You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”

“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.'

You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”

Eleanor Roosevelt



Wednesday, August 27, 2014

A Sample of Love

Back in 1967 when I entered Junior High School, like all 7th grade girls I was required to take Home Economics which at the time consisted of one semester of sewing and one semester of cooking. I couldn't have been happier.  My mother and grandmother both did amazing needlework and I was eager to learn too. Our first project was a cross stitch  "Country Sampler" which read
"Bless This House O Lord We Pray"
and under the watchful and often critical eye of our teacher Miss Bradstreet we learned the fine art of hand embroidery.  Even before my needle hit the fabric I knew that I would make this special sampler for my grandmother and would give it to her for Christmas. I did just that. The gift was received with much love, admiration and appreciation of all the hard work that had gone into it. She loved it and treasured it for many years, displaying it proudly in her home until the day she died nearly 20 years ago.  At that time my mother took down from the wall and gave it to me; she knew I would want it.  Of course I had every intention of cleaning and reframing it "another day".  But by now you know "another day" never came. Instead it stayed packed away out of sight and out of mind. A few weeks ago in search of something else, I  came across the handstitched little sampler. I was surprised  and dismayed to see  how discolored and worn out it had become. It made me sad to see the once cheerful sampler that had brightened my grandmother's home look so dreary. I knew then that this was to be my next project.
 

I carefully cleaned it the best I could using a bar of the old fashioned Fels Napa Laundry Soap and it did wonders. As I gently hand washed the old fabric I recalled my "12 year old self " laboring over the tiny stitches a lifetime ago trying my best to make this gift beautiful.  Only now, through the adult lens can I see how crude and uneven the stitches are. How the back is sloppy, knotted and frayed. Funny how I never saw these imperfections. I had never thought it was poorly made.


My grandmother saw the true beauty though, and to her it
WAS
 perfect.

 

                            






Friday, August 22, 2014

Top Model

Look who is "rockin the booties" that I made! 
 My friend's grand-baby Joliana models her new booties and they are a perfect fit.



This pattern is the best ever and simple to make. They work up quick too! It is one of the few bootie patterns that actually stay on the babies feet.
Welcome Joliana!
NOTE: this bootie pattern is offered for free on
and is intended for charity use. 
Booties are made and donated to families of "at risk babies".
If you decide to use the pattern for your own use,
 please take time 
to make a pair for an infant in need.
I did!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Bootie -Patootie

As the summer winds down I can't help but notice the days becoming shorter, the nights becoming cooler and my stash of unfinished projects getting bigger.  I head back to school in just two weeks and I ask myself; where did the time go and what have I accomplished?  "Not much" is the only honest answer. I have made little leeway in my efforts to finish my orphaned projects. I have lagged in my attempt of slaying  the " BEAST "of procrastination.  Why you ask?  FACE-BOOK!  That's right .... FACE-BOOK; that time eating, social media craze has hooked me but good. I willingly let it waste precious time; time I will never get back. I have spent countless hours perusing family and friend's pictures and status updates when I could have been knitting. I spent precious time looking....or should I say lurking at old friends and yes, old boyfriend's pages when I should have been sewing. I even took up precious time to post my own updates and photos while I set aside project after project for another day. Countless hours wasted.  I should have been finishing the closet full of uncompleted projects, instead you of sitting  with my I-Pad devouring the pages of other people's lives and accomplishments.  I've always had trouble with time management which is exactly why I am in this predicament.
I AM DONE.  
Exactly one week ago I DEACTIVATED my FACE-BOOK  Account and I feel free. I am back on track. I made my way back to "the Closet" and pulled out yet another skein of yarn. I don't know what my original intention was for this soft pink baby yarn but it was put to great use for these "itty bitty" baby girl booties I made for my friend's new born grand-daughter. It was a pattern I have wanted to try for a very long time. 
Mission Accomplished!








Thursday, July 3, 2014

The Bane Of My Existence

The problem with committing to finishing everything I have ever started and left incomplete is that I don't get to start anything new.  (unless of course I drop the old project, start a new one, abandon that one and go back to the old stuff, which now includes the new stuff that I started and didn't finish and so now that is old stuff too......right?  Whew......) Alas, fear not dear followers as all is  not lost on my quest to eradicate procrastination from my life. With the help of this blog and encouragement of friends, I am learning to not "give up" so easily but to fight through the boredom and carry on. Take this blue baby sweater for instance.  I bought the bamboo/cotton blend yarn to use for something else ages ago.  When I heard my friend was going to be a new grandmother I dug it out and began knitting this sweet little sweater. My problems began almost from the first knitted stitch and continued to the last. For starters the pattern was hard to understand, the bamboo yarn was slippery and I dropped stitches along the way. I pulled out and re-knit the blasted thing a million times. To add to the mayhem, many of the stitches split and looked messy and I lost count.  I admit that I tossed the partially knit sweater to the back of the closet a few times happy to forget it. But then I saw my friend. She was so excited about becoming a grandmother and was counting the days until the birth.  Shamed I went home and I finished it, yes finally.. Here it is.
     Now, I know I am a perfectionist about all the wrong things in my life but tell me......
 Does one sleeve look bigger  to you than the other ? 
 Ughhhhh

Happy, Happy, Happy 4th!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Sweet Harper

Remember this little gem? This tiny peach colored sweater waited forever and a day for buttons.I used fine yarn and ridiculously small knitting needles.(which I swore I would never do again.) Well, one thing is for sure, it was worth the wait.  Could anything be sweeter than my friend's grand-daughter  "Harper" wearing  it? She looks adorable and it fits her perfectly, but it won't for long I'm afraid...the good news is I do believe my friend is expecting yet another grand-daughter in early summer.

Maybe a "hand me down" is in store for this 
"finally finished" 
creation.

I hope so!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

What Does The Fox Say?


If you ask my three year old grandson Grant, WHAT DOES THE FOX SAY?  Depending on his mood; he will most likely shake his "bootie" and sing "Ring a ding, ding, ding, ding ,ding a ding ding. His imitation of the Danish pop duo Ylvis is spot on. The lyrics are catchy and he is adorable singing it...a true musical genius.  (At least to us he is.) So of course I had no choice but to make him a fox hat for these chilly Spring days, 'cause that's what I do.  (Some of you will remember the owl hat debacle. He hated it and refused to wear it. It was scratchy and It scared him. I can't say I blame him.) Being the eternal optimist I hoped for better luck with this one.  So back to the stash I went. Thankfully the pile of unused yarn seems to be shrinking a bit since my commitment to finish things.  Low and behold, I found a skein of soft, rust colored yarn. I don't remember now what I bought the yarn for or how long I have had it but it was perfect for this project. Because my grand-son lives in New Hampshire and we are in Massachusetts, I put the hat in the mail. Grant loves to get mail so I knew he'd be thrilled to get the package and he was..... until he saw it, and my daughter asked him to put it on that is. Well, as luck would have it Grant wasn't "in the mood" so like any good mother my daughter bribed him so she could get a picture of him wearing it to show me. And like any good toddler he took the bait.
Here is Grant reluctantly posing for a quick snapshot in exchange for the promised handful of M & Ms.
 I'm told he hasn't put it on since and even down right refuses to wear it.
 Oh well...

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Reliving The Past!

I continue to check things off of my "Finish This list" at a snails pace or even slower. For a long time now I have started each day with my "Week At A Glance" calendar in front of me. I write down what I NEED to accomplish, and things I WANT to accomplish. The following day I check off what I have done and carry over to the next day the tasks I didn't complete This keeps me somewhat organized but I have to admit sometimes I look at the carried over list and change my mind; this is where the eraser comes in handy. I am a big believer of "out of sight, out of mind". One entry though has hounded me for a very long time.    Call Janie, Call Janie, Call Janie, oh for God sakes call Janie already!!!!!    You see, at least three years ago I ran into the daughter of one of my mom's best friend, you guessed it.....Janie.  She told me she had been going through some old photos and that she had come across some great old pictures of my mom and dad that she wanted to show us. She asked me to call her to set up a time that I could bring my mom over and look through the pictures.   Ughhhh, while this is certainly right up my ally I  never found the time or motivation to make the call, until  two weeks ago that is. I called Janie and clearly she was thrilled to hear from me. We set a time for the following Saturday to meet for our long overdue visit. I am so glad I did. What  a wonderful and memorable time we had. We sat at the kitchen table and poured over  picture after picture. In those moments time melted away and my mom was able to relive the " good old days"  with my father and their babies. Most of the photos were taken over 60 years ago. My mom said those years were some of the happiest times of her life. The afternoon flew by and we finally wrapped things up and said our goodbyes with a promise to get together again. I hope we do. My mother is 86 years old now and I treasure each day with her. I took copies of as many photo as I could with my I-pad.
It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words,
surely it is more if you count the unspoken ones
                            hidden in your heart.