Thursday, December 4, 2014

I survived Black Friday weekend!

When did "Black Friday" turn into 4 days? Oh! It was amazing. I am not a big shopper (except yarn stores). I really just love the energy of it. People are all full of food and family love in fancy outfits. I am really big on people watching. I grab coffee and just wander and smile at everyone. They miiiight think I am crazy but they always smile back... so it works for me.

It is funny how late it always feels. It is just so dark so early this time of year.

My big guy was visiting an uncle for the holiday. He had a great time! So, I just had to put the little one to bed and sit the husband in front of his monitor to work through his turkey coma on FFXIV... and away I went.

First, was Walmart. I was nearly hit in the parking lot but that did not phase me. I scored the Nabi 2 at half price. So I am pretty much done for the little ones Christmas. Half price! *cheesy smile* No drama involved either. I walked up, she gave me a wristband. A few minutes later I came back to her and she gave me the box. I grabbed a few other items at irrisistable prices ($4 character jammies...yes, please.) The lines at checkout weren't even long. I was starting to worry about Black Friday. Was it a passing trend?

Next, I hit Ulta. I filled up a bag and then looked at the line and I put that bag down. Don't worry. Black Friday is not a passing trend. The Ulta line proved it. The deals were not beefy enough to warrant that line. Nothing was beefy enough to warrant that line. I could just feel other deals slipping between my fingers if I stood near THAT LINE. It was crazy. So, I left. I hope I find that dirt cheap perfume sampler on Ebay.

I went to a local outdoor mall. It was CHRISTMAS! Christmas music, twinkling lights, people all bundled up. It was right out of a holiday card. *sigh* I wandered. It's what I do. I grabbed some odds and ends over the next two hours and then headed home. I hugged everyone. The holidays do that to me. It's a month of alot of hugs.

This weekend I made cocoa from scratch and finished my shark slippers. See!


These are off to to sit under a tree for a few weeks....just lurking. *insert Jaws music*



Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

I have so much to be thankful for. Thanks for visiting and have a wonderful holiday!


Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Walk at Oak Point Park

We got out this beautiful fall day and took a walk at Oak Point park. I have never been. It is very close to home and I look forward to going back. The trees are all bright colors and everywhere you step it goes crunch from the leaves that have fallen. The grass is sparse so the interesting weeds are really making themselves seen. Such amazing nettles and grasses. The sky here in Texas really is just amazing.













Tuesday, November 25, 2014

One week off...

Its official! Happy Holidays.

The kids are off of school all week. 9 days. Today is day four. I feel the pressure to "do something" with them". Something warm and memorable. It can be a challenge to entertain with kids that are 12 years apart. One is always waiting on the other to finish having fun so that they can start having fun. And neither has anyone to "have fun with" in this situation. Fortunately, they are both really good sports.

So here we are in what still feels like a strange new place and I want to find "nature" and "beauty" to share with them. Not so much cultural beauty or contrived fun. Play-lands like Chuck E. Cheese kind of turn me off. They get plenty of junk-fueled over stimulation without me seeking it out.

So were to find that? I found a book to help me in my seeking.



Thank you, Lune Blog. I have had her on bloglovin forever and she always inspires me by the pictures of her little ones in the wilderness. It makes me want to move. It makes me feel kind of lazy. Darn mommy guilt.

But, I am excited about getting this book. It looks like a bit of a "nature checklist" of things to seek out with the boys. As for now I will be looking into nearby hiking trails and parks.

Wish me luck?
Mel

Friday, October 10, 2014

I Love Yarn Day

Happy Friday! Even more monumental...Happy I LOVE YARN DAY!!! 

Today I am riddled with messy allergies (ragweed *glare*) but I pushed through and after helping out the teacher at my little guys school I went yarn shopping. Michaels and then Hobby Lobby.

Haul time!!! I figure I will divide them up by store in case anyone wants to go get something that they see.

First Michaels!

And now Hobby Lobby!

The driving force behind my shopping was threefold.

Firstly, I have been serial watching "Once Upon a Time" on Netflix this week. I am really enjoying the show. I believe I am on episode 14 now. There is some amazing yarn smut on this show. But, I had to push pause and search Ravelry when I saw this picture:


Its amazing and I need it. So I grabbed some grey bulky yarn today and downloaded a free pattern for it. 

This one is next: 


Here is the free pattern for it. Thank you, movieknitters!

And I will need Ruby's hat, too. (Pattern) I grabbed the red sport weight yarn today. 



Secondly, I am sending three swaps. My main items are all ready to ship but I like to send fun little extras...candy and tiny crafted items. So I got some materials and fun stuff to throw in there.

Lastly, I have a project...moon jars! They are magical and amazing and I MUST make some. (I tried to get everything at Michaels and Hobby Lobby but had to go to Walmart for the solar lights). I will take pics and we will walk down the road of moon jars together.


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Chevron Cowl

Its Fall!!!!

Wow...you know I love fall. I have done posts just on the different flavors I like to hunt out in the fall. This year I have been digging my heals into a brand new goal: debt killing. So I will there will be less "what I like to buy" and more "favorite recipes" this season.

Saving is really amazing. It is amazing how little things really do add up. I am guilty of thinking that penny pinching is thankless. But no. Its so freeing to find more than you expect in the bank at the end of the month. It also appeals to the puzzle player in me. Hunting deals and seeing how little I can spend in a certain amount of time is just fun.

I think the trick to all things in life is to see it as a lesson and keep it positive. Life is too short to not keep your heart and mind in the moment and count your blessings.

Oh...and I crochet!




So this little chevron cowl is on its way to keep a good friend warm and add some color to her winter. I think I need to make one for myself with some yarny fringe. What do you think?

Here is an action shot:





Its abotu 24" long. I think I would make mine just a little longer so I can loop it. She loves tangerine and turquoise but I would probably opt for some purple. I used I Love This Yarn from Hobby Lobby/ You can buy it online if you dont have a local Hobby Lobby. It feels alot like Red Hearts "With Love" yarn...except this doesn't pill like theirs does. So "I Love This Yarn" is great for smooshy items like cowls and baby blankets. It washes great, too!

This is the pattern I used from Crochet In Color. Its for a scarf but I just crocheted for 24" of the pattern. Then I used a metal yarn needle and sewed it up the side with a whip stitch.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Booties!



Today has been a day of booties. Yes! Just a bootie-ful day. Just full of yarn and tiny, pretty buttons and flowers. It was so nice.

I have crocheted many booties and today I mixed and mingled all my favorite parts to make some booties for baby girl that is on her way soon.

Aren't they precious?!

I have had my babies and I am happy to be past that point in my life. Still things like this just make my ovaries do a cartwheel.

I wrote up a pattern in case you would like to make some yourself. But, if not I will be happy to make something for you over at my Etsy shop in a custom order.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Winter Is Coming!!!

Winter Is Coming!!!



My girlfriend and her family are stationed in Alaska this year. The kids are going to have recess outside even when its SUPER cold. I made this for her little guy to stay at the school and keep him warm.

Balaclava is an old fashioned name for helmet liner. It stems from long ago during the Crimean War. The British soldiers were not getting their warm clothing quickly enough while they were fighting in Russia. These were handmade from wool yarn.

This balaclava was crocheted from a paid pattern from Ravelry but I can definitely see writing a few balaclava patterns of my own. Such a convenient item for the little ones. I never would have expected my five year old to be this comfortable in something like this. It is usually such a struggle to get hats and scarves on him. It was super soft. I used "I Love This Yarn" from Hobby Lobby. A nice, easy care acrylic. The hook was a Clover I hook which made this work up really quickly.

The pattern works up in one piece and then you sew it on the side of the head and below the chin to form the shape. This is actually the toddler size on him.

My husband liked it so much that he asked me to make him one for when he is working in the cold this season. His will be two strands of Patons Classic Wool and a Clover J Hook.

Here are some more pics of my little guy in the balaclava!




Thursday, June 26, 2014

Trader Joe's

I have been in Texas for nearly a year and one thing has been desperately missing from my life. Trader Joe's. We have one relatively close but I have not had inclination to get over there. Then yesterday morning I decided that enough is enough and I made the voyage. Part of me was scared that it would be different here. Like Inn-N-Out. *pout*

But, I turned the corner and there it was!



 I heard heavenly music over the kids complaining. (There is a makeup store two doors down...it scared them. Ulta is never the quick trip I tell them it will be.)

I didn't get a haul picture and I really wish I had. But some of the massively exciting (for me!) parts were:


The Blueberry & Pomegranate Unsweetened Green Tea tastes refreshing and earthy. It feels so good...hydrating and energizing. So portable in the pretty green bottle. I can keep one in my bag all the time to keep me off the crack (Diet Coke and Starbucks). 

I also love the containers of fruit...peaches and nectarines...and apples...and bananas. I could go on. But I hit the veggies pretty hard, too. Huge portabello mushsrooms and asparagus. My husband was thrilled. I grabbed a head of cauliflour, sliced it thick and made two cauliflour steaks by coating them with a little coconut oil, salt and chili pepper...then I baked them along with the extra florettes that didn't make it into steak form...for about half an hour. I flipped it a few times. Really hearty. 


These Green Tea Mints are soooo yummy. I wouldn't have thought that the flavors would meld well. But, they really do. Its a nice smooth mint in a super cute little leaf shape. 


Tonight we are sauteing the asparagus and having it with their meatballs. They have two kinds...turkey and italian-style beef (and a "party style" that I have never tried. But I am curious). Both with no preservatives or artificial coloring. They cook up super fast and they can go in anything! Sandwiches, spaghetti, soups...you can eat them alone. They are delicious and have lots of protein to keep me from getting cranky.

But, I think my favorite part of the Trader Joe's experience is the flowers. They have the best flower display when you walk in and the prices are just so low...I can't say no. If $3.00 is going to keep fresh flowers on my counter for me to look at while I am doing dishes then I am a much happier girl. This time I got sunflowers. They are my husbands favorite. They really brightened him up. He came home early from work yesterday feeling sick (since Saturday). The Texas weather is crazy right now. The humidity and rainstorms...you would hardly think we were in late June and a drought. Every time we have a storm I wonder what on earth our area is doing with the rain water...how are we still in this drought? So odd!

So, I will end with this awesome picture of the Trader Joe's floral display...low prices, tin buckets and all. I love it!




P.S. I don't work for Trader Joe's...but you would think I did. I wonder if they get a good discount...now back to my yarn. 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Cowl Weather

I'm sick. :( Sore throat, cough...just a mess.

We have been stuck inside the house since the ice storm in early December. I was not made for the cold.

My little one has been full of four year old fears lately. Mostly water and darkness. Teaching him how to empower himself and that he is safe is note easy while he is down with the flu.

But I have been a little productive!! Lots of knitting and I made myself a cowl. Its black with hot pink (both I Love This Yarn from Hobby Lobby) and a thread of sequined metallic for fun.



Its birthmonth and I plan to fill it with fun!!



Here is Mooglys Link for the free pattern. Thanks Moogly!!!