Wednesday, December 31, 2008

An Inventory of Finished Objects 2008 edition

Knitting:
(1) Knit Washcloth--sugar and cream--Mountains and Molehills pattern
(2) Baby A's Blankie squares--Tahki Cotton Classic--Mitered Blanket/Mason Dixon
(3) Knit Washcloth--sugar and cream--Round Dishcloth Pattern
(4) Knit Washcloth--sugar and cream--Octogonal Swirl pattern
(5) Baby Bolero--Encore Colorspun Worsted--Baby Bolero(One Skein)
(6) Jaywalker socks--RRFW Aspen sock--Jaywalker
(7) Trekking is for Necking scarf--Trekking XXL--TifK pattern(Nipperknits)
(8) Basic Socks--Opal--Classic Beginnings Socks for the Family(Wymans)
(9) Bella's Fingerless Gloves--Knit Picks Swish--Stitch-n-Snitch
(10) Rage's Lapis socks--STR Lightweight--Classic Beginnings Socks for the Family(Wymans)
(11) Horcrux Socks--Jojoland Melody--Six Sox Knitalong
(12) Winter Hat--Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sport--Knitters Handy Book of Patterns(Budd)
(13) Felted Backpack--Lamb's Pride Bulky--Bags, a Knitter's Dozen
(15) 40+ Barn Raising Squares--various sock yarns--Knitalong

Stitching:
(1) QS Swimming with Dolphins(HAED/Tate)--page 5

Reading:
(1) Dream Chaser(Kenyon)
(2) Twilight(Meyer)--reread
(3) New Moon(Meyer)--reread
(4) Dark Needs at Night's Edge(Cole)
(5) Dark Desires After Dark(Cole)
(6) Blood Noir(Hamilton)
(7) What I Learned from Knitting. . .whether I wanted to or not(McPhee)
(8) Dark Lover(Ward)
(9) Lover Eternal(Ward)
(10) Breaking Dawn(Meyer)
(11) Acheron(Kenyon)
(12) Lover Awakened(Ward)
(13) Lover Revealed(Ward)
(14) Eat-Clean Diet(Reno)
(15) Eat-Clean Diet Cookbook(Reno)
(16) Eat-Clean Diet for Family and Kids(Reno)
(17) Lover Unbound(Ward)
(18) Lover Enshrined(Ward)
(19) Glass Houses(Caine)
(20) The Dead Girls' Dance(Caine)
(21) Midnight Alley(Caine)
(22) Feast of Fools(Caine)
(23) It Itches!(Habit)
(24) One Silent Night(Kenyon)
(25) Vampire Diaries: The Awakening(Smith)--reread
(26) Vampire Diaries: The Struggle(Smith)--reread
(27) Vampire Diaries: The Fury(Smith)--reread
(28) Vampire Diaries: Dark Reunion(Smith)--reread
(29) Twilight(Meyer)--reread, again
(30) Dark Lover(Ward)--reread

Barn Raising--2008

The final group of squares for the year. This project isn't finished but it's about halfway there :)

These five squares I finished randomly since I last posted about the blanket.

Here's the big picture:


Happy New Year everyone!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Goals for 2008--Revisited

Taken from my January 1, 2008 post:

Knitting:
**Log all stash onto Ravelry--NOPE, honestly, it gets very boring and tedious doing that.
**Finish all outstanding WIPs--no, I really need to work on that one.

Stitching:
**Finish HAED QS Swimming with Dolphins(Tate)--no but I did finish a page
**Finish, at least, 2 pages on HAED I Love Thee(Seed)--I finished 1.5 pages
**Start and finish HAED "K"(Fenech)--started didn't finish
**Work on Provence Sampler(Lavender and Lace) during HAEDless SAL weekends--I did until I got disqualified in the fall I believe

Reading:
**12 books/average out to one new book per month(excludes rereads)--Oh YES, I read a lot for me this year(you'll have to see tomorrow's post)

Monday, December 29, 2008

Year in Review 2008

I did this last year and it was more "knitting-centric". This year I've altered it to include just about everything I've been up to this year.

1. your best FO of the year:
Honestly, my Bella's fingerless gloves. I use them all the time.

2. best FO of the year made by a blog you link to:
The Big Red Barn Raising Blanket--love the color and I love the reason behind it(I even made four squares in it).


3. best yarn you tried:
Dream in Color Smooshy--love the colors and the yarn

4. best new(to me) book/mag/pattern of 2008:

Book: The Black Dagger Brotherhood series(which I plan on rereading soon), Knitalong(love that book--it was huge inspiration this year), The Gentle Art of Domesticity

Magazine: Artful Blogging, Clean Eating, Oxygen

Pattern:
Mandala Shawl (on Ravelry)
Hedwig Owl Cowl (on Ravelry)

5. best new technique or gadget you tried in 2008:
You know, I'm pretty stumped on this one. I didn't try any new knitting techniques or gadgets this year--at least not that I can think of.

Cross stitching wise, I did start a couple of HAED pieces without gridding(flying without a net so to speak).

Exercise wise--I tried yoga and yoga blocks and I liked both :)


6. top 5 inspirations--what five things inspired you the most over the past year?
**JR Ward, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Kresley Cole, and Stephenie Meyer--they are my paranormal romance writing heroes. I love their books.
**Artful Blogging, Cottage Living--both of those magazines are so inspiring to me
**Ink Circles and Heaven and Earth Designs--they always inspire my stitching
**Cathe Friedrich--my DVD personal trainer
**Oxygen Magazine and Clean Eating(the books and the magazine)--these inspire me to try and make myself better.

7. designer who most amazed & inspired you throughout the year:
**Ink Circles--for stitching
**Chic Knits--for knitting

8. Challenges for 2009--what's next for you and your blog?
I've decided not to make "resolutions" in 2009 but rather give myself "challenges" throughout the year.

The first challenge will be a year long one regarding my mind/body. It will consist of changes in diet, challenges in my workout routines, and some introspection. Suffice it to say there will be lots of sweat, reading, thinking, and journaling(some offline/some online).

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Fabulous Felted Child's Backpack


Stats:
Pattern: Fabulous Felted Backpack from Bags: A Knitters Dozen.
Yarn: Lamb's Pride Bulky in Victorian Pink

I have actually had the knitting and felting done for a couple of weeks, but it took me forever to get around to sewing the strap to the bag. This is the second one of these I have made and a lesson that I have learned is that, at least for our washing machine, one felting is enough. Both of the backpacks I have made I felted twice and that seems to lose just enough definition. It is kind of a toss up because I think that one felting would keep stitch definition but two felting makes it sturdier.

This will probably be my last project of the year--unless I finish Rage's hat in the next few days.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Cookies

On the 23rd, we spent the evening decorating cut-out cookies. The kiddos love doing that. Here's what we came up with:

This is my favorite new cookie cutter. We bought it on our Disney trip and I've been waiting until now to use it. I love that it is a Mickey head and that it makes HUGE cookies.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!




You Are a Tree



You love every part of the holidays, down to the candy canes and stockings. And you're goofy enough to put a Christmas tree ornament on your tree!



I do actually have a couple of Christmas tree ornaments on my tree ;)

Friday, December 19, 2008

One Down, One to Go


Diva's winter hat is done.
It's Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sport in Bittersweet, size 4 needles.
The pattern is from Ann Budd's Knitters Handy Book of Patterns

Now onto Rage's hat.
It's Cascade 220 Heathers in orange, size 8 needles.
Same pattern.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Crazy Week is Coming to a Close

And the icing on the cake is knitting time with the crew. I'll be cooking up a storm tomorrow.

We just got back from Diva's choir concert and boy did that bring back memories of my time in band. It was a lot of fun once I got past the stench wafting our way. There was this person sitting behind us who must smoke at least a pack a day because this person absolutely reeked of cigarettes. Do smokers realize that the smoke smell sticks on them all the time? Their skin, their clothes, everything? I tried not to breathe through my nose the whole time(which I'm sure was really attractive) but I still got a good whiff at various points during the concert. I guess the saving grace was that the concert was only an hour long.

I'm off to bed. I'll put up come cookie pictures when we're done with them this weekend :)

Oh, and I got 95% of my gift wrapping done. That is a huge undertaking and I'm usually doing it late into the night on Christmas Eve so I'm thrilled with myself right now.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Crazy Week in Progress

This is a crazy week here at Casa KiP.

Monday--I volunteered in my kiddos school library--I love it there, I'm a book girl.

Tuesday--Jury Duty--ugh--what a waste of time. I know it's my civic duty and all.

Wednesday--finish last minute shopping stuff before kiddos are off for break and Diva has dress rehearsal for her choir concert.

Thursday--finish last minute shopping(it's Diva and Rage's last day of school until 2009) and Diva's Choir Concert(the FINAL winter concert thank goodness).

Friday--Cooking--cookies and knitting goodies :)

Saturday--babysitting for neighbors

That's just the "extras" there is also everything I normally do during the week. I'm going to need a break after this week ;)

Monday, December 15, 2008

I want to Carreaux.

I want this pattern. I can't wait until it comes up for sale on the Ink Circles site. I think it would look stunning in DMC 115.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sweater Quiz




You Are an Argyle Sweater



You are contemplative, brainy, and serious.

You don't take much lightly - life is too important for that.



You are a very determined person. You don't let anything stand in your way.

You think out your actions and act deliberately. You don't waste time, money, or resources.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Resolutions--Early Thoughts

I'm thinking more along the line of "challenges" this year rather than actual resolutions. Mostly having to do with my health(mental and physical). I may add in some having to do with knitting and stitching but not for a while.

So, anyone out there reflecting on this year and looking towards the next?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Cookie Time


It's getting to be that time. . .Christmas cookie prep time. My favorite cookies are cut outs; they are the only ones I make. I've taken my annual inventory today and next week will be cookie prep week. Two days for two batches and one day for frosting/decorating. It's my last dessert hurrah for the year, so I'm going to make it a yummy one.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I got nothin'

Today I am too tired and too cranky to have anything of value to say(but this should still count as a post in my December posting quest).

I'm going to bed :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Snow

Snow--at least 6 inches of it--not enough to close schools but enough to make driving this morning a challenge. I drop Diva and Rage off at school and on days like this they usually let the kiddos line up inside. Well, not this morning. They wanted them to line up outside. Diva has no problem with this--she loves to be out in the snow--and I can trust her not to make a break for it. Rage would have no problem with it either BUT since I have to stay with him until he goes inside I have a BIG problem with it. I did the whole "freeze your A$$ off outside" thing during my K-12 experience and the day I got my diploma I vowed to NEVER stand out in the cold again--which is what I told the admin who insisted to me more than once that the kiddos were supposed to line up outside.

The only plus I have seen with Colorado snow is that it is very powdery so at least it's easy to shovel. When I was growing up near Buffahole(I mean Buffalo), I hated shoveling. The snow weighed a TON and took forever to get off the driveway and the car. Plus it drifted which made the shoveling all the more rewarding.

After shoveling this morning, I went inside and got lost in a reread of Twilight. Spending the morning with vampires makes me forget the nastiness outside :)

Monday, December 08, 2008

Saturday at the Mansion

Diva had her choir debut at the HR Mansion on Saturday, so while she was warming up I wandered around and got a few pictures.

Here is one of the lamps that lights the veranda. Since the house is over 100 years old I was thinking that these must have been lit with gas or oil at some point?


These two are of the mansion itself--there is actually about 1/3 of it I didn't get into these pictures because of the position of the sun and my options for places to stand while taking the picture. This. house. was. HUGE.




They were also giving hayrides and this is the team that took us around the property. Two lovely Percherons(and for size reference--Rage was almost as tall as one of their legs).

Sunday, December 07, 2008

The Christmas Survey

My sisters and I emailed this to each other so I thought I'd post my answers here. If you do it let me know, I'd love to see your answers :)

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags?
Wrapping paper. If I had an infinite amount of time I'd love to do really fancy wrapping with all my presents--you know with lots of ribbon. In a moment of insanity I have even thought about knitting "ribbon"--like I-cord or something more intricate.

2. Real tree or artificial?
Artificial--I can't even keep a plant alive. A Christmas tree in our house would become a fire hazard in record time.

3. When do you put up the tree?
The day after Thanksgiving.

4. When do you take the tree down?
New Year's Day.

5. Do you like eggnog?
Yes, or at least I used to. I have not had it in ages. Now my big treat is the occasional eggnog latte.

6. Favorite gift received as a child?
My Breyer horses. For many years all I would ask for were Breyer horses. I still have them(at my parent's house). My absolute favorite was the Black Stallion. We are trying to figure out how to get them out here--they would be a nightmare to ship because they are fairly delicate.


7. Hardest person to buy for?
My husband.


8. Easiest person to buy for?
Diva and Rage.

9. Do you have a nativity scene?
Yes, it sits up high on our mantle so Diva and Rage don't take off with various farm animals and baby Jesus.

10. Mail or email Christmas cards?
Mail, but as of the last couple of years I have been really bad about getting any Christmas cards out and this year will be especially difficult as I have NO idea where I put my address book.

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received?
I should probably not answer this question, but my husband is the king of bad gifts a tradition dating back to our dating days. We've known each other for almost 25 years and I have had 2 Christmas gifts that showed any type of forethought(both after we were married thank goodness).

12. Favorite Christmas movie?
Elf.

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas?
November.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present?
No.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas?
Cut out Christmas cookies.

16. Lights on the tree?
Lots of white lights--lots, and lots, and lots. If I could get a tree made entirely of lights I would do it.

17. Favorite Christmas song?
Carol of the Bells.

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home?
Stay home--way too hard to travel with kiddos at Christmas time.

19. Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer?
Yes, is there anyone that can't?

20. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning?
Christmas morning.

21. Most annoying thing about this time of the year?
Traffic, it gets worse and worse at the malls and grocery stores the closer you get to Christmas.

22. Favorite ornament theme or color?
My tree right now is covered almost entirely with Hallmark ornaments. I have been collecting them since 1994; they all have special meaning to us so it's fun to get them out each year.

I also have a dream of getting a second tree and covering it completely in hand made ornaments.

23. What do you want for Christmas this year?
Nothing really. I'd like to get the will power to lose the rest of the weight I have to lose and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

24. Angel on the tree top or a star?
This year we have a star. Usually I put a large ribbon bow on top of the tree. I'd really love to have an ornament finial up there next year.

25. Favorite Christmas dinner?
Well, it used to be sushi(when we lived in Hawaii) but now I don't really have a "favorite" Christmas dinner. I usually make filet Mignon with rice and veggies. Nothing too fancy.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Winter



I saw this when I was picking up Rage the other day and it reminded me of a Christmas card.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Happy Birthday!


Happy Birthday, Little Rage!

Mommy loves her best buddy :)

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Twilight

I bet you thought I'd be talking about the movie again--well you'd be incorrect.

I bought the soundtrack the other day and, unlike the movie, I loved it! It's a great mixture of mellow and rockin' tunes.

My personal favorites, so far, are:
Supermassive Black Hole--this song just plain rocks
Full Moon--this one is an odd one because it goes completely against everything I usually listen to
Leave Out All the Rest--not surprising since I have 3 Linkin Park CDs
Go All the Way(Into the Twilight)--Perry Farrell, who knew he'd still be cool. I loved Jane's Addiction. I'm actually listening to this one as I type this, love it!

So, even if you really disliked the movie the soundtrack is worth a listen.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Hats and Mitts--part 1

I need to get some mittens and hats made for Diva and Rage. Diva's hat is on the needles right now. Diva chose some Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sport in the Bittersweet colorway.

I'm on the homestretch with this hat then it will be on to Rage's Road Cone Orange hat.

********************

Last night we went over to our neighbor's to watch the unrated version of Step Brothers. That movie is hysterical and all the of the deleted scenes and the gag reel are well worth the price of the two disc DVD. John C. Riley's character, Dale, reminds me WAY too much of my own son, Rage.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

National Blog Posting Month--December Edition

NaBloPoMo for short. Did you know they did this every month and not just in November? I didn't but I'm going to give it a shot this month.



This month's theme is Thanks!; I am certain that almost all my posts this month will not follow theme.

But today I can say thanks to myself for getting done with 85% of my Christmas shopping in November and getting most of the Christmas decorations up. I hate waiting until December to get shopping done. Now if I could only find my address book I could get Christmas cards done :)

Monday, December 01, 2008

November Wrap Up/December Goals

December Goals:

Knitting:
**finish gifty knitting

Stitching:
**work on something

Weight loss/exercise:
**hold steady weight wise
**log into Peertrainer at least every other day
**keep a log of every BLT(bite, lick, taste) in an effort to stop the bleeding on the weight gain front
**try for four sixty minute workouts per week

Reading:
**I may reread either Harry Potter or Twilight

November Goals:

Knitting:
**finish the Horcrux/Socktober socks--Yes
**maybe finish a square or two--started one square
**gifty knitting--finished one gift/started two others

Stitching:
**chip away at the two pages I want to finish on I Love Thee--no stitching this month

Other:
**lose, at least, the 2 pounds I gained in October--nope and not only that I gained 2 more--ugh
**see if I meet my 60 in 60 goal this time(round two if you're counting)--nope and I'm saving the next round to begin in January
**finish my 4th Nanowrimo Novel--no, because I never really felt "it" with this one(like I said in a previous post). This is the first time I haven't finished Nano and I KNOW that it will bother enough that I'll probably try and double my word count next year.)