Monday, August 31, 2009

prayer shawl

I have another friend who just found that she has cancer. This time it's ovarian cancer, and quite serious. I made a prayer shawl for her - the concept is that you take a simple shawl pattern, make it for someone, and pray for them while you knit, crochet, sew or weave it.

I thought I'd take the opportunity to share my pattern. There are others out there, as well, but this one works for me. I keep skeins of Yarn Bee "Luscious" on hand to make these, because it is so very soft. I use 2 skeins, which are 3.5 oz. and 186 yards each. But any bulky yarn will do. I use size 13 needles, so it works up quickly. The stitch is a simplified feather and fan pattern - have you guessed yet that I'm a bit obsessed with it?

Cast on any multiple of 12 stitches - this one is 48.

Rows 1 and 2 - knit
Row 3 - purl
Row 4 - k2 tog 2x; *k1,yo 4x, k2tog 4x*, repeat instructions between *'s across until last 4 stitches; end k2tog 2x.

Keep knitting till you are almost out of yarn. Bind off loosely. I try to end on one of the "ridges" in the pattern to make it look neat.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Revelation of the day

We attended a karate tournament today. Lizi did quite well, considering it was her first one. Of course, I was very proud of her.

The thing that really struck me about the event, though, was the facility where it was held. It was an elementary school; nothing seemed amiss about the neighborhood, the building seemed well kept, and it was in a nicely wooded area.

But I left feeling so insanely blessed that we are able to homeschool, and that I don't have to leave my girls every day at a place where they are greeted by signs like this (in 2 languages, no less):
and then spend their days quite literally behind bars.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Seen too much of this lately...

An association of men who will not quarrel with one another is a thing which has never yet existed, from the greatest confederacy of nations down to a town meeting or a vestry.

~Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, August 27, 2009

new socks

Just had to show you my new socks! These have to be the most fun socks I've ever owned. They are cotton, just stretchy enough, and very comfortable. A little on the thick side, but they will be just right for winter. And yes, they are meant to be mismatched!

I bought them at Manna in Tuscaloosa, AL, but they are also available directly from I love the infant and child sizes - infants get 5, and children get 3, perfect for mixing and matching (or in case you lose one)!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

kitchen window

My kitchen window has lots of my favorite doodads - it makes for a happy view for me. Betcha didn't know I'm a compulsive collector of bottle tops from Jones Naturals bottles, did you? I like the little pictures.

The little resin heart keychain on the smallest bottle is from Little Black Ants, about a year ago. I love it too much to let it get all beat up in my purse.

The little coffee cup ornament is from my mom, to go with my coffee-themed kitchen.

And I have an aloe plant, because I get burned a lot. My friend gave it to me.

The coke bottle on the left is from the old-fashioned birthday party last year.

And see my trees?

Friday, August 7, 2009

party time!

Well, I think we can call the party a success. It was one of the best attended so far, and it was great to see so many of our family, and friends old and new. First there was fun in the pool:
Then eating - that's chocolate cupcakes with a choice of white, peanut butter or chocolate icing; and 12 candles for Lizi, 4 for Lydia.
Party games? Didn't plan any, but we did have some extra balloons. We put them out in the empty floor space, and of course kids know what to do with them.
And the "un-gift" table - once again, the girls asked guests to bring school supplies to be donated to needy children, instead of gifts.
And here they are, all sorted and ready to go - a pretty good haul! This year we gave the supplies to a teacher friend of ours, who was thrilled. She assures us there are many local children who can use these. Thanks everyone!