Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Happy Veterans Day!

Thank you for your service and sacrifice for our country! We live in freedom because of you! A special wish for a happy Veterans Day to my two favorite veterans, my father (USAF retired) and my DH (USN)! My thoughts and prayers go to the families in Fort Hood -- your loved ones are heroes!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

So Many Projects, Not Enough Time

I can't believe how quickly 2009 has slipped by! And now we're about seven weeks from Christmas! The list of gifts I want to make keeps growing. For sure, I have to finish DS3's bookbag -- he asked about it today. Oh, did I feel horrible when I had to tell him it still wasn't complete. Worse than that, I haven't touched it for weeks. :(

So completing the bookbag is Number One on my list.

Number Two is completing DS4's Christmas stocking. Several years ago (before DS4 was born), I crocheted Christmas stockings for DS1, DS2, DS3, DH, and myself. I like to decorate in non-traditional holiday colors, so I made the stockings in shades of blue and purple.

When DS4 was born, I knew there would come a day when I would have to make a stocking for him. No problem -- I found the worn free pattern that I had used originally, picked some more Lion Brand Homespun yarn, and starting crocheting last winter. Unfortunately, Christmas came and went before I could finish the stocking (don't worry, he got goodies from Santa in another, not handmade, stocking). He didn't even notice that his stocking was different. But this year, he's a year smarter and much, much more observant, so I must finish it! Number Two.

Number Three is a blanket my mom asked me to make for my sister. (No peeking, M!) I'm about 3/4 of the way complete. I love the color combination (a pretty pink and chocolate brown) -- she's going to be lucky to get it from me -- it's definitely a keeper!

So those three are my "must finish" items! Time permitting I want to make a scarf for my mom, hats for DS3 and DS4, and something from the exchange student my parents are hosting. I also have an awesome pattern for a man's vest, that hopefully will be under the tree for DH.

Monday, November 2, 2009

A Handmade Halloween and First Monday Sale!

Here's DS3 and DS4 dressed up for Halloween:

(Note: I apologize for DS4's unfortunate hand gesture. The gloves were too big for his little hands. Also, he wouldn't let me draw a mustache or sideburns. Maybe next year...)

DS2 was Indiana Jones with my old leather jacket and a fedora, and DS1 was the Plague. Yes, the Plague. He had his rat minions crawling all over his shirt. Not real ones of course, because that's just gross and would freak me out.

I hope everyone had a safe and fun Halloween!
And a quick reminder that today is ETC's First Monday Sale! 99 shops are participating this month! Save 20% at The Lavender Ladybug, and Buy One Get One 50% Off *OR* Buy Two Get One Free at The Lavender Lizard! Have a great day!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Just a short post in-between candy runs. Life's been super busy, but I have to share one funny little item I just had to get for Halloween -- the Devil Domo:

He's so cute and if you recall, DS3 dressed as Domo for last Halloween. That costume was such a hit with all of his friends and the other trick-or-treaters (the adults, however, were baffled.) I briefly considered recycling the Domo costume -- which we still have -- and adding the horns and forked tail. (Maybe next year....)

Here's a sneak peek of DS3 and DS4's costumes:

More photos of the boys in their costumes coming soon, and don't forget Monday is the ETC First Monday Sale.
Let's be safe out there....

Sunday, October 4, 2009

First Monday!

Oh, how I love First Mondays! It's a great day to shop the terrific sales of my ETC teammates -- 113 shops this month including both of mine! Wow! Time to get a jump on Christmas shopping! Visit us here to see the complete list of shops and specials!

At The Lavender Lizard, I'm having a BOGO sale -- Buy One, Get One 50% Off **OR** Buy Two, Get One FREE!

At The Lavender Ladybug, everything is 20% Off! I have lots of autumn motifs for crafting plus I'm destashing some commercial supplies. These pumpkins have been a best seller this year:

I got the sweetest note from my last buyer about these pumpkins -- she said they were the cutest ones on Etsy! Yay!

One little shop announcement, I won't be listing single lip balm holders at The Lavender Lizard any longer. Now, they are still available as three-packs, and as always, I take custom requests for other quantities. And shoot, I'll still sell you just one if you like. But for now, I won't relist the single ones, only because there are so many color choices, and I want to concentrate on other items in my shop. Please contact me though, if you want to order 1 or 2 or 15. Thanks!

Happy First Monday!!!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Where Does the Time Go?

I just realized today that it has been a month since my last blog post. Where did the time go? Well, I stay busy with 3 boys at 2 schools plus the baby at home. (Okay, so the baby is 3 now and talks up a storm, but he is forever and always "the baby".) I serve on a PTA board and a Council of PTAs board and now a Bond Committee board. Then there's my part-time, mostly weekends job and oh yeah, I just got re-hired at a previous job. So to an extent, the things that have suffered the most from my "busy-ness" have been my Etsy shops and obviously, this blog.

I have found time to crochet, though, in the midst of this madness. I am working on a large wholesale order for The Lavender Lizard. Here's a sneak peek:

I'll have more information on these later, so stay tuned!

Plus I've just finished a custom request for silver metallic stars in 3 sizes at The Lavender Ladybug. They will be sewn onto a sweater for a Halloween costume. I can't wait to see how that turns out!

And I did finish both the market bag for my friend's daughter (no pics, though) and the one for my sister:

Sadly, DS3's bookbag is on the backburner. More than likely, it will be a Christmas gift now. After all, Christmas is less than 3 months away, so I do have some time to finish it.
(Proof that time really flies: Happy 12th Birthday, DS2!)

Monday, August 31, 2009

More WIPs

Okay, so school for my oldest 3 boys started last week, and the bookbag is not yet ready for DS3. One problem -- I ran out of the nylon thread. Here's what it looks like now:

Plus, I have been trying to finish a market bag for my sister. It's just missing the handles/drawstring, then weaving in the loose ends, and mailing it off. If I just sat for a day or so, I could finish it. I sure do love the self-striping yarn though.... (this is the view of the bottom of the bag.)

I'm also working on a market bag for a friend's 13yo daughter. She requested yellow, green, and purple, and I found this nylon thread that combines those colors with hot pink. Very girly.

Why am I working on all three of these projects at once? Crocheting Attention Deficit Disorder, I think. I usually have an upstairs project, a downstairs project, and a travelling project. This keeps me from getting bored. Hey, I just realized I'm a CADD.

Monday, August 17, 2009

A New Design and Other Musings

I've been thinking about indian corn (you know, the chocolatey candy corn) motifs for a while now, and I whipped up a set this weekend. They are posted now at The Lavender Ladybug, along with the original candy corn motifs. What do you think?

I also made this tiny fried egg. I'm not sure why -- I just thought it was a cute idea.

I finished a market bag for my mom's birthday, and I'm working on one for my sister. I'm also working on a book bag for DS3, who starts 3rd grade in 7 days. Hopefully, it will be finished on time **crossing fingers and making wishes**

Here's Mom's bag:

Other market bags are available at The Lavender Lizard. They feature a round solid bottom, mesh sides that stretch, and knitted handles that also serve to close the top. You can sling both handles over one shoulder or wear it like a backpack. And as always, custom orders are happily taken!

Speaking of DS3, he was decorating a pencil tin the other day for school. Here's the conversation that ensued:

Me: Do you want me to help you find the letters for your name?
DS3: I need a "p".
Me: There's no "p" in your name.
DS3: I'm spelling "private".

Here's the finished pencil tin:

What can I say? That boy has personality!
I just love the little smiley face!

Friday, August 7, 2009


Ruth of rhradcliffedesigns.blogspot.com tagged me with this little meme.

Here are the rules:
1. Collect the book you have most handy.
2. Turn to page 161.
3. Find the 5th complete sentence.
4. Cite the sentence on your blog.
5. Pass it on to other blog friends.

Here's Ruth's: The SQ is responsible for all parts of the province not under the jurisdiction of municipal forces, of which there are many in the Montreal suburbs. (Grave Secrets by Kathy Reichs)

Here's mine: Pretty soon, other bikers will find excuses to walk past so they can take in the sight of her leaning against the table just right. (Book of the Dead by Patricia Cornwell)

I have chosen:

Tricia: handmadewhimzy.blogspot.com
Connie: hello-refabulous.blogspot.com
Amy: miasophiasday.blogspot.com

Monday, July 27, 2009

ETC Design Challenge -- Summer Magic!

Etsy Texas Crafters is having their monthly Design Challenge right now! The theme is Summer Magic! So what magic does Summer hold for you?

I entered three items in the Design Challenge. My Neapolitan Stripe Scarf:

Market Bag in Marshmallow (a brand-new design!):

Partly Sunny Motif Scarf (another brand-new design!):

All of my entries are available for sale at The Lavender Lizard! And there are tons of other great entries! Please stop by the challenge page and vote for your favorite! (The link to the poll is at the bottom of the challenge page.)

Oh, and the top vote-getters will win prizes, one of which I'm donating -- their choice of my 3pack lip balm holders! So please help us decide the winners by voting and look for the August Design Challenge -- Elements! Thanks!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Another Primo Afghan Complete!

I'm just so excited to be finished with this:

It literally took four hours over the course of two evenings (and two Ranger baseball games) to weave in all of the ends of this afghan. It is my least favorite chore of finishing a project.

What's up next? Here's a sneak peek:

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Baby Boy Blanket

I confess: I'm a bit of a yarn snob. Not in the "I only use $15 a skein yarn" way, but more like the yarn I use must feel soft. I admit that I avoid anything labelled "acrylic." Usually.

Then I found Cotton Ease by Lion Brand Yarn. It's made of 50% cotton and 50% acrylic, and it feels thick and luxurious, almost velvety. It has the softness of cotton with the durability of acrylic, and I thought it would be perfect for the custom order baby boy blanket a friend of mine requested.

My friend's sister-in-law is expecting her first baby soon, and my friend asked me to make a blanket for a baby shower gift. She left the colors and design up to me. So I hit the Lion Brand Yarn website for inspiration and found a super-cute pattern that I just fell in love with. (Note: you may have to sign into the LYB website to see the pattern.) The only problem was the girly colors they used, but I soon fixed that!
I chose these 6 colors:
From left to right and top to bottom: seaspray, almond, lime, maize, lake, and violet.
I started working the pattern, which is a simple ripple design with double-crochets. After using just the first three colors (seaspray, almond, and lime), I decided these were sweet for a baby boy.
But I was curious about how the rest of the colors would look together, so I made a swatch that included the dark purple and denim blue (violet and lake). I love the way these five colors look together. They are perfect for an older boy. DS3 liked it too, so I promised him his own blanket.
Then I added the gold (maize) to the mix. I'm not sure the gold adds much to the boyish blues. I think I will save it for another project, probably mixing it with purple and reds and browns for an autumn look.
And here's the finished baby blanket:

I just repeated the stripe pattern using seaspray, almond, and lime, and ended with seaspray. Another choice could be to alternate the almond color between the seaspray and lime. (That would "lighten" up the design.) I also made it longer and wider than the pattern called for because I like to think the child will use this for many years to come.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Kinsler Deserves to go to All-Star Game!

Hard to believe, I know, but Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler was left off the American League All-Star Roster.

Please help me vote him in! Thanks!!!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Happy 4th of July!

To celebrate the 4th of July weekend, I have extended my $5 sale at The Lavender Lizard! There are some really great buys -- some items have been marked down 50%!!

Also another selection of items have free shipping (either USPS First Class or First Class International). Those items (some are new listings!) can be found my searching for "julyfreeship" in my shop.

Oh, and check out this super-lovely blog -- oh hello, friend! The Lavender Lizard is featured along with 5 other terrific shops, all of whom are having holiday weekend sales. You'll notice that one of the other shops featured is none other than my good friend Connie/ReFabulous! Her shop is full of recycled/reclaimed goodies. Let's see....I have her pincushions, her rose and lavender sachets, and my latest find -- a gorgeous tote!! (No surprise here, I keep it full of yarn! I've been planning on photographing it, so be sure to check back.) I'm sure you will love Connie's shop as much as I do!

Both the $5 sale and free shipping offer will expire on Sunday, July 5, just in time to get ready for ETC's First Monday Sale!

Have a terrific holiday weekend!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

New ETC Monday Event!

In honor of the fifth Monday of June, Etsy Texas Crafters is having a $5 Monday Sale! Now that's a bargain!

At The Lavender Lizard, I have marked down many items, some as much as 50% off! To find out which items are marked down to $5, please check out my ETC $5 Monday Sale section. Also there are plenty of items that are always $5 or less, including lip balm holders, anything cups and eco-friendly scrubbies.

At The Lavender Ladybug, there is nothing priced higher than $5, so feel free to shop, shop, shop!

As an added bonus, if you purchase 3 or more items (whether on sale or not), I'll ship those to you FREE! (USPS First Class or First Class International only.) The listings can be from either of my shops to qualify.

To see the other $5 items, click on the photo of Armadillo Tex!
(Above and on the right side.)

Friday, June 26, 2009

Americana Gift Swap!

Etsy Texas Crafters, the best street team on Etsy, recently held a gift swap with an americana theme. I love gift swaps, so I signed up and was paired with Alyssa of simplysparkles. I looked at her profile and noticed she liked the color red and purses and bags. So I made a tote with a solid red bottom, a red-white-blue body, and red straps. It's perfect for the beach or library or even for the grocery store (no need for plastic bags here!)

I used one of the free patterns from Lily Sugar n Cream yarn, but changed the dimensions slightly, made the solid part of the bottom larger, and used a variegated yarn for the body with a solid bottom and straps. (The pattern called for either variegated or solid yarn, but not both together.) I hope she enjoys using it as much as I enjoyed making it! (I'm thinking of making more bags for The Lavender Lizard; please share your thoughts by leaving a comment! Thx!)

Alyssa, in turn, sent me these adorable earrings! One reason I really like them is that they are long and dangly, and super comfortable! Thanks, Alyssa!

Plus, they look great with my latest Tuesday Morning find, a nautical-inspired, americana-striped Sak bag:

Can you guess what I'll be wearing for the 4th of July??

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

More WIPs and an Update...

It's been a busy, crafty couple of weeks since the boys finished up their school year. They all painted birdhouses for my parents' 51st anniversary, which was on June 15. My parents live about 30 minutes away on 6 1/2 acres of land with tons of trees. We thought the birdhouses would be a great addition to their enjoyment of the property.

From left to right, DS4's barn birdhouse, DS3's double-decker birdhouse, DS2's colorful feeder, and DS1's castle birdhouse. (Truthfully, I painted the barn. DS4 was not interested in painting at all.)

I finished one of the 2 scarves I started last week. It turned out great! I will be listing it soon at The Lavender Lizard.

I was not happy with the way the second one was turning out, so 5 rows into it, I pulled it all apart. The reason: I love love love the yarn (Caron Spa -- a bamboo/microdenier acrylic blend) and the colors are scrumptious:
But the pattern I was making was not taking full advantage of the drapey, silky feel of the yarn. I have new ideas for the yarn though, and I hope to dive into them real soon.

And here's what I'm really, really, really trying to avoid:

The only things missing from this afghan are weaving in the ends (yuk!) and 3 rows of a border. I must force myself to finish this, and I'll probably devote Friday to this dreaded chore. Wish me luck!

Friday, June 12, 2009

WIPs and UFOs

My home is full of WIPs and UFOs. Before you get the wrong idea, WIPs are works in progress and UFOs are unfinished objects. Sounds like they are the same thing, but really UFOs are WIPs that have been tossed in a drawer and left untouched for a period of time. I admit I just looooove to start new projects, sometimes before the current ones are complete.

So to that end, I decided to finally finish some loooooong standing projects. I can't tell you how many years ago I started this cross-stitch sampler, but the magazine with the pattern on the cover is from 1988.

It sat unfinished for many, many, many years. I finally finished it recently, but I made a design change (gone are the teddies!). Now I just have to frame it! Yay!

I also finished Afghan 1 for los primos (the cousins). My mother asked me to make 7 afghans for her 1st cousins (children of her father's brother). Out of the 21(!) children born to my great-grandparents, only my grandfather and my great-uncle Nat lived to adulthood. Both of them died in 2001, and they are greatly missed by their children and grandchildren.

So Afghan 1 is finally ready:

Afghan 2 is almost complete (it looks finished here, but trust me, the side with all of the yarn ends looks horrible! If you know anything about me, you know I hate to work in the ends.):

I did manage to complete this great dinosaur skull shirt for DS3's birthday! It only took a couple of days to crochet, and a couple more days to sew it on the shirt. The pattern is by Regina Rioux Gonzalez and was published in the March/April 2009 issue of Crochet Today!

I have 2 more WIPs that I started yesterday (please don't ask why; I just don't know). Both are scarves -- one is made of cotton yarn, and the other is an acrylic/bamboo blend that I just couldn't resist. They will both be listed at The Lavender Lizard when they are completed (which, hopefully, is soon!).

Monday, May 25, 2009

My Favorite Place in Texas

I like to say that although I wasn't born in Texas, I got here as fast as I could. Truthfully, the only reason I was born elsewhere was because my father was in the Air Force. He and my mother were born and raised here, so Texas has always been home (although I claim Colorado as well -- shoot, it's just too pretty not to!).

So I've been to all parts of Texas, and they are as different as night and day. Texas is the only state I know of that has fertile river valleys, coastline, desert mountains, rolling hills, huge towering forests, high plains, big cities, quaint towns, and everything in between. I love the coast, especially Mustang Island and North Padre Island. I also love the forests of East Texas. But my number one favorite place in Texas is anywhere you find wildflowers.

How can you not love the bluebonnets that greet us each Spring!