Ellen Gormley is on YouTube!

This month is just flying by! I have a feeling the whole year is going to at this rate. So many fun and exciting things I want to share – but all in due time! 🙂

Today, I want to share a wonderful new resource for every crocheter – Ellen Gormley now has her own Youtube channel! Ellen is a phenomenal teacher, she was the featured crocheter on The Knit & Crochet Now TV show for many years. She’s taught several online classes, edited Crochet! magazine and has even written books. There’s no doubt Ellen knows crochet and she knows how to teach. Ellen will continue to grow her channel with new stitches and techniques – be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss any new videos!

Ellen also launched her own newsletter and a new website. Be sure to click on over and sign-up today. There are many new adventures on the horizon –  be sure to check back often for updates!

 

Happy New Year!

Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links.

It’s a new year, time for a new project! Are you looking for a unique wedding or anniversary gift you’d like to make? If so, this is just the pattern for you! My Celebration Plaid Afghan’s colors are plotted out based on special dates. The colors and spacing in the afghan above are based on my own wedding anniversary. How fun is that?

To get the instructions, hop on over to Annie’s and download  Crochet World’s February 2018 issue today!

Be Happy It Happened

Every year I struggle with Christmas. The time right before Thanksgiving till the day after Christmas can be agonizingly long. I hate all the commercialism that we are constantly bombarded with, but you know what I really dislike? I dislike the empty places at the table. I miss my family. I miss the laughter of kids. I miss the building of excitement. I miss the joy of Christmas. I miss the joy of just being together.

It began with the loss of my grandpa right before Thanksgiving many years ago. He was my only dad and Thanksgiving was his very favorite day. He used to tell me, “How can you not love a day that all you have to do is be thankful?” He’d then tell me he loved me and was thankful for me. To say I can’t wait to see him again is a huge understatement.

Through the years many other very much loved family members have passed on. My grandma was just as amazing as grandpa. She did her best to teach me to be a lady (sorry, grandma 😉) and took good care of me and my siblings.

My hubby’s family was hit hard by loss, too. Him and his sister are  pretty much all they really have left. Yet, my sweet hubby still manages to smile, be joyful, and welcome the holidays.

Our boys are grown men and both are married. They have bigger families to share with now so their seats are often empty, too.

(Remember when I lamented about no blogs for moms with adult kids? Well, mine changes that! We now have our “space” too.)

The Lord gave me a word for this year and that word has been joy. Clearly, it’s not a concept I grasp very well but I think I’ve found the key. When I focus on me and what I think I don’t have, I forget to look at what I do have. When I start actually counting how many ways I’m blessed my sorrow turns to joy. Being thankful is the key to being joyful. I’m just sorry it took me so long to finally figure it out!

One of my sons shared this a few years ago, “Don’t be sad it’s over, be happy it happened.” That really was a God thing because he had no idea how hard I was struggling at the time. It was as if he turned the light on in a very dark room. Since then my prayer has been, “Please, Lord, help me to see things the way you do.” It’s been an incredible journey since I first started praying that prayer.

My new word from the Lord for this year is patience. Pray I survive! 😊 😳
We consider the “P” word a pretty dangerous word to utter in our household and would never consider praying for it, yet, there it is.

Have a blessed Christmas, my friends, and remember to be thankful.

Shalom

Paul’s Afghan

I made this lovely afghan for my brother Paul. You know you must be pretty special if I’m willing to spend weeks working on a gift just for you! The colors are ones he chose. I really enjoy the light to dark play on color.

I adore crocheted afghans that look like quilts. I especially love ones that use up leftover yarn! I hate to sew (I can but don’t enjoy it) so a crocheted quilt is the next best idea!

And, yes, this puppy is HUGE! 🙂

What is your favorite crochet quilt pattern?

Colorado Leaf-Peeping!

We missed leaf-peeping this year due to our trip to France. We had a very early snow in the high country that ended the colors pretty quickly. So, I’ve had to settle for looking at photos from years past.

This is one of the most vibrant aspens we saw last year! Growing up we mostly saw pine trees, the forest fires and beetle kill have quickly changed Colorado’s high country landscape. We see a lot more aspen trees – they thrive in the higher elevations. The average lifespan for them in flatland is only 13 years.

It’s always fun to stumble upon a pretty waterful while leaf-peeping!

More lovely golds!

See how the aspen are starting to fill in where the pine trees are dying?

Pockets of gold everywhere!

This view is our all-time favorite place to end our leaf-peeping tour. It’s Panorama Point, at 8,2000 feet above sea level you can see mountain ranges from over 100 miles away! It’s one of the most breathtaking views in Colorado!

Finished!

I love these quick knits! This yarn was extra bumpy — those aren’t dropped stitches, it’s just the way the yarn worked up. Once blocked it should even out and the loops will be less apparent.

This photo shows more of the true color of this gorgeous hand-dyed yarn!  Isn’t it fun what you can do with just 300 yards of fiber?

Knitting Again!

I really wish the colors were more true — they are very saturated jewel tones. I love to do mindless knitting when I’m between jobs, it’s a great way to relax. One of my very favorite items to make are cowls — I have a closet full! 🙂 I love wearing them too! They are a fantastic way to add a pop of color to a t-shirt and dress them up. Since that’s pretty much all I own, cowl’s are a must!

My standard cowl is simply 40 stitches on size 8 circular needles. I knit every row, so no keeping count of stitches! It’s a wonderful (and colorful!) way to use any single skein yarns you have!

Be Kind

I left Facebook back in January due to the anger and arguing and haven’t been back. I  dislike that we are no longer kind or civil to each other. Whatever happened to, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it?” I think it’s time we reclaimed our kindness to one another. Jesus loves you and so do I.  Happy Tuesday!

Reset!

Sometimes we need to just hit the reset button and take a timeout. That’s what my husband and I did a few weeks ago. We took a trip to Nice, France. It was a wonderful trip! The French people were so kind and welcoming! I thought I’d share a few of my favorite photos.

Since I live in the Colorado Rockies you know I couldn’t resist the alps! Even if our view was flying over them! They are gorgeous!

How cool is it that Nice had a miniature Statue of Liberty on the  Promenade des Anglaise?

It was hard to keep from walking into people because all we wanted to do was look up and around! The details on the buildings were mind-blowing! Many of these buildings are centuries old.

And the doors! Wow!

I love the rounded architecture on so many of the buildings. The colors were classic soft Mediterranean palates.

We even managed a quick visit to Monaco and Menton! The whole Riviera is a delightful mix of cultures. Most of the coast was once owned by Italy and its influence is very apparent in a charming way.

Times, they are a changing! I loved the lavender ice cream (the pink scoop) and the jasmine ice cream was divine (the cream scoop). Jasmine ice cream is an Iranian treat. There is a heavy Middle Eastern influence in the food now offered in Nice.

All in all, it was a fantastic trip that was refreshing to the soul!