Monthly Archives: May 2016

Construction zone

Published / by Mary / 9 Comments on Construction zone

I’m loving the results but I’m so tired of living in a construction zone! The dust, the constant coming and going, the getting up early!!!

I snapped this photo of my cabinets today before they installed the mirror. Love the rectangular sinks. 

The master is done except for some minor touch ups and I had another bath after my walk this evening – loving being able to soak in the tub! The blinds were ordered from and I’m happy with them. They’re private, made for moist environments they’re white which matches the trim (and tub). I’m still waiting for them to install the correct spout – they needed some additional hardware so Abel put a temporary one on so I could use the tub. We’ve been very happy with our choice of contractor even though the process is slower than I’d like. 

They should finish up the tile in the hall bathroom tomorrow. You’ll notice I went with the same choices in both bathrooms. I stress enough about my choices that I didn’t need to go through that twice. I’m glad we decided to remove the tub and just go with a shower in here. If we end up reselling, a) the bathrooms have been remodeled and b) there’s a tub next door in the master bathroom if needed. 

All the items we ordered for the library came today but given that there’s so much construction dust, we decided to leave everything covered/in boxes for now. I can’t wait to get this room set up and ready to use. There’s a rug on the other side of the room just out of the photo – I’m still stressing about some of these choices too so it will be nice when everything is unpacked and unwrapped so I can know if I made the right choices in here too. 

When the bathrooms are done, we’ll talk to the contractor about the kitchen and get an estimate. I’m going to need a break over the summer but I don’t want to wait too long before we tackle that project so maybe late fall?!

I worked on some of the spiral quilting today – I might have mess things up. I didn’t want the spiral to extend beyond the green so I’m doing partial lines to fill in the rest of the green, yellow, and orange before moving on to the “rays”. This one might look better in my head than in reality but we’ll see. 

No more procrastinating

Published / by Mary / 3 Comments on No more procrastinating

I’ve been home a week and I needed to fix the error in my Feather and Fan afghan. I knew if I didn’t get it done, the project would be set aside and end up not being finished.

I had no lifeline in this project so I carefully pulled back past my error and using a much smaller needle, got the stitches back on. It helps to lay it out on a table so the weight of the project doesn’t cause a dropped stitch before I can get it back on the needle. Even with care, a few stitches needed to be redone with a crochet hook. I don’t usually worry so much about the orientation of the stitches as much as just getting them back on the needles. I learned a few years ago that rather than taking a twisted stitch off the needle and reorienting it before knitting it, that it could be knitted through the back loop to untwist it – much easier!

Once the stitches were on the small needle, I was able to knit them back on the project needle, put in a lifeline, and knit up this mess. Whenever possible I like to knit back to the point I had to take out without moving the yarn – it’s much less likely to get tangled. 

Now I’m back in good shape with this project, my new ball of yarn is attached, and I’ll set it aside for now and work on re-pinning the HS top so I can finish quilting the spiral. 

I’ve shared this information before but it bears repeating. I’d been using the JKNitHD app for my knitting patterns but I wanted a way to add notes and to use counters right on the same screen when I’m knitting from a PDF project and neither of those options were available even in the Pro version. Now I’m using Knit Companion and love it. I can even access my Ravelry library directly from the app which is convenient. 

A day for challenges

Published / by Mary / 13 Comments on A day for challenges

This morning I walked for 3 hours – 10 miles – my longest walk since we restarted our training in February. Of course, it took me an hour and a half to clean up and recover so I was late getting to the sewing room. 

I finished the last block for the Bargello, assembled my new chair, pulled out the back leaf on my cabinet and started quilting.

Why didn’t you guys talk me out of quilting a spiral on this top?! Wow, not the easiest thing to do and somewhat wonky especially in the beginning. I’m finding the spiral is pushing my fabric out even though I had it well basted (or so I thought). 

Luckily, it’s pushing it out evenly and I’m going to smooth it out and re-pin. It will be a little close on the bottom of the quilt but I think I have enough batting and backing there to cover the scooting. 

When I planned this quilting I hadn’t bought this machine and it’s been a mixed blessing because this walking foot does not have a guide so I’m having to use the edge of the foot to space my lines which makes them closer than I’d really like not to mention its taking longer. On the other hand at the top of the spiral the entire quilt is under that arm so the extra throat space is very much appreciated! Overall, it looks better than I thought so I’ll continue on – definitely no perfectionist tendencies here!

Just say No

Published / by Mary / 20 Comments on Just say No

I was distracted today by a blog post on weaving. As I wandered around the Internet, following one link after the other I had this idea that weaving tapestries on a small scale would be fun – you know, postcard size. I looked at looms and read reviews but I think I’ve come to my senses. I don’t have time to make all the quilts and knit as much as I want to much less add another crafty thing to my life although I do have lots of yarn around here ….

What other crafts are calling you? 

Big day

Published / by Mary / 8 Comments on Big day

I have a shower door! We can’t use the shower until tomorrow morning but the curtain came down and the glass door was installed today. My bathroom is done except for the installation of the mirror and some minor paint touch ups. The hall bathroom still has a ways to go

My Koala cabinet was also delivered. We need to move the daybed out of this room and into the one across the hall but for now I’ll leave the cabinet here where the design wall usually sits. I’ve got an insert coming for my machine and I can’t wait for it to get here. It’s so much easier to sew with the machine even with the table.

I can pull it out and extend the backing when I’m quilting or leave it folded down when I don’t need the extra support.


For now, I’ve got the design wall propped up in front of the closet but that won’t work for long.


Everything will be a bit of a mess until these bathrooms are done and I can reorganize.


Published / by Mary / 2 Comments on Wollmeise

Mom’s actually knitting up my Wollmeise stash faster than I am right now! She finished her first scarf and I showed her how to bind it off when I was in VA. We got her started on her second one – She’s about to put in a lifeline here.

Now, we’re in the process of picking yarn for the 3rd one. I love this hot pink!

If you want to learn to knit bad enough you CAN learn. Mom is just on her second scarf and already it’s easier for her.

More mistakes

Published / by Mary / 3 Comments on More mistakes

I don’t have a photo but I managed to make a mistake in my feather and fan blanket while we were gone – I’m not good at knitting and talking! Instead of starting something new in the meantime, I pulled out this old, old UFO and knit a little while on it tonight. I’m so used to knitting on circulars that the straight needles were a little awkward to handle. 

When I went to check my database, I realized that I’m piecing a lot more than usual – normally I just have 12-13 new starts all year but I’ve already hit that number and it’s just May. Partly because I’m making smaller ones that can be quilted here in FL. 

I also managed about an hour in the sewing room today and got a couple more blocks made. Tomorrow afternoon my new Koala cabinet will be delivered. I wasn’t quite ready for it as they said it would take 4-6 weeks but I’ll make do – we’re going to move the day bed into the other room but not until they’re finished with the bathrooms and we get the bedroom furniture delivered. 

What is wrong with me?!

Published / by Mary / 26 Comments on What is wrong with me?!

So, I knit this gorgeous scarf that I loved and when I was finished I found a mistake so I stuffed the scarf in a drawer – so disappointed in myself.  You can see my error right?! 

You didn’t see my glaring mistake? Let’s get a little closer. See it?

How about now?! Don’t forget, this scarf will be scrunched up around the recipient’s neck so even more obvious right (not!)

 I kid you not, that small error made me want to cry. I loved knitting this scarf and let that little error, one messed up stitch, crush my pride in making this lovely scarf and had decided there was no way I could gift it with this error. What was I thinking? Sometimes we just have to step away for a little while. I’ll block this and gift it as planned. Maybe next time I won’t be so hard on myself. 

(Isn’t the yarn gorgeous? I love purple!)


Published / by Mary / 3 Comments on Interruptions

I hadn’t counted on having so many interruptions today but there were lots of questions and consultations in both bathrooms. Since I just wanted to sew and not cut, I decided to pull a couple sets of 2.5 inch strips and make a scrappy bargello. I don’t use her instructions but Bonnie Hunter has a free pattern on her site if you’re interested. I’m probably going to make this 4×5 blocks and add a border but we’ll see. 

Tampa’s feeling like home now

Published / by Mary / 4 Comments on Tampa’s feeling like home now

Missing the sunsets and this little one.

However, it’s nice to get home and back into my routine. We’ve been posting our training efforts on a shared photo stream and Maureen and Becky are joining in. 

Mom even got out and walked some with Maureen today!

On the remodeling front, my bathroom is useable now and I’ve already tested the tub and shower. There are still items needing to be completed – no mirror yet, and the glass shower door hasn’t been installed along with a few other minor things but we’re getting there and the hall bathroom is in progress. In addition to my sewing cabinet, we’ve had furniture on order for the library and bedroom and it’s all in early and ready for delivery. We’ve scheduled the library furniture delivery for next Thursday but we’ll have to decide whether or not to wait on the bedroom delivery until the end of the month when we’re done with the bathrooms (or close to done?!). 

Heading home

Published / by Mary / 4 Comments on Heading home

I drove Mom back to my sister’s house yesterday – it was a long drive from Hatteras but worth it I think. Can you tell how much fun Mom was having?! She enjoyed spending time with everyone and these two little girls kept her smiling. Rae’s 2nd cousin Savannah is about a year and 9 months older but they had fun together.

Rae is fearless and had a great time in the pool. She also went on the Jet Ski and kayaking with responsible adults of course!! I would have been hesitant to allow it but her parents aren’t as nervous as I am!

I should be home by 6pm assuming my flights are both on time. I’m looking forward to seeing the progress on the bathroom remodel.

I’d planned to spend tomorrow quilting one of the tops I’d layered but my Koala cabinet is being delivered Monday so I might just start a new top while I’m waiting – if I can decide what to work on – I’ve got a courthouse steps, a rail fence kit,  a 16 patch, and another PLUS quilt on the list so it will probably be one of those.

Part 2

Published / by Mary / 1 Comment on Part 2

Out of order I know but the second part of my trip was taking Mom to see her sister and half brothers. We were there for two days before we headed to Hatteras to meet the rest of the family. I didn’t manage to get a photo of her with my uncle Danny but we did get to see him.