Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Scott's Stashbuster Spiral Socks

Brother Scott was going to go home with a new pair of socks at the conclusion of his visit but I just didn't have the sock knitting mojo. They're done now, in fact, I have another pair of Stashbusters on the needles!
Pattern:Stashbuster Spirals
Yarn: Patons Kroy Socks FX - Cadet colors
          Patons Kroy Socks Jacquards - Denim
          Patns Kroy Ragg Shade - Grey Brown Mari
Needles: US Size 1

Monday, July 30, 2012

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

Earlier this spring I ran across this blog photo and fell in love with the entryway...
I thought I could create something similar this summer. During one of our recent trips to California we went to the once a month flea market in Alameda. I saw an antique cabinet being loaded off a truck and immediately bought it knowing the cabinet would be the center to the arrangement. The California Dreamin' Gurl indulged me and promised to ship the cabinet to Montana. A few plates were my mom's but I've been looking for plates in the local thrift shops as well as during our trip to NorDakPurl's in June.
 I'm happy with the result!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Cameron's "early" Christmas sweater 2012

While The Pirate was visiting we had a nice discussion about his Christmas sweaters. Something is coming between him and every single one of his Christmas sweaters - the Pirate Sweater.  He loves the pattern, the fit, the hood the yarn, everything about his Pirate Sweater. I explained I LOVE knitting him sweaters but I also want them to be worn.

We came to a mutual decision to knit another Pirate Sweater, Pirate Sweater II is dieing.  He would like to have it for the new school year. (Last winter he explained to his mom that he didn't want to wear any other sweater to school because it would call attention to him - he's known for his Pirate Sweater.)

We went to the yarn shop and I said he could choose any yarn  he wanted. The Pirate chose a tweed (like Pirate Sweater I and II) but in ruby not green. I was proud The Pirate was stretching out of his comfort zone! It wasn't until we got home that his sister shared The Pirate choose ruby because there was only one skein of the green yarn - thank you Wild Purls!

Pattern: Pirate Sweater III, Wonderful Wallaby by Carol A. Anderson
Size: 12
Yarn: Plymouth Yarn Encore Worsted
Colorway: Ruby Tweed
Amount: 4 skeins (and a bit of ecru)
Needle Size: US size 6 and 8

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Country life

This summer has been a hot and dry. Several days ago we had a quarter of an inch of rain and the next morning there were dozens of dragonflies zooming around the front yard. Our house is "high and dry" so this was an unusual site.

This morning when doing "the rounds" I saw a three inch dragonfly on the window screen...
I've been watching chokecherries ripen along the road near our house for the last couple of weeks. The heat is creating a bountiful crop - I called the NorDakPurlGurl to see if she was interested in making some syrup or jam.
Eight pounds later, she'll be making jam after our next visit!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

A lazy summer day

Feeling at home in our backyard.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Second 2012 Christmas Sweater

Christmas Sweater knitting has been slow going this summer, I  just finished my second of six...
Pattern: Tiny Top Down #608 by Cabin Fever (with modifications)
Yarn: Cascade 220
Colorway: Mallard and Cordovan
Amount: 2 skeins of each
Needle Size: US Size 5 and 6

The basic sweater line is from the Cabin Fever pattern but I added cuffs at the wrists and bottom.
I love this sweater for my youngest Grandkiddo! Earlier I had started this sweater for Nephew Joe. At first, I was concerned about the contrast between the two colors. I realized it wasn't the two color combinations bothering me but the age appropriateness of the colors for an 8th grader. In my school world it just wasn't going to work - I am almost certain it would have turned into an "Auntie" sweater onlypulled out when I appeared....

Thursday, July 12, 2012

A great visit with the brothers

Last weekend the brothers breezed into town for a quick visit. We enjoyed our adventures, playing games, catching up on family happenings, and meals together.
All four cousins enjoyed their visit but the two little ones created quite a friendship.
 Our time together quickly came to an end and we sadly had to say good bye until the next visit!
Sam. Cameron, Joe, and Chloe

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Who do you think your are - visiting the HooDoos

Family from out of state have been visiting Montana this week. Hubby and I thought it might be a fun adventure for all of us to visit some ancient Native American pictographs. These pictographs are a well kept secret we discovered about twenty years ago. 

In past posts I've written about Hubby and how he never gets lost. He can find his way through unfamiliar wilderness and has even retraced steps days later to find lost keys or arrows. Yesterday it proved the same with with the pictographs. He hadn't visited them for over five years. Although he said he wasn't sure he could remember, he led us right to the area.
It was an amazing trip, the contrast in landscape and beautiful clear sky made this one of the most beautiful trips to the site I've ever taken!
Everyone enjoyed the trip even though the temperature was in the 90's. A late night before the trip and a hot hike proved to much for The Pirate and he gladly took a two hour nap upon our return.
 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

A big thanks to our fireman!

As a kid the fourth was my favorite holiday. Going to my aunt's house on the beach, all the pop and potato chips we wanted, great food, a bonfire and fireworks in the evening - don't forget the marshmallows!

But this year, Hubby worked on the forth, the grandkiddos are half Brit, Chloe is off sugar and dairy products, and there was a ban on fireworks, so I really didn't plan anything for the holiday. Yes, I did feel guilty. When Hubby called and said the boys at the station were planning a little barbecue in the afternoon I jumped right on it! Grandpa made it a little extra special for The Pirate by giving him a tour and letting him spray the fire hose.....
 
Well timed, the firemen were then called to put a grass fire out, impressing The Pirate with the lights and sirens as they left.

With smoke in the air and fire retardant planes flying overhead the public got the message, it proved to be a very quiet holiday!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Romance is in the air

One thing, of many, I love about summer is being able to relax and look for the little joys in life. This morning when doing my morning check out the front picture window I spotted these two Northern Flickers (woodpeckers). They were at the birdbath about fifteen minutes doing a funny little bob and weave dance every two or three minutes.

Fire Season 2012

While we were in North Dakota the fire season began with a vengeance. Without a doubt Colorado is the hotspot of the nation, but Montana's fire season is heating up. There are fires just outside the state capital, another 30 miles to the north of us, and to the southeast there is a large fire on the reservation. With smoke in the air comes beautiful sunsets:
 
I took a few shots and then decided to put the finishing touches on my Rainbow Brite socks (a project isn't done until it's photographed!)
Pattern: LaLa's No sock, sock pattern, and Stashbuster Spirals (both free patterns on ravelry)
Yarn: Dyer Straits, Lorna's Laces
Amount: bits of three different sock yarns
Needle size: US size 1
A bit of Christmas in hundred degree weather!

After taking a few photos on the deck I looked up and saw a beautiful full moon. A brilliantly red sunset and to the east a clear moon rise.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

The last two weeks have been filled with Grandchildren! The California Dreamin' crew came up two weekends ago and we've been having fun ever since...we tried out the new "swimmin' hole", The Oasis, in the Heights. stopped by the library and borrowed a whopping 50 books (more than half are now  read) and learned to play Ticket To Ride before heading out to North Dakota to meet up with The Tiger and Sadie Lou Who. Hubby decided to go along on this trip and shortly after starting I'm sure he wished he'd stayed home. He recently bought himself a new pickup and we weren't 20 miles down the road before we'd picked this up...
 
Less than 250 miles on the truck spedometer - the Montana roads are killers!

The Pirate and Chloe-A-Little-Bit were great travelers - thanks to the library...
and once they saw their cousins it was like they had never been apart! The NorDak cousins immediately began giggling and running through the house showing us everything. First on the agenda, swimming in the new pool!
Many happy mornings, afternoons and evenings were spent in the pool. Another hit was the hammock...
Uncle Troy put the tent up in the backyard thinking they would want to sleep there. I was certain that it was a great idea in theory but would not actually happen - I was so wrong! They loved spending time there - afternoons they played cards or drew pictures, in the evenings the boys played armymen under the awning.

Their first night they were kept up well after bedtime with the noise of fireworks. At one point The Tiger was so frustrated his scream of "Shut those fireworks off!" could be heard from inside the house.
After years of visiting North Dakota I just learned about the Fort Steward Wagon train. We were welcomed into camp the first night and given a tour of the wagon train, as well as a demonstration of how to make rope. The kiddos want to go next year. For a week of reliving the Little House of the Prairie adventures it isn't very expensive. I think it just might be a go! There will be sewing this winter getting ready for the pioneer wear but truly sounds like a memorable adventure!