Plain Jane Knits Up A Storm

A few musings about my needlecraft hobbies - knitting, crocheting, quilting, & cross-stitch along with my other love, genealogy. While growing up, I used to HATE the term "Plain Jane", but when it comes to knitting & crocheting, I've realized that I really *am* a Plain Jane in that I don't use fancy yarns.

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Location: Northern Detroit Metro area, Michigan, United States

Saturday, September 30, 2006


I haven't been very good at posting recently. Thanks to everyone who sent well wishes to Mom - they're much appreciated.

What I have been doing is knitting. I turned in 7 hats and 2 scarves last Thursday - 5 of the hats were made to match or coordinate with scarves that had been knit or crocheted by others; the other two hats were part of sets with the last two scarves. I've finished one hat (to go with an already knit scarf) and one set since Thursday and have another hat on the needles. Last Saturday, I bought three skeins of Rainbow Dreams - those wonderful colorways that go with so many solid colors - and I've been using those in the sets I've been making as the "panes" in the window pane patterned hats and as a center stripe down garter stitch scarves that I've been knitting lengthwise. The one I'm working on now will use a rusty brown for the solid and Maritime which has blues with a touch of gold & rust as the variegated. I'll try to get photos before I turn these in.

Part of the problem with lack of photos is that I'm trying to de-junk this room and in the process, the desk behind me where most of the photos have been taken is covered with "junk" waiting for decisions about what to do with it - store or toss.. Have I ever mentioned that I'm a "pack-rat" married to another "pack-rat"?? I don't know whether to add a {g} or a {sigh} to that last statement. Suffice it to day that this house contains a lot of "stuff" - mostly books, magazines, electronic gear, yarn & fabric. I take complete responsibility for the yarn & fabric as those are my hobbies. The electronic gear, except for this computer, my Walkman (an original 1980 model) & a CD player, are my DH's and we're both responsible for the books & magazines. I think it's time to buy some more storage bins and pack the magazines (mostly 20+ years of quilting magazines) into the crawl space. Then there's all the genealogy information that I've printed out over the years - I'm spending more time on transcribing data that others can use than I am on my own research so those notebooks could probably be packed away also. I need to get organized, but that's a skill that I'm still trying to develop {sigh}...

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Cover Your Head

I just joined another KAL - the Cover Your Head KAL hosted by Adelle. The button is over there at the top of the current KAL list on the left (scroll down a little). Sallee of Knitnana & Nana Sadie Rose fame told me about it and given the number of hats I've been knitting for our K4 group, it seemed a natural.

Speaking of hats, I've finished two more plus one scarf and I'm within about 8 rows of finishing the second scarf. With a lot of the show I like having their season premiers this week, I've been having lots of time to sit and knit. Reading has been going a bit slower however as I started the book I'm reading now three days ago and I'm barely half way through. I read a paragraph or two during commercials, so I'll get there eventually.

The garden is on it's last legs. All the rain we had a week or two ago was too much for the tomatoes and the ones that were still on the vines split because of the excess water. The deer nibbling the tops of the plants means that the late blossoms were eaten so while there was a wonderful harvest for about three weeks, all that's left besides the occasional grape tomato hiding in the grass are the ones finishing ripening in baskets in the kitchen. Between my plants and Mom's, we were able to can nine pints of stewed tomatoes for her for the winter and I finally learned how to can, something I haven't attempted since I helped as a child. I picked what will probably be the last of the basil yesterday. If we don't get frost soon, it may regrow some but I'm not betting on it. I still haven't tried using the Thai basil but once the container of regular basil is turned into pesto, I may try making some from the Thai variety and freezing it to use in stir-fries this winter.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Still Kicking

It's been a while again, but I'm still alive and kicking. Much of my time lately has been spent taking care of Mom whose health hasn't been exactly robust recently. It's a blessing that she lives so close and I can be over there three or four times a day.

Last Thursday was our K4 group meeting - the first one I've been able to attend since August 17th. I kept on working other than the week when I had to cold and felt just too lousy to pick up the needles, so I had 9 hat & scarf sets to turn in. Unfortunately, I didn't get a photo of them, but they were very similar to the ones I've been posting - the "window pane" hat with a matching garter stitch scarf. I have two more sets complete (one I missed packing when I went on Thursday, the other finished since then) and the hat for a third set done and the scarf started.

Yesterday & today I spent some time messing around with tiny needles (sizes 2 & 3) and sport or baby yarn to make dresses for a Barbie doll. My almost 6 year old grand-daughter has discovered Barbie. It's been years since I've knit anything like this and while I used to whip up outfits when the girls were little, the years have made my hands a bit more stiff so that they cramp when I'm using the small needles. I was able to finish two simple dresses and plan on trying something a bit more advanced next as I work my way up to the glittery ball gown.

Thursday, September 07, 2006


Anyone out there besides me remember TW3 from the mid-60s? That Was The Week That Was - a basically irreverent look at the news of the week, especially the political side. The time since my last post could accurately be titled Those Were The Two Weeks That Were and I wish weren't.. Suffice it to say that between everyone in the family being sick and car problems the weeks haven't been pleasant and there wasn't much to write about that wouldn't sound like a major gripe session.

I have been knitting and will have lots to turn in when I get back to the Sr. Center. I missed one Monday knitting class because I didn't want to give anyone my cold and this last Monday was a holiday, so hopefully by ... yikes, I just realized that I have to take Mom to the doctor again next Monday.. aarrgggg...

In scanning other blogs, I realized that the Summer Reading Challenge ended on the 31st of August. I posted about joining back on May 22nd and again on June 3rd - other than that, I've just been reading & knitting, so here's my list between June 2nd (I didn't count the book listed for June 1st because I finished it in the wee hours of the morning and most of it had been read during May) and the end of August.

  • Capital Crimes, Stuart Woods, 29 Aug
  • The Run, Stuart Woods, 26 Aug
  • Break No Bones, Kathy Reichs, 23 Aug
  • Reckless Abandon, Stuart Woods, 21 Aug
  • The Short Forever, Stuart Woods, 20 Aug
  • Deep Lie, Stuart Woods, 19 Aug
  • Iron Orchard, Stuart Woods, 16 Aug
  • Dark Harbor, Stuart Woods, 15 Aug
  • Winter House, Carol O'Connell, 13 Aug
  • Thraxas At War, Martin Scott, 11 Aug
  • One Good Knight, Mercedes Lackey, 9 Aug
  • Dragon's Blood, Todd McCaffrey, 7 Aug
  • Second Sight, Amanda Quick, 4 Aug
  • Liberty, Stephen Coonts, 2 Aug
  • Bait & Switch, Barbara Ehrenreich, 29 Jul
  • Dragon Fire, Anne & Todd McCaffery, 27 Jul
  • Nickled & Dimed, On (Not) Getting By In America, Barbara Ehrenreich, 25 Jul
  • Whisker of Evil, Rita Mae Brown, 23 Jul
  • Dark Watch, Clive Cussler & Jack Du Brul, 22 Jul
  • Bess of Hardwick: Empire Builder, Mary Lovell, 18 Jul
  • The Jury Master, Robert Dugoni, 12 Jul
  • Nightlife, Thomas Perry, 8 Jul
  • Almost A Lady, Jane Feather, 2 Jul
  • The Twelfth Card, Jeffery Deaver, 29 Jun
  • Around the Quilt Frame, Kari Cornell, Ed.,26 Jun
  • The American, Andrew Britton, Jun 24
  • A Million Nightingales, Susan Straight, Jun 21
  • Circle of Quilters, Jennifer Chiaverini, Jun 17
  • Midnight Runner, Jack Higgins, Jun 14
  • Tyrannosaurus Canyon, Douglass Preston, Jun 11
  • The Sinister Pig, Tony Hillerman, Jun 6
  • The Wailing Wind, Tony Hillerman, Jun 4
  • Hunting Badger, Tony Hillerman, Jun 2

I think that's 32 - none of them with the exception of Bess of Harwick and maybe the Barbara Ehrenreich books are what you might consider heavy reading. They all came from the library with the exception of Nickle & Dimed which I found at a garage sale. I read for fun and my challenge was to keep track of what I read, so I guess I succeeded.. The books were all good reads (the ones that weren't were put back on the "to return" pile and never listed except to disappear from the "Currently Reading" position. If you look over the list, you'll see that it's fairly eclectic - mysteries, political novels, science fiction, the occasional romance, one biography, two on trying to find decent jobs in today's economy. Those last two were depressing as was this week's POV Waging a Living on PBS. We went to the library Tuesday and I currently have another pile of books waiting to be read. I'll continue listing them as I read them, hopefully as consistently as I attempted to do during the challenge.. Anyone up for a Fall Reading Challenge?

Acrylics Anon/a