Friday, March 31, 2017

A quilt for a baby boy

I finished the latest baby quilt last night, the "Rainy Days" quilt. I will think several times before using anything but white for trimming the blocks on quilts. (I'm such a newbie perhaps that is the only way a person is suppose to make them).  I had thought the puppy themed material would be perfect for a baby boy but I continue to find it difficult to find the perfect combination of prints for a boy. I'm not giving up and  eventually I'll find just the right combinations of fabrics to keep a baby boy warm.
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I love the pattern blocks of "Rainy Days" and the way the they play with your head - each block is square and the quilting is straight lines. This is a quilt I will make again.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Sparks flew on our trip to Freezeout Lake

After a week home from his last outing, Hubby was ready for another trip into the wild frontier.  The weekend weather was predicted to be sunny and warm and Hubby gave me time to make beef stew, chicken noodle soup and homemade yeast rolls. Even Denali was willing to go without to much protest.

The destination was Freezeout Lake in the northwest corner of the state. It's about a hundred miles from Glacier National Park. Twice a year, in October and March,  the snow geese use this area as a resting place when they are migrating either north or south. They stay three or four days before moving on to their final destination. It is reported there can be as many as 100,000 snow geese resting at one time, however, when we were there the estimate was approximately 10,000. The grain fields in the area provide the birds with food which they forage for several times each day.  When rested these birds depart on their final leg of the journey ending in Russia, Canada or the Hudson Bay.
On Monday, after taking over 1,600 photos (yes, this isn't a typo) Hubby decided he had enough and we should head for home.

Remember the old advertisements stating most accidents happen within 25 miles of your home?

Well, we were about 15 miles from home, on Airport Road, when all Hell broke loose. By the time we realized the trailer had blown a tire and were able to pull over to the side of the road, we were in big trouble! The airport and city fire departments, police and many kind bystanders came to our aid.
After some scary moments, the fire was put out but our little home away from home is a total loss.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

A quilt full of memories

I’ve been on a roll with the baby quilts!

Last week the weather in Big Sky Country wasn’t the greatest but Hubby wanted to take off for a few days to photograph wildlife in Yellowstone Park. I opted out, spending most of my time sitting in a camper, surrounded by snow to my knees, with an unhappy cat as a companion, wasn't my idea of a fun time. So I  kept the home fires burning and a cat happy.

Being able to eat what you want and do what you want, when you want every once in awhile is kind of fun for both of us. Hubby ate Vienna sausages and canned hash (WHAT??) and I ate veggie stirfry and rice (Mmm!).

It didn't take long for me to realized what I REALLY wanted to do was work on another quilt. I hadn't bought fabric for quilt number five yet and the roads were icy. So, I went downstairs to the box of leftover material and found some lovely bright bits with lots of memories. I'd saved scrapes from several sundresses I'd sewn for the granddaughters when they were just toddlers. - BINGO!
A modified Ballard Quilt. 

When Hubby arrived home on Sunday, he had many beautiful photos and I had a lovely quilt with dinner waiting. A win for both of us!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Birthday socks for SadieLou

Sadie really has a problem with socks. Most people putter around the house in their stocking feet during the day but Sadie may start the day with a pair on her feet but they are soon pealed off and you never know where they will be ditched around the house.

I'm hoping these socks will be different. They look just like her kitty, Charlotte, and I've knit them in sport sock length (Her favorite type socks.

Any way you look at them, they are the cats meow!

Pattern: YinYang Kitty Ankle Socks, Fish
Yarn:Knit Picks Stroll Tweed, Knit Picks Undyed Stroll
Colorway:  Marine Heather, Jo's Bliss
Amount: Way less than a skein each
Needle Size: US Size 1

I finished them in January but didn't want SadieLou to know about the socks until her birthday. She also has recently found Chai tea and so a jar is in the mix for her as well.

NEW Spicy Chai Tea  Recipe:

3 cups nonfat dry milk powder
1 1/2 cups sugar (half sugar substitute)
2 cup unsweetened instant tea
1 1/2 cup French vanilla powdered nondairy creamer
1 1/4 cup nondairy creamer
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/4 teaspoons ground cardamon
1 1/4 teaspoons ground cloves
1 1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon white pepper

Directions:
In a large bowl, combine the ingredients. In a blender, cover and process tea mixture in batches until powdery. Store in an airtight container in a cool dry place for up to 6 months.
To prepare chai tea: Place 3 Tablespoons of mix in a mug. Add hot water; stir until combined.

Yield: 32 servings (8 cups tea mix)

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Birthday Girls 2017!

How quickly the year has gone by, Sadie Lou and Denali Jane are another year older......

Denali had been sitting so pretty on the couch, Hubby went to get his camera. But when he got back she was sitting in his chair. In typical Hubby behavior he didn't disturb her....
 
Bengal pelts can change color for three or four years. I wanted to update her coloring on the blog.

 A big change from when she was born three years ago....

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

#3 of 22

March...Green...Gansey Pattern...
Yes...
 Happy Saint Patrick's Day!!

Pattern: Herringbone Gansey Sock by Tempe Croke
Yarn: Zwerger Garn Opal 4-fach/4 ply
Colorway: Grasgrun
Needle Size: US Size 1

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Baby quitls #2 and 3

I've enjoyed sewing two new quilts on my beloved sewing machine, Betty Singer.  When the first quilt was finished I realized there was almost enough material for second. Off to the fabric store I went making only a small purchase of fabric  - backing and binding. Soon it was back to Betty for another few days and the completion of that second quilt.

I continue to make use of the book I received as a gift for Christmas, Quilt As You Go, Made Easy although both of these quilts have been modified and are slightly different from any in the book.  I have two more "queued up" and I hope to get going on them soon.

Friday, March 10, 2017

#2 of 22

I was surprised at the fabric of these socks. While in the skein the yarn looked destined for a female member of the family but once the knitting began a was a very masculine feel and a  camo stripe became involved. So with a few slight adjustments the socks are now earmarked for a male member of the family!
Pattern: Vanilla Socks with a Fish Lips Kiss Heel
Yarn: Regia Arnie and Carlos Design Line
Colorway: Siljan
Needle Size: US Size 1

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Mosaic socks

With this cold, snowy winter we've been having I got a hankering to knit up a pair of mosaic socks. They are much warmer than normal handknit socks because of the denseness of the fabric caused by using two colors.  A pair of socks knit in mosaic are much more comfortable than a pair knit in stranded knitting - no loose pieces of yarn to get your tootsies caught in. Once you figure out the technique they aren't difficult to knit but it is necessary to have the chart nearby for reference at all times.

This particular mosaic pattern necessitated an adjustment in my normal stitch count. I knit an uneven amount of stitches on the front and back of the foot and then increased the number to an equal amount after knitting the heel so the pattern could be continued in the round.

A hand dyed sock blank was used for the background color. Blanks are unpredictable in color and this sock blank was no exception. In the end I still like the mismatched socks and will wear them often.

Pattern: Vanilla Sock whit a Fish Lip Kiss Heel, Mosaic Pattern from Barbara Walker's Mosaic Knitting
Yarn: Cascade Heritage Sock Yarn and Knit Picks Bare Stroll Sock Blank
Colorway: Denim Blue and hand Dyed yarn
Amount: less than a skein each colorway
Needle Size: US Size 1