People who know me well!!

Christmas was so different this year, even from our own little established tradition. Ken and Jenn didn't make it home, but they are every other year, with her family - distance does that. Their gifts came in the mail a day before Christmas Eve.

Instead of decorating the house and having Jim and Andrea (and the 5 kiddos) at our house Christmas Eve, we had to pull out for our winter venture on Christmas Eve morning, so, we filled our little SUV back with packages and headed to their home a few days early. We had a great time, teasing the kids, making them wait awhile for packages, and thoroughly enjoyed each of them with their gifts. Some were on their list and some were random surprises.

Since the tradition was a little unusual, I found myself struggling, I had pulled out 3 decorations to fancy up our craft show a few weeks before Christmas, and hadn't put them away. One was my Christmas tree shape stand that holds plates full of candies and/or cookies. I decided I would do cookies, but we wouldn't or couldn't eat them all, so boxes of cookies were delivered to our favorite Auto Repair shop (he does our tires, brakes, engine work on our used vehicles, and general advice on all of our equipment, he's a super guy and we hoped to bless him.) The hubby delivered the cookies and came home with a Rose for me. I so needed that - was starting to feel a little deprived or something.

At the kids house adults opened their presents. My gifts to our son and d-i-l were a hit, they posed for pictures in their scarves. One woven for our son, knit for our d-i-l.

Then my hubbies gift. I had seen it, and our (almost 3 yr old) granddaughter almost carried it out of it's hiding place a week early when we visited, she couldn't wait for Papaw to see it. A picture of him, holding her, he's about to kiss her on the cheek, she's squinting from the fuzzy beard that's approaching. She's wearing a dress I made here when she first arrived from Guatemala nearly 2 years ago - and holding a doll that has a matching dress The pattern was for an 18 month old, so I made it for her first spring. She just grew into it. The picture is such a treasure it's already hanging in our RV.

I opened my gifts, and was amazed at the thoughtfulness of my d-i-l and son. They went to a yarn shop and picked out a variety of specialty yarns that were over the top amazing. One of them:

This was a little intimidating. Feza Alp Oriental "Bravo" 07 Scarf Kit

Because it is a huge ball of yarn, with several fringe strands attached. The instructions were hand written with a sticky note attached from the store clerks. I tried both scarf patterns and absolutely loved the original pattern. There's probably 20 different yarns in this, two or three yarns wound together, about 16 yards of each color pattern, then the change to 2 or 3 more yarns held together, throughout the piece. Here's a few views of the finished piece wrapped with my denim jacket.

Finished Scarf and close up of some of the fiber.

This is just one of the projects that will come out of the gifts of yarn I received.

The other gift that was so right on with me was a beautiful glass globe hand made from Colorado that had a wildflower bouquet. The center flower was a miniature Daisy. My favorite flower in the world. That's the flowers I had in my wedding, with much strong opinion and dislike floating around ... you don't use daisies for a wedding??? I did!!

There were so many meaningful things happening in our lives and our family's life this year, that the gifts were more like icing on a cake ... we are so blessed and God has been so bountifully good to us in our 42 years for marriage, that just knowing his Grace and Love would have been enough, yet he allowed us to purchase meaningful gifts, receive them too, and spend quality time with family whether it was literally together or over the phone.

I'll close with a sweet memory!

Three Sisters Christmas 1950's


A special Grandparenting Moment, and a few of my knit felt purses ... 2009 grand finale!

The anticipation! Just before pierced ears.

Listening to earring care instructions at the jewelry shop!

When this little lady, Aven Catherine Mundell, came into our lives, we really weren't sure what we were getting into. We had 4 grandsons at the time, and pretty much knew about boys. When her 4 brothers welcomed her into their family she was less than 1 year old, adopted from Guatemala. In just a few weeks she turns 3. We have watched her toddle through every stage of babyhood swinging her runway shoulders, dancing across rooms on her toes in tutus and admiring every piece of jewelry any person wears on any occasion. She grabs the doll hair brush to groom Papaw's beard. Aven has to have a pretty in her hair and is always dressed in frill, lace or at least pink. Only having two sons of our own, and 4 grandsons the transition has captivated us. Our daughter-in-law brought a new element to our family. Having another lady around sparked new creativity and softened the guy inspired decor of our home. Now Aven dances through our hearts causes everyone to pause. She's tender, but strong, sweet but decisive, and loving in a tender quiet way. Standing on the couch next to her Papaw talking him into Dora cartoons and sharing cashews or chips makes her day.

This year's birthdays for all grandkids was a planned adventure rather than gifts. She's still young enough we didn't think she would have a preference, but when we asked her what she wanted to do with Papaw and Mamaw for her birthday, she said she wanted to go to Applebees. (That's where the 7 year olds wanted to go after a day at bouncer town) She loves that word, Applebees. Then we were informed that she's been wanting her ears pierced, and that it would be a great adventure for the 3 of us. I'll admit I was very nervous - what if it hurts her - she'll hate us forever. I wasn't too sure about it, but she and Papaw were so excited. Of course all my fears were erased when she sat right down on the padded stool and listened to everything the piercing lady told us, let her mark purple dots where the earrings would go, picked out beautiful pink flowers off the card of choices, and folded her hands to wait. WOW!!

I'm the only one that cried. She was so cute, so brave, and very excited. A treasured memory for 2009. But I'm pretty emotional when it comes to milestones with my g-kids. (think I'm normal)


I'm currently making myself a sweater. I've never done that. We'll be in the truck a lot over the next few weeks, so I'm geared up for some straight knitting.

On a less glamorous note, my current count of purses this year was over 30. Many sold some were gifts, one entered into a contest, and lots of photos for future patterns. These two I finished for a Christmas order for a friend.

The order stated one in natural colors and one in black both medium size, my design. The picture doesn't do the green, brown tan one much justice. It has a long oval base, and woven strap and closure, with a great green striped stone.


Last minute gift ideas for knitters.

So cute, use some scrap yarn to make two identical wrist warmers. they can be any length from knuckles to wrist or even longer. You don't necessarily need a thumb-hole, and adding finger-holes make them fingerless gloves, not wrist-warmers.

Using a circular needle and two separate balls of yarn you can work each row, switch to the other piece, work the same row on the second piece then turn. You'll be sewing a seam up the sides when finished.

So, cast on enough stitches (according to the yarn's stitch per inch and needles size) enough stitches to fit an average wrist. Make sure you have an even number of stitches.

Example yarn that is 4 stitches/inch on a size 10 needle, you need 32 stitches for an 8 " arm warmer. Cast on 32. For a 6 " arm warmer, cast on 24 stitches, etc. If you get 6 stitches/inch, for an 8 inch arm warmer, cast on 48 stitches. If it is a very stretchy yarn, make back off by one inch so they will stretch onto the arm.
Ribbing (cuff by the knuckles) (right side) Knit 2 purl 2 to the end, turn, wrong side, purl 2 knit 2 and repeat rows until the piece is 3 inches long.

Begin knitting the right side, and purling the wrong side until the piece is about 8 inches from the beginning. Repeat the Ribbing Section, and cast off when they are long enough to warm the wrist.

Change it up! make your cast on divisible by 6 and knit 3, purl 3 using sock yarn. Calculate your stitches the same way using the guide on the yarn.

You be the designer. ENJOY!!


Fibonacci Formula and Ending the International Year of Fiber

This was the International Year of Fiber - I didn't know that till well into the year, but I sure learned a lot about fiber this year, so it had some impact on me.

I'll have to admit I never heard of the formula until I took a weaving class, but now that I've been weaving (and I even apply it to my felting patterns I design), the Fibonacci Formula just makes the finished piece pleasing to the eye, and the patterns just fall into place.

Plus I'm logical in my thinking, if I cannot plan a piece, and know where I'm going with it - I often draw it out on graph paper with color pencils before I start, I use a yellow legal tablet to write out the pattern, I may not follow it, but I plan it...that said, the formula has changed my works. It has kicked it all up a few notches actually.

The formula is adding the previous solution to the new solution, 1,2,3,5,8,13,21,34,56, etc.

8+13=21, etc.

this piece started with 21 Black, then 13 Tan, then 5 Gray, then 8 Tan (2 21's and a 3 for the widest stripe in Black) on the warp face, then as I was weaving with black, the plaid came when I changed colors to match the stripes throughout the piece. Kinda nice when things work according to the plan. Yep, I'm being creative, but when straight lines are expected, it's nice to know how to use the formula.

A current project - ready to block.

My first scarf (made in weaving class using the formula)


What a fun project. I love the twill pattern on the strap. I saw it in my "how-to weave" book and gave it a try. It's so pretty.

I designed this purse from countless purses I've made. The request was for an Aqua Hobo Bag. I embellished with a woven strap and closure, adding a nice turquoise stone. The 2 1/2" rings attach the bag tabs to the bag straps. The woven strap was 4" wide but I chose to sew it under 5/8" on each side lengthwise to give it a little more sturdy shape. The bag is 100% merino wool in teal, held with 25% wool/75% acrilic sea spray. The acrylic didn't felt thus the knobby texture. If you look real close the bag appears to have a watermark as I used a bamboo yarn in Sea Spray really by mistake the colors were exact and the packaging was so close to identical and it was in the same bin as my acrylic wool blend, when it felted I got a darker section 2/3rds up the bag. Didn't even notice the difference in the weight of the yarn while working with it, but the benefit is amazing.

I'd be glad to share the pattern with anyone interested, a knit strap can be sewn to the bag just as easily as a woven one, I just love the mixed media.

Oh yeah!! It is sold.


knit then felt a purse or handbag or computer bag

Just found this blog

A great, simple how-to for felting a bag.

OK - I sold two purses and my Fedora at a Craft Fair yeterday!!

I've finished all my orders for Purses, and I sold two purses and my one and only hat, Fedora, yesterday. The lady who bought my hat had a felted wool hat she's worn for years and wanted to replace it, it looked amazing on her. A grandmother bought the denim sparkle purse for her 23 yr old granddaughter, and my sis bought her "favorite bag ever" the red and navy knit felt stripe drawstring purse that was softly felted with an i-cord handle, made from upcycled (recycled) yarn from Etsy. The lady www.yarnagain.etsy.com buys high end knit sweaters, unravels and sells the recycled yarn.

I'm getting to the place where I'm thinking I like Art and Craft Fairs a lot. I get to know the nicest people, everything is handmade, I get tons of ideas, spend the day with my sister and actually sell items and get orders for more. What more could you bargain for when your craft is something you love?

I'm blessed to have something separate from our "vocation" that gives me purpose. Our ministry is Chaplains to motorcyclists, bikers. We go into motorcycle events, rallies and cross-country runs, build relationships and minister to individual spiritual needs of the riders and vendors. We love what we do, but I also love hand crafting items, I really have the best of both worlds.

Now I'm moving into that time of year where I'll be away from a washing machine until spring. Which is my main tool for felting my bags. I've never used commercial washers to felt, but I may be experimenting with this in the near future. My loom is portable, it folds with a project dressed on it, it's called a workshop loom, which means it can travel!! Yeah!!

My mind is racing with creativity these days, but there is nothing on my needles or my loom. Give it a day!! (I used my sales money to buy - guess - YARN!!)

Craft Fairs are so tiring, setting up - we made several sales getting set up - tearing down, packing things in a place where you can access them and set up easier the next time, etc. I ached so bad last night I thought I had a terminal disease, but recuperated with a good nights sleep and lots of coffee and advil.

HERE'S the link to my blog for the Denim Sparkle purse that sold.

So, I do still have a few items for sale, but I'm not re opening my etsy store because, I'm rethinking etsy. I don't get that many responses to my page, so I may closer er down, make items for about 8 months or so, put them back for a Grand Re-Opening. Then again I may get a longing to start it up again after the 1st of the year. In the meantime, I'm going to knit, felt and weave and do as my son says, video tape it and make how-to videos. He's pretty wise!


Is anyone else like this. Study, Study, Study, finally buy the pattern, then improvise. Bag Style by Pam Allen & Ann Budd

I bought a knitting pattern book.

I'm so guilty of this. I have so many designs in my head for knitting, weaving and crocheting, yet when I see a book that has unique patterns, I almost buy it, put it back, find it on Amazon, eventually buy it, determined to follow the pattern, I dive into the pattern and walla ...
I've designed another something.

I bought this book - Bag Style by Pam Allen and Ann Budd

... finally. I've seen many of the items finished by knitters at my local yarn shop. I started the bag on the front this weekend, changed the yarn, choose a different color, changed the cast on amount, changed the height, changed the strap tabs at the top, wove the strap and forgot the front panel completely. It looks nothing like the picture, but it is so awesome. It is aqua and teal, has a similar base to the picture, but proportionately the bag is wider and not as tall as this. I felted it loose so it hangs more like a hobo bag. The strap is fastened to the bag tabs at the top with 3" metal rings.

Hobo Bag

I don't buy a lot of patterns, because I design bags. My first bag was the CoCo bag from Felted Handbag Workshop - free pattern.

Once I made that bag and several similar - I never looked back. But then I got a loom. Now that I'm learning to weave, I'm seeing all kinds of options for mixed media.

Recalling that I'm not a photographer (especially with my blackberry, oops!!)

I learned this twill pattern from a book!! YEAH!!

Not to mention the polymer clay pieces I'm putting with my finished bags.


All things handmade. Unique gifts for Christmas.

Indiana Handmade Soap $4.00 link to buy here

I have 2 grandsons born in Indiana!!

Made in Southern Rwanda.
Only $28.00 check it out here!
I found this awesome basket online in my search for some unique gifts - no friends and family it has not been purchased, just looking for unique items to share. On my list of things to make some day, handwoven baskets are close to the top.

Awesome purses made from wood pieces $78.00 : web page here
Maybe some day get some wood working done these look awesome

Sweet handmade necklace from Ukraine $25.00 web page link
I have a grandson from Russia!!

Handmade Silk Paper from China see web page here $45.00

I have a grandson from China!!

How about a handwoven wallet from Guatemala,
See link here $14.00

I have a granddaughter from Guatemala.

Just a fun reminder that shopping on line doesn't have to be limited to the normal gifts and the normal on-line stores, go handmade. I found all these by using a search engine. Searching for Unique Handmade gifts.


Thankfulness, Giving Thanks and that "Sacrifice" of Praise, some encouraging words from the Bible in this post.

Well, this is so good. Last week at church part of the teaching was on "Learning" to be content. The scripture about contentment that we're always measuring up to mentally, when we decide to give ourselves a spiritual check-up, nearly always boils down to how am I doing in the faith department, how am I at trusting - with all this chaos around me? The scripture gives an example of a Godly man who is content in prison (imagine the conditions around him in Bible times).

Philippians 4:12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.

Then yesterday I received an email with this encouraging devotion, that was written in 1934 -

PRAISE CHANGES THINGS by Mrs. Chas. E. Cowman ­ November 24, 1934 ... We found that prayer and praise are the two wings that mount the soul upwards to God. Prayer asks, praise takes, or brings the answer.

I fancy that someone is saying right here, "I have prayed, but I do
not feel like praising God. Praise in the valley of the shadow? Praise when my heart is bleeding and torn? Tell me rather to weep! How can I praise God at such a time?" "Sacrifice ... the sacrifice of thanksgiving" is to praise God when you are depressed and despondent, when your life is covered with thick clouds and darkness, for it is acceptable to God, a "sweet smelling savor to your Lord and King."

While we are admonished to
"pray without ceasing," are we not also commanded to "rejoice evermore"? "This is the will of God concerning you." ... Praise has a wonderful lifting power, and we need not be anxious about the outcome of things if we will take the attitude of deliverance and begin to praise. ... Try thanksgiving. Praise changes things. Printed in the Pentecostal Evangel

Hebrews 13:14-16 14For here we do not have an enduring city, but we are looking for the city that is to come.

15Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that confess his name. 16And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.

Not only is contentment something we have to LEARN TO EXPERIENCE, but praising God when we don't feel like it and/or want to, is what pleases God. That's faith my friends, have faith in the midst - not when you got the answer to prayer!! Praise him at all times.

I'm having my own personal revival here ... join me if you like!

Larry and Stephanie you are in my prayers as you face this your first major holiday without your Angel. It wasn't supposed to be like this but God knows and may his sheltering arms carry you this next month as you process His love.


Olive Drab, OD,

Finally put the finishing touches on this bag in Olive, Browns and Tans, the strap is woven on my new loom, still learning, and the button was handmade out of Polymer clay by my sis!!

Too fun. (This one is sold!)


Vintage Sewing Patterns - Cleaning out the stash.

I don't know why or how I end up at the bottom of closets so often. I think I end up in there looking for a specific item that I know if I went to Wal Mart or Jo Ann Fabrics I could buy another one for $2 or $3, but I'm sure I had one (like an embroidery needle or a piece of elastic or a large metal button) whatever notions I need, end up being in one of those sewing storage containers that are never tapped into, unless I'm doing the desperate search to finish a project.

I don't hate sewing, I enjoy it, but I do hate quitting a project in the middle, cleaning up all the mess, tucking it away in a closet and, because it's tucked away, never getting back to the project. If I could leave the mess, work continuous from day-to-day, I'd sew more often, guess I need a sewing room. hm--m-m-m.

The point being, while I was in there looking for a button for a finished purse, I found several 1980's Sewing Patterns for skirts and jackets. I listed them under VINTAGE on Etsy, too weird. I have Vintage items in my closet. I listed a Vintage Macrame' Book awhile back and it sold almost as soon as I listed it.

So, if you're looking at my Etsy shop and see Vintage clothing patterns, don't assume I've flipped my lid, just know I've been in the closet again!



Seriously, they make YARN out of BAMBOO!!

NOPE not really me, just another funny pic I found on-line.

In my many efforts to be stocked up for the winter and in the know of the latest fibers, I discovered Bamboo Yarn, I've been reading about it's durability - it is GREEN (environmentally) and imported from CHINA - should make something for the Grandson from China -
Found a .pdf that talks about bamboo:


Probably weave a few scarves out of this - it's beautiful!! (not this color necessarily)

Mixed Media (Sort OF)

Well, what an adventure so far in 2009. I made a new year's resolution to learn new techniques in my knitting and to be published this year, to enter a knitting competition and kick my skills up a notch. Too fun. Fitting all this in as I travel pretty much "full-time" (meaning I'm gone for months at a time, weeks at a time, then "Home" or back at our campsite, or motel for short periods of time) about half that is on a motorcycle.

So it's incredible what I've accomplished this year. Fit into all I planned, I came in 18th place in a handmade purse competition. Published several youtube videos and learned weaving, including landing a great deal on a used loom on ebay. On top of all that I discovered a friend from my past owns Alpacas, and she taught me to needle felt, and method of felting called fulling or wet felting. So much to do - so little time to blog because my free time is taken up with wool or alpaca yarn. I love fibers.

Now I'm knitting and felting handbags, adding a hand woven purse strap from my loom, out of the same yarn used in the bag, and adding my own (or my sister's) polymer clay buttons or closures to the bags. My goals for 2010? Well, I really want my Etsy store
to take off, so I'm thinking of smaller items to sell like woven cell phone sleeves, computer sleeves, etc. and I plan on really getting good at needle felting or wet felting next year.

I went to my favorite yarn store today after finding out the fiber show I was headed to doesn't start until tonight, bummer, missed it, or maybe can fit it in tomorrow. While I was there one of my fellow weaving students was there, we caught up on the last several months and I looked at her amazing piece on the loom. We talked yarns, looms, purses, etsy, and of course life itself. She's a great lady, had to leave so she could weave (which is why she came in).


Veteran's Day 2009 - Married to a Vet

Veteran's Day is special in this house!

40 years ago my hubby was overseas during the Vietnam War and I was home with our infant son. After he returned home safely, we went on with life, made bad and finally better decisions, had another son, and didn't think a lot about him being a Veteran until the last 10 years or so...

Now as we ride our motorcycles in Run For The Wall annualy, and as we go through daily routine, we are constantly reminded of the results of his willing service to this country. With the country currently at war, we're reminded to pray for our troops. He was honored to serve, he volunteered, yet we had lots of struggles during his service and afterwards. We're thankful for the Veterans Administration, our fellow Veteran friends, and a Nation who honors their heroes.

THANK A VET today, they need to hear "WELCOME HOME" from a grateful heart. War is never popular, but our soldiers should be, because they are heroes!


My hat was returned. 7 Sales on Etsy instead of 8.

Well, several months ago I started listing my items that I handmade on ETSY. It is a neat opportunity to have people from all over the world look at your items. I've purchased several items myself. I've also considered doing the same thing in 1000 Markets, which is also a handmade marketplace.

My Etsy store has pushed me to get better pictures, do better listings and stay current with my knitting and felting items. www.BigSis2.etsy.com

I have some items featured on this blog.

I also am giving away a free 2010 calendar to anyone who wants to go get it on my Google Documents. It's just a click away on this blog or my etsy store.

I have 4 purse orders, so any typing I do keeps me from knitting. I promised myself I wouldn't take any last minute orders for Christmas, so once I finish the orders I have and the ones I've discussed with customers recently, I'm gonna knit several more for my Etsy store. I have 10 items out there right now ... (sold 2 at a craft fair this weekend) Fun Stuff.

Tomorrow we're taking the day to spend with our grandsons who turn 7 next month. Their choice was a movie and eating out, or a bounce house with other games - they chose bouncing, it'll be a great day, they're so entertaining, enthusiastic and easy to please!!



Pictures of my knitting that I FELT like sharing in a 2010 Calendar

I made a calendar for you to print. It is stored on Google Documents. All you have to do is click on this link and click on print when the calendar pulls up.

Each month is on a page, with a to do list. It includes some of my favorite purse and knitting pictures for over the last year. ENJOY!!


My Hat is Being Returned

Well, it sold on Etsy.

She is returning it because it is too large. The description included that it fits a large head and/or big hair. Doggone, she didn't let me know she was returning it before she mailed it. I could've stepped her through fitting it to her head.

When a felted item is too big, put it in a pillow case, tie a knot in the pillow case. Fill the washer with HOTTEST water about half full.

Throw in a pair of jeans that you need to shrink, and the pillowcase with the item. Add a little laundry soap, wash for about 5 minutes. STOP. Open the bag check the item??? Is it smaller??? Does it fit??? Spin the water out, shape it over a rolled up towel and let air dry. THE HAT FITS!

Same steps with purses.


What happened to October 2009? and Cedar Rapids Flood Recovery.

Wow, what a month.

I've hardly touched my needles. I'm about to take a purse off the needles, and I'm carrying a purse that I knit, then wove (on my new loom) the handle for the purse. I used two identical belts and removed their buckles to attach a woven strap. It turned out very nice.

The one I'm knitting now is cammo colors. Brown, tan and olive green, very nice. It's also large.

The month was filled with phone calls to our supporting churches and friends, designing and sending a newsletter, nearly a week with our wonderful grandchildren, and several meetings and church services at a supporting church in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

The area reminds us a lot of Waveland, MS after Katrina hit in 2005. Last June when floods were ravaging our little community of Martinsville, IN, Cedar Rapids, Iowa had the river overflow and destroy so many homes and businesses, it's amazing how well they are doing.

I try to keep my blog current and tell what is going on in our lives, but sometimes it has to take it's place in the background while life carries us.

We are so privileged to serve as missionaries to Bikers, traveling the US, churches in 22 states support us, and the events and church services always offer new friends, people who pray for us and stay in touch to encourage us. We are two very blessed people with an incredibly supportive family. Who could ask for more.


I bought a styrofoam head at Sally to display my Knit Felt Hat! But the Hat sold before I got a picture of it on the display!!

Hey, don't get me wrong, I'm glad I made a sale!! I had communicated with a lady in Canada about my Felted Fedora last month, but never heard from her. Today she emailed - and said it's snowing in Calgary, and bought my hat. (Sold on Etsy www.bigsis2.etsy.com)

You're reading about a "happy camper." That was my first successful felted Fedora Hat!!

Now I'm listing several other items. I'm pleased. Thank you Daria!! Stay Warm.


Email me and I'll send you this FREE Pattern for this purse. Knit and Felt this bag.

This one is my design. Very nice.

Sign up to follow my blog, occasionally I post things of interest about life in general, or the knitting or weaving project I'm in the middle of, or sometimes I just vent ... not real often though.

To receive this free pattern, email me by commenting on this post.

This is a drawstring bag about 11 " high the base is highlighted with a ribbing and trim, the top opening has the same trim effect. The cords pulled tight close the bag. The i-cord I used for the drawstring is sturdy and long enough to carry on a shoulder.

I will email the pattern to anyone who requests it. It is a knit and felt pattern. I made this one out of about 200 yards of red 100% Wool yarn and 300 yards of Blue 100% Wool yarn that was "Up-Cycled" from a designer sweater, I bought the year online from www.yarnagain.etsy.com
my favorite yarn store on Etsy.

I will send the pattern in a .pdf format for you to print and keep.

Super simple, enjoy.


One of My Goals in 2009, GET PUBLISHED!!

Well, again it isn't what I planned, but I did get in a magazine.

Back in January, when I was listing all my goals for 2009, one of them was to be published in a magazine, actually, to have one of my patterns that I've designed published.

Well, today, the hubby was reading a motorcycle magazine and came across a picture of me in the magazine.

I've been published.

I know it's not 100% my goal, but I'm claiming it because this year didn't exactly turn out to be 100% what I planned, so I'm grabbing whatever I can get.

The magazine is: the BMW ON (Owner's News) magazine. I'm in a picture volunteering at the Cyber Cafe - helping people get on-line to catch up on emails at the rally.


Nothing to do with Knitting today. FACEBOOK, My SINGLE Mistake, and a little RANTING TODAY!!

I'm very troubled today.

I was updating my profile on Facebook, when I accidentally rolled my mouse across the "Relationship Status."

I proceeded to fill in some new info on myself, and looked up to see I had erroneously scrolled the Single into the category.

So, glad I had caught the error - leaving it there would put several people who know us into a state of shock!!
I got the error fixed by clicking on the down arrow for that selection field.



In a Relationship
It's Complicated
In an Open Relationship

Here are my additions to the FACEBOOK list:

not telling
none of your business
narrowed down t
o 2 or 3
Now, I realize that I was born in the first half of the previous century ...

but am I the only one that has a problem with these choices.

There was a time when this information was collected on just about every printed form imaginable, resume's, hospital registration forms, applications, school records, loans, yet, there were only 3 choices. Single, Married, or Widowed (or in most cases going way back: Single or Married).

I know, I know, I'm way behind the times, and my Judeo-Christian beliefs are showing, but when did all these options come into play.

Why can't some of these fall into the same category.

Like are you single when you're engaged - or widowed?

Are you married or engaged when "It's Complicated," and does that invite the onslaught of dating services?

Does an Open Relationship mean just that, not married, not single, not engaged, not widowed, not complicated, just OPEN, open to what?

I guess that having lived as long as I have, building trust in a marriage relationship for over 42 years causes me pause to what in the world is happening in America.

Making personal commitments to my spouse, children, and acquaintances to take integrity seriously, with God's help and His strength, I plan to be married until I'm widowed, or Dead! Doesn't that sound like one of the vows we make in the marriage ceremony?

Sure I've made tons of mistakes and there have been many times where I've had to talk it through and been called upon to forgive. There were times that leaving would've been the easiest thing to do, and times when hanging on to the marriage for the sake of ... you fill in the blanks, but working through it solidified not just our relationship but a legacy to leave for those we love, and those who love us. It's been worth all the work. Yep, I'm saying we're in this for ourselves, for each other, and WE ARE IN IT FOR THOSE WHO ARE HOPING BEYOND ALL HOPE that they can make marriage work too. IT IS WORK!! I'm at a place in my life where I've seen enough to be able to evaluate this pretty well. Most marriages fail because one or both of the spouses simply aren't into the work it takes, they'd rather ... again, you fill in the blanks.

Here's the deal. We go to someone Legal, make a bunch of promises, usually, but not always, in a church or religious setting, or at least a judge, we have witnesses and some people sign some papers, repeat some VOWS, file the papers with the state, and start our lives, then we decide ...

The decision becomes, "Do I want to change, compromise my selfishness and be a good spouse, parent, etc. etc. or do I want to stay like I am, selfish, then get everything my way?"

I know, I really do, that there are times when a spouse becomes a louse, and when a relationship ends up being destructive, and everyone has to take a hard look at their options, but I venture to guess that the majority of the "it's complicated," responses come from wanting more - a lack of contentment, or as we old-timers call it "selfishness."

Have I seen the vicious cycle in my 60+ years? Yep, someone caught in that cycle goes to their Facebook account, fills in Relationship Status as "It's Complicated," since the vows aren't really working out, then calls it Single, then probably gets engaged (again) and has to change it again, until one of these spouses dies and finally calls it widowed, ... but eventually it'll be single again, so does this mean the safest way to get off this rediculous roller coaster of relationship is to put "In an Open Relationship" and just forget it?

Then one can be SO OPEN MINDED THEIR BRAINS FALL OUT!! What good are ya without brains?

Sample Wedding Vows:

In the presence of God and these our friends I take thee to be my husband/wife, promising with Divine assistance to be unto thee a loving and faithful husband/wife so long as we both shall live.

I (name), take you (name) to be my (husband/wife), my partner in life and my one true love. I will cherish our union and love you more each day than I did the day before. I will trust you and respect you, laugh with you and cry with you, loving you faithfully through good times and bad, regardless of the obstacles we may face together. I give you my hand, my heart, and my love, from this day forward for as long as we both shall live.


OK so I didn't win the competition, but I won a designer bag!


Ok, so, you submit a designer bag of your own creation to this competition called Bags 2 Riches, which is a fundraiser for sheltering and mentoring homeless people in Indianapolis. Trusted Mentors.

You pay a small fee, fill out an application, give your design a name and submit it, then if your bag is chosen in the top 10 your bag gets to go down the fashion show runway at a huge GALA and the final votes come in and walla!!

I didn't win.

I wasn't even in the top 10, and I don't even know if my bag SOLD at the Gala, but I know I contributed to a wonderful cause, and supported some great volunteers in this effort. Next year - WATCH OUT!

But, I got a call today.

I was a good sport, and knew I missed the top 10, so I voted on a beautiful fabric bag, and GUESS WHAT!!

I won the bag that I voted on. Oh, my goodness, I was just hoping the bag would win, I didn't expect to end up with the bag. Too neat.

I can't see it or lay my hands on it till around March 2010, because it has to travel to California for a photo shoot, and be marketed and shown off and all that stuff, but I'm a winner!!

That's what counts!!


Denim Sparkle - That's the name of this Knit Felt Purse

This is my design. I'm excited about the bases I'm putting on my purses. They stand so nice, on their own. I found this clay star at the Talbot Square Art Show this spring and that was my inspiration. I've made several that are totally different and unique, but this is my first purse with a drawstring. It's cute when the straps are pulled tight.

Yep, this bag is for sale.

Check out the store at www.bigsis2.etsy.com

I added a strap to another one today, but I still need to needle felt as special design on the front.

A Peek at the Bottom "Base" of the purse - clever.

oh, yeah, a pic of the purse (not just parts)

More creations on the way!!


Life In-Between - a Tough Post Today

Sometimes I post about knitting
or weaving
or being creative
or my silly fear of failure.

Sometimes I go a long time without posting at all.

Today I'm posting about "Life In-Between."

In-between projects, daily routine, motorcycle trips, church services, family visits, hooking-up with my sisters or friends.

All that stuff in-between the posts.

Today we're going to a funeral.

That speaks of all that is life! Love, family, pain, hopes, future, disappointments, breathing, eating, sleeping, planning, and sometimes shattered dreams.

Sydney Faye, the grand-daughter of a very special friend, the daughter of a very fine couple, the young man I've known since he was a pre-teen, and has become a great friend as an adult.

His baby girl was hoped for, carried nearly full-term by her sweet Mommy, then stillborn last week. My heart aches, it's so heavy for this couple. I think of all the plans, in their minds, in their home, in the extended family, a future forever altered, their "New Normal" that won't feel Normal for a long time. Friends and family learning how to reach in and touch the pain to ease it.


A song that rolls through my head a lot, one that was sung at my Brother-in-Laws funeral in January, helps me get a grip.

"Blessed be the Name of the Lord, ... He gives and takes away, my heart will choose to say, Blessed be the Name." The scripture is Job 1:21

I'm so thankful I have a God who cares, comforts and makes Himself known in times like these.

We are praying for you Larry and Stephanie, Larry and Linda, Becky and Aaron ... Daniel ... Clayton and Mary Lou ... You are all so special to us.

He Gives, and Takes Away | Christian Music Today

This is a great read the story behind a song.

He Gives, and Takes Away | Christian Music Today

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Sample of my needle felting

I did finally learn needle felting. Thanks to a family friend from my youth - neat reunion!!

The 3-dimensional effect is from using roving (raw wool - dyed of course) and several very sharp needles, with foam behind the fabric.

You poke the wool into your fabric (sounds simple) but you have to be very careful with the needles. Anyway, this is my first needle felting a flower on a bag - it has been in my head for over a year - it's listed on Etsy. It has been completed since August, just finally got good pics! The bag has been finished for about a year and has not sold, hoping the embellishment will kick-up the chances of selling.

You can buy this poster.