30 June 2013

Sunday Snaps

Thanks for all the well wishes!  I am feeling a lot better today and I even got my voice back yesterday!

My plan is to finish this today.  I have a border idea that I hope plays out as well in reality as it does in my head.

Tinkerbell has been my constant nursemaid the entire time I've been sick.  She's such a sweet girl.

28 June 2013

Weekend Wonderment

I have a nasty case of strep throat... so I've been taking these antibiotics and attempting to still work.
I'm hoping these smurfy capsules knock out this less than smurfy case of strep throat that I have.  I was supposed to stay home but since I work from home, I got a note to stay quiet until tomorrow.  Resting is resting, right?  I hope to get my star wrap finished this weekend but so far, it's looking like smurfiness and practice will be on the agenda as well.

26 June 2013

Wednesday Wound-Up

I've really only been working on two projects because I don't want to work on the other ones that I have available... I know, that's rotten, isn't it.  Welp, here's what I've got going on -

When other people are role playing, I keep myself engaged by working on this half star wrap...

When long presentations are happening that require me to focus, I work on this lace crown slouch hat.
I have a few other projects that I could work on but these are the two that keep me the most sane for the moment so they are the ones that are living on my desk - evident in the photos too... oh well.  I'm sure things will even out soon enough and I'll be begging for more time to craft but for now, I'll enjoy the found free time for my hands to be busy with hooks and needles while my ears and brain are otherwise engaged.  On the upside, I do have this finished project to share...

It's a thank you for Hobbit for being such a good girl while staying with her grandparents during my training.

25 June 2013

Tuesday Tunes

This was our first anniversary that went off without a bit of drama. For those who don't know - we usually celebrate our first day of marriage, not our wedding anniversary because of all the horrible things that have happened on that day.

Our first anniversary, we had to rush to Texas because my daddy had a heart attack and required emergency triple bypass surgery.

Our second anniversary, we had a huge fit over something stupid.

Our third anniversary, my husband came clean about having fibbed about quitting smoking the year prior - mainly because I came home to him smoking.

Can you see the pattern that came about in the first few years? Welp, this past Thursday was our 5th anniversary and I have to say - nothing went wrong! No illness, no drama... it was wonderful!! So to celebrate a fresh start to fabulous anniversaries, I'm sharing our song with y'all. Here's to all the rest of our anniversaries being as beautiful as this one.

24 June 2013

Motivational Monday

These past few months have take a lot of courage from my husband. I'm very proud of him for all that has done or tried to do.

23 June 2013

Sunday Snaps

I said goodbye to my first lace shawl & my Hobbit as they both went home with my folks on Sunday...

I keep trying to read J.K Rowling's new books but end up working on this bedspread instead...

I put this project on my desk so I could sneak in a few rows during the hours of training presentations...

My office started out very neat and tidy, one project hanging on the chair & space for Hobbit to do homework...

Pokey is now in the living room in a temporary set up but he seems to be alright with it so far...

We had our first ever anniversary where something DID NOT go horribly wrong and ruin the day!

My office by the end of my first week of training - how many crafting projects can you spot...

I'm making Hobbit a shawl to give her when she gets home to thank her for being wonderful during my training...

My weekend has been totally relaxed (with a few loads of laundry thrown in for good measure).

22 June 2013

Weekend Wonderment

Survived my first week back in the working world... I deserve a celebratory break so that's just what I'm doing.

20 June 2013

Elephant Shoes

Today is my wedding anniversary.  Isn't my present sweet!
All day yesterday, while I was at work, Pokey was working too.  He was making me this... I tried not to peek and he tried to keep it mostly secret when I would come out on my breaks.  I woke up this morning and came in here to practice a few things I learned during training yesterday when I found this in front of my laptop on my desk.

When we were first dating, I was a little gun shy, as it were.  He was too good to be true so I was blown away and slightly scared.  When he first told me he loved me, I mouthed "elephant shoes" to him and it became our little joke.

I will treasure this forever because it's perfect... just like my sweet husband is perfect for me.

19 June 2013

Wednesday Wound-Up

I really haven't started anything new but I want to... you know?  I have an itching to make another shawl, for myself this time, and I know what yarn I want to use but I don't have the right pattern for it and when I find a pattern I like, I don't have enough yarn.

Yesterday I sat down and wrote down all of my measurements.  That was an experience.  I may have a nice little image in my head of how I see myself but it always gets shattered whenever I write down actual numbers.  Oh well, since I know that I don't want to spend my days sweating in a gym and totally enjoyed my Black & White brownie last night, this is my body.  My husband still whistles when I get something out of the oven with my hiney in the air and that is all that matters to me.

So lend a girl a hand - help me find a great shawl pattern.  I am on a crochet kick lately so I would prefer that and I have 480 yards of Wexford Merino Silk, which is listed as a 10 ply/worsted weight though it doesn't feel like it at all.  I don't care for the shawls that look like netting or mesh but I absolutely love the classic, elegant look.  A shawl, or a shrug that goes up to a 47" bust, would be perfect.  Yeah, I know I just shared a measurement with y'all but hey, it's just a number, right?  I am totally skint so free downloadable works best for me right now or if someone has one that needs testing, I'm game.

That's my project week at a glance... oh, and I've been plugging away on this again -

When things get slow during training at my new job this week, I have been sneaking in a few stitches.
Then again, if I get bored with the super huge future granny square queen size bedspread, I can flip to one of the other projects I have housed in my office as well...

Two projects at arms reach - the lazyboy is in my office too though so that's really three.

18 June 2013

Tuesday Tunes

Today called for a classic and what could fit the bill better than some good ol' Reba?

17 June 2013

Motivational Monday

Monday Inspiration Board 15

There really isn't much more I can add to this - all we can do is the best we can with what we have been given.  I know that Pokey and I are doing all we can with what we've been given and even though it feels at times like we aren't getting very far, we have faith that things are always working towards a better tomorrow.

Sometimes, it's that little bit of faith that makes the biggest difference.

16 June 2013

Sunday Snaps

I'm working on a new slouch hat design that combines my love of crochet and knitting.

I worked all week to make my mama's birthday presents and she will get them today when she gets here.

Buddy & Tinkerbell have been acting rather weird lately so I documented the weirdness because they crack me up.

Tuuuuuuurtle... and unless you've seen "The Master of Disguise", you think we're nuts.  Hobbit loves her new glasses.

I have gone two weeks without coffee so I splurged on Friday... but in reality, I just wanted my own coffee with my creamer.

You know how sometimes stuff just tastes really super good - yeah, that was my chips from lunch the other day.

Hobbit cleaned out her "baby" books and we donated them to the local library.
I am chuffed beyond belief at how this came out and I think my mama really liked it too - at least I hope so!

That's been my week - a complete whirlwind on so many levels.  Things are still spinning and churning around but I don't have the emotional strength to get into them right now.  Perhaps when it's all settled down a bit I will share but for now, it's all too stressful to open up that Pandora's box.  I'll just leave it with the hope and prayer that everyone has parents that are as fabulous as mine have been to us.  Without them, we would be living an entirely different life by now.

They are and have always been my lighthouse and I love them - I'm not eloquent enough to say it any better than that.

15 June 2013


Oh mylanta, I got so wrapped up in finishing things before my new job starts on Monday that I completely fell off the earth, didn't I... so sorry!  Oh let's see what can I do to make things up for not being here the past two days... how about a fudge recipe?

I'm going to make some this morning after I get my shower so why not share the recipe with y'all.  It's the best fudge ever so I know you will love it too.  It's simple and the results are to die for, I promise.
A batch from last Christmas that the kids decorated.

  1. 1 1/2 cups of your favorite version of chocolate chips
  2. 1 2/3 cups of castor sugar
  3. 2/3 cup of evaporated milk
  4. 2 cups of your favorite mini marshmallows
  5. 2 tbsp of butter
  6. 1/2 tsp of salt
  7. 1 tsp of vanilla
  8. Your topping of choice - sprinkles, dots, walnuts
  1. Line a square baking dish with paper.  Some people like wax, some like foil.  It doesn't matter really - I use baker's paper.
  2. Mix together sugar, evaporated milk, butter and salt in medium saucepan; bring to rolling boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Let it boil for about 5 minutes or until mixture starts to thicken up. Now, remove it from the heat.
  3. Toss in your marshmallows, chocolate chips, and vanilla.  Stir it up until all the marshmallows and chocolate are melted and blended together nicely.
  4. Pour your delicious creation into your lined baking dish.  Set it in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, it's even better if you can leave it over night. 
  5. All that's left is to cut it into squares and enjoy.  Be sure that you keep it in the refrigerator, in a sealed container. 
While that is setting, take a look at what I finished this morning...

I'm hoping it will be dry by tonight so that I can give it to my mama in the morning as part of her birthday presents.

12 June 2013

Wednesday Wound-Up

You didn't think I'd spoil her surprise, did you?
I have been very busy this past week.  I managed to make everything I wanted for my mama's birthday - which is tomorrow but I won't see her until Sunday.  I sure hope that if she does come snooping around in here, she won't be able to figure it out from the photo.  I did make sure to add it to the Present Protection Program - not even Hobbit knows so she can't flub up and let it slip.

There has been no progress on my gingerbread house but I have made some (completely unnoticeable) progress on my Mission shawl.  I've only got two rows left to do but the last row took me an hour to make so they'll only get longer from here.  Here's a photo from this morning...

I measured it and I'm at 15.5" with two rows left to go.  I was worried about the stitch pattern but it's showing up.
So that's been my week.  I promise to share my mama's presents on Sunday's post because she'll have received them, though my post might be a bit later than usual. I hope your projects are going well - what are you working on?

11 June 2013

Tuesday Tunes

You know those days when you wake up and you know that you've gotten off your path and you need to get back on it?  Those days when you are tired of worrying and feeling anxious, crying out for a change?  Yeah, that was my morning.  I was first presented with a FB status update that read "Quit being worried, stressed out, wondering if it will happen. God has you in the palm of His hand. He has never once failed before, and the good news is, He is not about to start now."  Wow, get out of my head - how timely was that message?  Then I came across and reread this which reminded me of a song and so I pulled it up and listened to this...

It all brought me back to the Fall of 2002 when I went to listen to Franklin Graham speak and Michael W. Smith sing in Gainesville. I may identify with Society of Friends but I have a strong Southern Baptist base and in 2002, that was the day that I rededicated myself to God. I went with my dear friend, Debbie. I'm glad she was there with me - we have lived similar lives and we will always be connected through our shared experiences. We understand the path that each other has walked... but I digress.  The message that Franklin gave was very similar to the post I linked above and it always pops back into my life when I need it most.

I was unknowingly searching for it instead of waiting for it to find me.  I hadn't forgotten to ask for help - I had forgotten to stop taking it back.  I, being my stubborn self, only did the easy half by asking... it's time to the harder half, trusting and letting go.  So this morning, I have asked again but this morning, I'm also letting go.

Thank you, for guiding me to where I need to be... again.

10 June 2013

Motivational Monday

Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.  ~Abraham Lincoln
I'm going to share something here today that few know.  It won't be some deep revelation or some dirty little secret.  It's just a little nugget of truth about the life I've been blessed with... are you ready?  Things aren't perfect.

Yep, I've said it out loud.  I get a lot of notes asking me how to have some stress-free, fabulous life which people mistakenly believe that I lead.  I don't know where this misconception comes from because I share it all - the good, the bad and the ugly - but it happens several times a week.

My life is far from perfect.  My husband's position at his work has been absorbed into another location that is almost 2 hours away so he either has to drive that distance or move into a position he does not care for... plus, his paychecks have been half of what they used to be for the past two months.  Hobbit is a very strong willed child who knows where all of my buttons are located and likes to play hopscotch on them at least once a day.  Peanut would rather spend the summer at her grandparents house instead of coming home from university.  We have exactly $1.72 in our bank account to last us until Friday and the budget did not allow for me to have creamer this pay period so I've not had any coffee for two weeks.  My life is far from perfect - but that doesn't mean I can't choose to be happy.

When I was a high school senior, I had a fabulous Government and Economics teacher named Mrs. Moore.  She was smart, snarky and had no problem 'getting down on our level'.  I will always remember her telling people that would come into class, upset over the usual teenage drama, that they had two choices - they could be upset over things they can't fix or they could simply choose to be happy.  I simply choose to be happy.

Now don't get me wrong - I do indulge myself in the occasional good cry but I also know that all it will do is get my face wet and give me a headache.  So once that good cry is done, I pick myself up and figure out what I can do to make it better.  If it is something outside of my control, I simply decide to make the best of it because if I can't control it at least I can control my reaction to it.

So there you go - my life is a mess, things are chaotic and I have a special roped off section in the back of my mind that is in a constant state of worry over finances and family.  The difference is, that roped off section is in the back of my mind, not the front, so that I can do my best to find the happiness in the day.  I'm 40 years old.  I've got grey hairs and a fluffy physique.  My number of days on this earth are finite and I would rather spend the precious time that I have been given being happy about things instead of wandering around miserable.

Thanks, Mrs. Moore - 24 years later and your reminder to "choose your mood" is still echoing through my head and leading me through the day.

09 June 2013

Sunday Snaps

I started out the week ripping back my shawl and trying to get back where I was...

Lots of Tinkerbell love this week.  She's gotten to be so big and finding her groove in our family.

I wrote up an fabulous recipe for a tuna casserole with some zip and zing to it - it's wonderful!

I made myself a new hotpad on the last day of school, enjoying the final quite hours for the next 12 weeks.

I got back to were I was before I had to frog a large section of earlier in the week... but this time it's right!

First named storm of the season came through - nothing major but we did get some much needed rain.

I am honestly keeping up with the FMS photo a day challenge this month, which makes me very happy.

Hobbit turned in her first homework assignment over at the HPKCHC - Divination.  She made it all by herself too.

I kept keeping up my end of things by cheering on Hufflepuff for Quidditch, with some Slyther-love thrown in.

Yesterday, I had an idea for a hat and so instead of just figuring I'll do it later, I sat down and got to work on it...

I really love how the crochet lace plays off the knitted base.  It's going to be wonderful, at least I hope so.

07 June 2013

Weekend Wonderment ~ 6/7 - 6/9

This is all I can share because I'm actually going to be spending all weekend working on my mama's birthday presents!
I've got my own little personal one woman sweatshop going on here this weekend.  I've managed to complete two of the presents that I want to make my mama for her birthday but I've got three more waiting in the wings.  I can't wait to show you but the best I can do for now, so as to not ruin her surprise in case she's poking her head in here, is to show you the pretty yarn.  I promise to share the finished goods with y'all once she gets them.

I've also got something else happening right now - a new pattern in the testing phase!  I believe my math is sound so this testing section of the process should just whip right along.  I am really jazzed about it but I'll warn you, it's a pattern for a niche market really but that market will hopefully adore it.

Back to the mines with me.  Have an awesome weekend!

06 June 2013

Nibbles and Narratives

Summer is officially here at our house.  We're on our second day of summer break from school and Hobbit has been enjoying the freedoms that it brings.  I figured I'd give her the rest of the week off from structured events and we'll just start our routine on Sunday.  During these unstructured days, I've managed to sneak in a bit of reading which has been wonderful.  I must say though - my mind is starting to wander in this section of the story so I'm hoping things will get engaging again soon but I'm almost done so either way, I'm thinking a new book will be on the horizon.
Lazy Pasta... I think that's what I'll call it.

Speaking of lazy summertime fun - I've got the perfect supper.  All you need to sacrifice is ten minutes of your time to toss it all together while the oven heats up, then you can go back to relaxing for the 40 minutes it takes to bake.  Sounds good, doesn't it?

  1. 1 16oz box of Ritoni
  2. 1 24oz jar of your favorite tomato sauce
  3. 24 oz of warm water
  4. 2 cups of your favorite cheese or several slices of singles
  1. Set your oven to 425*F and lightly spray your 9x13 dish with cooking spray.  It helps with clean up after supper but you can skip this step if you want to, it isn't necessary.
  2. Mix together your dry pasta, sauce and jar of warm water.  I shake the water in the jar to make sure and not leave any of the goodness inside.  Make sure your pasta is good and wet, then pour it in to your baking dish.
  3. Cover your dish with foil, sealing it up good and tight.  Toss it in the oven for 40 minutes.
  4. Uncover it, stir it up really well.  Make sure you scrape down the sides and get the sauce mixed up with the noodles evenly again.  At this point, your noodles will be al dente so if you like them softer, cook it a bit longer.  I would think another 10-15 minutes covered would do it but taste and see.
  5. Now put your cheese on top, evenly so you don't have burnt peaks and unmelted valleys.
  6. Toss it back in the oven for 10 more minutes or until you cheese is melted and your pasta is tender.
If you normally 'doctor' your sauce, don't forget to do it - I did and had to add salt after, not my favorite way to do things so be sure to attend to your sauce as you normally would.

This yummy dish can be done with meat as well, just have to take an extra few minutes to brown it first then toss it in with the sauce in step 2.  Seriously, it's that easy and the best part - Hobbit loved it and even had seconds!

05 June 2013

Wednesday Wound-Up

I've been having a bit of tunnel vision with my projects this week.  I want to make sure to be able to finish my Mission and my OWL but I'll be losing a lot of my summer crafting time starting on the 17th so I've worked double time on them.  Here is what I have so far...

I've made it to the roof candies but there is still so much more to go - 72 gumdrops, just to give you an idea... not to mention candy canes, door, windows, trees, peppermints... oh yeah.  Lots to do!

I promised to row 30 (I'm on 28) but I just might go longer for a full shawl instead of a shawlette.
I did sit down during Hobbit's last day of school yesterday and I made one project from start to finish to simply enjoy the quiet.  No TV, no music - just the sound of yarn running through my fingers and the raindrops falling outside.  Here it is...
A two sided pot holder.  It's super squishy and I'm really tickled with how it turned out.
So now I've got five other classes in the HPKCHC to work on (CoMC is taken care of now with the pot holder) and they will be covered with my collection that I'm making for my mama.  Her birthday is coming up next Thursday and this is what I would like to make for her...
They're all out of this awesome book she gave me for Christmas called "Quick-Stitch Crochet".
I'm hoping to be able to get these done all done before I see her next weekend.  I hope she likes it all.  I'm going to go with bright, happy colors because they best represent my mama.  I have a wonderful rainbow variegated that I want to use on the jar and lots of bright leftovers for the other pieces.

That's my week in projects... what are you working on right now?
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