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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Picture Perfect

Diaper cake


Before adding the "icing"

The "icing"

Halfway done

All done!

Need to get some greenery to add here and there. But this one is complete.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Circle of Life

Hey Bloggers!

You all know that I've been dealing with the loss of a family friend. Well, he was buried last week, amidst a lot of drama. Sad, but that's the way it goes sometime. Another very good friend of mine had a baby shower for her oldest daughter this past weekend. She's having a baby boy; her second child, and second boy. There's a ten year gap between her oldest son and the baby she is expecting. At any rate, to lighten the tone of my blog for this week, I decided to post the pattern and pictures of the present I made for her; a diaper cake, and a baby blanket. I call the baby blanket “Shades of Blue” Boy Blanket. I love the granny square pattern, but I've never written a pattern before, so please bear with me. Here goes:

“Shades of Blue” Boy Blanket

Granny Square – make 61
These are the colors I used, but you can use any shades of blue that you like.

RHSS Royal – 10
Baby Blue – 10
RHSS White – 9
Caron Simply Soft Ombre – 14
RHSS Blue – 8
RHSS Delft Blue - 10

Ch 4. Join with a sl st to form a ring.
Rnd 1: Ch3, 2dc in circle; ch2, 3 dc in circle; ch2, 3dc in circle; ch2, 3dc in circle, ch2. Sl st to top of beginning ch3. sl st into next 2 stitches. sl st into corner space.
Rnd 2. ch3, 2dc, ch2, 3dc in first corner space. Sk cluster, *3dc, ch2, 3dc in next corner space* Repeat from * to * 3 times. Sl st into top of beginning ch3 sp. sl st into next 2 stitches. Sl st into corner space.
Rnd 3. ch3, 2dc, ch2, 3dc in first corner space; sk next 3 dc; *3dc into space, sk next 3 dc, 3dc, ch2, 3dc in next corner, sk next 3 dc,* repeat from * to * 3 times. Sl st into top of beginning ch3 sp. Fasten off.

Half Granny Square – make 20

ch4, sl st to form circle.
Rnd1 Ch3, 2dc, ch2, 3dc in circle.
Rnd2 ch3 turn, 2dc in first ch space. Ch1, Sk 2dc, 3dc in space, ch2, 3dc in same space, ch1, 3dc into top of beginning ch3.
Rnd3 Ch3, turn, 2dc in first ch sp. Ch1, sk 2dc, 3dc into sp, ch1, sk 3dc, 3dc into sp, ch2, 3dc in same sp, ch1, sk 3dc, 3dc into sp, ch1, sk 3dc, 3dc into top of beginning ch3. Fasten off.

Join the squares in a diagonal pattern. When joined, the diagonal rows will contain 1,3,5,7,9,11,9,7,5,3,1 squares, with the half-grany squares placed in the triangular spaces, all the way around. Wish I knew how to diagram it so you could see it. Hope you can see what I mean by the pictures.

Boarder: Once all the squares and half-grannies are joined, sc around the blanket twice, with whichever color you prefer. I used RHSS Blue. Next round, dc all around. I used Baby Blue. Next round sc around then finish with picot stitch. Fasten off and weave in loose ends. You may have to do some shaping.

I know that's not the best pattern description. It's my first one. If you try to follow it and have problems, just email me, or hit me on Yahoo! Messenger.




I made everything that's in the diaper cake, too. Sweater, hat, 3 pairs of booties, bib, 4 wash cloths. With some trinkets from the dollar store, artificial greenery and ribbon, for my first diaper cake, I think it turned out great!

That's it for now Bloggers. Stay Blessed and happy.

VEM

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Still grieving...but thinking

This has been an emotional week for me. I wear my emotions on my sleeves anyway, and everything I feel shows on my face, so I’ve not been smiling a lot this week. The sudden loss of my friend has truly saddened me. He had so many things he still wanted to accomplish, so many dreams left unfulfilled.

His death has made me think. He was at home. His children were sleeping 20 feet away. His wife was at work. There was no other adult around, who knew him, who could speak rationally with the authorities; as naturally, his children were too upset.

None of us know the time we will go to meet our maker. Losing my friend has made me take a closer look at myself and my life, and I’ve come to realize that I’m not as prepared as I would like to be, to meet my maker. Because, let’s face it, once we’re gone, it's not about us anymore. It’s about the loved ones we leave behind.

Being a single mom, I need to have some things in place, to ensure my children know what to do, who to contact, where important papers are, etc. I’m not talking about a Will, although it’s probably good to have one. I’m talking about a single sheet of paper which lists my full name, social security number, and date of birth. My boys would be too frantic to think about looking in my purse for my driver’s license. On that sheet of paper, I’d include phone numbers, for people they could call, to help them through the crisis. Family members; my sister, my best friend, and I would like to add, my Pastor. But, that is another agenda item I need to secure, as I am still looking for a Church home.

I’d include things like: what funeral home I’d like them to use; what I’d like to be buried in, the type of flowers I’d like draped over my casket, the color of my casket, which cemetery I’d like to lay in, and of course, insurance policy information. Nothing complicated, just little things that would make planning my funeral easier on my boys. And, when I think they're ready, I'll tell each one of them where the paper is located.

I don’t think any of us want to plan a funeral. That would mean someone we love has gone on. I remember when my Mom was alive, she would try to tell me these things, but I didn’t want to listen. I didn’t want to think about losing my mother. I didn’t want to talk about her leaving me. But she did. And some of the things she said had managed to creep into my subconscious.

I don't want this to sound morbid, or like I plan on dying tomorrow. In fact, I'd like to live another fifty years. But, inevitably, that day is going to come. All I want to do, is make it easier for the ones I leave behind.

That's it for now, Bloggers. Stay Blessed and happy.

VEM

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Mourning the Loss of a Friend

I am filled with an overwhelming sense of sadness. I lost a friend today. He was more like the brother I never had. A great man, with a big heart, who was always smiling. Even in the midst of drama and chaos, he could see the humor and find a way to make people smile along with him.

This man was in great physical shape. He worked out regularly and ate sensibly. He had just turned 47 years old. My age. It's hard to believe. One minute he was here, the next, gone. Almost in a flash.

Life is so fleeting; so temporal; so precious. Yet, we take it for granted everyday. We conceitedly think that we can do things later, or tomorrow. What if tomorrow doesn't come? My friend left this earth in the span of two hours. His son woke him up between 4:30 and 5:00 am, getting something to drink. They exchanged a few words and returned to bed. His daughter went to wake him up at 6:55, and he was not breathing. How is that possible?

He leaves to mourn a wife, children, grandchildren, mother, step-father, brothers, sisters, cousins, aunts, uncles, neices and newphews. He also leaves to mourn a community. A host of single family homes, filled with fatherless children, who called him "Pop." Someone they looked up to. A role model to imulate. Please pray for us. Pray for his family. His extended family. And hold your loved ones close. Tell them you love them. And mean it.

Rest in peace Adrian McDowell.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Procrastination

It's always been one of my faults. I keep putting things off until time creeps away and then I'm forced to deal with...whatever. Within the past week, three things I've been putting off have crept up on me. One has been extremely painful.

The first thing I put off was my son's school project. He told me about it last week. It was due on Tuesday, 2/1. He got it turned in, after we stayed up until almost midnight working on it. I felt bad, literally, due to another thing I'd been putting off. He had to make a musical instrument for his Science class. Here's a photo of the "guitar" we made.


A cereal box, hot glue gun, tape, and some gimp. We named it the "Fruity Diamond Edition."

Another thing I'd procrastinated about was getting my car tags. I received the notice like waaay back in November. My tags expired on January 31st. In Maryland, we don't have to go to MVA to renew our tags, we can do it online or through the mail. I waited until last week to do mine. The process was extremely easy. Log in, enter your tag number and ID number, select payment method and checkout. Once you checkout you can print out a temporary registration to place in your rear window. Sounds pretty easy, doesn't it? To save time, lets just say it didn't quite work out that way for me. Took me about three days and 50 sheets of paper. Not doing that again.

The most painful and agonizing thing I've been procrastinating about is going to the dentist. I think a lot of people have a fear of the dentist. I have an unrealistic fear. I don't know where it comes from. I don't know if it's the sounds of the equipment, the unknown because I can't see what they're doing, I just don't know. So, I try to take really good care of my teeth. Apparently I ain't been doing that good a job. I had a slight toothache when I went to bed Sunday night. I woke up on Monday and my bottom, right jaw was swollen, and my tooth ached so bad it gave me a headache. I took some pain pills and went to work. About 11:30 I was calling the dentist. Long story short, I have an abcess. Really bad one. I have to take an antibiotic for 10 days and go back after the swelling goes down to start periodontic treatments. $500.

I don't know why I'm such a procrastinator, but I do believe in the adage: "why do it today, when I can put it off until tomorrow." LOL Lord willing, I'll get better.

Oh, that reminds me. I said in last weeks' blog that I would post pictures of my weave. Well, here they are:



Not too shabby. I think it turned out great. Only thing, my head sweats real bad and with the weave, my scalp itched something terrible. I took it out over the weekend. After I took it out, I flat ironed my own hair and I really like it this way. It just takes too long in the morning. Too high maintenance for me. So, what I'll do with it next is anybody's guess.

One thing I learned from all this procrastinating is that it can be quite expensive. But, when it's all said and done, to quote a mastercard commercial:

Doing your own hair weave, $25.00. Renewing your car tags online, $180. Going to the dentist with an abcess, $500. Spending time with your child, working on a school project, Priceless.


Take care til next week, Bloggers. Stay Blessed and happy.

VEM