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Completed Projects for 2008

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I busily crocheted for the first 7 months this year and then burnt out on crocheting. I did, however, begin the first step in quilting: cutting fabric into squares, rectangles, and triangles and then sewing them together. Using the pieced squares, I made Quilt Block Curtains to hang in my craft room.

When crocheting, I sit in the living room and watch TV while following a pattern in a book or making it up as I go after I've selected the yarn to be used. I don't need to move for hours!

Quilting is much more interactive. I sit or stand and think and select a pattern to use. I stand and think and select fabric and measure fabric and cut fabric. And, I sit and think and move between the work table and the sewing machine to layout fabric pieces and pin them together to be sewn and then sew them - and sometimes pull out the stitches and restitch. A DVR-recorded television show or DVD or music CD is playing in the background.

2008 Projects in Review

Crochet: 19 lap blankets for donation; 1 lap blanket for a gift; 1 round lap blanket for me.

Knitting: Nada. Nothing.

Sewing and Quilting: 1 set of quilt-top curtains using 24 12-1/4″ blocks; 12 12″ quilt blocks.

The Project List:

  1. Quilt Block Curtains for craft room using 24 varied 12-1/4″ quilt blocks (start Jul. 13; finish Dec. 20)
  2. 24 12 1/4″ (including 1/4″ seam allowance) varied quilt blocks for Quilt Block Curtains for craft room (start Jul. 19; finish Nov. 2)
  3. 12 12″ (including 1/4″ seam allowance) varied quilt blocks left over to use for a quilt (start Jul. 19; finish Nov. 2)
  4. Primary Colors Granny Square Lap Blanket - Blue, Green, Red, Multis of Blue / Green / Red, black (start Jul. 5; finish Jul. 23)
  5. Custom Granny Square Lap Blanket - Print Pastels, Blue, Yellow, Pink (start Jun. 29; finish Jul. 7)
  6. Granny Square Lap Blanket - Pinks, Blue, White, Beige, Yellow, Baby Pastels (start Jun. 22; finish Jun. 29)
  7. Hexagon Lap Blanket - Greys, Red, White (start Jun. 8; too hot to continue hiding yarn ends Jun. 18; finish Jun. 29)
  8. Blue and Gold Blocks Lap Blanket - Blue, Gold, Green, Red, Orange (start May 31; too hot to continue hiding yarn ends Jun. 8; finish Jun. 29)
  9. Granny Squares with Flowers Lap Blanket - Scraps (start May 18; finish May 31)
  10. Flower Centers Granny Square Lap Blanket - Melon, Purple, Yellow, Baby Print, Light Yellow, White (start May 3; finish May 18)
  11. Round Wheel Lap Blanket - Burgundy, Multi (start Apr. 14; finish May 3)
  12. 4-Patch Granny Lap Blanket - Pink, Blue (start Apr. 3; finish Apr. 11)
  13. Double Crochet Striped Squares Lap Blanket - Pink, Blue, White, Purples (start Mar. 19; finish Apr. 1)
  14. Flowers in Snow Granny Square Lap Blanket - White, Coral, Green, White-Pink-Green-Yellow Multi (start Mar. 28; finish Mar. 31)
  15. Panel Variety Lap Blanket - Green, Purple, Off-White (start Mar. 20; finish Mar. 24)
  16. 6-patch Striped Squares Lap Blanket - Pink, Off-White (start Mar. 10; finish Mar. 18)
  17. Steps with Ruffle Border Lap Blanket - Red, White (start Mar. 2; finish Mar. 9)
  18. Offset Log Cabin Lap Blanket - Greens, White, Black (start Feb. 23; finish Mar. 2)
  19. Log Cabin Lap Blanket - Greens, White, Black (start Feb. 17; finish Feb. 23)
  20. Double Crochet Scraps Panels with Black Lap Blanket (start Feb. 13; finish Feb. 17)
  21. Granny Square Lap Blanket - White, Greens, Pinks, Yellows, Blues, Grey, Purple (start Feb. 10 using leftover squares from blanket just finished; finished Feb. 12)
  22. Granny Square Lap Blanket - White, Tan, Greens, Pinks, Yellows, Blues (start Jan. 22, 2007; put aside early Feb. after 20 squares; picked up again May 28; put down again May 29, 2007; finally finished Feb. 10, 2008)
  23. Flower Picture Afghan Lap Blanket - White, Reds, Greens (start Jan. 21; finish Feb. 7)
  24. Filet Pinwheel Granny Square Lap Blanket - Greens (start Jan. 2; finish Jan. 14)

Projects started in 2008 but not completed yet:

  • Quilt using 12 12″ (including 1/4″ seam allowance) left over varied quilt blocks from Quilt Block Curtains (start Jul. 2008; 12 blocks done Nov. 2; quilt top in progress)
  • Houses art quilt - fusing (start Oct. 17, 2008; in limbo)
  • Garden art quilt - fusing (start Oct. 16, 2008; in limbo)
  • Hexagon Mile-A-Minute Lap Blanket - Blue, White, Blue-White Multi (start Jul. 24; got bored with crocheting and too hot so in limbo)
  • Ripple Lap Blanket - Multi, Burgundy (start Jan. 15; got bored with it so in limbo)
  • Ripple Lap Blanket - White, Lavender (start May 29, 2007; Jun. 2 put aside for Pineapple Blanket, then Babette Blanket; still in limbo)

Projects started in 2006 but put not completed yet:

  • Keepsake Kitty Wall Hanging (start May 7, 2006; top nearly done except for applique tail Jun. 2, 2006; now in limbo; March 2008 sewed/appliqued the cat's tail onto the pattern; again in limbo; Dec. 2008 began quilting the top-batting-backing "sandwich")

Photos of my craft room

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These photos were taken on August 3 after a few weekends of quilt block piecing.

From the doorway:

20080803craftroom4.jpg 20080803craftroom5.jpg

From the opposite corner:

20080803craftroom1.jpg 20080803craftroom2.jpg 20080803craftroom3.jpg

Update for August

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A month since my last post! I'm just not feeling bloggy. Here's an update:

20080808greglaurenweddingrings.jpgMy son is married! Greg and Lauren tied the knot in a simple ceremony on August 8. I flew in Thursday evening and flew back Friday evening after a nice lunch for just the 3 of us after the ceremony. They took off for the weekend on a short honeymoon to the wine country about an hour away from where they live. Then, on Monday, Greg started his new job as an attorney working for a mid-sized litigation firm. Whew - big changes!

My new shoes: The brown Ros Rhommerson Cynthia shoes I wore at my son's marriage ceremony are comfortable - as long as I don't walk in them. Ack!

The muscles in my feet, ankles, knees, and lower back just weren't up to walking in 2 1/2 inch heels! Now, the black Hugh Puppies Sara shoes with a 1 1/4 inch heel don't hurt me nearly as much!

I don't think the problem with the brown shoes is the shoes - as I said, they're comfortable. I do think the problem is that I'm so used to wearing fully-padded New Balance walking shoes with basically no heal height, that the muscles needed to walk in 2 1/2 inch heels just aren't up to snuff! Because of that, I haven't yet worn the black shoes with 2 1/2 inch heels!

Our home: We're having 5 of the windows in our house replaced on Tuesday - livingroom, kitchen (front window), craft room, bathroom, and TV room - by American Vision Windows.

After that's done, we're thinking about hiring a painter to finish painting the outside trim (a project started last summer but not finished) and paint the house (we're still not happy with the medium grey colored stucco). I'm now thinking a creamy light yellow which will work fine with the white trim.

Bryan brought a girl for dinner! My stepson brought his latest girlfriend Brit to our house for dinner last night - something neither Bill nor I can remember him ever doing before!

Together, Bill and I have joked that, since Billy got married on 7/7/2007 and Greg got married on 8/8/2008 that Bryan may get married on 9/9/2009.

In fun, we mentioned that to Bryan several weeks ago and he responded that maybe 12/12/2012 would be the date he gets married! Of course, there's no rush for him to get married! I just thought it interesting that he brought Brit over for dinner.

Crocheting: No crocheting in the past 4 weeks or so. Just not into it right now.

Quilting / sewing: I bought storage containers and many more fat quarters at JoAnn Fabrics (I couldn't resist the 99¢ sale!) to add to my fabric collection. The weather has been hot so it's taken some effort to get around to washing and ironing all the new fabric - but I just finished this afternoon.

20080830kylebusch.jpg NASCAR: Kyle Busch won his 18th race of the year last night! As I type this, he's working on his 9th Cup series win! Tony Stewart hasn't (yet!) won a race, but at this moment he's one of the 12 drivers qualifying to be in the Chase for the Cup and he still has a chance to win this year's championship!

Update for the end of July

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Well, let's see, the past 2 weeks have been a bit eventful!

My son is getting married! Yup, I'm gonna have another daughter(-in-law)! Whoop!

Last year, my stepson Billy got married on July 7, 2007 (777 or 7-7-07 or 07-07-07 or 070707) - a popular day to get married last year!

Greg proposed on July 19 in a field while they were picking raspberries and, practical people that they are, they decided to skip a big wedding ceremony (and all that goes with it) and get married right away - on Friday, August 8, 2008 (888 or 8-8-08 or 08-08-08 or 080808). Eight to the Chinese culture is a very lucky number. Neither of them is Chinese, but I'm sure their marriage will by a good one! Lauren and Greg make a great couple!

Greg asked his current boss, a judge, to marry them. The simple ceremony will be at the courthouse.

Parties (more formally known as wedding receptions) will be held at family homes in Oregon and California for family and friends local to those areas. We haven't set a date yet, but at our house, the party will be a small affair with close family and a few close neighbors.

Then, on Monday after the wedding, Greg starts his new job as an attorney for a mid-sized litigation firm. How cool is that?! Married and a new job all in the same 4 days!

20080803newrefrigerator.jpg On the home front: The new refrigerator fit perfectly! Whoop! We love the clear shelves and drawers - and can now see what's inside the drawers and we can stop forgetting what's in the them!

Bill and I are heading to the lake tomorrow! A whole day off together!

On the crochet front: Two more lap blankets are done (no photos for posting yet) and one more started.

On the quilting front: Yes, I said "quilting"! I began piecing blocks together on July 12 and have finished 4 since then! Also no photos yet.


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I just realized I haven't posted in a month! Not much going on, I guess.

On the crochet front: There are 5 more lap blankets to photograph and post about. I'm currently working on 2 more. I've been adding to my pattern collection through regular hunts on eBay.

On the Bay Area weather front: There have been a few rainy days in the past few weeks, but mostly it's been sunny - and today is just beautiful! I still haven't gotten the gardening bug, but I expect I will with more sunny weekends.

On the home front: Cleo and Jasmine are healthy and loving. Bill and I are healthy, not-so-wealthy (but we're comfortable), and wise!

Bill has said he wants to take very other Friday off during the time the college where I work switches to 4 10-hour day work weeks this summer. Hmmm, we'll see if that really happens! The workaholic in him may not let him take 3-day weekends through the summer. He works most Saturdays now - which means 1-day weekends. What's he going to do with himself during regular 3-day weekends? Hmmm, let's see…I suppose he can start by finishing painting the trim on the house! Right now, we're probably not going to re-paint the house, since the medium grey color looks better with the white trim.

On the money front: Gas prices are going up. Food prices are going up. The stock market goes up, then down, then up, then down. Interest rates are down. My retirement account balances are down.

On the California state budget front: The state is cutting education budgets this year and next year. This "year" is a fiscal year that ends June 30, 2008. So, the budget cuts for this "year" need to be made out of the remaining 3 months or so of a budget that was prepared in fall 2006 and has been guiding the college since July 1, 2007.

And next year's budget (July 1, 2008 - June 30, 2009) is also being cut, including that we won't be getting increases in funding that had been expected (well, as "expected" as you can get when you know the state is having budget problems). So that means another hiring freeze, increasing expenses (for utilities and supplies and equipment and computers and software and …) out of a budget that isn't increasing, and more cut backs and doing without at the college.

We haven't come back from the last big budget cuts several years ago. We still put off buying office supplies. We still have unfilled positions, with other people picking up those duties - which makes for very busy (and potentially burned-out) workers.

There are things we should or could be doing that we can't do because there aren't enough people, there isn't enough money for the people or supplies or equipment, there isn't enough time in the day to do what needs to be done.

Ack. Enough of that depressing talk.

On the family front: My son will be visiting for a few days next week! Whoop! And I'm taking 3 days vacation next week. I think a 2-day work week is just what I need - as long as the nice sunny springtime weather holds!

Bill is flying to Maui on Tuesday to visit his son for about a week. And, no, I don't mind him going to Hawaii without me. After our last trip to Maui in July last year for Billy's wedding, I'm all Maui-ed out and don't want to go back. Too windy, too crowded, incompetent airline staff, reserved seats that weren't reserved, too windy, too crowded. Did I mention too crowded and too windy? Oh, and incompetent airline staff and no seats reserved even though I reserved seats? Did I mention crying - not just a few tears, but real crying - in frustration and anger and flying-related stress after finally getting through security? No, I'm definitely not ready for another Maui trip.

Or any other trip requiring a airplane.

Even my December trip to Oregon to visit my son just about wore me out - 2 flight delays and a flight switch.

On the job front: After over 6 years at the college, I still enjoy my job. There are projects and enhancements - and a redesign - that need to happen, but I don't have the time and there doesn't seem to be money in the budget to get me a reliable, knowledgeable assistant, so those things are remaining undone. As they have for the past 3-4 years. The website design is 6 years old and needs to be changed. I'm gradually, as time permits, doing what I can behind the scenes in the XHTML markup to make it more straightforward to switch over to a new design when (if) the time comes.

I like the people. I like the higher education environment. I like the campus location, nestled in the foothills surrounded by open hillsides, trees, cows, horses, birds, and squirrels. I feel I'm appreciated, valued, and respected as a person and in my job. I'm not so keen on some things and a couple of the people can be very irritating, but the advantages and things I like far outweigh those.

On the NASCAR front: My boys Tony Stewart and Kyle Busch are doing well so far! Kyle is number 1 in points! I still say he's gonna win the Cup this year.


Completed Projects for 2007

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I still crochet a great deal of the time - it's still my number one hobby. The number of projects completed this year is just over half of last year - but many of the projects were large blankets and some had a lot of time-consuming yarn ends to hide.

In 2007, I pursued learning to knit (again - for the third time), but it still hasn't taken with me. Of course, if I don't continue working with it, knitting doesn't have a chance of becoming "second nature" for me like crocheting is! I haven't given up my desire to make colorful knitted socks, but I also haven't become comfortable enough with knitting using 2 knitting needles to want to try to handle 4 or 5 double-pointed knitting needles.

With regard to sewing and quilting, the desire to play with colorful fabric is there. However, I still haven't gotten around to getting comfortable with it. Someday…

2007 Projects in Review

Crochet: 1 huge full-size afghan (my Babette Blanket), 1 large round 6-point to 24-point afghan, 4 full-size blankets, 8 lap blankets (7 donated, 1 gift), 6 scarves, 2 headbands, 1 cardigan, 1 hat, 1 cat-size blanket.

Knit: 1 head band.

Sewing and Quilting: Zero, zip, nada. Bah! The year slid by with no progress here! Didn't finish the Keepsake Kitty Wall Hanging, and didn't start any new sewing or quilting projects.

The Project List:

  1. Ripple Blanket for Bill (start Aug. 18; then too hot so put aside to do granny squares; picked up again Dec. 12; finish Dec. 22)
  2. Stone Path Hat - Browns (start Dec. 3; finish Dec. 11)
  3. Patchwork Solid Granny Squares Blanket for Bryan (start Aug. 25; finish Sep. 30)
  4. Babette Blanket for me (start Jun. 24; finish Aug. 13)
  5. Pineapple Blanket for Billy and Rowena Wedding - White (start Jun. 2; finish Jun. 23)
  6. Delicate Summer Jacket Cardigan for me - Purple Cotton-Ease (start May 10; finish May 28)
  7. Simple Knitted Head Band for me - Green Sugar 'n' Cream Cotton (start May 7; finish May 8;)
  8. Ripple Lap Blanket - White, Pastel Scraps (start Apr. 6; finish May 6)
  9. Sampler Stripes Blanket for Elizabeth - Green, Maroon, Pink, White (start Apr. 19; finish Apr. 30)
  10. 6-point to 24-point Round Ripple Blanket for William - Greens, Blues, Multi (start Apr. 7; finish Apr. 18)
  11. Ripple Lap Blanket - White, Cream, Dark Scraps (start Mar. 31; finish Apr. 4)
  12. Ripple Lap Blanket for Candace - Purples (start Mar. 22; finish Mar. 31)
  13. Ripple Scarf - Beige/Cream, Cream (start Mar. 18; finish Mar. 21)
  14. Ripple Scarf - Gold/Orange, Cream (start Mar. 13; finish Mar. 17)
  15. Ripple Scarf - Black/Grey, Cream (start Mar. 13; finish Mar. 15)
  16. Round Motif Scarf - Cream, Gold/Orange, Black/Grey (start Mar. 3; finish Mar. 12)
  17. Ripple Lap Blanket - Blues, Greens, Tans (start Mar. 4; finish Mar. 11)
  18. Head Band for me - White, Purple, Green, Blue (start Mar. 8; finish Mar. 9)
  19. Head Band for me - Purple, Green, Blue (start/finish Mar. 8)
  20. Burgundy Shells Scarf (start Feb. 25; finish Mar. 3)
  21. Octagon Cat Blanket (started as a baby blanket) - Dark and Light Turquoise (start Dec. 16, 2006; Dec. 17 need more yarn; Mar. 3, 2007 decided to finish off as is and use for a cat blanket)
  22. Long Soft Warm Scarf for me - Black, Brown, Tan, Pale Blue, Cream, Blue-Purple (start/finish Feb. 25; ooops! too long: shortened Feb. 28)
  23. Cluster and Lace Granny Square Lap Blanket - Red, Pink, White (start Feb. 9; finish Feb. 17)
  24. Calico Lap Blanket - Red, Pink, Light Green, White (start Feb. 4; finish Feb. 9)
  25. 9-patch Granny Square Lap Blanket - Blue, Beige, Off White, Multi (start Jan. 4; finish Jan. 21)
  26. Granny Square Lap Blanket - Pinks (start Jan. 13; finish Jan. 17)

Projects started in 2007 but not completed yet:

  • Ripple Lap Blanket - White, Lavender (start May 29, 2007; Jun. 2 put aside for Pineapple Blanket, then Babette Blanket)
  • Granny Square Lap Blanket - White, Tan, Green, Pink, Yellow, Blue (start Jan. 22, 2007; put aside early Feb. after 20 squares; picked up again May 28; put down again May 29)

Projects started in 2006 but put not completed yet:

  • Keepsake Kitty Wall Hanging (start May 7, 2006; top nearly done except for applique tail Jun. 2, 2006; now in limbo)

Projects started in 2005 but put on hold and then pulled out to re-use the yarn:

  • Not completed: Jazzy Beach Wrap (cardigan) for me (start Mar. 24, 2005; put aside Apr. 13, 2005; pulled out Feb. 18, 2007)

Patterns can be made in any color

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Why do people include color in search terms?

Pretty much any pattern can be made in any color. Why search for "purple granny square" or "red and yellow ripple afghan"?

There are some patterns best created with light-colored yarn so the texture or detail of the design is more easily seen - like "aran crochet afghan" or "fisherman crochet sweater". And, yes, some patterns look great in contrasting colors - like "black and white crochet".

But try searching for the type of pattern not the color of the pattern - like "checkerboard afghan crochet pattern", "basketweave crochet pattern", "lacy granny square", or "reversible baby blanket".

If you're using the name of a color in your search term, try the search without the color specified and you'll get more results. Learn to look at pictures of projects without focusing on the colors used by the designer. There might be a blue and yellow ripple afghan pattern that would look great in red and yellow.

Crochet? Not lately.

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Hmmm, this blog used to have quite a bit of crochet project news. Not lately. I think I burned out on Bryan's Lap Blanket (which I haven't posted about yet - burned out, ya know!) which I started right after finishing my beautiful Babette Blanket.

I finished Bryan's blanket on September 30 so it's been almost 6 weeks now. It's been a busy 6 weeks too! Painting the trim on our house (white over chocolate brown - tough!), moving this blog to Movable Type 4.01, moving Tame My Mind - Imagery to Movable Type 4.01, thinking about applying for the open position at work, thinking about it more…and more…and finally spending 23 hours last weekend working on application materials and my online portfolio.

I still have three crochet projects in progress/on hold:

  • Ripple Blanket for Bill's side of the bed (start Aug. 18; then too hot so put aside to do granny squares)
  • Ripple Lap Blanket - White, Lavender (start May 29; Jun. 2 put aside for Pineapple Blanket, then Babette Blanket)
  • Granny Square Lap Blanket - White, Tan, Green, Pink, Yellow, Blue (start Jan. 22; put aside early Feb. after 20 squares; picked up again May 28; put down again May 29)

But I also have quite a few skeins of Caron Simply Soft in the bright colors - love 'em!

Decisions, decisions…

I am thoroughly spoiled - dinner's ready!

Via WheatCarr, I learned the U.S. Postal Service offers 41¢ stamps in 4 knit designs - called 2007 Holiday Knits. The designs are a reindeer, Christmas tree, snowman, and teddy bear.

Hmmm, no crocheted designs?

Got it! Ravelry invite!

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20071015logoravelrybeta.gif My Ravelry invite arrived the other day! I've gotten as far as signing up (I'm "cherylcrochets") and taking a brief look around. Good grief! 586 Ravelers are online at this moment! Wow!

I'm not sure just how much I'm going to input into my account there. I use my blog for tracking current and future projects. I'm not interested in tracking how much yarn I have on hand. But, I'm looking forward to seeing what other people are making!

Sketch of Cheryl

About Cheryl

Enjoys crocheting, gardening, cats, NASCAR (especially Tony Stewart and Kyle Busch!), reading, photography, snorkeling in Kailua-Kona with sea turtles, Sizzler's Mega Bacon Cheeseburgers, hot and iced decaf coffee, dark chocolate, color (yarn, fabric), playing around with web technologies - not necessarily in that order! Still very much a beginner with quilting, knitting, and sewing. Donates crocheted lap blankets.

List maker, detail-oriented, organized, leans heavily toward perfectionism. ISTJ. Libra.

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Cat playing with strand of yarn.


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