Grommets, i-cords and findings. And contentment.

Today I finished the final details on 4 purses. (It's the finishing touch that I usually put off until a deadline - now I have one.) The "Findings" the pendants, or stones or final touch jewelry that I add to each piece, usually is the first piece I start with, and then I make the bag. I mean we find some awesome stones as we travel, and I'm always looking at old jewelry for purse inspiration.

I knit one in color blocks a heathered teal and golden wheat, very cute combination of colors.

I fastened the cord to a vase shaped purse, a miniature of my market bag, and hung a high dollar stone on the front for a sweet finish. It is in natural earth and purples, so it is dark, but tailored, almost looks like a tabletop decoration with handles.

A soft baby blue and mesa tan stripe bag ended up with wooden beaded handles, this one is a unique shape also.

And one of my favorites to make is one I call "neopolitan meltdown." the colors literally look like a bowl of neopolitan ice cream (strawberry, chocolate, and vanilla) stirred into stripes, it is delicious.

I'm displaying (AND/OR SELLING) them plus my soft mauve large purse, and southwest inspired computer bag at the Mt. Olive Women's Retreat this weekend. I've also put together 4 kits to make your own bag, which includes all the necessary yarn, the needles, grommets, and a pillow case to use in the felting process, and a free on-line pattern that I enjoyed working with when I was learning, now I embellish my stuff so much they don't look like the original.

I've met a lot of my goals for knitting this year, and I've succombed to some "Life In-Between Delays." But, I titled my blog, 3 knitting sisters, and life inbetween for a reason. Life has it's way of interupting the great plans of man. (woman)

I read the neatest devotion today, cannot get it off my mind, maybe it is for one of my readers.

"The present moment, this burning instant of time, was all that I or any man could ever really possess or command - and I was allowing it to be ruined by anxieties of my own making. It came to me powerfully, that if I could be content at this moment, I could be content." Grayson (Found clipped to pages of his Bible.)

My mother recently gave me her mother's Bible. My maternal grandmother was my favorite person in the world the 39 years I knew her. Inside the Bible were several hand written notes. Lots of little reminders that God loved "even her." She overcame a lot of trials in her lifetime. Gave birth to 11 babies, only 5 survived to adulthood. The father of all her children left after the birth of her 11th child, she made every attempt to make it on her own, and did quite well, I'd say from my perspective.

I spent my 16th summer with her, traveling the state of Illinois helping her present Pomeranians to County Fair Prize recipients. She raised prize Pomeranians and sold them all over the mid-west. She taught me many crafts, cooking, gardening, small farm animals, and we had lots of real simple times, reading together sitting on the swing watching the summer sunset.

In that Bible I found a poem. It wasn't just any poem. It was a poem I discovered in 1978 and asked my hubby to put to music as soon as I found it. He has been known to sing it on occasion to this day. I had no idea MY GRANDMOTHER Geneva Pryor, carried that poem in her Bible. Here it is:


My life is but a weaving between my Lord and me,
I cannot choose the colors He worketh steadily.

Oft times He weaveth sorrow, and I in foolish pride
forget He sees the upper but I the under side.

Not till the loom is silent and the shuttles cease to fly,
shall God unroll the canvas and explain the reason why.

The dark threads are as needed in the Weaver's skillful hand,
as threads of gold and silver in the pattern life has planned.

Wonder if this is why I signed up for a WEAVING CLASS today!! It starts this summer.


Made a second purse over the weekend.

This purse is about 10" wide at the base and is shaped like a widebottom Vase - really. It comes up to a narrow opening, it is in Navy, lavender, brown, mesa tan and black stripes. It will be super cute, it's small but functional. Picture to come, if the sun is out tomorrow, I'll get some going.


I've finished another knitted felted purse.

This last purse I made with an oval base in a solid color, then I started up the sides with a circular needle in Soy Wool Stripes, the colors are light blue, shades of blue, mesa tan and shades of tan. The handles are wooden Beads on a wire shaped handle, attached with "belt loops" It is about 12" wide at the top and 8" wide at the base, about 10" high, so adorable. The natural colored wooden handles bring out the tan in the stripes. Pictures to come.
I have one computer bag and 4 purses ready to sell. They are going to the Mt.Olive Lutheran Church's Spring Ladies Retreat called "going green for God." I'm doing a workshop on my knit wool bags, and I'm excited to meet the ladies. I met two of them at an art/craft show at Christmas time, and was invited to set up at their retreat.

I'd love to knit something this tiny.
I'm hoping to finish several more projects in the next 7 days for demonstration (and for sale). My Etsy store http://www.etsy.bigsis2.com/ closes for vacation on April 30th, until mid-June. Gotta make more stuff, and will be traveling 6 weeks.

Knitting and Brainpower

Knitting brainpower stitch by stitch

reprinted from the net....

At the Waldorf School, boys and girls from kindergarten through fifth grade scrutinize their knitting, crocheting and sewing projects like students elsewhere might examine computer programs or graphing calculators.
By Anya Sostek, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Melanie Pickens picks up a coaster-sized circle of deep purple yarn, inspecting it to see if it will lie flat against a table.

"This is too lumpy," 9-year-old Melanie told her teacher, Roberta Konefal-Shaer, of the crocheted disc that will someday become a hat. "What do you think I should do now? Do you think I should do a double stitch?"

At the Waldorf School, boys and girls from kindergarten through fifth grade scrutinize their knitting, crocheting and sewing projects like students elsewhere might examine computer programs or graphing calculators.

The private school in Bloomfield, Penn. -- one in a network of more than 900 schools practicing Waldorf Education worldwide -- is founded partly on the principle that forms of handwork such as knitting, crocheting and sewing are critical to a child's intellectual and emotional development.

"They're training their fingertips to be more alive," said Konefal-Shaer, the school's handwork teacher.

Every child in the school has two 45-minute handwork lessons per week. Kindergartners do projects such as sewing pouches for treasures found on nature walks. Fifth-graders spend much of the year knitting socks.

Knitting not only energizes the children's tactile sense but is also instrumental in mental development, Konefal-Shaer said.

"A child who knits when he's 6 will be a much stronger reader," she said. "They learn to communicate between both sides of the brain."

Students learn math, spatial and geometric skills in knitting and sewing, she said, whether it's first-graders counting stitches in each row of their scarves or fourth-graders creating and embroidering geometric patterns.

Waldorf Schools, founded in Germany in the early 20th century, stress "educating the whole child -- head, heart and hand."

The schools are distinctive in many ways. Arts and music are integral to the curriculum, for example, and students learn both Spanish and Russian in elementary grades. Students make and eat organic snacks, television is discouraged for children under 10 and walls are painted specific colors for each grade level, going from warm to cool colors as the students get older.

Taking on a project like a scarf also helps teach first-graders to manage frustration.

"Remember, just about everybody makes just about every mistake there is," she tells the class, first correcting their mistakes without their knowledge and then gradually pointing out missed or mangled stitches and teaching them to recognize their own imperfections.

The culminating project in fifth grade is a pair of socks -- something that takes the students nearly the whole year to complete. "You really have to be a skilled knitter to knit socks," said Konefal-Shaer. "Once you do socks, you can do anything."


First Knit Project - What should I knit when I'm first learning?

A great website for learning to Knit:


They have great videos for every step.

Some of my personal tips for your first project.

Learn to roll your yarn into a ball.

Buy straight needles about size 11, or 13 These make larger stitches and help you see your stitches as you go.

Buy yarn that is not twisted, fluffy or furry. Just plain worsted weight yarn for the first project. All one color and a light color will help you see the stitches.

After learning to cast-on, see video on knitting help dot com, you are ready for the first knit stitch. Getting comfortable holding the yarn, the two needles and deciding if you'll use your right hand or left hand to "feed" the yarn is probably the biggest decision, but you may not settle on one or the other until you've knit for awhile.

Knitting every row keeps your piece flat. You'll learn to do the steps and start relaxing a little and notice that the item is changing shape, oops. You'll want to call this practice and pull it out and rewind the yarn onto the ball and start over, everyone starts over sometime. I just finished a major project, about 2/3 through the project I had to tear out 1/2 of it and start over, so glad I did. I couldn't have hidden the errors I made, and it would be in the back of the closet in a WalMart bag to this day instead of on the prettiest little two-year-old you've ever seen.



This link will help you learn garter stitch which is knitting every row.

The easiest thing to knit is a scarf or table runner. Find free patterns at some of these websites.


just to name a few

I suggest you cast on about 20 stitches, knit every row for about 3 or 4 inches, then practice taking the stitches back off of the needles, to get familiar with the process of backing up to fix a "dropped" stitch.

When you are knitting, you are using one continuous strand of yarn and making loops with it to keep it permanently attached to itself for a garment or decoration. It will hold up for years, unless you "drop" (skip) a stitch, it will all come apart if you miss one.
Learning how to back-up or work your way down to a dropped stitch will save you from tearing out a piece and starting over.

Knitting is so relaxing once you've mastered two basic stitches, Knit and Purl.

I make purses and sell them (or give them away as gifts). A purse is made by holding two strands of yarn together, knitting rows (like making a scarf) and making seams ... it really is a simple project once you've learned basic knitting. Baby sweaters, hats, gloves, are all more advanced principles of the basic knit stitch. When I finish the knit project, I felt the item. Search felt or felting on my blog for simple instructions.

I know that if I can knit - so can you.

I'd love to coach you, if you have any questions.



Get knitting - Set a New Record

I've pulled in a few articles from KNITTING NEWS www.dailyknitter.com

Here's a neat article about a competition going on right now.

BUPA Care Homes is calling on knitting fans in Redditch to help create the world’s biggest tea cosy and set a new Guinness World Record.

Residents are being asked to knit squares or strips which can be sent on and added to others to create one giant tea cosy.

The challenge is being attempted to raise awareness of this year’s Communi-tea Week (April 20-26), a nationwide campaign which uses the theme of tea to tackle problems of isolation and loneliness in older people.

Siobhan Drane, from Bupa Care Homes, said: “An enormous tea cosy has really captured people’s imagination and already staff, residents, friends and families have dug out their knitting needles to make a start.

“We really want communities to get involved too so we can create a cosy that will be unbeatable for years to come.”

To comply with Guinness World Record guidelines, people should use 4mm knitting needles and double knit yarn.

The plain knit squares or strips can be any colour but need to be 15cm wide and either 15cm, 30cm or 45cm in length.

Finished squares or strips need to be handed in by Tuesday, March 31, either at a local Bupa care home or posted to Tea Cosy Challenge, Bridge House, Outwood Lane, Horsforth, Leeds, LS18 4UP.

To take part call 0113 3816306 or email communi-teaweek@bupa.com.

For more information, visit www.bupacarehomes.co.uk.

CELL PHONES - How did we live without them.

Our cell phone service offers a feature called Backup Assistant. I've dropped phones in water, and hand keyed every phone number back into phones in the past. I knew about this feature, so today (having over 50 phone numbers to add for an upcoming event) I decided to backup the phone before I add all these names, which required new software on the phone.

9 AM I started the process.

The phone customer service helped me through the download software process. The process DELETED over all the phone numbers, over 90 numbers from the phone instead of backing them up. i spent many long periods of time on the phone with several people, with the final conclusion I need to reenter all those number (plus the 40 I said I would add for the hubby).

I planned on knitting today, maybe some tonight, I just re-typed 145 names and numbers into the cell phone. I'm not a happy camper.

I did knit and felt a nice case for my cell phone a while back.

How to Wind Yarn Into a Skein from EHow

How to Wind Yarn Into a Skein

By eHow Hobbies, Games & Toys Editor

Having yarn in a skein can help keep the yarn in order and is a great way to organize yarn. The skeins can be placed neatly in a box or hung on a wall with thumbtacks. Skeins are made by winding yarn in a circle and then twisting that circle of yarn until it loops around itself. They are easy to make and don't require any extra equipment or tools.


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:

  • Something to wrap the yarn around
  • 2 or 4 extra short lengths of yarn
Find something to wind the yarn around. This can be a swift, the back of a chair, or a extra person's hands.
Wrap the yarn evenly. Make sure that none of the yarn is loose around in the winding.
Take 2 or 4 extra lengths of yarn. These should be 4 to 6 inches in length depending on the size of the skein. At regular intervals around the skein, wrap the extra yarn around the yarn in a figure eight. Tie yarn loosely. This will make sure that the yarn doesn't get tangled.
Tie the ends of the yarn together and remove the yarn from what it is wrapped around. You will have a circle of yarn.
With your thumbs, grab two opposite ends of the skein and pull the yarn taunt. With one hand, twist the yarn in one direction until all the yarn is tightly twisted.
Slide one end of the yarn into the other using the open areas created by your thumbs. The twist that was created will wrap the yarn around itself and create a neat log of yarn. Now the yarn is ready to store.


Aspartame, Nutrasweet, and Nutrasweet (pink), and Sweet n Low

I have gotten in such a habit of sweetening my tea with Sweet n Low (pink pakcet - saccharin) and avoiding aspartame (the blue packet). I'm used to the taste, and use it to cut back on sugar, but absolutely cannot tolerate aspartame, which is now in gums, candy bars, (I'm not talking about sugar freed candy and gum, I'm talking about an ingredient in everyday stuff.)

My complaint tonight is that in a restaurant when I asked for the "Pink" sweet n low, the lady brought me pink packets, but when I read them they said "Nutrasweet Pink" "Contains no saccharin."

Good thing I read the packet, as when I have just a taste of aspartame I get severe headaches. They start at the back of my neck and move forward to my forehead and stay, and stay ... no headache pain like it. I'm sure some think I'm a little annoying over this pink, blue, diet, regular, reading ingredients, etc. But I don't like headaches, they kinda slow me down, like go to bed pull the shades, cover my head, hot towels on the forhead and Excedrin migraine medication, slowed down.

I've never seen an official paper on aspartame, all I know is how it effects me. I'm shocked Nutrasweet can come out with a pink packet PINK BELONGS TO SWEET N LOW!!

That's my rant for today!!

No, one other thing, I carry Sweet N low in my purse, because so many places have stopped carrying it, and it is my sweetner of choice. McDonald's for one!

OK next time, back to knitting.


Oh, No, The Wind Followed Us

Should've known when you get Easterly Winds and you travel East you're gonna get the same wind every day!! Today we passed a fire in the median, that had jumped from a grass fire on the westbound lane of Interstate 40 just East of Texas/Oklahoma State line, tonight it is a major fire in that area.

We are set up camp less than 8 miles WEST of a fire burning in OK right now. The wind is Due East and due to quit in a few hours. WILD

Good thing I got my hair cut into a windblown style - 1 good thing about wind.

Actually wind is most annoying. I get earaches (always have) even if it is hot outside and windy, then I get dizzy. So wind and I do not get along, and since the wind tore up my motorcycle a few weeks ago, see my March 27 post, I'm not very happy with it or it's power. BUT, I have no control over it, so I'll get over it or used to it, it's better than a tornado or hurricane, for sure.

Just venting. I finished a third purse today in the truck. I'm hoping to do 3 more in the next week or so, as I want to have several at different stages when I do the presentation for the Mt. Olive Lutheran Church in May. Gotta get started on some i-cords. I want to felt these purses when I get home to my Washing machine, once I block them and dry them, they'll be ready to present!


Everything falling down around you? Get your hook and wool.

A new way to overcome FEAR ITSELF!! don't worry, be creative.

Whatever faults Maria D'Antuono may have, wasting time is not among them. The 98 year-old villager, from Tempera, near L'Aquila , became the latest survivor yesterday to be dragged from the rubble left by Monday's devastating earthquake in Italy . For 30 interminable hours, she lay below the ruins of her house, a few miles from the epicentre. So what did she do to while away the time, not knowing whether she would live or die as rescue workers dug towards her? The answer, it seems, was "crochet".

According to the Ansa news agency, D'Antuono was pulled from the rubble to cheers from the crowd and briefly answered questions from a reporter before she taken to hospital. Asked how she had passed the time since her house had collapsed on her, she reportedly said she had been busy with her hook and wool.

She was given a packet of crackers, but had a request that left onlookers even more astonished than before - and gave an entire new dimension to the concept of bella figura (which roughly translates as "keeping up appearances"). Before leaving for hospital, she said, she wanted a comb. (Note: in some articles they say she was knitting, but no matter, we all get it!).

Here is the link to a short spot done on Knitting for Your Health. The reporters are all over the place with the terms going from stitching, to crocheting, to sewing, the knitters they spoke with say it best! Enjoy. http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=4917058n

RE-Printed from Knitting Sisters NewsBits


Today I really miss my friend.

She was a good listener. But she really didn't have patience for nonsense, so you had to think through what you would say when you told her your problems, because her response would be, "Get a life."

I suppose she earned that response. After years and years of hardship ministry to Haitians, returning to the States, home-schooling 3 kids, or sending them to private school and volunteering at the school, simply giving of herself day in and out, I think she did have a right to have strong opinions.

When we had a serious accident out of town, she came to my aid. Pushing my wheelchair was more of a amusement park ride than an assistance, and celebrating our anniversary with us, both in wheelchairs, in a patient visiting room of a hospital, giving us both gag gifts, she knew when and how to make me laugh. We cried together, too. Our hearts were broken and healed together, we cooked together, sorted used clothes for the mission, matched up pairs of shoes, photographed school kids, taught Vacation Bible School in Haiti, got Montezuma's Revenge together, washed and hung up clothes, worked puzzles, played cards, cared for babies, hugged on Moms and so much more.


Today when I was doing laundry, I came across a rag that had been a very small towel. I have four of these towels. Nona and I bought them at a Fishing Dock in Jupiter Florida. Our hubbies took us fishing and as soon as we were too far from shore to turn back, (chartered boat), I started getting sea sick, then Nona got sick. The little head (bathroom) on the boat was a no-paper toilet. We quickly filled the trash can in the room. We both were so sick, we all but shared that little closet. She got so bad the details would not serve a purpose, but when we got back to shore, she wanted to shower. The only towels in the Bait shop were little bait towels about 12" by 12" square. We bought 4 and I helped her into the shower. We'd be laughing today, remembering this event, but today when I pulled the towel from the dryer - (we've used them for rags for years) - I lost it.

NONA - girl - you left too soon. I love you. I know your children miss you, I know your hubby misses you, your friends, supporters, the Haitians.

Girlfriend, you were always there. I'm bummed.

You can buy this poster.