Friday, November 23, 2007
Connor's Blanket - Take 2

I posted a week ago about a name blanket I was making for my Landlord / ladie's son Connor. Tonight I finally finished it, and I'm pleased with how it came out. I used Crochet Kim's great pattern.

I've made this twice in the past, and both times had a bit of difficulty with the heart border. This time the whole thing worked up easily. It's amazing how a little more experience helps!

For some reason, though, my original center panel was way too small. I e-mailed Kim and she told me that it would probably work, but I decided to go ahead and make a new name panel in reverse colors. For some reason the cream color yarn seems heavier, and using the same size hook, the panel came out much larger.

I'm not sure if I prefer it with the same background color all the way through, or with the contrast color in this blanket. I did use a combination of the two color in the border, which I think finishes the blanket nicely.

I hope Connor and his parents like this blanket!
As for the green name panel, I have a friend in Texas with a baby named Connor. I was going to make another blanket for him, but she said she would like a wall hanging for his room. I'm going to try and think of some way to make this decorative and possibly useful, too.

Sense of Community
We love this town.

One of the things we hated about Florida, was that there was no sense of community or neighborhood. People went about their personal business, and while strangers might smile at each other on the street, they remained strangers. In NYC there was a much greater sense of community, and I missed that.

Well, now we're in this small town in Indiana, and the sense of community is wonderful. People talk to each other in public places. There are cultural and community events. It's wonderful! This tiny town offers so much - its really fabulous.

A friend at work told me that on the Friday after Thanksgiving, there is a canopy lighting ceremony in the square downtown. They light the tree in in front of the courthouse and all the trees along the square, and Santa comes to greet the kids. Well, we're not kids, we don't have kids, and we're not Christians, but we wanted to be part of it so we went. What a great time.

We went into the courthouse for the first time. Inside was a gorgeous tree decorated for Christmas. It was tastefully covered in small white lights, gold and silver balls, and white streamers marking the 100th anniversary of the courthouse building. As we moved closer to see the tree, we looked up through the 3 story vestibule and saw that the dome of the courthouse is breathtakingly beautiful! I've looked online to find photos to post, but couldn't find any. The dome is decorated with lovely stained glass windows and beautiful murals. It literally took out breaths away!

Outside, the square was packed withe people all bundled up in the cold (it was only 32 degrees, brrrrr). People brought there kids and dogs out. There were clowns and characters to entertain the kids. Local restaurants and organizations gave out free (yes, I said free) coffee, cocoa and hot spiced cider. There was a brass band, and several singing groups. The mayor spoke, the provost from the university spoke, and then Santa came.

The evening was sponsored by the local hospital and hospice, and honored the lives and memories of patients.

It was such a nice night! We feel so lucky to be part of community that remembers what the word "community" means.

Thursday, November 22, 2007
Happy Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday! I've always had this ideal vision of what Thanksgiving should be - a house full of family and friends. Everyone cooking and laughing and eating together. Great food, great friends, great memories.

This year we didn't have a full house. It was just me and hubby and the cats - not my ideal, but a nice relaxing day. We made a full Thanksgiving dinner - no turkey - I don't eat it, and hubby didn't need a whole turkey for himself, but fish and all the fixings - and it was good if I may say so myself.

Despite the lack of a full house and the type of Thanksgiving celebration that I would have loved, we have so much to be thankful for. I'm so blessed to be married to my best friend. Our families are happy and healthy and since we've moved we get to see them all more. We have the best friends that anyone could ask for.

I have a new job - one that I really am enjoying and working for people who I genuinely like and respect. While we haven't yet sold our home, we found a great house to rent - very comfortable and close to work. We love the new town. Our cats give us much love. We're closer to extended family and not quite so far from some of our best friends.

Yes, life is good, and Thanksgiving is the perfect time to count our blessings. I hope that next year we get to celebrate with our family and friends, and that we still enjoy all the blessings that we feel today.

Friday, November 09, 2007
New Cap Design

I designed this little cap pattern for Marine Corps Kids. I love working with ribbed caps, and the striping in this makes it a bit more interesting and fun.

I've shared the pattern on the Marine Corps Kids site. If you like the pattern, please consider donating a finished cap to the cause!

Thursday, November 08, 2007
Connor's blanket

I just love Crochet Kim's pattern for a personalized Baby Afghan. I've made this pattern twice before, for my two great-nieces. Now I'm making one for the baby boy of the people who's house we are renting.

I just finished the center name section. Soon I'll start on the heart border. The last two times I had a bit of trouble with the border, but was able to pull it off in the end. I'm hoping that this time with a bit of experience and a somewhat more sturdy yarn, this one will go without a hitch.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007
So much yarn, so little time

The move, the new job, business travel, and new home disorganization have really cut into my crochet time. I don't like it. I feel like I've been so unproductive!

We're finally unpacked and more or less settled (thanks to Honey), but my yarn isn't properly organized and perfect yet. I'll need to work on that this weekend. Hubby did get my Edgerydoo table out and ready for action today!

The other day I was able to make this hat while we drove to Fort Wayne. I really like it a lot! The subtle color changes are fun, but not too bold, and I think the hat is cute. It's made with simple hdc all the way through and a rolled sc edge. I was tempted to keep it for myself (it's COLD!), but since I don't have a gray coat, it will go to better use for charity. I think I'll send this one to Roswell Park Cancer Institute.

I've also been working on a name blanket as a Christmas present for my land lord and lady's baby boy. It's going well, but those blankets take me a long time to complete, so I don't get that sense of completion that I get with smaller projects.

Sunday, November 04, 2007
Lots of Firsts!

Today is my great-niece's first birthday!

We went to spend the weekend with her and her family. Yesterday there was a surprise party for her grandma, and today was her birthday party. The parties were both so much fun, and getting to meet this precious little girl and finally spend some time with wonderful!!!

In one photo she is digging into her birthday cake - which she really seemed to thoroughly enjoy!! The next picture is her in a sweater that I made when I first heard that her mommy was pregnant. We didn't know if the baby would be a boy or girl, but I was prepared for a girl - though I never expected her to be quite this adorable!!!

The last picture is her wearing the poncho that I made for her (she wanted nothing to do with the matching hat). She's mesmerized by her singing pizza Elmo - who I must admit is really cute too!

Happy Birthday, Sweetie!! We're looking forwards to seeing you more often now that we live closer!!