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Discussion Starter · #2,381 ·
I’m taking a short (in theory) break. The living room is indeed clearing out. The floor is showing through and the next challenge will be to clear the tables. I like finally having all the embellishments, floss, various types of thread, WIPs, kits, and tools all in one place. If nothing else, it makes me more aware of how much I actually have. Too much.

Despite that, I’ve placed one last order. 123 Stitch finally has my favorite fabrics back in stock. An antique white that isn’t yellowish (if I ordered the right one - lol), and two light neutrals that also don’t have a yellow cast. White chocolate, a light ecru, and French lace, that lightly leans to beige. It’s lighter than it looks on the screen and turns out to be a wonderful color. I ordered a large cut of each in 16 count, a case of get it while I can. I have plenty of my other go to color, a pale gray, and it doesn’t come in 16 count. I added a few more of the treasure braid colors and that is all I can think of to buy. I should not need one thing more for the 2022 stitching. So there. Remind me of that as needed. I do reserve the right to retail celebration of my birthday and major holidays if I need an excuse.
 

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Today I dropped off all the things from the coat drive: Just 8 baby/kid coats, but that's not too surprising considering most of my classmates are young and single-ish, then for the homeless charity, 44 pairs of socks, 6 hats, 7 pairs of gloves,, All out of my car!!! YAY!!!!

Saturday was my last day at the VA clinic, so I filled up their staff lounge freezer with a bunch of TV dinners for all the nights and holidays when the cafeteria isn't open and now the whole top shelf of my deep freezer is empty! (But the rest a wreck...)

Gifts are everywhere waiting to be wrapped, but right now I am about to run out to JA to get some yarn needles because mine are hiding (in their spiffy new case, so at least they are all together...is that a win?) and I'll return the extra Christmas crackers to TJMaxx nearby while I'm at it. Speaking of which...

Zhoen: Christmas Cracker like these: Amazon.com : british christmas crackers ? Interesting find. I know what they are but never saw any in my area in the US. Then again, I don't bother looking for them so...
Yes, like those, but if you look at that page, you'll see there are some for $7.99/6, but they say "no snap"... which means that they aren't "real" crackers. The "snap" is the best part... nothing says Christmas like the smell of gunpowder!!! The ones I am keeping are Tom Smith brand, which you can see farther down the page, but not those exact ones-- different wrappers. I try to do them every Christmas, but you have to know where to look and usually they work out to about $2-$2.50 each... these work out to $.67 each. SOLD!!!!

Finished making a neckline facing for the green velour top. I would likely wear a scarf around the neck anyway so it didn't have to be perfect. Just need to hem the sleeves and bottom.
I am in awe of all of you who can sew actual clothing. That's something I say I'll learn to do some day...

Ok, out into the night I go... I need the needles to finish the BayMax hat for DD18... pieces are done, just need to finish it off...
 

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Zhoen - I think you'll like the "Victorian Farm Christmas" mini-series (just 3 episodes - look up Peter Ginn, Alex Langlands, and Ruth Goodman if you're interested). They make (and discuss) Christmas Crackers, at least the Victorian style of Christmas Crackers.

Didn't get as much done on my grab-bag afgan tonight. Oh well.

It's gotten chilly recently, although Thursday is supposed to get up close to 60*. Thankfully, I've found the perfect combination of blankets to keep warm at night when I sleep (I tend to keep my thermostat on the cool side since I have electric heat). I do have my down comforter readily available, especially if the power goes out due to storms. Then again, given I live in an apartment complex (and near the municipal center where the fire department, EMS, and police are), the power company tends to work on getting our power back on relatively quickly due to the higher concentration of people/homes.
 

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You guys are all so much more productive than me. I love seeing and hearing about all your projects.

I think I did 2 pinecones today. They get repetitive and I lose track. At any rate, I have 4 left to do. I should get most or all of the 7th done from the first thread ball, so I worried about a shortage for nothing.

I also figured out knitting a cable again. The pattern said to KNIT 3 for the cables, but I couldn't make that work. I hauled out my trusty old Reader's Digest craft book, which informed me I needed to SLIP 3 which is very different than knitting. Once I got the pattern corrected, things went better. I hated the cable needle I was using, so went to Amazon to find a different style I like better, but decided that was dumb and I should learn to use what I have, so I did. Glad I did. I'm doing fine with it now. Save money, less stuff in the storage space. When I get my headband knitted, I'm adding buttons to button my masks to. I have trouble keeping them over my ears some days.

Textile Sleeve Headgear Tree Red
 

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Long lines everywhere today. Traffic, too. Spent nearly 3 hours waiting for my car, it needed more repairs than expected. Forgot to grab the bag of yarn on the way out. But I did get a free car wash. I did not get all the errands done, and did not spend much time frivolously shopping. I got one storage box at Michael's and a couple stamp pads marked down to .19 each. Target was awful, from having to walk a mile to get to the dairy dept, to the poor selection on the grocery shelves, to a very young new cashier who had to call the manager to complete my purchase (not her fault it wasn't ringing up correctly). I was in there way too long and didn't even get what I went for.

Really looking forward to finishing the quilting this week.
 

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Z - sewing is no longer an inexpensive hobby but I was gifted quite a lot of fabric from women who realized they were not going to use up their fabric stash. So I'm making the best of it. One main advantage I find now is that since I understand garment construction I am not afraid to disassemble a pre-made garment to modify it to fit me or my needs. Shorten or take in or let out or add pockets for example. Maybe only 1/4 or 1/3 of the garment needs to be adjusted or re-fitted and all that time and expense of sewing the rest of the garment from scratch is saved.
Charity newsletter said after the last drop-off event they were able to distribute over 1,200 items to recipients. They still want hats, scarves and blankets. Working on a red child's hat (last of the skein). I think I can get another "camo" hat from that skein. Pulled a skein of gray to follow that. Fun having a lot of different yarn choices to play with.
 

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Woke up achy, arthritis flaring up I am pretty sure. Ugh. New electric blanket coming this week and that should help.

It's sunny and I will get some quilting done, can't say how much. Doing one block at a time. I'm itching to get back to piece work.

Got one christmas swap sent yesterday have to get another out very soon. Dance troupe party is a little over a week off, I think I will do the gift bags this weekend. Be nice to get that out of my closet.

Zhoen, there are easy/starter sewing patterns for clothing. If you're going to need scrubs those are some of the easiest things to sew. Mostly blocky shapes, straight stitching, nothing fancy. And if you decide you like it you might even turn it into a little side gig making tops for co-workers.
 

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I made an appointment to get my COVID booster. It's set up for 2 weeks from now. At least it's on my way home from work. I tried doing the walk-in at the clinic on campus today but the line was too long, mostly because the clinic allows for walk-ins.

Grab-bag afgan is coming along slowly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2,391 ·
I haven’t done much today except put together a grocery order and kill time. There’s little on sale I want this week, but I need to get things for the two gift bags I’m making. I’m doing food this year - nuts in shell, cheese ball/Brie, chocolates - that sort of thing. And a couple of tins of sardines. The friend who may show up any time says he knows it’s crazy, but sardines are one of his favorite things. I think they’re disgusting, but whatever. I’ll also swing by the bank for the rest of my Christmas “shopping.”

I need to carry on with the usual tasks, but it’s hard to get started when it’s this late and I haven’t yet. I’ll do at least a little.

last night I did more frogging than stitching, but I’ve finally decided how I want to do the ornaments. Instead of mixing thread and metallic, I’m going all metallic, and using a single color on the individual baubles. It should go quickly now.
 

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DC, some people really love that funky fishy salty flavor. I have found uses for sardines but I can't eat them out of the tin. Food gift baskets sound nice, and useful.

Got a few more blocks quilted, by my calculations I am at 95%.

I have all the blue and woodsy fabric sitting out for DH's quilt. I was hoping he'd notice it and say something, like whether he liked it or not. Well today he asked what I was going to do with it, and if it was for me or someone else. I said "It's not for me, wolves and deer aren't my thing". Still not sure if he likes it.

Sorted through the various bags, and now I have an entire shoebox of christmas treats, candy, cocoa packets, etc. Most for gift exchanges. I have two Secret Santas, and DH has one.

Got cheese crackers in the oven finally.
 

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I also figured out knitting a cable again.
Now see, THAT actually IS something I'm actually going try to learn next year... I gave it a little go before the shutdown, but gonna try again.
I am not afraid to disassemble a pre-made garment to modify it to fit me or my needs. Shorten or take in or let out or add pockets for example.
See, that's the only sewing I really DO do... growing up poor-ish (relative first-world term...) I realized that I could get thrift shop clothes for cheap and make them over. You are right, fabric is EXPENSIVE.

If you're going to need scrubs those are some of the easiest things to sew. Mostly blocky shapes, straight stitching, nothing fancy.
I admit, the thought has crossed my mind. It depends on the rules of where I end up working, but I like the idea of festive fabrics for different times of year.

I’m doing food this year - nuts in shell, cheese ball/Brie, chocolates - that sort of thing. And a couple of tins of sardines. The friend who may show up any time says he knows it’s crazy, but sardines are one of his favorite things. I think they’re disgusting, but whatever.
I love the idea of food gifts-- especially if they are thoughtfully put together by someone who knows you!

I ended up NOT going out to JA last night, the needle case and yarn needles resurfaced at the last moment in a proper holiday miracle! So I finished the BayMax had and DD18 has been wearing it about non-stop up until dinner because it has dangles and she didn't want to get gravy on it. (This is surprisingly sensible coming from that one!!!) Anyway, that is one WIP/UFO done.

This morning I returned the extra Christmas crackers and some glitter glue and then ended up spending almost exactly the same amount at the grocery getting baking supplies 🤣 The new "stash items" (food) take up less space than the old ones... but once everybody eats the cookies, then THEY might get bigger 🤣

Dinner tonight used up a few more of our sad old potatoes... almost there getting rid of those... plus the last of the Hawaiian rolls that have been haunting the freezer since my niece graduated back in June... good riddance!
 

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I get most of my fabric at thrift stores, unless I need something specific. I sometimes make stuff over too, as long as the fabric isn't too worn. I'm well supplied ATM though. I have a ton of sewing tools, notions, buttons, zippers etc I've accumulated over the yrs secondhand, which saves me a ton of money. A lot of my buttons and zippers are salvaged from worn out clothes. I haven't bought either in a retail store in probably 30 yrs or more.

Pajamas are a good thing for beginner sewing projects. A lot of sleepwear patterns are simple, and nobody sees the mistakes when you're done.

Two pinecones left to tat. Then I might do some snowflakes. Those shouldn't take long.

YouTube has some good videos for learning to cable. I decided I really like the J shaped cable needle I previously hated. I can hang it from the neck of my shirt when it's not needed, and it doesn't fall all over the floor like the other style. I finished knitting the headband. It's a quick project. Just have to find a couple buttons for it to get it completely done. Then I'll test drive it to see if I want to make more.

I called today to make an appointment for some routine health care, only to be told all elective procedures are canceled till at least 12/27. I asked if it was due to covid. Answer: Yes. I said, "So much for our freedoms, eh?" That led to an entire tirade from the person I was talking to. It's fair to say there seems to be a large percentage of people in the medical field who are completely fed up with antivaxxers, and who can blame them?
 

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I think the hardest part of cabling is figuring out how to deal with 3 needles when I only have 2 hands, but I figured that out, too. Too bad I won't remember the next time I need it.

I learned a little mnemonic device for cabling the right-leaning half of the cable. "Be right back" meaning the cable needle goes to the back when stitching the rightward bend. By elimination then, the left bend is knit with the cable needle to the front. It helps me unconfuse cabling a little.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2,396 ·
For the short time in my life I knitted I liked cables best. I thought they were fun to do, easier than they look, and the result is impressive. Lol. I’ve only used J shaped holders.
 

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cables are beyond me! yes they were saying on the news that here at least 4k of people died because of delayed procedures cus of taking care of covid patients. or they got bumped on the list like transplants etc. or they didn't want to risk hospitals.
dcompton love the ornaments. I never have made xmas crackers ..easy to buy lol they even had halloween crackers at dollar store this year and guess what xmas jokes in it lol but $2 for 8 was fun. gave out the rest to late trick n treaters.

sunny here today ..actually tues? was record heat for this time of year. up to 70s in some places. thought it was warm. today sun is showing all the dirt and cat hair. pissed cus the dishwasher yet again didn't drop the soap so have to run it again. not doing much housework though. went though gifts and need to do library runs. and toy drop off.
funny you know how I bought more yarn then I was showing friend my caron cake stash in the armoire opened door and what fell out a skein of same colour lol

still working on the cardigan. no xmas stuff up yet maybe weekend. dh bought out the playmobil back to the future advent calendar so setting it up..the paper background of it the building etc. the poles with electric wire. there is not much you don't know lol cus they show what you get each day. so far 1985 marty and guitar.

off to bookkeeping and get that done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2,398 ·
SD - Once you get the hang of cables, you’ll zip along with them.

If you remember, I got a nice 4’ lighted tree last tree at a please-just-take-this-out-of-our-store price, $10, and some equally cheap stuff for it. It was a moment of temporary insanity. I haven’t really decorated for Christmas in years. Why did I think this year would be different? It’s in the attic unopened and will stay in the attic. Maybe I’ll put up some of the holiday cross stitches. Or not. I’m really not into decorating. I have all the stuff now for the two gift bags I’m making and got the cash for everyone else, so that’s almost done. The set of bags I got came with a funky smell so I need to run those through the dryer, maybe with a dryer sheet and see if I can get that out.

It’s a ridiculous 79* here today, but I love having the house open again. It feels more like Easter is coming than Christmas.
 

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It's 70 here this afternoon. Dreading what the end of the month will bring. I packed up the fall decor today.

DC a small tree with lights would look pretty on your porch.

I finished the quilting ~3pm. Ta-dah! Now I have 28 feet of binding to cut and sew.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2,400 ·
It’s a day for big finishes! CH - Congrats on finishing the quilting! And I finished the flower sal. The parts post at midnight Friday in the UK, but that’s 6:00 pm Thursday here. I’ve ironed it and now I’ll wait overnight for it to dry thoroughly and get a photo tomorrow. I feel like I’ve been working on it forever. Sunday information, layouts, and borders will post for next year’s, free again.

Peppermint Purple’s posted today. She has finally loosened up and is giving lots of options plus the freedom to basically do whatever we want with it. She’s the one who annoyed me so much with her insistence that it be her way. I got bored with the one this year and abandoned it. Next year’s will continue the same little rectangle format. Right now I don’t think I’ll do it. I have lots of other blackwork patterns I would rather do.

I said there were no more patterns for me - the free sal I planned doesn’t count. However I’m still thinking about the Long Dog Sampler Egyptian one. It would be a change of pace and I still think it looks like fun. It’s a monochromatic one but I would do it in color. Maybe.
 
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