Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Seen on Halloween

Hello!  Just a quick post with photos of the Trick-or-Treaters who stopped by tonight.

And my own Moogie sent me a photo of herself buying Eggplant in her Eggplant Costume:

Happy Halloween everyone!
Stay safe and well.

shaping the world with a big bowl of candy.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Eastside Crochet Guild Meets and Honors a Member


I took the above photo at about 8 am.  You can barely see the hills across the lake because of all the clouds and fog.  It has been really raining all day.  Not like what is happening on the East Coast with the Frankenstorm, but still a lot of rain in one day.  I have relatives in New Jersey, and the last we heard from them was late last night, as the eye was approaching.  I hope they are ok.

Eastside Crochet Guild
I finally made it to a meeting of the Crochet Guild.  They meet on the 4th Sunday of every month from 2 - 4.  They used to meet at Crossroads Mall in the community room, but when the Mall was sold, the new owner asked all of the groups using the community room to pay a fee, and since this group is pretty small, they had to look for a new place to meet. The assisted living center just behind Crossroads, Sunrise Senior Living, offered them a space for free.  The senior center is perfect.  It is cozy.  There is free coffee, tea, juice, and COOKIES!  And sometimes, the residents join in with the group.  As a thank you to the center, the crochet guild members are planning to hook lapghans for the residents.  I think it's a great idea.

This group is much like the Knitting Guild.  They do a lot of charity hooking.  Many of the members are in both guilds.  On Sunday, they had a little party for one of the members.

I was lucky in my first meeting.  They were honoring Lester Vaughn.

Lester is a former knitting and crochet teacher at Pacific Fabrics.  She is truly a local treasure.  Many of the members of both guilds learned to knit and crochet from her.  She is "retired" now at the age of 91, but still attends all of the guild meetings, and the open stitching groups at Pacific Fabrics.  There is a lovely blog article about her on their website here.


I have been trying to finish up a few projects that have a deadline.  I finished my socks for SKA, SolidSocks, and my OWL and already blogged about that.  But I wanted to finish up one more class for HPKCHC.  I have finished all 8 classes now, detention, and 2 Quidditch games for October.  I also hit the 50% mark on my BROOM project.  So I am totally up to date for the game and ready for November.

Wow.  All you need to do to play the game is submit 1 class every month.  That was my plan.   But I am horribly competitive.  Also, I feel guilty if I don't get all of the points possible for my House which is Gryffindor.

The last things I finished up are a hat for my son, Pookie, to wear on Halloween.  He wants to be Sherlock Holmes, so I made the Elementary - Deerslayer Hat.  I have to say I did not like the pattern.  I actually paid for it, but it is not very professionally written.  It is a bit difficult to follow, and I had to really reduce the size as it came out HUGE.  But it pretty much looks like the right hat, so it's all good.

I was also knitting frantically on my spa washcloths.

I proposed this project as a BROOM, and am now making 10 by the end of November.  This works out perfectly for me as I need a crap load of them for Christmas gifts.  I am really trying to make my class assignments be for things I would be making anyway.  The game gives me a push to GET THINGS FINISHED.  I like that.  But I was feeling just a tiny bit stressed this month with the 2 trips I took, and the amazing wrinkled raisin costume I sewed, that I would not finish up all of the classes.

We can get points for only 6 class turn ins.  I have turned in 8 each month.  Why?  Why?  because there is a special Gryffindor badge for people who turn in all 8 classes each month (24 classes), detention each month (3), and participate in all Quidditch Challenges.  This badge is called the Crazy Train Conductor Badge.

Toot!  Toot!  I am on the crazy train.

Stay safe and well.

Shaping the planet in the rain.
later in the day, still raining, but the fog on the lake has lifted

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Bubbly Socks

Can you tell that the bird in the photo is a Bald Eagle?  I snapped a quick photo as one of our local pair rode the air vents over our lake.

I am just writing a quick post to show off my finished Bubbly Socks.  The yarn is Aussie Sock by Oasis Yarns in the Amethyst colorway.

I had to do a gauge swatch for these because they are part of my History of Magic OWL for HPKCHC, and gauge swatches are mandatory for the submission process.  And, well, they fit perfectly! 

I have been wearing them all day. 

Time for bed.
Stay safe and well.

Shaping the planet with a new pair of socks.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Fire in the Neighborhood


Last evening, as I was sewing a Halloween costume for Moogie (more on that later), I heard sirens coming up my hill, turning in front of my house, continuing up just a bit further, then stopping.  Well the fire trucks stopped, the sirens did not, as more and more trucks arrived.  I looked out my front door, and saw FIRE. 

Up on the top of our hill there was a house blazing away.  I could see the flames, but not at all which house was on fire.
Our neighborhood is in transition from older owners to newer ones.  The houses are all about 40 years old, and many well most of the original owners have moved to either smaller houses, or retirement areas.  One of my best friends in the neighborhood lives on the top of the hill, just about where the flames were blazing.

It was very cold, but no rain, that came this morning.  So I walked up the hill as quickly as I could, frantically texting my friend, to see if she was home.  She was not, and it was not her house, but one 2 doors down that was burning. 

Luckily, the family that owned the house was out, and their dog in the back yard.  Neighbors got the dog, and turned their hoses on until the fire trucks arrived.

They also wet down their own roofs and walls.  I know the people on both sides of the house that burned, and their next door neighbors, as well.  This family was a new one, and I had not met them yet.  My friend, got my text and turned around arriving not too long after the fire department. 

Neighbors poured out of their houses and we stood in the cold watching the fire department work to stop the fire.

Every time I thought it was over, another spot would blaze up. 

The next door neighbors could not return to their houses until the fire was out completely, but I guess there are so many things that can burn slowly and unseen in a modern house, that putting the fire out completely is not so easy.

It is amazing that none of the trees caught fire.  Our neighborhood has lots of very large trees.

I went back this morning to see what it all looked like in daylight.  My friend told me that the fire department stayed the whole night, and when I checked at about 9 am, they were there, working.
I hope that our street can come together to help this new family rebuild.  So, so scary.  At least we can all be happy that no one was hurt.

It almost seems foolish to talk about stitching after the experiences of last night, but life does go on.

I have spent the last 3 days sewing a Halloween costume for my daughter, Moogie.  I mailed it off to her just before the Post Office closed, along with her mail in ballot. 

She texted me last weekend asking if I could make this costume.  This was our texted conversation:

Moogie:  Can you make me a Grapefruit costume for Halloween?
Me:  Big and round and yellow?
Moogie:  Yes, perfect, that's it.  Please?
Me:  Well, I've never made anything like that but I can try.

Moogie:  I love you.

Then about 5 minutes later...
Moogie:  I mean an eggplant, can you make an eggplant?
Me:  Big and pear-shaped and purple?
Moogie:  Yes, perfect, that's it!  Please?

I am not kidding.  That was the conversation.  So I bought a bunch of purple broadcloth, and tried to fashion a pear-shaped bag-like costume.  I had a lot of trouble making it look full.  I think I needed to add boning, but I was too lazy.  Basically, I made the big bag that was straight down then flared out.  I gathered the top and the bottom.  Then I sewed an inner lining that was more of a tube and tacked it inside over the fattest part and tried to fill it.  I added a bunch of netting, and then some old batting I had.  It never completely filled.  It looks a bit like a wrinkly raisin.  Then I forgot to take a photo before I packed it.

The only photos I have are of the cats sitting on the netting.

Moogie will have to take a photo for me.  Then I will post that even if she does look like a raisin instead of an eggplant.

Stay safe and well.
Check your fire alarms.

Shaping the planet with a giant raisin costume, O! and a photo of  Pookie wearing his Mobius Cowl

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Crocodile Flower Square Round Photos

Round Photos for The Crocodile Flower
by Joyce D. Lewis

This amazing square was designed by Joyce D. Lewis, who is Dunnica on Ravelry.   It is the August Filler square for the 2012 BAMCAL Group.   The directions are clear and easy to follow.  The only change I made is the size of the hook.  I'm using size E 3.5mm hook because I hook loosely and the designer hooks tightly.  Even with that, I had to leave off the last framing row.

Because this square is hooked in two parts, the square itself, and then the overlay petals or "surface crochet," it is a very thick square that uses a ton of yarn, about 220 yards total.   As you can see by the above photo, that didn't stop me from hooking it 4 times.  I love it.  

Thank you, Joyce, for this gorgeous square.

Magic Loop

Round 1:
as written  

Round 2:
put in marker in top of first trc
as written
New front

New back

Round 3:
moved marker to first ch
continue on back side
New front

New back

as written

Round 4:
as written
continue on back side
New front

New back

Measured here, and got 3 in.

Round 5:
as written
using gold

Round 6:
as written
using maroon

measured here, got 5.5 in.  

Round 7: 
As written
using green

measured here, got 6.5 in.

Round 8:
beginning frame
remember to ch2 on the sides, ch 3 in the corners
I changed color to my frame color instead of staying with green
otherwise, as written

marker placed and right on target for size

I finished off the yarn so that next round I could reattach at the corner.

Round 9:
attached same color as in round
as written

Round 10:
as written

Round 11:
as written

Round 12:
as written

Round 13:
as written,  

10 in =)  Still on Target

Round 14:
added photos of how to do the Long Double Crochet (ldc)
Yo hook, and insert 1 row below working row

Yo and pull through, slightly elongating loop
finish as for a regular DC
Yo and pull through 2 loops
Yo and pull through last 2 loops

Sawtooth Border
as written

Round 15:
as written FO

Round 16:
as written

hit 13 in.

so ripped back
replaced with  sawtooth sc row. and got 12 in!

Round 17:
did not do

Surface Crochet
or Petal Rounds

Round 18:
I counted 6 sawtooths from the left corner for the first leaf attachment

The corners are easy to find.

The next leaf was placed at 7 sawtooths from the right corner.

I continued in this pattern.

Round 19:
Once you have placed the leaves/petals for round 19, the rest are easy because they simply go in between.
As written.

Round 20:
As written


Gorgeous, isn't it?

I have been watching Once Upon a Time all day.  Honestly, I thought I would check the show out because last year I started watching it, but then got busy, and I don't usually watch TV one week at a time.  I would way rather wait until there is a season's worth, then just watch back to back shows.  I am so hooked it is almost embarrassing.

I love Netflix.  I don't want to have to chase shows and movies all over the various channels and sites.  I just want one site.  I want everything available on one site.  Why is that so hard?  Just the other day my son, Pookie, and I were talking about watching the movie, The Boat that Rocked.  This is the British version of the movie Pirate Radio.  Why can't we get this movie in the USA?  Last year, my daughter bought the DVD's for a British TV show that we just can't get here.  Of course, we couldn't play them because the DVD players are somehow different, and movies released there, even when bought fairly, won't play on USA DVD players.  This is wrong.  

I am standing up for universal access to all media!  I WANT MY TV SHOWS AND MOVIES.

Enough said.
Stay safe and well.

shaping the planet from Storybrook, Maine (not really)