Friday, September 15, 2017

Finally A Weasley

As a Harry Potter lover, I've long wanted the knitwear from the movies, especially one of the sweaters that Molly makes the kids each year for Christmas. In January I decided on a yarn and started one and finally finished it last week.
I'm so happy with how it turned out - oversized and snuggly. The yarn is a wool blend and will be nice and warm this winter. The pattern wasn't hard, it was just a lot of flat stockinette stitch which bores be, so I put it aside a lot for more interesting things.
The pattern is from the book Charmed Knits. It's all items from or inspired by the movies. I've had it for nearly ten years and this is the first thing I've made from it. It won't be the last, though.
Next up, though, is a cabled cardigan. The pattern was gifted to me several years ago and I've finally decided on the perfect yarn. I'm making some baby hats for charity, too, and have an expecting coworker who I want to make something for. That's all for today. Hope you all have a great weekend!

Friday, September 1, 2017

Nineteen Years Later

You know how much I love Harry Potter. Did you know that today, September 1, is the day of the epilogue? It's the day that Harry takes his youngest son to Platform 9 3/4 for his first year at Hogwarts. To celebrate, I want to share some of my favorite read-along podcasts. Tales From Godric's Hollow is Matt, a long time fan, and Josh, a total newbie, reading through the series. Josh seriously hadn't read the books or seen the movies and had no idea what he was getting into. They have great discussions about the chapters (usually two per week) and have built quite a community of fans. They give away a prize every week, thanks to their patreon sponsors. I won a little dragon during Goblet of Fire! It's really cute. They just celebrated their anniversary with a fun, live you tube episode. The episodes are long (the latest was over three hours) but probably half of that is reading emails from listeners. Check them out for fun discussion and fresh eyes. Dear Mr. Potter is hosted by Alastair, who is (if I remember correctly) a college literature professor - or he was, he recently moved. He brings so much knowledge about novel writing and references to each chapter. His show is recorded during live you tube chats, so there's interaction with viewers about topics that come up. Listening to him makes me feel so much smarter. He also hosts There and Back Again, a Tolkien reread, which is also amazing. His episodes are usually about an hour and a half long, sometimes longer, but are worth it. Harry Potter and the Sacred Text is about finding spirituality in the books, chapter by chapter. Vanessa and Casper met at theology school and have such a great relationship. They are like brother and sister but get really deep in topics like forgiveness and love. The way Vanessa says "Hermione" makes me smile. Their episodes are short - about half an hour - but really make you think. I hope you check these out. Listening to them brings new dimension and perspective to the books for me and gives me a place to just geek out and be a fan. Let me know if you've found any that I should listen to! Alohomora!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Inspired By Stevie

Stevie Nicks is rarely far from my mind. Lyrics come out of my mouth randomly and I often have the urge to twirl as if draped with chiffon. I can't tell you how often I have a kid get frustrated with me dancing to no music - because Sara or Gypsy is in my head and they just can't hear it. I follow a couple of Stevie fan accounts on instagram and am treated to dozens of pictures every day, and, as you know, Stevie wears a shawl like no one else. I've read that she crochets, too, and an idea was ignited. I have a shawl pattern book from 1971 and decided to make one of them -
using some red yarn that I've had for ages. Mine isn't as full as the picture, but I really like it.
Yeah, I'm in jeans today. I've been feeling kind of down. Today is the last day of J. C. Penney in town. It's the latest in a long like of businesses that have closed up. This town seems to be dying. We even had a thrift shop close - that can't be a good sign. I've been moody, too, and I'm blaming it on the upcoming eclipse. I mean, if a monthly full moon can make people crazy, a full solar eclipse must make us insane...that's my excuse, anyway. Joshua has been trying his best to cheer me up. If I'm sitting, he's on my lap. I appreciate the effort, I must say. That's all for the end of July. Happy birthday, Harry Potter! Have a great week, everyone!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Socks With Stories

I haven't gotten any better with my time management - maybe when school starts back up I'll be able to make a schedule that will stick. I have made a few things to show you, but today I just have a couple of pair of socks that I've knit over the past few weeks. Sock story number one: a couple of months ago one of my Ravenclaw friends asked us in the group if we'd like some sock yarn as she was destashing. I said sure because I always have room for a couple of skeins and I knit a lot of socks. About three days later I was watching Ghostbusters (the new one - I love Holtzman and Patty so much) and enjoying a day off when I heard a thud on the porch. When I opened the door, I saw a giant box and wondered what Eric had ordered and if I had maybe bought something and didn't remember. Well, it was addressed to me and when I opened it, it was full of sock yarn. Full. Thirty-four skeins. I was floored. I couldn't stop looking at all of the beautiful colors and squishing it all. One skein didn't have a label, so I caked it up and picked a pattern and this is them:
The pattern is called Double Agent and was inspired by Snape, but the colors are so bright that the stitches don't show. They're so bright and cheerful! I have a nice-sized ball left to make a little something else or maybe a pair of footies. Sock story number two takes us a bit further back. Several years ago, when Khloe was about eight or nine, I gave her a big skein of plain yarn to dye up. She had a great time picking colors and made a very springy and light colorway. I had already made socks for my mom from it and the giant cake has been staring at me, waiting for more attention. Well, I got it out and started knitting, planning to overdye the socks when I was done because green and orange are not my colors in any way. I rewatched a documentary called Paris Is Burning while knitting one afternoon - it's about the drag balls in New York in the 80s and the birth of voguing and interviews many different people. I've watched it several times because it's so interesting to me and especially now knowing that RuPaul and his best friend Michelle were a part of that scene but not in the movie. As I was watching, it came to the part where we, the viewer, meet a young girl named Venus who is so tiny and sweet but tough and has huge dreams of getting married and having a family. It hit me that the yarn was the same colors as what Venus wears, so I decided to leave them green as a tribute to her tragic story - spoiler, she was murdered.
I didn't capture the greenness very well in the picture. It's more of a fresh leaf kind of color. The pattern is called Fawkes, more Harry Potter inspiration. The designer faked her own death to get out of some obligations and caused quite a stir in the knitting community a few years ago. I don't know if her actions ever caught up with her. Finally, a kitten update. We determined that her birthday is in the first week of July, so she's one now and has gotten huge.
She's a very healthy eater and loves stealing Joshua's food. I kind of have to prepare myself when I want to pick her up since she weighs at least twelve pounds now. She still has her sweet face, though. Eric recently got a smart phone and it's full of pictures of Buffy which Khloe and I think is hilarious. That's all for today. Have a great week and I'll see you again soon.

Monday, May 22, 2017

On To The Future

Saturday was a big day for us. Kerry graduated from high school. It was quite a journey - he had a lot of behavior issues and attitude problems which got him moved to a special school for such kids. Then he moved to his dad's house and they moved again - four schools in four years. He talked about quitting a couple of times but must have had some sort of awakening and got his act together. I'm so proud of him. He even got certified as a lifeguard the previous weekend and is going to work at a public pool this summer. I finally got a picture of us together, but their dad is very tall so the angle is weird.

And I'm standing on my toes! My kids did not get their height from me. Now Kerry is planning to go on to be a teacher, of all things. Now if only I could influence his taste in music...

Monday, May 15, 2017

Summer Top

I finally did some sewing. I've wanted to make one of these ruffle tops since last year, but my time management skills are lacking.
I'm not sure how I feel about the color, but it's cotton so I can dye it if I want to later. It was super easy to make. I used one of the hundred tutorials on Pinterest but can't remember which one exactly. Now I'm going through my fabric stash to make a couple more! Mother's Day was yesterday. Look at the great cards I got!
Khloe went the sweet route. Eric knows my geeky heart. The two latest Star Wars movies have really reawakened my love for the series. I saw the original movie when it came out and had a tee shirt and Chewbacca action figure (don't know where he went). I put my sci fi love on the back burner for a long time, but now I'm in a place where I can be as much of a fan as I want. Last night, on my way home from work, I saw a woman walking her dog. Not unusual, of course, but I took a second look and saw that she was walking a big orange cat! It's the first time I've seen that around here. Khloe wants to walk Joshua and Buffy, but they aren't too thrilled with the idea. Buffy flopped flat on the floor when Khloe put a harness on her. She's such a dramatic kitten. That's it for today. Have a great week!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Prom!

Khloe's first prom was this past weekend. She was super excited. Her date was a friend, not her boyfriend, so that made her less nervous about eating and dancing - does everyone get self-conscious about dancing in front of someone they like? They had a great time and, of course, looked amazing.

My parents came to see her before she left and got a picture, too:

My babies are all grown! Kerry turned eighteen last month. Eighteen. He graduates next month and is getting ready for college. I've been making some things but it's slow going. I've apparently forgotten how to manage time with a job. Bad me! I'm figuring it out, though, slowly but surely. That's all for today. Back soon, my dears!