Friday, October 7, 2016 0 comments

Etsy: A Cowl and a Scarf

I just listed two more items in my Etsy shop and thought I'd share them here, in case you're shopping for your fall or winter wardrobe.



This cowl is almost identical to one that I made for myself and absolutely LOVE.

It is made from polyester yarns. The inside fuzzy part was knit, while the outside dangling part was crocheted.

This is a very full scarf/cowl that will make a wonderful statement piece for your wardrobe.

It measures approximately 82" around the inside, so there is plenty of room for any size woman. I am an XS and like it best triple-looped (as shown), but it would easily work for plus-sized gals just double-looped.



You can find it in my shop here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/470394456/bright-pink-infinity-scarf



This scarf is also made from polyester yarn. It measures approximately 80" long, but it isn't as full because I only used one type of yarn.



This would be perfect if you prefer your scarves to be slightly less full.

You can find this one in my shop here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/483891263/bright-pink-dangle-scarf

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Thursday, September 29, 2016 0 comments

Etsy: Hazelnut Mocha Cabled AG Sweater



I finished another doll sweater and it's live in the shop now.



This one features a cable design in the front and a foldover cowl neck.



There are cables running the length of the 3/4-length sleeves, too.



If you'd Iike to add this to your collection, you can find it in my shop here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/482168143/handknit-hazelnut-mocha-cabled-sweater

posted from Bloggeroid

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Ice Blue AG Sweater in the Shop

I just added the first of several 18" doll sweaters to my Etsy shop. I love to knit these sweaters, and I hope they bring some little girls hours of pleasure.



This is an ice blue cabled sweater, perfect for those chilly nights of ice skating ahead.



It features a double cable design in the front and the back.



There is also a cable running the length of each arm.

If you'd like to add this sweater to your doll's (or daughter's) collection, you can find it in my shop here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/481894381/handknit-ice-blue-cabled-sweater-for-18

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Tuesday, September 20, 2016 0 comments

Shop Update: Handknit Fall Dishcloth Sets for Sale

It's been a few years since I added anything to my Etsy shop. (I sold all of my vintage sheets when we moved from our previous home.)

Recently I've been bitten by the dishcloth knitting bug and decided to list some sets in my Etsy shop.





The first set is a basketweave design. Bonus: The design is reversible, so it looks good from any angle.

You can find this set in the shop here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/466447098/handknit-basketweave-fall-dishcloth-trio





The second set is a textured design that is good for scrubbing dishes. It's also reversible, looking exactly the same on both sides.

You can find this set in the shop here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/479936897/textured-handknit-fall-dishcloth-trio

Each set is $9 with shipping figured in. They would make an excellent Thanksgiving hostess gift, if you're planning to spend the holiday at someone else's home. Of course, you could just treat yourself to some new dishcloths, too!

If you're interested in different colors for your dishcloths, I'm happy to discuss special orders. You can send me a message on Etsy, if that interests you.

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Tuesday, September 13, 2016 0 comments

Dining Room Focal Point

One of the things that came with the parsonage was an antique organ in the dining room. Since it needs to stay and is a lovely piece, I'm working it into my decor.



We found some grape-themed items at a yard sale that go well with the colors of the room and the overall look of the organ.



Here's a closer picture to make out more of the details:



It goes well with these grapes I got in a bag lot of greenery at a thrift store a few weeks ago:



This arrangement is on the pass-through between the kitchen and dining room.

I love the new decor, and the best thing is that we didn't even need to paint. (Well, that's the best thing according to my husband.) ;)

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Thursday, September 1, 2016 0 comments

Telling it like it is ...



I saw this saying on Pinterest and knew that I needed it for my craft area. I always feel the need to apologize about the "mess" (i.e. work-in-progress) in my craft area, so this will explain for me. (Really, only a non-crafter would expect a spotless craft area, right?)

Anyway, I had a blank canvas sitting around, so I made this myself with a little help from my computer, an overhead projector, and a paint pen. It was really easy!

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Wednesday, August 31, 2016 0 comments

New Living Room Curtains

The curtains that were here when we moved in were very dated. They were also exactly the same throughout the house.



This isn't the living room window, but it was the same basic window treatment, just spanning a double window.

We are also working around someone else's furniture, which (in this case) is a couch from the 80's. Again, it wouldn't be my personal pick, but I'm working with it because it's cheaper than buying another couch and figuring out what to do with this one while we live here.

I said all that to say that I'm working on making do with the more expensive pieces that were here, while changing out less-expensive items (like curtains).

This is the couch I'm working with:



And this is a close-up of the print:



It's not stylish by any means, but it's comfortable and not falling apart. It's even a sleeper sofa, which will be nice if we have overnight guests (since we no longer have a dedicated guest room).

Honestly, brown is about as far from my favorite color as you can possibly get. So I'm playing up the other colors in the couch, hoping to balance that sea of dark brown with some blue.

Imagine my excitement to find these curtains at the thrift store for just $5!



They are the perfect color, and I adore this style (which may "date" me slightly). It brings welcome color relief to my living room, and I'm very grateful!

I have a few more things to do in the living room, but I'll try to remember to share pictures when I'm done.

I hope this helps someone else who is working with furniture that is less than your personal ideal. I'm a firm believer in being as happy as possible with one's current circumstances.

posted from Bloggeroid

Friday, August 26, 2016 0 comments

New-to-Us Curtains

So we've decided we'll be staying here for awhile, and I'm finally able to feel like I can really "move in" and make the space my own.

When we moved in last December, the original curtains that came with the (double-wide) trailer in 1990 were on the windows.



They were very nice in 1990. In 2016, though, they aren't exactly "my thing". So I've set about changing them as I find curtains/window treatments that I like at thrift stores. I may even make a few, if I can't find anything for one of the tougher rooms.

The lone dining room window was the first to be changed, and it made all the difference in the look and feel of the room.



This entire window arrangement was less than $10 at the thrift store, by combining several different packages. The tiebacks were still "new with tags" with an original price of $16.99 each, so I was very happy with our deal!

Browns are not my usual decorating color, but the right shade can be elegant and even relaxing. This is like a dark beige, and I really like it. Besides, there is a beautiful antique pump organ in the room to decorate around (what I'm choosing as the room's focal point), and this looks fabulous with it! Bonus: It matches the walls well, so we don't even need to paint.

posted from Bloggeroid

Friday, August 19, 2016 0 comments

Our New Homeschool Space

Since we moved into this house mid-year last schoolyear, we've been working off the dining room table. It was mainly because I had to worry more about actually getting the work done, rather than thinking (or caring) much about *where* it got done.

While I had the entire summer to think and plan about how to organize things this year, I didn't come up with our new arrangement until the night before we officially started school.



I realized that the only thing this neat table/island thing was doing in my kitchen was collecting a random assortment of things that had no designated space yet.

That certainly wasn't an efficient use of a space that could perfectly fit two workspaces! So I cleared off the miscellaneous things and replaced them with school things that you would keep on your school desk.

Well, I was still planning to hike in our books from the living room until I looked at the overhang at the end of the table space. I measure the height and then checked several microwave-type carts that we have on hand. Sure enough, one was low enough to fit!

So now we have our entire homeschool setup right in our kitchen. I can easily fix a meal while working with them, so it's very convenient.

While I've had much bigger rooms and setups in previous years, I think this scaled-back, cozy setup is my favorite so far.

posted from Bloggeroid

Friday, August 12, 2016 0 comments

Altering Shirts for a Slimmer Fit

My son is tall and thin - much taller and thinner than most guys his age. And since we shop mostly at thrift stores, a lot of times we find an otherwise-perfect shirt that's a bulkier fit.

Up to this point, it has been a source of frustration for my son. He wants a perfectly-fitted shirt, not one that could fit two of him inside. I totally understand, since I have some of the same problems.

I got the idea to take in the shirts at the sides. We experimented with some shirts that were getting a little short in the sleeves (hence the rolled sleeves).

This one started out like this:



It was so big that I have to admit it looked a bit sloppy. When it was tucked, it made him look like he was wearing his dad's shirt (which is a few sizes bigger).

After taking it in almost 3" on each side, it turned out like this:



Perfect! He even likes it tucked now, so that's a grand success in my book.

I just took it in at the existing side seams, tapering off about halfway down the arm.

posted from Bloggeroid

Wednesday, August 10, 2016 0 comments

Changes to My Bullet Journal

I know I said that I preferred to do my bullet journal loose-leaf, but I decided to try a composition notebook just to see how it would go for me.

It has been a week or two, and I actually like it. For one thing, the pages are bigger, so I can record more details. I modified it just a bit by putting all my list/collection pages in the back (starting at the last page and working forward) and all of my dated pages in the front. When they meet, it's time for a new notebook.

I found this graph-lined composition notebook at Wal-Mart for $1.



To get the most mileage out of my index pages, I divided them in half and listed the lists/collections separate from the dated pages. I left 3 full pages for the index, since there are 200 pages in this book.



My current monthly layout looks like this:



I was away for the first few days of the month, so my habit tracker isn't quite up to date.

This is one of the weekly layouts that I tried and liked:



And I experimented with several daily layouts. This is one that I liked:



(The stickies are from Dollar Tree.)

I've found myself journaling more about my days and thoughts now, so that's a good thing.

There are a few special pages sprinkled in my dated pages. One of these is a weekly "brain dump". My mind goes a hundred miles an hour sometimes, and this is very helpful to get everything out on paper so I can prioritize.



And here is one of my collection pages from the back of my notebook:



I add to this list as I run across quotes that I like. I'll end up using some in my bullet journal, but probably not all of them.

I've been enjoying adding a little color to my journal with pens and washi tape, but I'm no artist. As such, my journal will probably never be a work of art. That's fine, though, since that's not why I'm keeping one.

I hope you enjoy these peeks into my bullet journal, and I hope they inspire you to create your own customized planner that's perfect for you. It makes me feel so much less stressed, knowing that I have everything written down, and I love that I can customize it to my own unique needs.

posted from Bloggeroid

Wednesday, July 27, 2016 0 comments

My Treadmill

So I've been thinking lately about how inactive I am. My mind goes a million miles an hour, but my body just sits there while I think.

I've been working on eating healthier for awhile now, but I knew that wasn't enough. I had to add in some activity. I'm getting close to middle age, and tons of health problems run in my family. (So far, so good. But I want to be a wise steward of my body, too.)

Well, I sat down and tried to think of what might work for me. I hate to be hot and sweaty when it's already nearly 100* outside, so I knew walking outside wasn't going to happen in the summer. But I also knew that I could do it if I were in an air-conditioned building with a fan blowing on me. (Please don't judge me too harshly. My rosacea acts up in extreme heat, and it's just not worth it to me.)

The only solution I could come up with was a treadmill. The problem is that we're not in a place to be dumping money into a treadmill right now, new OR used. I had resigned myself to seeing if we could borrow my parents' treadmill until we found a killer deal on one.

That was Monday. Today we were out running errands when my husband decided to stop in at a tiny thrift store I hadn't been to yet. What did we see as soon as we walked in the door?

Yes, you probably guessed it. This:



I took a quick look at it but couldn't determine if it worked, where it might plug in, etc. Then the sales lady told me that someone had just brought it in (no price yet), and it didn't plug in. Your momentum is what makes it go. (This is good, since electrical parts aren't the cheapest things to replace on these things.)

I asked how much it was, and she paused just a moment.

"Oh, how does $5 sound?"

REALLY?! It took me all of five seconds (if that) to tell her I'd take it.

Bonus: It's not a huge, bulky thing, so it will fit nicely into an unoccupied corner of our bedroom.

God came through again, and even I was taken off-guard by this one! He knows what we need before we even ask, and He provides for us when we allow Him to be in control of our finances. As someone has said, "God shovels it in, and I shovel it out. But God has a bigger shovel."

posted from Bloggeroid

Tuesday, July 19, 2016 0 comments

Bullet Journal: What's Working for Me This Week

So far, I'm in love with my bullet journal. I think I've already used it more than I've used any planner since I became a stay-at-home mom. The key to this is the fact that I can design it to fit MY needs, which probably aren't the same as anyone else's needs.

Anyway, I thought I'd share a few things that are working for me, a few that didn't work, some new finds, and a recent page that I especially love.

WHAT'S WORKING

1. Loose leaf - I keep wanting to buy a graph paper composition book ($1 at Wal-Mart), but I honestly don't know if I could stand to have my specialty pages in anything but alphabetical order. I may try it sometime, just to see how it works for me ...

2. Washi tape headers - I found this washi tape at Dollar Tree on clearance because it was supposedly Easter-themed. At 10 meters for $0.50, I may just buy more if they have any left the next time I'm there. I especially love that it makes simple headings a little extra-special without taking a lot of time doodling. The dots make it easier for me to form the letters uniformly, too!



Along that same line, I need to tell you that most pens and markers will not write on washi tape. At least not this kind.

The only thing I could find in my house that would write on it was my trusty Sharpie Ultra Fine Point. (Regular fine-point Sharpies just bead up.)



3. Cheap-ish felt tip pens - I dearly love PaperMate Flair felt-tip pens. I looked around and found some off-brand felt-tip pens at Dollar Tree and Family Dollar. So far, I'm pleased with them. I've been using them longer than the gel pens lasted, so I think they may work for me.



I got this (2/pack) at Dollar Tree. They have both black and blue inks, but in separate packaging.



I got this (2/pack) at Family Dollar. Yes, it does smell great. You can even faintly smell it for awhile after you've written, if you sniff the paper. (Of course, I don't recommend sniffing the marker for any length of time.)

WHAT ISN'T WORKING

The only thing that hasn't worked out recently is a set of gel pens that I bought at Dollar Tree. I wasn't surprised because I've never liked gel pens - not even the expensive ones. I got them as an experiment, and I've already handed them over to my kids. I need ink that flows consistently, and gel pens just don't do that for me.

NEW FINDS

A lady in an online group posted a picture of cute stickies that she found at Dollar Tree recently, and I've been searching for them ever since. While I was out of town recently, I found them and picked up a few of my favorites. I haven't used them just yet, but I'll share when I do.



They're not necessary, but they're fun and add some color and design to a layout with minimal fuss.

A NEW PAGE

I haven't read much since I had kids, but my kids are old enough now that I can read for awhile without them needing me to do things for them. Since it's summer break (from homeschooling), I decided to start reading again.



I used someone else's page as inspiration, and I love how this page turned out! As I read books, I color them in.

I'm feeling more comfortable with where I'm going with all of this, and I'm using pens a lot more. I may trace over this with pens at some point.

Well, that's it for now. I'd love to hear your experiences with bullet journaling, if you've tried it!

posted from Bloggeroid

Friday, July 15, 2016 0 comments

Faith, Family & Friends pillows

I posted last time about the pillows I knit for my sister-in-law. Today I'm sharing the ones I knit for my own living room.



I also made the blue flower pillow at the end, but I haven't made a matching one for the other end yet. I'll try to post about it (with a better picture) when I get the second one finished.

posted from Bloggeroid

Monday, July 11, 2016 0 comments

Faith, Hope, Love Pillows

I recently rearranged furniture and started working on making the color schemes of someone else's furniture more palatable to my tastes. (We're currently filling in at a church with a fully-furnished parsonage, so the color schemes came a bit pre-programmed, at least with the upholstered furniture.)

I had seen pillows with words knit into them and really liked them. Most of the patterns weren't free, so I decided to design my own. They aren't difficult to design, if you've done much colorwork at all.



After I finished them, my husband commented on how perfect they would be for his older sister, who is like a second mom to him. They are the names of her daughters, except she didn't get the third daughter. ;)

Well, they were easy enough to make, so these went to his sister. Fortunately, the color scheme works with her living room, too.

posted from Bloggeroid

Friday, July 8, 2016 0 comments

God provides a bat bag.

I enjoy blogging about these things. I hope you enjoy them, too!

My son went to church youth camp for the first time this year. He loved it! When he came back, he had a list of things that he'd like to have for next year. (He knows I like advance warning so I can look for good deals.)

One of the things he wanted was a bat bag. I'm not a sports type, so I took him to our local sports store so I knew what we were looking for. I know I'm out of touch with regular prices because we shop so much at thrift stores, but I was still shocked at the $40 price tag. I told him we'd look at thrift stores, and our community yard sales were coming up, too.

Well, a week later we were shopping at the community yard sales mid-afternoon when he found a bat bag (the exact brand and style he wanted) in excellent condition. There wasn't a price on it. When we asked, the lady said we could have it for FREE!



We took it home and cleaned it up just a bit, and now that's one less thing to find for youth camp next year.

God is good!

posted from Bloggeroid

Wednesday, July 6, 2016 0 comments

The beginnings of my bullet journal

I was recently introduced to the concept of bullet journaling. As someone who hasn't found her "perfect planner" since leaving the workforce to marry and have children, I was pretty excited at the thought of customizing one to perfectly fit my lifestyle.

I *wasn't* so sure about how decorative some of the journals are getting these days. I enjoy creating, but I'm not an artist. That's the beauty of bullet journaling, though. You can do it how you want to.

So, in typical "me" fashion, I researched tons of layouts, page ideas, and even a few doodles. In the process, I managed to spam my Facebook friends with over 80 pins to a new Pinterest board dedicated to bullet journaling. (Lesson learned: Figure out what those icons mean before pinning 80+ ideas. I think it came pre-programmed to post everything on Facebook, which is really annoying.)

But after a day's research, I knew what I wanted and had a general idea of what layout would work best for me.

For starters, I broke the cardinal rule of bullet journaling: I went loose-leaf. I just can't bear to have reference pages in anything but alphabetical order, and I certainly couldn't bear to have them interspersed with weekly and monthly pages. I put my list-style pages in the back and only use one side of the page (unless the ideas spill over onto the back). This way, I can rearrange them as I get new pages/lists that I want to keep track of.

My second deviation came in the form of pencil - for the moment. Until I know what works well for me, I like to have the freedom to erase what isnt working and redesign it. (I'll probably design the next set of pages in pen, since this layout seems to be a good fit. That's when I'll probably add in more color, too.)

So, here is my monthly page for July:



I took pictures before I added too much personal information. I have added quite a bit already.

I have more room for habits, but I don't want to focus on too many at once. These are the main habits.I want to track for now, and I'll add more as I feel comfortable with it.

I realized that I am a slightly visual person, so I really needed to see the days like a traditional calendar (top left). However, I'm a list-maker at heart, so adding appointments/details in list format (across the bottom) works best for me. Now I have the best of both worlds.

I was surprised at how easy it was to fancy it up a bit with the lettering and a few artistic touches. As I told my daughter, I can copy almost anything. I'm not so good with doodling or drawing straight out of my head.

The next page is a combination gratitude journal/memory log. I plan to write something for each day. I need to catch up on scrapbooks at some point, and this may help jog my memory.



My last page (for now) is my weekly page:



I am trying to drink more water instead of tea, so that's what the numbered boxes are about in the daily section.

I plan to write a few details or thoughts about each day in the log section. This is more in-depth than the gratitude log.

So, that's about it for now. I may share more as I go along.

If I've piqued your interest, I recommend searching Pinterest for "bullet journal" and/or "bujo" (the shortened version people seem to use on Instagram and such). There is also a website dedicated to the original, very plain and basic concept at www.bulletjournal.com. I found a combination of the two to be most helpful for me.

Do you bullet journal? If so, I'd love a link to yours in the comments!

posted from Bloggeroid

 
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