Friday, July 30, 2010

Happy Birthday, Mom

She would have been 85 today. I still miss her as much now as I did when she died 7 years ago.

You still live in my heart, Mom. We'll see you again someday.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Dog Vs. Yarn

Both my Westies have the same habit-when I am knitting and my yarn is hanging down, they love to walk under it, letting it run along their backs. It must feel good.

The other day, I was knitting at my computer (blogging and knitting-the ultimate in multitasking) and Merlin was behind the recliner next to me. Suddenly a grasshopper coughed or something and Merlin flew out from behind the chair, under my yarn-couldn't leave that step out, and up on the back of the chair in the picture window. He immediately had my yarn securely tangled-around his neck, in his radio collar, around his feet. I grabbed him and the yarn, but he kept getting away and turning in circles, barking frantically the whole time. Every now and then he'd try to take off, but I did have hold of the yarn and he'd go back up on the chair, still turning circles and barking.

Of course I got the giggles, but I was concerned that I wouldn't get him loose before he got hurt. Finally, I got him to stand still long enough to untangle, but oh, what a circus!

I was knitting hats with a triple strand of yarn at the time, so the mess was even bigger:

Here they are, hanging out waiting for something else to bark at. Merlin's Radio Fence collar has done a number on my window sill. We're going to do some rearranging soon, so we can keep the barking machines out of the window and redo the sill. Wish us luck!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Road Trip

Well, Hubs had a coupon from Harbor Freight burning a hole in his pocket, so I grabbed my Hancock Fabrics flier and we hopped in the car and headed to Billings.

From Belgrade to Billings is enough time to get this much of a sock done:

This is sock number two of a pair. It's a Christmas gift-and I can't say who it's for but suffice to say I had to make the foot extra long to accommodate a size 13 shoe.

We haven't been to Billings since the tornado on Father's day, so I was sure to get some pics of the damage to the Metra:

Breaks my heart, but they are doing a great job of accommodating the acts they had lined up for the season. They set up tents for the Antiques Road Show, and moved Celtic Woman to Bozeman. (Yay!) It was the strangest thing-the tornado picked and chose what it tore up. The rest of the Metra grounds are untouched. The businesses north of the Metra were hit in the same way-some places destroyed and some didn't even have windows broken. I guess this is our welcome to the world of tornadoes-something Montana rarely sees.

My sis says all her cars sustained severe hail damage and they had to re-roof their house.

Anyway, Hubs got his tools and in return he had to wait for me to pick out some fabric at Hancock. Oh-here's a plug for Hancock Fabrics: I'm not crazy about Jo-Ann's because of all the fragrances they have. There's tons of candles, potpourri, you name it. I commented to the lady at Hancock that I noticed they didn't have those fragrances and she said it is a store policy not to have all that "crafty" stuff. It wouldn't pay anyway, since Hobby Lobby is right next door, but I thoroughly appreciate not having an asthma attack just shopping for fabric. I was in our mall the day before and it took hours before I could breath clearly again!

This is the fabric I bought. The three on the left are Lycra for some dressy T's and the other is a sueded polyester for a nice shirt. If you look closely in the upper left hand of the picture you can see a packet of sewing machine needles. I had a coupon, and my rule is-if you can't find something to use the coupon on, always buy needles.

This piece is what I bought in Mazatlan-also a Lycra. I got two meters-my Spanish hasn't developed to fractions yet, so I just got an even amount. I love these for tops and you can't usually find much Lycra in the States, but the Mexican fabric stores are full of it. Gonna have to take an empty suitcase one of these times. Their fabric is CHEAP!

Oh yeah-I got something at Harbor Freight. I got a hand held laser thermometer that you just point and shoot and it gives an accurate temp reading. Last time I got a ton of microfiber cloths that I have ambitious plans of making into Swiffer mop heads. Don't tell Hubs I like that store-gotta use the guilt factor whenever you can!

Monday, July 12, 2010


Here, finally, is my post about my new pants pattern. My old pattern had kind of a tapered leg, which wasn't terribly stylish and I thought it made me look a bit frumpy. Off to Jo-Ann's and the pattern sales.

This is my old homemade pattern:

Here is the pattern I selected:

The only problem is that I am, in the words of author Peg Bracken, a "round bottomed pants stretcher." Zippers and I don't like each other-they bubble over my fat tummy, and depending on the day they might have a tendency to bind around my hipbones. So I selected View C-straight leg-and proceeded to revamp the pattern. You can kind of see it on the bottom right.

First I took my measurements and selected the closest size. (No, I'm not telling!) Then I measured my crotch and added a bit of length, since I have a terribly high waist.

Then I added an elastic casing and took out the taper from waist to hip-so it would pull on easily. I had to add room in the hip, just so I could have a bit more "sit room."

And-all my 5' 4" height is in my legs, so I added a couple of inches to the length.

My "muslin" was a piece of crinkle cotton. Turned out to fit perfectly and will be very wearable for summer.

Then I dug in my stash and made two more pair!

I'm definitely liking the cut of the leg!

Monday, July 5, 2010


I got three hanging pots for Mother's Day-one from Hubs, and one each from my oldest and youngest sons. They are flourishing. This is the one I picked out with my sweet hubby.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

When I Was Young, We Called Them Pedal Pushers

Of course now they're called capris. We had capris too, but they were almost ankle length where the pedal pushers were just below the knee. Now they lump them all together in the same category.

I am glad they are back in style. I hate shorts-it comes from fat thighs in hot weather, chafing and other ugly subjects. The only time I wear shorts is on the beach, for more sun exposure and to keep my clothes dry when I dip my toes in the water.

Anyhooo-my capris were wearing out, time to make some more. One day I was looking in my closet and I noticed a few pairs of pants hanging there that I never wear, not because there was much wrong with them but I just didn't like ME in them. "Hey," I said to myself, "Why not cut the bottoms off and make capris out of them? That way they get some use and you only have to make more pants, which you need anyway."

I agreed with myself and promptly dragged out a couple pair. The red pants-well a chubby lady in red pants is just wrong! They're OK for bumming around, but not for dress. The navy ones fit nicely and I liked them, but they were about an inch too short. Measuring error on my part.

An hour in the sewing room and I am the proud owner of two nice pairs of capris.

I made some nice vents on the sides.

You notice the ancient sewing machine cabinet? My hubby bought the cabinet and a top-of-the-line Viking on my birthday the year we got married-in 1968. I still have the machine but I have a Viking 500 that I bought about 14 years ago, and it has taken over the cabinet. Some thinks you can't let go of-it's full of scrapes and gouges but it is well loved.

Today I developed a new pants pattern. I'll blog about that in the next day or so.

Have a great 4th!