FO Friday: Baby Boy Blanket

I kind of fell down the crochet rabbit hole and couldn’t put it down. And then viola…I have a finished Blue Baby Blanket!

Pattern: Crochet Blanket of my own improvisation

Hook: N or 10MM Hook

Yarn: Bernat Blanket Ombre in Teal Dreams

I cast on a whole whack of chained stitches and just started doing a half double crochet stitch. And then I worked through the first ball of yarn and started the second. It was at this point I realized based on my unscientific and not counted cast on, that if I continued on this path I would end up with a long skinny rectangle. And that wasn’t what i was going for in a baby blanekt. So I crocheted until I got to something that was square-ish and then I started working around the edges to add a border with my remaining yarn.

I ended up with a 29 by 33 inch blanket. So while not square, its close enough for me. I really found this a project I couldn’t put down. With the super bulky yarn it I could really see progress. And that just felt so good! I got two LARGE skeins of yarn out of my stash that amounted to roughly 439.6 yards out.

I have no plans for this FO. I think I will just put it in the gift box and wait until I have a need for a cute baby gift. But this has left with me with the itch to do another one of these projects but that would mean buying more yarn for a project I don’t have a recipient for. I think I will put a pin in that thought and see if it keeps coming back.

Happy Crafting!!

Recasting On DK Ripple Bralet

I got over my disappointment for my first attempt at the DK Ripple bralet and re-cast on. I went up two whole pattern sizes this time to account for my gauge in the first go around.

I managed to complete the stretchy cast on again and get working in the round for the 1×1 twisted rib. Twisted rib is not my favorite but it doesn’t last long for this project. I think I may sit this one aside for a bit until I can finish the sleeves on my Radiate pullover. I really feel like I need another FO win to boost my mojo.

So for now, I think I’ll stick to one sweater a time! Happy Knitting!!

Tossing The Stash

I recently signed up for the Yarn Harlot’s patreon and I have been watching her videos. The most recent one was a tour of her stash and how to best care for your yarn. One of the items she recommended was to do a “toss” off the stash a couple of times of year to look for pests and to reacquaint yourself with what you have.

I got a wild hair this past weekend and pulled out every skein of yarn I own. Warning….yarn content ahead. Avert you gaze if chaos and piles of yarn will offend your sensibilities.

Okay, I warned you. The below photo is the entirety of my stash. I very carefully emptied every tub and examined every bag. I found a single spider but other than that my yarn appears to be clean and pest free. And then I had to put it all back….

I carefully curated each yarn category and repacked into clean bags. For instance my sock yarn and lace yarn is below. Starting at the bottom left working clockwise I have a large pile of variegated yarn, then above that is my self-striping, then sock blanks and sock tubes, followed by lace mohair or suri alpaca, below that is sock sets, then a small pile speckled yarn and lastly in the bottom right corner are my solid and tonals.

I packed each kind of yarn together and but into drawers. And then for the first time I affixed labels to each drawer so that I know where to look for various items.

Some of my categories were by weight, fiber content or sometimes by manufacturer. It may not make sense for everyone else, but I think it’s going to work for me.

What did I learn from this? I have WAY too much variegated sock yarn, less self-striping sock yarn than I would have guessed, very few sweater quantities and almost no worsted weight yarn whatsoever. I’m hoping this review will help me make more productive purchases in the future. But who knows….sometimes a knitter never learns, lol!

Happy Knitting

Radiate Sleeves

My Radiate body is complete and I’m squarely into swimming on sleeve island!

I managed to slip on this garment and I’m pleased to report that it fits. It does need a good blocking for the fabric to relax into that good sweatshirt style fit I want. I’m super pleased with my alternating skeins of the hand dyed yarn. I can’t discern any pooling or flashing in the sweater body. I do not plan to alternate skeins on the first sleeve. I have enough yarn left over that I can knit the full sleeve from the same skein of yarn.

I can FEEL this sweater almost being done. So I’m hoping to power through the sleeves so I can have another fall sweater.

Happy Knitting!!

Warming Up My Crochet Muscles

After my craft project purge, I found the inspiration to keep picking up this long languishing blanket project.

I am having to warm up my crochet muscles a bit. This is super bulky yarn and a big hook so I have to take breaks to avoid soreness and injury. But so far I have crocheted through the first skein of Bernat Blanket and I’m starting the second.

I’m having a little trouble maintaining good edges. One side is okay and the other is a bit wonky. But I’m going to keep moving forward and it will be blanket-like in the end. I have no recipient in mind, I’m just enjoying getting this yarn out of my stash and having a “new to me” project to work on.

Happy Crafting!!

Culinary Adventures

This week in Green Chef adventures was the Italian Sausage Puttanesca and spicy roasted broccoli. It plated up very well and looked great. But the results were mixed in my opinion.

The flavor was good and recipe was super easy. I loved the broccoli but I could have taken or left the pasta sauce. The hubby and I decided we don’t like olives and if we make this again we would keep the capers and leave off the olives. And then I don’t really care for sausage in the first place so its not my favorite. But the hubby really enjoyed the sausage.

It was a nice a change of pace and stretched my comfort zone. Which is exactly what I was looking for to shake up our mealtimes. I think we are going to do one more delivery from this company and then maybe try a different service.

Happy Cooking!!

Long Languishing Blanket

This was a blanket that Ravelry tells me I started in May 2016 and frogged in September 2017. But I didn’t actually rip it out so I’m just going to keep going. I unearthed it during my craft room organization. This makes this project older than PB….

Back in 2016/2017 I was big into crocheting these super bulky blankets for gifts and presents. They are quick to work up and make nice cozy blankets. If memory serves this was going to be for my friend’s baby boy but I didn’t get it done in time so he just got a onsie and some diapers. So the blanket didn’t have a deadline anymore and was resigned to the long term storage tote. I then promptly forgot about it.

I think I am going to see if I can finish this blanket to put in my gift bin or perhaps let PB and Jellybean have it for their dolls and monsters to swaddle them?

Happy Crafting!!

Radiate Ribbing

Can I get a hallelujah and an amen? I have finished the body of my Radiate and i’m starting the hem ribbing.

I added an extra inch and a half to the body length than the pattern asked for. I know I want to block the body out a bit wider for a nice sweatshirt style fit. So that means I am going to eat into the length a bit even with super wash yarn that is likely to grow. I want my finished sweater to fall at my hip line

One other modification I made is to turn the hem into a split hem. Being a women with robust hips and waist I really like how the split hem allows a garment to stretch and lay nicely on my body. I think I am close to finishing the back hem. My plan is to knit the front hem to be a bit shorter to create a mild high/low effect.

Fingers crossed this goes quickly! Happy Knitting!!

Clearing The Deck

Also on a quarantine reaction front, I decided to use some of my kid free time last weekend to do a little “crafting round-up” to see if I could clear the decks a little. I just had the urge to organize and get rid of projects that don’t make me happy. I ended up cleaning my craft room bookshelf and the crafting corner where I dump all my projects. I came up with the following:

  1. A tote of WIPs I hadn’t looked at in at least two years or more
  2. My ginormous mitred square memory blanket and project bag
  3. Two giant knitting bags with many many project bags in them

Y’all, I dumped the whole shooting match out on the living room floor and just started sorting. I managed to empty three project bags and reclaim the yarn and needles for projects I just didn’t want to do anymore. I repacked my tote with three projects I still want to have on hold and organized my scraps for my memory blanket into one place.

That let me with one bag/pile of WIPs I actually feel like I want to work on. Including a blanket project that I forgot I had from….ahem….four years ago?

I’m hoping the revs up my mojo a little bit. But at the very least I feel a little less burdened with “to-dos” and projects. There is a lot of potential in that bag I just need to realize a little of it maybe.

Happy Knitting!!

Cheesecake Experiment

Quarantine life is really starting to have an effect on me. I got a wild hair at 7 pm on a weeknight that I wanted to see if I could actually make cheesecake in my instant pot like I keep seeing on social media. I just so happened to have all the ingredients, so in the midst of bedtime preparation for the littles I pulled a recipe off the internet and got to work. It mixed up well and was super easy to get in the cooker.

What I didn’t expect was how “poofy” the cake was when I pulled it out of the cooker. I thought for sure I ruined it. The filling had over spilled and made a cheesy volcano. But I set it out to cool and walked away.

When I came back an hour later I noticed it had receded into something more resembling an actual cheesecake. We let it rest overnight in the fridge and then the family promptly DEVOURED the entire thing. The flavor was very good. I think I need to work on my filling texture and how much to fill the pan. We all voted that this was something we would do again.

PB didn’t much care for the filling and just liked the crust. But Jellybean had a ball experimenting with different toppings. He settled on caramel sauce as the best option. I can’t blame him!

What would you put on top of cheesecake?