Sunday, August 25, 2013

Bata Blanket #2

Yes, I am making the Marble Baby Throw from Lion Brand Yarn again.  This time for Vince's sister, who is having a boy.  I have made it twice now, they are listed below:
I named these blankets for the language of the recipients.  Bebe for my girlfriend who has Spanish spoken in her house and Bata for my Filipino boyfriend, whose these blankets went/will go to his Filipino friend and sister.  Bebe and Bata mean baby.

I am using the same yarn I used for the Bata Blanket: Berroco Comfort (50% Cotton, 50% Acrylic).  The colors I chose this time are Seedling (green) and Coffeeberry Heather (dark brown).

I checked out her gift registry and she had lime green and dark brown bedding as her color theme.  So, I did my best, even though Seedling is a bit darker than the lime green of the bedding.

I am crocheting, mainly at night, while TV watching.  But during the week, it is hard to have more than 30 minutes to work on it, so I have been reading.  I am crocheting the bulk of it on the weekends.  I have to finish by the beginning of September, for she is due September 12. Plenty of time.

Famous last words....

It is more than half complete.  This blanket takes a total of 4 skeins of yarn.  Since it is only 2 colors, 2 skeins each of Comfort color.  I am on my second set of skeins = more than half done.

In search of some natural lighting and background, I may have chosen poorly because the bushes are almost camouflaging the blanket!  You get the idea and this picture accurately portrays the colors of the yarn.

Think of this pattern as one big Granny Square.  I love how it is so easy. 
I have a feeling that this will not be the last Marbled Baby throw I crochet this year.  There is always someone having a baby and off the top of my head I can think of two women I know that I could crochet this for.  So much for knitting for myself...better warm up the crochet hook.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Palm Scrap Afghan

I think I have more unfinished projects right now than I have ever had in my life.  I am not even going to count them, I'm embarrassed!  Today I am writing to show off my newest project:

Palm Scrap Afghan
This project is an idea from a pullover/tunic project found in a new magazine I bought at my LYS.  The magazine is Interweave Crochet, Summer 2013:
Interweave Crochet Summer 2013
This issue has tons of cute things!  My gosh, I wish I had more time for crafts!  Anyway, back to my idea.  Thumbing through the magazine, there is a pattern Palm Tunic that I love love.  Here is a pic:
Palm Tunic

You crochet each triangle motif separately, but as you do your last set of stitches around the triangle motif, you connect it to the motif you crocheted before it...makes less ends to weave in.
I got this idea to do these motifs but make a scrap afghan out of it.  It will be eclectic, no doubt.  I started off with the blue yarn first.  Then added the light purple yarn.
I mainly started it just to see if I can read a pattern and actually crochet something that looks hard.  Although, it is a bit tight and the center part puckers...I am really liking it.
I added a few more a few weeks ago:
I do need more dark colors.  I am a very pink yarn collector, I have a ton of it, actually.  Which is why I want to use up the scraps so I can buy more yarn and be to justify it with a straight face.
My favorite motif is the darker pink one on the left.  It is a cotton/silk blend.  The stitches pop out more with this yarn.  I have a decent amount of this yarn left, but I have to save it to spread it out.  Mix it up a bit.
It has been awhile since I made a motif, it will be like learning the stitches all over again.  But it takes a good 30-40 min just to crochet one, so I don't know when this will actually get done.  I will just chip away at it as the days go by. 

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Books - Quarter 3 - Part 1

Wow, we are in the home stretch of the year right now.  Unbelievable.  I actually got through a few more books than expected, so I am going to split Quarter 3 Books into two separate posts.  Here are the ones I have read so far:

3. This was an engrossing scientific novel, typical from Michael Crichton.  He takes the concept of shrinking machines down to micro level and takes it one step further and shrinks people (scientists) down to micro level.  A lab in Hawaii has engineered this technology and they are recruiting.  A leader int he recruiting group is involved in a boat explosion and it appears he has died, but it is too suspicious and the scientists try to figure out this whodunnit.  During this time, the scientists are dubbed into the shrinking room and get shrunk.  This is not an accident and they are then transported to a forest where they are forced to fend for themselves against an insect world where Mother Nature rules.  It is very interesting to see the brutality of the insect world and what the scientists had to do to defend themselves.  Their goal is to get back to the shrink room in the lab and reverse the effects.  That was not going to be easy.  Great scientific spin on a classic theme.

4. This novel is a suspense mystery that I got into right in the first page.  A former detective, Elena, is living her life in solitude to atone for a drug bust gone bad in the past.  Her actions caused the death of another detective working on the case.  She had decided after her own medical rehabilitation, she was going to lay low and work at a prestigious horse stable in West Palm Beach, FL.  She had ties there and knew that she could remain hidden there, until a young girl seeks out her detective skills to help find her missing sister.  The older sister worked at another stable and unexpectedly quit and moved to Ocala.  After an internal battle with her inner demons, Elena takes on the case, even though she no longer has a police badge or a PI license.  She finds out more than the actual cops in the county.  The story revolves around the horse show trade, where horses are worth hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars and what people will do to ensure they win and stay the best.  All of the characters come to life and tell a story that is riveting and full of lies, deceit and a plan gone bad.

 5. This book is a book that I have had for awhile and believe it or not, I have a signed copy!  When Janet Evanovich published this book, she promoted by doing a book signing tour.  She was going through Boston and I got my friends Kj and Fatima to go and stand in line and wait forever to get me a signed copy.  It was awesome, I think Fatima may even have gotten a pic with Janet.  Anyway, I'm a fan of the Stephanie Plum series and am really behind in reading them.  Ms. Plum is now on her 19th numbered book and I think my last one was 10.  Got to catch up!  So I got my Plum fix by reading a "between-the-numbers" novella which was a super fast read.  It was cute and she is somewhat getting better at this bounty hunter thing she is trying really hard at to make a living with.  This took place around Valentine's Day where in order for her to get the skip, she had to play match-maker in time for Valentine's Day.  As usual, Stephanie evoked a chuckle or two from me while she was running around the 'Burg with Diesel.

 6.  This adolescent novel was one that I read in elementary school, I believe.  I came across this book at either a used book store or a yard sale.  I was feeling nostalgic, so I decided to buy it, not really knowing when I would get around to reading it.  As I was reading it, I really do not recall one thing from it, which strikes me as odd, because I was so compelled to buy it.  The title alludes to a summertime romance, but in actuality, it is about sibling rivalry with the title coming from a quote in the bible, "Jacob have I loved, Esau have I hated."  Here are twin sisters, Louise and Caroline.  Caroline is painted as the perfect child, talented in music, beautiful and intelligent.  Louise is her older sister by mere seconds and has felt in Caroline's shadow ever since that moment.  Louise has held in her feelings of anger over Caroline seizing all of the attention for years.  This is Louise's struggle to find who she is and what her true calling is despite her bitterness .  I loved reading this book in which my heart went out to Louise on all the occasions that she felt wronged, down to her childhood friend falling for Caroline and not herself.  Although Louise never allows herself unity with Caroline, she is able to capture the life she was meant to lead.  

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