31 December 2016

Orlo: The Created

By Lauren Brandenburg

This is the 4th book in the Books of the Gardener series. I was privileged to read the 1st three and have them in 2 formats, print and ebook. I was also privileged to be asked to read the book and help find errors before final printing. The books are wonderful stories for children, teens, and even adults. They help us to look at our own lives and see where we are help us to realize that God is in our lives and helps us with issues we are dealing with.

Orlo is an orphan in the Conclusus and has been allowed to live with a guardian (Poppy and Knox) and he has a job. He drives a cartagon (a cart wagon) and delivers things from one place to another every day. He is a fidgeter, he fidgets all day long and when he finds something, he picks it up and puts it in his pocket and takes it with him and he fiddles and plays with the things making mechanical things, while he waits. It helps him pass the time while waiting. In the Conclusus, people are given jobs and those are the jobs that they are to do and they cannot deviate from those jobs and they cannot request a change of job. They are to do the job and only that job. They are not to lie and they are not to think about anything else.

One day, he accidentally burns his hand on his cartagon and while waiting for medication at the healers place, he hears that it is time for the contest. The contest allows others from lower ranks to try something new and become an apprentice to the inventors. He wants to throw his hat into the ring, but Knox gets there first and there is only one from each household. He is disappointed and the Gardener's daughter/apprentice, knows. She keeps reminding him that he cannot continue to think the way he is thinking. So she sends him on an errand, where he ends up trapped. As he spends the night, he learns about the area and learns that they are not law breakers, but happier. He is then called back to the Conclusus. Things are in an uproar.

I do recommend reading this book to everyone. It is a such a good read. Find what you can get out of the book and see where it will lead you.

Native American Inspired Crafts/Knit/Crochet

  1. The Navajo Afghan 
  2. The Arrowhead Afghan 
  3. A Classic Native American Blanket  
  4. The Rain Dance Afghan
  5. Apache Tears Afghan 
  6. Navajo Square Lap Blanket
  1. The Sun Dance Afghan
  2. Wild West Sunset Lapghan
  3. Tribal Arrows Afghan
  4. Indian Stripe Afghan - 
  5. Native American-Inspired Granny Square
  1. Painted Desert Afghan
  2. Modern Native American Blanket Pattern - 
  3. Southwestern Granny Square
  4. Arizona Sunset Blanket
  5. Dreamcatcher Square - Dream Circle Square

I may have saved these patterns before in many places, but I love the colors and patterns created. 

30 December 2016

Storybook Charm

  1. Little House on the Prairie - Prairie Star Afghan
  2. A Midsummer Night's Dream - Spring into Summer
  3. David Copperfield - Coffee, Claret, Copper Throw
  4. Moby-Dick - Nautical Ocean Breeze Throw
  1. Alice In Wonderland - Winter Wonderfland Afghan and Pillow
  2. Little Women - Feminine Lace Eyelet Afghan
  3. The Portrait of a Lady - Lady Square
  4. Huckleberry Finn - Country Charm Blanket
  5. Charlotte's Web - The Web We Weave
  6. The Wind in the Willows - Pastel Wind Chime
  7. The Lord of the Rings - Modern Wedding Ring Throw
  8. The Chronicles of Narnia - Little Lion Lovey 
  1. Around the World in 80 Days - Around the World Tunisian Throw
  2. The Secret Garden - English Garden Square
  3. The Jungle Book - Striped Afghan
  4. Oliver Twist - Baby Twister Afghan

29 December 2016

361 Days to Christmas

Funny count down, right? A friend was commenting on how Christmas is over and now Valentine's Day items are already out and a friend of hers commented that he was seeing Christmas decorations on houses and it was 363 days to Christmas! Right now we are still allowed to celebrate Christmas. Christmas ends on Epiphany, when the Wise Men came to the stable and see the tiny baby. I know I said that I feel better now that Christmas is over, but I was referring to the day that everyone goes out and buys tons of stuff for people to hate and return and put stress on people to go out and buy. Christmas shouldn't be about buying things, it should be about the birth of a child who saves us all. It should be about family and gathering and spending time together, not about stuff. I think that more than anything is why I hate Christmas.

I am finally making myself a blanket. I keep saying that it is mine and I will only share with my husband. I keep reminding myself that I am allowed to have this and it is to be mine. In the meantime, I am also making things for my daughters, husband, sil and nephew. My husband is funny, he says, if they don't like it, I will take it back. It will be mine. He is very covetous of things that I make. I love that man. He is wonderful and a gift and I am lucky to have him and that my girls get him for their dad.

Cat Lady Afghan
Prairie Star Afghan
Spiral Lapghan
Mini Octagon Granny
Pink Plaid Picnic Throw
Spring Lace Squares Throw
Kaleidoscopic Throw
A Little Bit of Everything Afghan - lots of different squares.

Teddy Bear
Star Wars Light Saber
Pac Man and Ghosts

Rainbow Dragon Bag
Summer Clutch

Tunisian Stocking
Folkways Christmas Stocking

Nautilina Scarf
Aurora Borealis Scarf
Turquoise V Cowl
Casual Cowl
Ribbed Unisex Cowl
Twisted Tracks Scarf
Alice Cullen Scarf

Ombre Knit Mittens
Easy Fingerless Gloves

Spin Cycle Hat
Braided Beanie
Anna Hat
Mini Brim Hat - My middle would love this hat. I may have to make it for her when she isn't paying attention.
Lazy River Beanie

Two Piece Swim Suit Dish Cloth
Radiant Rose Mandala Doily
Fall Dishcloths

Kiwi Puzzle
Olive the Octopus Puzzle
Amish Puzzle Ball
Pumpkin Segment Ball
Flower Puzzle Ball

October Shawl
Top Down Shawl
Mariposa Lace Shawl
Texture Stitch Wrap
Country Cottage Shawl

Wintermint Sock Trio

28 December 2016

Christmas Week

This is the week after Christmas and I feel lighter. I feel better about the world and life in general. This is the thing, I dislike Christmas and I just want to have people over, have a meal and enjoy the people. I don't need gifts and my children are the same. They love to have company over. They help me clean the house, they help prepare the food and they help make snacks, cookies, etc. After Christmas, we might venture out and do some shopping and we take our time and park far from the doors. It is just easier to be far from the doors. We go to the libraries and get books and games, etc, and we go to the zoo. This year we made a cake for my dearest friend and sister for her birthday. Her favorite type of cake and delivered it to her so she could share with mom, brother and niece. We had fun on the trip down to her house and we enjoyed the ride back home.

I saw a meme recently that said, "If someone makes you something they must really like you. If it is made in black they must really love you." I guess the same could be said, "If they make you something and drive through rush hour traffic to deliver it, they must love you."

We are back at the baking again, I am letting the girls try their hands at it and they are learning and getting better every day. When we are finished, we will package them up and take them somewhere to share. I took the girls to the store to pick up a few items and then we went and browsed through the Christmas reductions. Hershey Kisses were $2.14 a bag and that is a really good price and there is a cookie recipe that the girls want to try and it requires Hershey Kisses, so we bought some. I love that they are wanting to experiment and try new things. I love that they are learning over the holiday. They choose what, but they are learning. It makes life fun. I know that my husband and I are talking about going to a zoo for a few hours, before the holidays are over, but when and which, I cannot say.

With Christmas over, it is time to think of next Christmas. Next Christmas, you say. Of course, next Christmas. If you knit or crochet or cross stitch, these things take time and if you are making things for people who truly appreciate what you are making, you need to have time to work on them. You need to start as soon as the New Year starts. You need to plan things out and where you are going to put the items you have made until it is time to gift them. Also, if you are going to decorate and you want to make some of the ornaments, you need to start on those at this time, too. You need to decide what gets made first, whether it is something you can carry with you or if you can only work on it at home. When do you need it and who is going to get the item and do you want them to see what you are working on or do you want it to be a surprise. All these things go into the planning for next Christmas. It is officially 362 days until the next Christmas. My kids have also expressed an interest in having some decorations for Halloween, too. They asked about having things to put out for Thanksgiving and Easter. They want to have fun at the holidays and decorate the house and let people know that there aren't Scrooges living in the house (even if I do Bah Humbug at Christmas). So planning starts now.

Maisie Flower/Tutorial
Nautical Themed Afghan
Modern Day Hippie Daisy Throw
Oh My Hexagons
Octagon with Space Filler
Chinese Puzzle Square/Tutorial
Chevron Granny
Tropical Pineapple Squares
No Beginning Chain Crazy Block Afghan
Nesting Basketweave Baby Blanket
Green Meadows Throw
Magical Mist Throw
Kaleidosquares Afghan
Old Maid's Puzzle Afghan

Fair Isle Market Bag
Knitted Purse
Knitted Clutch

Santa Ornament
Links for Snowflakes
Gingerbread Family Ornaments
Owl Candy Cane - My favorite! I will need to make a few of these.
Pipsqueak Penguin Ornament
Roses in the Snow
Granny Square Stocking
Classic Christmas Stocking

Chain Stitch Scarf - knit lengthwise....very pretty.
Pivoting Cowl
Nectarine and Periwinkle Cowl
Links for Scarves
Red Scarf Project - Take the Trolley
Nellie Lace Scarf
Purple Knit Super Scarf
Textured Stripe Super Scarf
Lightning Fast Lattice Cowl
District 12 Cowl Wrap
Box Stitch Cowl
Equinox Cowl

Retro Crochet Mittens
Glove Holding Mitten - this is for mom's to hold child's hand.

Knitted Beret
Knit Night Hat
Crocodile Stitch Capuche Hood - I think one of my girls would like this hat.
Classic Variegated Hat
Wide Brim Skull Cap
Parker Hat
Stadium Hat
Inaugural Hat
Steinway Hat
Celtic Dream Earflap Hat
Winter Cable Hat
Vine Lace Hat
Beanie for Girls
Baby Snowflake Hat
Caps for a Cause

Old Fashioned Pot Holder
Poodle Tissue Box Cover - fun.

Simple Shrug 
Misty Memories Lace Shawl
Leher Shawl
Asymmetrical Collar Cape
Blue Jeans and Moonbeams Shawl - one of my daughters would loved this shawl/scarf
Moebius Wrap

Slippers/Socks/Boot Cuffs:
Yoga Socks
Mommy and Me Slippers - I am thinking slippers would be fun and quick to make and would be good for these cold days of January and February.
Links for Slippers
Boot Cuffs

27 December 2016

Knits and Crochets for Men

I only have a few men in my life and only one that I make things for regularly. So when I get links for things to make my man, I really need to save them and make a few for him.

He's the Man Scarf
Dude Scarf
Beanie for Men
Easy Men's Hat
Simple Sweater
Thick and Quick Hat for Him - Size P hook (yeah, I don't have one, yet).
Booklet to Download - 10 Patterns for Men
Easy Striped Scarf
Slippers for Him
Men's Brimmed Hat
Tunisian Striped Tie
Men's Ski Cap

26 December 2016

Christmas is over and New Year on the Way

With Christmas over, people are not as mean as they were before Christmas. Stress has left and I have new shoes. That might seem small to some, but due to arthritis in my feet and ankles and nerve damage in one foot, I am particular about shoes. I have to try them on and they have to not hurt my feet. It takes me some time to find shoes that I like. I also have a tendency to use money given to me for birthdays and holidays for my children. Buying them things they need or giving it to my husband for things he needs or even buying things for the house (general good). This time I bought me something first. I really needed shoes, so I bought them and then I got things for my kids.

I also keep looking at the patterns in my email and marking them for people who should get something and for my girls. I noticed that there are some people who are looking at the patterns I am saving in the google + and they seem to think (even though it says in the collections, these are links) I made the items that are being seen. Oh, well. What I am I to do, but continue to point out to them that these are links. Also, I need to point out that I will not make things for sale. I make things for presents and for people I like and are deserving.

There are a lot of shawl patterns available for free and they are fun to make and they are a great gift for a person who is ill and needs something to just keep them warm in the cooler months or cooler locations.

Chevron Blanket
Country Quilt
Mountain Mists
Lacy Square Throw
10 Stitch Crochet Blanket
Understated Cable Stitch Crochet Blanket
Rainbow Bright Stripe
Pinwheel Crochet Bedspread
Southwest Rainbow Throw
Treasure Island Blanket
Tunisian Entrelac Throw

Nellie Lace Scarf
Zoz Cowl
Paintbox Scarf
Frisco Basket Whip Cowl
Frost Flowers Lace Cowl
Dragonfly Cowl - my oldest would like this for the colors and name.
Cowl of Many Colors
Little Triangles Cowl
Mirage Cowl
Bridger Cowl
Bittersweet Cowl
Rose Garden Lace Scarf
Bamboo Stitch Cowl
Brioche Ribbed Scarf

Links for Fingerless Gloves - many are really nice.
Frozen Mittens
Links for Mittens

Amish Inspired Hat
Yarnster Hat
Montera Slouchy Hat
Polka Dot Hat and Mittens
Easy Lacy Headband
Chunky Slouch Hat
Every Day Knit Hat

Beginner Shawl
Wrap and Go Shawl
October Shawl
Shawl of Your Dreams
Scarlett Shawl
Keiko Wrap
Abstract Shawl
Kristen Shawl
Mini Mochi Garden Shawl - My friend, Mickie, is a master gardener and she would look great in this shawl.
Black Shawl
Perfectly Elegant Shawl
Multiplicity Buttoned Shawl
Show Off Boomerang - very neat pattern.

Crochet Slippers w/Tutorial
Converse Tennies for Baby
Knitted Slippers

25 December 2016


We delivered our Christmas Cookies to 2 libraries. We need to make more since we gave out quite a bit. We also set them out on the night we had family over, so it was good, because they were eaten. My girls have been good about not scavenging through the cookies when they were to get hungry. We went down to my dad's house for a bit on Christmas Eve and we need to go down to Ky again to celebrate with my husband's family. I had to go shopping on Friday and it was a nightmare some places and not so bad others. Walmart didn't have any carts, so I had to hold my choices (pjs for the girls), at the pet store, I was told to stand aside so that they could assist other people. Rude! I was standing in line first and if I hadn't needed the item (a new halter for my dog) I would have just walked out! Parking was a nightmare at the Kroger store and shelves were empty in places. I looked at few of the emails that I had been getting and saw some things that my girls had been asking for and that I thought would be good for other friends, too.

Trifonus Baby Blanket CAL - sign up now and pattern release starts on Jan 9th. After the last day is released the pattern will be sold.

Boot Cuffs:
Bow Boot Cuffs

50 Minute Easy Cowl
Julia Cowl
Super Faerie Scarf
Lacy Ripple Scarf
Pretty in Pink
504 King West

Simple Mittens

Stacked Shells Headband - my youngest might love this.
Comfy Cozy Headband
Whimsical Warmth Headband
Farmer's Market Hat
Babbling Brook Beanie

Galaxy Shawl
Sapphire Satin Sparkle Shawl
Pink and Purple Scarf
Paris Shawl
Crocheted Scarf
Delightfully Southern Shawl
Solaris Shawl - free for a short time after that paid.
Evelyn's Shawl
Rainbow Afternoon Shawl
Spanish Baroque Shawl

23 December 2016

Tiny Christmas Buddies

Christmas is almost here and the links for patterns for Christmas are always fun...please use this to start you list, earlier rather than later. 

Tiny Christmas Buddies - this links to more Christmas patterns. Some ornaments and other things. 
  1. Huggable Little Christmas Tree 
  2. Santa's Favorite Helper Adorable!
  3. Friendly Reindeer Amigurumi 
  4. Adorable Holiday Bird 

22 December 2016

Catching Up on the New Books

I love to read, I have said this before and I stated that I choose a book based on the cover alone. Whether it be a picture on the cover that makes me laugh or a title, I won't even read to see if I would enjoy it, I will just pick it up and give it a read. As a result, I have some new favorite authors.

On tap for reading (family reading night), "Orlo: The Created" by Lauren Brandenburg. My girls and I have family reading nights and sometimes we use Kindles to all read the same book. In this case, we all have copies of this book and will have a family reading night for Christmas.

I borrowed a book called, "Chocolate Snowman Murder" by JoAnna Carl. I really enjoyed the story and I ended up borrowing all of the books in this grouping. I just discovered that there was another that just came out, called "Chocolate Bunny Bruhaha," Lee and her aunt hired Bunny, a client of her husband's Poverty Law group and have given her 3 months to become a proficient worker, but that hasn't happened. Just as Lee was going to let her go, she discovers Bunny true abilities and gives her that job. Just as she begins, her soon to be ex-husband's aunt comes in and tells Bunny that she is not to leave her husband. She is also told that she will be left all her aunt's money. The next day, the aunt is found dead in the construction area of TenHuis Chocolade. This is just the start of bad things and Lee does her best to find out the truth without getting in her uncle's way (the chief of police). As she learns things, she does notify him.

I also discovered that there was a new Christmas Cozy book out by Joanne Fluke called, "Christmas Caramel Murder." It was different. Hannah is now married and she and her husband are having their first Christmas and he asks her to make a special candy. She says she is not certain if she will or not since the candy seemed to bring problems for the town. She tells him the story of how her partner made the candy and gave it to her husband. Also, there was a trouble maker in town. She used to be Hannah's partner, Lisa's, husband (Herb) girlfriend when they were in school. She came back to town as the paramour of the already married mayor. When he dumps her, he saddles her to Herb, right down to making her Mrs. Claus for the annual show. When the woman is found by Hannah and Lisa, dead, they begin to look into the mystery because Lisa and Herb are connected to the murder.

Last year, I found a book whose title made me laugh (I borrowed it from the library), "Crouching Buzzard, Leaping Loon," by Donna Andrews. Another favorite author. I loved the story and found all the books and read them. Then I found out she had a new one called, "Die Like an Eagle." Her twin sons are on a baseball team, called the Eagles and they are playing at the local field and it is in poor repair. The person responsible for the baseball league and the fields has a reputation and the dads associated with her sons' team aren't very helpful, but as she learns more about the man in charge of the league, she too, isn't fond of the man. The opening day, she finds the man's brother dead in a porta potty and begins to look into what really happened, but she is actually just trying to get her ducks (the series is bird related) in a row and get the man (a contractor with a city contract) out of the way (legally) so the work on the town square can be finished in time for the holiday.

I am also reading books by Margaret Truman, Tony Hillerman (some are rereads) and Jessica Beck. I have already read over 170 books for the year and still have about a week to go. What are you reading? What author has caught your attention and caused you to read all they have written?

21 December 2016

State Inspired Patterns

  1. CALIFORNIA: Coastal Blue Cardigan
  2. NEW YORK: New York Scarf
  3. MICHIGAN: Michigan Baby Blanket
  4. PENNSYLVANIA: Goddess Scarf
  5. MASSACHUSETTS: Boston Cowl -NEW
  6. TEXAS: In Bloom Bonnet
  7. FLORIDA: Orange Cabled Mittens
  8. ILLINOIS: Windy City Cardigan
  9. WASHINGTON: Olympia Super Scarf -NEW
  10. OHIO: Oh Deer Baby Blanket
  11. WISCONSIN: Madison Shawl -Printable!
  12. NORTH CAROLINA: Squirreled Away Blanket
  1. NEW JERSEY: Shoreline Lace Shawl
  2. MINNESOTA: Oaklet Shawl
  3. VIRGINIA: Butterfly Beanie -Reader Favorite!
  4. GEORGIA: Peachy Shoulder Shawl
  5. OREGON: Seed Stitch Pear Dishcloth
  6. COLORADO: Colorado River Throw
  7. CONNECTICUT: North Shore Hat
  8. INDIANA: Tulip Yoke Baby Cardigan
  9. ARIZONA: Phoenix Print Scarf -Popular!
  10. MISSOURI: Bluebird Scarf
  11. TENNESSEE: Southern Belle Top

20 December 2016

Patterns and Christmas

We are 5 days away from Christmas. I still have things to make and finish. I feel like that is a perpetual with me. Last night I was trying to work on a blanket and my cat decided to sit on it and not move. I still have so many patterns in my email that I need to sort through. I am starting to see lots of repeats. I am also starting to put them in google + to share with people who only look there.

Rhythm in Cables
Mermaid Lap Blanket
Sea Creatures Throw
Northern Motifs Throw - colorwork.
Blue and White Afghan
Deco Columns Throw
Dream Catcher Baby Blanket
Setting Sun Patchwork Afghan
Cosmic Dorm Throw
Cozy Man-ghan
Evergreen Throw
Zippy Zag Zag Lapghan
Scrap Happy Quilters Afghan
Kaleidoscope Afghan
Arizona Sunset Afghan
French Country Throw
Blue Squares Afghan
Blue Lagoon Throw
Rich Mitered Throw

Ice Cream Cone

Cat Nip Bunnies - I need to keep this for my sister in law and me and others with kitties.

Candy Cane Treat Bag
1 Skein Farmer's Market Bag
Waves Tote Bag
On the Go Knit Bag

Boot Cuffs:
Boot Cuffs - Easy

Pretty Pilgrim Scarf
Fisherman Scarf and Cowl
Cozy Plaid Super Scarf
Linen Stitch Colorblock Scarf
Summer Dream Scarf
Lacy Wine Infinity Scarf

Bellas Mittens
Wicker Knitting Set
Polka Dot Hat and Mittens
Corgi Mittens
Links for Mittens
Women's Norwegian Mittens
Warm Winter Mitts
Dog Fir Mittens
Four Needle Mittens
Seed Stitch Mittens

North Shore Hat
Frog Hat
Basic Ribbed Hat
Cascading Leaves Hat
Wine Harvest Headband
Embossed Leaves Hat
Celtic Dream Ear Flap Hat
Easy Slouch Hat
Fallen Leaves Slouch Hat
Madly in Love Hat
Burgundy Breeze Cable Hat

Lighthouse Dishcloth
August Dishcloth
Chocolate Chip Cookie Hot Pad
Ripple Pot Holder
Sprinkle Pot Holders
Not Your Mom's Hotpad
Dutch Skies Pot Holder
Perfect Pot Holder
Old Fashioned Pot Holder
Pot Handle Cover
Best Crochet Potholder
Let's Get Cooking
Four Square Pot Holder
Coffee Cup Hot Pad

Evening Breath
Midnight Magic Shawl
Top Down Shawl
Ella's Rhythm Shawl
Silver Glam Shawl
Sweet Vintage Shawl
Texture Stitch Wrap
Country Cottage Shawl

Grandma's Slippers
Pansy Path Knit Sock
Best Sock Pattern Ever