Saturday, May 16, 2015

Listening Caddy

I know a girl who uses a listening device to help her hear. The primary speaker wears a microphone and she has a device that she can adjust the volume on with ear buds delivering the sound directly to her ears. I noticed that she was losing a lot of time getting the ear buds out, untangling them and putting them in her ears. Also, her device doesn't have a clip or a way to keep it on her person if she's not wearing pockets.
I was inspired to create this so that she could have a pouch for the device, a way to prevent cord tangling, and keep her ear buds easily accessible. When she's not listening the elastic bands hold the cords in place and keep them from getting tangled. When she's ready to put the ear buds in, she can do so quickly. Additionally the whole unit can be put on and taken off quickly. 

I made two sizes of pouch. One for her smaller device and one for her larger back up.

The pouches can be changed between the strap easily with snaps. I stitched the elastic bands in place with embroidery floss to keep them from sliding down the strap.

It has occured to me that this would also be a great accessory for an iPod for kids (or adults) during travel. Or MAYBE even an iPhone 6 plus that's too big to fit in a pocket!
If you decide to make anything similar, please share tips and tricks!

Monday, March 23, 2015

PGM Spring Break 2015- Preperations

Luke is working with Professional Golf Management students now. That's the program you go through to become a Golf Pro. We had the idea to take some interested students with us on a trip down the West coast to check out some of the golf and see some sights they might not normally get a chance to see!
This was the flyer with the "rough" plan, though it changed a bit by the time the actual trip came. I was in charge of food on the trip. We opted to plan for at least one meal out a day, with snacks and peanut butter jelly sandwiches to supplement. We, and the college students were doing our best to make this big trip on a budget. To save money, we planned to do some car camping as well to save money on hotels. Upon marrying Luke (and getting to know his and his brothers eating habits), I quickly realized that guys can sit down and eat an entire container of anything in minutes. To help the guys coming on the trip pace themselves with snacks, I pre-portioned the food items.
Our special food needs included: dairy free, raisin free, and dairy & raisin free.

Snack bags included animal crackers from Costco (dairy free), goldfish, pretzels (dairy free), Nutrigrain bars, two kinds of nature valley bars, oatmeal packets, pepperoni sticks, snickerdoodles (home made, with a dairy free batch), and chocolate chip cookies. 
I took pictures of the serving size and calories just in case any of the guys objected to the quantity of snacks in their food bags. For the record, none of them objected and they seemed pretty happy with the snacks. 

I cut the pepperoni sticks in half so that they'd last longer and fit in snack bags. I put the bags in another bag to help prevent food flavor melding.

Just about all of us prefer no almonds. Rather than spend more money on trail mix that was pre-made AND had almonds, I opted to make my own. We purchased raisins from Costco, and M&M's, sunflower seeds, peanuts, and cashews from WinCo's bulk bins. 
As I portioned all the snacks, I divided them into bags labeled by food needs. I went with individual bags so that each person could pick what they wanted at the time. Also, then they were in charge of rationing their own food and it wasn't on me! 
Having ribbon in every color left from our wedding came in mega handy. Luke stapled a piece of ribbon in every color to the bag and then the guys didn't have to look for names or writing they could just find the bag with their color. We didn't do this early enough but I intended to give each person matching colors of skinny ribbon to tie to all their bags and gear. Next time I guess. 
I also packed a first aid kit.  
It contained gauze, a large pill container with a variety of medicine (Zertec, Benedryl, Ibuprofen, Tylenol PM, Tylenol) labeled with dosage, tums, one of those snap cold packs, band-aids, Neosporin, medical tape, the stretchy medical wrap, gloves, hand sanitizer, tweezers, maxi pads (2). I planned that the pads could double as bleeding stoppers and their traditional function, and that the self sticking medical wrap could be for keeping pressure on wounds, holding an ice pack in place, and a temporary ace bandage. 

We kept camping gear and the first aid kit in one box. The goldfish box contained "fire things.'  Starters, smores supplies, a lighter, hangers for smores sticks.
For each car I put together a bundle of ziplock bags for smelly trash (apple core, banana peel, etc.), 9 grocery store bags (one for each day to unload trash), mints (for carsickness or staying awake until the next rest-stop) and a pack of tissues with an emergency hand wipe taped on in case the nose blow gets messy. 
It rolls up nicely for convenient storage in the glove box. 
Our sandwich supplies went in a tub that traveled in our trunk for quick and easy access. This way I could make sandwiches as they were finishing up their rounds of golf.  
We got three jugs of water and asked that each person on the trip bring a water bottle that they could refill.  
We opted to only get enough water, fruit and bread for the first half of the trip and decided that I could make a grocery run if  needed. This turned out to be a good thing as guys on a spring break trip aren't all that into things that are "good for them."  
 We brought paper towel plates, sandwich bags for when I pre-made sandwiches, one trash bag for each day, and I stuck the plastic silverware in Costco size peanut butter jars that I cleaned and saved for opportune moments like this.
All packed up and ready to go! I put the bread in a tub because it was structured. The fruit and such went into my Deluxe Utility Tote from Christa's Thirty-One shop. I liked this because as things emptied out I could consolidate and the tote could flatten out. 
The people were divided between two cars. We towed the cute little U-Haul trailer with our Subaru. Not gonna lie the car rode pretty low, and may have scraped the ground more than was good, but it was just right for hauling all the golf bags and camping gear.
All posts related to this trip will be labeled: PGM Spring Break 2014

Monday, March 2, 2015

Sheep To Sweater-Complete

This project began back in June of 2013 when my Great Uncle Doc procured the most fantastic of sheep fleece for me from Texas.
This, mixed with my friend Mary enabling me to spin meant I was going to embark on the projects of all projects. I was going to begin the journey from Sheep to Sweater.
I began spinning the fleece in June 2014. I spun for two weeks SOLID and got enough yarn to begin the "Anne's Sweater." A book that was a gift from Mary S. as she knows my love for Anne with an E.
I started, and re-started the "Anne's Sweater" pattern in August. 
 I knit on it with my dear friends in Garden City, and as we moved to Moscow.
This feels big. 
 Its my knitting thesis.
 It marks my ability to complete the whole process of knitting.
Did I mention it has pockets? As I was committing to the iPhone 6 Plus (a super sized smart phone) I made sure that it would fit in this sweater first. Priorities eh? Rachel taught me about tacking some grosgrain ribbon into the band to keep it from stretching too much and getting too long and frumpy.  
It also marks my ability to blend patterns as I stuck this fabulous cable from a hot water bottle cover into the back of the sweater.

This sweater is warm. and fabulous and its story is a great one of love, family and friends.
It makes me so happy!

Fabulous Photos Courtesy of the ever so obliging husband Luke!
For previous posts on the sheep to sweater project see:

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Just a stick?

I was walking across the playground when I spied a fabulous straight stick! Not too bendy, not too knobby. Maybe because we just had one of our Harry Potter marathons, maybe because Becca  just got herself an Elder Wand from Harry Potter World. I couldn't let this stick pass. So, yes, I picked it up and brought it back into school. It did not get shoved into a bag. Oh, no. This special stick could break. And yes, I hauled it out to my car before the end of school so students would not inquire as to why I had myself a wand stick and they are not allowed to wield sticks as weapons.
One could say I'm immature and that I need to grow up. Me? I'm just glad for one moment, one afternoon, I was able to relive and recall the joy of finding "the perfect (at that moment) stick."

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Sad Day for Yarn

So I've picked Luke's Germany World Cup socks back up. The only knit item Luke has asked for. I began them two at a time toe up. I realized quickly that I would need an afterthought heel to keep the stripes in tact. I encountered a bit of a snag however when one of my skeins of yarn was separating every yard and a half or so. I was thoroughly dismayed. I put them down and did needless to say did not finish the socks in time for the World Cup. Well through meeting more knitters and doing extensive research I felt ready again. Only this time I'm playing go between on the two socks in a game of "Do I Have Enough Yarn." It's a wretched game. 
On one I've finished the foot, put in waste yarn for the heel, and completed three stripes of the cuff. 
I thought today that I'd hand wind the other ball to survey the damage, see if any of it could be salvaged. It cannot. 
I finally had to just bite the bullet and toss the whole lot into the trash. It was super wash so wouldn't have made felt spheres, and quite frankly made me sad to have it around. So now, I begin the quest to complete two Luke sized socks from one skein. And perform my first afterthought heel. Cross your fingers. 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Dyed and Gone to Roving

Dying wool roving. 
So I still haven begun the sleeves on my sheep to sweater project sweater BUT since I got the spinning wheel in functioning order this week thanks to the awesome ladies at Yarn Underground's Knit Night I've now plied the yarn for sleeves and have the spinning bug. This time I yearn for color!!! My favorite way to get color into fiber is Kool-Aid. I stock up at Wal-Mart where it behooves them to carry all the colors. The least fancy the store demographic the more colors you're likely to find. The most key things for dying roving:
-not felting (no agitation, no drastic changes in temperature)
I arranged my roving (this is the fantastic roving I got from Uncle Doc!) in a 9x13 pan. Then fills it with enough water to cover the wool. I added 1 cup ish of white vinegar. Then I shook out Kool-Aid packets as seen above. I did not mix/stir/ anything the Kool-Aid. Just sprinkled on top. 
Then popped it in the oven. I turned it on to 400 degrees. When I came back it I was gently boiling I added some more water (tap hot) as some had in fact evaporated out and turned down the oven to 300*. When I could gently push the yarn down with a potato masher and see that the water above the yarn was clear I knew we were done. If I was a patient person I would have waited for the water to cool and pull the roving out onto a towel and then rolled the towel to press the roving dry. Alas, I am not patient. I pulled the roving out with tongs, may have burnt myself and may have made a giant water mess. But isn't it cool? And let me tell you how fantastic it smells! And how great our apartment smelled when dying it!!
Mmmmm can't wait to spin this! And dye more!!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

A Tale of Two Quilts

Well, we made it over the river (several times) and through the woods to my in-laws home in Boise. I am now currently in bed taking a break from binding this house warming gift for them. 
As I was binding this runner, I began thinking about the quilt I was snuggled under. The blocks are from a friendship quilt exchange my mother participated in along with my aunt and many of my "other mother" family friends. This quilt top was assembled and donated to MCC to raise funds for world relief. The North Fresno MCC Quilters hand quilted this and then it went up for sale at the Central California MCC auction. It was there my mother purchased it. After some shifting around, it now resides at my in- laws home in their new guest bedroom. What a treat for me to enjoy this reminder here of so much love and how lucky I am that all my worlds are so blended. 

My sister was telling me that she read The Quiltmakers Gift with a young girl that she mentors. Quilts are gifts that go beyond thread and material, making them all the more special to have out, use them, and remember their stories. Sure, there nice to preserve for posterities sake, but when they're tucked away, how can new memories woven into their tales. So, get those quilts out, take a picture, and use them, love them, love the people you connect with them, and make memories. 

And me? I will go back to binding....and enjoying a tale of two quilts that have crossed paths. 

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Ice-Expanding My Schema

So you've seen the adventures of Daisy in snow. Today we explore what a Freezing Rain Advisory means. 
I checked the weather this morning and saw "Freezing Rain Advisory." Based on information I already had, freezing rain meant the water was snow. I thought that's silly. Why didn't they just put snow. When I arrived at my car I began to start to comprehend. Rain that hits lingers and turns to ice. I'm not really sure about the logistics on this one BUT I do know it meant I couldn't open my car door.
When I pulled on the handle the ice cracked but the door wouldn't budge. I hip checked it to loosen ice but still no budge. The ice scraper-not useful. Hot water-really not useful-and also increased the barrier of ice on the ridge at the base of the door. Finally Luke in his pajamas, coat and boots was able to force it open. 
This ice was so not like frost. 
Once I finally got into the car and got it going, the fans meant a bit of water under the ice and started to melt. I began to hit it with the butt if my ice scraper to cause it to crack and shatter off. 
Seriously peeps. Like a quarter of and inch thick! 
So this is how Idaho weeds out the weak.