Wednesday, December 19, 2007

An unexpected visitor...loom knit beer cozies, and a surprise

A few days ago we had an unexpected visitor to our bird feeder right outside our living room window. After a day or two, our "visitor" invited more of his kind on over and we had nearly 10 of them pecking around at the dropped bird seed from above. What a wonderful discovery! I am really enjoying living out in the country having such beautiful wildlife come right to my door....

Our Visitor

I just finished my sister and her husband's Christmas gifts. They were very simple, but it took me awhile because of the color work. Basically, I cast onto my fine gauge loom 45 pegs using the e-wrap cast on method. Second, I Knit one Purled one for 5 rows (a flat panel) in my contrasting color (slipping the end stitches on each turn). On row 6 I changed to my second (or main color) and knit two rows. Then following my graph I created in Excel, I started my color work. I finished up with one row of knit in the contrasting color and four rows of Knit one Purl one. I used the crochet bind off method with a single crochet in between each join. I used the mattress stitch to sew up the sides, and voila, custom beer cozies for the Minnesota Vikings fan. Now they wont get eachother's beer mixed up when they watch the game!

Anyone who is a member of my loom knitting yahoo group Decor Accents, knows I released my loom knit gloves pattern last Friday. Well, the glove pattern I am selling is by far superior to the first glove pattern design I made (my prototype). The first one made it possible for me to design the second version. I had a lot of issues with this pattern I wasn't able to solve. The worst of which was making the fingers larger to fit my hand without making the hand portion too large. When I did figure out a way to make the fingers larger, I got some holes that needed to be fixed. For anyone with slender fingers, or for anyone who doesn't mind mending holes, this pattern is offered here free for personal use. Feel free to share this pattern with a direct link to my blog!

Glove Prototype 1

Crochet cast on 45 stitches clockwise (or left to right on a single sided rake) onto a fg loom with at least 45 pegs.

Finger 1
Row 1: e-wrap and K all stitches across
Row 2: P10 K35
Row 3: e-wrap and K all sitches across
Row 4: P10 K35
Rows 5 & 6: e-wrap and K12 turn and K12 (clockwise). 33 stitches will not be knit on this row.
Row 7: e-wrap and K12 on stitch 13 reach down and grab the ladder from the stitch below with crochet hook, twist and place on 13th peg

(counterclockwise), e-wrap this peg and K bottom two loops over top loop, continue to e-wrap and K across
Row 8: P10 K35 and crochet cast off 12 stitches and single crochet after joining each stitch but do not single crochet after joining the last two

stiches, use the loop from this bindoff to begin row 9 (33 stitches will remain on the loom).
Row 9: Crochet cast on 15 stitches clockwise placing first cast on stitch onto the 33 peg (there will be two loops on this peg)

Finger 2
Row 10: Repeat rows 1 through 5
Row 15 & 16: e-wrap and K14 turn and K14 (clockwise). 31 stitches will not be knit on this row.
Row 17: K14 and on row 15 reach down and grab the ladder from the stitch below with crochet hook, twist and place on 15th peg (counterclockwise),

e-wrap this peg and K bottom two loops over top loop, continue to e-wrap and K across
Row 18: P10 K35
Row 19: Crochet cast off 12 stitches following method described in row 8 with bindoff to begin row 20 (33 stitches will remain on the loom).

Finger 3
Row 20: Crochet cast on 15 stitches using method described in row 9 and repeat rows 1 through 4
Row 24 & 25: e-wrap and K14 turn and K14
Row 26: e-wrap and K14 on stitch 15 reach down and grab the ladder from the stitch below with crochet hook, twist and place on 15th peg

(counterclockwise), e-wrap this peg and K bottom two loops over top loop, continue to e-wrap and K across
Row 27: P10 K35 and crochet cast off 14 following method described in row 8 with bindoff to begin row 28

Finger 4
Row 28: Crochet cast on 13 stitches following method described in row 9.
Row 29: Repeat rows 1 through 4
Row 33 & 34: e-wrap and K20 turn and K20 (clockwise) 25 stitches will not be knit on this row
Row 35: K20 and on row 21 reach down and grab the ladder from the stitch below with crochet hook, twist and place on 15th peg (counterclockwise),

e-wrap this peg and K bottom two loops over top loop, continue to e-wrap and K across
Row 36: P10 K35
Row 37: Crochet cast off 20 stitches following method described in row 8 with bindoff to begin row 38

Row 38: Crochet cast on 13 stitches (first stitch placed on last stitch from previous row - there will be two loops on this peg)
Row 39: Repeat rows 1 through 8 two times (16 rows worked). Do not do a crochet cast off until you have worked the 16th row.

Finger 4 (backside)
Row 40: Crochet cast on 21 stitches following method described in row 9.
Row 41: Repeat rows 29 through 36
Row 49: Crochet cast off 12 following method described in row 8 with bindoff to being row 50

Finger 3 (backside)
Row 50: Crochet cast on 15 stitches following method described in row 9
Row 51: Repeat rows 20 through 27

Finger 2 (backside)
Row 56: Crochet cast on 13 stitches following method described in row 9
Row 57: Repeat rows 10 through 18
Row 61: Crochet cast off 14 stitches following method described in row 8

Finger 1 (backside)
Row 62: Crochet cast on 13 stitches following method described in row 9
Row 63: Repeat rows 1 through 7
Row 69: P10 K35
Row 70: Crochet cast off glove from loom.

Sew up each finger and side of glove using the mattress stitch. I also did a version where I slipped the loops created from the crochet cast off onto the loom with right sides of the glove together, then I took the top part of the glove I needed to join and slipped those loops from the crochet bind off onto the loom and knit off. Then I did an additional crochet bind off and whip stitched the tops of the fingers closed. Turn glove rightside out. Make another glove.

© Copyright 2007 Karen Gielen For personal, non-commercial use only. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Friday, December 14, 2007

My Crowning Achievement!

Now you can create a pair of gloves with fingers in half the time it takes to needle knit a pair! Create a pair of these cozy gloves with fingers using your fine gauge round loom with 40 pegs (the fg adult sock loom from Decor Accents was used for this design). These gloves features a thumb gusset that swings both forward and backward making them interchangeable, therefore you will not have a right or left hand glove! I didn't officially time how long it took me to create a pair of these since I took lots of breaks to care for my family, however, I would guesstimate the time at approximately 3 hours for each glove! That's half the time of conventional knitting on DPNs! Once you get the hang of things, your next pair should go even faster still. Sized to fit a medium/large woman's hand, they make a great last minute Christmas gift for the women in your lives! The skill level is intermediate since you will be using some advance seaming techniques. A link for a great video tutorial on this advance seaming technique is provided for advanced beginners to broaden their looming skills! Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Must be too many irons in the fire!

Man, oh man. I haven't posted since September 5th! Where exactly does the time go? I must be having fun...Don't they say that time flys when you're having fun? Well, we did have something extra special happen last Friday, September 21st...we got a very special addition to our little herd of alpacas. She is just a doll! She doesn't have a name yet. And no, we HADN'T considered Delilah! She was born bright and early in the pouring rain! So much for alpacas being born between 8 a.m. and 12 noon! Ha, ha! Oh, and so much for them being born on a sunny day! Well, it did clear off and turn into a bright and very warm day until about noon when the wind switched and it turned cold again. I am just happy it got warm shortly after she had her and she was able to dry off and get used to her new legs and surroundings while it was warm out instead of the bitter cold we had the few days before her birth.

Isn't she just the sweetest?

My son turns 7 today! We had his birthday festivities this past weekend. He's still crazy about Pirates and being the Aaaaaaaaartistic being that I am, I just had to create a Pirate party he would never forget. The cake was extra fun to make:

The cake surrounded with lots of loot

I sent the kiddos out to find pieces of eight all over the house, yard, and way out to the woods. My favorite clue was found out in our patch of woods, found hanging from a stake:

Hum, hum alpacas

Have ye any food?

Avast matie! Avast matie! Three bags full

One that isn’t opened

And one we don’t use

And one covered with a lid, which hides ye next clue

The kids had a great time with the water balloon fight despite NOT being able to create two giant pirate ships from cardboard boxes like I had intended. I had the kids walk the plank blind folded (a wooden board stradled across two cement blocks). The best part, I drew sharks with sidewalk chalk circling the plank and even had a shark emerging from the water ready to bite it's next victim. I should have gotten a picture before the kiddos threw water all over it during the water balloon fight. It was VERY cool! Makes me want to draw again!

Now, on a more crafty note. I joined in on the cloth-along going on with my looming dishcloth group over on yahoo. The group unanimously decided to include any type of dishcloths and NOT limit them to loomed ones. Here are my crocheted dishcloth dresses:

I decided to design an alpaca winter hat using the Fair Isle or Standed Color knitting method. I intend on looming my hat. It would make a cute bag too!
© 2007 Karen J. Gielen. All rights reserved. This design is my own creation. I was not able to find a pattern anywhere and had to make my own. Please do not copy, take or distribute without my written consent!

Have a great day!

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

RLS - Nightmare on County Rd 155

It's maddening. The more tired I am, the worse it gets. Night after night it is a ficious cycle. I am going crazy with it. How can it affect just one leg? I am trapped in a nightmare but I am not even sleeping! At midnight I got back out of bed to research this horrible disorder. I need to work on cutting caffeine from my diet. I need to try adding more folate. I could have severe kidney failure. Oh boy, this gets worse. Looks like I can expect it to get even worse as I age. Oh, wonderful!

Amanda in her Sunday best at Granny and Grandfather's Anniversary Celebration 8-26-07

We finally brought our alpacas home! It took a few days for them to settle in but now they are right at home. I just love going out there and feeding and stroking their soft coats. Our baby boy, Samson, is so friendly and just the cutest little puff ball of fur. You could just hug and squeeze him. I am well into reading this book on of the ranches gave as a gift to us on handling and herding Alpacas. No wonder I like them so much, their mannerisms resemble cats in so many ways. They even use a communial toilet area and do not go all over the pasture.

Paige in her Sunday best at Granny and Grandfather's Anniversary Celebration 8-26-07

Go to go feed the alpacas...

Friday, July 27, 2007

Up With The Chickens

Children are funny. My son has been attending summer school since July 9th and every day he has to go to school I have to shake him awake to get him up and ready for school (he needs to be out the door by 7:20 a.m.). He doesn't have school on Fridays and can sleep in if his little heart so desires. Wouldn't you know it, he is up with the chickens on Fridays. He was up at 6:00 a.m. this morning wide eyed and bushy tailed! My day to sleep in too, you know! My youngest was really crabby this morning too. During school days she sleeps til 9:00. Today she was up at 6:00 a.m. too and CRABBY! A mother can't win sometimes.

My husband took this photo at Twin Harbors, MN. It was a port we discovered by accident while looking for some other attractions driving along the north shore. We spent a couple hours near this port watching and waiting for the ships to leave dock so my husband could see it head back out to open water. There was this peer that went way out into the lake with a fog horn on the tip. That day it was incredibly foggy and there was this giant sign warning people to stand clear since the decibles of the fog horn could knock a person over. We didn't get to hear the fog horn on the peer but the ships horn was blarring as it head out to open water. There were two ships at port when we were there. One was able to leave port without any trouble, but the second one had to turn back into port and try the process again. It was a longer ship and was closer to the shoreline. It looked as though it was having trouble with the shallow water and rocks near shore.

This little tugboat is what brought us near the habor in Twin Ports. I spotted a sign that said tugboat tours while driving through Twin Ports. Turns out, it was just a tour where you got to look around the little tugboat while it was ported. We thought we might be able to board the tugboat and get a "tour" of the shoreline. Although we didn't board this tugboat, we were glad we came to the peer since we got to see a ship leave shore and got to see it up close. After we left Twin Harbors we headed up the north shore to Split Rock lighthouse. Up in the lighthouse is some of the most beautiful views of the lake and shoreline!

View from Split Rock Lighthouse

Wednesday, July 25, 2007


Ok, I know it's hot. It has to be hot when even the kids think it's hot. They thought the kittens were hot too apparently. They thought they were being nice to the poor little kitty when they put her in the freezer. If I hadn't gone out to the freezer to look for something to make for supper we would have had catcicles! I just wanted to ask my four year old if she did it and she must have thought I was really upset, I chased her all around the yard -- man she's fast! I sat the kids down in the house when everything settled down and explained to them that no matter how nice they thought they were being to the kittens, they would have killed the poor things. Oh, the things little children do.

I haven't posted in a while since I am so darn busy with all of the preperations for my parents 50th. I have completed the program flyer, you can see what it looks like here. Now I am working on the cake design. I was able to create a beautiful sugar rose from sugar paste this afternoon. I am practicing up so the cake is the best it can be. My intentions are to make white roses and dust them with edible gold dust. I took a picture of it and will post when I get my disc filled up. I just have finishing touches to make to the video presentation and that should be good to go. Now I just need to figure out how to project it from my computer onto a projector screen or the wall.

Our Little Getaway

Last month my hubby and I managed to sneak away up north to Duluth, MN for a weekend (with baby in tow) leaving the other five kiddos behind. We had a wonderful time sight-seeing at Split Rock Lighthouse, Gooseberry Falls, and Twin Harbors. I had the pleasure of getting a Suddenly Slender seaweed wrap and was able to shed 6 lbs! No, I haven't gained it back and it is a whole month later. My hubby treated me to it for our anniversary. Duluth is the only location in the entire state of MN that has an authorized wrap facility. That got me thinking...maybe I should open one down here in central MN. Well, I sent for the info from Suddenly Slender and after reviewing the info and doing a little research, I determined it wasn't the right direction for me. I would love for someone else to open up a facility closer to me, however, you would have a guaranteed return customer!

Until next time...

Monday, June 25, 2007

Just call me creADHDivkj!

I've self diagnosed myself with creative ADHD. I have so many creative ideas swimming like made around in my head and I can't seem to stay focused on one idea for very long and then I am off and working on another idea. I should change my nickname from cre8tivkj to creADHDivkj, LOL! Here are some projects I've been working on...

I've had flip flops on my brain lately. First a gal in my looming dishcloths group mentioned she would love to see a flip flop dishcloth pattern so I set out to make one (more on that in a bit). I worked on that for several days making my chart and making my prototype and reworking the pattern, etc., etc...Then my stepdaughter's 10th birthday party quickly decended upon me and I had to quick figure out something "cool" to put on her cake. I got the crazy idea I was going to make a flip flop shaped cake. I hunted my fool head off for days looking for flip flop cake pans to no avail. I decided I was just going to have to make my own pans. Yes, you read it right, I had to MAKE my own pans! I then set out figuring out how I was going to do that. I found in the grocery store a foil roasting pan (the disposable kind you use to roast a turkey in) I decided I could some how form it into the desired shape. WRONG! I bent and twisted and formed and fussed and messed with that crazy thing for more than an hour. It was 10:30 on Monday evening (the night before my stepdaughter's birthday), I was getting desperate. It seems like inspiration always strikes me when my time is running out. I finally decided to cut out of cardboard the shape of the flip flop, cover the shape in tin foil and then cut the sides from the disposable foil pan and form the sides around my flip flop bottoms, clip the corners (as you would clip material when sewing to form corners) and I secured the foil pan together with heavy duty packing tape on the bottom of the pan. I went to bed apprehensive if this would even work. The next morning I sat and thought for a moment, I couldn't possible bake anything in this pan (the tape would not hold up to the heat) so I brain stormed for a bit and thought of making a nobake cheesecake. I got excited when I realized that the crushed graham crackers would look like sand on the beach and I was going to crush extra crackers and scatter them around the cake once I pulled the form from around the cake (I forgot all about this creative thought, however, when the 6, 8, 9, and 10 year old girls and boys started showing up for the party and the noise in my house went up 20 notches, LOL!). Here's the finished cake:

Coolest Flip Flop Birthday Cake Ever!

I completed my daughter's beach themed birthday party by making her a cute beach scene banner she and her friends and brother's and sister's could get their pictures taken with. The kid's really got a kick out of this banner. They laughed and laughed getting their pictures taken as a "Surfer Dude" and a "Hawaiian Hoola Dancer". Kaden and Sam (my boys) took turns being the "Hawaiian Hoola Dancer" and "Surfer Dude":

Sam poses as the "Surfer Dude" while Kaden poses as the "Hawaiian Hoola Dancer"

The proud birthday girl adored her flip flop cake.

Now, back to the flip flop dishcloths I am designing. I have completed my first test pattern and I have two ladies lined up to test two more prototypes and I will be ready to release my design. I have a really neat idea to jazz up the design (I promise, you won't be dissapointed). Stay tuned for pictures and the FREE pattern for you to try out for yourself.

Another creative project I recently completed is the blog banner and blog button I made for my friend Vivian McKnight. I really enjoy reading Vivian's posts on her blog and on the Yahoo groups we both belong to so I handpicked her to help me write a big project I am working on (yet another creative project in the works). As a big THANK YOU gift to her I wanted to design something just for her. She told me what she envisioned for her blog and the following picture formed in my mind:

Vivian's Blog Banner

I am almost finished with my parent's 50th Wedding Anniversary video presentation. It's been a huge, time consuming (but enjoyable) project. I've added so much since my mom and dad got a sneak peek. I was able to work some things in that are very meaninful to them and I do hope everyone enjoys watching what I've so enjoyed putting together. I wish I could share this BIG project here on my blog, but unfortunately, it is 125 MB and would never upload to the web. It is nearly 30 minutes long and contains video clips, music, photos, and voice over narrations.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

3 a.m. wake up call!

BEEP BEEP BEEP! ALERT! FIRE! GET OUT OF THE HOUSE! BEEP BEEP BEEP! ALERT! FIRE! GET OUT OF THE HOUSE... Imagine gettting a wake up call at 3 a.m. that your house is on fire! That is exactly what happened to my family last night. I flew out of bed so fast, I was the first one up. I screamed at my husband "LEE! FIRE!" and ran into the hallway to grab our little girls. But, there wasn't any smoke. My husband jumped out of bed and together we ran through the house trying to find the fire. Our inline smoke detector also detects carbon monoxide and we thought maybe this is what set it off.

We ran downstairs to check on the kids in the basement. They were all up, eyes wide with fright. We checked every room and found no smoke, no fire. I told my husband to go outside and see if he could see any smoke coming from the roof. No smoke. We were puzzled. Our sleepy minds couldn't figure out what had happened.

The alarm started up again...BEEP BEEP BEEP! ALERT! FIRE! GET OUT OF THE HOUSE! BEEP BEEP BEEP! ALERT! FIRE! GET OUT OF THE HOUSE... We suddenly remembered that we had a plug in carbon monoxide detector we could plug in and see if it was going off due to carbon monoxide. But where was it? The last anyone had seen it was in our office. 3 a.m. is not the best time to look for something that someone thought they saw somewhere. We are still recovering from a whole house move and things are still unpacked and we still have boxes stacked in our closet. We couldn't find the carbon monoxide detector.

The alarm had shut off at this point so we could only assume it had malfunctioned. The only other way to set off this alarm is to purposely press the button to test the alarm. No one had pressed the button. We milled around the house for awhile, uncertain what had happened, relunctant to go back to bed.

After we decided it was safe to go back to bed, a bad thunderstorm came through and my husband climbed back out of bed and turned on the t.v. to track the storm. I drifted off to sleep, the thought of determining a fire escape plan for myself, my husband, and our two girls upstairs. We have already figured out an escape plan and a meeting place for the four kids we have in the basement. Our eldest daughter has a removeable ladder on her bunk bed and it is perfect to hook up into the window wells so each of the kids can climb out and run to safety to the swingset. Please, please, do not wait until 3 a.m. to figure out an escape plan! Do not wait until your mind is half asleep like we did. This 3 a.m. wake up call woke us up to the fact we hadn't planned anything.

Below are some websites that are great for helping you determine an escape plan for you and your family:

Home Fire Escape Plan

Exit Drills in the Home

Don't Let This Happen to Your Home

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Saying Fairwell

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
~1 Corinthians 15:55

There has been much loss for us within the past year. We lost a brother (my brother-in-law) last fall; last week my dear aunt (my mother's oldest sister) passed away; I just heard yesterday that one of my sister's friends (a sweet, sweet lady that was a bride's maid in her wedding) passed away this weekend; and now we lost our cat Beauty. We believe she was run over on the road or was taken by an owl. She never came home the night before last, when they are gone that long, they normally do not return.

I spent most of the day on Friday driving down to my parent's house in southwest Minnesota so I could attend my aunt's funeral Saturday morning. I hadn't seen my aunt in many, many years. The course of our lives leads us in directions far far away from those we love sometimes and I hadn't had a chance to see her or to say goodbye. Her funeral was my only chance to say fairwell. Even though I came down with the flu on Thursday night, I still insisted on driving down so I could attend her funeral. I drove down with a fever and aches all over my body. I drove down with two little girls that weren't feeling well either. Amanda had gotten sick the day before I had and still wasn't eating much and was very whiny. My other daughter Paige got sick on Friday evening when we were sitting in my parent's living room. She got sick all over me. My mother had just handed her off to me and the movement must of been just enough to completely upset her stomach.

I said goodbye to my aunt Saturday morning. She looked just as she did the last time I saw her. She resembles my mother and my grandmother a great deal. Her passing makes me realize my own parents death may not be far behind. My husband has said the same about his parents. His father has been dealing with failing health ever since he had a couple strokes last summer. On Sunday we saw him, he doesn't look well. My husband is bracing himself for his death...

O death where is thy sting?

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Contest Winner Announcement!

First of all, I want to send out a GREAT BIG THANK YOU to each of you who sent me your name ideas for our baby boy alpaca born to Martini, the beautiful alpaca we are purchasing from Hollyhock Alpaca Farm in Becker, MN! There were so many wonderful names to choose from! The decision was a tough one! There was one name that struck a cord with us though. We LOVED the concept behind this one name! You see, alpacas are raised for their luxurious fleece, their value resides in their fleece. The more crimp they have, the better. The softer, the better. When you take this into account, there is only one name that says it all, the name Sampson. Sampson from the Bible, got his strength from his hair. A male alpaca Sire is carefully chosen because of the quality of his fleece (hair) and his composition or stature (strength). Sampson fits him perfectly! The lucky gal with the winning name is Trish. Congratulations Trish!

See you next week!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Name our baby alpaca and win gorgeous alpaca yarn!

Isn't he adorable??? He doesn't have a name though. Tough decision time. He needs a great name. I am a firm believer that an animal takes on characteristics of its name (people do too). Since we want this little fella to turn into a great Sire for our herd (we have female alpacas unrelated to him we could breed with him) we want him to have a worthy name. If you can come up with a worthy name for this little guy, you will snag yourself a skein of gorgeous alpaca yarn! This yarn was spun from alpacas at one of the ranches we are purchasing our alpacas from. It is white (you could dye it if you want). This yarn goes for $6 an ounce! The skein is 3.6 oz and is 300 yards. It is sock weight and there is plenty of yarn here for a couple pairs of soft and cozy socks. Retail value of $21.60! Post your name ideas in the comments section to this post. This contest will run for a week (unless I only have a handful of entries, then it will run longer) and once we choose a name, I'll post the winner's name. We need to check with the Alpaca Registry database to make sure the name is unique before we use it, since alpacas are registered animals. This process will take a little time so I'll post the winner as soon as possible (shouldn't take but a week or so). The winner is responsible for contacting me so I can get the mailing address to send this yarn to. I'll post my email addy along with the winner's name. Good luck!

Win this gorgeous alpaca yarn!

I have been face painting again. I used to face paint a lot and could dig up some great pictures I took of my previous work. I haven't painted a face in a long time. I painted a cat face on my stepdaughter for her play the other night because she begged a pleaded with me so I caved. My youngest daughter watched me paint with total admiration and has wanted me to paint her face two days in a row now! I didn't get a picture of my stepdaughter's face, nor did I get a picture of my daughter's butterfly face yesterday (both were awesome), but I did get a picture of her rabbit face today.

Paige Rabbit Face

I started my Threads of Compassion scarf the other day. I've ripped it out a couples times because I couldn't get the size right so I am not very far. I just started my loom knit version about an hour ago.

Notice the heart?

Needle knit version of my Threads of Compassion Scarf

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Precious memories...VT squares...and a baby alpaca

I have been working on my mom and dad's 50th wedding anniversary presentation over the course of the past couple weeks. I am teaching myself how to use a video editing and movie making software that came with my laptop. While I was watching several hours of home videos the other day, I stumbled on some gems. Turns out, my husband is quite adept at handling a video camera. He does a superior job at narrating and working the camera at the same time to create a wonderful piece of film. It's really amazing what he captured while we weren't looking. I watched videos of when my eldest boy was only two and a half years old (he is six now). I watched videos of my eldest daughter's 1st birthday (she is four now). I watched a video my husband made of the kids and I the day I went into the hospital to have our youngest. These precious moments are cherished moments. I am thankful my husband insisted on buying a video camera. These moments would only have been faint memories otherwise. Memories that would have faided away, eventually.

Needle knit VT square using my graph.

My VT squares have been mailed (7 total) and hopefully they will be woven into an afghan that brings healing to a family grieving the loss of a loved one. The square pictured above was needle knit using my graph. I really indended to provide written instructions for others so they could needle knit or loom knit some too, but life just got too busy for me and I barely had time to make squares myself. I did the best I could, and I am certain each and every square will find a special place in one of the afghans for the victims of this terrible tragedy.

My mother's gift.

My mother got a couple dishcloths I knit up for her for mother's day. I finally got them off of my camera to share here.

I got word yesterday that our alpaca that is being adjisted at a ranch near the twin cities had her cria. We welcomed a baby boy into the world. We had hoped for a baby girl to help grow our herd faster but in His wisdom, God blessed us with a boy instead. I will not fret since God knows what He is doing. I thought about it, and since this boy is not related to the two other female alpacas we purchased from another ranch, he could be their sire when he is old enough. Our baby boy alpaca is dark brown and is doing well. His mother had a difficult delivery, but the vet said she should heal up ok and shouldn't have any problems in the future. When I get pictures of the little guy, I'll post them here.

Have a great day!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Drop spindles, fleece shows, planting gardens, VT squares, and more...

Wow, I have been busy, busy, busy! I haven't posted in awhile due to this very fact! I have gotten five going on six VT squares completed. I am now working on making a square on my fine guage loom and I am using my graph with the VT logo. It is tougher than I thought, but I am plugging away at it. Hopefully, once I get that down, the next one will be easier for me.

My hubby and I went down to the twin cities this past weekend first to visit my husband's mother in the hospital and then we went on from there to a small town east of the twin cities called Lake Elmo, MN to a Llama, sheep and Alpaca Fleece festival. I was in my element there! I bought a drop spindle I am anxious to learn to use. I have a lot of fleece out in our garage crying out to me to be spun up into yarn. I'll have to tackle that today.

We have been busy, busy, busy getting our new garden ready for planting. My hubby was out late last night raking all of the dead grass roots out. We need to get this garden ready since it's starting to get kind of late now. My hubby keeps saying we should have decided last fall where we wanted our garden and dug it up then. Would of, could of, should of.

I've added new products to the Looming Angels T-shirt shop. Looming Angels are making a difference, one person at a time. By choosing to be a part of this group, our Looming Angels have taken a stand to help the needy when they can. This t-shirt shop is dedicated to the LOOMING ANGELS who have chosen to make a difference in someone elses life due to a time of crisis, or they just need a helping hand because they've lost so much. At this shop Looming Angels will find products that not only advertise this new and growing group to others and hopefully grow our numbers even further and reach more people in need, but they will find products that will show the world they are making a stitch at a time!

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Doesn't everyone have a crazy aunt Purl?

I have a blog of note I've added because it is the most hilarious knitting blog I've come accross thus far! It will keep you in stitches (hee, hee)! Stop by and visit my Crazy Aunt Purl and read not only the funniest knitting posts, but some of the best comments too! And, you'll learn something in the process!

Have a great day!

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Looming Angels T-Shirt Shop

I am so excited to announce the new Looming Angels T-shirt Shop I opened yesterday! If you belong to the Looming Angels group over on, and you are proud to loom for a cause, stop by the t-shirt shop and grab yourself a "I am a Looming Angel because I loomed for a cause!" t-shirt! The prices are reasonable and there are many sizes and style available to suit most tastes! Looming Angels is a non-profit group and all prices are for cost only. Start shopping by visiting the Looming Angels T-Shirt Shop today!

I created a graph for the Virginia Tech afghan square charity (permission has been given to use the logo for charity). It is a charity devoted to creating afghans for the victim's familes of the Virginia Tech shooting. It needs tweaking and I haven't figured out my guage yet or anything, but the hardest part is done (the graph). If you are interested in making up an 8"x8" square in maroon or burnt orange yarn and sending it on over to the Mosiac Yarn Shop in Blacksburg, Virginia, click here for further details.

Have a great day!

Friday, April 27, 2007

Do you know the popcorn man?

I've been hearing this song for days now...Oh, do you know the popcorn man, the popcorn man, the popcorn man? Oh, do you know the popcorn man who travels with the circus? My son had his circus today at school. I was a tad bit anxious a couple days ago since I had to find a needle in the haystack and come up with a ringmaster costume in April! I couldn't believe my luck when I ended up in the third thrift store in town and found this red suit jacket (don't tell him, it's a women's petite size 4) with black velvet aroud the collar, the wrists, and at the chest. It was a tiny bit large for him, but he was tickled! I made him a top hat out of fun foam, I dressed him in a pair of dress black pants and a dress white shirt, and I fashioned a pretty cool (if I do say so myself) megaphone out of cardstock (colored red with marker), ta da -- he was a handsome ringmaster indeed! He got a lot of compliments since he stood out from the rest of the ringmaster's that were in the other classrooms because he was wearing red. The other ringmasters had on all black. I am glad I persisited in finding him a red jacket. It made his week. Oh, do you know the popcorn man, the popcorn man, the popcorn man...

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Thoughts for today...

Scratch below to find my thoughts for today:

Create your own message at

Both Amanda and Paige were up all night whining. If it wasn't one it was the other...Lately, I feel as though my house has been taken over by toys and school papers...Every morning lately, I've had to change Amanda's bedding since she has had some pretty bad, messy diapers (she's getting molars in)...I am discovering someting torn, broken, or missing every day...I must have a house full of children, huh???? Have a good day!

Monday, April 23, 2007

Only four left

We lost another kitten. Our cat Beauty was really packed into the cathouse she had her kittens in and she must have layed on top of one of the orange kittens and sufficated the poor thing. Oh, I am so bummed out we lost one of the orange kittens! I wanted orange cats so bad and was so happy to have gotten two and now we are down to just one. I hope we don't lose anymore.

The shearing of the alpacas was quite the adventure. We really have a lot to learn. We also realized that our barn is not nearly set up right to do a shearing of this magnetude. Since we are planning on having a large herd eventually, we need to do some more planning and will need to pour some cement in our existing barn so we have an area to shear in. I am glad we participated in this process since now we have a better idea of what we need to do.

I am getting the dishcloth loom now. I was stuggling there. I think I have everything backwards though since I have only made dishcloths on needles thus far. My design is recessed rather than raised. My outside rows are recess also. I am thinking I will get some curling. I'll finish this cloth though since it is a learning process. I resorted to doing my knit and purl like Isela demonstrates rather than the ewrap and/or flat knit stitch. It was the only way to prevent my stitches from getting too tight.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Can't sleep

Insomnia has hit me again. It's after one a.m. and I feel totally awake. I have a big day tomorrow with the first alpaca shearing and all too, but sleep will not come. So, after laying in bed for the past two hours to no avail, I'm back at my computer again...

I forgot to relay the good news. We got five baby kittens yesterday. The kids were so excited. I thought Paige was going to explode! The poor momma cat had to have been stressed out by those noisy kids though, I had to chase them out of the garage, they were just screaming and jumping around with so much excitement and she was in labor, howling in pain, I felt horrible for her. They just didn't understand why it hurt her so much. They ran outside and kept peeking into the garage and were still jumping around and yelling to eachother in excitement. Every once in a while I would catch one of them sneaking into the garage and I had to chase them back out again. Momma cat did lose one. I don't know if it was from all of the chaos or if she would have lost it anyway. We still got four black ones and two orange ones though! I am so happy we got orange ones!!!! I've wanted orange cats for years and kept getting grey ones. It's about time we get some orange cats.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

New dishcloth loom, exercise progress, and shearing.

Eight miles down, only 142 to go! It's starting to feel good. I have been wanting to run away from this extra baby weight, run to get some time to myself, run to banish so I can experience the exercise highs I used to before I had children.

I got my dishcloth loom earlier this week. At first I was frustrated. It's a fine guage loom and I had troubles with it getting too tight. I popped into my looming dishcloth group and wonder upon wonder there was someone who asked that very day about why she was having touble with her fine guage dishcloth loom getting too tight. Someone suggested that she use a pen with all of the guts taken out to help her keep her wraps loose and I tried it, low and behold, it did the trick!

We have shearing on two of our alpacas on Saturday! It's suppose to be a hot and stuffy day. I bet the alpacas will be happy to shed their winter coats! I'll keep you posted on how it goes.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Bev's Journeyings: A bit of this and that sage advice

Bev's Journeyings: A bit of this and that sage advice
I can't tell you how wonderful and profound I found the words in the above post. I met Bev in my Loom Knitting Newbies group over on I participated in the Chemo Slumber Cap Relay loom knitting slumber night caps for chemo patients. I headed on over to her blog to see a picture of all of the caps and read a little further in her blog and found what one lady in her Bible verse study group had learned about the verse Malachi 3:3 "He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver." It made me think about all I had endured in my life thus far, how much I have seen others suffer in their lives as well, and I started to cry. It really makes a person's heart swell when we realize that no matter how bumpy and lumpy and difficult our journey is, our Saviour is there along with us and He never takes His eyes off of us! We need to endure suffering in order to become like Him! We can be rest assured in the fact that He is right there with us and He will not allow us to parish. Make sure you check out that post!

I forgot to post the winner for the Looming Angels Blog button yesterday. Drum roll please.....and the winner is....

To take this button, right click and "save picture as" to save to your hardrive. Then you can upload to your server and link to the Looming Angels group using HTML. Here is the address:

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Yes, Sir! Yes, Sir! Three bags full!

Me with Gabriela Lucia

I went to visit with my alpacas yesterday after my sister and I had our spinning class! Oh, so much fun in one day! And, on top of all of my excitement, I got some bags of alpaca fleece that was going to be thrown out by the owners of the farm where my alpacas are!!!! Yes, you heard it right! I got free alpaca fleece to play with! Not top of the line alpaca fleece, but dirty, coarser fleece. I can certainly do something with it though. My first attempt at washing a small section of it was a disaster though. I felted it before I wanted to felt it! Maybe I should just skip the washing part and card the fleece and prepare it to felt first. Either that, or I should do some more reading and asking questions before I try it again...well, I am not the researching type, so I'll just do it again until I get it right. At least I have lots to work with.

Kaden and Gabriela sure hit it off. I had to laugh and laugh, my husband said that Gabriela must have mistaken Kaden for a cute boy alpaca because he has those big brown eyes and long eyelashes...just like an alpaca!

Kaden Loves Gabriela, or does Gabriela Love Kaden????

We took the alpacas for a walk down the driveway. Paige decided she had to try and Gabriela got away from her. Paige and Gabriela made up though...

Paula is due this summer. We are hoping for a baby girl! Keep your fingers crossed for us since a girl gives you more breeding stock and helps grow the herd! Isn't her fleece the most gorgeous color??

Me and Paula

Well, I need to go announce another winner on the Looming Angels Yahoo Group Grand Opening...I'll announce the winning blog button tomorrow...see you then!

Friday, April 13, 2007

I hope it gets better!

Ouch! My knee hurts. I guess I'm already to the limping part! Hee, hee. I hope it gets better! Four miles down though!

I am about as stressed as stressed can be lately. I had three tricky customer service issues to try and resolve and it wasn't even my fault! The person who took my orders at my supplier was let go just after I placed those three orders, and me and my customers were victims of her mess ups! Ouch! That hurts too! Not a good start! I hope it gets better.

I have a dishcloth loom coming and I am so excited!! I don't know why I have become so interested in dishcloths, it is just nuts. I love needle knitting them and now I can try looming them. I just need to find the time! I bought a couple dishcloth leaflets with some darling patterns I am just dying to make.

I will finally get to spin tomorrow! Here I thought all plans were off when last night my husbands brother called up and said his mother had been rushed to the emergancy room. He right away said he wanted to go see her on Saturday. My heart sank. Then he remembered I had my spinning that I was so looking forward to so he said we can go on Sunday instead...except, now I will probably miss the Looming Angels Grand opening. Changes, changes. Things are always changing around here!

See you next week!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Walking...running...limping my way there!

I started my exercise program yesterday. Now that the baby is finally going to bed at a decent time at night I finally have some time for myself to get myself back after having her! I know she is the last one so now I can be assured when I reach my goal, I shouldn't have any forced setbacks! I felt so FABULOUS when I was in super shape before I got pregnant with my son. I remember the feeling. I liked it. I want to feel that great again about myself and to just feel good. I slept better, ate better, looked GREAT and didn't have any of the aches and pains I have now (even my arthritis wasn't as bad). I know I am seven years older, but I am still young! I want to feel young again. So, rather it be walking, running, or limping my way, I plan on making it there!

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Amanda May, my new customer service rep

I got this bright idea to take pictures of my 16 month old with a play telephone and add her to my baby website. My goal is to give my website a warm and fuzzy feel. A newly pregnant woman or newly expectant father will usually go all googly over babies. I know, I've been pregnant three times and my husband has had a total of six children. Stay tuned for the big publish with all of my changes.

Drum roll please.....and the winner of the blog/webring button for the LoomingAngels group is....Sorry, you'll have to wait until next weekend during the Grand Opening of the group to hear the winning button!

My dragonfly dishcloth is almost done. Boy, it sure takes me a long time to get through projects these days. Just too much going on, I don't have time for leisure activities anymore :-(

Have a blessed Easter! See you next week!

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Hurry up and wait!

It seems I've had nothing but one dissapointment after another this past week. First of all, the weather had been so incredibly beautiful, the birds had been singing, the grass was turning green, the trees were beginning to bud, and then, it snowed. I am grateful we didn't get as much as was predicted, but, none the less, we still got snow... last weekend my sister and I were suppose to have a spinning class and that ended up not happening either! The gal who was going to teach us had baby lambs coming in and she couldn't be there...the grand opening for our Looming Angels group has been changed to not this weekend, but the following. The owner of the group realized Easter was this coming weekend and needed to change the date to Sunday, April 15th instead...and, because of the snow, the dates for the alpaca shearing have changed. Now they are not going to be sheared this coming weekend, but rather, not until the very end of April and the two following weekends in May!

Waiting is not necessarily a bad thing. Good things come to those who wait. Our Easter story promises us our Saviour is coming back to us very soon. This is indeed a very good thing! Our Saviour taught us to ask for God's Kingdom to come in Matthew 6: 9-13. We need to pray each day fervently:

9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
10 Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

Waiting for the return of our Lord has been a long, long wait, it seems. If we look beyond our current headlines, though, we can see that God's prophecies are quickly being fullfilled and we can be assured in the fact that our Lord's day is not very far off! Yes, we need to hurry up and wait! Our Lord is coming soon...and what a joyous day this will be!

Monday, April 2, 2007

What is going on?

Why is everything going heywire???? I wrote a post this morning and it isn't showing up, now when I go to make another post, it is written in another language??? This is a cruel, cruel joke, especially when one hasn't gotten any sleep!

Tick tock, tick tock...1 am...2 am...3 am...4

Insomnia is horrible for anyone. I always thought it was the most horrible thing when I had to go to work the next day stumbling about in a zombie like state, watching the clock at work just as I had all night long, tick tock, tick tock... That was until I had children and I decided to become a stay-at-home mom. Mom is always on duty, you know. I watched the clock for hours on end last night. I decided to get back out of bed when I just couldn't get to sleep by 1 am. I tried to read for awhile but started getting restless legs (which is misery on top of misery when you are exhausted) so I crawled back in bed and miracle upon miracles I fell asleep...then came a little wimper (at 2:30 am) that got louder and louder. So up I got to check the baby. Talk about cruel. I layed back down only to begin watching the clock once more...3 am...4 am...5 am...I was sound asleep when bright and early at 7 am the baby started to cry, ready to be up for the day! Oh insomnia as a mother is the most horrible thing! I am making friends with my coffee pot today.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Crackin' the whip

Wow, that Dusty sure runs a tight ship! Hee, hee. She's had me busy making graphics for the new LoomingAngels group (where we loom knit for a cause). I don't mind. A reprieve of sorts, I suppose. I had my nose burried in my laptop, head bent, neck cranked working on my "monster" website, I needed a couple days break. We make a great team, we bounce ideas off of eachother to make some really great graphics! Now I am working on a blog button to link to the Looming Angels group thanks to RavenStardream, and I got the idea to create a webring to create more interest and to recruit more members. When the buttons done, it's yours for the taking (please use your own badwidth), as long as you join to loom for a worthy cause :-)!

Yipeeeeeeeeeeee! I get to spin yarn tomorrow!!!! Who hooooooo! Have a great weekend, I know I will.

Paige feeding Amanda.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007


No, I am not talking about the yarn on my needles or my loom. I have a tremendous amount of tension in my neck...I was up all night not loom knitting, but thinking about my ecommerce web site and how much work I have to do to it. I have had children home from school and lots of work to do with my husband for his business so I've had no time to work on the web site. I am getting anxious to get it done since I have a lot of marketing dollars going into advertising this thing so we can finally get it to make money. I have put so much time and energy into this web site I need it to start really pulling in the cash. Based on what everyone is telling me, it is a lovely site and very well done, I just need to get it marketed.

Guess what??? My Looming Angel is going to be used in a new group for looming for a cause over on yahoo. I am truly honored to share my talents for such a worthy cause. I was also honored that I was asked to share my design!

Have a great day!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Knee deep in wool

I am so excited! This weekend I will be working with a gal practicing spinning alpaca fleece and the following weekend we will be shearing our alpacas! For the next two weekends I'll be knee deep in alpaca fleece! I'll be as happy as a pig in mud :-)

I am just about finished with my dragonfly dishcloth I designed. I only get minutes a day to work on it so it is taking me a long time! It's a busy household with six kids running around. Amanda is a little cruiser now so she is into everything.

It was close to 80 degrees today and we spent a lot of time outside (tomorrow and over the next week it is going to be only in the 40s so we enjoyed the weather while it was here). Amanda just loves being outside. She got out of her stroller and just walked around and around the garage! She was so excited to be on the ground. I let her walk barefoot (even through the mud) and she just loved it! She washed up in the tub so it wasn't a big deal.

Meat my pet alpaca sock:

I call this my pet alpaca sock because I made just one, felted it (it of course shrunk) and when I went to make the matching sock, I couldn't find my row counts sheet. Now I have a sock I have no way of replicating. It feels so nice I have on more than one occasion (ok, more than several occasions) found myself petting it. I have watched my husband pet it. My kids pet it. My dad pet it. The alpaca rancher we got our animals from was petting it. Based on what everyone wants to do to it, I've affectionately named it "my pet alpaca sock".

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Joining yarnaholics anonymous

I know I am not alone, a gal really gets into knitting, crochet, looming, etc. and suddenly she can't get enough yarn. You find yourself going into the store to get yarn for a specific project and suddenly here you are tossing this yarn and that yarn into your cart as well. You walk up to the checkout with this feeling of guilty pleasure and then you get home and can't remember how you got all that yarn! I should be ashamed of myself, I opened my hall closet today and yarn balls came tumbling out! I swear a little yarn fairy came around during the night and filled up my closet! I was also digging in our storage shed today and found yarn from a long ago project and found myself snatching it up, coming into the house and stuffing it into what I now call my "yarn closet". Tell me I am not alone.

This coming Saturday my sister and I will be taking a two hour course on spinning alpaca fleece. Oh boy! More yarn! Alpaca yarn is even more of a guilty pleasure. It is so soft and so beautiful I don't WANT to use it. Does anyone else find themselves petting there alpaca yarn? I did start an alpaca sock on one of my new sock looms I just received in the mail yesterday. This sock WAS for my husband but feels so luxurious, I just might keep it for myself :-)

Well, I need to put my nose back to the grind stone and work on the web site again.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

I'd rather be looming instead

Ouch! My neck is sore! I have been busy hunched over my laptop for days trying to get my ecommerce website's product line switched out ( I have so many more products to upload and lost of body copy to write. I'm burned out for the night, I had to take a breather and focus on something else. I sure wish I were looming instead! I also have this darling dishcloth I designed that I am needle knitting that I am anxious to post. I need to learn how to convert it to the loom too. Funny, I learned to loom knit to convert patterns from needles to the loom and now I have started really loving my needles and my looms are getting a little neglected. I have some fine gauge sock looms coming my way in a few days from Decor Accents, Inc. so I am sure I'll be looming up some socks here pretty soon. I have a lot of alpaca yarn that would make some lovely socks! Well, I am pretty wiped out, I best hit the hay for the night. Have a great week!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Gurneys catalog, dishcloths, and fences...

Aaaah! It must be Spring... when thoughts turn to fresh fruit, fragrant flowers, fresh vegetables, cotton cloths, and fences...

Our Gurneys catalog is becoming tattered and torn since my husband and I have been busy leafing back and forth through the pages trying to decide what we want to buy, anxious to get our hands deep in the dirt with thoughts of fresh, sweet fruit and fresh vegetables making our mouths water. My husband keeps pointing out these beautiful, full-grown trees pictured in the catalog too. He has visions of trees lining our driveway (mind you, the trees would only be a couple inches tall when we get them in the mail!)

I have been working on designing cotton dishcloths and needle knitting them. Once I get my pattern needle knit, I can then turn my attention to converting it to my loom. I am anxiously awaiting my loom order I placed with Decor Accents (fine gauge) which will work wonderfully to replicate my needle knit design. My design features a dragonfly and is turning out very well. Once I figured out how to do it, I started designing lots of dishcloths in my head.

And finally, our thoughts turn to fences since our alpacas can come home once we can get those fences done! Yeah! My brother-in-law is helping us tear down the old so the new can go up. He got all of the barbed wire off today and the old fence post taken down. Now we need to clear out the weeds and we are ready for our new fence posts and fencing.

My husband asked me to take his picture of him and the girls with his new "do", enjoy:

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Our hills will soon be alive with the sound of music...the humming of alpacas!

My husband and I are embracing the lifestyle of alpaca ranching! We purchased our first animals a week ago and we are ready to purchase one more sometime this week. We will have a total of two pregnant females and one maiden female (she too will be ready to be bred this fall). By next year we should have a total of eight alpacas. We are getting anxious to bring our animals home. My husband and I have both fallen in love with these gorgeous animals and can't get enough of them! We are both finding ourselves waking up during the night with these little creatures dancing around in our heads! Take a look at these faces! You can't help but fall in love:

I am anxious also to get my hands on this luxurious fleece and to begin making some very special things. I am trying my hand at spinning the fleece to make my own yarns so I can loom knit and/or needle knit this spun gold into products we can sell and to wear for our own enjoyment.

Once the frost goes out we can get out to our pasture and get our fencing in. We will be working very closely with the ranchers we are purchasing alpacas from in order to set our ranch up properly and to learn how to raise these animals to be happy, healthy, and gorgeous fleece producing animals. The hills on our acerage will soon be alive with the sound of music (humming alpacas)...thus the new name for our ranch--Humming Hills Alpacas of Avon, MN.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Great News...Is this God or what?!?!?!?!?!

I received this email last night from my good friend who has had cancer before and the doctors were once again worried it was back:

"Here is the report I just received yesterday. God is definitely alive and well and working in my life.

Well, would you like to hear something really amazing? I called the doctor's office today to get the results of my blood work. If you remember, the CA125 which is supposed to be 35 or less was 6464 one month ago. Well my prayer since I decided to go and have another test was that if it is not cancer, the Lord would make a significant difference in a way that would show people He is at work. For some reason it kept going through my head that maybe it would drop to around 5,000. That way it wouldn't be normal, but it wouldn't be climbing; and this would show in my mind that something is wrong in my body BUT NOT cancer.

Well, when I called in today, her first remark was that the number had gone DOWN. She was telling me all the other blood test results like creatnine, oxygen in the blood, etc., but it took her a minute to find the CA125 number. FINALLY she told me it was 5169. WOW! That is lacking 5 points of being 1300 lower than the last reading. Is that God or what?!?!?!?!?! How can I help but love Him!!!!!!!

My first reaction was to wait a month and do the blood test again. The secretary said she would have to check with the doctor, so I am thinking the doctor is going to want a cat scan, etc. Today I called back as I had not heard, and even the doctor is saying wait a month and check the test again. I think it is truly amazing and just like God!!!"

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

A looming angel watching over those suffering in the world below...

I put my graphic design skills to work and contributed an original design to the LoomKnittingNewbies group over on for the chemo slumber cap relay. I am very proud to contribute my skills for something very close to my heart. This has been such a rewarding experience for me, creating caps for little girls suffering from such a devistating illness (all of my caps are made on the red Knifty Knitter and are made from pale pink and purple yarn). I look at each of my girls, so healthy and full of life, and my heart strings ache for those little girls who will be donning my slumber caps I stitched with love. I wish I could take each of those little girls up onto my lap and hold them tight wiping all of their fears away (if only for a moment). Yes, may my looming angel watch over those suffering in the world below!

Here is a picture of my first four chemo night caps:

Monday, March 5, 2007

Five hats down...working on the sixth...maybe one more

I haven't posted in a while since I had such an incredibly busy week with appointments; alpaca ranches to visit; a birthday party to plan and have; and two feet of snow to move, shovel, and just sit and watch. I got alpaca yarn to knit with and I made three socks :-). I felted one sock and now I am working on the matching socks (hee hee). I started teaching myself how to felt raw fleece since I had a request for a fleece vest; I started taking a writing test to get into writing school; and last, but not least, I am working on a spreadsheet to figure out our corporate taxes due on March 15th. Whew! I am tired. I bet you are too after reading all of that! And on top of everything, I still have six children to chase around the house.

I am now on my sixth chemo night cap. I will have enough yarn left over to do a special 7th hat using two colored yarns wound together that will look lovely together. I can burn the pictures onto my cd digital camera of all of my chemo caps now that I have it filled with birthday pictures so will post them tomorrow. Tah, Tah.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Two hats down...? to go

I just finished my second hat (I started late yesterday) and have lots of yarn left over (I am making child hats) so will continue until my yarn runs out. I have a very sweet story to tell about my hats...My three (soon-to-be) four year old daughter Paige liked my hats so much she had to ask who they were for. I told her they were for a little girl with no hair. She right away thought they were for her sister Amanda May (who is one and doesn't have much hair). I told her that they were not for Amanda May but for a little girl we don't know that is probably about her age and doesn't have any hair because she is very sick. She right away named her "Cindy". I said to her, "Oh, her name is Cindy, huh?" and she said, "Yes." So when I started to make "Cindy" another hat she started with the questions again. She wanted to know why I am making "Cindy" another hat, and I told her it was because when "Cindy's" hat gets dirty, she will need another one. That made it all ok with her when I told her that. Then a little while later she wanted to know how dirty "Cindy" was going to get. I asked her why she wants to know that, and she said because she wants a hat just like "Cindy's" and she hoped "Cindy" wasn't going to get too dirty so I could make her one too! LOL. I just had to laugh!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Get ready...get set...GO!

I have decided to join the Chemo Hat relay that is going on right now in the Loom Knitting Newbies group over on Cancer has truly touched my life through many of my friends and family so this is something very close to my heart. A very dear friend of mine is suffering right now, as is my father (he has prostate cancer and had been in remission from lymphoma for the past 4 years). Both of my grandmothers suffered with and died from cancer. I saw my dad's mother suffer from ovarian cancer, have surgery and recover for a time and then the cancer struck her again in the form of an inoperable brain tumor. She lost all of her hair from the chemotherapy and wore a wig at my wedding! I was very young when my mother's mother suffered with cancer that eventually took her life. I remember very clearly my mother sitting at the kitchen table breaking down in tears from watching her mother suffer. I remember my older sister becoming very frightened and worried when she was asked to go stay with grandma for a week in the summer (she was terrified that grandma would die while she stayed with her and she wouldn't know what to do)...Yes, cancer has definately touched my life. I do not know how many hats I will be able to do but I will do what I can.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

A birthday party invitation fit for a princess...

I have been very busy all weekend first designing and then making my three (soon to be four) year old's birthday invitations. She is a little princess so there is only one option fit for a princess...a castle card! I have been carefully planning her birthday cake also and the details of her birthday party. She is so cute, she is telling everyone that it is her "birthday week"! Sounds like just like a princess, stretching her day out to a whole week!

I frogged my one loom mitten simply because it was so huge I could wear it as an oven mitt! I will need to make this pattern on my mitten loom rather than the blue Knifty Knitter.

This mitten pattern is very clever incorporating the thumb into the hand piece rather than knitting the thumb seperately. I got a little confused the first time I tried to knit it so I started to keep track by marking on a piece of paper Row A and put a green twisty tie on the pegs corresponding to that row and then I put Row B and put white twisty ties corresponding with those rows. This really helped me keep track!

Well, someone from my Knifty Knitting Loom group over on beat me to the punch on the loom knit glove! She has more experience with the loom than I and I just took on too complicated of a project for my level of knowledge (I tend to want to run before I walk). Congratulations Christine! I really want to know how you did it!

The cardinals have left our bird feeder outside our picture window :-( Here is the last picture I took of those beautiful creatures: