Monday, January 31, 2011

New PDF Feature

I have found a great new gadget for my blog that I have to share with you! You can now print or save all my patterns and/or posts for that matter in a pdf file. This is courtesey of You just click on the "PDF ICON"  at the bottom of each post. You can then save the file to your hard drive or just print it out. How neat is that! Please share this information with others in the blogging community. Try it out - see how cool it is. :)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Crafting Poetry - A Poem A Month

I have started a new challenge for this year. As if I haven't started enough already, what with the Block-of-the-Month Club and WIP's and UFO's. I am now joining Sara from Lazy Knits and Purls on a poetry adventure. Each month I will choose a poet and read from their works; then hopefully I shall become inspired to design or to crochet a work of art. Doesn't this sound like fun? I think this will be do-able for me, as poetry is generally short and I don't have much time to read. But I love to read and I do love poetry, so I think this new project is a good match. Sara also has a group started on Ravelry located here: Crafting Poetry. Remember you must be logged in to Ravelry for the link to work.

The poem I chose for January is "Maid of Athens, ere we part" by Lord Byron. It was written in 1810 and dedicated to a young girl of Athens. Each stanza of the poem ends with the same Greek refrain which Byron translated as, "My life, I love you!"

Maid of Athens, ere we part: by Lord Byron

Maid of Athens, ere we part,
Give, oh, give back my heart!
Or, since that has left my breast,
Keep it now, and take the rest!
Hear my vow before I go,
Zoл mou sas agapo.

By those tresses unconfined,
Wooed by each Aegean wind;
By those lids whose jetty fringe
Kiss thy soft cheeks' blooming tinge;
By those wild eyes like the roe,
Zoл mou sas agapo.

By that lip I long to taste;
By that zone-encircled waist;
By all the token-flowers that tell
What words can never speak so well;
By love's alternate joy and woe,
Zoл mou sas agapo.

Maid of Athens! I am gone:
Think of me, sweet! when alone.
Though I fly to Istambol,
Athens holds my heart and soul:
Can I cease to love thee? No!
Zoл mou sas agapo.

In conjunction with this lovely poem, I have crocheted this beautiful 8" square (which I also designed) called Cameo Flower. I could just imagine the lovely maiden giving Lord Byron a cameo of her likeness for him to remember her as they parted ways.  I guess I'm just a romantic.

Won't you join me each month on my Crafting Poetry journey? It will be such fun. And stay tuned to see what I read and craft next month.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Blog Award

What a nice surprise to find that Miss Clara from Clara's Crochet Room has awarded me with the Stylish Blogger Award! Thank you Clara!

Rules are that I have to reveal several fun things about myself:

1. I received the Smile Award in the 5th grade.
2. In the 6th grade, my art project angel was chosen to sit atop the school Christmas tree.
3. My brother and I, who was 13 months older than myself, used to tell people that we were twins - and we got away with it. :)
4. At times, we also told people that we were cousins and that he was just living with our family for a while.
5. When I was a small child I thought I was Chinese because it was reported in the news that every fourth born person in the world was Chinese and I was the fourth born child in my family. Of course my older siblings instigated this plot.
6. When I was a teenager I must have looked older than my years because there were several instances where people thought that I was my baby sister's mother. She is 6 years younger than myself. So we liked to pretend to strangers that we were mother and daughter.
7. In the grocery store, much to my mother's chagrin,  my little sister and I would pretend to speak in a foreign language to each other. It was all jibberish and we got plenty of odd looks.

Now that I've let you in on my creative childhood, I'd like to pass on this award to the following blogs:

Rules for the winners: pick 3-5 blogs you admire and pass on this award linking back to the person who gave you the award (in this case, me). Reveal several fun facts about yourself. Make sure to leave a comment on their blog that they have won. Happy Hooking!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Crafter's Creed

If you knit or crochet - or craft of any nature for that matter -  I'm sure that like me, you have some works in progress (WIP) or unfinished objects (UFO's).  I have several projects that I have been working on and slowly making progress on. I keep saying that eventually I will get around to it and get them done. Don't you say the same thing? How many WIP's and UFO's do you have sitting around the house begging for your attention? Do you even know? When was the last time you took an inventory?

I say, let's start the New Year with a new craft resolution. Let's finish up all those WIP's and UFO's that we have laying around and hiding in the corner of the closet. Get them all out and decide if you really want to finish them. If not, then either frog them and save the yarn for yet another project, or throw it out completely. Don't be squeamish - now is the time for courage! You can do it - just make that decision and stick to it. Keep it, ot toss it - one or the other. If you keep it, you will finish it in 2011. That is your promise to yourself. Right here, right now. Let's recite a Crafter's Creed. Raise your right hand (holding hook or needle), place your left hand over your pattern books, and repeat after me: "I solemnly swear on all things soft and yarny, that I will do my best to work on my poor neglected projects on a consistent basis, giving them all the attention they deserve, and seeing them blossom stitch by stitch to their full fruition in 2011. This I do solemnly swear."

There you have it! Now go forward with hook (or needle) in hand and get busy! Take on your first project and let's help one another this year. My husband and I go to  Yarnorama, our Local Yarn Shop (LYS), on Thursday nights specifically to work on our WIP's and UFO's. We have a whole group who meets there and does the same thing. It's great when you have the support of so many - you get so much done and have a great time also.

My husband really enjoys his knitting time at the LYS. I'm beginning to think it's because of all the attention he gets for being the only male on board. :) He is cute - isn't he? And an excellent knitter. He's in the process of knitting me a sweater. His goal is to finish it by our wedding anniversary on April 1st.

I have one Finished Object (FO) that I've had stashed at the house for the past year now, and I haven't given it away yet. I finally decided what to do with it. It's an afghan made from all my 12" squares that I've designed. If you look closely, you'll see the same squares that are shown as samples in my 12" patterns. After I wrote all those patterns, I had all those squares that I had worked up; so I made them into an afghan. Now I've finally decided to give it to one of my two sisters.

Now to my WIP. I have sixteen 12" squares all done and I need eight more to make another afghan. This afghan will be comprised of squares that I have also designed. These are new designs that have not been published yet, and won't be for some time. I will give this afghan to my other sister. I will number both afghans one and two and then they will draw for it to determine which afghan is theirs. That is the onl;y fair way to give them away I think. Here are the squares so far:

All three of our wedding anniversaries (my sisters and I) are in April, so I thought that would be a great time to gift them each with an afghan. I have one all ready, and one in need of eight more squares, I think that is do-able in 2 1/2 months. I will track my progress for you here. I will hold myself accountable to you. This will give me my motivation. What will motivate you? Find your motivation and then stick with it. Good luck and Happy Hooking!