yarn is from Ginny, who dyed it with pokeberries!  I am joining in with her YarnAlong.




All this knitting is happening because Julie is still in Denver in the hospital.

The news last night, set to the background of Julie crying over the cell, was that the manor is reluctant to take her back as her "home" because she is on an IV.  But the IV is only temporary, we hope, and she should be on oral medications shortly.  Does this mean Julie will need to find another nursing home placement?  Will another nursing home here in the home town take her on, or will there be further reluctance because of her complications?  (She does require lots of assistance in turning in bed, electronic lifting into her motorized wheelchair, bathing, help with her two ostomy care bags, daily wound care, etc.)  Need I go into further detail?

So instead of biting my nails, I have turned to reading (again, PomPom, I am into the Tuesday readings with help from the Paraclete) and knitting, and even getting a haircut yesterday and planning on coffee with friends this morning.

And Julie stews in Denver at hospital.  Pray hard, friends, for answers to her placement here in Grand Junction.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Into 2016

Onward and upwards.  Yesterday was quiet on the home front and our activities included an 8 AM Mass to start off the new year, followed by a Mexican food lunch at a quick food place that uses fresh ingredients.  My all time favorite salad is Cafe Rio's sweet pork salad with a cilantro and lime dressing.  HERE is a link for this recipe, a copy-cat one, but it looks like the original.

Julie was quarantined to her room yesterday with the noro virus. She had her first symptoms while visiting us on Thursday, and had to be immediately taken back to the Manor (her nursing facility). A quick phone call a moment ago says the entire Manor is now under quarantine, so I will not be visiting again today. All the halls are closed and patients must stay in their rooms. She said she felt pretty lousy yesterday, so hope by today she is improving.  We are so thankful the Manor is on top of this crazy bug and that she is well cared for.

"Look for the presence of God in your life," Pope Francis says on New Year's (LINK HERE)  It is a good message, and I will be on the lookout for His presence.  Take a look at the homily if you have a chance.  Gene and I are enjoying our new church home at IHM. This is my new app for my phone: The Pope

January 3-17 are the dates our parish will host homeless men overnight, providing food and shelter.  This is the link for the sponsoring shelter.  I am looking at all recipes to make inexpensive but nutritious trail mix, stored in give-away zip lock bags.  Please email or comment on this post if you have a recipe your would recommend that would make 25 or so cups of mix.  Here are a few I found: link

OK, today's update must include a new knit I made from left-over yarns.  It is the Interrupted Striped Cowl by Gretchen Tracy.


It is my first 2016 knit project, made to go with my new Eddie Bauer flannel shirt:

Although colors are not accurate on my monitor screen, the colors really DO coordinate!

Friday, December 11, 2015

Dog Biscuits

Julie suggested that The Manor House give dog biscuits to our local no-kill animal shelter for a Christmas gift.

Here is the recipe I forwarded to the activity director where today some of the residents will make these treats.  I found my old dog bone cookie cutter we will use, tucked away in a plastic bag that has housed cutters since time began; the plastic looks a bit worse for wear but the old cutter is still sharp. My thick notebook of recipes is kept mostly for nostalgic purposes, but it came in handy on this occasion.


 Cindy, Activity Director at the Manor, in Christmas attire!
Charley rolling dough

Nancy and Connie tasting the dough

 Julie's Big Idea to make dog biscuits!



Can you believe these herbs are still alive in mid December?  They are watered faithfully, and they keep on giving.


Last evening I finished 2/3 of the knitting required to make up the Promenade Shawl.  It was begun in July, so I have been fairly slow in the needle process. Each row must have a thousand stitches, and there are too many rows to count.  Add those stitches to changing colors, and it is mind boggling for knitting.

On another note, here is a present for Julie I have saved up for Christmas: another When In Scotland shawl.



Hoping your weekend is a good one!

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Cardioversion, A Birthday, A Shawl

What do you call a "busy week?"  For just the husband and myself, the week now ending could be called filled with activity, if you consider numerous visits to various physicians and a birthday lunch a bit out of the ordinary.

Yesterday was the husband's birthday; he spent half the morning in the hospital being zapped by electricity through his heart. Actual terminology is cardioversion; he has been in atrial fibrillation for quite a while now, so that is an effort to get the heart beating correctly. This morning he said his chest felt like someone had punched him hard, poor guy. But yesterday the nurse ordered him a full breakfast and asked kitchen staff for a piece of cake since it was his birthday. Cake was not to be found, but the tray came with a cookie that I wrapped up and took back home for his dessert celebration.

Julie came home two days ago, again in the big white bus, for a lunch with relatives. She comes every Thursday now and seems to enjoy being away from the nursing home.  She says she feels like a released inmate when she travels away from there.  I hope she is kidding, I think she is kidding, but I understand.  Julie gets good care there and the staff is conscientious.  I now think of the nurses and activity directors as friends.  The on site social worker even gifts Julie various Word Chum apparel and is very fond of Julie. Julie is easy to like. 

And next week Julie has two appointments with physicians away from the Manor, so we will both take the big white bus to see a GI doc and a surgeon.  Julie will likely have an operation fairly soon to take away some diseased colon, but enough of that.

Frost was on the lawn this morning and it is below freezing during the night hours.  An owl was heard hooting around 6 AM, but he has not appeared in our owl house yet.  Gene says it sounds like a Great Horned Owl, not like the screech owl that lived in our back yard last winter.  We keep close watch on the doggies when they are outside because critters, raccoons and foxes, are coming down from the mountains in search of food.


On the knitting front, I am almost finished with another shawl for Julie.  This one I am keeping back as a Christmas present, along with a purchased flannel lounger in exactly the same colors. Notice Libby is modeling the shawl and not seeming very interested in the process.

About time to get out and to the favorite Mexican food place to get Julie and me some take-out for lunch, then on to the Manor.  I get enough for us so that I can eat with her not only on Saturdays, but also on Sunday after church.  Would that be called left over left overs?  The other lunches during the week, I usually take soup and eat with her in the Garden Room at the Manor while she has a food tray served.

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

One Stitch at a Time

It just occurred to me that I have not yet shown knitting progress on a kit I purchased soon after Julie and I returned to Colorado in May.

That month of May in South Carolina was a complete wash in terms of knitting. Even if there had been time to sit down and knit, there was not a whit of concentration left in my frazzled mind.  So just as well that my hands had a break from the needles.

During June, I finished one of The Yarn Harlot books.  A story she wrote stuck with me when she talked about a woman in her circle of friends who took on the daunting task of beginning to knit a blanket, a huge one.  The woman in the story decided to begin this project while in the midst of several personal crises, including severe depression and the break up of her marriage.  McFee, aka The Yarn Harlot, went on to write that this woman, stitch by stitch, finished one row and then another, day by day, week by week. Lo and behold, after a year, the blanket was completed.  Somehow, the working of the project, the clearing of the mind, that entire process of making a blanket required a different sort of concentration of efforts.  And it resulted in more than just a finished blanket. With the ending of that enormous knitting effort, her depression had lifted and she had made important decisions, including one to end her marriage.  What determination she had.

Back to my tie-in and identification with the woman who undertook that blanket project.  No, I am not leaving my husband. But I did decide to order from a Norwegian designer who had put together kits for the most determined of knitters.  Those who had knit up this daunting project took months to complete it, according to their notes on Ravelry.  So I took the mental plunge back in June and bought the kit, knowing I would eventually complete it because I must finish what I start... a compulsion.  It may take a while to complete, but each completed stitch will work toward good mental health.

So this is the Promenade Shawl now on the needles, started in June:

But then I got distracted with other projects, like knitting up Julie's acrylic shawl just in time for cool weather.


She wore it yesterday on her Wednesday visit to our house.  Her aide helped to choose the dress from her closet to match the shawl, and got her ready.  Julie was all smiles when Dennis delivered her to our curb.  Gene made guacamole and tacos at her request.



Joining in with Ginny and her Yarn Along!

Julie and I took a leisurely wheel over to the hospice restaurant again this week. After thinking about the Ezra book and praying about the situation, it went much better than our first outing there. Thank you all for your kind comments about the Very Busy woman, by the way.  (And no, I have not heard from Her again.)

Here we are in the sun before our lunch.  A kind gentleman snagged from a nearby bench was the photographer.



Recipes tried this week: Beer Bread, and Rosemary Bread, thanks to Stephanie who blogs here.  Ya'll have a good weekend!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Another Simple Knit Shawl

Fall begins tomorrow, so we hear. Pope Francis arrives in the US today.

And another, yes another, shawl is in the works. Yarn, courtesy of Knit Picks, all acrylic, which goes against my yarn snobbery instinct for wool.  But it can't be beat for wash-ability.  





Julie chose her colors, neither picture showing up quite as the eye sees the pinks and magenta. The pattern is knitting up quickly.

When I show any knitting project to some of the women residents where Julie lives, they almost always comment on attached knitting markers.  It seems that the little markers catch their eye as much as the colors.  Or perhaps it is merely a conversation starter.

Hobby Lobby had some cute labels in a 9" x 24" panel.  You are supposed to cut them out and attach to clothing, after writing your name on the inside with permanent ink.  Clever.


Our roses have been prolific this year.  And they continue to bloom now.  I picked up several inexpensive glass bottles, vases, for give away rose containers, and it is again time to buy more since those roses just will not give up production.  The cup holders in the car make perfect little containers for the blooms in the little brightly colored glass holders.  The rose leaves are almost half eaten by some critters, so I probably have not been a good steward of feeding them fertilizer and bug killer.  Will rectify that this morning before the clouds roll in.

Pope Francis comes to the US today.  Interesting reads about the pontiff here and here and here (re-branding the faith?).  Gene and I are attending RCIA classes on Tuesday evenings, and there has been some good discussion there.
(almost life-like)

Friday, June 5, 2015

Sharing Goodness

Indulge me in the sharing of the goodness I found and re-found today in searching the web.  Here are web sites, readily accessed in the future for perhaps Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus (NPH) or recipes or music or books (if I remember this particular post).
Julie is at Colorado Canyons Hospital, back from South Carolina last week, and is faring well.  Thank you for all your prayers and good wishes.  We hope for a Grand Junction placement soon.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Watermelon Socks?

Have you heard of picture yarn?  Well, Abi Grasso from Colorado Springs dyes it up in all kinds of colors with graphics that make pictures when knit.  She has an Etsy shop here.

Example: my watermelon socks


A neat trick, and the pictures are either closer together or conversely, further apart, given the size needles you use for knitting.  At one time, Abi dyed Santa Claus yarn, but it is not available this time of year.

This watermelon yarn was knit on size 1 needles and I was oh, so careful, to make the stripes match up because that is my OCD (my little tiny problem) that comes out in my knitting.

Yesterday I spent the afternoon with Elise working on a new website for The Grand Junction Brush and Palette Club.  We put together pictures but we need many more for greater punch to show off this club.  It looks like only my photos are on there now, because others have not yet sent theirs in.  This is where you can see the Brush and Palette new website.  

Next week's program on April 16 at the Artist's Haven in Grand Junction will be a not-to-miss activity with Jim Brock.

He says:
My work is accomplished for its meditative possibilities. It is reflective of my interest in contemplative art that explores nature´s dualities, serendipitous qualities, and inherent spiritual mystery. 
There are three things that my work is teaching me – what to paint and what not to paint, when to start and when to stop, and when to have at it alone and when to ask for help – all dual, serendipitous, and spiritual.
Jim Brock 

Monday, March 23, 2015

Spring Luck

As I have previously said, Jeans Knitting is one of the first reads of the morning when sitting in my chair, or actually my husband's chair, after I get up and turn on the fire and have coffee in hand.  She blogs daily and wakes me up with her perspective on her coming day.  Jean makes lists of things that she needs to accomplish that day. And updates me, for of course she is writing to me from Edinburgh, telling in her quaint ways of what on her yesterday's list was accomplished and what yet needs to be finished from her uncompleted list.  Most days she gives herself  a 100 percent rating, but a few times she laments that she was just too tired to finish one or two of her self assigned tasks.

Seems I follow Jean closely because I think of her as my one-generation-older friend who is keeping it together in her own way.  So maybe a list is the thing to keep in the forefront of my mind as I try to age with grace and wisdom.

So back to Jean's list, or my list, for the day.  Half of her day seems to involve taking care that her octogenarian, somewhat cranky husband, as she gets his lunch and keeps his writing files in order. That part of my day, compared with hers, does not exist, since my husband is in a reverse role with his own mother and ensuring she is fed and watered,  Although she still lives independently, except for not driving and having severe macular degeneration and not being able to read much or change the time on the clock or figure out how to order on Amazon.  But he needs no care whatsoever, other than being listened to, and occasional affectionate words and kisses.

Then Jean's list goes on to her knitting.  My, what a knitter she is, even to the point of designing her own laces and looking into software to aid in her motif designs.

My knitting, sorely neglected as of late, consists of this pair of socks on the needles, using picture yarn.  Google it and you will see clever yarns that have been mathematically designed to create pictures within the pattern, no matter the gauge you are using.  Here is a picture of my watermelon socks.  Notice those little black dots of color that play into the reds for the seeds within.



these are The Perfect Fit Socks, Abi Grasso Etsy Shop yarn


On the cooking front, two recipes I made this weekend are absolutely the best: carrot cake and hush puppies.

No pictures, but the carrot cake was found here, originally published by Southern Living. It has the usual suspects in the batter of grated carrots, crushed pineapple, with a little surprise of coconut.  We liked it, the neighbors liked it and I am serving it to friends today at coffee and tomorrow (frozen, but thawed) to the pinocle card group.

I was looking for an old fashioned sweet hush puppy like my grandmother used to make, but times have changed and what I found was from Paul Prudhomme, found here. We had fried trout with the couture hush puppies. Those puppies have onion, green onion tops, red pepper and only one egg, but after setting for a couple of hours in the fridge, the juices from the vegetables incorporate themselves into the flour and cornmeal and give an excellent texture. Beware these pups are fried, and I used only a film of grease, but they soaked up every bit of that canola oil. Not low calorie, but delicious. (And I did not find one recipe that called for just cornmeal, flour, egg and sugar, like Mom used to make.)

Saturday, I thought I was buying plain ol' johnny jump-ups for a splash of blue color on the patio while waiting for anything to rear its pretty head from the cold soil.  When I got home, I looked at the label more clearly after planting it and was happily surprised to learn I had purchased Rock Cress Axcent Lilac plants, a perennial.  What luck!  I needed new perennials.


The husband reminded me of what Garrison Keillor said:

“Some luck lies in not getting what you thought you wanted but getting what you have, which once you have it you may be smart enough to see is what you would have wanted had you known. ” 
― Garrison KeillorLake Wobegon U.S.A.

If you are following Angela in A Pause in Lent, I have written a piece on Path to Writing concerning what I heard yesterday in church since we are just two weeks away from Easter.  (It is under revision, in case you click on it and do not see it.)

Have a great week, and haste ye back in a few days to see the laundry line bowls in progress, thanks to the tip from Elizabeth, seen here when she writes about Washing-Tale Lines.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Fair Isle Knit Socks and More

Phew.  Those fair isle socks (only two yarn colors per row, knit intermittently while holding the opposing color in the back of the knitting) are complete.


What with all the self striping sock yarns now available, I doubt if anyone other than an experienced knitter could tell that the technique used in whipping up these socks was indeed "fair isle" knitting.

Alas, one of the women from the Shetland Fair Isle Knitting Guild (link here for information and pictures) (link here for more pictures) (and also here for a knitting workshop blog post) would be able to differentiate and critique this knitting.  They could right away spot my errors.


But I continue working on the technique and do have a bit of prior fair isle knitting under my belt:

(Our Mercy)
Wolf in Sheep's Clothing kit by Sandra Manson and Kate Davies, using all nine shades of 2 ply Shetland Supreme wool yarns from various types of sheep on Shetland) .. kit available here

Now I have the bright idea of trying to create a portion of this picture in fair isle knitting, along with reference help from the Book of Fair Isle Knitting by Alice Starmore. 


Giovanni Battista di Jacopo (Italian Mannerist painter, 1494–1540), known as Rosso Fiorentino (meaning the Red Florentine in Italian) Angel with Lute Madonna dello Spedalingo

If I can graph this out correctly ensuring the shading on the cherub, it should be a year long knitting project taking a lot of patience and many shades of yarn. Pinterest has some graphing aides, along with Starmore's book.  There are very few Renaissance needlepoint kits with angels, and none that I could unearth on the internet linking angels, Renaissance and knitting.  If you know of any such kits, including needlepoint, please leave me a comment as it would save lots of time if I could find a kit readily available.

Linking with Ginny's Yarn Along this Wednesday.