Friday, August 31, 2007

Once in a Blue Moon

Once in a Blue Moon ... is a common way of saying not very often, but what exactly is a Blue Moon?
According to the popular definition, it is the second Full Moon to occur in a single calendar month.
On average, there will be 41 months that have two Full Moons in every century, so you could say that once in a Blue Moon actually means once every two-and-a-half years.

And 'once in a blue moon' 14 years ago - two precious babies were born!

Seems like just yesterday I was holding my first born grandchildren in my arms. They were premies at 34 weeks, and weighed 4 1/2 lbs. each. Now they are taller than I am - and starting High School next week.

I'm giving Jordyn this felted bag (adapted from Jaynes AP Bag) It has a cell phone pocket inside and an adjustable strap.

I'm filling it with some jewelry from her favorite store, Aeropostale, and a gift card.
For Jacob - a game for his X-Box and a gift card.

They are having an overnight Survivor party at their 'camp' (lake house) - my job is to make up a treasure hunt for them. I'll let you know how it turns out!

Happy 14th Birthday my precious babies!!!!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Oprah's Pay it Forward Challenge

After two long days of inspirational speakers who were not inspirational at all, staff meetings, and getting my room ready for the first day of school on Sept. 4, I turned on the t.v. to check the score of the Yankee/Red Sox day game - saw the Red Sox were getting sweeped and switched over to the Oprah show. It was probably a repeat, but I hadn't seen it before. It was a Pay it Forward challenge to her, that was inspirational!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Bring on the Yankees!

Gonna knit some red sox while I watch the games!

Monday, August 27, 2007


I've been playing around with my blog - notice the buttons on my sidebar - they actually link to the sites! And I also added a counter. I started the counter at 100, so no one would think I didn't have any friends :), but was amazed and quite flattered to see that I had over 70 visitors today. That is until I realized that most of those visitors were ME - trying to figure out how to make the buttons link! So, if you visit, leave me a comment, okay - so I don't have to keep talking to myself (VBG).

Sunday, August 26, 2007

American Folk Festival

I went to the American Folk Festival in Bangor yesterday. It's held on the waterfront the last weekend in August each year and there are performers from all over the world, craft tents, and lots of food. The music and food are great, but I spent most of my time in the craft tents. There were only a couple of fiber booths - Crows Wool had wet and needlfelted wool framed art, which facinates me and is something I want to try someday, and Done Roving Carding Mill, where I spent a lot of time petting wool. Maybe it was the heat (the weather here turned hot and sticky after a week of fall weather), but all of the yarn felt stiff and scratchy - and suspiciously like kool-aid dyed yarn. I hope no one caught me smelling it! Another favorite booth was the Lucinda pin booth. Lucinda spent two years being homeless, and created these pins as a fundraiser for the homeless. This particular booth was raising money for Habitat for Humanity in Bangor. They are actually made on a cardboard base, which is coated with layers and layers of varnish. The detail on them is amazing. I bought these two which I absolutely love!

They are $15.00 ea. and you can order them in bulk for fundraising or individually on line here.

I love pins and have a large collection of them. Because I teach young children most of my pins are whimsical - the kids love them. So in addition to the Luncinda pins, I couldn't resist this pin by Lisa Bess. She makes the most amazing pins, badge holders, eyeglass holders and other adornments out of new, found, and recycled objects. As with the Lucinda pins - the detail in her work is amazing. You can see more of her work and check to see if she is going to be showing at a craft fair near you here.

Those are actually real rocks from the Maine coast that the lighthouse is sitting on.

In other booths there were all kinds of yummy lotions, soaps, herb mixes,maple syrup, fudge, jewelry, way too much to name.

It was a long day and the heat finally got to me, so I headed home with my treasures, listening to the Red Sox beat the White Sox 14-2 - and stopped to do some food shopping - see below!

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Share Your Chocolate

Food shopping is not my favorite thing to do. I guess they know that where I shop and that's why they put a reward at the check-out counter for me. I'm sure that the raspberry counts as a serving of fruit - right?

And this was the message in the wrapper

So, this is for you!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Galway Striped Bag Pattern

For those of you who asked - I wrote up the pattern for the Galway Striped Bag.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Braided Neckpiece

This is the braided neckpiece from the Loop-d-Loop book. It was a really fun knit, once I figured it out. I didn't care for all of the ends I had to weave in though! I would have loved to knit it from the yarn called for in the book, 3 balls of Karabella Yarns "Super Cashmere" (100% cashmere), but at $55.00 a ball it was just a tad over my yarn budget! So I used some bulky LB Wool-Ease instead, because I had some in my stash (who knows why I bought it - must have had something in mind). It needs to be blocked, but with an acrylic yarn, that's not going to do too much for it. I am going to make more of these, the Knit Picks catalog that arrived today has the perfect yarn - Panache - @ $4.99 a ball, and Quarry @ $3.99 a ball both would be perfect for this scarf. Well, yes, of course I know I'm on a yarn diet (you don't have to remind me that my ticker at the top of my blog is not moving along very quickly), but the exception to the rule is that I can buy yarn for gifts, and these scarves are going to be gifts (and one of those gifts is going to be to me!).

Monday, August 20, 2007

Galway Striped Felted Bag

Here is the finished sling bag. I forgot to take the measurements before I felted it - but it's about 11" x 10" now, knit with Galway wool. This is a gift for my DD's anniversary. And, yes, I know it's her hubby's anniversary too - so I put a Home Depot gift card in the bag. Actually my DD can be found in HD more often than her hubby!
This is not exactly my own pattern, it's a combination of several different free patterns I found on the internet, so I think it's okay to post the pattern I came up with. I used Plymouth Galway 100% wool in five different colors - dark torquoise, light torquoise, dark pink, light pink, and purple. The stripes are random - wider stripes are 8-10 rows, and narrow stripes are 2-4 rows. You can make up your own stripe pattern, or use the radom stripe generator.
Using size 11 circular needles, cast on 100 stitches and join in the round. Place a marker at the beginning of the row. Work in desired stripe pattern for about 20". Next Row - Knit 19, knit 12 and place these 12 stitches on a stitch holder, knit 38 and place these 38 stitches on a stitch holder, bind off next 12 stitches, knit 38 and turn (you will now be working back and forth on one handle side) Keep working in the stripe pattern as you work the handles.
Handle: Row 1 (and all odd rows) Purl
Row 2(and all even rows) K1, SSK, knit to last 3 sts. K2TOG, K1
Repeat these 1 rows until you have 12 sts. left on the needle. Place these 12 sts. on a stitch holder and tie off yarn leaving a tail.
With wrong side facing you, pick up the 38 stitches from the stitch holder for the other side of the handle and repeat the two rows above. When you reach the 12 remaining sts., keep working in st. stitch (keeping stripe pattern) until your handle is as long as you want it (remember it will shrink about 40-50% in the felting. I made my handle about half as long as the pre-felted bag. Then graft it to the other side of the handle.
Tab: Pick up the 12 sts. remaining on the stitch holder and knit in st. stitch (I made my tab a solid color) for about 5", then decrease (K1, SSK, knit to last 3 sts. K2TOG, K1) on each knit row for a couple of rows to round off the tab.
Turn bag inside out and sew up the bottom. Felt bag (Galway felts pretty quickly so watch it) until it is the size you want. Mine was about 11 x 10 (not counting the handle). Stuff with plastic bags to shape while drying.
When bag is dry - cut a slit in the tab, and sew a corresponding button on the bag.
I also made this solid color, needlefelted, version of this bag for my ITEIV pal.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Pay It Forward

Jopal, Marysaline, and MaryLynn will be receiving a 'pay it forward' surprise sometime in the near future! Thanks for playing - and don't forget - don't pay it back - pay it forward!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


Ten packs of Kool-aid :$2.00, One skein of white Paton's Classic Wool: $4.99, An afternoon of fun with my granddaughter: Priceless!

Mixing up the kool-aid

We tried painting the yarn first Then we tried pouring

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The third one (on the right) was dipped.

The painted one was her favorite - I think it's beautiful too!
Yes - she's a Red Sox fan too!

I mailed out my package to my KVVS Pal Nancy today. To find out where she is going (she already knows!) Click here. To see what was in her package, click here. I still don't know where I am going! :(

Monday, August 13, 2007

Pay It Forward

I found this on Donna's Blog and thought it was pretty neat. It’s based on the movie with Helen Hunt and Kevin Spacey in it called ‘Pay It Forward’.. Here's how it goes:

I will send a handmade gift to 3 random people who leave a comment on my blog requesting to join this Pay It Forward exchange. This isn't a huge gift, just a little something to lift your spirits. I don’t know what that gift will be yet and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within 365 days, that is my promise! The only thing you have to do if you like, is in return pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog.

Friday, August 10, 2007


Funny how when you are on vacation you are not so thankful for Fridays!
It just brings you a little bit closer to going back to work. Here is the Patchwork bag from Easy knitted accessories after felting. I really love this bag and think I will be making different versions of it. It's about 11" x 11" after felting. The handles are felted braided of yarn - much faster than I-cord!


Over on Shut Up I'm Counting, Cass is celebrating her 222th post with a contest. All you have to do is answer a few easy peasy questions. You can even get some bonus points - go find out how.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Thank You Vicki!

Isn't this cute? It's a wrist wallet that Vicki sent me from Canada. Vicki was my upstream pal in the ITEIII swap and we have become good friends. She knit this from handspun yarn (she raises alpacas) and even lined it and put a zipper in it. And can you see? I'm a Rockin' Girl Blogger (private j0ke) It will hold a cell phone, credit card, and some cash - all the essentials when you don't want to carry a purse. Thanks Vicki - I love it!

Saturday, August 04, 2007

I Love Alpacas

I think I want to raise alpacas when I grow up! They are such sweet, gentle, animals. And...their fleece is the softest and warmest ever. Alpaca farms seem to be sprouting up all over Maine. I visited this one today and met the sweetest alpaca! My friend Vicki on Purple is a Fruit raises alpacas and spins their wool. Alpaca people just seem to be the nicest people, and they love their alpacas like their own children!

Mandy over on NH Knitting Mama is having a little contest She has a free pattern for her "Mandy's Candy Bag" which is really cute. Go on over and check it out. I plan to make a few of these! And you know what else? She's a Red Sox Fan!!!!! Gotta love her.
Progress on my DDs yellow tomato from Knitting Daily:

And my Patchwork bag from "Easy Knitted Accessories" - pre-felted it's 13"x20". I still have to make the handles, which are braided.

Tonight I am casting on for the Comfortable Felted Sling Purse from Knitty Chick, also for my DD.
I'm using these colors, and probably I'll add a little purple too. This is the same bag I made for my pal in the ITEIV Swap except that I made it in a solid color with needlfelted flowers. My DD loved it, but wanted it done in stripes.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Christmas Around the World Knitter's Swap

I try not to join too many swaps at one time. To be honest, I get confused about which pal is which! But my dear friend Vigdis from Norway lured me into this swap. And since ITEIV is just about over, and the KVVS and Whoduknit Summer Swap will be over soon, I joined up. It's the Christmas Around the World Knitter's Swap and sign-ups are open now. Maybe I can lure you in too??