Friday, September 7, 2018

Books, blogs and a good day for crafting!

I really have been meaning to be better about blogging but I must admit my priority is downsizing and you have no idea what a HUGE project it is! LOL!  But I have managed (thanks to the book How to Manage Your House Without Losing Your Mind by Dana K. White) to implement her strategies of how to de-clutter without making a bigger mess and it is working!  Also, I have not fallen behind in cooking or daily chores or laundry...Amazing!  But today I will catch you up on my reading, blogs and what I've been watching.
I haven't forgotten that my word this year was FINISH and it has been in the forefront of my mind each day.  I try to find something each day to finish be it a book, a magazine, or a handwork or craft project.  Even a decorating project...something that is done once and not a repeated task.  I can't find something each day but being mindful and always on the lookout for a 'finish' has helped me stay focused at least.
Since the last time I blogged about books I have finished this was good and I enjoyed it.
**** 4 of 5
I finished this one and the writing was very good and the story line was interesting and rural which I love but I thought it was going someplace but ended and I didn't 'get it'.  One of 'those' books although it could be just me.  It seemed like it just stopped with no plot or future or reason....strange.  
*** 3 of 5

These mysteries are a hoot and very enjoyable with always a ghostly presence but friendly....there are murders but nothing too grisly and recipes too!  Easy, enjoyable, pleasant books to read before bed.  This is the 2nd book in the series.  The first was If Fried Chicken Could Fly.
**** 4 out of 5
 I bought another magazine and finished reading it along with the last National Geographic......this is a beautiful magazine with all kinds of mouth watering recipes.....a keeper to bring out every Fall!
So, what am I reading now you ask?  Back to a few I need to FINISH (there's that word again!).........
I've read parts of this and was reading one chapter and then implementing their suggestions but now I am just going to read it all the way through and keep it as a reference.  Their actual budget system sounds good but also very time consuming and I'm not sure I'd stick to it....we'll see.........they have lots of other topics though and great suggestions on how to cut costs.  Some of which I already do.  Highly recommend if you are wanting to save some money or just want a method for tracking your spending and budgeting for those 'bucket list' items. 
I stopped reading this as I was wanting to finish a library book and also one I had previously started so now I am back to it....very good and should finish soon.  I also noticed that this is a series and there are 2 more books after this one.  I think I am about 1/2 way finished.
I am reading this historical fiction about Rose Wilder Lane, Laura Ingalls' daughter who wrote The Little House on the Prairie books.  It is by Susan Wittig Albert who also wrote an historical fiction mystery series about Beatrix Potter which I loved.  This is very good and I am about 1/2 through the book.  This is only fiction because she took liberties with creating conversations among the characters but the story line is based on journals and diaries and her own research.
That's all for my reading except for an audio book I am listening to..........
Amazon states:"Why does talk in families so often go in circles, leaving us tied up in knots? In this illuminating book, Deborah Tannen, the linguist and and bestselling author of You Just Don't Understand and many other books, reveals why talking to family members is so often painful and problematic even when we're all adults."
I've had this tape for years so I am trying to listen to my tapes so I can pass them on or sell them in my garage sale.  It's good information and we can all communicate better but I'm sort of past the point of self-improvement.....not that I can't  use it....but I've been down that road and I'm pretty happy with myself after all these many years! I'm sure not everyone would agree with me but some people are never!  
As for my Good Reads Challenge...I have read 41 of 75 books so far this year.....I need to get a 'move on'!
Video-wise, I watch the news and then usually podcasts of knitters and makers........I caught up with Stitching the High Notes and Brooklyn Knitfolk and now I am watching The Bakery Bears again and I found a wonderful podcast last night called Mischief Maker.....Jade Prosser from Vancouver, BC who does beautiful knitting and sewing and crochet....she also dyes yarn, makes project bags and has several bag and quilt patterns on Craftsy!  She's amazing and I highly recommend her podcast.   That's all for now.....I wish I could watch football....both college and NFL but I would have to get satellite again and I am too cheap! LOL!  I am able to listen to games using and also so if any of you are in the same boat give it a try!  Please share what you are reading, listening to and/or watching!
Happy Trails!!!
P.S.  I think Fall is coming to the's been really hot and dry but now it is going down to the low 80's and today it is pouring rain.  There are flash flood warnings but I don't worry as the lake has a spillway and I am cozy and dry here.....even my porch! LOL! 
P.S.P.S  I forgot to mention 1) there is a site called The Library Thing where you can catalogue your books for free up to 200 books and after that there is a charge and 2) The BBC has a list of 100 of their readers favorite books called The Big Read. 

Sunday, September 2, 2018

YOP Week #10

 This was a good week all around.  I didn't blog as much or visit but I have a garage sale coming up and I am really de-cluttering and going through things so it takes time.   But progress is being made on the home front! 
Here are my goals from last week:
1)  Merry Monday XS - Yes, this got worked on last's nearing the finish soon........

2)  finish sock #2 - YES!!!!  We have a finish folks!  The bottom sock got stretched out by the 1 sock blocker I have when I showed it as the first sock finished.  I used Cherry Heart's My First Socks pattern without the patterned design part.  All details for my projects are usually on my projects page in Ravelry.  If not or if you have a question just ask me and I'll get back to you in the reply to your comment.  I knit very tightly so I use a 2.75 circular needle with a 32" cable.  The yarn is Knit Pick's Felici self-striping fingering weight in the Hibiscus colorway.

3)  Finish the next pattern repeat on the Falling Leaves scarf (20 rows) -  I did my 20 rows and have reached the halfway part of the scarf where you put it on waste yarn and make the second half of the scarf and then  connect the 2 halves by Kitchener stitch.  I have learned so much with this pattern plus I love the chart reading (this one anyway) and instead of stitch markers I use post-it notes to keep my place on the chart and a charm that I move to the next 'grouping' of stitches in the row.  Anyway, it works for me and I have not had to use my life line.....yet!  Nice to know it's there though!  This scarf will definitely need a good blocking when done.  It is very soft and silky and lightweight.  There is a total of 160 rows so 1/2 the scarf has been 80 rows.
4)  Cut material for next pickle dish- nope, I know I said I was going to but don't believe me anymore! LOL!
5) work on Witchy Wednesday x-stitch - yes......I worked on this on Wednesday.....the Button-Eyed Cat...........

6) work on Fall Friday x-stitch - this didn't get too much attention but it got some............It's my Pumpkin Spice Farm cross stitch...................

7) work on Stars and Stripes Saturday x-stitch -  This got lots of love yesterday as I watched John McCain's funeral ceremony at the National Cathedral in Washington D.C. all morning while working on was very fitting that by the time the ceremony was over I had completely stitched AMERICA.....the country he loved so in peace John.........

8) work on Santa Sunday x-stitch - I'm on a roll here...........this is what I got done last Sunday......I'll be working on it again tonight.............something went wonky with the house in front but I'm not going to rip it out.....

9) work on hexies for Pickle Dish block #3 - since I didn't cut any material no hexies got made.........
10)  look for sewing pattern for pajamas for me - Found it!!!!  Yay!  Plus the clearing out and organizing is uncovering more treasures!  This pattern should do me for all my pajama needs....summer and winter!  I think I already have flannel but I'll have to check if I have enough.
I also found some other 'treasures'...didn't even have to go shopping or spend any money!  I guess this will be my next Stars and Stripes cross stitch project....
 This one is just in time for Halloween after my Button Eyed cat.............I used to go to the Amana's (Amana Colonies) in Iowa where I lived and it was only about 15 minutes from my house out in the country.  There was a needlework shop there and I remember getting these patterns there.  The Amana Colonies (there are 7 of them...villages really) are where Amana appliances are made although I think they were bought out by Whirlpool now and left.  They are an old German settlement and you can still get great German family style meals and breakfast there for reasonable prices.  I digress!  Took a little walk down memory lane there! LOL! 
I also found these 2 patterns which are note cards that came with a pattern by Carol Andres whose designs I love........they're felted wool applique and I need to get back to that!  Fun little projects these will be for this winter..............
I have finally caught up with Stitching the High Notes podcast and will catch up on Brooklyn Knitfolk tonight then there's The Bakery Bears which I have never caught up with! LOL!
Stitching the High Notes and Once Upon a Corgi are having their annual Pumpkin MAL (make a long)  and I am going to participate this year.  Please join in!  I am trying to figure out what to make....part of me says "easy does it" and then another part of me says "stretch yourself"...what to do?
 I have been wanting to learn color work for quite awhile and I fell in love with these mittens! Pumpkin Spice Latte mittens!  Look at those beautiful mitten blockers too!  Skeindeer Knits is the designer and this is a pay for pattern.  It wasn't rated difficult or anything but not sure if it is exactly beginner level either but love can be a powerful motivator!  I will decide this week and get the yarn ordered for whatever project I chose.

Here are my goals for this coming week:  (no more than 10 per week as I usually don't even get those done!)
1)  Merry Monday XS
2)  start next sock using Sockmatician's Toe Up pattern and here's the yarn I already had on hand......
 3)  Start the second half of the Falling Leaves scarf (20 rows of 80)
4)  Cut material for next pickle dish
5) work on Witchy Wednesday x-stitch
6) work on Fall Friday x-stitch
7) work on Stars and Stripes Saturday x-stitch
8) work on Santa Sunday x-stitch
9) work on hexies for Pickle Dish block #3
10)  find or order flannel material for pajamas to sew and all required additional supplies...kit up!  

That should do it for this week folks!  I hope you had a wonderful week and enjoyed working on your projects.  Please stop by and see all the other fantastic projects that other  YOP'ers are working on.
Happy Labor Day to my U.S. friends!
Happy Trails!!!