Monday, September 8, 2008


I finally completed Melanie from Patricia Kristoffersen's Victorian Spiral Doilies. I had started it along with my fellow Raveler's for a group Doilympic CAL. I came in dead last which is probably the equivalent of an Aluminum Foil medal LOL! That's ok though, I am pleased with the results. I used size 10 thread in Natural and Sage Rose.

I have already started my next doily, Cappuccino from PK's Coffee n' Cream. I am sure it will probably be another month before I post again, I seem to be very slow lately. This may be the last doily I work on for awhile, because the holidays are going to be here before I know it, and I need to start working on my list of knitted and crocheted goodies for presents.

Monday, August 11, 2008


I just returned from Tucson, AZ and a wonderful visit with my Mom, Grandma, Aunt, Uncle and cousin. It is always so good to see them all! Mom's house is like visiting a private spa, she has a pool and each day we would go out and float around relaxing, talking and laughing. I got a perm while I was there, a pedicure and I finished (and started) some new projects. We went out for ice cream and got these huge sundaes! One is my Mom's, I promise I didn't eat them both!

I finally finished the Purple Prairie Star for my Grandma, and she loved it!

I also took a picture of Mom with her Prairie Star I made her last Christmas.

I started Melanie, a PK doily that we are doing in my Ravelry PK Doily group during the Olympics. I am using my own colorway, Sage Rose and another solid color that I have not determined yet. I did a few rounds with a cream color thread that upon closer inspection was too creamy, so I frogged back, and I am trying to find a better solid colored thread that I will be happy with.

It was a great vacation that went too fast! (Don't they always?) Now I am back into my daily routine of work. Have a bunch to catch up on I am sure. Next mini-vacation is at the end of this month for my daughter's 21st birthday! I can't believe she is already 21 and a Mom herself! Which makes me a Grandma...which I still have a hard time calling myself. Which is why I have dubbed myself G.B. for Grandma Brenda, without actually being called Grandma!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


I completed another PK doily this morning...Bewitching! I don't know what I am going to do with my pile of doilies and dishcloths I am accumulating, but it sure is good therapy! LOL

I did complete the Between Meals doily as well before I started this one, but I haven't been able to get a picture of it yet. The batteries in my regular camera died, and I need to buy some more rechargeable batteries for it. It goes through regular batteries like crazy! I used the camera on my phone to take this one, and it is not the best quality, but I can't get a good picture of the whole Between Meals doily on it. I have the batteries on my Wal-Mart list for when I go this weekend, because it is just a given that I will end up there at some point this weekend.

I have a long weekend, today is my Friday. I took a vacation day for tomorrow, and of course, Friday is the 4th of July. Looking forward to the time off. Of course, it always goes to fast, and as soon as I leave work today the "I only have 4 days until I have to be back!" sets in. So many things I want to do, and 4 days just won't cut it! I hate that about myself...always counting down the time.

Hope everyone has a safe & happy 4th of July!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Between Meals Doily Pic

Just posting a pic real quick of this is 21" across right now, and I still have 11 rounds to complete. Completed size is going to be approx 30", maybe even bigger after it is blocked.

I am off to clean my car inside and out before the sun comes around the front of my house and makes that task unbearable (more so than it already is). Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Monday, June 2, 2008

Monster Doily & Long Lost (WIP) Star

I will have to post pictures later, once I figure out how to get the whole dang thing in the picture, but my Between Meals doily is going to be HUGE!

I picked it up over the weekend after a little hiatus from crocheting to learn to knit, and forgot how big it already was, and I was only 50% through with it! I have about 17 more rounds to go, and I would say it is already at least 20-22" in diameter already. Huge. My daughter looked at it and asked if I was making a bedspread. Huge.

I think it will turn out very nice, and I am glad I tackled this doily. I have drooled over other Between Meals doilies, so had it on my alphabetized Ravelry queue list. Blazed through the "A" doilies (mostly Patricia Kristoffersen) early on, and between knitting and the size of this one, it is taking a while.

I ran out of the solid color I was using, and Hobby Lobby was closed Saturday before I realized I was going to run out and I didn't have another ball of Frosty Green in my stash. (HOW in the world did that happen? Luckily, I made it through the round (barely) before I was at the point where I switched to the variegated colorway I was using on the next couple of rounds. So, I have to remember to go pick that up after work so when I need to pick the solid up again, I have it.

I also was put on alert that my grandmother would really like a Prairie Star afghan to show off to her friends while she is at her summer getaway up in Showlow, AZ. She tried to snag my Mom's to take up there saying that it might get cold (she did have snow last week!), but Mom wouldn't go for it. So, Mom asks if I can "whip one up for GG?" Whip one up???? There is no whipping that puppy up. My solution is to finally finish the one I started for myself, I only have half diamond motifs left to put on it and then the border, so I could feasibly have it done in a week or two. I can make another one for myself another time. No, I can't "whip it up", but during the colder months, it is a good crochet project that is warm to work on and easy to memorize...a good T.V. project, and easy enough to pick up at a (much) later date and not be lost as to where you were in the pattern.

I have missed crocheting. I like knitting, but I have to say the crocheting is my first love.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Long Weekend

I just love 3-day weekends! Of course, there is never enough time to do everything I want to do, but I usually pick one big project that I have been saying I will do, and put my mind to it. I have started a list of projects to do when I have a few days off, and this time I chose a fun one one, instead of something icky like steamcleaning the carpets. I spent the weekend dyeing!

I recruited help by telling them that if they prepped some thread, they could dye some thread, free reign, anything goes. That seemed to work (this time)! Both my son and daughter dyed a colorway, and true to my word, I didn't stand over them. I laid it out, made sure they had plenty of color choices, and left the room. Both had great ideas, and it freed me up to do others stages of the process.

Last night, I was happily labeling all of our hard work and had most of it listed on the venues I use. I still have a few I need to put finishing touches on and to take pictures of, but I can do that during the week.

Other than that, we had a cookout yesterday with spare ribs, potato salad, and corn on the cob. I just love using the grill during the summer. It helps keep the temp down in the house, and nothing beats a grilled piece of meat. Naps for everyone afterwards, with full stomaches and traces of bbq sauce smudges on noses or cheeks and smiles of contentment. All in all it was a great weekend, with great weather and some really nice family time.

Now it is back to the grindstone, and looking at the calendar to take some time off from work. A few days off does so much to energize me, I need to plan more instead of just taking the usual holiday days off. Hope everyone else had a great weekend, and hey...short work-week! Bonus!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Dishcloth mania

Since learning to knit back in February, I have accumulated a LOT of dishcloths. I had joined 2 dishcloth KAL's, one is weekly, one is bi-monthly. I have learned a ton about knitting over the past few months by knitting these little beauties. Some I was not so thrilled about, some I made a few of. I have given a few away, but as you can see by the pictures, I still have plenty for myself.

I like the quick satisfaction from knitting dishcloths. One or two nights watching TV and knitting and I have a finished project.

I also knitted one mitt, and need to do the other one. It was a lot easier than I thought it would be. So that is what I have been up to the past few months. (Please excuse the wayward shoe and the box in the background)

I haven't crocheted at all since taking up knitting, but I am going to start spreading it out and working on both types of projects now that I am comfortable enough with knitting.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Bon Jovi II

The concert was awesome! I had never been to one of their shows before, and they really put on a good one. A couple of observances...I didn't realize Jon was so short. And...I wouldn't dance with him at a club. The man is awkward. Just stand there Jon, smile your killer smile, and shake your booty occassionally, but PLEASE don't dance. My friend Michelle and I just looked at each other the first time he did some moves with a look of "REALLY???" All in all the show was so good, we forgave his dancing abilities.

It has been a long time since I have been to a concert, and if it wouldn't have been free...holy moly...I woulda had to take out a 2nd mortgage. The cost of everything is outrageous, or I am amazingly cheap. Probably a combo of both.

I have the rest of the week off from work, so today I pretty much did nothing. Tomorrow I have a list of things I want to get done around the house before I can reward myself with catching up on TiVo offerings and knitting. Does anyone else have to reward themselves this way in order to get housework done? Just curious. Because if I don't do it this way, I would never get any housework done.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Bon Jovi

I am going to the Bon Jovi/Daughtry concert tomorrow night! A couple of weeks ago a radio station was at the bowling center on league night for an hour doing a drawing for the concert. My daughter and I both entered hoping we would win. I had to twist my daughter's boyrfriend's arm to enter...

b/f: I don't like Bon Jovi. I never win anything.
me: Enter! if you win, Alyssa and I will go and you can stay home and babysit!

and my friend Michelle's arm to enter...

Michelle: I would like to enter, but I never win anything, plus, I don't want them giving my name away to everyone and have a bunch of sales calls. I just don't know...
me: Enter! You'll at least get a free pen out of it (she loves pens), and if you win, we can go and have a girls night out. It will be fine!

So they both reluctantly enter the drawing. Notice how I made sure that if either of them won, I got to go. :-D

The next day...I get a call from my daughter, about the same time I get a text from Michelle. You guessed it! Both Jerry (b/f) and Michelle won tickets! So we are all going to the concert tomorrow night! I know there were a few others who won tickets as well, so it must have been a small turnout for the radio station. These are pretty good seats, on the floor, one section back from the stage. Yay! find something to wear...!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Spring Fever

I have a pretty bad case of it! I was going to take last week off from work, as it was Spring Break for my son, I was going to spend some time with my daughter and new grandson as well. My son ended up going to see his Uncle in Brunswick to try out the charter fishing business, to see if it is something he wants to do over the summer. I was cool with that, and since my daughter and grandson live with me, it wasn't like I never see them. I decided to save the time off for another time. Last week it was absolutely beautiful here. If you don't take into account the pine pollen that was dusting everything it was very nice.

What happened over the weekend? Well, was beautiful, until around the time I got off work. Then severe thunderstorms hit around 9pm. Saturday was rainy, and Sunday was sunny, but very windy and not as warm as it looked. So, now I am kicking myself for not taking last week off, since the weekends don't seem to want to cooperate! I am going to ask my boss today if there is a week in the next month or so that would be more convenient for me to take off than another. (Of course in his mind, no week is convenient...but oh well.) I think I just need to get out in the yard, plant some flowers, go to the park, crochet/knit outside on my deck, and do some of the not-so-fun stuff like clean out the garage and the car, but still be outside enjoying the weather.

I have done some dyeing, and again, I thought I would be able to take advantage of nice weather to hang it outside to dry, but that wasn't meant to be. I have become completely obsessed with knitting, so haven't done any crocheting since early February. I feel guilty about all my crochet hooks and thread are peeking over the top of my work basket saying "what about us?" I know they aren't, but still...

I am going to start dividing up my knitting and crocheting time a little more now that I have the hang of knitting. I was afraid to put it down for any length of time, since I was still learning, I didn't want to forget. I seem to have a short memory span until I am really comfortable with something. I have a Between Meals doily that is about 50% done that I want to finish crocheting, and a Prairie Star quiltghan that I want to give to my Grandma. She was so impressed with the one I made for my Mom, that I decided the one I was making for myself, I would finish up and give to her instead, for her birthday. Guess I better hurry, her birthday is in a couple of weeks!

I am off to find out when I can take some time off...then I am going to write a note to Mother Nature to let her know when my week off is, so she can work on nice weather for that week. Maybe if I give her plenty of warning, she will be able to accomodate me? LOL!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Shameless Plug

I am having an auction blitz in my eBay store this weekend. I am having 1-day auctions, that will begin listing @ noon eastern standard time. So far I have 8 listings planned, but once I actually start bundling the auction items up, I may have a few more. Auctions will be spaced out, so they won't all end on the same time on Sunday. I am still deciding on 15 or 30 minute increments between auctions.

Stop in and check it out if you get a chance! Bre-Aly Threads

I had quite a bit of success on the one I ran in February, to make room for new inventory, so hoping that it goes well again.

I can't figure out how I used to work part-time on the weekends. I don't have time to get everything done now that I am not did I get it done before? I do have to admit though, I get more sleep and don't feel as tired, so I guess I was giving up sleep to get everything done before.

Yes...even with a new baby in the house, I am getting plenty of sleep. Now my daughter on the other hand...she may not be. This is the reward for me not trading (or killing) her when she was growing up and tested my limits, or is it revenge?...I get to roll over and cover my head when Aiden wakes up at night while she has to get up. *evil laugh* He and I have lots of bonding time in the evening and on weekends though, he is so much fun!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Aiden Bryce is here!

My grandson Aiden Bryce arrived at 11:31 on March 22nd weighing in at 6lbs 2oz. He is doing very well, and we are VERY excited he is here.

He decided he would arrive 3 1/2 weeks early, so he caught us off guard. My daughter's baby shower was scheduled for 3/24, so we had to put that on hold, and I didn't have a thing crocheted or knit for him yet! Of course, I am the biggest procrastinator in the world anyway, so this wasn't a great shock. I am sure he will have plenty of blankets and socks over the next several years. We had been busy getting the house ready for him though, by dusting and shampooing carpets and such, so at least that was done.

Having said all that, I haven't been checking blogs much in the past month or so. In addition to getting the house "baby" ready, I have also been busy trying to paint my bedroom, and move the furniture around to be more craft friendly. I knit or crochet while I wind down and catch up on whatever TiVo records for me each evening, but even that has been minimal.

No thread dyeing either. Hoping to get back on the dyeing wagon soon, and even give 4-ply dishcloth cotton a try. Still want to dye some smaller thread sizes as well. I found an awesome kitchen hutch on craigslist that is perfect for all of my thread inventory and dyeing supplies. So instead of having it strewn all over the house and bags of dyed thread waiting to be shipped sitting on my bedroom floor, I have plastic bins and shelves to put it all on and actually be *gasp* organized!

So now that things are settling down into a routine, I am hoping to get back to my hobbies. Nice thing about being a grandma, is that I get to cuddle and love on him, but I don't have to get up in the middle of the night, I can roll over and put the pillow over my head. Side note: I am going by GeeBee (G.B. - Grandma Brenda), because I am just not ready to be called "Grandma" was bad enough I turned 40 in November...I don't need to be called Grandma too!!! LOL

I haven't forgotten about my Pay It Forward gals either...good thing I have a year! But I should have some things ready to go out in the very near future.

Saturday, February 16, 2008


Last Friday, I decided that my right hand WAS going to cooperate, and I WAS going to learn to knit. Efforts to learn over the Christmas holiday break had left me frustrated because after crocheting, knitting just made me feel like I had 20 fingers, and my right hand had a mind of it's own (I'm a leftie).

I joined a dishcloth KAL on Yahoo, picked a pattern, and jumped in using some helpful knitting videos I found online. Much easier than trying to learn it from a book. I had to make the decision to learn to knit English or Continental, because to learn the left-handed message would mean that I would have to continually make modify patterns (from what I gathered)to allow for knitting left-handed. That didn't sound fun. (I have never had to modify a pattern to crochet left-handed.) I decided to go with the English version, although from what I have read, Continental is easier. I may try that at another time. Start with the difficult, then move to the easy...right? So...I jumped in...

Here is my first completed dishcloth...

It is far from perfect, but I started over more times than I care to count, and frogged back several times as well. It's not as easy to frog back in knitting as crocheting, I discovered. So I was pretty much ready to be done, and tired of going back, so I just pressed on until I was finished.

And my second...

If you look closely, you can see a butterfly pattern. I probably should have used a solid color to do this in, but it is what I had in my stash from a previous CAL in the 'Ville that I never finished. I didn't have to start over but once, but still had to frog back quite a few times, but it went better.

I sent both of these to my Mom for her birthday, cuz what Mom doesn't like to get handmade things from their kids? I felt like I was back in kindergarten and did my first fingerpainting...LOL! I have a couple more in progress, and with each one I get better. I like it more and more, and my right hand has become quite cooperative now that it has figured out what the heck is going on. I'm stubborn that way.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Gone in 30 minutes!

When I started dyeing thread, and then decided to try selling it on eBay, I didn't have high expectations of amazing sales until I built up some regular customers and had been on for awhile (6 months of selling or longer). I didn't actively use eBay until last year, even though I have had an account for years. My feedback stars are low, but I have 100% positive feedback, but those were all for buying, not selling.
I tried Etsy...thinking it was more crafty-based, and I didn't even get any hits on it at all. So, I went back to eBay.

My first couple of auctions went for the starting bid of .99. Alright...gotta start somewhere right? AND...I got my first seller feedback. Still going on 100%. Next round had a couple of new bidders, but the same bidder that won my first auction won this one. Which is alright too, repeat business doesn't hurt. Then I put up a few threads at Buy it Now pricing, and those went alright. My first auction winner has been a regular customer, buying threads each time I have some available. She was also very helpful with suggestions, (pastels, Buy it Now, keywords for title, etc.) After my first couple of offerings, I decided it would be much easier to have a store. At this point, I am not really making a profit, but what I am making is paying for more thread to dye, new dye colors and my seller fees on eBay.

So...I opened my store on December 20th. Put up my first inventory, sprinkled with some auctions to draw in new customers. It went steadily. I was pleased. The batch I dyed last weekend, was going to be ready for listing on Wednesday, so I put a note in my header that new colorways would arrive on date/time. I had them scheduled, so @ 8pm on the dot, there they were all pretty and shining in my store. So, being satisfied everything was listed as scheduled, I go get something to eat, watch a little TV, trying to stay away from my computer and hitting refresh every 2 seconds. Something about a watched pot doesn't boil...

I couldn't stand it anymore, and had to go check to see if I had any interest what-so-ever...imagine my suprise when I refresh my store, and all of my new inventory is missing!!!...with the exception of 1 colorway I had just added, they were gone. What did eBay do with them? What the heck? I am going to have to figure out what I did wrong! Lo and behold I open my Selling Manager page (which I should have done to start with)...and I had sold all those missing balls in the first 30 minutes!!! OH MY!!! Mystery of the disappearing inventory solved!

I don't know if it will go that way all the time, but it sure was exciting and fun! I am going to dye some more this weekend, and hopefully up the production quantity. I have been being careful so as not to mess up a whole bunch, but I think I have the process down now, so feel comfortable doing bigger lots.

Just had to share!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Thank You Christina!

Thank you Christina! I received my first Pay It Forward item! It came at a time where a smile and a warm fuzzy feeling were needed and much apprciated.

Now I have to get busy on the items for my PIF. I know I have a year, but I am a notorious procrastinator, and if I don't get on it now, then I will be scrambling later, and I don't want to do that. I am a big thread crocheter, so more than likely it will be something done in thread.

While I wait for my camera batteries to charge, I am off to start another batch of my dyed threads. My last batch did pretty well, and if I don't get on the stick then I am going to run out of inventory.

Thanks for the kind words and support for my blahs. They are getting better. I guess blahs are kind of like gaining weight, building up gradually, and you can't git rid you can't get rid of it overnight. I know everyone has to deal with both the blahs and weight occassionally, so it is good to know there are others who understand. One day at a time!

Monday, January 7, 2008

New Year Blahs

I don't know what it is, but I thought with the holidays over, I would get out of my gritchy holiday mood I always fall into. Not so. Everything feels overwhelming. It didn't help that Yahoo had an article on their homepage one day last week about how an unorganized/cluttered home (like mine, can be a sign of everything from ADHD, depression, all the way up to a brain disorder. In fact, there weren't many mental conditions left out of the list. So, not only am I an unorganized clutterbug, I am a mental-case too! LOL Soooo...I pondered that over some crocheting.

After such a productive week off, I have not been able to crochet much. I get about 30 minutes in before I go to bed. My 'Ashley' doily is coming along slowly. I am to the spirals though, and once I get past those little buggers, I think it will go pretty quick. Last nights efforts however were lost, as I discovered a mistake and had to frog back to where I had started when I sat down. Better there than after I was done with all of them right? I have to do some counting, but I may be off even further back than that. I am hoping not, but I was tired last night, so when I counted the spirals I did have, and what I need to have, I seem to have some extras on one side. I am going to recount tonight and I hope I am wrong. I should have some photos for the next blog to show the progress. Right now, it just looks a little funny with all these spirals (I have to do 80) hanging around the edge.

Happy Crocheting everyone!