I keep meaning to blog, but not sure I had anything of great interest to write about, so it will just be a few items to catch up.
My knitting group at church has a total of 861 hats so far for this year. We are way ahead of our total from this time last year and the year before. We also have 31 baby hats and 12 scarves. Not very many scarves so I'm going to work on making scarves instead of hats, but they take longer so I guess that is why people prefer to make hats.
I'm using the leftover yarn to crochet dish cloths. My goal is to make over 200 and donate them to a local food pantry to put them in the Christmas baskets. I made 100 last year and most of them right before, so I'd like to double that and make them as I can and also use up the yarn. I try to make them with nice colors so they don't look like leftovers.
My personal goal is to also make things for anyone who has a baby at my church. So far I've cross stitched some baby bibs and I have crocheted a bib and crocheted a baby blanket. I feel that although this isn't a huge thing, I would hope that the parents realize that people in the church do care.
DH planted his tomatoes, bell peppers, and herbs last week. We had one day of sunshine since then and rain almost every day. Hopefully the plants won't drown before they get a good start.
We took a day bus trip to two small towns here in Illinois. One is Moonshine that boasts a population of 2. Apparently this couple bought this small general store a number of years ago and started making Moonshine burgers and it has become a tourist destination. After sampling their burger, I can see why the locals come to get one -- nice thick burger made with quality beef and cooked perfectly. It was a delight. We then visited Casey which is a small town that is famous for its oversized items like a mailbox, pencil, knitting needles, crochet hook, rocking chair, and golf tee. It made for a good day trip and we toured things we have not seen before.
It's damp and dreary so I'm looking forward to our soup for supper tonight. Since I was going to chop vegetables for stir fry last night, I decided to chop a few others and made Italian wedding soup. I like to fix soup the day before and then put it in the fridge and heat it the next day. For some reason it seems to taste a little better the second day. It will be at least two meals and I used some of the tomatoes and chicken broth I canned last fall.
Viewing the 'Crocheting/Knitting' Category
I keep meaning to blog, but not sure I had anything of great interest to write about, so it will just be a few items to catch up.
Last week my church knitting group was featured on the local news as part of their weekly segment "Spirit of Central Illinois" which features people doing nice things. Here is the URL:
I was featured as was my Pastor as spokespersons for the group. No one else wanted to talk and to be honest, I was scared to death, but the reporter did a good job of not making me look stupid.
So far we have made 458 hats for 2019. A guy at church asked me today where we get the yarn for our hats and scarves and I said most of us buy our own and he was shocked. I said we do get some donations of yarn here and there. He was really surprised.
Usually when we get some sort of publicity we have new people wanting to join and that's cool. Hope that is the case this time too.
What an interesting week!
Monday I went to Kroger to pick up my prescription. It is the one medicine my insurance doesn't cover and they have the cheapest price. I have a coupon from the manufacturer for money off, but still have to pay over $250 for it. I had to wait a bit so I decided to pick up a couple of things while I waited and holy cow, did things get crazy. I bought my items and took them to the car and came back and in that short bit of time, the parking lot went from calm to crazy. People were circling looking for places. I went back in to get my prescription and while I waited, there were people who would get a card and almost run, throwing things in the cart. Really? Nothing was happening yet weather wise. The Polar Vortex wasn't even on our doorstep yet! Egad!
DH and I did a few errands on Tuesday and came home and stayed there until Thursday. Tuesday night the weather got colder and Wednesday wa the extreme below zero wind chills. Fortunately we did not lose power or have pipes freeze. We were happy to be home and safe and felt sorry for those who had to get out in it.
I've been looming and crocheting trying to use up yarn that I have purchased for the hats and scarves I'm making. DH and I cleaned house on Wednesday so that kept us busy and gave us some exercise too. DH normally goes to the mall to walk, but he didn't want to get out with it being so cold. So, not the same exercise, but better than sitting around.
We have been enjoying our Netflix subscription. I turned to DH last night and said who would have thought 20 years ago we would "stream" movies in our house. I remember thinking the VCR and tapes was pretty darn cool years ago and now you just sit home and the movies come to you.
We did spend some money today. We took our cars to the place where you wash them yourself. We did both cars to get the salt and grime off until the next go round. We also went to a flea market and I found some things to use as Christmas gifts and they were either 50% or 75% off. Last year I collected lots of little items and wrapped them up individually and gave them to a friend so she had 25 gifts to unwrap from December 1st to the 25th. She really liked it so I wanted to do it again this year. I don't want to give her junk just to give her a gift, but things she might use. She likes Curirier and Ives stuff and I found two trivets that were still in the containers. That will be two gifts and she can use them on her table for hot stuff. I found a box of Christmas mugs like new and it was 75% off.
I'm still doing the Ibotta thing and it is slow going, but hey, it is free money. I guess doing most of our grocery shopping at Aldi keeps me from cashing in a lot, but we also don't buy a lot of the things they give you cash for.
We had our weekly date night last night. We had gone to the bank and DH doesn't carry money in his wallet, but all those plastic cards like his license and loyalty cards. I saw he had a Cracker Barrel gift card and I suggested he use that when we ate out. He said he didn't think there was much money on it and I said well, whatever it is, it isn't helping him by staying in his wallet and even if it is 50 cents, that 50 cents. We went there and ate and when he ran it through, there was $4.70 on it. For a $22 meal, that was $4.70 he didn't have to spend out of his pocket.
The other day we were watching one of those daily programs where they have snippets of different things to improve your life and this one gal was talking about organizing your pantry. I always perk up when those things come on because my pantry is overcrowded and I clean it out and try to organize it, but it never looks wonderful. Anyway, this gal was talking about getting these containers and doing this and that and when she showed the pantry, there were like 4 or 5 things on a shelf. Really? Yeah, it looked tidy, but not a whole lot of cooking going on there. That's how she wanted it to look. I'm going to say it out loud, my pantry will not be looking like that.
I saw an article claiming January was the best the DOW had since 1987. I'm not really sure of that, but guess we will see when we get our financial statement.
Awoke this morning to a water main break in our subdivision. As cold as it is, I guess it shouldn't be a shock. We did make it to church, but decided to spend money and eat out since we weren't sure if/when we would get water. We tried a place for breakfast we had never eaten before and it wasn't bad. Not planning on making a habit of it, but it was something different.
We were supposed to get 4-7 inches of snow yesterday and we got a light coat of freezing rain. After last weekend's snow, it was a nice break, but sorry for those who had to be out in the mess south and north of us. We stayed in because we weren't sure how the roads were and we didn't need to get out. Instead of we cleaned house and I pulled some stuff out of the freezer for lunch.
I am trying to use up small amounts of yarn before I start new skeins. There's not enough to a hat or scarf, but I've made a lot of dish cloths as well as small facial tissue holders for one's purse and then two Barbie dresses. My two little friends are going to have quite a wardrobe for their dolls. Maybe I should start playing with my Barbie too. I bought one at a thrift store for 75 cents to use as a model.
Yesterday we received over 9 inches of snow. A neighbor graciously used his new snow blower to clear our driveway. I'm so glad because I was really wondering how that was going to play out. We did get some snow last night and DH and I did manage to clean it off today. I don't want him shoveling much and I am asthmatic so it becomes a worry, but I think we did OK.
Many of the churches cancelled services, but ours didn't. We could get out and go and it was nice after being home yesterday. Not that we had any place to go, but I think sometimes when you can't go somewhere, you just want to go somewhere.
I pulled chili from the freezer for yesterday's lunch and made Italian wedding soup and homemade bread for last night's supper. I will be freezing the rest of the soup for another meal.
Alliecat79 blogged about trying to realize how much stuff was bought. I really understand that because I struggle with this issue, especially when it comes to Mason Jars. I guess I'm an addict. I really like them and in all sizes. I can so I use a lot of them. But I also use them for storage for other things. Friday we went to the thrift stores and there was a brand new case of them, unopened and I am ashamed to admit that temptation was strong. Brand new. Still in the plastic. Jelly Jars with lids and rings. It was only $4.50 which is cheaper than new. But, I'm proud to report other than picking them up to look at them (they were amber and I wasn't sure what color they were), I left them on the shelf. I don't need any more jars and it was silly to even consider buying them.
Besides cooking yesterday, I worked on looming and crocheting. I have bits and pieces of yarn here and there so I made some baby hats to donate to a local agency for preemies, crocheted some dish cloths, and then crocheted a Barbie dress. I also made a regular size hat for my group for church. We have made 252 hats so far for 2019. I have also been making scarves to go along with some of the hats. I won't ever have as many scarves as hats, but it also gives me a break from making hats. I have plenty of yarn, I just hate to waste any of it. So, I don't need to buy any, that's for sure.
I'm supposed to volunteer first thing in the morning at a school, so I'm going to get a pork roast with potatoes and carrots and put it in the Crockpot to put on before I leave. I have an afternoon appointment too so that will make supper easier when I get home. I know many of you are singing the praises of Instant Pots, but I think I'll stick with my Crockpots since I'm retired and really don't have to rush to get supper done.
I blogged earlier about crocheting some clothes for a friend's granddaughter's Barbie. Well, they were a big hit, and it seems the dress that has some glitter to it was a favorite. Seems the Elf on the Shelf even wore it one morning to greet the little girl.
Friday I found two skeins of yarn that had a silver cord running through each of them. One was Christmas red and the other was white. I found them at one of the thrift stores we frequent and the cashier asked me what I was going to use it for and I told her for a Barbie, she took off a dollar so I got both for $3. I made 6 dresses for Barbie and apparently that Elf is going to go "shopping" and surprise our little friend. What a hoot. I guess the lavender dress was not the right color for the elf according to our little friend so hopefully the Christmas colors fill fit the bill. Of course I have taken some verbal abuse from the grandmother asking me if I wanted to keep these clothes and play Barbie. All in good fun.
A few weeks ago I found some baby bibs that can be embroidered so I have been working on them. One of the young ladies at church is expecting her second child and I thought I would finish these and give them to her. My only complaint is who in their right mind would decide to have 5 different shades of pink on a pattern? Egad.
Tomorrow night a friend is coming over for his birthday dinner. He was given the choice of our meeting him some place of his choosing or eating here and he said he really wanted a home cooked meal. So, I need to bake a cake for his birthday and he requested meatloaf. It should be a fun time.
We did spent quite a bit at the thrift stores this week. Well for us we did. I think we spent close to $15. Some of that was for yarn for the hats. Plus the yarn for Barbie clothes. DH found a couple of kids' books he wanted for his personal library. He reads to 5 classes and he likes to keep an assortment besides the ones he get from the library. I'm sure if we had purchased these items at retail, it would have been far more.
I did order a music CD for DH for Christmas. We tried to order it from a local CD place here in town, but he said he couldn't get it. I prefer shopping from brick and mortar, especially if they are small business, to support them. I kept checking Amazon and they finally got the CD in. I had some cash back money on my Discover card so I wound up paying $3.50 for part of the postage. My shopping is completed. Yay!
Like CreditCardFree, I finally got to $20 on Ibotta. It seems to take forever since I don't buy a lot of the stuff they give rebates on.
I found 14 cents in a parking lot yesterday. It goes in the wooden box DH has for change. We usually take the majority of the change in in the summer and apply part of it to Christmas and part of it the home improvement fund.
Haven't posted for awhile. I guess it is because I didn't think I had much to write about. It isn't that I haven't kept busy; I have. Maybe this post isn't exciting either.
Our neighbor is a dichotomy. A couple of weeks ago she posted on Facebook she wanted a part time job...anything...cleaning, secretarial, etc. Then she leaves for a cruise. Just she and her friends. Her family stays home. When she got home, she posted about all the things she was doing out and about which was basically partying. She and the daughter went out the night before Thanksgiving to have a drink. The daughter is 16 yet she took her to a bar and said the daughter's drink was a virgin. Now she and the daughter are out of town partying with some friends while hubby and son are home. And the neighbor and her friend just got matching tattoos. Guess she didn't need that part time job after all...
Don't get me wrong, I'm not jealous of her life. I am not a party person. I don't drink alcohol simply because my mom was an alcoholic and I have read that it can be hereditary. I don't have a problem with someone having a drink or two, but the getting drunk part, not so much.
Have I kept busy? I think so. I crocheted two pairs of slipper socks for Christmas gifts for a local charity, have my Christmas cards addressed, just finished crocheting 100 dish cloths for the local food pantry to put in their Christmas baskets, and am now crocheting Barbie clothes for a friend's granddaughter. DH was laughing at me last night when I said I sure knew how to spend a Saturday night...Barbie and I playing dress up.
I haven't blogged for awhile because life has been busy.
My doctor's office called and said that my insurance had told them they would no longer pay for a cholesterol medicine I have been on. The medicine is over $300 and they were paying about $100 and I was picking up the rest. So, I spent a lot of time going to pharmacies asking what the cash price. I have found around here trying to call pharmacies is crazy because they put you on hold and then may or may not get back to you after 20 minutes or more. Anyway, I found the pharmacy at Kroger had the cheapest price in our city. I then was researching to find coupons or whatever to lower my cash price. Good RX had a decent coupon, but the drug company offered an even bigger coupon of $75 off. It brought it just under $300 for a month's supply. The generic stuff the insurance company wants me to take had a bad side effect -- it raises my blood sugar to the point where I am pre diabetic. Although the doctor's office explained why I was put on this other medicine, the insurance company wants me to try three other ones that have similar side effects before they will even consider paying what they were paying. At this point, we think my health is worth more than gambling with this.
I know this isn't the end of the year according to most calendars here in the states, but we are ending our hat making year at church because we want to deliver hats to the kids before the weather gets super cold. So, I spent time going over poverty rates for the local public schools, then presenting this to the ladies in the knitting group and decided on the schools we would "adopt." In the mean time I was also fending emails from a church member who graciously lined up funding to buy gloves to go with the hats. Once we decided on the schools, I contacted principals. Two were easy and responded. One I had to contact over and over. I know they are busy, but it shouldn't take more than a minute to say yes or no and if yes, how many students? Then to line up dates when we can drop off the hats, scarves, and gloves.
I also purchased facial tissue and hand sanitizer for each classroom. Then came the actual counting and sorting of the hats. Last week we delivered hats to three schools and then to two individual classrooms to people who are affiliated with our church and who teach in the public schools. The remainder of the hats will go to a neighborhood organization that helps in a high poverty neighborhood. So, we are cleaned out of hats for this year and what a glorious ministry it has become. We made 1202 full size hats for the schools. We also made a good number of scarves. Plus, every kid who got a hat got a pair of gloves. Good thing, because things are getting cold this week. Here is a photo of some of the hats, gloves, and scarves:
The local paper came out and did a story on one of our schools that we dropped off to:
The neighbor is helping her mother-in-law declutter her craft room so she brought over some cotton to make dish cloths. I have made 36 dish cloths to donate to one of the local food pantries. I can honestly say I'm seeing dish cloths in my dreams. Here are some of the dish cloths:
Our church is having a Christmas tea for the ladies guild and they are collecting baby items for a local non profit that helps moms. We have been asked to donate baby items so we are now making small hats for this. I don't think my life is going to get any calmer in the next few days, but that is OK. I'm blessed to be able to do all this.