Thursday, November 30, 2017

Monthly Wrapup November 2017

I've had a ton of fun with the posts this month.  I tried for a wide variety and think I have that.  I'm still a fair few away from my goal of 100 posts for the year, but I'm confident I'll get there.

I learned new things!

Taxgedo the word cloud maker lets you put your clouds in shapes.  Love my cat shaped cloud.

I finally learned how to resize pictures in Photoshop Elements, and could fit pictures on my Thanksgiving cards.  They had to be 3x5 to fit the blank cards I have.  Voila.

 I just need to figure out layers.  I've found several good YouTube videos that might help.

Podcasts!   While looking for five for each topic I found many more interesting podcasts to try out.  Now that the pressure of daily posts is done, I'll re-do my podcast list and include some of the others.  There were enough to do with gardening and books to consider giving them their own link lists under their blogroll categories.

I am enjoying the Fiction podcasts.  Limetown will return in 2018!  There was a little mini-cast this October saying they'd return then. The original set aired in 2015, so how lucky to just listen to it now and be all ready for it's return.   A little bit mystery, a little bit radio show, a little bit X Files.

The Most Popular Posts This Month, In Order:

1.  DOA's Ten Favorite Star Trek Episodes: The Original Series

2. Movie Monday: Five Upcoming Films

3. Embroidery Tuesday: Embroidering Rudolph

4.  DOA's November Blog Challenge! En Garde!

5.  Quotable

I still need to hit 100 posts!  I've ideas for but not planned dates set for some fun December topics.  I enjoyed many of the memes/post subject ideas I tried and they'll appear again sometime.  Particularly the monthly wrapup.

November 29th Rebus Answer

For a long time after that summer, the four Penderwick sisters still talked of Arundel.

From Jeanne Birdsall's The Penderwicks.  A sweet old fashioned story that reminded me of Edward Eager's books without the magic.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

A First Line RebusTo Finish The Month

Here you go, one last Rebus for November.   I thought the old Festisite Rebus maker wasn't working anymore because of some popups, but, here it is.  I am also providing the same first line translated to pictures with My Rebus.  Click to enlarge as always, answer will be up tomorrow morning.


My Rebus

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Hand Quilting

I have far more crafts and materials going than anyone could ever use up.  I don't need to know another craft, really I don't, and I haven't an inch of space for anymore craft materials of any kind.

However, in the back of my mind is the desire to make one, just one! Patchwork quilt. I love the idea of using squares of cloth from clothes that just don't work anymore, just a nice reminder via some pretty scrap of material.

As we know, the sewing machine and I are not on friendly terms.  There are books stacked in front of it.  Not so convenient.  Here is the most beautiful quilt I've ever seen, made by our children's librarian for me to take to chemo back in the day.  Machine sewn by someone who is a fine seamstress.  Note the edge, and all the flowers playing to my love of the garden.

I want to put my own quilt together by hand.  I love hand sewing.

If you search for Hand Quilting, you'll get a bunch of sites telling you how to stitch your squares together by machine.  Bonk!

Recently, I was looking for something else and came across the term Hand Piecing.  Good lord, a ton of places telling you how to, from the very beginning, cut your squares and sew them together by hand.   

How is the common ordinary non-sewing fool supposed to think to look up hand piecing instead of hand quilting?   By the way, Hand Quilting appears to solely refer to those bumpy little patterns you can make by outlining shapes on your quilt.

I sort of hoped to have cut some squares for this post, but it has been a busy month and I've been head over heels for crochet.  Writing this has made me want to give that patchwork a try.

I have this cute shirt which doesn't fit that I thought would make charming squares.

Something possesses me every once in awhile to buy those little packs of fabric.  I told myself they'd be good to practice my machine sewing skills on, but I can't bring myself to ruin them.

Something's got to give, right?

Here are some wonderful places to learn the basics of Hand Piecing (secretly to you and I Hand Quilting, because we would be making a quilt by hand, doh.)

Monday, November 27, 2017

Menu Monday

I’ve found that it saves a lot of time and money to work from a weekly menu.  I just shop for ingredients I need for particular meals, use what I have on hand as much as possible, and try new things often.

In order to make sure I'm not repeating the same meals over all the time, I use my monthly meal calendar to balance things out.

 I keep thinking I'd like to plan out a whole month in advance using new and old recipes, but I end up working week to week.  Sloth.

I also pencil in the meals for the week at the bottom of my grocery list so I can see what goes with what and so I don't forget any ingredients.  (There's room to write that doesn't show on this example.)

 Here are some suggestions to get you started:

Smoked paprika and Liquid Smoke...the best sloppy joes I've ever had.  Find some really nice buns for them too.

I'm a bad dog. I had the ingredients so I made this twice in a week.  I loved it, my spouse did not. So I ate it myself the second time and made him something else.  I halved the recipe each time.  Use Ruffles for the chips and crush them well.   I'm not sure I trust myself to make it again.  (...pencils in ingredients on grocery list...)

I love coleslaw, and tried this recipe for Thanksgiving.  The store didn't have any fresh Italian Parsely so I sprinkled in a tiny bit of dried from the cupboard.   I was lucky to find a tiny head of cabbage.  The method for shredding up the cabbage for so simple and quick.  I was surprised at how tasty the dried cranberries were in the dish.  Just an easy, lovely, light dish.  I'll halve it to make for myself at home.  It's nice to try recipes out on a crowd, but I've been halving more and more recipes, particularly new ones, in case I'm not so fond of them, and because many use 9 x 13 pans and are just way too much for two.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Series Saturday

Time to mention a few books in series I've enjoyed.  I started to make a list and it got long fast, so I'm focusing on science fiction and fantasy series this time around, mostly ones read in recent times.  I don't distinguish here between series and trilogies when I’m considering their inclusion.

Tad Williams

Memory, Sorrow and Thorn Series   (The Dragonbone Chair, Stone of Farewell, To Green Angel Tower)   A kitchen boy and a princess fight to keep the lands of Osten Ard from being overrun by evil.  Each book is a great adventure, filled with amazing characters.

The Heart of What Was Lost  Taking place after the events of Memory Sorrow and Thorn, it's a last stand for an implaccable enemy.  It made a terrible people understandable, though never admirable.

The Witchwood Crown  (Last King Of Osten Ard)  The start of a brand new trilogy set in Osten Ard, it takes place 30 years after the first series.  A new young man sets off reluctantly to learn how to be king someday, while the kingdom seems to be crumbling at the edges.

Libba Bray

Gemma Doyle Series   (A Great and Terrible Beauty, Rebel Angels, The Sweet Far Thing)  A young woman in the late 1800's India has to attend a boarding school in England when her mother dies.  There's a history at the school of a dark series of events involving her mother that Gemma feels compelled to investigate.


The Diviners   (The Diviners, Lair of Dreams, Before the Devil Breaks You)  Diviners are mostly teens with abilities like dreamwalking, mind reading, healing, and the art of not being seen in 1920's New York City.  The time period and the styles, music, theater and radio of the day are richly conveyed, while truly ghastly creatures roam even in the daylight hours.

James S. A. Corey

The Expanse Series by James S.A. Corey (Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck)    (Leviathan Wakes, Caliban’s War, Abbadon’s Gate, Cibola Burn, Nemesis Games, Babylon's’ Ashes, Persepolis Rising)

In the future, the solar system is fully inhabited, with populations on Earth, Mars, the outer planets and "The Belt."   Some live well while others barely have air and water.  Add to this an alien intelligent "virus" being nurtured as a weapon.

Samantha Shannon

The Bone Season Series  (The Bone Season, The Mime Order, The Song Rising)  

Paige Mahoney works in a future London underground of clairvoyants of varying abilities who are hunted and harvested.

Erika Johansen

Queen of the Tearling  (Queen of the Tearling, Invasion of the Tearling, The Fate of the Tearling)  

Kelsea lives and trains in a hidden forest to become Queen of a fierce and brutal society.

Unleash the Kraaken!, I Mean, Crochet, Ho Ho Ho

When I recently reorganized my yarn by brand, I also pulled out all the Christmas yarns I bought last year, in some odd, unexplainable frenzy.  It's like I bought every type I found, at least a few.   I was thinking now's the time to get actual projects going with them, and if I needed more of something, maybe it would be out there again.

I have 6 skeins of Red Heart Super Saver "Mistletoe" and thought I could make a throw with them, no idea of the size.  I started making granny squares and  really like them.

My keen idea was to make as many squares as I could from the skeins, then think about adding another row of a matching color or colors if I thought I'd like it.

 Next thing you know, there I was out shopping with a square in my pocket to see if I could find a match in something like the Caron One Pounder.  Lots of room for edges, right. Better yet, I found Red Heart Super Saver Jumbo in White which matches perfectly and lightens up the color scheme.  I really like the addition.

Let's get those projects going, you say!  I have seen more Bernat Handicrafter Holidays Cotton Yarn out there, and could get more of that one.  I wanted to try it out first, and the 12 oz big skeins seemed like an amount you'd want to base a blanket on.  But, can you make an afghan from cotton yarn?  Some say yes, some say no, but only one site showed an afghan using it.   Others dismiss cotton yarn as "kitchen yarn" and "dishcloth yarn."   Eek, like I'm going to make a thousand dishcloths from that big skein.  Or, whoo hoo, a pencil cup cover.  The placemats I've seen aren't too bad, but again, a waste of all that Christmasy colored yarn.  I am really liking working with the cotton.

I'm using Attic 24's Granny Stripe Afghan pattern, and I have two other colors I could be striping in, maybe should be striping in.  But, I love the cotton Mistletoe so much.  It is pretty, works nicely (best on the Boye rubber handled ones--metal and plastic hooks sort of caught on the yarn and were hard to pull through).    It is soft and pretty.  At first I thought I stripe in a red and white with silver metallics every fourth row.  They're also the Bernat Handicrafter and are cotton, but I just kept going.  We shall see how far the first skein gets me.  I'm just on row 6, but I love it.

I've been meaning to try the granny stripe for quite awhile, and it really is a pleasure to work along the rows.  I did take the measurement of another site 164 chains to begin rather than the 239 (?) Attic 24 has.  It's plenty wide.  We'll see how long it ends up.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Board Game Word Find


C O N N E C T F O U R S V D O 
I N C B E U L C T W O Q T U T 
R B C A K C R X K R I P I P J 
P I C T I O N A R Y A K U K R 
S N U T B K S Y Q N H N S O W 
D N A L S I N E D D I B R O F 
M O E E S V K E W O J R U D Z 
O I C S X J M S G V O C P I M 
N T N H D I C E I H M M L X J 
O C E I C I T A M R K K A I B 
P E U P N A Y A T Z E E I T N 
O F Q F R H H C F A E J V B X 
L R E T J K H E C P N M I A M 
Y E S B R E N N O S A C R A C 
O P Q A E L B B A R C S T L V 
            Word List

Arkham Horror
Betrayal At House On The Hill
Connect Four
Forbidden Island
Trivial Pursuit
Yahtzee (Spelled incorrectly 
within the Wordfind Yatzee)
Printable Word List 
without the graphics 

Arkham Horror
Betrayal At House On The Hill
Connect Four
Forbidden Island
Trivial Pursuit
Yahtzee  (Spelled incorrectly within the Wordfind Yatzee)