One Crafty Lady

I got a bunch of craft supplies from a very crafty lady. Among the collections, there were several unfinished projects. I decided to take on a few of them and finish them up.

The pattern and shawl


First up is a knitted shawl. I found a handwritten pattern with it. It wasn’t too clear. There were a lot of cross-outs and items that seemed to be missing. But I decided I could figure it out.

I took apart a bunch of rows where I could see mistakes. I tried to knit the pattern as I could interpret it and what I could see the stitches were.

After ripping out the mistake rows

“Ugh! Curse, curse, curse.” I moaned.

It wasn’t working. It didn’t look like the existing stitches. I rip out more stitches to try and decipher why the stitches look so different.

Ahhhhhh! Backloop!!!!! [0+++++++++++++++++++m,./ ] Orange the cat wanted to contribute to the post.

Our crafty lady knitted and purled most of the stitches in the backloop. I solved one major issue and on to the next issue.

Charting it out

I didn’t want to mark up the original pattern, so I decided to try to chart it out. I used the app stitchfiddle. There is a free and a premium version. I thought I’d try out the free version and see if I like it. I’ve never charted out a pattern before. There is definitely a learning curve. I had to figure out how to indicate the decreased stitches on every other row.

Section of the chart, gray squares indicate “no stitch” for my decreased stitches.

Once I got close to a finished chart, I decided to test it. Instead of continuing on the original unfinished shawl, I started with Berroco Vintage in purple. It’s a softer yarn (acrylic, wool, and nylon blend), much easier on my hands. The original was knitted in Red Heart acrylic, which is very rough on my hands and makes me not want to knit it anymore.

The beginning of the test shawl


I’m still testing my chart and making corrections as needed. Once I finished, I’ll post the pattern on Ravelry for free in tribute to our crafty lady. The test shawl will go to the crafty lady’s daughter, from whom I got the craft supplies. I’m not sure what I will do with the original shawl. I feel like I should finish and donate it. Maybe knitting it in fall will be easier than at the hottest time of the year.

From Cora’s Garden: Recent Blooms

I’ve been a bit lazy about posting lately. There have been a few beautiful blooms that I thought I would share.

I’ve in charge of the general maintenance of the yard these days. Parents don’t spend much time out there because it’s a fall hazard. I’m feeling pretty proud of things blooming. There have been few fatalities along the way. And don’t ask about the grass. I’m trying my best, and at least it’s green.

My Weekly Thrifty Finds

I thought I’d start a weekly posting of interesting finds from the thrift store. Lots of interesting things have been coming in lately.

The shop got a large donation of costume jewelry. There were over 200 pieces. Here are a few I thought it was interesting.

This sweater guard makes me want to wear a cardigan. Haha, I’m sitting in a tank top and shorts and sweating. And I’m writing about wearing a cardigan. I must really like this piece. I wonder how else it could be worn. I think the leaves could be turned into earrings, maybe.
A frog necklace. It weighed a ton. I don’t think I could wear it all day. The clock face was facing upside down. So if you pull it up to read the time, it would be right facing. Cute.

Did you know in Japanese folklore, frogs (Kaeru) bring you good fortune.


We also got a donation of incense and incense holders. The incense was from Japan, India, and Bhutan.

Incense from Japan in black lacqured box

The packaging on the inside was so bold and colorful. There was an inset with an illustration of a boat with Japanese written around it. I don’t know what was written.

This one was from Bhutan. The packaging was the complete opposite. Simple reed or grass wrapper with the ends sealed with paper. And black and white label with a line drawing incense urn. It looks like the label was hand stamped.

Just one more thing I wanted to share. Have you heard of these shrimp chips. My girlfriends and I got the crazies for these chips. Perfectly bite size, flavored with butter and garlic, so very addicting. It came back in stock at our local Costco. My friend who has been raving about it, also works at Costco, and sent out a text the other day asking if we wanted her to pick up a bag for us. Well, nine bags later, in the Starbucks parking lot, we picked up our bag. I ended up picking up five more bags on my weekly Costco run. One for our house, two for Auntie M, and two for Auntie J. If you can find it at your local Costco, give it a try. It’s worth it.

Let’s see how long this bag last.

Scrapy Shawl

Remember my Scheepjes d’Histoire Naturelle blanket I finished in August 2021? I had a bunch of extra yarn and wanted to use it up. I decided on something easy, nothing that I have to concentrate too much on.

It still needs the ends to be woven in. Sigh!

Here’s a simple gather stitch triangle shawl. Used most of the leftover yarn with a few small yarn balls for Orange the cat to play with. I cast on two stitches. I slipped the first stitch in every row and a knit front back increase (kfb) at the 2nd to the last stitch in every row. On the stripe sections, I knitted two rows of one color and two rows of the other color. I knitted to I ran out of yarn. At the widest edge, 64″ and from the bind-off edge to cast on 34″. Nice weight, not too heavy, perfect for a cool evening. The Scheepjes Stone Washed is both soft to work with and wear.

Fav Pic: Arches NP

Haha. This is one of the few pictures Oat took of me that can’t see my double chin or the super roundness of my face. Whenever he took a picture of me, I always said, “make me look skinny.” This one may not be skinny, but it’s much better than most others.

Going through these photos has me dreaming of a vacation, like one’s Oat and I took many years ago. Covid has stopped my adventuring for a while.

One of many arches to see.

My Arches trip was in 2009, part of a triple park tour: Yellowstone, Grand Teton, and Arches. There was lots of driving, beautiful mountains, and an abundance of wildlife. The parks were great, but the rock formations at Arches were spectacular. Making me want to go and visit again.

What I would do differently

Don’t go to Moab in July, too hot. There is so much to do outside but visiting in the middle of summer wasn’t the best idea. We went out by six, explored for lunch, and spent the afternoon resting in the ac of the hotel room. In the late afternoon, we would go out for more exploring and dinner. Not a bad use of time, but I would like to be out on the trail between 7-8 and come back to the room around 4ish to relax and shower before dinner.


Spend more time in the area. A two-week triple park tour was not enough time to explore Moab. Next time, I’ll want to spend at least a week in Arches the places we didn’t have to see on my last trip.

Be brave. I’m not really afraid of height but on this trip, heights seem to bother me. I was a bit apprehensive when scrambling over the large boulders. And the slopping area by the slopping made me very nervous, that I didn’t walk up to it. I did feel very disappointed. I hope on my next trip I will be able to summon up the courage to do it.

The Delicate Arch from afar

What I would do again

I most definitely would do the Fiery Furnace guided hike with park ranger again. We hike through narrow canyons and scrambled over boulders with the ranger leading the way and pointing out the interesting rock formations and the hows and whys they were formed. I also really like being lead so I could concentrate on the beautiful rock and not where I was going and how I was going to get back.