Sunday, December 30, 2012

Cotton Dishrag!

This is unblocked obviously, but look how yummy!

I got white cotton thread...I mean Hancock and knitted this dishcloth using this pattern linked by Pammie. It's easy when you get the hang of it; the only hard part is remembering what you were doing if you're talking to someone (yes, I had to rip out row after row over the holidays).
Dean said it was too pretty to use at the sink, but I got it wet and WRUNG it out and it wiped the counter just fine.

I washed it in warm and remeasured it to check for shrinkage, and it only shrunk a smidge in one direction, but it stretched back out fine.

I really want to do something more with a tankini...obviously with a lining underneath. No, maybe a sweater, or a short sleeveless's just so pretty knitted up!

Oh, and The Yarn Cottage in Fairhope is having a semi-annual sale on all yarn tomorrow, so I may drive over and check that out...since I got 2 new knitting magazines from Lucas for Christmas, plus a new book from my mom that has several sweaters I'm going to try (yeah, like I have time to knit several sweaters before the heat returns). This is the book - I snagged a pic from Amazon. Anybody knit anything from this yet?

Okay, back to work on the current sweater - I'm halfway through the front of the beige sweater I started before Christmas. OH, but I had a Lucas-ism from last night to share - WARNING: Graphic Language.

We were driving home and he said, "Dad, if you pass a kidney stone, does it come out your butt or your penis?" I laughed out loud, but I was proud of his proper terminology...sort of.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Straight to all my craft projects I've been working on for the past 3 weeks! This is my first felting attempt. They're coffee cup cozies (to spare the cardboard ones at Starbucks, so they're "green," see?), but they work on regular glasses too. Here's a felted one and an unfelted one so you can see the shrinkage. This yarn was only 50% wool, so it took about 3 washes in hot water to achieve that.

And this is a variegated yarn - made 4 of these with one skein. I like the different colors...except for the one that looks like vomit.

And I finished my niece's Auburn jacket - hooray!

Here's my sister's family in hats. I feel responsible for their warmth...though I hate that the Auburn one is too big...can't win 'em all (like Auburn - ha - didn't even see that one coming).

And my stepdad in plain black. I like this pattern the best - I think it fit the best. It's the same pattern as my nephew's Gamecocks hat above.

My SIL Elizabeth demonstrating how she feels one day after Pure Barre (wait, no, I think she's shaking her fists at me)...and how the cup cozies would be good sweat soaker-uppers...

And my attempt at a camouflage hat for my brother...yeah, I'm the only one that thinks that yarn looks like camouflage.

And this was just a neat picture I threw in. My sister hid candy canes all over the house for the kids to find, and she just gave them the green light to search. Funny how fast teenagers can move when candy is involved.

So this is just the lull between breakfast casserole and Christmas dinner in an hour, so I may try to fit in some knitting now. I hope you all had a very merry Christmas too!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve Pure Barre!

Can't show all the knitting yet, but I've got a white cotton washcloth about halfway done in the meantime. And today my 2 SIL's and my sister graciously agreed to join me at Pure Barre to see what it's all about.

I hope to have a plethora of knitted gifts to show you in the next couple of days. Now to go eat some buckeye balls and thumbprint cookies - have a Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Colonial Christmas

While we wait for the holidays to unfold so I can finally show you all my homemade gifts, here's what Lucas wore to Colonial Christmas at school. The jacket is actually a Simplicity creation I started in 1995 for myself. I think that's when the oversize men's jacket with blue jeans (and Keds, ha!) was really in. I even had lined pockets, but I just never got past the interfacing of the collar. At least I saved it so my kids could wear it a la George Washington's waistcoat, which I made by cutting away the front sides. (These kids don't need no finished edges!) To complete the look, I was brilliant enough to pink some T-shirt strips and sew them to the front of the cut-up T-shirt for that frilly ascot look.

I asked Lucas to give me a colonial pose. Drew pointed out to him that he curtsied.

He immediately attempted a more masculine bow....I guess.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


Since I can't show you my knitting projects, these are some pics from the weekend. Jake's eyes just kill me - I don't know how Drew didn't cave to the pressure to give him the doughnut. Note the imploring paw - I almost missed that when I took the picture.

And this is from the Webelos campout. That would be Lucas wearing the first pink hat I attempted that ended up too big. He wore it the entire weekend, despite his friends making fun of him. That boy's not right...but he stands up for his convictions! (And apparently has a touch of OCD, since he sleeps with the hat and carries it around the house...)

One question for you knitters - has anyone ever done a felting project? I washed it once in hot water with clothes and dried it, but it didn't shrink or felt. I guess I'll do it a bunch of times since it's only 50% wool and see what happens. I may have to abandon that and start something else - time's running out!!!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Doctor Will Sew You Now....

What a delightful time we had in Dr. Fun's Sewing Sweatshop today! (Jake is less than enthused.)

My mom and I both wanted to make another bunting for my stepbrother's niece, so we combined forces and knocked them out in no time (think Dueling Banjos, but we both still have all our teeth).
And speaking of banjos, today was made possible by Dean and Lucas camping with the Webelos, and my stepdad, Jim, taking Drew to shoot the .22 rifle. (This sounds like an episode of Duck Dynasty...)

(She's going to break a needle if she keeps sewing over pins like that, then we'll have to call Mountain Man to fix it.)

And here's my mom's version being modeled by my Cabbage Patch doll, called into service from the attic. We were going to put her beside the knock-off Cabbage Patch doll my mom made in the 80's, but that one's pigtails were too darn big to fit in the hoodie...

And here's my version made of chenille, which is so soft I should make underwear for everyone, but it sheds like crazy when you cut it - don't forget to serge all those raw edges! (Thanks to Jim for vacuuming while we packed our machines away.)

Maybe at Christmas we can get a picture of an actual baby modeling these...

Now off to finish my niece's Auburn fleece jacket and start a felting project...can't show a bunch of these knitted things because they're for family members who read the blog. There will definitely be a lot of photos of people modeling things when the holidays are over!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

ADHD Knitting

So I can't show you my sister's gift, but it's still at that previous link. I re-seamed it and it's all done. Then I started on my nephew's Gamecocks hat, but I haven't taken any pictures of that yet. And I also finished the back of my alpaca sweater! (Hope these unexpected stripes don't make my hips look big!)

So I cast on the front, then I took a break to work on the hat, then I took a break to do more Rosetta Stone. For future Rosetta Stone users, it's fantastic, but you kinda have to Google some stuff. Like the picture of a nice family has the word ryoushin, and another similar picture has the word kazoku, so I'm thinking there are 2 words for family. Well kazoku means family, but ryoushin means parents. Kinda hard to figure that out from one picture. Still fabulous, though. Back to knitting...

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Is This SusieHomemaker,MD?

No, but remember that scene in Castaway where Tom Hanks is happy he started a fire, and he beats his chest and yells, "I.....HAVE MADE FIRE!" That's me today. But it didn't start out well. (Does anything with me in a starring role in the kitchen start...or end....well?) I neglected to read the part of this recipe that said, "In a food processor..." Yeah, I don't have one. But wait! We have a juicer-thingy that processes in a cup!

So what happens here is that the flour and confectioners sugar shoot out the sides of this thing all over the counter. I abandoned that for the tiny nut-chopper-processor, but after carefully transferring some flour and a pat of butter into it, I realized it wasn't going to work. So guess what? I took a damn fork and painstakingly mixed the crust up like that. (Plus, who cooks lemon bars in a casserole dish? Well, people who don't have 8x8 square baking dishes.)

Well, it wasn't self-rising flour, so I'm not sure why it rose up in the middle like that, but I pushed it back down, and it never did turn "golden," but whatever. Here it is with the lemon juice, eggs, and sugar baked on top.

And I can't cut a square to save my life, plus my sugaring was a bit off, but I'll take it!

And even Drew, who hates lemons, proclaimed these delicious. Well, maybe I overstated that claim. Everyone said they were good....not fine, but good, which is better than fine!

And now if you'd like to see progress on the secret knitted item, please click here - but not you, Tracey! And this weekend I'll probably have Mary's triple-threat lemon cake to show you - bought the ingredients today!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Meyer Lemon Recipes, Anyone?

This is just part of the haul from our 3 trees, picked before the dreaded freeze. There are still some on the tree, but I haven't tried them yet to see if they ruined. Other than the best lemonade ever, anybody got any great recipes? I tried key lime pie (since Drew insisted they were limes past their prime) but Lucas spit the first mouthful out, and I couldn't blame him. I'm going to try to make lemon bars, but I have to yank myself away from knitting and Rosetta Stone first. Want a taste of what I've learned with RS?

Konnichiwa! Onna no hito tachi ga wanpiisu o kitte imasu.
(Hello! The ladies are wearing dresses...or they HAVE dresses...still a little fuzzy on the verb there.)
Otto kono ko to otto kono hito wa hashitte imasu. (The boy and man are running.)
Japanese visitors, feel free to correct me if I've mangled it. Robbie can attest to how amazing it is that my Southern accent disappears completely when I'm speaking Japanese...uh, right, Robbie?

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Post-Thanksgiving Roundup

Well I hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving! I was on call and am not the greatest cook (see end of post for the gory details), so my husband did all the cooking (for 3 days he cooked!). Here's a picture of his and Lucas's apple pie - he even made leaves!

But we have to talk about knitting! So my knitting obsession made me buy the holiday Vogue Knitting magazine at Hancock yesterday. I went to buy yarn for a special project, but I can't talk about it here since my sister reads the blog. I've put it up on Ravelry, and she better promise not to go there (do NOT click on this link, Tracey). I'm just getting started on it, but have watched several videos on YouTube that helped. Anyhoo, this was on the cover of the Vogue magazine - a peplum!

See, knitting chicks got it going on too! For you non-sewer people, peplums are apparently all the rage and Pattern Review is full of peplum patterns. (Of course, by the time I finished knitting this, peplums would be out of fashion.)

Anyway, I also finished a hat for my BIL - Tracey, do NOT show Joe this page!
I improvised a pattern from a couple of other patterns, but I still need to work on decreases at the crown. I'm not happy with the poofiness of it, but the original pattern only had 3 rows of decreases and was even more poofy.

Oh, and if you're ready for the reason I don't cook so much, it's because of the family gathering where I was assigned only the sweet potato casserole to cook. Now how hard could that be? So I'm cutting up sweet potatoes to boil, and I slice off a chunk of my pinky tip. It commences to bleeding very badly, so Dean has to stop what he's cooking and help me wrap it up. I applied pressure for about 15 minutes and it was still bleeding, so we debated going to the ER, but there wasn't anything you could stitch together, really, so I just kept up the pressure. Finally it quit bleeding. Anyway, I proceeded on with my dish and boiled the potatoes, then poured them into the colander to drain. That's when I found the little pinky tip I was missing - EWWWWW! Now everything was boiled and aseptic, so it didn't ruin the casserole or anything, but I'm now excused from all cooking - woohoo!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Another Mad Cow Moment

No, this isn't it. This is a mask my sister sent me, and it scared Lucas but not the dog, surprisingly. It comes with a serum that you rub in after you wear this cloth for 15 minutes, and boy my skin was soft after that! Here's a link to Perfectly Posh if you're in need of a facial.

No, my Mad Cow moment was before this mask. Lucas and I ran some errands last night and popped in Walgreen's for a gallon of milk on the way home. The clerk really wanted me to have a rewards card, so we got carried away setting that up, and Lucas was looking at toys while I paid. We came home and had a lovely evening for an hour and a half, then I realized I hadn't brought the milk in the house. I went to check the car, then I realized I didn't remember carrying it out of the store. Lucas said he didn't carry it out either so I called the store, and sure enough, I left it sitting there on the counter. (Now to be fair, Walgreen's puts your bagged items on a lower counter that can easily be overlooked when you're paying. I really think they should raise that counter for people like me.)

They were kind enough to put it back in the cooler for me till I came to get it, and they didn't even make mooing noises as I was leaving!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Dr. Fun Sews Again!!

Well, I finished a second Bernat Tizzy hat that's smaller and used one skein of that yarn...

and I'm continuing work on the full-size sweater made with alpaca wool I got at Clara's Loom...(and this is natural un-dyed wool, but look how I'm ending up with stripes - cool!)

but Dean inspired me to get back upstairs on the sewing machine. He said my machine was probably crying because it was so lonely and forgotten. What he probably meant was that he's tired of my running commentary while he (tries to) watch football. Knitting does give me more together time with the family! So here's my muslin of Kwik Sew 3740. I wanted a new shirt to wear to Pure Barre, so I made the XL length.

Straight out of the envelope, I'm amazed at the fit - hooray! Well...

Need to do a swayback adjustment...and what's up with the weird left shoulder wrinkle?

and I guess I'll lower the armscye. I had problems with wrinkles under there on another shirt. Seems like I always have an issue with my armholes...sigh.

So if you combine the muslin of the Silhouette yoga pant with this shirt, I'll just look like a mess in class.
You know what? I think I'll go back to knitting.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Whatchoo Think 'Bout This Hat?

This was the crazy Bernat Tizzy yarn. It's Super Chunky, so this hat was finished in one day...despite the fact that I couldn't see the stitches at all and had to restart multiple times to get the right number of cast-ons.

It still ended up being a little too big at the bottom, but it kind of has a floppy wavy look...and a shower-cap kind of look...

So this was going to be for my hairdresser, since she said she tried to make a fuzzy pink hat with eyelash yarn and never got it finished...and that was the second thing she every tried to knit.

So would you wear this in the winter-time, or is it too embarrassing for an adult to wear? Be honest....

Friday, November 2, 2012

The Sweater is Finished!

But first, here's our Halloween at work. We even got the medical student rotating with us to be a scarecrow - she did her best on short notice.

And now........without further ado.........TA DAAAAAAAA!!!!!

Ooh, that neckline is very ripply, but this is pre-blocking, and amazingly, it disappeared with blocking - who knew?! Here's the back.

And because I'm so proud of that Trinity stitch (or Blueberry stitch)...

And yes, I sewed the button on with 5 minutes to go before Pure Barre, and it was just a little chilly, so I wore that sucker to class! (I had thoughts of them asking me where I got it because they'd love to sell it in their store. They sell all kinds of weird drapey tops to warm up in....yeah, they didn't ask.)

And here it is with a collared shirt and work pants.

And here it is with an untucked shirt and jeans - that's okay, right?

So I'm deliriously happy today, but now it's onto a fuzzy pink hat! Have a great weekend!!!