Monday, February 10, 2014

Busy Needles

It’s that time of year when the cold weather descends with a vengeance and compels me to pick up my needles and find a skein of yarn.  Yes, almost all of my spare time has been dedicated to needlework these last several weeks.  I love it!  There is nothing more satisfying than saying, “I made it!”

My dear husband tolerates these forays into the fiber world with amazing composure, although I am sure he would like to toss all that yarn out into the yard at times.  The couch is my main work station, although you can also find half-finished projects in other rooms (like the schoolroom) where I can work on them while away from my main station. 

I thought I would share a few projects that I have finished as well as peeks at a few that aren’t finished yet.  I am also going to share my much-coveted Rainbow Ripple afghan pattern, for all of you who want to make one for yourselves!  :)

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This delicious wool/silk/mohair self-striping yarn was a gift from a friend.  I learned several new knitting techniques while doing this scarf, and I was vastly pleased with the results.  I love how the  colors just blend into one another!  (Casablanca by Cascade)

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Here is the finished product.

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The awesome thing about this scarf is that it goes with so many different outfits!  All you have to do is twist the scarf around so that the color you want is showing, and voila! (Right here and now I am going to mention my complete intolerance for people who do not know how to spell voila and insist on using it anyway in their blog posts, texts, etc.  It is NOT spelled wa-la, wahlah, or even wallah!  If you are going to use a foreign word, please spell it correctly… or any word, for that matter.)  Okay – the lecture is over.  You can go back to reading now.

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Here is another side of it.  Please ignore the unfolded laundry on my bed at the time of this photo.  Anyway, you get the point!  I love this new scarf, and it is so warm, too!

Then while I was trolling through Instagram (follow me there @rvmamacrow), I saw another lovely scarf that I just had to make – the Tuesday Night Cowl (  It had all these lovely cables and I knew I had to try it.  I used dark gray wool for this, and it turned out so well that I will probably end up making another one in a different color!

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Here it is in the mid-stage of creation.  See all those lovely tucks and folds?!  Yum!

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I even finished it on Tuesday night!  Well, almost.  It was a little into Wednesday morning, technically!

Of course, I have also been keeping up on the #crochetmoodblanket2014 project.  I am really enjoying that, and my blanket is getting larger all the time.  I think we will be able to use it as an RV cover when I am finished!

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This is my latest picture of the project.  One square each day for the entire year will make a nice blanket.  If you haven’t joined the movement, it’s not too late!

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This is the month of January – looking pretty good!

I also have a knitted wrap in progress.  It is taking me a long time, though, because I keep getting distracted by all these side projects like the Fisherman’s Ring granny squares (see further down).  This is not the first one I have made, but it was several years ago when I made the other one, and I would like to think that my knitting skills have improved in that time!  Here is is in all of its unfinished glory.

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Not the greatest picture of it, but you can see where it is heading.  It has to be about 64” long.  Only about 40 more inches to go at this point.

Here is a better picture of the yarn color. (Red Heart Soft in Seafoam)

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Then I found the Fisherman’s Ring pattern by Priscilla Hewitt.  I had to try it.  And I love it.  So I have plans to make another blanket with these squares.  I need to stop exploring all these needlework sites – I have more ideas than I will ever be able to finish!  It sure is fun, though!

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So, let the snow fly and the wind roar.  At our house, we will be snug and warm in all the crocheted and knitted goodies I have made this winter! 

And now you can make a lovely afghan, too, with this Rainbow Ripple afghan pattern!  Some of you have asked about it, and I finally got around to writing it down.  Here are some pictures (I made two of these this past year).

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Without further ado, here is the pattern:

Rainbow Ripple Afghan – Sarah Crow

Hook size: I (4.5 mm)

Yarn: 1-7 oz. skein each of white, pink, red, orange, yellow, green, lt blue, dark blue, and purple (or colors of your choice)


Decrease stitch – uses 2 st. YO, insert hook in stitch indicated and pull up a loop. Draw through two loops (two loops remaining on hook), YO, insert hook in next stitch, pull up a loop, draw through two loops (3 loops remaining on hook), draw through remaining 3 loops.

Chain 209

Foundation row: Turn, 2 dc in 4thch from hook (ch3 counts as 1st dc). Dc in next 3 ch, work 2 decrease stitches, *dc in next 2 ch, work (dc, ch 1, dc)in next two stitches, dc in next 2 ch, work 2 decrease stitches, repeat from * across to last 4 st. Dc in next 3 st, 3 dc in last st.

Row 2: Turn, ch 3 (counts as 1st dc), 2dc in same st. Dc in next 3 dc, work 2 decrease st, *dc in next 2 dc, dc in ch 1 sp, work (dc, ch 1, dc) in next two dc, dc in next ch 1 sp, dc in next 2 dc, work 2 decrease st, repeat from * across to last 4 st. Dc in next 3 dc, 3 dc in last dc.

Finish off. Change color. Repeat Row 2 twice for each color stripe until you have repeated the rainbow pattern 3-4 times. Finish off, weave in ends, and enjoy!

Now go get  a hook and get busy!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Welcome, 2014!



It seems that each year flies by faster and faster, and that the upcoming year approaches more rapidly than the previous one.  I can hardly believe that we are already in 2014!  The holidays at our home were especially sweet, with showers of unbelievable blessing falling upon us.  It was a wonderful end to a rather difficult year for us, and I am thankful for God’s miraculous provision.

We had a first – a Christmas eve party.  It was just our family, and a low-key, fun time for everyone.  Of course, we had all kinds of yummy party food that everyone enjoyed.


Then we opened a mystery package which contained goodies for the whole family – new PJ’s, a special ornament for each child, and a movie to watch together.  I think it will be a new tradition.


For New Year’s Day, we spent some time with new friends, and enjoyed getting to know them better.  We also enjoyed getting to know this yummy dessert pizza.


This is our last school-free weekend, so Monday, we will hit the books again.  Trying to keep a smile on my face as I think about this…  The kids are no more excited about it than I am, but we will all manage just fine.  I know they will be glad when summer comes and they get out in the beginning of  May. 

In addition to all of my holiday baking and traditional sewing (doll dresses for each of my girls each year), I spent a great deal of time sewing, crafting and brainstorming with my friend Kristen while we were home.  We set up an Etsy shop for all of our goodies, so if you are looking for some nice handmade items, visit us and look around a bit.  We are currently adding to our collection, and not everything is posted, but keep an eye out for new things!  Our shop name is AllThingsLovely4.



We left our house right after Christmas, so un-decorating was a bit rushed.  After being out of the trailer for several weeks, it is almost like moving when we have to load up again.  I always worry about leaving something important behind, especially when we are in a rush.  Of course, that would never be because I procrastinated.  Never.  :)

Long road trips are great for making large projects, and I am almost done with my latest project – another rainbow ripple afghan.  The colors are so happy and bright that it cheers me just to look at it.  I have one more repeat  and then it will be done.  I might do two, if I have enough yarn.  I ran out of yarn the other day and had to buy more of a weird shade of blue.  Matching yarn is not one of my favorite  things to do.


Speaking of yarn, I started a year-long project – the crochet mood blanket for 2014.  Simply put, you choose a color each day (or week) that represents how you feel, and make a block.  At the end of the year, you will have an afghan as well as a mood calendar.  My husband just smirks when I talk about it.  I can hear him thinking, “Females.  A mood blanket?!?  What will they come up with next?”  That’s okay.  He hasn’t actually said anything, so when it is finished, I might let him use it.  Ha!  I think the hardest part was choosing the colors I wanted.  Michael’s was having a huge sale, so I got 13 different colors as well as white for the outside blocks and joining.  I don’t know that I will actually have that many moods, but that is beside the point.  I find it hard to resist a pretty yarn, especially when it is on sale, and I can justify using it for a fun project.  The only thing that is killing me is that it will take a whole year to finish it.  I do not like long, drawn-out projects.  I understand that breaking it into small pieces makes it easier for some people to complete the task, but I can tell you that, around March, I am going to be so tempted to finish all the blocks and put it away.  Forget March – I already feel that way. :)


I chose a  retro circle pattern that is so adorable!  I already love the blanket, and it isn’t even big enough to cover both of my hands! 


The colors so far are bright and cheery, and I can’t wait to see the finished project.  I was dragging the yarn around in a huge bag, spilling it on the living room floor, and getting it tangled around things.  Something had to change.  While I was at Hobby Lobby, they had all their Christmas things on clearance for 80% off, and I found a giant round decorative box (I have a weakness for those boxes, anyway) that I knew would be perfect for my mood blanket yarn.  I also stocked up on wrapping paper and tissue paper for next year.  I was feeling pretty thrifty after that trip!   Here is my newly organized #crochetmoodblanket 2014 yarn.  Hooray for adorable storage!


We are in sunny south Florida this week, and our meeting starts Sunday.  We are praying for great things to happen, and know that God’s Word will not return void.  In the meantime, I am enjoying the warm weather and the chance to wear sandals again.  Of course, I had to repaint my toenails, since it had been about three months since my last paint job and I had about a half inch of paint on my big toenails – all the other toes were bare.  Shameful, I know.  It gave me a good reason to stop everything and paint my toenails in a fresh new color for the new year!


Well, this has been a huge catch-up post, since it has been forever since my last blog post.  Hopefully things will settle down a bit and my news will become regular again.  Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas season and a Happy New Year!  Looking forward to what this year will bring.