Wednesday, August 31, 2016

W.I.P. Wednesday

I know, I know, I know!!  I seriously said I would NOT start another project until I finished my only remaining Work-In-Progress (WIP) - the Around The World Afghan.

However....I popped into Michael's to get a Prisma colored pencil sharpener (which they didn't have by the way) and stopped dead in my tracks, when I saw this beautiful display of new yarn called Caron Cakes.  Later I found out these are a Michael's exclusive.  I also found out, they are apparently highly sought after and highly coveted so I must have hit the store at the right time.

Oh my goodness - the colors were beautiful and the cakes are a good size (383 yards compared to Caron's Simply Soft at 250 yards).  The names are lovely (like Cherry Chip, Lilac Frosting, Funfetti, Rainbow Sprinkles, etc).  To top it off - it was on sale...Buy 2, get 1 Free and I had a 20% off coupon for all items, including sale items!  How could I pass that up?

Well...the hardest part was deciding on the color - so many choices (18 different color combos in all).  I LOVE purple so was drawn to that. But, I had to think....IF and I meant IF I bought any, what would I make?  I decided to make an afghan for my friend Susan (I have never made one for her before) - it would be a good Christmas present, right?  

So...some of it just so happened to fall into my shopping cart. I chose Rainbow Sprinkles because (a) I know that is what my friend would like and (b) I didn't know what pattern I would use and this seemed the most versitle.

So....I get home and start scanning Ravelry for a desired pattern.  I found several I liked but decided to give the Virus Blanket a try.  I wonder why it is called that?  I digress....

So, I immediatly had to start the blanket to see how the yarn would work.  It is very easy to work with and it is really soft - this is going to be a very comfy blanket when done. 

Now....I have only started it and the very first cake I used, started out with orange in the center (always pull from the center) and I was going along and it changed to red (lovely colors - so bright and pretty) - I was through about the 2nd round of red and had to tug to get the yarn to come out and I pulled out this chunk of orange - all my itself and not connected to anything - almost like they said "oops, we meant to put this in there" and then put it in at the last minute.  Very odd.  Oh well, I just set it aside for now.  I hope the other cakes don't have something like that and it was just a fluke on that one particular cake of yarn.  I guess we will see soon enough because my Around the World Blanket is hibernating now, until I finish this, which I think will work up pretty fast.

What do you think so far?

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Monday, August 29, 2016

Upcoming Movies

Note to self:

Here are some upcoming movies I want to see:

The Light Between Oceans - Sep 2
Sully - Sep 9
Bridget Jones Baby - Sep 16
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children - Sep 30
Girl on a Train - Oct 7
A Madea Halloween - Oct 21

There may be more later but these are the ones I can think of at the moment

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Saturday, August 27, 2016

The Art of Gift Receiving

Recently, I had a life lesson in how one should properly receive a gift.

As the gift-giver, I was disappointed in the gift-recipients actions - so disappointed, in fact, that if I could have gotten away with sneaking out with the gift I have given, I would have.  I would rather save it give it to someone who I feel would actually appreciate it (or at least seem like they do).

Things one should NOT do, when receiving a gift:

  • The moment your guests arrives to your party or shower, with your gift, do NOT say....I'll go ahead and open your gift.  It gives the impression of a "gift grab" - as if you don't care if they came or not, as long as you get a gift.  First, offer them a refreshment or a seat - thank them for coming, make them feel like you are actually glad that they came and set your gift aside (perhaps on a table) to be opened later, when the other guests have all arrive.  Do NOT deprive all your guest from seeing what you received. That is part of the fun, they enjoying seeing your gifts and seeing you happy.  If you don't open gifts in front of them, they don't get to enjoy that.  (The only exclusion is a wedding...there is not enough time at a wedding to open gifts, they will be opened later by the happy couple, but if it is a shower or engagement party, there is time...allow your guest to oooh and aaah.
  • When you are opening a gift, smile and say thank you, make NICE comments on the gift you have received.  Say things like "It is beautiful", "This was on my registry, I'm so happy you picked it out", "I love the color", "This is so cute", "This is perfect for my baby's room", "This will be nice to take on my honeymoon.", "This is really pretty", etc. 
  • Do NOT open the bag, peek in and set it aside as if the contents are undesirable.  Do NOT say "I already have this", Do NOT say "I didn't need more baby clothes", do NOT say "Ugh, not more diapers, just what I don't need - ugh", Do NOT toss your gift aside as if it were a pack of peanuts.  Look at your gift, even if it isn't your taste or what you need or want, be appreciated that the person went out of there way to get you a gift and spent their good, hard-earned money especially for you.
  • If you receive a hand-made item (such as a crochet baby blanket, or hand-knitted gloves and scarf), do NOT say "Oh - another crocheted baby blanket" or "I prefer store bought gloves".  Do you realize that if a person made you a gift with their own two hands, it is because they thought you were worth investing their time and money and skills.  They wanted you to have something unique and special, something that no one else could give you.  They spent lots of money buying the raw materials needed, they used their skill (that you as the recipient may not have) and spent hours and hours and hours making something special just for you!  Show a little appreciation.  It may not be your style or it may not be practical for you, but the person that made it for you, cared enough about you to make it - at least respect that and be grateful for that. 
  •  Do NOT forget to send a Thank You Card.  Again, your guests spent their hard-earn money and spent time and energy finding a gift just for you.  Let them know you appreciate it.  Please don't send a generic "Thanks for the gift" (which give the appearance that you don't even know what they gave you), try to be a little specific, such as "Thanks for the lovely frame, our wedding picture looks great in it".  I know sometimes you have a lot of cards to write, but you don't have to write them all at once - spread it over a few days if you have to.  However, at least send a card, even if it is a generic Thank You.  It is better than not sending a card at all.
I recall once going to a baby shower for a friend (not a close friend but close enough to get invited to the shower), I knew she was having a girl and I made (what I thought) was a darling little crochet dress for her.  Anyone can get something off the baby registry but since clothes were on there, I thought I would make something cute and different.  Everyone I showed it too, thought it was sweet and pretty and that the mom-to-be would love it.  She didn't.  How did I know?  The look of horror on her face when she opened it.  As if to say...this is hideous, and it isn't from Neiman Marcus or Macy's and isn't sophisticated enough for my daughter.  Later, I got a generic "thank you for the gift" card.  But at least she sent a Thank You card.

More recently, I gave a different mom-to-be a crochet blanket, she didn't even bother unfolding it when she opened it to get a better view.  She just said "Uh - ANOTHER crochet blanket" - she had only received one before that (a lovely yellow one who I had no idea who made it because she opened the gifts the second we walked in the door).

It just makes me wonder, what do these people do with these apparently unwanted homemade gifts?  If they don't want them, I'd be glad to take them back and give them to someone that would appreciate it.  I suppose they end up in the trash or at goodwill (at least if they go to goodwill maybe someone will get it and appreciate it).

I don't expect praises and jumping up and down and kissing at my feet, but just a general overall expression of happiness and gratitude.  I don't think that is asking for much, do you?

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Saturday, August 20, 2016

I Didn't Have Time To Pray - Poetry Break

I heard this poem many, many years ago and it has always stuck with me.

I Didn't Have Time

I got up early one morning
And rushed right into the day!
I had so much to accomplish
That I didn't have time to pray.

Problems just tumbled about me,
And heavier came each task.
"Why doesn't God help me?" I wondered.
He answered, "You didn't ask!"

I tried to come into God's presence;
I used all my keys at the lock.
God gently and lovingly chided,
"Why, child, you didn't knock!"

I wanted to see joy and beauty,
But the day toiled on, gray and bleak.
I wondered why God didn't show me.
He said, "But you didn't seek."

I woke up early this morning,
And paused before entering the day.
I had so much to accomplish
That I had to take time to pray!

By Grace L. Naessens
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Monday, August 8, 2016

Happy Birthday Beautiful Soul.

On this day in history - one of the most beautiful souls was created and sent to Earth to eventually be with me, I know some people don't think dogs have souls but those people are wrong.  God created them, Heaven would not be complete without dogs in it.  I know that one day I will be reunited with this beautiful soul.  I miss him every single day - my heart still aches for him but I know we will be together again.

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