Sunday, December 26, 2010

Merry Christmas to all & to all a good night

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Christmas has come and gone. 

At least we have heat, a roof over our heads, food in the fridge and our medication.  My darling son came and spent Friday with us which was a treat. He's maturing so much now. Every time I see him, his mental capacities have improved. His birthday is on Monday, 26 years old then.

I'm down with a cold I'm trying really hard to not let get any worse. I have COPD and a cold for me is not a good thing. Colds have a tendency of turning into something a lot worse through no fault of my own.  Let's hope I can stay our of the ER this year!

Merry Christmas to all and to all a Good Night

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Crochet

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Talk about last minute presents!!!

A 3 year old little girl who loves pink and snowflakes!
What to make?
Of course, a hat, scarf and mittens!
And which pattern to choose from?
Smoothfox's of course!

I used the easiest hat pattern ever.
Just follow this link and you too can enjoy making this super warm super easy hat.
Just check out the name LOL Brain Dead Easy Short Row Hat
Scroll down the right side of her blog and you will find the pattern listed under free patterns. The hat was amazingly easy to crochet. I added a white snowflake taken from the Sugar scarf motif so it looks like a snowflake landed on her cute little head. I also added an earflap piece that wraps around to the other ear giving extra warmth for her neck. The flap can be turned inside when it's not needed and still gives extra warmth over the ears.

I then decided to use another one of her patterns for the scarf.
The Sugar Scarf. Same deal as above, scroll down to the list of free patterns on the right side of her blog and you will find it listed under free patterns. I added a snowflake on both sides of the last snowflake on one end of the scarf. It makes it easier to pull through the open spaces between each snowflake. Makes the scarf adjustable and there's no chance of it falling off since it's joined. The scarf is long enough to be wrapped around her head twice and still be able to thread the last snowflake through an opening at the other end. She should be nice and cozy all winter :)

For the mittens, I designed my own pattern. I wasn't happy with the mitten patterns I'd found searching through the internet. They turned out quite cute, especially after I sewed on a downsized version of the Sugar scarf snowflake into the palm of each hand. That way she's always caught a snowflake.
Unfortunately, the only photos I have are of the hat and scarf modelled by my big baby doll. Still all looks very cute. 

And to finish off, I designed a crocheted kitty toy for her to have and take along wherever she goes. She loves kitties and this one will definitely be a favorite.! I used eyelash yarn together with the yarn I'd used for the kitty to crochet the tail. It turned out very cute and curly twirly. A little girl's dream come true.

My apologies for wonky photos and layout. Blogger decided it wasn't going to resize the photos or place them where I put them.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


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washichu: the name given to white men by the Lakota people, also means greedy, those who take the best meat.

While listening to this talk, I cried, tears that would not stop falling, my heart breaking with each photo.

The stories vary but the people who came to north america on the big ships, settled here, grew families, took more and more land using treaties that weren't worth the paper they were written on considering how well they ignored these treaties.

So how much longer do these people have to live in abject poverty before they are given their rights, their lands, their pride and freedom? How much longer do they have to wait for what is rightfully theirs?


Monday, December 20, 2010

Sleigh Ride the Amigurumi way

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Another video done by U900, the amigurumi ukulele duo. Watch the piano playing bear, even his foot taps to the beat! A lot of attention was paid to setting up each character for the stop motion filming.


Monday, December 13, 2010

10 Years Ago Today

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We had met on an online role playing community. He was a stealthy good looking thief, I was a half-elf ranger forever roaming, perpetually lost, wandering around Realms of Despair looking for something more to my life.
As usual, I wandered into an otherwise unexplored area of the main city which turned out to be thieves alley. And what resides there, the Thief Guild of course and at it's entrance, a handsome thief talking business with another thief. I excused myself for walking in on their conversation and walked away, but not without taking a good look at the handsome thieves bio. I sent him a message saying that I liked his bio. Within seconds of the message being sent, there standing next to me is the handsome thief. Gasp!

We introduced ourselves, and started talking about anything and everything and quickly discovered that we had a lot in common. Every day we met online, and the conversation kept going, days passed, weeks passed and still we talked about everything and anything and had now moved to finishing each other's sentences and knowing what the other was thinking before a word was uttered. A month went by, a second month went by and a third. The friendship kept growing as we became closer and closer. Then horror of horror, my handsome thief was losing internet access for an indefinite period of time. What to do, what to do! We turned to letter writing, not email, but actual pen and paper and envelopes and stamps. We corresponded the old fashioned way for at least six months with letters crossing paths on their way to Belgium and Canada. We talked on the phone, and lost track of time. Whopping phone bills, but it had become love. There is no price for true love and call it what you may; soul mates or kindred spirits, we were hooked.

The good news came in the fall, my darling handsome thief wanted to meet me in person. Plans were laid out, flights reserved and the faithful day arrived, December 13th. The day I met my handsome thief for the first time at Dorval airport in Montreal. The flight landed in late afternoon. I had driven cross country from southern Ontario to be there in time. I was standing at the front of the welcoming crowd gathered at the exit for flight arrivals. Kept finding myself pushed further back by taller people until someone suggested I stand on their baggage trolley. So up I went, just to barely see over the shoulders of the people in front of me. So each time the doors opened, I would hop up to get a good view of the lines on the other side of the doors. After an hour of doing this, I was becoming worried that something had happened; that he'd missed his flight, or worse yet, that he'd gotten cold feet and cancelled at the last minute. I kept pushing back those awful thoughts because I knew he was near, I could feel it in my heart. So each time the doors opened, there I was doing the kangaroo hop to see my beloved thief. And finally! there he was at the back of a long line, he smiled when I waved at him when I'd hop up to see him better before the doors closed. And each time the doors opened, he was a little closer and finally, he was coming through the doors! My heart was beating so fast with anticipation, I jumped off the trolley, slipped under the cable keeping the crowd back and fell into his arms for the first of many many hugs. It felt like he was coming home after being away for a few months. Everything about him felt familiar. It felt so right, the way his arms went around me, feeling his breath against my forehead, the beating of his heart under my cheek. My darling thief was finally home.

We stayed in Montreal for a couple of days. It wasn't planned that way, but the airplane ride had jostled a kidney stone free and it was having a party of it's own coming down. So what is the first thing that any good canadian does to a newcomer to the country? Treat him to Timmy's of course LOL followed by pizza from Little Caesar. We also went to a grocery store and my darling's eyes just about popped out of his head, he'd never seen a huge grocery store like that before. Mind you, he'd never experienced snow either so to land in Montreal in December was quite the treat for him. He loved it and still does.

The drive back to southern Ontario was long and tiring. We stopped halfway just before Toronto for something to eat and I showed him on a map of Ontario how far we'd travelled. The distance was mind-boggling for him considering that Belgium fits in the Niagara Peninsula. He couldn't get over how much empty space there is and anyone who has driven the 401 length between Toronto and Kingston can vouch just how mind numbing that drive is. We finally got home late that night, and he got to meet my teenage son who instantly took a liking to my darling.

Happy anniversary my darling thief. 
Forever your Angel I'll be.

I love you forever and a day my beautiful green eyed man

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Amigurumi Jingle Bells

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This is so cute! and quite apt for most of Ontario... well except for Hamilton. We're 'still' without any of the white stuff. Just spoke with my Mom who is getting snow, sleet, freezing rain, snow, sleet, freezing rain, ad nauseum. 

So, without further ado, Jingle Bells done with amigurumi characters, a Japanese band called U900.

A lot of attention was paid to setting up each character for the stop motion filming.

They have several songs which can all be found on Youtube. Enjoy! :)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

30 foot lion creations for 2012 Olympics!

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What a fantastic way of showing off crochet's versatility!
I would give anything to be able to walk under and around those gorgeous lions once completed.

East Midlands from Artists Taking the Lead on Vimeo.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Fun with crochet testing new patterns!

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This is what I've been working on for the past couple of months. Several test crochets for a wonderful designer and some projects of my own. I cannot get over how much time as slipped away. We're already in the last month of 2010 and I have no clue where most of it went.

Lemony Lime Citrus Square 12 x 12
First, the test crochet projects for Smoothfoxlover aka Donna. This lady develops some of the prettiest crochet designs and I love love love testing them for her.

First up, I made the Lemony Lime Citrus Square 12 x 12, and you can find the details here in a previous post. The pattern is available free, just click on the name of the pattern above and it will take you to Smoothfox's blog.

Foxs Shape Shifter Blanket

The next project I tested was Foxs Shape Shifter blanket which is available for purchase. Simply follow the link by clicking on the pattern name. This was a great crochet project since I have 2 brand new nephews.

Foxs Mulberry Bush 12 x 12
Following the blanket, I tested this lovely square called Foxs Mulberry Bush 12 x 12 square. It's available free on her site, simply click on the pattern name and it will take you to her lovely site. Look around and explore all the gorgeous patterns listed on the right. Some are free, some are for purchase only, but definitely affordable.

Foxs Neapolitan Ice Cream 12 x 12

For my next test crochet came the Neapolitan Ice cream 12 x 12 square, again, it was a pleasure to crochet! It's available from Donna's etsy shop or her Ravelry shop, both links are on her blog, just follow the link by clicking on the pattern name.

Foxs Daisy Four Patch 12 x 12

The next test crochet was a lot of fun since I ended up making enough for a cushion. The square is called Foxs Daisy Four Patch 12 x 12. It is quite versatile as it has different sizes depending on where you stop crocheting the squares. You can make four  5 x 5 squares, assemble them, complete a few rounds around the 4 conjoined squares, and you get a very nice 12 x 12. Or you can keep crocheting until your squares are 6 x 6 or continue for a  7 x 7. So many ways to use these and you can get rid of a lot of odds and ends of yarn you would otherwise have sitting in your stash for eons. Each centre piece only takes a very small amount of yarn and you can vary the color of those to make the daisies. Great pattern and lots of fun to make. 

Foxs Nonagon Blanket
This was followed by Foxs Nonagon Blanket test crochet. Another pleasure to create and you can keep going past the last row of the pattern and create a super huge blanket. The pattern makes a very nice conveniently sized blanket to be used in strollers and car seats. Great for using up various colors as well. This pattern is available to purchase by clicking the pattern name. 

Foxs Diagonal Box Stitch square 6 x

Then it was Foxs Diagonal Box Stitch square. I had a lot of fun making this square. Once you learn the pattern, it's easy to do as a take along on the bus, car, waiting at Dr's offices, etc. The pattern is available free, just click on the link that will take you to her blog where you can download the pattern. Another great stashbuster for using up all those odds and ends of cotton and acrylic. So many things that can be made using this base pattern!

Foxs Spiral Blanket Nbr 2
Then it was the turn for a couple of blankets. The first one is Foxs Spiral blanket Nbr 2 Very simple pattern and once the spiral is established, one that can be made in a few evenings while watching a movie. I used 2 strands of baby yarn for the white and love how soft and cushy it feels. The pattern is available for purchase via Donna's site, simply click on the name of the pattern that will take you directly to her blog. The second blanket has not been released yet.
Foxs Pineapple Scarf

The next project to test was a lovely scarf named Foxs Pineapple Scarf. I used a blend of mohair and acrylic to make my version and it turned out beautiful. I had just enough yarn to make a quick hat to go with it. Lots of fun to make in a couple of evenings. This has become my go to scarf pattern for quick gifts with the versatility it has using different yarns. The pattern is available for purchase by simply following the above link by clicking on the pattern name.

And last but by no means least is Foxs Cutie Pie Flower 6 x 6 square. One of the cutest squares I've tested so far. Easy and fast to make. I can see this becoming part of a variety of items like a scarf, blanket, bag, vest. The pattern is available for purchase by clicking on the above link.
Foxs Cutie Pie Flower 6 x 6

There are a few more projects currently being tested and will post about these when they are released. I highly recommend Donna's patterns to anyone looking for quality and well designed crochet items as well as easy to follow patterns with no hoops to jump through. Take a look through her blog, you won't regret it. She is a prolific designer so there's always something new on her blog.

I have some of my own crochet projects that I completed while doing the test crocheting. I'll post about those another day since my head is killing me right now. But Enjoy the photos and go visit Donna's blog!