Thursday, August 23, 2012

Let's Talk Yarn

Confession, yarn makes me happy and a yarn shop makes me even more happy. I could spend hours walking around looking at the different colors, feeling the different textures and browsing the millions of patterns while picturing what B would look like in a crocheted cowl while on the motorcycle. By the way, he turned that one down about a year ago.

First I want to explain what I like to do. I crochet.... not knit and despite the opinions and ranting of some, THEY ARE NOT THE SAME. You either like to crochet or you like to knit. I've rarely found someone who likes to do both but there are many, like myself, who have learned to do both. 

I began crocheting at 10 when my mother taught me how to do the basic chain stitch. I would spend many nights sitting on the couch making 5 foot chains for my cat, Gizmo, to chase around the house. As the year went by, I had learned how to make my chains into small square pieces that were eventually used for pot holders. My small pot holders evolved into bigger pot holders and soon I had crocheted my first blanket for my niece, Amanda.

I got out of crocheting at the end of high school and through my early years of college. I attended UGA and marched in the Redcoat Band, met B and realized I wanted to be a nurse. After I transfered out and was accepted to nursing school, stress started to set in.  I was introduced to and was soon engulfed in crocheting again. And as to my surprise, I realized it was the perfect stress reliever for my studies.

To understand both, you first need to know the basic difference between the two which is the tools that are needed to do  a stitch.

These are knitting needles.

These are crochet hooks. 

Both sets come in different sizes, shapes, colors, contours, etc. Crochet uses one tool and knitting requires two. Needles come in number sizes while hooks come in letter sizes.

The possibilities of what you can make are endless. For example, these two colors of yarn, crocheted together....

Made this hat for B.

I don't have a lot of pictures of my projects. Sometimes when I'm finished, I'm so tired of looking at it that I don't want to take any pictures. But I will say that one my my favorite yarns I've used recently is this one...

This one is made from 100% alpaca yarn is is probably the softest thing I've ever felt.... besides baby's skin..... and Boo when she's fresh out of the shower. 

* Important note: DO NOT WASH 100% WOOL... unless you plan to felt your project* (felting will come way later in the blogging world)

I'm also in love with this yarn...

I'm almost certain it would make an amazing scarf this fall but I don't think my N hook is even big enough to handle this chunky monkey.

These are some of the pattern books in my collection. I usually go here to get my patterns but Wal-Mart also offers these $5 books. They're perfect for an intermediate crochet project and what is so great is that the book teaches you about 6 different stitches and then has you make different projects with them.

One of the best books is at the top left. That book has patterns to make dishcloths that are super cute and easy. The yarn used for that is 100% cotton and can be found at Wal-Mart and Hobby Lobby whereas some of the other yarns (like Chunky Money) can only be found at specialty yarn shops.

*Warning: Visiting specialty yarn shops will cause you to have strange urges to touch all of the yarn. You may also find that money mysteriously vanishes from your bank account after visiting such a store*

The last tool in my arsenal is my yarn rack.

My mom and I saw a man knitting with a rack similar to this one at a fall festival last year so we came home and made ourselves some. My rack can hold three different yarns but we've made some that only hold one or two. I love my rack because I don't have to waste time pulling the yarn out of the skein in between stitches. Instead I just keep crocheting and let the yarn roll itself out.

I want to just lay in the middle so I can feel them all at one time.

I got into crocheting because my mother taught me but anyone can do it. Many specialty shops will offer certain days where beginners can come in and be taught how to knit or crochet for free. I will warn you that most shops knit and will make fun of you if you say you crochet. But I don't care, I'm a rebel.... I guess..... or they're just snots. Crocheting and knitting both are very stress free crafts and are both something you can do while carrying on a conversation or watching t.v.

Either way, I hope this post has helped you decide if you'd like to try something new.

Happy hooking!!


Sunday, August 12, 2012

Early Morning List

As a night shift nurse you learn to give up a few things. The first being nights at home with your loved ones and being able to sleep until 10 am. I would kill to be able to sleep long hours. Instead, I was up at 5:30 this morning and now I'm stuck on the couch waiting for The Golden Girls to come on. While I sit here trying to be quiet, I've decided to make a list of things on my mind this morning.

1.) I'm ashamed to say I watched a new show this morning. Here Comes Honey Boo Boo. Though I'm not crazy about the little girl the show is supposed to be based around, I have fallen in love with her family.... and the fact that they live in Georgia.

2.) Football season starts soon and I'm itching to get back to A-Town to watch the Dawgs Tee it up between the hedges. For those of you non Dawg fans (and in my book, sinners) YouTube some Larry Munson favorites and see what it means to be a Dawg.

3.) Football season means fall. Bring on the pumpkin spice lattes and apple cider.

4.) Pinterest is addicting. If you don't have an account, make one and be prepared to throw away hours of valuable time.

5.) B had me out laying on the tennis courts last night watching the meteor shower. I was tired, until 5:30 rolled around.

6.) The upstairs neighbor is uber loud.... I'm searching for houses now.... in Florida..... at the beach.... way out of my price range.

7.) I'm thinking about #3 again and I've just remembered that I will not be able to attend any of my favorite fall festivals this year. Poop. What reason is there for living?

8.) I'm working on a post all about yarn. Dorky, I know, but some of us like to have personal crocheted blankets, hats, scarves, table runners, iPhone cozies, etc.

9.) Bonnie smells like B's body wash.

10.) The closing ceremony for the Olympics is tonight. Don't forget to tune in. Mr. Beckham was so sexy in the opening ceremony... I hope he returns tonight.

Sweet Dreams!


Saturday, August 4, 2012


Today is a nasty day in good ol' Ga which means that for a night shift nurse like me, it's great sleeping weather but for those of you who aren't keepers of the night, it means a good day to curl up with a good book..... unless you're watching The Olympics and in that case GO TEAM USA!!!! Here are just a few books I am reading right now and a few that I've already read but highly recommend to you too!

Fifty Shades of Grey.

Little Earthquakes

 House Rules

One for the Money (skip the movie)


 And for the men in your life, Unbroken. B read through this one in a matter of days.
 Happy rainy days, Y'all!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Photo Shoot With Boo

You'll often hear me call my dog by Boo. Her real name is Bonnie which evolved into Boonie, Booner, then we landed on Boo. She likes to lay across our bed and our bedroom gets the perfect amount of light and my D40 loves it!

She's usually not thrilled when I come at her with the camera.

Wakey wakey Boo! Mama needs some new pictures! You know, in case a rabbit catches your eye while we're out pottying and I need to post "Have you seen this dog?" pictures all over the apartment complex....... and in open fields........ and in the woods.

Work it, Boo! Hey, did you know your snout is turning grey? I think it makes you look wise. Even though you still like to chase a laser light across the floor.

I'm loving it. I think my camera is actually in love with her too.

That's a good one. I just need one more!

Ok, I'm good. I'll be back in a few months and we'll do it again. I'm supposed to get a new lens in October so I'll see you then!!!

Happy Thursday, everyone!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Kayla's Canvas

My best friend, Kayla, is getting her very first classroom this year! Yay! Couldn't be more excited for her on this one. Before I show you the finished product you need to know a few things about Kayla. She's hands down the greatest friend I've ever had. She likes Cupcake Vodka, Cupcake Wine, cupcakes and anything Dr. Seuss.

Finished product. 
Sorry for the horrible picture. The closest camera I had was my iPhone and I can't get it to rotate so just pick up your computer and turn it..... tee hee. The thought makes me laugh.

You'll need:
One canvas of any size
Acrylic paints (make sure white is included)
Printout of picture that you choose
Graphite paper

First I painted my entire canvas white. This is to keep the paints from settling into the canvas fabric and causing the picture to fade over time.
Next I measured out where I wanted my lines to go and then used the caps to spice bottles/salt shakers to make my circles.

I then found a picture on the internet of The Cat in the Hat that I liked and printed out Kayla's name.

It was then time to draw out the picture and letters. This is where the graphite paper comes to use. This stuff is tricky because if you don't place it on the correct side, the picture won't trace. Make sure the DARKEST side is facing the canvas. 

I did the same for under the letters also. Trace the picture and letters with any sort of sharp tool. I used specials tools from Hobby Lobby but you can also use pens and pencils.

The picture will be a little messy but you can paint over the smudges with white paint or color if you like. Now it's time to paint!!! Have fun with it! I didn't paint in a specific way. Just kind of went with it and painted where ever I wanted to.

This is the finished product again.

Kayla hung it outside her door so all the little kiddies will know where to go.... actually they won't because they're in pre-k and don't know how to read. 

Next time I'm making one for Bonnie.