Thursday, December 31, 2009

And what a trip it was...

So, a year ago tomorrow I began my journey, hooking my way through the year one square at a time.

I could wax poetic about the quest (God knows I'm not above a little waxing), but aside from the fact that My Beloved is making me a grilled cheese sandwich in advance of an evening of movies and games at my sibling's house and I don't have much time to write, I'm not altogether sure there is anything especially poetic to say.

I loved the journey. I enjoyed the challenge of choosing a new pattern every day, catching up when I missed a day or two, finding patterns that reflected the changing seasons, and figuring out what to say about the creations that tumbled from my hook and fingers at the end of the day.

But I don't know that it taught me anything all that momentous - except that that's not necessarily a bad thing. Not everything is a lesson, nor does it have to be. Not everything needs to have a deeper meaning. Some things are just pure enjoyment. Pure escapism. Pure creativity at its most pleasantly satisfying best.

Sometimes a journey is just a journey. Moving quietly from A to B and enjoying the travel time in between.

Enjoying the travel
. Those are absolutely the journeys I like best, and I'm so happy that this was one of those trips.

December 31, 2009

A rising sun motif to usher in the start of a new year and a new decade. And, of course, still more adventures in crochet.

Stay tuned...

Friday, November 27, 2009

I have a feeling...

...that by the end of this journey, there will be holes.

And yeah, more that just crochet holes. Punny, that.

I've tried to hook one motif per day. I really, really have. That was my grand plan all those many months ago. And I think I've done pretty well, all things considered. Work, illness, family obligations, plain old bad days - given all those variables, I've done pretty well if I do say so myself.

The last time I checked, I was about 8 or 10 motifs behind.

But the thing is, I'm not sure I'll be able to catch up. As the holidays bear down upon me complete with their own contractual obligations - including some Christmas hooking - it just might not be possible for me to actually catch up.

But I think that's okay.

As it says in the header, it's the journey, not the destination. And sometimes the journey isn't as easy as you'd planned.

I happen know that in spades.

But still, I keep going. Holes and all.

November 24 & 25, 2009

Another dishcloth. I'm addicted to cotton.

Now, it dawned on me as this was taking shape that it totally does NOT fit into the whole "motif" theme. It's more of an object than a square. You could not make an afghan out of a string of these crocheted Christmas lights.

The problem is, in addition to this pattern, I'd also printed out had a pattern for a Christmas light dishcloth - and that's what I thought I was making. I was watching Glee whilst hooking, and it didn't sink in until I was too far into the project to turn back that I was using the wrong pattern.

I blame TV.

The end.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Can't seem to stay away from Christmas...

...or dishcloths.

November 23, 2009

I think this would be a cute stocking stuffer wrapped around a small bottle of dish soap.

After all, if you HAVE to clean dishes, you might as well be festive about it.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Angels and reindeer. That's what they should call this episode.

I'm not entirely sure that the first two motifs really look all that much like angels, but that's indeed what they are. One is a tiny little ornament, the other is a dish cloth (although I'm not sure I understand the logic behind using an angel to wash up after your spaghetti dinner. Or the desire, for that matter).

Anyway, if you squint - or, perhaps, use your Picasso glasses - I'm sure you'll see the angelic resemblance.

Luckily there's no mistaking Rudolph. The nose gives him away. Or maybe it's the vacant stare...

November 19, 20 & 21, 2009

Ah, Christmas. I love you.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Icky sicky

There are far, far worse things than this cold - or whatever it is I'm cooking - and I thank my lucky stars that all I'm dealing with is a runny nose, sore throat and crazy fatigue.

But still, eeew to being sick. And a one finger salute to germs while I'm at it.

November 16 & 17, 2009

Thank heavens for tissues with lotion, Halls cough drops, chicken soup, hot tea, a kind husband, and a 1992 Christmas magazine with a handful of Christmas crochet crafts in it.

Monday, November 16, 2009

I've been hit! I've been hit!

Despite my best efforts (seriously, I've been single-handedly keeping the hand sanitizer companies in business), I seem to have come down with a bit of a plague.

Just a little one - and I'm hoping it stays that way since I haven't been allowed to get the H1N1 vaccine yet. Which, of course, really means who the flock knows what I'm cooking up?

Luckily sitting on the couch feeling like crap is also a good time to hook. And catch up on missed hooking.

'Cause there seems to be some of that going on...

November 13, 14, & 15

Special thanks to Shanna for, quite out of the blue, sending me Stitch 'n Bitch: The Happy Hooker, which is where I found all three of these patterns.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

It's got heart

If I hadn't been so lazy, I'd have photographed the little heart motif before I sewed it onto the hat.

But I was indeed very lazy (it would have involved moving my ass off the couch and climbing up a flight of stairs). So I didn't.

So an entire hat it is.

And that's the kind of day it was.

November 10, 2009

Fortunately I found enough energy to drop the hat in the mail this afternoon, along with all kinds of love and kisses. It's winging its way to a friend who is due to have her baby early next week.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A harbinger...

Snow. Ick.

I love snow that falls in the weeks leading up to Christmas, but I'd be more than happy for spring to start at the stroke of midnight on December 31st.

Yeah, yeah, I'm Canadian. We're hearty. We laugh in the face of snot-freezing wind chill forecasts. We scoff at blinding whiteouts. We flip a mittened bird at treacherous driving conditions.

Or so they say, anyway.

'Cause some of us don't. Some of us loathe shoveling snow with a fierce passion. Some of us would rather eat shards of glass than drive in a snowstorm. Some of us get so cold we feel it from the inside out. Some of us haven't skied since it was a mandatory part of the grade 9 gym curriculum.

Snow is pretty. But I'm into watching it from afar these days. Waaaaay far.

Or, simply crocheting it from the comfort of my couch by the fire.

November 9, 2009

There is a snowflake in there somewhere. It was more obvious before the flake turned into a square, but it's there.

Just like it'll be there on my driveway in the not too distant future.


Monday, November 9, 2009

She's alive! She's alive!

...And not just alive, but totally addicted to the leftover yarn from my Mom, which I employed to make all three of these motifs.

I'm somewhat embarrassed to admit that it's not even top quality stuff - just some acrylic Vanna's Choice from Lion Brand. But it's just so thick and cozy, and the colours are so deep and rich and lovely.

It feels good on the hook.

And in the heart.

That's all I can offer by way of explanation.

November 6, 7 & 8, 2009

This is a square motif from the Interweave Crochet afghan pattern I mentioned in my last post. I think the purples just work so well here, somehow. See? Cheap yarn can be purdy!

This is one of two flowers meant to embellish a tea cozy. I haven't seen a tea cozy since the 1970s at my Grandparents' kitchen table, keeping their Brown Betty toasty warm. Hmmm, I may need to make one now...

This square is HUGE. It's probably 11" x 11", and although it's from an afghan pattern, I'm thinking it would make a pretty funky pillow. Which I may get around to making one of these fine days.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


My mom started a tumbling blocks afghan late last winter, finishing it up a month or so ago. It's absolutely gorgeous and so well worth the hours and hours of knitting, changing colours, and sewing in ends.

That's what I think, anyway. At 69 with pretty severe arthritis, she may have regretted the undertaking once she discovered what a mammoth job it was going to be, but I still think it was worth her blood, sweat and tears. It looks beautiful in their living room, and with the chilly weather slowly creeping in, it was completed just in time for cuddling under snowy skies.

As she always does, she passed along the leftover yarn to me, much to my delight. Expected delights are delights nonetheless.

I used some of that yarn to make this pretty motif, which was designed for an afghan pattern from the fall 2009 issue of Interweave Crochet magazine.

The colours are so deeply saturated, and the yarn is thick and soft. And it came from my mommy, which makes it as cozy as can be.

November 3, 2009

I might get additional yarn and pick at this afghan over the winter, just like my mom did.

Monday, November 2, 2009


This is an appropriate motif for today, since at the moment it feels like someone has shot an arrow into my head just above my left eye.

Stupid barometric pressure headache.

November 2, 2009

And now me and my aching noggin are heading to bed.

The end.

Saturday, October 31, 2009


I know it's incredibly morbid, but every year I get a little kick out of saying that Thomas is going out for Halloween as a ghost.

Really, this is probably only genuinely funny to My Beloved and I - everyone else just laughs nervously when I whip out this annual joke - but in addition to the fact that I really do somehow find it amusing, it makes me feel closer to Thomas.

On a day when people are parading their more-adorable-than-usual children in an unending stream up to my front door in costumes so precious they make my busted uterus ache, it's nice to feel extra close to Thomas.

And so, I make the joke.

And a little cotton ghost washcloth too.

And all's right with my slightly warped world.

October 31, 2009

And now I'm off to bed, which is the only way I can guarantee I'm going to stop eating the leftover chocolate. For at least the next 7 or so hours anyway...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Hat's off. And on. And on. And on.

This is the first few rounds of a hat pattern, with the addition of a quick little single crochet border to finish it off.

I've been working on a couple of special order kids hats using this pattern, and thought the initial couple of rows would make a pretty motif perfectly suited for a certain little crochet odyssey.

Plus, once you get into the swing of an addictive pattern it's kind of hard to get out.

October 28, 2009

Somebody help me! I'm trapped in a hat!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

But let the real stuff fall somewhere else for at least another month or so, m'k?


October 27, 2009

With apologies to my friends in Colorado who were dealing with blizzard conditions on Sunday...

Monday, October 26, 2009

Lest We Forget

Every year about this time, little red poppies start appearing on the lapels of Canadians and Britains. This 90-year old tradition started as a way of remembering the end of World War I on November 11, 1918.

Along with a moment of silence at 11:00am on November 11th, we wear the poppies to remind us of the sacrifices of the soldiers who fought and died for the freedoms we enjoy today.

And usually someone, somewhere, recites these lines...

In Flanders' fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place: and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders' fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe;
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high,
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders' Fields.

John McCrae, 1915.

October 26, 2009

For those who never came home, we remember.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

One BIG square...

...which also serves as proof that I WAS preoccupied with blankie squares the past few weeks.

This, after much sewing, is the finished afghan. If you look closely, you'll see it's half knitted and half crocheted. It was a Mom and me collaboration - a gift of yarny love for my sister who turned 42 this weekend.

October 25, 2009

Happy Birthday Kathy!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The road to crochet hell... paved with good intentions.

And gray-ish lasagna noodle ninja throwing stars.

October 22, 2009


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

In the meantime...

Mary, I will absolutely prove that I was working on a blankie this week by taking its picture and posting it here when it's done. I'm nothing if not a shameless attention whore when it comes to displaying pictures of my crocheted stuff (ahem, clearly...), so stay tuned.

In the meantime, here's an off-centered flower in a lovely soft blue that looks frustratingly bland and gray here, and a teeny tiny little cotton granny square.

And now, back to the blankie...

October 18 & 19, 2009

I'm at the sewing together stage. And there will be callouses.

See? Attention whore.

Monday, October 19, 2009


...but for a good cause.

I'm trying to get a special order blankie finished, and I desperately needed to spend some time doing squares for it this weekend. Which, of course, meant I didn't have quite as much time for non-project specific squares.

Which is why these are reruns.

And why this is a boring post.

October 16 & 17, 2009

While these are reruns in the sense that you've seen these two patterns before, they were ones I needed to do for the blankie, so I believe they still totally count.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Friday, October 16, 2009

October 15th

October 15th is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day, which I quietly celebrated yesterday. In addition to lighting a candle in my front window at 7:00pm, I crocheted a little bouquet of pink and blue flowers, one for each of the wee souls who slipped in and out of our lives without a sound.

Because I will always, always remember.

October 15, 2009

I love you, little ones.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Fall colours, part II

Two button-y flowers and one single autumn leaf.

And that, as they say, is that.

For today, anyway.

October 2, 12, 13, 2009

Quietly recovering from holiday hangover. During which no actual alcohol was consumed with the exception of one measly half a glass of wine.

But still, a holiday hangover. The cruel curse of the bereaved, I suppose.

P.S. Shanna, can you check the e-mail address you posted? I can't seem to get it to work, and blogger won't let me comment on your blog for some reason! Ack!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

A perfect storm

We used to have Thanksgiving dinner up at my Grandparent's cottage when I was a kid. The tradition didn't last much beyond my 6th or 7th year (for reasons best kept in the proverbial vault), but I remember it very well.

Particularly the year of the big leaf storm. It was probably 1975, and we had a new-ish kitten (my very first) who had never seen an entire forest of trees drop their golden, red and orange leaves in a torrent of autumnal frenzy all at once.

I was pretty agog too, as I recall. We all were, really. You don't see that kind of thing very often.

The kitten attacked the front window as the wind swept the leaves from hundreds of feet in the air and whisked them to the ground in twisty, whirling gusts. We marveled. We laughed. We took 8mm movies.

And now, we remember it all with so much fondness.

So in honour of those sweet fall days at the cottage of long ago, a bunch of yarny leaves in all the colours I remember from that glorious day nearly 35 years ago.

October 3, 9, 10 & 11, 2009

This is truly the most beautiful time of year. It never fails to take my breath away.

Friday, October 9, 2009

I can almost taste it...

Mmmm. Pumpkin pie!

Can you see it? Is this not the cutest pattern ever???

I would love to give credit where it's due if only I could remember where I found the pattern. It was online...maybe through I can't remember now - I'm just so tickled that it looks as cute as it does and that I happened to have pumpkin pie-coloured yarn in my stash. What are the odds?

Best of all, I have real pumpkin in my pantry, and will be baking edible versions of this fall-y pie for Thanksgiving dinner this weekend.


October 8, 2009

I could probably eat a whole pie all by myself. Particularly if I had lots of whipped cream to go with it.

I'm not kidding.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


There. A spider with eight legs. AND a web to boot.

Happy now?

October 7, 2009

I kid. I kid. I totally knew the spider motif I did the other day was missing two legs, I was just entirely too lazy to make them - even though usually blatant omissions/lazy-ass sloppiness like that makes me really, really twitchy.

Apparently it bugs others too.

Pardon the pun.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Finally, a seasonally correct motif. Unlike the snowflakes I couldn't seem to stop making back in the summer, a jack-o-lantern is a wholly appropriate choice for October 7th.

Granted, I've ignored Thanksgiving altogether which of course does come before Halloween, but I found a pattern on that should rectify that. And there's still time to make it.

Stay tuned...

October 7, 2009

I think I may need to dress up this Halloween. There are no children in our house, and I haven't been invited to any Halloween shin digs, but by virtue of the fact that it falls on a Saturday, it feels like I should do something a little wild and crazy just the same.

As only 39-year old hookers can.

Monday, October 5, 2009

By way of explanation...

...I have just two words: Sewer backup.


Anyhoo, several gallons of bleach-laced water, 49 billion pairs of rubber gloves, three mop heads, and a rented wet vac later, and here we are. With just two measly motifs and lots of catching up to do later this week, I suppose.

October 4 & 5, 2009

Spiders. Geez, I wish that's all I'd found in the basement Friday morning...

Thursday, October 1, 2009

My eyes! My eyes!

Ugh, it's so hard to shoot Christmas-red yarn! It gets hyper-saturated and smothers every colour in its immediate vicinity (like the dark forest green), making your eyes simultaneously bleed and snap shut to block out the burning.

But really, no big loss in this case. The motif is kind of ugly anyway.

September 30, 2009

I need to go rest my eyes now.

You probably do too.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Wrong, wrong, wrong and wrong

There are a whole bunch of things wrong with this square. I'm not sure any of the mistakes are obvious enough to notice, particularly if you don't have a picture of the "real" square for comparison, but there are mistakes nonetheless. A-plenty.

I was watching TV while I made it so it's not out of the realm of possibility that I was distracted enough to have read the pattern incorrectly, but I'm pretty sure I was doing exactly as it said.

I read, re-read, pulled out rows - did everything I could - and no matter what I tried, it was clearly going to turn out catastrophically wrong.

So I just ad-libbed what I thought seemed right instead, and this is the result.

It's not right - the blue petals are supposed to be somewhat dimensional, for one thing - but it's close enough.

And sometimes close enough is just fine.

September 29, 2009

I think my luck with the 1991 magazine may have finally run out. Alas.

Monday, September 28, 2009

A blast from the past. Or three.

All three of the motifs posted today come from patterns I found in an old magazine I uncovered in the basement last year when I was sorting through crap for our garage sale.

It's from September 1991, which is a good 12 or 13 years before I even learned how to crochet.

There are some eye-wateringly atrocious sweater patterns in it (very late 80s Cosby style - weird colours, big patterns, boxy as hell), but there are also some very charming afghan patterns and granny square-esque motifs mixed in with the fashion disasters.

It was a pleasant surprise.

And it's nice to get those kind for a change.

September 24, 25, 26, 2009

The pack rat in me is feeling very smug right now. She KNEW the magazine would be useful one day...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Today, yesterday and the day before that

One of these squares just doesn't belong here (with apologies to Mr. Rogers).

And it's not the square. Or the circle. It's the weird diamond-esque yellow oval.

I'm just not feelin' it. It's kind of lumpy, a little misshapen, and just...odd. It's like a stylized, yarny, "Always with wings" (with apologies to Proctor & Gamble).

September 21, 22 & 23, 2009

And now I'm going to stop apologizing and get on with my day.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Ahhh, that's better

It's much easier to blog when the camera and computer play nice.

And without further ado...

September 18, 2009

I used a scrap of hot pink Bernat Satin to make this little heart, but ran out just before I could finish.

Instead of scrapping the whole thing, I decided to use a bit lavender to finish the job.

I realize it looks like it's been patched, but I think that's fitting. I imagine if you could see my figurative heart, it would be delicate tangle of memories and loves held together with white glue, duct tape, and bits of string.

Life will do that to you.

September 19, 2009

Bing Crosby has nothing to do with crochet at all, as far as I know, but I think it should be noted that crocheting on a Saturday evening while watching back-to-back Bing Crosby movies is a very cozy thing to do.

And, as an added bonus, blue flowery things emerge from your fingertips as if by magic.


September 20, 2009

Sunflowers remind me of Fall and my sister. Fall because they're such a deep, fall-y yellow, and my sister because she inevitably brings giant handfuls of them to your house if you invite her for dinner around harvest time.

I like things that never change.

I like her too. Kind of a lot.

While I had all kinds of time to look at but not update my blog, I noticed that I was four motifs behind. September 2 and August 4, 9, and 22 were motif-less.

So I took a little extra crocheting time this weekend to catch up a bit...

There. TOLD you I wasn't slacking!