Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A hard day's work.

Piper came to work with me today. She was hard at work being a social butterfly and a saleswoman all day. She managed to sell 89 boxes of girl scout cookies between 8am and 2pm. You gotta love a girl who hustles.

The result: a nap (that included snoring) on the subway ride home.

Happy New Years Eve! Stay safe all you party peeps.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Yay, they're done!

Good news: I finished the second arm warmer last night and it has fewer mistakes than the first!

Bad news: Piper wants a pair in purple. I have to start all over. :P
Back to work today after a week off. Vacation weeks always go soooooo fast.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

So much for no yarning

Remember how I said I was going to read and watch movies this weekend and not touch a hook? Well, not much reading has gotten done, I have watched a sickening amount of Lifetime/Hallmark movies and have not touched a hook. But the yarn is not far. I've been practicing my knitting.

I worked on this little swatch all day yesterday. I knit, I frogged, I purled, I cursed, repeat. I'm finally getting satisfied with my tension, though there are mistakes and it needs a lot of practice.

You'd think I'd be satisfied to keep working on this, but no. I got bored of that little swatch very quickly and started THIS late last night (like 1 am late). The pattern said "perfect for a first project" so I said hell with it and jumped in.

By this evening (and 4 or so more cheesy movies), I've got one arm warmer complete. Its riddled with mistakes, but I am pretty damn proud of myself. Now I need to find the courage to start the second one.

I think I really might like this knit thing. Except for binding off...that was getting-drilled-at-the-dentist kinda scary. So whaddya think? Is there hope for me and the sticks?

Knitter friends...are there any beginner friendly patterns you would suggest?

Friday, December 26, 2008

The mess...

Santa was good to us this year and this was the mess left over from Christmas morning. My obsessive compulsive nature kicked in right after I took that pic and I cleaned up immediately. I guess I am like my mother in some ways.

I got some great gifts, most of them craft related. My favorite is this shirt my hubby bought. The crossbones are crochet hooks, LOL. He thought of that all by himself...pretty impressive. I also got a knitting needle set. It makes circular and flexible straight needles. I don't exactly know what either of those are used for, but I'll figure it out. Looks like I'm going to be concentrating on the sticks now that the Christmas rush is over.

I'm looking forward to a few days without hooking, baking, or rushing. I'm going to crawl into bed, read, watch crappy Lifetime movies and read.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!!!

**This is a scheduled post, so we are probably opening gifts at the moment. Pics of the gift opening frenzy to follow later. :) **

Happy Birthday Jesus and Merry Christmas my blogging buddies!

Yesterday, we finished up the last of the baking...Pecan Tassies. These take a bit more effort than the other cookies but are worth it in the end. My mom and sisters specifically requested these this year.

(If you want the recipe to this one, I'll have to type it out, so let me know if you do want it).

The sweets all wrapped up and ready to go...

I finished my very last crochet gift at 11pm. That's the closest I've ever been to the wire and I never want to be that close again! Talk about stressful.
This is the unisex Oluchi hat by Donna Okoro, made for my sister's boyfriend. I might as well call him my brother in law, since he's been dating my sis for 4 years.

Here's the hat with the matching scarf. Its a simple dc scarf. Ch. 203, dc into the 4th ch. from hook and dc evenly for 11 rows.

Have a wonderful and blessed day everyone!!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Twas the Night Before Christmas

Don't forget to leave out the cookies holmes!

Baking Part Deux

Yesterday Pi and I buckled down and baked some more. We made these Peanut Butter cookies. This is the easiest and fastest recipe ever. Seriously. They're so good, that I've got a second batch for us to keep in the oven right now. Recipe is HERE.

We also made gingerbread cookies. I used a mix, because ginger cookies by hand is somewhat of a challenge for me, so no recipe to share, sorry. I bought icing pens and Pi decorated the ginger men and women. I bought the gel ones by mistake, but Pi didn't care, so all was well.

Here are the cookies in all their glory, waiting to go to their new homes on Christmas Day. I'm shocked I found this many large tupperware containers and cookie tins in my cabinets. This doesn't include the batch of Pecan Tassies that I've got cooling on the metal rack right now (pics of those later).

In huge news (for me anyway), I finished my sister's Christmas present! Its a round ripple in 2 shades of purple. Violet and Lilac Caron pounders. I used Aggie May's pattern (which you have to PM her at Crochetville to get the pattern).

It measures 66 inches from point to point and took 3 and a half pounder to complete. The last 8 rounds of the violet took an entire pounder alone. As I worked on the outer rounds, I thought it would never be done, since each round was taking over an hour each! So glad its done...phew. Its also safe to post the gift since my darling sister is currently on her way back from sunny Jamaica. Lucky bum!

For the cookies, from yesterday, here are the recipes:

Chocolate Chip recipe HERE
Sugar Cookie recipe HERE

All I've got left to finish is the hat and scarf for my sis' boyfriend. Can I do it today? Let's hope!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Baking Frenzy has begun!

I squirreled away some vacation days so that I could take these 3 days before Christmas off. I'm using these 3 days to finish making gifts and bake!! My family asked me to bake for them again this year, so yesterday began the baking frenzy.

First Pi and I made 2 dozen chocolate chip cookies. Yum! The recipe was pretty simple and they were done in no time.

We saw an idea on Paula Dean's cookie show last week. She took sugar cookies, dyed one half red, rolled them together, and stuck a popsicle stick in them to make a pinwheel peppermint lollipop like cookie.

We tried the same thing and although mine aren't round like hers were and turned out much larger, I'm really happy with them. Not bad for my first try.

I wrapped them in plastic wrap and added some curling ribbon to make them look pretty. I rolled the leftover scraps into balls and stuck those together to make a flower cookie for Piper. Its the one on the upper right corner.

On today's agenda are peanut butter hershey kiss cookies and gingerbread men. I'm also nearly done with my sister's gift and hope to post it tomorrow. After that all I have left to do is a hat and scarf for her boyfriend. I hope I can finish in time!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Relief, oh relief!

I'm feeling quite relieved because Mom's scrapghan is all done! Yeah, baby! This bad boy took over a year - with lots of emotion and tears - to complete! I forgot to measure it before wrapping it up, but it fits the entire width and length of a queen size bed.

My friend Janet sent me the most amazing surprise in the mail. Its a gorgeous watch.

The time piece is removable because the other side of the watch is a bracelet that Janet made with beads. So you can switch the time piece with any other beaded bracelet. How cool is that?

Please forgive the dark pictures. Its been storming in NY the last few days and the light is terrible. After Friday's storm, everything has been iced up.

Today, its raining instead of snowing. Hopefully that will wash away the ice and yuckiness outside.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Hats, hats, and more hats!

I meant to post these earlier in the week, but life has sped up to the point that I can barely keep up. Last night, I was supposed to wrap gifts, blog, and work on my sister's gift that is 90% completed. I decided to take a quick nap so I could be refreshed and awake while I did all that stuff. Yeah right! I fell asleep at 8pm and woke up at 7am this morning! Now I'm really behind.

Here are the hats I made for my mom and sister. The hats are all the Divine hat pattern. I showed them all sorts of patterns but they really liked this one.

Mom is giving her hats away to the teachers at the twins' school.

My 20 y/o sis is giving hers as a gift to her boyfriend's mother.

My sis also asked for a matching scarf for the blue one. Its the same scarflette pattern I've been using over and over this fall.

I received some awesome mail in the last few days that I want to show too, but I need to wait for better light to take pictures.
Send crochet mojo this way please. I am SO behind and Christmas is just around the corner! Gah!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Noah's Ark Baby Blanket

My co-worker Rosanna is due to have a baby in January and we threw a baby shower for her yesterday. It was originally supposed to be held last Friday, but she unexpectedly took the day off, so we had to move it. Good thing we're flexible!

I made the Noah's Ark Baby blanket from the May 2008 issue of Crochet! I don't subscribe to Crochet and had no idea this pattern existed until a really nice lady ROAKed it to me a few months ago. When I saw the afghan on the cover, I knew I had to make it. It was a lot of fun to make all the different animals and I love the way it turned out.

Because of the afghan, my theme for my gift was Noah's Ark.

I also made a pair of Little Button Loafers (you're going to get tired of seeing these, ha!) and included a stuffed giraffe (store bought).

Also included were some adorable burp cloths that I got from my talented blogging buddy Andrea!
Being as ark's aren't really sold in my local neighborhood stores, I settled for the next best thing, a basket.

The gift went over really well. People started to applause. Uhhh...I'm used to non-crocheters responding to it with a lukewarm reaction at best, so I was freaked out a little. I asked them to please stop. LOL. Really embarrassing!
I also baked some awesome chocolate cupcakes with butter cream frosting and chocolate chips on top.
Overall, the shower was a success! Now, we're starting the baby pool. Sex, weight, and date of birth are the things that need to be guessed. Winner wins half the pot with the other half going to the baby. Fun stuff.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Words a husband should never say.

Your cheeks are big like a squirrel.


Sunday, December 14, 2008

Gettin' Festive

Over here at the K household, we decided it was time to get festive and that means putting up a Christmas tree!!!

Friday night we headed over to the Knights of Columbus hall, where they sell trees, wreaths, and other decorations. We did the rounds and inspected all the trees. We finally settled on this gem, who isn't too tall but is super full and round. I love it even better than last year's tree!

We don't have much table space, so we've got a teeny tiny Nativity Set. Notice that baby Jesus isn't in the manger yet. We're not supposed to put him in until Christmas morning, since that's when we celebrate His birth.

This standing Santa was a raffle prize that my dad won a few years ago. It used to dance, but it broke and it won't dance anymore. He didn't want it anymore and Pi took pity on the crippled Santa, so she brought it home. It makes a good decoration, as long as you don't touch it. LOL

Last but not least...what would a New York Christmas tree be without a Mets bell? This ornament makes my hubby twitch, heehee.

Thanks for the ornament Dad!

In other news, I've been flying through finished objects! In the biggest news, I finished my mom's scrapghan (yay!) but haven't gotten pics yet. The hats for my mom and sister are also done, just waiting for pics too. I finished up some baby things too for a baby shower tomorrow and will be spending a good chunk of today baking cupcakes for the shower. Wish me luck!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Photo Trade

A few weeks ago, a photographer named Samantha Adams contacted me through Etsy. She must have noticed my pics were far from professional and offered to do a photo trade. The deal was that I'd send her an item she could keep in exchange for a photo and the rights to use in it my shop, blog, etc. for free. I thought this was a pretty sweet deal, especially since I don't have a baby model, and took her up on it.

Here are just a few of the many photos she sent me...

Little Button Loafers.

Baby Papoose

Granny Square Pom Pom hat

This last one is my newest design. I call it the Bubble Baby Pixie Bonnet but am open to suggestions for a new name. I still need to get the pattern tested.

I'm really happy with the pics. How can I not be with all those cute babies? I love babies! LOL Samantha is also really easy to work with. If anyone is interested in working with Samantha, let me know and I'll forward your contact info to her.

P.S. - I'm hoping to get my Christmas Tree today. Sooooo excited!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Deja Vu

I apologize in advance because you are going to be sooo(!!) bored with me.

I've been working on more scarves like these. My aunt asked me to make 2 more of these for her in Charcoal and Autumn Vanna's yarn.

Work has been so crazy lately that I haven't had the time to do anything else that's blog worthy right now. A girl's allowed to be boring every once in awhile, right?

I'm going to be on a hat making frenzy over the next few days, since my mom and sister have asked me to make a total of 4 for them.

And what's up with nearly 60 degree weather in December?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Say what?

Piper spent part of the weekend with her dad, so I took advantage of the free time to finish her Christmas shopping. I did some at-the-store shopping, but there were a few places I wasn't stupid enough to go to in person, like Toys R Us. While browsing the website, and very happy about free shipping, I notice this:

Sperd? Sperd! Looks like Toys R Us needs to learn to use the spell-checker.

On a happy note, all of my Christmas shopping is done. I'm still working on Mom's scrapghan. The weaving in of ends is going really slowly because I hate it, but it is making progress. I thought it'd be done this weekend, but I'm giving myself another week.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Newest Obsession

Coffee cup cozies!! Honestly, when I first saw these being used I thought they were silly...until I tried one for myself. I'm converted!

Its a lot more comfy (and green...even though I honestly don't make a habit of really trying to be green out of pure laziness) than the cardboard ones you get from a coffee shop.

Its like potato chips. You can't have or make just one.

The guy who makes my morning cup o' joe complimented me on it. I think he's just happy I don't ask for cardboard or a paper bag anymore. LOL

This beige and and brown one got adopted by a girl at work when she saw me showing them to my other fiber addicted co-worker.

P.S. - That's a Dunkin Donuts cup there because DD kicks Starbucks butt any day!

P.P.S - Why does the spell check on blogger always screw up my spacing? Le Grr.

P.P.P.S - This could be classified as Christmas gift avoidance.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Another Christmas Gift Down!

Another Christmas Gift down. Yipee!

This is for my dad. My mom not-so-subtly hinted that he'd like a scarf in brown and tan, so here we are. The scarf is just ch. 203, dc in each dc across, ch. 3, turn, dc across for about 9 rows. The hat is the Easy Beanie pattern by CroJulee. Its true to the name...easy and quick.

I did have a mini heart attack as I was adding the fringe. The brown was running out and I didn't think I'd have enough to make it look even. Luckily, there was just enough...literally just enough. I'd say there was only about 2 inches left over. Disaster barely averted.

He'll be getting this along with a Heineken keg. Yep, a keg. My mom is getting him one of the beer keg cooler devices, so my sister and I thought kegs would be good accompanying gifts.

No worries, dear old dad doesn't read my blog. I guess my adventures in crafting aren't up his alley. LOL

Only 99 projects to finish in time, 99 projects to finish...if one of those projects should happen to frog, 98 projects to finish in time! I might be slightly delirious with Christmas project stress.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

American Doll Birthday

Piper and I were invited to celebrate my cousin Michaela's 9th birthday this past Sunday. Her parents booked a tea party for her at the American Girl Cafe. Swanky!

If you don't own an American Girl doll, which Piper doesn't, they'll lend you one with a high chair. Pi got to pick from a whole stack of them. The waitress brought out a mini tea set to match the full sized ones on the table.

The whole place was decked out in pink, black and white. They even had a harp player. Umm, I've never even been to an adult restaurant with a harp player.

They served your tea in miniature individual teapots. I thought those were cute.

The birthday cake and ice cream was peppermint flavored. I usually love peppermint, but I wasn't a fan of it here. It looked pretty.

After the tea party, the girls looked around the store. Its huge...3 floors of nothing but (overpriced) dolls and their accessories. Michaela's parents bought her a Samantha doll and Piper got one of the mini 6 inch Felicity one.

Pi wants an American Girl for Christmas which just makes my wallet groan. My grandfather agreed to get her one, but that means I'm going to have to spring for some of the accessories. I'm going to scour Etsy for some cute handmade doll clothes. I'd rather buy handmade doll clothes than buy from the store if I can.
The girls loved it and thought it was great, but personally, I thought it was a bit much for such young girls. Pi is begging me to do the same thing for her birthday. July is a long time away and I'm hoping she'll forget about it by then.
On the crochet front, I took a break from Mom's scrapghan and made
something for a blogger buddy. Its on the way to her house and its a surprise, so you don't get to see it until she gives the A-OK. Also, for Joyce, Bezzie, Lesa, and Jen...your ornaments are on the way!