Sunday, December 23, 2012

Brady's Stocking

Alyssa and Stephen didn't know what to put in Brady's stocking, so they put him in it.

Christmas stockings

But first - I finally got the pictures a friend took of me at the Walk through Bethlehem.

Now to the stockings. I've been working on the ones for the new great-grandchildren and their fathers. I forgot to take a picture of Brady's before I delivered it, and the picture I finally got to go where it was supposed to (my camera and computer didn't want to work nicely together for a while yesterday) of Stephen's is not very good. I've asked Alyssa to send pictures of them. Yesterday I delivered Lily's stocking and took along the one I'm working on for Reggie, so he could see how far I've gotten. It will be done for next year.

Stephen has an orange cat named Chester, and that's what Alyssa asked me to put on his stocking. As I was working on it, I decided a mouse on the toe would be a little 'joke.' I've no idea what Chester would do if he saw a mouse. Another little 'joke' is the flap to cover the first E in the name. It doesn't show well here. I did that because Stephen's name tag for work has that E missing, so it reads ST PHEN.

And here is Lily's stocking. I had knit a white stocking to match the other family ones, and then Sara and Reggie decided they wanted a snow person on it. So I started over. (I now have a white stocking in reserve for the next baby.) I think of this as white clouds above a blue sky and snow-covered ground. Sara requested the pink bow rather than a tophat. The nose is an orange button, the eyes are black French knots, the mouth is two stitches of yarn and there are buttons on the bodice. I think it's cute!

And here's the one I made many years ago for me.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Wrapping paper

In the last three days, I've knit the five little draw-string bags for the great-grandchildren's Christmas ornaments.
The one on the far right is the one I found in the Christmas stuff.

The babies won't care, and I don't know what Devin will think, but I'm sure Lexi, Rose and Krya will like them. That holiday table cloth and the little tree displaying my miniature ornaments are all the Christmas decorating I'm doing this year. The tree is topped by a paper angel Lexi made a few years ago.
The picture's rather blurry, but I'm too lazy to take another one.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Winter has arrived

I had to scrape frost off my car yesterday. I hope we don't get any snow this winter, and that the temperature never goes below 20 F.

I've been working on Christmas stockings for the two new great-grandchildren and their fathers. However, when I mentioned to Alyssa yesterday that I have bought the Hallmark ornaments for everyone, she said that Lexi had said recently that she hopes I'll knit my 'wrapping paper' again this year. I guess she wants another little draw-string bag. I came across one in the Christmas stuff the other day, so I only need to make nine new ones, although I may skip it for the adults. I started one after I got home yesterday evening and finished it this morning. I've now started another. Fortunately, they don't take long. I can work on them while I sit here at the computer and read blogs and play Words with Friends on FaceBook.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Walk is over

The Walk through Bethlehem that is. About 2,600 people visited us in the five evenings. Wednesday and Thursday were chilly, and they were 'week nights,' so attendance was light, but the last three nights were mild and busy. It seemed like I had more light this year, but it may just be that I'm no longer looking through cataracts.

My loom came home this morning, so after I finish the Christmas stockings I'm working on, and make another pair of owl mittens, I'll finish weaving the rest of the warp, cut the rugs off, hem them and donate them to the animal shelter for the dogs and cats to sleep on.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Black Friday?

No, I stay away from crowds. But I guess I did sort of participate. Tuesday or Wednesday, I got an email from Michael's giving their hours for the weekend, along with specific coupons for each period. On Thursday, they were open from 4 to 11 pm, and offered a coupon for 30% off entire purchase, including sale items. Since I was coming back through Paducah after 4 pm, I stopped there for the yarn I needed to complete Christmas stockings. Bob stayed in the car and made phone calls to his siblings in NJ (he doesn't get service in Mayfield, but does in Paducah), but Lexi came in with me. The store was busy, but they had a system set up so the line moved pretty quickly.

After that, I dropped Bob off at his apartment in Mayfield, and Lexi at her grandparents about five miles this side of Mayfield. I had reset the trip odometer before I left home that morning, and it read 110.2 when I got home.

Yesterday, I knitted on a pair of owl mittens one of Carmen's friends ordered from me and also on Christmas stockings. Alyssa wants a little drummer boy (like I put on Bobby's 23 years ago) on Brady's stocking and an orange cat on Stephen's. Sara wants a ten-point buck (head only) on Reggie's, but she hasn't decided yet what I should put on Lily's.

Today has also been spent mainly in knitting. A little bit of housework each day, but not much. You know, don't you, that the only place housework comes before needlework is in the dictionary.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


The bear is finished and on its way to Florida.

The loom is dressed (that is, the warp is completely on),
and it's folded, ready for someone from the church to come for it next week.
They will also take these 'miniature rugs' (mugrugs?) and strips of cloth (book marks?) I've woven this year for the children to 'buy' in the rug stall, with the 'dinari' they are given when they enter Bethlehem.

There are 209 pieces in all.

My basket of stuff to weave with, fingerless gloves, etc is ready for me to carry.
I just need to get my costume out of the closet, and I'll be all set.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

"Red and yellow and pink and green . . ."

You don't really want me to sing a rainbow - I didn't inherit the singing voice gene. But I can knit a rainbow.
It's going to be a pie-are-square shawl, a la Elizabeth Zimmerman. It's something I've had in mind for a long time, but I really shouldn't have started it now when I have:

1) a toy to finish and mail to my sister in Florida. I need to duplicate stitch the facial features, stuff it and sew on the ears. She wants to give it to one of her new great-grandchildren for Christmas.
2)  two Christmas stockings for my two new great-grandchildren.  I have the knitting done on one of them and started on the second. When I finish that, I need to duplicate stitch the names and designs - Alyssa wants the drummer boy I used for her brother's stocking 23 years ago on Brady's, but Sara hasn't told me yet what to put on Lily's. Of course, Lily and Brady won't know or care if I don't get them done by Christmas, but their older siblings will.
3) a baby blanket to give to a baby being baptised at church; I don't know when it will be needed. As you can see, I've only done 16 or 18 rows.
4) a little girl's sweater. I'm making it a size two for a girl who was born in June, so there's no rush.
5) three other shawls in various stages of completion.
This one needs a lace border on the bottom in the yarn pictured with it.
This is probably about 1/5 done.
And this may be about 1/4 finished. Yes, I'm using about 20 different yarns. I call it a random shawl, although it is not completely random.

6) And then there's Carmen's blanket that I;m still only about 15% done with. She will get it sometime.

7) I also need to finish warping the loom before someone from the Nazarene Church comes to pick it up next Monday or Tuesday. I have the warp wound onto the warp beam and threaded through the heddles. I just need to sley the reed and tie on to the cloth beam. I decided to do a rather narrow warp this year - only 100 ends. Sleyed at eight threads per inch, it will weave close to a foot wide (there's always draw-in). I think it will be small rugs/mats to give to the animal shelter.

I that ten pictures? Do you think that's enough?

Thursday, November 8, 2012

119.4 miles

That's how far I drove yesterday - Milburn to Metropolis to south side of Paducah to downtown Paducah to west end of Paducah to Sedalia to Milburn.

In Metropolis, I looked through three knitting books for a teddy bear pattern, but didn't find what I wanted, and picked up the claim checks for Bob's luggage (It hadn't made one of the changes enroute from NJ on Monday). On the south side of Paducah, I picked up Bob's luggage at the Greyhound station. In downtown Paducah, I went to the eucharist service at Grace Church. In the west end of Paducah, I met several knitting friends at Panera Bread. At Sedalia, I dropped Bob's luggage off at Sara's house. Bob was there. He had spent the night in his apartment and said it was very quiet. He also said the camp cot I lent him was too low. (I agree; I don't think I could sleep on it.) Sara is going to borrow an air mattress from Reggie's grandmother for him to use (on top of the cot?) until they can get out here in daylight to get the bed that's in the back shed.

It was good to get home. I've spent the whole day today in my house. I don't think I've even unlocked a door. I've gotten together a box of handknit items to send to NJ for victims of Superstorm Sandy. I plan to go into Fancy Farm tomorrow to mail it.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Bearded lady

This is the hat I knit for Carmen recently. She requested it! I also made a silver-gray beard for it.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Recent Knitting

 No, my couch is not really tilted - only the camera was to try to get the whole shawl in. This is made with some yarn that was donated to my church, so of course, the shawl goes to the church to be blessed and given to someone who is ill, bereaved, or otherwise in need of a hug.
 These scarves are for the KY Special Olympics. The colors were dictated by someone on the state level; I'm going to put a note with the scarves saying that black and other very dark colors are difficult for old eyes to work with. The scarf on the left is a simple slip-stitch pattern. Doing two rows at a time of each color made knitting the black bearable. The one on the right has long pieces of gray at each end, with the Special Olympics logo worked in garter stitch. The middle section is alternating single rows of each color, again to make knitting with the black bearable.
This is a hat for Lily that I made up as I went along. I started with three-stitch I-cord, then increased at the beginning of each row until I had fifteen stitches, and worked a few more rows for the earflap. Knit another cord and earflap, then added stitches between the two (more for the front than for the back) and knit the rest of the hat. I hope it fits her well. There really is some pink and blue in the yarn, but it washed out in the picture.

Now working on:

Carmen's blanket - it will get finished some year.
A girl's sweater.
A baby blanket for church.
Two shawls.

I've been using my kitchen timer and working on a project for an hour. Then I get up and move around - put clothes in the washer, fix a meal, etc., then sit down in a different spot and work on a different project. They'll all get done eventually.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Once again, ten days

Since I posted, that is. It's been fairly busy. Daughter Carmen and her friend Mark came last Thursday and stayed until Monday morning. They're from New Jersey, and Mark has a boat there, so they were keeping a pretty close eye on the storm. They met Brady for the first time and enjoyed the other grandchildren, as well. And of course, Lexi and Rose spent as much time as possible with Grammy.

We celebrated Rose's seventh birthday, and this time it was Kyra's turn to have the long, pouty face as Rose opened her gifts.
Sara had taken Rose to WalMart to select her cake - she liked the one that came with a crown. It was actually supposed to go on top of the cake, but the writing didn't leave enough room. The girls had fun putting the crown on everyone's heads, including Lily's and Brady's.

Carmen and Mark took the northern route home on Monday - through Ohio and Pennsylvania. That way they entered New Jersey near Trenton and only had twenty or thirty miles to Carmen's condo. She said they didn't hit any road closures until about a mile and a half from her place; then they only had to turn around and enter the development by the other entrance. Mark's boat is still afloat.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

New Window

Wednesday, the Safelite technician came and installed a new rear window in my car.
It was a beautiful day, so he was able to pull the car out of the carport and have plenty of room to work.

Later I drove to Paducah, doing some errands on the way and others when I got there. I didn't see my knitting friends as I had hoped to, because Panera was closed for some reason. Then I went to Metropolis and had supper with Alyssa and her family.

About 11 a.m. Thursday, as I was working on the computer, it went off. I figured that the electric company, who have been replacing poles and wires in the area, had interrupted the power temporarily. I shifted over to the sofa and started knitting. About an hour and a half later, I realized that the clock radio in the weaving room was working and registered the same time as the non-electric clock by the computer. So I checked the breaker box - one breaker had flipped. It was the same one that had given a problem before. I called the electrician, but told him it was NOT an emergency - only a few ceiling lights and outlets off. He came yesterday and disconnected the line running out, underground, to the shed. He realized that he should have done that when he was here a couple of weeks ago, so he didn't charge me anything.

Later yesterday, I went into Mayfield to return books to the library and attend the 'Fall Festival' at Rose's dance school. Some of the students danced, and then there were games (you had to buy tickets - it was a fund-raiser, after all) and hotdogs and soda.
Rose is in there somewhere. Here she is beforehand with Kyra, who is taking gymnastics this year instead of dance.
And, of course I had to get a picture of Lily. At 3 1/2 months, she looks huge compared to Brady, whom I saw on Wednesday.
It's had to get good pictures of little ones, but I think this is the best of the several that I took. Looks like she needed to be repositioned in that stroller, doesn't it?

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Big Game Hunter

Great-granddaughter Lexi spent the weekend with her father and went deer hunting with him. She got one!
The tattooed man behind her is her father, Andy. Now her grandfather needs to make special deer jerky for her from her own deer. Her grandmother refuses to cook any game, but PawPaw makes wonderful jerky. Maybe she'll share some with me.

I wonder if she helped field-dress the deer?

Edited later to add: Lexi called me this afternoon to tell me about her deer. It is a doe, about 160 pounds. She said she refused to help field-dress it, but she did hold the flashlight - I guess that's helping, too. She said her mom will get the shoulders, and Pawpaw will make jerky for her. I forgot to ask if her dad, grandfather or cousin Jake (age 12) got anything.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Our Gang

That's how my daughter titled her email message when she sent me this picture; one of the girls had posted it on Facebook.
I love it! My two granddaughters and their children. Alyssa and Brady were just home from the hospital. their daughter/sister Alexis is 11 - nothing like raising your own babysitter! Sara is holding Lily (3 months) with Rose (7 years) beside her. Lily was one ounce less at birth than Brady was. She's grown a lot in three months, hasn't she?

And Alyssa says this is what Brady looks like after he has nursed.
Very contented! I told her to put some clothes on him - it's getting cold. She said they both like the skin-to-skin feel while he nurses, and that he starts looking for a nipple as soon as she takes his clothes off.

Do you think he has enough hair? That's par for the course in our family; I don't think we've had any bald babies.


I've finished two shawls in the last few days. They were both started in September.
 This one is done with some wool I spun several years ago. The top triangle is undyed, the dark stripe near the bottom is colored wool dyed with green synthetic dye, and the rest of it was dyed with onion skins, I think. That medium-value stripe in the middle started out gray, I believe, and the rest was white. The shawl pattern is called 198 yds of Heaven. I don't usually use other people's patterns, and when I do, I don't make them exactly as written. This one was meant to be scarf or shawlette size, but I wanted it larger, so I used a larger needle and did at least one extra repeat of the pattern. It is a full-size shawl. I could probably make it even larger, but I did only a gentle blocking.

This one is not real large, but it is as large as I could make it with the one large skein of sport weight acrylic that I found in the yarn that was donated to my church for the knitting group. I started at the bottom with enough stitches for one repeat of the fan and feather pattern I used. I then added one stitch each end, every row, adding more repeats of the stitch pattern as I had enough stitches. I like the wavey edge at the top; it is simply a result of the stitch pattern.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Take the bad along with the good

That's what 'they' say you need to do, isn't it?

First the bad: Friday my neighbor's lawn mower threw a stone at my car and this is the result.
I no longer have comprehensive insurance on the car, and Robbie's homeowners insurance said they would not pay since it didn't happen on his property. Even if they would, the damage is less than the $500 deductible. At first I said something about going halves, and he was OK with that, but then I thought that would be awfully chintzy of me, since he's been mowing a large part of my yard for several years just because he likes doing it.

Now the good:
My great-grandson, Brady Ray Ragsdale was born this morning at 11:33. He weighed 8 pounds, 7 ounces and was 18 inches long.

This morning, before he was born, while she was in labor, Alyssa arranged for her first husband's parents to pick me up when they took Lexi to the hospital to see her little brother and then to return home (end of fall break - back to school tomorrow). They were going to pick me up about 2:30, but when Brady came earlier, she was jumping up and down, begging to go right away. I was ready, so that was OK with me. Beverly and Bobby consider Alyssa their daughter, so they were just as interested in seeing the baby as anyone else. (They are also very nice people and took me to a store to get bread and toilet paper after we left the hospital.)

Lexi and Devin got to hold their baby brother before any of the rest of us did. It was the first time Devin ever held a baby, but Lexi's an old hand at it, because she has several younger cousins. Alyssa had bought T-shirts for them saying "Big Sister Lexi" and "Big Brother Devin" and a onsie saying "Little Brother Brady". She gave the kits the shirts in the hospital room and they put them on right away.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

It's fall isn't it?

So why is my crepe myrtle just now blooming?
I guess because we're just now getting some rain.

The flowering crabapple with white blossoms and green leaves is loaded with fruit for the birds.
But the one with pink blossoms and rusty leaves has lost everything.
The holly berries are just starting to turn red.
They'll be bright red all winter, and come spring the returning birds will feast on them and then sit in the walnut tree and poop in my car.

Thursday, September 27, 2012


Both my older sister and I are getting two of them this year. I already have some, but these are the first for her.

My great-granddaughter was born on July 2nd and hers came yesterday, September 26th. My great-grandson is due in two weeks and hers some time in November.

We must be getting old to have great-grandchildren. Right?

Brady's blanket's done!

 That's a crib mattress (his crib is stored here until they're ready for it), to give you an idea of the size. He'll be using it for many years. His 7-year-old cousin still has hers on her bed, and I think it is not quite this big.
This is the back, to show how neat the intarsia knitting is. It also shows the shadow-knitting name, although backwards.
I was going to crochet a border around the whole thing, but decided to try something different. On the ends of the side borders, I knit up stitches on the right side, and then cast them off in purl on the wrong side the way I had cast off the other stitches. Then I used the yarn tails to connect them to the other cast-off stitches. I'm very happy with the way it looks.

Now on to other projects.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Busy Weekend

Last week, Alyssa asked if I could pick Lexi up Friday afternoon and take her to the Gourd Patch Festival in Mayfield on Saturday. Then I called Sara and asked if I could pick Rose up Saturday morning and take her to the festival, too. She said it would be more convenient and helpful for her if I got Rose on Friday afternoon. OK. Both girls would spend two nights with me, we'd go to the Gourd Patch Festival on Saturday and to church on Sunday.

When I got to Alyssa's house Friday, she said Sara had called and said that Rose didn't have school on Monday (teacher in-service training day), so she hoped I would let her spend Sunday night with me as well. Sure, why not.

Saturday, I spent most of my time at the festival sitting with a friend in the beekeepers group's tent, and let the girls visit the children's tent, ride on the haywagon (very small), and watch some of the gourdmobile races. In the children's tent, they created a fox from pieces of gourd.
Lexi says it was her idea, but Rose helped her find the pieces. (Several of the local people who make things from gourds set aside their scraps for the kids tent each year.)

Between them, the girls brought three American Girl dolls. We got home from Mayfield before 3 pm, and they had a good time playing with the dolls for the rest of the day. They had a birthday party for one on them.

They also played school, and had picture day, then took a picture of the dolls with their pets.

The doll on the right is wearing a dress that they made.

This morning, after church and Sunday school, we went to Panera for lunch and then to Metropolis to take Lexi home. Alyssa suggested that Rose spend the night there, and she would take her home tomorrow. She called Sara to get her OK. I'm sure Rose has had much more fun playing with Lexi and Devin this afternoon than she would have had here. Those two will have to go to school tomorrow, but Alyssa can probably find more things for Rose to do than I could. Of course Rose's 'stuff', except for her doll, is here, but I'll take it to her on Tuesday. Alyssa said they had a bag of things Lexi has outgrown to take to Rose anyway, so she could wear something from that.