Thursday, July 13, 2017

Wanting to lose it all...weight that is!

So summer is here and I've been beating the heat by staying in-doors out of the hot sun and knitting and crocheting away!

I'm back in my crafting groove again. I seemed to have lost it last year and couldn't get motivated enough to look for it again. So I just lounged around eating and binge-watching Kdramas, Cdramas, Jdramas or anything subtitled I guess you could say. In that time I also gained about 15-20 pounds. I was so shocked when I went to my doctor's office and she made me get on the scale. She of course gave me that disappointed look and said, "Stacy, no more fooling around, you have to do something about your weight."

I knew this of course, but I'd been procrastinating about it for a long time, well a very long time. So when my good friend and fellow crafter was raving about this new plan (Take Shape for Life) she was on, my ears perked up, but when she said she bought their food and had to measure any food that wasn't their food, I quickly lost interest. But when four months went by and she was looking totally fabulous (she lost over 30 pounds). I got interested fast.

I talked to my doctor about it first and since my friend and I went to the same doctor I mentioned I was interested in starting the same plan my friend was on, my doctor was all for it. So I went to my friend and she helped me get started. I received my fuelings (that's what they call them) and I started the plan on June 10th. I have been on the plan for more than a month and I've already lost 15 pounds! Yep, you heard me right, 15 pounds. That was better results than I got when I joined weight-watchers over 10 years ago.

So I'm seeing the results and I'm happy with them. I just need to stay on track. I haven't been binge-watching foreign dramas - or at least I limit myself to only 1 hour a day to them and I've been eating my fuelings every 3 hours (5 fuelings per day with 1 evening meal). Basically I eat 5 times a day, about 100 calories per fueling and 1 regular meal of lean meat and vegetables which is about 200-300 calorie and I drink over 100 ounces of water a day. I know that sounds like a lot, but you get used to it and when I don't drink at least that much, I start to crave water - basically your body gets used to it and will want it regularly.

So knitting and crocheting has been keeping me busy so that I don't think about eating things I shouldn't and since I signed up and committed to two farmers markets this year, I'm very busy getting inventory ready for my booth. And when I'm working I don't think about food, I'm so busy I had to set an alarm on my phone for every 3 hours to remind me to eat!

Here are some of the items I've gotten done so far:

Ahh Spa Slippers, designed by Kris Krafter
These crochet slippers will make stocking stuffers this holiday season for everyone you know. They are so quick and easy to make. I can get one pair done in about 2 hours, or two episodes of a good one-hour show (Stitchers - interesting TV show about a woman who gets stitched into the minds of dead people). It sounded like a good show and surprisingly it wasn't about knitting, crocheting, or sewing (LOL).

Giraffe pacifier clips using the Giraffe Bookmark
designed by Ashlea Konecny

Froggie pacifier clip using the Frog Bookmark
designed by Ashlea Konecny

Ladybug pacifier clip using the Spot the Ladybird
designed by Susan Yeates
Bunny pacifier clip using the Rammelear Konjin Snuf
designed by Stip & Haak
These crochet little guys will be perfect for the baby in your life that loves their binky (pacifier). 

Teddy Bear Rattle Teething Ring,
 Rammelear Beer Bram
designed by Stip & Haak

Bunny Rattle Teething Ring,
Rammelear Konjin Snuf
designed by Stip & Haak
Any baby will have loads of fun with these crochet rattles that double as a teething ring as well.

F-Bombs designed by Jenifer Spock-Rank
Do you often drop the f-bomb, well now you can without saying a word, with one of these cute little knitted bombs. Or drop one of these on a friend or co-worker who says or does something stupid. These are great for a gag gift or white elephant gift this holiday season.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Farmers Markets Drawing Closer

I'm getting excited, I'm back in my local farmers' markets again this year! I will be at the Kent Farmers' Market in August and the Auburn Farmers' Market in September. I've changed up my inventory from the last time I participated in these markets (2012 and 2013). This time around my focus is on smaller wearables, baby items and toy-like items. Items such as pacifier clips, baby blocks, stuffed toys, keychains, frisbees, hacky sacks, slippers, re-usable market bags, water bottle totes, etc.

I've been working like crazy fulfilling orders and trying to build inventory for the markets at the same time. It's hard but I'm having a lot of fun along the way because every item I make for babies I think of my new grandson who will also be here very soon (August) and I can't wait to meet him. Each baby item I make I think, my little grand baby needs this and he will love that. My son has already put in an order for a tiger teething ring rattle and a Benny the Bull (Chicago Bulls) pacifier clip. I have to design the pacifier clip myself because I don't think I can find a crochet pattern for a bull (but you never know, maybe with a little search on Pinterest or Ravelry, I will)!

Well I did a search on Ravelry and low-and-behold I found a pattern for a bull/ox and I will modify it to make him look like Benny the Bull, of which there are many versions of Benny to choose from, so I will be working on that soon.

Here is a sneak peak at what I've done so far to get ready for this year's farmers' markets:

Rattle Teething Rings (Tiger & Koala)

Teddy Bear Key Chains

0-3 mos headbands

Giraffe Pacifier Clip

Football Key Chains

Ladybug Pacifier Clip

These are just a few of the types of items I will have. I hope to see you at the markets. Happy Summer Solstice! And happy knitting and crocheting.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

I'm going to be a grandma!

I am 46 years old and my 21 year old son broke the news to me a few months ago that his girlfriend is pregnant. I was a little apprehensive at first, because I felt that they were both too young, but it wasn't my decision and they have to live with whatever decision they make. I can only support them as much as I can and be there when they need me.

I have to admit the idea of being a grandma has grown on me quite a bit. It's actually pretty exciting. I can't wait for my little grand baby to get here. They found out last month that it's a boy and he is due to arrive in August!

I've told the kids that I don't want to be called Grandma, that I'd prefer be called Mimi (it's what my son called me when he was little). I'm looking forward to being a Mimi, When I think about it I get this happy feeling bubbling up inside me and I smile that secret smile of all grandmothers!

The best part of being a grandma is all the knitted or crochet items I can make for my grandson that I didn't get to make for my son (because I didn't know how to knit back then and my crochet skills were no where near what they are today). He will have so many cute items from his Knitter Mama Mimi that his parents will get sick of them!!!!

I already have a teddy bear that I made a few years ago (I told myself I was saving this for my grand baby when I made it - who knew I would be giving it so soon.):


And he will of course have hats and booties. I just discovered how to make crochet rattles. I have a kit that I can make my own teething rings and pacifier clips. He will also of course get a baby blanket from his Mi Mi - it's my specialty, like the one I made for a friend who had her baby in February:

Monogrammed Baby Blanket
My son already put in a request for a baby blanket with the baby's first initial (J for Jermaine). Of course I am happy to make this - he is my grandson after all and he deserves it.

I read an article on the "Do's and Don'ts for First Time Grandmas", I want to make sure that I don't overstep my bounds with my son and his girlfriend. I don't want to be alienated from them and not get to spend time with my new grand baby. I already feel like I should tell them everything I learned along the way - what I did right and even what I did wrong. I didn't have my mom there to help me when my son was born so it was hard being a single parent with only a small support group (my Dad, my brother, and his paternal grandmother). But I made it and my son is no worse for wear!

I'd love to hear from some grandma's out there and how they love being a grandma and for this first time grandma I could really use some tips to help me along the way!

Happy Knitting!!!


Monday, May 1, 2017

Summer is almost here, what are you knitting?

Now that the warm weather is getting here, many of us knitters put away the wools and wool blends and change over to the cottons and cotton blends to create lighter weight garments and accessories. What are some of the items you like to make during the warmer months?

Me I am getting ready for the my local Farmers Markets. I'm making a wide range of new items and bringing back some of my popular items to sell at the Kent Farmers Market in August and the Auburn International Farmers Market in September.

I'm looking forward to these markets once again. I took a long hiatus from doing summer shows and now I'm back. I've decided to do more items that are geared for the warmer weather, such as baby items in cotton (sun hats and booties), hair/headbands, felted dryer balls, market bags, bottle totes, cotton frisbees, hacky sacks, assorted key chains, baby rattles and bibs, pacifier clips, i-cord bracelets, potholders and dishcloth sets, cup cozies, pocket slippers, kitchen/bath scrubbers, swiffer covers, and baby blocks.

Here are some of my items that I've made so far:

Owl rattles
Crochet hair/headbands
Owl key chain
Froggie key chain

Football key chain

Owl key chain
Bunny rattle
Cotton frisbees
Hacky sacks
Felted Dryer Balls

Monster Softees

Pacifier clip
Share some of your warmer weather items I'd love to hear from you and happy knitting!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

On the Yarn Train to Portland

Up at 3:30 a.m. to be on time to my friend Keisha's house by 5:15 a.m., so that we can get the bus to the light rail to downtown Seattle King Street Station, so that we can catch the Amtrak Yarn Train to Portland.

This was my first foray on the yarn train and my trusty navigating sidekick was with me (Keisha - who I don't know what I would have done without her) so I knew I was going to have a good day.

We arrived at King Street station and ran into knit-buddy Carrie and her friends who were also taking the 7:25 a.m. train to Portland - FUN TIMES!

At the King Street Station with some friends (me in the middle)
After arriving in Portland (Union Station), Keisha mapped out our travel for the day. And off we went.

First stop was Northwest Wools. Nice little shop and I bee-lined it to the big display of Madelintosh - I didn't buy any but it was nice to just feel the softness of the yarn and see all the beautiful colors. I did end up buying some Cascade Ultra Pima Cotton in red and orange and a discounted notions bag by the Knitting Bee.


Next stop, Pearl Fiber Arts. Really liked this shop, ended up buying some Cotton Classic Lite from Tahki Yarns in white for the penguin bag charm/keychains I'm making.

Lion Brand Amigurumi Penguin
Next stop, Knit Purl. I bought a new knitting bag, which I love, but it was more out of necessity than wanting a new bag - the bag I brought along to carry my belongings was on the verge of ripping, so new Knit Purl bag it is! Also, here I was eyeing this really beautiful yarn that was super soft (Alpha B Yarn - Sexy B) I didn't see any colors that I was in love with, so I noted the yarn and decided I would maybe buy some at a later date.


Last stop, Dublin Bay Knitting Company. I talked myself out of buying the Cascade Superwash that was going to use for a gift for my brother and his wife who are having twins. I really liked this shop. It was very quaint and I really loved their displays.

We made it to 4 out of the 7 shops on the tour, because I was just too pooped to go any further, so we went to Powell's Books instead. And this is what I call a bookstore, we didn't spend too much time here because we wanted to make sure we made it back in time to catch the 6:50 p.m. train home.

So on our way back to the train station we thought we would stop for some doughnuts - Voodoo Doughnuts of course!

Me (left) and Keisha (right)
But after seeing how long the line was we decided it probably wasn't a good idea, we didn't want to miss our train. We walked back to the train station and settled on ice-cream instead, yes I know, not the same as a Voodoo Doughnut but what could we do. No sooner did we sit down to enjoy our ice-cream, we both received a text message on our phones that the 6:50 p.m. train was delayed to 7:30 p.m.! We were so upset, we could have totally waited in the line at Voodoo and got a doughnut instead - Oh well maybe next time!

Our train left and we headed home - I didn't reach my lovely bed until 1:30 a.m. Sunday morning! All-in-all a great trip, I can't wait to do it again next year....with my trusty navigator Keisha of course.