Tuesday, March 23, 2021

A Year in Books - 2020

Normally I try to make these posts a bit fancier, which has caused me to put off posting what books I read last year. Considering it's already almost April, I decided to just forego the reviews and post this as a list for my own personal record keeping. You can also find me on Goodreads in the books tab above. So, these are the books I read in 2020 - some of which I recommend and some I don't, lol. Enjoy.
1. The Body: A Guide for Occupants by Bill Bryson
2. Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
3. Home Work by Julie Andrews
4. The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes
5. The Only Astrology Book You'll Ever Need by Joanna Martine Woolfolk
6. Marry Him by Lori Gottlieb
7. Make Art Where You Are by Courtney Cerruti
8. Radical Compassion by Tara Brach
9. Pandemic by Sonia Shah
10. Conviction by Denise Mina
11. Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport
12. My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh
13. Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead by Olga Tocarczuk
14. Spoonbenders by Daryl Gregory
15. Without You, There Is No Us by Suki Kim
16. You Are Enough by Elaine Welteroth
17. Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata
18. The Island of Sea Women by Lisa See
19. Untamed by Glennon Doyle
20. You Were Born For This by Chani Nicholas
21. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
22. Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
23. Always Look on the Bright Side of Life by Eric Idle
24. Imaginary Friend by Steven Chbosky
25. My Cousin Rachel by Daphne Du Maurier
26. Me & Patsy Kickin' Up Dust by Loretta Lynn
27. The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kid
28. Fool by Christopher Moore
29. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
30. Educated by Tara Westover
31. The Book of Mormon

What did you read this year? Any recommendations? I'm always up for a new book that's good.

Thursday, March 11, 2021

FO: A Birthday Snom

 Well, friends, we're going to reach way back in our minds to last year to October when I made this project. My nephew came to me earlier in the year and asked if I could make him a Snom. After I established what the heck that was (a pokémon, apparently), I started hunting for patterns. Months passed by, but his birthday was at the beginning of November, and since I found a pattern and had an occasion to give him a gift, I decided to make his Snom dreams come true.

It turns out that a Youtuber that my nephew watches has a Snom on a shelf behind them in their videos, so that's why he wanted one. He is also obsessed with PokémonGo, so I figured it would still be a safe bet. Plus this was a cute pattern anyway.
This pattern came from 1UpCrochet and she has a lot of game character inspired patterns. The patterns aren't listed on Ravelry, but I can attest the pattern was easy to follow and well written. Being me and wanting to make it as little work as possible, I made a few little changes. First off - I used safety eyes instead of felt ones just because I had them and didn't want the hassle of felt ones.
The other change was more structural. The pattern has you make an entire pill-shaped body in white, then make the blue outer area as a sleeve, which makes the stomach stay white. I couldn't be bothered with this, lol, so I just made the head in white, made a ridge at the color change and then made the whole body in blue. An 8 year old won't need that level of accuracy. 
I worked from my stash for this project and used I Love This Yarn in Antique White and Red Heart Super Saver in Light Blue. 
Also of note - making, attaching, and stuffing those spikes all over this thing  took just as long as the whole rest of it combined. I was very happy to be finished with putting those things on, for sure. 
Overall, I was pretty pleased with how this turned out and it was nice to be crocheting an animal again after so long. Isn't he cute?!

It also passed the true test - the approval of the new recipient! I'm glad he was happy, and I'm glad I made a toy again. Ever made a Snom for yourself?

Monday, March 1, 2021

New Endeavors

Friends, it has been a while, huh? Life is interesting, and while I've still been making things, I just haven't felt that urge to blog and share. So weird for me, right? I was happy with the little group I had to enjoy my creations with and while I still shared on Instagram ( @showandtellmeg ), I just never could sit down at the computer and blog about it. BUT things have now changed, and I don't have that same outlet I had before in a person that shares my newest interests :/ Which is sad. But it has made me miss blogging and the community it provides. All that is to say - I'm back! I plan on being much more active on the blog now and I will be keeping up with sharing my creations and things I love. I have a back log of things to post that I made last year, but I will be mixing in some new content that has become my obsession lately.

Here is just a small smattering of what I've been up to. With all the craziness of the last year, it pushed me more and more into something I've been low key trying to do for a long time, and that is to be as self sufficient as possible. I now keep chickens and quail and mealworms. I have a garden that is ever expanding. I'm trying out new food preservation and fermentation and making things from scratch in a traditional, highly nutritious way. I've also been very focused on eating a healthy diet to stay well, which feels like the only hope we have with everything going on. I have a lot of posts planned to share my experience with these things as well as where I get my supplies and how I manage to do things on a budget. I'm very excited about blogging my new adventures and I hope you will be too. Don't worry - I will still be posting my other creative pursuits like knitting, sewing, art, baking, etc. I just am in full tilt with this whole project and I look forward to sharing it with others.

Funny how life changes, isn't it? But if we roll with it and adapt, we will be all the better for our experiences. Thanks for joining me on my little section of the internet, and I will be back very soon :)

Saturday, November 7, 2020

FO: Punkin Kitty

When I see an adorable and quick pattern for a holiday that my kids will love, I am sometimes persuaded to jump my usual knitting queue :) This project is one of those.

Anna Hrachovec of Mochimochi Land released a collection called Spookie Ookie Cats at the beginning of October and I just knew I had to make them. My twins are in love with this old school blow form cat coming out of a jack-o-lantern I picked up on the side of the road back in June - they call it Punkin Kitty and they insisted on giving it a hug ever day when we got home during December, lol, it was adorable. So I see a pattern released that has a cat coming out of a jack-o-lantern and I just knew it needed to be made a reality for our house.
The collection of patterns includes this Jack-o-Cat, a Ghostie Cat, an Itchy Witchy Hat Cat, and Guitar Case Cat (which I believe was originally coffin cat, but she changed it). The patterns are all written for sock yarn and size 1 needles, but I knew my 2 and a half year olds would quickly lose something that small. No worries! I just sized up to worsted weight yarn I had on hand and used size 5 needles, which yielded something still small but big enough for them to play with and not lose so easily.
First up was the kitty. I used Vanna's Choice yarn in Black and made him up in about an hour and a half. His eyes and mouth are embroidered on with the Mustard colorway.
I just love the cute little tail, lol.
Once the cat was made, I focused on knitting the pumpkin. I used Red Heart With Love in the Mango colorway for this. The pattern has you knit the whole pumpkin and then embroider the face on. I just used more of the black yarn for the face.
The inside of the pumpkin is lined in Vanna's Choice in Mustard. I just chose all of these from the acrylic yarns I had on hand. I like how this pattern is fully enclosed and smooth inside so I don't have to worry about the girls pulling on any threads when they play with this. The pattern also includes a little lid for the pumpkin, but I knew my kids would just lose it, lol, and it's cute just like it is so I called it good.
So that's the Punkin Kitty! It is super cute to hear my girls say that and I will always remember it when I see this little guy. I had grand plans to make up the Ghostie Cat pattern as well before Halloween, but ya'll I'm a single mom of twin toddlers. It did not happen and I'm not beating myself up about it, lol. This just gives me a new project for next October and we can slowly build up the set. 

I hope you had a Happy Halloween!

Spooky Ookie Cats by Anna Hrachovec
Yarn: Vanna's Choice in Black, Red Heart With Love in Mango, Red Heart Super Saver in Gold
Time: 2.5 hours