Monday, December 31, 2018

New Year's Eve

It's hard to believe that it's New Year's Eve already! Dave and I have a wild night planned. I'm guessing we'll both be in our pajamas by 7 and asleep in our chairs somewhere between 8:30 and 9. Yes, we do live life on the wild side! ;-)

I'm not quite ready to give up crocheting, but I'm going at a much slower pace. I started this one on Christmas Eve. The pattern is 12 Step Sampler Blanket and can be found on Ravelry. I'm using a variety of multi-colored yarns that I have on hand; all of it is I Love This Yarn from Hobby Lobby. The design shows up much better in solid colors, but I still like the way this is working up. I've finished one 35 row pattern repeat. I anticipate this one taking me a couple of months to complete.

I'm not ready to give up Ice Drops. I did a little doodling last night and came up with this design. I'm not sure if this is one I've written up before or not. The problem with writing up patterns is that I have a difficult time remembering if it's something I've done before!

I tatted this one today. I changed the picots a little, but that's the only change. This is one of my new shuttles from Shuttle by Design. I can't help myself. I love any sort of paisley design, and I love blue!

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Travel tatting

It's been a busy holiday season for us! It's hard to believe that we've packed so much into the past week.

Monday was Christmas Eve, the kickoff to our family celebrations. Daughter Alison drove down, and we headed over to my sister-in-law's where Carol and Jon joined us. We had our annual Christmas Eve feast of ravioli, repeated and laughed over familiar family stories, and then headed home.

On Christmas Day we sat around watching Hallmark Christmas movies and eating treats of biscotti and chocolate, while waiting for the roast beef and mashed potatoes. We do like to eat!

The day after Christmas, Wednesday, we headed to Minnesota. Daughter Joanne prepared a delicious ham, and daughter Andrea and family joined us.

Thursday, ten-year-old Ella had a softball tournament. It was my first time attending a softball game, so I asked a lot of questions, trying to understand the rules. We watched three games, and then headed back to Andrea's house for pizza, more stories, and more laughter!

On Friday, Andrea took me shopping for some new slippers, with the rest of the family tagging along.

Andrea and I both have problems with our feet, so when she recommended these clogs as house shoes, I knew I had to have a pair!

Food seems to be the overriding them in our holiday gatherings. Andrea recommended Lucky's in Rosedale, MN for lunch. It was delicious! Mom has been asking for a good picture of Dave and me for a long time. This is one of the best ones that's been taken of us in a long time. We tend to get caught with one of us having closed eyes!

Yes, I did take tatting supplies along. I didn't want to be tied down to following a pattern, so I filled my little tatting bag with glass gems, a ball of Lizbeth Snow White, and tatting shuttles. I was ready to go with variations of the basic Ice Drop pattern. The first six are based on my basic Ice Drop pattern. The last three are variations of the one pass Ice Drop. I still prefer the look of my basic pattern, but I do use the one pass method just to change things up.

I will keep tatting Ice Drops in the new year, but I'm ready to start another tatting adventure. I'm not sure what it will be yet. I think it's time to browse through my tatting books and get some ideas!

Monday, December 24, 2018

Go figure

This morning Blogger looks like it always did before my system update. It hasn't worked properly for weeks, and now it suddenly seems to be back to normal. There must be little sprites working overtime inside my computer doing their best to get me to give up working with computers! ;-)

Yesterday was busy with last minute gift wrapping and a little tatting! Again, I stuck with the basic Ice Drop pattern, changing the number of picots for each one. These are in size 20 Lizbeth #173, Purple Marble.

Our holiday festivities begin today and will continue through New Year's Day. I'm not sure if I'll find time to blog, so I'll take this opportunity to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Back to tatting!

It feels good to get back to tatting! All three of these are the basic Ice Drop pattern. The only thing I've changed with each is the number of picots. Isn't it great that they can look so different with just minor changes? These are tatted with size 20 Lizbeth #602, Snow White... my favorite Disney character!

Friday, December 21, 2018

At last!

I finished the last of the afghans!

There are four large ones for the older grandchildren, and three small for the younger ones. I love the variety of colors! Each afghan was crocheted with Lion Brand Mandala.

Please remind me to not undertake such a large project again. Seven afghans in six months almost did me in, and my tatting time really took a hit. I think I'll look for more balance in the new year!

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Simple fix

I finally found the info I needed to get Blogger back to normal. The fix was so simple. All I had to do was clear my browser history! It seems to have worked, but if I have any further problems, I'll be sure to share.

Update: I thought it worked, but it didn't. I have too much to finish before Christmas, so researching will have to wait until the new year... dang!

I only have 10 inches to go on the afghan! I'll plug away at it today. I so want to tat more than one Ice Drop a day!

Monday, December 17, 2018

Checking in

I'm still crocheting like crazy! I only need to finish this ball and one more ball of yarn, and I will be done. The only sad part about all of this crocheting is that I've barely made a dent in my yarn stash. How did I accumulate so much yarn?

My sister finished the collage for her granddaughter. She used three of the four flowers and all four butterflies. The white flower is hanging from her Christmas tree! :-)

The afghan is getting to large to carry back and forth to school, so I have been getting a bit more tatting done.

My Ice Drop stash is dangerously low, so I'm focusing on variations of the basic pattern so that I can build up my supply quickly. Inspired by Rita Richmond's Christmas sweepstakes, I've been using some of my favorite shuttles from her. I do love my tatting shuttles!

Thursday, December 13, 2018


Have you seen Rita Richmond's newly posted sweepstakes? Rita is giving away three of her gorgeous shuttles! To enter the sweepstakes, email or send via Messenger a picture of your tatting with one of Rita's shuttles. There will be a poll for voting, and three absolutely gorgeous shuttles will be given away. How's that for excitement?

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Finished for now

All of the promised necklaces have been finished and delivered!

This one went to Nikki.

This one went to Paige.

This one is unclaimed.

This one is also unclaimed.

This one went to Hope.

The unclaimed ones were possibilities. The girls weren't sure if they preferred the Swarovski rivolis or the compass charms. Now I have a couple of back-up necklaces!

Over the past couple of days, I've also tatted four butterflies and flower motifs for my sister. I forgot to take a picture before packing them up for mailing. Janet's going to use them for a collage she's creating for her granddaughter. Abby recently had her first dance recital, and Janet has put together a framed piece including pictures from the recital, tickets, and the program. There were a couple of bare spaces which will now have tatted motifs from Great-aunt Diane! I'll post a picture when Janet sends it to me.

Yesterday, our high school secretary requested two messy bun/ponytail hats. Knowing I have a long way to go on Aidan's afghan, I decided to knock them out right away. Believe it or not, I finished them both today! However, I forgot to take a picture. Oh, well.

I'm still having a problem posting comments on blogs, including my own. I found that I can reply to comments if I use Chrome. However, I'm used to using Safari, so I am frustrated that I can't use Blogger the way I like.

Are any of you Apple users? Have you upgraded to Mojave and experienced problems? I'd sure like to know if anyone has found any solutions. In the meantime, I'll keep researching!

Tuesday, December 11, 2018


Saturday's Christmas in the Village was the most successful craft show I've ever had! I sold 3 Ice Drops, 8 scarves, and 8 Santa Keys. The best part of the day was that I saw people I hadn't seen in years. It was exhausting, but fun.

I did pay for all that fun. I spent Sunday in bed with a crashing headache. I'm convinced it's because of the weather. Dave thinks it's because I overdid it on Saturday.

I'm almost finished with the necklaces for the high school girls, although I'm sure I'll be asked to make more.

It's going faster now that I'm tatting the ones without beads. Also, I'm using the same pattern. I did have some inquiries about the necklaces at the craft show, so that's something to keep in mind for next year.

When we were up at daughter Alison's a week ago, I spied a doo-dad snowflake that I had tatted a few years back. I must have given all of mine away, because there aren't any on my tree. While getting ready for the craft show, I found my stash of doo-dads. Now I have the urge to tat some snowflakes!

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Taking a break

That is, I'm taking a break from crocheting! I've been seeing so many beautiful Ice Drops, snowflakes, bookmarks, and edgings, I just had to break out my tatting shuttles and tat!

There's a group of five girls who eat lunch together every day, and they've been admiring my tatting. So, they're each going to get a necklace. I have requests for to blue with beads, one blue without beads, one purple without beads, and one red without beads.

For some reason, my computer won't let me rotate this picture, although it looks fine in my Photos file.

I chose to do the beaded pendants first since they're slightly more time consuming. I'm hoping to finish these up for the girls over the weekend. I'm using the same pattern for each of them since the girls are good friends. The differences will be in the thread and crystal colors.

For the rest of the evening, it's back to crocheting. Christmas will be here before we know it!

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

A gentle reminder

My blog is set as my home page on my computer as a gentle reminder to keep track of my activities. I haven't been very good at that lately! Somehow, blogging about progress on an afghan isn't nearly as exciting as blogging about experiments with tatting.

I'm happy to say that I'm making good progress on my last Christmas afghan. I do like the color combinations in Mandala Spirit. I do have another afghan started, but that one's not a Christmas present so I don't feel pressure to finish it any time soon.

Since I always carry tatting with me, I have managed to complete another Ice Drop. This one is in Coats & Clark size 70 with a 12 mm  compass charm. I think it turned out pretty good!

Dave and I decided not to go all out for Christmas this year... ha! Although my box of favorite ornaments hasn't made it upstairs yet, I had plenty of Ice Drops, nutcrackers, and acrylic snowflakes to make the tree look festive. I'm sure a big part of it is that Dave loves putting loads of lights on the tree. I like it, too!

I'm off to read blogs now. Please don't be offended if I haven't left a comment lately. I've had a lot of problems leaving comments. Either I can't leave them at all, or I get caught in a Captcha loop of having to click on pictures multiple times. If I can't get through after the third try, I give up. I keep thinking I'll send comments via email, but I forget. Technology is great... when it works!

Thursday, November 29, 2018

I'm still busy working on my last Christmas afghan, but I've also been carrying tatting with me and working on it when I can. The blue Ice Drop is a Swarovski rivoli and 12 wt Sulky cotton #712-1293. I love the shade of blue! The red Ice Drop is a compass charm and DMC size 80. The thread covers up the compass points, but highlights the compass lines. I think it looks pretty cool!

Several of us retired teachers got together at our friend Peggy's this afternoon. We all taught together for many years. I'm not sure of the retirement order, but I think Judy (3rd grade) was first, followed by Peggy (5th grade),  Marilynn (2nd grade), Pam (4th grade), Robyn (1st grade), me (elementary library and computer), and then Edna (kindergarten). Gosh! That covers all the grades! There were others we taught with who were unable to attend. We would have loved to have them with us; still, we had a great time together!

Sunday, November 25, 2018


My goal has been met! I just finished Alexa's necklace, and I will be able to give them to the girls tomorrow.

Now, it's back to the afghan!


Karina's necklace is finished! This one is in 12 wt Sulky Blendables and a 12 mm Swarovski rivoli. I really am enjoying tatting these beautiful necklaces!


Kylie's necklace was a bit of an adventure. Kylie asked for no extra beads, which meant this would be one of the simples necklaces for the girls. Ha!

I was almost finished with it, when I made a mistake on a ring. Although I was trying to be very careful, I shredded the thread and had to cut it off and start over.

Yesterday morning I was on the phone with Mom and daughter Joanne, one right after the other. I hadn't wound enough thread on the shuttle, so I needed to add some more. Not a problem, right? I added the thread to the shuttle, and then got up to get a cup of coffee. After a few sips, I realized the pendant was missing. I searched on and off all morning long. I never did find the piece I was working on, so in the afternoon I started a third time.

Luckily, the last try went smoothly! I wonder if I'll ever find that original piece?

Saturday, November 24, 2018


I know I've been a slacker when it comes to blogging, but it's simply because I've been too busy!

I reached my goal of finishing Eva's afghan by Thanksgiving! I finished it up Wednesday night... one more afghan to go!

There was no school on Wednesday, so I had plenty of time to go grocery shopping and finish getting the house ready for family. Daughter Andrea and family arrived late Wednesday night. Carol and Jon were here late Thursday morning. Alison and family came early afternoon, and Karen and Larry arrived soon after.

Of course, we had way too much food! Granddaughter Ella took before and after pictures of the feast, but I forgot to have her share them with me before the family headed home. After cleaning up, we pulled out our favorite family game, Mexican Train. Grandson Aidan took over for me, so that I could go to bed at 9. Yes, I was the party pooper... I have a really difficult time staying up past 9! The kids stayed up until 11 to finish the game, and I learned in the morning that Aidan and I had won!

The feasting continued on Friday. Everyone who could (Aidan is allergic to eggs), enjoyed scrambled eggs, fried potatoes, bacon, and fruit salad. For lunch... leftovers!

Andrea and family left for their next destination in the early afternoon. Alison and family were able to stay until early evening.

Dave and I had some more leftovers for dinner, and then we started decorating for Christmas. The holiday season has officially begun!

Monday, November 19, 2018


I finished Sydne's necklace this morning! I tried to use my necklace from Mandy Kerwell-Bez as a pattern, but mine turned out a bit different. I guess that's a good thing, right?

Today was a wonderful mail day! These two beauties are from Grizzly Mountain Arts.

Rita Richmond of Shuttle by Design created beautiful shuttles to commemorate two years of the Ice Drop Addicts page on Facebook. These two are Rita's style of shuttles.

I chose to have the back decorated with my name and the date.

Rita also offered decorated Moonlit and SewMate shuttles.

Of course, I had to have one of each. I love that Rita incorporated the Ice Drop idea into the design!

Saturday, November 17, 2018


I finally finished the first of the necklaces promised to some of my high school girls. This one is for Ashley. I chose to work on hers first, because I knew the black would be the most difficult thread to see. It doesn't show up well in the picture, but the blue rivoli and seed beads that Ashley chose show up beautifully against the black.

The center is a 12 mm Swarovski rivoli. The seed beads are from my stash. The thread is 12 wt Sulky, which is wonderful for tatting. I found a deal on silver snake chains a while back. I wish I could remember where, because these are perfect for the girls' necklaces!

Thursday, November 15, 2018


My beautiful new paisley pendant from arrived today! I am thrilled with it! Guess what I'm wearing to school tomorrow? I am so please with the quality of this pendant, that I plan on sending a piece of my own tatting to be made into a pendant after the holidays. Ruth Mary also has a gorgeous Cascade Necklace. Do I dare have three?

Daughter Joanne has been doing some Christmas prep and shared this picture of her Ice Drop display.  They don't all fit on the trees, so Joanne is going to make some wall displays. I'll share pictures once she gets them done. In the meantime, I think this display looks very festive!

One of the new Ice Drop Addicts members asked what would be a good next step pattern for Ice Drops. I decided to follow my friend Cindy's lead and work with red and white. This is the basic pattern with a slight change in the stitch count to accommodate a slightly larger glass gem.

Next, I added extra picots.

After that, I used the one pass method. I think the basic pattern is great for quick gifts. I can finish one in about an hour, and I usually have an hour to spare each day... unless I get distracted!

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Slightly different

I'm trying to keep the bottle cap Ice Drops simples so that I can complete more of them, but they still take quite a bit of time. Christmas in the Village is just a few weeks away, and my Ice Drop supply is kind of low. I think it's time to revert to basic Ice Drops so that I have a good supply on hand!

Monday, November 12, 2018

Peacock snowflake

Instead of trying to tweak the snowflake design I worked on last week, I decided to just work with the basic bottle cap design and alternate what I did with the chains. This is basically the first round of Shelley Perreault's Peacock Coins pattern. I've changed the stitch count to work with the flattened bottle caps. The rings are 5-4-5, and the chains are 5-5. For this one I alternated placing a bead in place of a picot and having three graduated picots instead of one. I'm not sure if I like it or not, but I think I will try it again.

My waffle stitch afghan is coming along nicely. It's now 20" long, and I've just started on my third ball of Lion Brand Mandala, Genie. Will I reach my goal of finishing this by Thanksgiving? Only time will tell!