August Wrap Up and What I’m Planning

What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.  ~Zig Ziglar

have decided to start and end of the month wrap up to review what I’ve accomplished and what my goals are going forward.  I spent my morning journaling (4 pages! ) all about August and what I finished and what my plans are going forward into September, and even beyond.

Courtesy of Depositphotos.com

What I’ve finished and hope to finish

🧶I finished my Glamrock Tee using Lion Brand Re-Up Cotton

🧶I finished  Shawl and a Beret using my Noro Akari

🧶I want to finish my Worsted Boxy by the middle of September, which  I think this is quite doable as I only have 5” to go before separating for the op portion.  

🧦I need to start working on my Hermoines Every Day sock mate and finish by the middle of September.

🐑 I need finish spinning my Sleepy Hollow colorway and get all three bobbins two plied, or maybe even chain plied, by the end of September.


Sweaters I plan to make over the next several months

🧶First Raglan Sweater by Brooklyn Tweed - use my stash of Lion Brand Wool-Ease in the color Oatmeal 

🧶Irish Coffee by Thea Colman - use my stash of Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in the color Icicle Heather

🧶Felix Cardigan by Amy Christoffers - use my stash of Lion Brand Wool-Ease in the color Oxford Gray

🧶Felix Pullover by Amy Christoffers - use my stash of Lion Brand Wool-ease in the color Umber

🧶Flax by Tin Can Knits - this will be my third Flax to make and will use my stash of Lion Brand Wool-ease in the color Arrowwood

 

Books to finish and to start …  As of today I have read a total of 14 books for the reading challenge I started on Goodreads.  I am not hopeful that I can reach my goal of 30 books, but I am going to really try.

📚I hope to finish Anne Boleyn over the next week weeks.

📚Next I want to read The Little Shop of Found Things by Paula Brackston. This is the first book of her Found Things Series.

📚Following this book, I want to read Jane Seymour by Alison Weir. This is the third in the Tudor Series.

Seeing both my written goals as well as typed goals helps me to focus. Even though I have goals, it’s ok to just be still and enjoy the moment too!

Until next time, be creative!
Tina

Sunday Musings: Plotting, Planning and Contemplating

  “Sunday is the golden clasp that binds together the volume of the week.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

As we prepare for the week to come, I have been thinking about what I want to plant this fall in our pots.  I’m so excited about the possibility of growing herbs and flowers for tea, medicinal purposes and so that we can make our own Herbs de Provence, and other blends too.  Hubby wants to try tomatoes again, so thinking two plants would be nice.

Yesterday at Lowes I had to reframe myself from buying a couple of Enchinacea plants, as well as few other plants.  

It’s still a little too warm for some of the plants I want to buy but I am hoping that the temp of summer will soon subside so I can start getting out container garden back in full swing. 

It was also fun to see a little cottontail hopping around the garden department at Lowes.

Today I am taking a look at my Growing Your Tea Garden book and revisiting my list of flowers, herbs and vegetables to buy.  

I am also working on my Worsted Boxy sweater today.  I’ve made great progress over that last couple of days and hope to separate the sleeves soon.  

As far as reading, I am really enjoying Anne Boleyn and find that I really don’t want to stop reading when I know it’s time to go to sleep.

“We want men to admire us for our courage, our characters, and our intellect, not just our beauty.” ― Alison Weir, Anne Boleyn: A King's Obsession


I am hoping to have a little time this afternoon for spinning. I am still working on my third bobbin of Sleepy Hollow by Quillin Fiberarts.  I really don’t know why it’s taking me forever to finish this but it is. I am planning to have this finished soon so that I can get my bobbins all plied. I am wanting to start spinning my rolags that I created many months ago, and suppose I could start spinning on another one of my wheels but feel I need to focus on what I’ve got going right now.

That’s about all that I have going today, which I think is more than enough. I am looking forward to spending the rest of the day enjoying my knitting and spinning, and listening to our favorite country music playlist today.

Until next time, be creative!
Tina

Friday Round Up…. It’s Been A Great Week!

Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life's coming attractions.” ― Albert Einstein

Flowers from my hubby for our anniversary, 26 years this week! 
This bouquet is perfect for my desk and lovely to look at as I work.

Best co-worker ever!

Excited to get our bookcases straightened up to accommodate 
more books that are coming our way.

Pano views are always fun, so I tried one for my craft room, 
where I also work during the day.

I hope you are ending your week on a good note and that you are ready for a relaxing weekend?

A Sweater Update

 


I really don’t have too much to report regarding my Worsted Boxy sweater other than the fact I just joined a second skein.  I really do love the look of the color and I’m very excited to see how this turns out.  

The only other project I still have languishing on needles is the mate to my toe up Hermoines Every Day Sock.  I haven’t touched this project since the middle of July.  I think it’s because I’m just not in the mood to knit on socks right now, just want to knit all the sweaters.

Speaking of knitting sweaters, in my email this morning from Brooklyn Tweed was a spotlight on their new Tones Collection and an upcoming Kal featuring the Tones Collection.

Courtesy of Brooklyn Tweed


I’m not interested in the KAL, but really liked the simplicity and look of the First Raglan Sweater designed by Jared Flood.  It’s only $4 right now so needless to say I bought the pattern.  I love raglan sweaters and this looks like a quick one to knit up, which makes me very happy.  

Until next time, be creative!

Tina


On The Bookshelf: Another Finish and A New Start

This past Sunday I finished reading Home To Make An American Quilt and I must say I had my doubts about the book but ended up really enjoying it.  


Simply put, it’s about life and relationships of a group of women from different walks of life that are intertwined with one another through the art of quilting.  For those who might be curious, I will say its nothing like the movie and the character Finn is barely noticeable.  

The character I can relate to the most is Constance, who is described as an introvert and who just wants to be left alone. Constance and I are the same.  I do not need others (other than my husband) to make me happy and I have never been one to form friendships easily. I am basically a loner and have always been content with that.

Constance Saunders represents a very different experience of marriage. A solitary woman who has little time or need for friendships with other women, she enjoys a happy relationship with her husband, Howell, contentedly moving wherever his job takes them until he at last retires to Grasse, where she indulges her passion for gardening and joins the quilting circle. Howell dies suddenly, however, and Constance, who has existed quite happily with very few other relationships in her life, is left alone and middle-aged, the center of her world gone. Dean Reed, the husband of one of the other quilters, begins dropping by to offer assistance with household chores, and although their relationship remains platonic, she finds herself on dangerous emotional ground both personally and with the other members of the circle. From eNotes.com

This book has always received mixed reviews but I for enjoyed it and will keep it on my bookshelf to re-read again some day.

I have now started Anne Boleyn by Alison Weir and look forward to

reading this book over the next few weeks.  Since I typically read at night before bed, this one will take a while to finish but I am ok with that as reading is my way to relax and unwind before falling to sleep.

I love Alison Weir and her ability to bring history alive through fiction.  Her writing style flows and paints a vivid picture of what life was like in the early 1500s. 


Until next, be creative!

Tina

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go.” 
― Dr. Seuss

Sunday Musings: Reading and A Little Knitting

Last Thursday I finished A Distant View, which is the 11th book in the Sunday Philosophy series by Alexander McCall Smith.  I have decided this will be the last book of the series I will read as I’m simply board with the predictable plot. I may eventually finish the series, but not any time soon.


Once you love, you cannot take it back, cannot undo it; what you felt may have changed, shifted slightly, yet still remains love. You still feel-though very small-the not-altogether unpleasant shock of soul recognition for that person.”  ― Whitney Otto, How to Make an American Quilt (Goodreads)

I have started How To Make An American Quilt by Whitney Otto, which was made into a movie staring Winona Rider, Ellen Burstyn, Anne Bancroft, Maya Angelou and Kate Capshaw. I’ve had this book for a very long time and really don’t know why I haven’t read it before.  This is a very short book, but one that I am actually enjoying and will be finished with today. There are mixed reviews about this book, which I can understand as it is written in such a way that can make some readers not like it.  For me, it’s about life and how different people react to life.  

I have decided to start Anne Boleyn by Alison Weir (one of my all time favorite historical fiction/non-fiction writers) next. I finished Katherine of Aragon end of last year and absolutely loved it and look forward to reading this one, which is the second novel in the Tudor series.

Born into a noble English family, Anne is barely a teenager when she is sent from her family’s Hever Castle to serve at the royal court of the Netherlands. This strategic move on the part of her opportunistic father also becomes a chance for the girl to grow and discover herself. There, and later in France, Anne thrives, preferring to absorb the works of progressive writers rather than participate in courtly flirtations. She also begins to understand the inequalities and indignities suffered by her gender.

Anne isn’t completely inured to the longings of the heart, but her powerful family has ambitious plans for her future that override any wishes of her own. When the King of England himself, Henry VIII, asks Anne to be his mistress, she spurns his advances—reminding him that he is a married man who has already conducted an affair with her sister, Mary. Anne’s rejection only intensifies Henry’s pursuit, but in the absence of a male heir—and given an aging Queen Katherine—the opportunity to elevate and protect the Boleyn family, and to exact vengeance on her envious detractors, is too tempting for Anne to resist, even as it proves to be her undoing. 

While history tells of how Anne Boleyn died, this compelling new novel reveals how fully she lived.
’ - From Amazon

My goal is to finish the remaining four novels in this series by the end of the year.  Due to the size of the books and the detail, that may not happen but it’s a great goal to have.

On another note -

It has been a lovely morning enjoyed with my cup of coffee and my knitting.  I am truly loving how my Boxy Sweater in knitting up and the color is just the perfect shade of gray.  This definitely will be a great sweater for this late fall and I’m looking forward to wearing it !

 I hope you all are having a wonderful relaxing day today, and are able to enjoy all the things you love to do on a Sunday.

Until next time, be creative!

Tina

Friday FO: A Glamrock Tee

I have been trying to knit with cotton and have been trying various brands.  I love how my cotton Nuuk Sweater turned out but the jury is still out on my Glamrock Tee that I finished earlier this week.  I am not sure if I am too happy with it and here’s why … the cotton yarn I used (yes I knew better) made a very heavy fabric and it shrunk, not just a little but about 2”.  

I have tried blocking it but it remains the same size. So, my finished tee is now destined to be a topper over a long sleeve shirt for the fall.  I guess this will be a good comprise, as the only other alternative is giving it away, which I really don’t want to do.


The particulars:

Pattern:  The Glamrock Tee by Tatsaina Matsiuk. The pattern is easy to follow and very well written.  Simple lace design at the top and a boxy style.

Yarn: Re-Up by Lion Brand  This is a 100% recycled cotton yarn (which I like) that comes is quite a few colors.  It’s easy to knit with but in my humble opinion was not great choice for this project. The knitted fabric is very heavy and shrinks easily.  Stitch definition was not very good either, but I think it was due to the needle size used. The jury is still out on this yarn and I have another sweaters worth in the color Denim Blue that I am not sure about.  The price of the yarn is $2.49 a skein and I used a total of eight skeins for a total cost of $19.92. You seldom can buy a sweater for $20 bucks unless it’s on clearance, so very reasonable.

Needles:  Knitters Pride Zing in US Size 7.  I love the Zing needles and have purchased quite a few from my favorite go to shop, Handsome Fibers on Etsy.

If I decide to make this pattern again, I will make it a bit longer (too short for me) and definitely use a better quality yarn

Until next time, enjoy your day!

Tina

A New Project on My Needles

Sometimes you just need to find the perfect mindless knitting project to work on while you take calls or have pauses throughout the day.  I love keeping my hands busy while I talk, it actually helps me listen better and concentrate.

So yesterday I casted on a new project, the Worsted Boxy by Joji Locatelli and I’m so excited to use my stash of Malabrigo Rios in the color Pearl.  This yummy soft yarn has been in my stash for over 4 years and think this is the perfect pattern to compliment the yarn.



This will be the perfect knitting project why I work, and one that makes be very happy!

Until next time, be creative!

Tina 

To Read or To Listen

Read to look at carefully so as to understand the meaning of (something written, printed, etc.):  to read a book; to read music.

Listen to give attention with the ear; attend closely for the purpose of hearing;

Today’s post is sort of a personal rant, so I do ask for forgiveness ahead of time. Over the last year or so I have noticed on blog posts, social media posts, podcasts and video blogs that people say one thing but actually mean another.  So when it comes down to listening vs. reading, you either listen to an audio book or you read an actual book.  Listening and reading or two separate functions and should not be commingled to mean the same thing.

“We all want to spend more time lost in the pages of great book. That's the idea behind our annual 2021 Goodreads Reading Challenge! It's simple: Every January readers set a goal of how many books they want to read that year, and we help them keep track of it. This year more than 4 million readers have joined the Challenge, pledging to read a total of 218 million books!” - Goodreads

Please for the sake of proper grammar, either state that you are listening to a book or actually reading a book (meaning you have printed material in hand and you are physically turning pages).  For those of you participating in the Goodreads Reading Challenge , the challenge is to read a physical book not listen to a book.  Again, two separate functions.   

I personally listen to audio books while knitting,  it’s like listening to music for me and I enjoy it tremendously,  but I do not count the audio book as one read.  But when I want to read, I actually pick up a book and read it, and note that I read it in my reading challenge. 

I am sorry for my rant but it’s a major pet peeve of mine lately and I find it rather sad that audio books are being included in many reading challenges. 

Until next time, happy reading or listening!

Tina


On The Bookshelf: A Distant View Of Everything

I am currently reading A Distant View, which is the 11th book in the Sunday Philosophy series by Alexander McCall Smith.   

I started reading this series back towards the end of June and cannot believe I have finished 11 books! They are quick reads and great for reading before bed, but it’s time for me to move onto something else.  I will finish the series, only 5 more to read, but at a later time. 

A new baby brings an abundance of joy to Isabel Dalhousie and her husband, Jamie—but Isabel’s almost four-year-old son, Charlie, is none too keen on his newborn brother. In fact, Charlie refuses to acknowledge Magnus, and Isabel must find a way to impress upon her older son the patience and understanding that have served as guiding principles in her own life. These are, of course, the qualities that bring Bea Shandon, an old acquaintance of Isabel’s, to seek her help in a tricky situation. Bea is something of a matchmaker and has brought together a cosmetic surgeon and a successful banker at her most recent dinner party. But new information comes to light about the cosmetic surgeon that causes Bea to doubt the auspiciousness of the match. Isabel agrees to find out more, but her inquiries take an unexpected turn, and she starts to wonder which of the two she should be investigating after all. As ever, her intelligence, quick wit, and deep empathy for others will come to her aid as she grapples with the issues that are her bread and butter: friendship and its duties, the obligation of truthfulness, and the importance of perspective. - from the authors site

I do love cozy mysteries and Alexander McCall Smith never disappoints. His books are always light and easy reads, with just the perfect touch of a good murder mystery.

On Audible I am listening to the Crow Trap by Ann Cleves. I enjoy listening to books while I knit and find them to be the perfect compliment to my knitting, especially on weekends before my hubby gets up.  I love all of Ann Cleeves books, she’s another favorite author of mine.

So what to read next but not necessarily in this order…


  • Any Dream Will Do by Debbie Macomber 
  • Changing Habits by Debbie Macomber 
  • Into the Wilderness by Sara Donati
  • Anne Boleyn by Alison Weir
  • The Woman In White by Wilke Collins (Classic)
  • Wuthering Heights but Emily Bronte (Classic)
  • How to Make An American Quilt by Whitney Otto
Now to decide which one to read once I finish A Distant View of everything. 

Happy reading!

In the Mood For Sewing 🧵

I am beginning to think fashion of today is not for me.  Clothes are made cheaply and everything seems to be made in rayon or polyester blends.  I grew up wearing polyester (a child of the 70’s) and everything my mom made me was nothing but polyester. So needless to say, I am not fond of that fabric and besides when you live in a hot climate like Arizona, you need breathable fabrics such as cotton and linen, and even lightweight wool.

In 2019 I learned to make my own tops and basically made several variations of Shirt No. 1 by Sonya Philips. At the beginning of 2020, I made a couple more shirts, both out of linen. I love this pattern simply because it’s easy to change up.  So this past week I bought fabric at Joanns and Hobby Lobby for new tops and I can’t wait to start sewing again !

Cotton and linen fabrics 

I also decided to break out of the mold a bit and try two patterns by Sew House Seven. I purchased these two patterns, The Free Range Slacks and The Remy Raglan, from Bobbie Lou Fabric on Etsy. I am rather excited about making these designs and now need to find the right fabric for them.

Courtesy of Bobbie Lou Fabric ( Sew House Seven )


Until next time … be creative!
🧶🧵✂️

Sunday Musings: Baking and A Little Knitting

 

“Sunday is a time when you sit back and reflect on all the blessings that you have received. Smile at all the good things that you are enjoying.” – Sera Train

Sundays are still my favorite day of the week.  It’s a day of quiet reflection shared with my husband.  Sundays have become our day of rest, preparing us for the week ahead.  It has also become the day we plan meals for the upcoming week and even make a few things ahead of time.

I prepare everything and my wonderful husband cooks it on the grill, which is such a blessing because we don’t heat up the house.  We have learned to use our cast iron cookware for pretty much everything, and my husband has the cooking time down to a fine science.

I cheat and use Pillsbury Frozen Southern Style biscuits

Homemade Focaccia 

Homemade upside down cornbread with onions 

Homemade chocolate walnut brownies 
The rest of our day is usually spent watching old movies, which gives me the ability to work on my knitting.  I am getting closer to finishing the second panel of my Glamrock Tee… this makes me so happy!

Here’s a peek at the first finish panel…


It looks a bit large, but that’s what I am aiming for and hope it will be loose and comfy to wear.



Enjoy your Sunday and until next time, be creative!

On The Bookshelf: What’s Old Can Become New Again

 “I think books are like people, in the sense that they’ll turn up in your life when you most need them.” – Emma Thompson

Books have been part of my life since I was a little girl.  I truly love books and seem to have formed a fondness for vintage books of late, especially from the early 1900s (the Edwardian Period).  The covers were a beautiful work of art and the stories rich with love, betrayal and humor.

One author I really enjoy is Myrtle Reed, author of Lavender and Old Lace.  I have been collecting her books over the last few months and so very happy to find ones with such lovely covers!


I keep the majority of my vintage books inside our antique Swedish cabinet that my Mom gave to us many years ago.  It’s perfect and it’s also a great place for me to keep my collection of Turkish spindles.


And inside view …

I am slowly running out of room but my husband is encouraging me to keep collecting, even if they have to be boxed up.  Some day we hope to have a larger home that we can have one room turned into a library.  I’ve always wanted a home library and can’t wait to have that dream come true.

Do you love old books too?  

If yes, who is your favorite author?

Friday FOs: A Shawl and Beret

Oh wow, it’s been exactly a month since by last post!  Time has slipped by me once again, so today is a short catch up post.

I am still working on my Glamrock Tee and now working on the second panel.  I was hoping to have it finished by the end of July, but that didn’t happen but the good news, I’ve made great progress and hope to have it finished very soon!

I finished two projects this past week and a half, a Grain Shawl and a Liatris Beret . The best part, I was able to use one skein and half of my leftover Noro Akari from my Quick Win Raglan.



I love how both of these knits turned out and I can’t wait to wear them this fall and winter here in Phoenix.  The yarn was the perfect match to both patterns and I honestly say I couldn’t be any happier on how they both turned out.

Now to concentrate on my sweater!

Until next time m be creative!