Thursday, February 28, 2013

All Yummy


I "stole" Teresa's picture of the yarn yesterday for my laptop desktop so I could stare at it. So pretty. I confessed to her last night, and she promptly went and put the picture on her desktop too! What a bunch of yarn hos we all are. Ha-ha.

I'm a dish ho too.
We got the extra dishes we needed at another Target.
They are sitting pretty in my cabinet now.
Almost as good as a cupboard full of yarn, huh?

I made Kris' Thai Chicken Salad last night for dinner.
I replaced the carrots & edamame (carbs)
With red and green bell pepper.
We loved it.

I juiced my limes for the dressing in my little Oster electric juicer.
I love this little thing.

The vibrant green Cilantro-Lime dressing.
(I used Splenda instead of sugar)

I'm addicted to this Diet Frostie Root Beer.
I finally found some that uses Splenda instead of Aspertame.


It has to be really, really, icy cold to minimize the aftertaste of fake sugar.
Slurp-slurp...foamy root beer mustache good.

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So far, I have a free day today.
All caught up on work.
No errands to run.
I hope it stays that way so I can...
DO ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!
In my jammies all day.
Do you think I can?
Youbetcha.
Bye.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

She's a Hottie! Pattern Posted



The She's a Hottie! hot water bottle cover pattern is posted at the top of the page in the menu bar. If you find errors or have a problem, please let me know in the comments here. I'm about to post it on Ravelry in pdf format also. I couldn't find a way to post a pdf in the menu bar on Blogger.

New Stuff

 
Cover of a new crochet book by Nicki Trench
Love Nick Trench
She's the whole reason I bought this book.
Here's a peek of what's inside...




I want to make this dress. I now know what I'm going to make with that Eco Duo yarn. I think I'll need a couple more skeins though. This would be a comfortable little house dress. Not sure I'd wear it out in public, but who knows? I'm going to wait until I'm finished with the weight loss.



Overall, I like the book and I'm glad I have it.


An old WIP scrap blanket for the Captain that I've picked up again and added a few more squares to. I'm really into getting out those WIPs lately. I still have my Sampler blanket to finish too! I can't believe I put it down when I was so close to finishing it. It'll be done soon. I have at least one day of just sewing in ends because I wasn't good about doing it as I went.


The Angel Eyes has made a small difference in the discoloration around his eyes, but not enough for me to be impressed. I'm going to give it a while longer before I call it a dud. Maybe his hair grows very slowly or something. The bottle I bought is almost gone, and I'm undecided as to whether I'll buy another just yet, but I'm leaning towards buying one more bottle and making up my mind at the end of that one.


I got these new dishes yesterday, and I adore them.

Got them at Target. They only had four cups, bowls, and dinner plates, so we got the plain red ones from another set to match. Today we're going to another Target to find more so we'll have a setting for 8.

Gotta run. The Captain is home today and bugging me to get dressed and go . See ya!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Weigh-In

I had a breakthrough on the weight loss this week. -3lbs. Total is -14. Yay!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

She's a Hottie!


She's a Hottie!
Hot Water Bottle Cover & Insulator


Pattern:  She's a Hottie!, by Pammy Sue. I wrote one of my own because the only one I found online was for Mini Hot Water Bottles, which don't even exist here in the U.S. that I know of.  (The bottle I used is pictured at the bottom of this post.)  My pattern is a very basic pattern which I will post in a day or two (FREE). I need to get it typed up nice and neat for you. I just hand-scribbled the pattern as I went. I'm also going to write it a little bigger than the one you see above. I think it's stretched a little too much and needs to be a couple of stitches wider on the sides so you can't see the red bottle inside as well. You'll have to figure out the embellishments on your own.

I had never cross stitched in my life before this, so I had to learn that yesterday. I found a nice little site that shows the basics. A link will be provided in the pattern if you need it. I didn't have a cross stitch graph. I just looked at someone else's and copied their stitches.  The little crocheted rose and leaves were made using a pattern from Lucy of Attic 24.

Inspiration for this little beauty came from Coco Rose Textiles and Cherry Heart.



Here is the back. I made a flap so you can remove the bottle and wash the cover if need be. I made a shell border on the flap, but you could use buttons or whatever you like for decoration.


This is the type of water bottle I used. The body measures 7 1/4" x 10", not including the top bell-shape or bottom tongue for hanging. I had to compensate for the bottom hanger when I wrote the pattern. (I think these bottles used to be used as enema bags or douche bags in the "olden days." That's why there's a hanger on it.)


Bye, Friends!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Done, Done, Done!





Pattern:  Warm Wishes Afghan from Vanna's Favorite Gift Afghans
Yarn:  Vanna's Choice in Beige & Toffee, ILTY in Toasted Almond
Hook:  Size K
Pattern Changes:  I added a row of sc along each side. Pattern just had it left plain which looked unfinished to me. I chained 123 to begin. Measures 35" x 50". I also used a bigger hook and my own colors. The pattern colors were two shades of blue with ecru.
Satisfaction Level:  Very happy! This was a super-simple pattern, but the color changes made it more difficult. You definitely need to sew in your ends as you go or in chunks. I stopped to sew mine in every 30 rows or so.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Snowflakes in a Sea of Pink


Okay, so I made a couple of snowflake squares instead of crocheting on my blanket last night. (I know you are shocked that I got distracted like that. Ha.) I'm going to make mine in Pink and Off-White. I'm using ILTY in Pink for the border and Vanna's Baby in Lamb for the snowflake. I also added a round of sc at the end. 

It was taking me 45 minutes to an hour to make one.  I hope it gets quicker because I need to make 48 squares.  My squares are turning out to be 9 inches using a Size K hook.  I know that's a big hook, but I like the way it looks and feels.

I've been a good girl crocheting on my blanket this morning.  I need just a few more inches, maybe one more repeat of the color sequence before it's done.  Yee-Haw.

If you missed it yesterday, I put the pattern for the Snowflake Square up in my menu bar just underneath my blog header.  (To PP:  You go to Design, Layout, and click on "Pages" on the left-hand side of the page. From there you will be able to make a Page just like a blog entry and choose if you want the link to it in your sidebar or on a menu bar at the top of your blog.)

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Granny's Snowflake Afghan


My Granny made this afghan. I just love looking at this picture. I didn't even know it existed until a couple of years ago when my sister in San Diego sent me this picture. My Granny gave it to her years ago. I've always wanted to make one of these snowflake patterns into an afghan, but just never started. Maybe I should. 

I was really tempted to show you a picture of the afghan I'm working on. It's about 2/3 to 3/4 finished, and it is SO PRETTY! I think this is going to be a favorite of mine. I didn't want to spoil the fun of the Ta-Dah by showing it to you now, so I decided to show you my Granny's afghan instead. I think about 4 more evenings  of crocheting and weaving in ends should do it. This one won't have an elaborate border because the body really stands on its own. I can hardly wait!

P.S.  Look up at the bar right underneath my blog header picture. There's the snowflake pattern! I'm feeling all smarty-pants because I figured out how to do it. (Rant: And I put it here for FREE because someone on Ravelry is trying to sell the pattern for $2.00. Seriously, lady?  I figure if she can sell it for a profit when she didn't write it, then I can give it away for free!  I swear, some people would sell their mother for a buck. I guess I'd just give her away. LOL.  Not really, Momma!)

Monday, February 18, 2013

Old WIP Tah-Dah & Hair Thingies

I ended up having enough yarn to add seven rows.

(I love pointing out the dog feet in my pictures. It makes me laugh how often they are there if you look for them.)


All but one was edging.
I just made it up as I went along.

I took down my Granny Triangle Bunting and washed it yesterday.
It's hanging out to dry in the background.
Sammy just felt like being in the picture, I guess.
She stood there forever just looking at me.


So anyway, she's finished.
I'm thinking about getting another old one out and finishing it too!


I made this pretty hair scrunchy last night.
I used the pattern & tutorial HERE.
I sure miss LoveStitch since she quit blogging.
I used Stylecraft DK yarn and a size E hook.

Wanna see my dumb little ponytail?

Hee-hee
It's teeny-weenie!
That's another scrunchy I made last night.
I had to reach behind me to take the pic.
Sorry about the glare.


Worsted weight yarn, H hook,
Sc around band then 4 dc in each sc.
You're done.


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I'm still plugging along on the low-carb thing. I'm still hang out at the -9.5 point. I was down a pound lower than that before I gained 5 pounds in two days for no reason at all. The Atkins book lists some medications that can mess with your weight loss on this diet. Of course, I'm on ALL of them and more. Plus, I get those steroid injections every few weeks. I had six more on Friday. So I guess I'm going to bounce around the scale more than usual. At least I'm not growing a mustache. But I'm not giving up. I feel better not eating all the sugar and white flour and pasta foods.

That's all I've got today. Back to work. I've got to pay for all my yarn some how. See ya.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Replacement Granny

 
No, I'm not THAT fast! I thought about the replacement Granny all day today. I decided to rummage through my old WIPs because I knew I had a few Grannies started in there. This is the first one I saw, so I grabbed it. It doesn't have much to go before it's done, and I knew I had some of the old yarn I used too. I think this is at least four years old, maybe five or six.


It's so old that it had a skein of white Red Heart SS yarn attached to it. I haven't used that for a really long time. The other three colors are Lion Brand Cotton Ease. I may be able to squeak one round of sc out of the yellow, but that's about it. I should be make a few more rounds with the red and blue. Hopefully the white yarn I have won't be too different than the Red Heart so I can make a pretty border.

I'm really happy I'm going to finish this baby. I think I heard it breathe in a deep breath of fresh air when I took it out of the Rubbermaid box it's been in for years. Tonight is the first NASCAR race of the season, so that's what I'll be doing...crocheting and watching the race.

Y'all have a nice evening. I will!

No Heirlooms Here


Remember this scrap Granny blanket that I made a couple of years ago? It's been sitting in my living room ever since on the back of one chair or another. Once in a blue moon I'd throw it over my feet when they were cold, but mostly it just sat there looking pretty. Or not so pretty...I never really liked it much. The only reason I didn't give it away was because I loved the last few rounds of white, black, and aqua A LOT. I could always manage to fold it strategically so a lot of the good stuff was showing. But...


A few days ago, I walked by and noticed the above center. It was spontaneously coming unraveled...or was it? I have a sneaking suspicion that a skinny little white dog named Ollie had gnawed on it while I wasn't looking. I could sit down with it and figure out some way to save it, but instead, she's been relegated to the back porch for spring and summer.


She makes a nice decoration out there. I'm sure Janie will pull her off the back of the glider and snuggle up on her during the hours upon hours she loves to stay out there lying on the sunny corner. Spring days are coming quickly around here.

I'll make another one for the living room with the boxes of yarn I have stacked up around here. I think I'll use some softer colors this time. Who knows? I'll just crochet one round after another, pulling random colors out of the box and see what happens. I'm going to replicate the border if I can remember exactly what I did. I'll have to dig up the entries I made here when she was born. I'm sure I gave a link to it or outright wrote it down here.

If you look closely, you'll see my Dreamcatcher Ripple blanket laying on the other glider in that top picture. It's been out there all winter. I'm sure I laid it out there one day airing it out and just never brought it back in. Janie has been snuggled up in it more than a few times. I guess it's a porch blanket too now. There's no way in hell I could get all the dog hair and grass and dirt out of it now. 

I'm glad they're both still being well-used and well-loved. Better than stuck in a stuffy closet never to be admired or loved by anyone. What's the point of that when you have no one to pass them down to? All of my blankets will someday be in a thrift shop with a pitiful $5 hand-scribbled on the price tag. How depressing.

Gawd. Now why did I go there? Time to get up and redirect my mind.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Short Update

I've had a lot of work this week so have been MIA here. I have been crocheting quite a bit at night working on a new blanket. I showed a picture here a few entries ago when I first started it...the one in browns. It's about at the half-way point, maybe a little less.

Diet update: I died inside this morning when I got on the scale and had GAINED 4 LBS!!! Last week I stayed the same, and this week plus four? I don't get it. I'm totally not cheating, not even a nibble of anything illegal! I did find out that I shouldn't be eating nuts right now, and I was having a handful every night. That shouldn't account for what's happening though.  WHATEVER.

I'll be back in a few days when things settle down.

Monday, February 11, 2013

BBQ Ribs & Yummy Yarn


I made some low-carb BBQ sauce yesterday because I'm making ribs today in the crock pot. I still used Bev's Rib Recipe because it is the best I've ever found for making ribs in the house, but I made this low-carb sauce to cook them in. I got this recipe somewhere on the Low-Carb Friends boards, but I could not find it this morning. So instead of a link, here it is...

Low-Carb BBQ Sauce

1 chopped garlic clove
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 cup butter or 1/4 cup oil
4 Tbsp Splenda granules (not the packet kind)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dry mustard
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 tsp blackstrap molasses
1 1/2 cup water
1/3 cup cider or white vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 (6-oz) can of tomato paste
1 Tbsp liquid smoke

In a saucepan, melt the butter and cook the garlic and onion for 3-4 minutes. Stir in Splenda, salt, mustard, paprika, chili powder, and pepper. Add molasses, water, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and stir to combine. Let simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Whisk in the tomato paste and Liquid Smoke and let the sauce simmer for another 10 minutes, stirring often. Let the mixture cool, transfer it to a jar with a tight-fitting lid, and store in the refrigerator. Keeps well up to one month.

If you are not low-carbing, the recipe Bev gives HERE is really great. Here are Bev's instructions for making the ribs:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Season ribs with salt and pepper. Place in a shallow baking pan. Brown in oven 15 minutes. Turn over and brown another 15 minutes; drain fat. (Mine never get really brown.) Spray your crock pot with cooking spray. Cut the slab of ribs in half or thirds to fit your crock pot.  Mix the BBQ sauce ingredients. Place ribs in slow cooker. Pour sauce over ribs and turn to coat. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours, or until ribs are tender.

Note about the ribs:  I always use Tyson Baby Back Pork Ribs. I find them in the meat section (duh!) in a plastic package. It's usually anywhere from 3.75 to 4 lbs and in the range of $13 at Wal-Mart.

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Weigh-in yesterday:
Exactly the same as last week, DAMMIT!

I'm not going to eat any Atkins' bars this week. I had been having one a day this week, but I think they might be stalling my weight loss. They sure were good though. I may have to wait and only have those when I'm in the maintenance phase. My total lost is still 10.6 lbs.

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So after I threw that hissy fit with Knit Picks (who never responded to my email), the yarn order was on my front porch the next day! Oops. Still, I never did get a confirmation of my order so how was I to know? Plus, all over the invoice when I ordered it was stated that, "If you do not get a confirmation email, your order did not go through!"

Lying Liars
But I don't care anymore because I have my Chroma!









And the book, which is NOT great, by the way.
Nothing to write home about...just okay.
I doubt I will ever make any of the patterns, but I could possibly use one of the edgings. Not worth my $14, which was a sale price. Glad I didn't pay full price.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Ugly Crochet, Pretty Crochet, and a Luncheon


These are crazy-ugly colors now that I see a picture.

Good thing I frogged it. It's dead and in the garbage. In my defense, it was going to be a scrap afghan, but still...it's too ugly for even that. I don't quite have the placement of the stitches right either.


This is what the pattern looks like.

I was trying t o stash-bust and was using two strands of worsted weight yarn doubled. It was too thick and stiff and a huge pain in the ass with a double strand. I loved the pattern though once I figured out where all the stitches go. I'll try this one again sometime.  It came out of Vanna's Favorite Gift Afghans book.


Ah, yes. This is much better.

This is the pattern I settled on. I did not double the yarn, and I only chained 125 to begin, so it'll be smaller than a regular afghan, but bigger than a baby afghan, I think. The pattern called for you to chain 203 to begin.  However I am using a much bigger hook than called for. This is Warm Wishes Afghan in the same Vanna book. I chose my own colors because I had these in my stash to burn. I'm determined to get rid of some of that huge stash of yarn. Now if I could just stop ordering new stuff! (Not going to happen)

By the way, Knit Picks lost my order for the Chroma. I never got a confirmation email, but PayPal did acknowledge my authorization to pay them. That's the second time that's happened. I wrote them a bitchy email last night. Maybe they'll at least send me a coupon for a percentage off my next order for being such a pain in the ass. I'm waiting to see what they say.

Look at this pretty shawl I found of Flickr...

Sweet Summer Shawl
By Pattygloria on Flickr
She even gives the pattern HERE.
I love the peach colors.
So pretty!

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I had lunch over at my house for my sisters and momma last Saturday. Here is a picture of the table...

My oldest sister was here visiting from San Diego for my Daddy's 80th birthday. I even broke out my wine glasses...except they had gingerale and I had a Fresca. And I got a chance to use my pretty button plates too. Those are coconut candies at the top of the plates. (I gave mine to my momma.) I later put some wafer cookies in those blue Blenko leaf bowls and made them take them when they left. Since I was on the low-carb diet, I just made us a big salad and cut up some sub sandwiches. I ate some tuna salad out of one of them and threw away the bread. It was simple but good, and we had a good time visiting.

Absolutely nothing matches. Ha-ha.
Whatever. Sue me, Martha.

Oh, and somebody asked me where I got the button jug that my flowers were in (that matches the plates in these pictures).  I ordered them from Ireland at Avoca. I don't think they have them anymore on their site, but you can Google "Avoca Button Dishes" and find some. I bought them for myself for my birthday one year.
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I'm gonna crochet all day. Those are my big plans...drink hot tea and crochet. Life is good.