Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Spring Must be Coming Soon

It has to be. I know Spring is right around the corner.

No, not because I got woke up by the birdsong a few days ago- although that was actually pretty cool.

And not because the days are getting longer- although I am thoroughly enjoying more light in the day.

No, I know Spring is coming because the Spring colds have hit the Coombs' home. We all have it in one form or another. Kleenex is king right now. I confess I don't mind the colds too badly. They don't seem to slow the kids down that much, really; and the worst that can happen seems to be getting sneezed on, or someone's snot dripping on me. Yeah, I'll take colds over flu or otherwise.

In other news (which I'm sure you would rather hear than the state of health of the household- especially this time of year), I am looking forward to the Rose City Yarn Crawl, which starts tomorrow.   I won't be able to participate tomorrow, as we have school and all the other normal daily things to attend to; but I fully intend to be a part of it on Friday. I have my route mapped out, and I figure I should be able to hit at least 10 of the yarn stores. Although, I confess, that may be overly optimistic- as I haven't actually told Joel yet that I intend to go to more than one of them.....we'll talk though. It'll work out.

I've been knitting.


I have about 3 or 4 patterns that are waiting to be written or sized or both, and instead of dealing with them, I am trying to knit another.

I'm working along on this sideways knit top (and I think I'm going to like it), and I think it's going pretty well. I sat down with it next to Joel the other night as we watched a bit of TV.  He started laughing, and made some comment about how he has "no idea" why I worry that I make patterns no one else wants to knit- as I'm juggling the top with 2 circular needles and 6 strands of yarn hanging off the back of it getting tangled in the several strands hanging down from the lifelines...... Yeah, it looks a bit complicated. But don't worry!! I finally figured out last night how I could write the pattern so it will only be an intermediate level knit. If you don't mind seaming. If you don't like seaming, you can do it my way.

I have come to the realization that I really don't have to learn a new technique every time I design something. I just seem to like it that way....

Monday, February 20, 2012

Review- Christian Historical Fiction

Heart of Gold, by Robin Lee Hatcher.

Set during the Civil War, a preacher and his daughter move out to Idaho Territory. At the same time they move into town, a Wells Fargo driver settles into town with his sick sister and her son.

If you have ever read Christian historical fiction before, that's all I need to tell you. You now know the plot and the ending.

I like historical fiction, but I am sad that Christian historical fiction is so very predictable. Boy meets girl, they fall in love, one or the other then comes to Christ- or if they are already both Christians, they go through some faith building times, almost lose each other for whatever reason, and then get back together and get the happy ever after ending.

I'm not saying this was a bad book. It wasn't. It was a nice little escape; clean and wholesome. But it was predictable. I don't anticipate getting more of Robin Lee Hatcher's books for that reason. While I like a good clean escape novel, I don't really like reading the same thing over and over. I got enough of  that when reading Gilbert Morris books as a teenager....

I really wish that Christian authors (and musicians for that matter) would feel that they can be more creative. I think they get stuck in a rut and worried that they have to put a certain amount of Scripture in (or a certain beat) or something, or their book (music) is not godly enough to call Christian. I'm totally ranting here, but it's a bit of a pet peeve of mine. God is so completely creative (look at the variety in the world!), we should use the creative talent He gives us to the uttermost - and to me, the predictability of Christian fiction (and music) is a depressing commentary on our fears. Ok, enough of the rant...

I give this book 3 stars. If  you want a nice, clean, relaxing, mindless escape, this is a great book. If you want something different, you might want to look elsewhere.

I received this book for free from BookSneeze in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Random Thursday

1) Joel wasn't able to be with me for Valentines Day. So he got me flowers early, and I've been enjoying them all week.

I especially love the fact that he got me daisies. I really love daisies.
These flowers are extra special to me since it is only the 2nd or 3rd time in our relationship that he has gotten flowers for me. (That would be because of my allergies. He's a very thoughtful man- so thoughtful that he hesitates to get me flowers because he doesn't want to make me sick.) They have made my home beautiful this week; and I will be drying some for some future craft projects to keep the beauty even longer.

 2) Last night I took the kids to PeeWee Skatechurch.

They were the cutest little skaters there. :)

3) This morning I finally finished the double knit hat I've had on the needles since the beginning of December. At long last!!! I was beginning to think it was the knit that would not end, yes it went on and on my friend....
The fact is, I just don't have the knitting time I used to. A couple hours in the evening doesn't get a whole lot accomplished.  I am going to have to step it up, as I have a lot, a lot, of projects I need to get done in the next 3 months.

4) The kids had swim lessons yesterday. We got there a bit early, as my other errands didn't take as long as I expected.  I was looking at my Kindle while we waited, and Daisy came up and said, "Mom, you brought your knitting, right?"
"Yes, I did." (What kind of question is that?! Of course I brought my knitting!!!!)
"Then could you please knit so I can read some more of the Five Little Peppers on your Kindle?"
I have to say, I think that is the first time one of my family has requested me to knit. They want me to knit things for them- but they tend to not want me to take the time to actually do the knitting.

5) Since I finished the hat today, I get to spend the rest of the day doing design work. Planning the next designs, sketching and swatching, and -the very best part- casting on. Of course all of that will be interspersed with teaching school, feeding children, cleaning house, and just generally being a mom; but hopefully I'll get started on the next project before evening so I can do some actual knitting tonight.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

New Year Blues

I feel like I have been neglecting the blog lately.

I know I have been neglecting my knitting.

I have come to the conclusion that I get "New Years' Blues" in regard to knitting.  Every January, I seem to lose all desire and motivation to knit.  I feel burned out, over it. I have to set it all aside for a little while as casting on new projects doesn't help; nor does finishing anything. The love is just gone.

Fortunately, that feeling never seems to last. It's February now- and the New Years' Blues are over. I am wanting to knit again, which is a really really good thing as I have gotten rather behind on my deadlines with this whole not knitting thing.

I've cast on a new purse project- which I must confess is not the least bit helpful to my deadlines.  I decided  that all my deadline knitting required too much concentration to be in my purse for the waiting times. So I cast on a simple pair of socks. Okay, only one is on the needles at the moment, but it will eventually be a pair.
I have 1 skein of Pinto Pony color and 2 skeins of Trail Mix color of Panda Cotton.  I'm making up the pattern as I go along. I have a pretty good idea of what I intend- but that may change halfway along. It's going to be pretty plain vanilla for the most part, though. And at the moment, I have no intention of writing a pattern for it. That might change too, but for right now knitting for the sake of knitting and not for designing patterns is something that is really appealing to me.

I currently have 4 patterns that are sitting as notes in my design book that I need to grade and write. I am intentionally putting it off.  It's bad.  I have every desire to knit- and no desire to write patterns. I am expecting that to change eventually too, as I seem to be a rather changeable type of being- but at the moment..... Really, I just want to knit crazy things, simple things, new designs- and not keep track of how I did it.

I'm thinking it would be awesome to have a tech editor.