Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Last Projects

Well, here is a snow tree. I know that is pretty silly, but living in TX, and having grown up and then lived alot of my adult life in frigid and snowfilled climates, I do miss snow. Of course, this year many folks, all over the USA, are saying, "You can have it! It is only December and we have had more than our share." Well, we probably won't get any snow that sticks around for more than a day, and the most we have had, since living in TX is 5 inches at a time. But, since we don't have snow plows and most don't own a snow shovel or even know what one is, 5 inches can pretty well stop the community from functioning. So..., I decided to turn a small 3 foot Christmas tree into a snow tree. The snowflakes are hand crocheted by my daughter Rebekah and me. Then, of course, there is a snowman on the top. As for lights, there is a strand of lighthouse lights. You see, I have a fetish for lighthouses too. :)

In front of the tree stands a grand ginger bread boy, that is hand knitted and he has peppermint buttons and a great scarf. He is one of my last Christmas projects. Also, there is a red mitten, size 2-4 on the tree, and the beginnings of the second. The mittens will be done by Christmas day.

The stocking is hand knit and felted, by my mom's work. Isn't it beautiful??

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

More Snowmen

Sometimes, do you wonder if cell phones are a plus or a distraction? I do. However, today they were a plus for me. It was the Christmas party for my spinning group. I didn't get to go, because I needed to stay home and nurse a sore leg. :( However, Laurie called me from the party and I was able to take part in the gift exchange! It was so much fun, to almost be there. Laurie and I both have the same service provider for our phones, ATT and so, we can talk without using any minutes. It was such fun to be there over the phone and get to participate in the Chinese Auction. Thanks Laurie and everyone of the Texas Twisters for making me laugh today!!

Here are some more of my snowmen. The one above with the red hat and scarf was made by my friend Deborah. Then I made the one behind it with the blue hat. If you look closely you will see a snowman in a blue canning jar. There is also fake snow in there, with the snowman. That one was done by Cathy.
The bottom picture includes a moose. I know, I know, it is not a snowman, but it came all the way from Alaska to live at my house, so he likes being with the snowmen. Reminds him of home. Then there is a snowman with a star. My mom thought, since I live in the Lone Star State, I needed to have a snowman holding a star, so she gave him to me. Good idea, Mom!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Weather and Slippers

Here are some slippers that I finished making last week. They are done in the freeform crochet technique. You use different yarns and start by crocheting a small piece. Then you crochet other small pieces onto the original piece with different yarns. You crochet in a way that you are able to cover the space you wish to cover. When finished I sewed these to the mesh top of the slippers.

Today we are under a winter weather watch. Yep, that's what we are doing. Watching the weather. Yesterday, was 79F for the high, which is totally unusual for us. Then today, the high was about 31. It was 30 when I arrived home. Needless to say, we had a cold front blow in over the night. I thought in honor of our weather I would show you a portion of my snowman collection. These are on my mantel. Two of them are handmade. The one all the way to the left, I had knitted and then felted. The third from the left I had received in a Christmas gift exchange. Also, like my Shepherd Sheep?? I like sheep too and collect them. These are great ones.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Santa Comes To The UPS Store

In my other life, I work at a The UPS Store. My boss is my husband, which is really nice. He is a good boss. Since it is getting really busy for us now, Santa came to help us out today. This is such a fun time of year, that we called the North Pole and asked Santa to come and help us. He said, "Ho, ho, ho, sure. I can be there on Dec 13. Ho, ho, ho!" He really came and he helped us too.

He directed traffic.

Helped the UPS driver to get boxes out of the store.

Santa even took the time to pose with the staff for a photo!
Thanks to Santa for making our day more fun and putting smiles on our customers faces! (Well, the cookies and pizza helped too)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Don't Faint

After not writing too much in the last couple of months, I am writing 2x in one day! I have been tagged for meme by my daughter Rebekah.

Here are the directions: Just go to your 6th photo folder on your computer (or external hard drive, or memory card - pick one!), post the 6th photo, and hope you can remember the details to share them. Then tag 5 others.

Well, when you do this, you don't know what you will get. I did go to my 6th folder and opened it, and found many folders in there. So, I opened the first folder and took the 6th picture. Years and years ago, when I was starting my spinning wheel supply business, my younger daughter, Anna, drew my logo. Here it is. But, you know, I have never named these two. They are the nameless duo. Any suggestions out there???? They are girls. I still use this logo and it is copyrighted.
I am supposed to nominate some blogs. Hmmm. How about my mom's work , fibergeekery, serenity-farms , born2bcrafty.

Blue Gloves

These fingerless gloves are one of my most recent projects. They were lot of fun to make. Well, they would've been alot more fun, had I followed the directions. I decided to make two at a time on one circular needle. It started out just fine and then I got to the blue part. I know, I know, I was only 1/2" into the project and having issues. Well, the issues started, when I put them onto the long needle to work them in the magic loop fashion and the directions read, "you will be working these gloves inside out, so you can knit them instead of purl them." If you can see the the detail, the purl side is the public side. If I didn't knit them inside out, every round would've been purled. Now, because there is the button closure, there is a definite left glove and right glove. AND because I am doing two at a time in the magic loop, I wasn't working one glove and following directions for that glove, but trying to interpret different directions for 2 at a time. Then to make matters worse, the directions were written as such: on needle one do this, on needle two do this and on needle three do this. Well, after a while of sitting and staring at these gloves and the directions you would've thought I would pull them off the needle and put them on the three needles and knit with the 4th. Any sane and smart person would've done that. But, no, I was determined, at this point I was going to conquer. When I finally figured out which was the right glove and which was the left glove, I labeled them, literally, using paper and safety pins and went to work. They were quick to make and came out lovely. They are a gift for my SIL's niece.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Happy Belated Thanksgiving!

I hope that all of you have had a great holiday weekend. Sorry I missed wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving on here. I have had a whirlwind of the last 2 weeks. My Mom has come to visit from NY. We have had a very nice visit, with shopping etc as part of the visit.

Last Saturday, the 22, we met up with my daughters for breakfast at a local Cracker Barrel Restaurant and then went to an antique mall. We had a great time there and I found a great basket, to use for another knitting project, and a bunny door stop. You can see them in the picture.

If you are interested in yarn, that is Berroco Linen Jeans hanging there. I received 7 skeins as a barter for knitting some shop samples for Delightful Hands yarn shop in Celina, TX.

Now, my big news, I have been awarded the Marie Antoinette award from my mom's work .

Listed below are the rules for the award.
1. Please put the logo on your blog.
2. Place a link to the person from whom you received the award.
3. Nominate at least 7 or more blogs.
4. Put the links of those blogs on your blog.
5. Leave a message on their blogs to tell them.

So, now I need to nominate some of my crafty friends, who have blogs.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

New Knitting Projects

I have been busy creating again. This is one of my two patterns for a neck warmer. I wanted to have a fairly easy pattern, but one that is timeless. The stitch pattern will actually help to give an effect of elongating my, or anyone elses neck. The first time I knit it up, I used knitting needles that were too big and the thing just flopped all over the place. So, the second time I knit it, I used a smaller size needle and I really like how it drapes now! I also thought it would be a nice feature to be able to wear it upside down if someone had a v-neck coat, so I turned it upside down and I really like it that way too!
If you like this pattern, it is listed on my etsy site at www.terrificcreations.etsy.com . If you go out there and you cannot find it, that is because it was purchased. Watch my site and you will see it listed again.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Voting in Texas

We have a great college student working for us. He started working for us when he was a senior in high school. He is really a responsible person and very trustable employee. We are blessed.

Well, today he went to vote. You see we have what is called "early voting" in Texas. I'll explain it below. Back to the story. He was so excited to do his part, as a 19 year old. :) It was his first time to vote for president. He was so excited about voting, that the workers gave him 2 "I voted stickers" that he peeled off and put on his shirt. Someone at the store mentioned about the fact that he had voted. He proudly stood there and said, "Yep, I voted twice and they gave me a sticker for each time." The customer actually believed him and said, How did you do that? He came clean and said he was teasing, they had just given him two stickers. :)

When I left there this afternoon, he was still pulling that joke on others, but none were as gullible as the first one.

OK, so all of you non-Texans are wondering, "What is Early voting????" It started years ago and personally, I think it is a great idea. Starting 3 weeks before election day, our polls open. They open for limited hours during the next 2 weeks. Then they close for a week, while everything is re-done for election day. Then the polls open for election day on election day.

Having early voting gives those who work long hours, or travel for work, or travel for enjoyment, etc, to vote during those times. Also, it gives everyone else the chance to vote early. Therefore, we can go at our convenience, we don't wait in long lines on election day and you don't have to miss a class or work etc.

Oh, and absolutely no results are given on the voting calculations, until after the polls close on election night. So, no races are hampered in that respect.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

It's Felted

My Terrific Tote is finished. This makes such a great project bag, with a circle bottom that is flat.

I know that there is a controversy about knitting projects that are washed being called felted or fulled. A long time ago, I read in Interweave Knits magazine, that if you still see the stitch definition it should be called fulled and if you don't see the stitches it can be called felted. That author made a lot of sense to me. So, I am saying that the tote is felted. If you want it called fulled, that is OK with me, just know that the stitches don't show.

The Malabrigo yarn in this tote, felted up wonderfully and quickly! It was a joy to work with, like the Ashford Tekapo in the original ones that I did, when I was writing the pattern. The pattern for this tote can be found here. This is the link to where it is listed on my etsy site. If you happen to click on the link and the pattern is sold, email me and let me know. I can and will relist it for you.

We are still having gorgeous weather. We don't have a lot of gorgeous weather in TX, so when we do, I keep talking about it. :) Windows are open, it is fairly dry humidity wise, and a breeze is blowing in through the windows. Now tomorrow, is a different story. We are expecting a cold front, and so, the windows will probably close for a few days. The leaves may even start falling from the trees. Maybe I will see some fall colors, who knows.

I am in shock! I went to purchase gas today. I usually get it at Sam's Club. The price was $2.39. Wow! Who would've ever thought that the price would fall that much. I sure am glad it did. But, I do wonder how long it will last.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

A Knitting Project at Last!

I have been knitting lots, but haven't been very good about updating my blog. One project that I have been working on is my Terrific Tote pattern.
Sherry at Delightful Hands in Celina TX, has asked me to do this for a shop sample, so I said OK. She sent me some wonderful Malabrigo yarn and I went to work. After a couple of weeks, of knitting at night, while working during the day, here is the bag. I have it hanging on the dining room chair so that you can see the size of the thing. It really is an easy knit, and felts into a great size tote for your knitting.

Here we are with the felted and still wet, but drying look. Mind you this is a gorgeous purple color and the Malabrigo yarn felted up like a gem! My pattern was originally done with the Ashford Tekapo yarn, which felts up great too. But, I try to write versatile patterns, so you can use the yarn you can afford or find.

Life had changed for me a little bit. I am working outside the home about 25 hours a week. I am blessed to be able to do this and to still be able to go to my spinning group on Wednesdays. You know, when you have met with these gals for years and years, you become a support group for one another. I love meeting with them and sharing ideas and solving all of the world's problems. (or so we think we do anyway) :)

My garden is growing, even though we haven't had much rain. I did finally wise up and get a soaker hose for it. You know, it looks like a looooonnnnngggg black snake. ug. I have had some episodes this summer with a water moccasin, a copperhead and a rat snake. Nothing like living near a pond, in the woods in northern TX. It is a recipe for snakes. The great thing is that I didn't get bit, AND, I now know that I have what it takes to take charge and dispose of snakes. OH, the rat snake was allowed to live, once I was sure it wasn't a rattler. Heehee! It did try to tell me, by not rattling its tail, but I was stubborn and spent hours doing an internet search. Needless to say, I was relieved to find out he just want rodents, and he can have all he wants as long as he leaves me alone!

Oh yea, back to the garden. The zucchini plants have flowers and the beets are growing quickly. The chives, broccoli, cauliflower and pumpkin are all still growing. I am hoping they can produce their vegetables before our first freeze. I have never had a fall garden before. Actually, I have really never had a successful garden in TX before. Just getting the plants to stay alive is a great success for me.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Shawl Patterns

Every once in a while, I have an idea for a pattern and the idea is an absolute challenge to complete. One of these ideas, is the Take 2 Shawl pattern. I started out making it a challenge to myself to see what I could do with about 128 yards of handspun bamboo yarn. I didn't take very good notes during this process, because, well I don't know why, I just didn't. But, when my spinning friends saw the shawl in person, they were sooooo excited with the design. So, I said, "Oh, sure, no problem. I will type it up." Hahaha. :)
When I started typing, I realized that I had taken horrible notes and basically started over again. The group was patient and waited nicely, as I struggled through the mess of notes. Finally, I had the pattern ready to go and off it went to my test knitters, while I made a third one. The test knitters had great suggestions for me, which I really do appreciate. However, one of the suggestions that kept coming up was, we need a longer one. So, finally, I listened to that suggestion(after I had heard it about 100 times) and Take 2 now has a longer version added to the pattern.

Two of my spinner friends, Kate and Cindy, offered to test knit this pattern. One of the test knits, done by Kate, is pictured here. Her shawl is the one with the pink shirt. The other shawl, Cindy's, isn't on here. I hope to get a picture of Cindy's and put it up. I have done the others that you see.
This bottom picture is the longer version of the Take 2.
The shorter version of the Take 2 uses 160 yards of worsted weight yarn and the longer version uses 436 yards. Just so you know.
This pattern can be found at
By the way, thanks
Rebekah, for helping me with the directions for placing a link on here.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Where Oh, Where has Joanne been???

I have been absent from my blog for a month. Wow! It seems like yesterday that the Ravelympics were in full swing and I was posting finished projects. My second project, a felted purse, was done on time, but not listed in time. So, I didn't get to the podium with that project. That is OK. The project is done.

Here we are in north Texas 2 days after Ike hit the Galveston, Houston area. What a mess they have down there, our hearts, thoughts and prayers are with those folks. We do have friends down there and we actually heard from one today. Willy's neighbor let him use his generator to charge his cell phone a little bit. Then Willy had to drive to the top of a tall bridge, near his home, to be able to get reception on the cell phone. Then he was able to use it, seems the cell phone towers have been affected too. They are OK, none of their windows broke, they have no electricity and won't for about 2 or 3 weeks. They live on the southwest side of Houston in a suburb there.
We had 3/4 of an inch of rain in our rain gauge, which isn't very much. We had strong winds. But, we are OK. We are very grateful to God, that He spared us, because we were in line to get that storm too. We were all ready to be hit by this monstrous storm. I had food, that didn't need refrigeration or cooking etc, in the house. Candles, batteries, etc are in supply too.

Soooo, you ask, where have I been? Well, one of the projects that has kept me away from here is a garden. I finally decided to start a garden. It actually has three sections. I put it in a small fenced in area on the south side of the house. The picture below shows the seedlings that are in the first section. Do you like the bricks? Nice touch? Well, in digging, I found them under about 2 inches of dirt. Apparently, the previous owner didn't like them and covered them with dirt. So, I pulled them up and out and used them. On the left side of the garden, next to the fence are saultillo tile pieces. They used to be the flooring for the main floor of the house. You guessed it, the previous owner ripped them all up and threw them into the yard. I found them while digging too. We have piles around the yarn, where we put these broken tiles, when we find them. Some day we may be able to do some artsy type walkway or patio with them. Or, we will just throw them away. I did make a step near the gate of the garden with some of the pieces and it looks cute. Well, here's the garden photo. Oh, yeah, we can have a fall harvest down here, if you time it right and we don't get an early freeze.
I have been knitting, and creating things too. Watch my etsy panel on the side bar and you will see these items coming up there.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Mish-Mash Shawl

Remember my stash??? Well, I have 2 very small holes on the floor and 3 shawls are done. Here are pictures of 2 of them. These shawls were a lot of fun to make. I will be making more.

However, these two shawls have enabled me to be awarded my medal for the Ravelympics and my time on the Podium. Here is my award from Ravelry. The dog in the award is a picture of the owners' dog on Ravelry. He is the mascot, so to speak.
Now to finish the Bag and Stroke Backstroke.

Monday, August 11, 2008


What you ask is the Ravelympics?? Well, Ravelry hosts thousands of knitters and crocheters and give us all a place to post our finished items and works in progress, amongst other things. There are groups to sign up in and you can post to others around the world about your hobbies and interests.

Soooooo... with the Olympics at hand they have an Olympic Competition of sorts. It is called Ravelympics. I joined the group. What your goal is, is to cast on during the opening ceremonies and be done before or during the closing ceremonies. I joined team Texas, can you tell??

Then like an Olympic athlete, you take part in events.
For my events, I am in the Bag and Tote Backstroke and the Shawl Relay.(Cute, huh?)

I have started the Vintage Bubble Bag and here is the photo for it. The Shawl is started, but I don't have a picture of it yet. I will get it up in a day or two.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Stash Busted!

One of the topics that is discussed amongst knitters(and spinners) is your stash. Most of us keep it hidden in a closet or room, at least behind closed doors. That way your family cannot see that you have an addiction. :) You can get away with purchasing more and more and stuffing your boxes with more and more. You may even have to start jumping on top of your boxes to keep fitting it all in, but you will succeed. Of course, there are yarns that are too delicate to jump on, so those get displayed in a basket and you dream of using those, some day...........
When I moved, over a year ago, I had taken yarns to different places to give away. That way, I wouldn't have to admit to some of my stash. I still had several plastic boxes to move, though. It was amazing. I kept telling myself, "Oh, you don't have that much. You have to save it for making shawls." Some of it is fuzzy, some silky, some bumpy and lots of colors. The other day, I saw my friend Laurie's shawl and she shared with me how she did it. So, I decided it was a great idea. Home I went and dug out my boxes and then the sorting started. It is safe to say, that I have to walk over the yarn to move around the den. Heehee!
Luckily, I am blessed with a great husband, who came downstairs and laughed at all this. What he doesn't know, is that this is just some of the stash. Or maybe he does, he helped move it and come to think of it, he was the one who suggested I come clean and take pictures of this work of art on the floor. But, you know, he did call it a work of art. Hmmmmm. Maybe I should go and get some more work of arts?????
Well, not today.
The pictures are of the same stash, just from different angles. The top one, I am on the floor and the bottom one, I am on the step stool. I thought they looked like they were worshipping Crayon, the Kiwi Spinning wheel, that made me laugh.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

The Brown Paint is GONE!

I am pleased to introduce to you, the newly painted hallway. Many folks know that we moved into a fixer upper. It is a great house, with LOTS of potential, as my friend Liz pointed out. She was right too. It is with great excitement that I can say the brown paint is gone. Yippee!

Yes, in the top picture you are seeing in the background a 5 gallon bucket of paint. I know, it is just a hallway, but this color takes at least 3 coats
of paint to cover it up. So, we wanted to have enough. Below there are two
pictures of the after, one with the hall light on and one without it.

This is the entry, what you see when you open the front door. Over to the left is the railing in the picture above. Jeff, my fantastic remodeling husband, pulled out that panelling you are looking at
and put up wall board in its place. Then he textured the wall and painted it, using a great ragging technique. (I get to paint the fun parts, the plain walls and trim, heehee!)
He also, put in moulding on the ceiling and floor.
I am excited to see how wonderful it looks now.
Hope you like it too. When putting everything back decided to move the mirror.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

New Yarn

Well, I mentioned in my last post that I was able to go yarn shopping while in Austin. Here are some of my yarns. Five of the skeins are Noro Kureyon and the other skein is from Lorna's Laces. Not until I arrived home and arranged them for the picture did I crack up laughing, all are basically the same colorways. I purchased the Lorna's laces on a different day and at a different store than the Noro. The Lorna's laces skein is slated for a shoulder shawl and the balls of Noro are slated for felted purses.

Yesterday, I went out to Ravelry. For those that don't know, Ravelry is an internet place set up for knitters and crocheters. You have to join, which is super easy, and then they give you a place to post pictures of finished projects. Also, there are different groups set up, so you can click on your favorite group and see what folks are posting. Well, in reading around yesterday, I discovered that they are having a Ravelympics during the Beijing Olympics. So, I signed up. The idea is to start and finish a project(or more) during the Olympics time. One of the events that I decided to participate in is the Bag-n-Tote Backstroke. I will be knitting a felted bag using the Noro and some Ashford Tekapo. The other event that I am planning to participate in is The Shawl Relay. I will be knitting a shawl, for that one.

My Diamond shawl pattern is just about ready to be put up for sale. I am working on the final details now. I also have another shawl ready to go. When listed they will be on my etsy site.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Lake Travis

We had the honor to visit with family and friends this last weekend. Jeff's aunt and uncle live on Lake Travis near Austin TX. Judy is in the picture to the left. We drove down and visited them, and as always we had a wonderful time. The temps were making their highs at about 107F, but it didn't daunt us. We had fun. We went swimming in the lake, and the fish thought Jeff was bait and kept trying to eat him. Then we went for a boat ride on their SeaDoo, which we took to 32mph, so that I could ride faster on water than our daughter, Anna, has done. Heehee! I would've liked to go faster, but we decided to keep it at that speed. Here are some views from their deck on the back of their home. I was able to sit out there and KNIT! What a glorious view. When we arrived on Friday night, we went to the movies and saw The Dark Knight. It was good, although long, and a bit gruesome at times. (I closed my eyes at those parts) On Saturday, we went to a great kitchen store and then a yarn shop. I found some great yarn in there, but narrowed my purchases to a couple of skeins, for a shawl.
The picture that has the island and the brown thing in the front, is a picture of a brown dock/boat ramp. It is for sale! If anyone is curious, the folks selling it are asking $150,000. Yep, you are reading correctly. Anyone interested?

Monday, July 21, 2008


Well, here we go again. Bugs! Texas should be the Bug state, not the Lone Star State. Just kidding, but I think some folks might agree with me. Anyway, did you know, there are all kinds of grasshoppers? I remember as a child being so excited to see a grasshopper! They were so cool and they were green and looked great. Well, we have a grasshopper kingdom visiting our woods this year. It is the Post Oak Grasshopper Family. They like Post Oak Trees. The grasshoppers nest in the ground and climb the trees to eat the leaves. Apparently, they will move to another neighborhood next year. So, Texas A&M University said not to worry too much about the infestation. Guess what trees make up the woods around our home?? You guessed it!

Notice this guy is really colorful, so if you like bugs or have kids that like bugs, they will enjoy this picture. Me, I am not crazy about bugs anymore.

My daughter is doing a thankful list on her blog. I think that is a great idea, especially since I am inundated with bugs! I am going to start that too. I am thankful for duct tape. We have it wrapped around the trunks of 2 of our trees that hang over the pool and it is catching these grasshoppers and they have stopped falling into the pool. Making my pool cleaning job much easier. One day I watched as one of them thought they could jump 4 feet from one branch to another. Nope, he actually did a dive straight into the pool! Well, maybe he was trying out for the Olympics.

Oh, yes, I am still knitting. Some will put their knitting away in the summer. But, not me. I am working on a shawl pattern and doing another test knit for it. Two of my wonderful spinning friends, Kate and Cindy, are testing it too. Hopefully, I will be able to work out the rough patches of that pattern. For those waiting for the Diamond Pattern, it is still coming. I will post when I get it out on etsy.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Baby Shower

Well, my needles have been at work again this week. I am going to the Denton Spinners meeting this Sunday afternoon and we will be having a baby shower. Two of our members have brand new baby boys. In thinking about what to make for them, I thought about a teddy bear. I used to have a cute pattern, but couldn't find it. Who knows where I put the thing. I only have 1 filing cabinet with patterns in it. They are arranged in file folders, so I can find my patterns easily. ha.

Not this time. Couldn't find it anywhere. It'll turn up now, that I came up with my own pattern and made these adorable(I think) cute little bears. I used cotton yarn for them. To give you a size perspective, I have them next to a blue quart size canning jar.
On the weather side, it is hot. Today we have a breeze, at least.
I have planted a bunch of plants in pots this year. One of my plants is/was oregano. I don't know what I did to it, but one day it was fine and the next it was dead. : I know it isn't the heat, cause I had it in the ground at our other home and it grew and grew. It was in this pot last year, and made it through the summer. Oh, well. I will have to get some more. My spinach is doing wonderfully and it tastes good on sandwiches and in salads.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Crocheting Again

Well, after going blackberry picking, I decided a hat would be a good thing. I had worn a baseball type cap, a white one, as a matter of fact, with a smiley face on the front. Well, my thought pattern was, white=cool. First, that thought in Texas in June is just plain silly! Ha! Cool..... Well, so let's word it like this, white doesn't absorb the heat as black does, so when in the sun, white is cooler. So, I wore the white cap. It did help my face, but the problem I encountered was the white on the underside of the bill of the cap. It functioned as a REFLECTIVE shield! Reflecting all the sunlight into my face. I had sunglasses on, but still couldn't see very well. Since berries are small, I would remove the hat, look for ripe berries and then replace it, because I was staying cooler, even if I wasn't seeing very well.

Actually this project started before the berry picking, but I had put it away in a drawer, to work on some new designs. :) A UFO, UnFinished Object. The project started when one of my handspinning friends brought a pile of old magazines to spinning. I took one, it was probably printed in the late 1970's or early 80's. I found what I liked and cut the patterns out. Unfortunately, back then they didn't print the magazine name on the page with the picture and pattern, like they do now. I thought is was a cute hat. So, here it is.
In the magazine it was all one color, so I added the purple trim, hoping that I wouldn't have the reflective shield problem again. I also added the flower to it. I wear this hat when I am working on the pool, it really does help keep me cooler and I like that it goes down my neck, to protect back there as well.
I don't know if I will ever wear it out in public, since I really am not much of a hat person. But it is doing a great job in my yard. :)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Black Raspberries

Today I had a fun day. It is one of those days, that you may think to yourself, "Joanne you are nuts! Fun? It is 97F outside and you are wearing jeans, knee high PVC boots and a long sleeve shirt. Why on earth would you do that to yourself?" Well, cause the wild black berries are in season. So are the thorns, chiggers, snakes etc.........
Near the end of my morning walk, Athena came by driving by in her John Deere Gater and asked if I wanted to go check the berries and see if they were ripe enough to pick. We found a bunch that were ripe, so decided it would be worth it to start our picking. Besides, it was a little cloudy and as you know, clouds will hide the TX sun.

So we drove home and changed into the outfit I described and off we went to the fields on the edge of our neighborhood. We were manned with bug spray, buckets, water, clippers and gloves. We fought the stickers and thorns to harvest the wonderful berries. Since we had both taken clippers, we clipped back any branches that got in the way of our harvest. It did get pretty hot, and quickly too, once the sun came up over the trees and the clouds blew off somewhere, so we called it a day and came home.

I had enough berries to make this wonderful pie. :)
I used a new(to me) pie crust recipe from the Joy of Cooking cookbook. It actually uses part butter in the crust. Then I used the berry pie recipe that I found in there.
For those that love knitting and felting. The pie is sitting on a knitted and felted potholder, that was an experiment years ago, that I thought flopped. It was too long, but actually has been the best hot pad ever!
I am just waiting for the vanilla ice cream to make it home and we will slice into that pie.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Acton is Finished!

This past Saturday, we had a SHOW-N-TELL day at the UPS Store. It was a lot of fun. I set up a table of my for-sale items so that people could see what I do. Other mailbox customers in the store were able to come by and see what I had. It was our first one and we will try it again, to see if we can get more traffic. Several of my spinning friends attended, and set up tables with their for-sale items and then some other friends came and spun with me. We had a great time and as the sun came over the building and it became hot out, we packed up and left.
You can see my table in the top picture and my Ashford Traveller. I was spinning bamboo on Saturday, that I sell. It is a wonderful blue color. Hanging on the front of my table are some finished objects that I have listed on etsy. Then on the back of the table are kits for handknitting my patterns. The kits include a pattern that I wrote and the yarn to make it. Some of the yarn is handspun and some of it is Ashford Tekapo yarn.
The second picture is Acton. It is a Berroco pattern. I did find a couple of
errors in the pattern, but all in all I think the cardigan came out cute!
It is an adult size 34, cropped cardigan. Just right for summer to cover a tank top or spaghetti strap top, if you need a cover up for air conditioning.
You can see this top at Delightful Hands in Celina, TX, after Tuesday this week. Sherry carries the pattern and the yarn for the project too.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Delightful Hands

There is a great yarn shop in Celina TX. The name is Delightful Hands and the owner is Sherry. Besides having yarn Delightful Hands has a great selection of scrapbooking supplies, with lot of tables to work on your scrapbooks. They also carry several of my patterns for sale.
Last week, when I was at the shop knitting, I agreed to knit some samples for the shop. The first project that I have knitted is the Topsy Turvey Shawl. I used a Berroco yarn for it. AND, yes, that is me modeling the finished shawl.
The wall behind me used to be BROWN. It is absolutely gorgeous now, thanks to Jeff my hubby. He is still working on the toe moulding and don't even look at the carpet. That is another story. :)
Here is the back of the shawl.
This is Acton. Acton is a Berroco pattern using their Love It yarn. You are seeing the finished back and the fronts which are partly done. The fronts are now done and I am working on the sleeves. I will post a finished picture when it is done.
You will be able to see these items in person if you visit Delightful Hands in Celina TX, in a week or so.