Monday, May 8, 2017

Sorry for being MIA!

Hello Stay@Home Stitchings fans. Many apologies for my lack of activity on here the last few months. For those that didn't know, my husband was deployed to Iraq for 6 months, not including all the training and such he was gone for before that. I completed 4 American Flag blankets between August and December and this prayer shawl immediately following that. To say I was exhausted and burnt out a bit is an understatement! I slipped off the grid and haven't picked up my hook or ...needles in over 2 months.. The dry spell is over though, and I'm ready to get back to it!! It will probably still be hit or miss on here as we near the end of the school year and all that holds, not to mention the extensive summer traveling we have planned, but I do hope to be stitching in the midst of all that craziness if possible and posting whatever I manage to finish as it gets done. Lots of new patterns are's just a matter of getting them stitched up, typed up, tested and published. There are a lot of good ones I have in mind, though, so check back to see what's new from time to time. I think you are going to like what's coming your way.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Happy Veteran's Day!

Happy Veteran's Day to all our service members and their families who have served and are currently serving! We thank you for our freedom!

Here is a great article listing charitable organizations that support our military members and their families. I love knitting and crocheting for charity, and these look like a great list of organizations to support.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

If I'm sitting, I'm definitely working on about you?

Leave your comments here....Are you a public knitter/crocheter? Willing to work on your latest project anywhere? Where was the most interesting place you worked on a project?

Thursday, August 13, 2015

How to work the wrap and turn (W&T)

This post is to provide a photo tutorial on how to work the wrap and turn technique, specifically the wrap and turn instructions for my most recent pattern:
Mindy's Knit Monster Pants

Which can be purchased in any of my online stores:

Step 2: Slip the next at purl wise from left to right 

Step 3: Below is pictured what the completed slipped stitch looks like.  

Step 4: Bring the working yarn from back to front between the slipped stitch and the next stitch not worked yet. 

Step 5: Next slip the previously slipped stitch back from the right needle to the left needle. 

Step 6: Below is pictured what your work will look like after the 2nd completed slipped stitch. 

Step 7: Turn your work and bring the working yarn to the front in order to be able to properly work purl sts back across the specified number of times in the pattern. 

Step 8: Continue working your wraps and turns according to the pattern. When you are done you will need to begin working the wrapped sts together with the sts they are wrapped around. Below is a pic of what the wrapped sts look like from the front of your work. 

Step 9: Purl back across the row until you come to the 1st wrapped stitch, as pictured below. 

Step 10: To work your wrap and stitch together, lift the back loop of the wrap onto the left needle with the right needle. 

Step 11: Below is just a picture showing what the right needle placing the wrap onto the left needle looks like. 

Step 12: Below is a picture of what the left needle looks like when the wrap is placed in front of the stitch it was just wrapped around. 

Step 13: Purl the st and the wrap together. 

Step 14: Below is a picture of what the wrap looks like on the wrong side of the work after you've stitched the 2 stitches together. It is normal for it to look a little loose and not snug to your work. 

Step 15: Below is another picture of how the wrap will look a little loose on the wrong side. 

Step 16: Continue working each wrap as it appears. When you finish purling across you must W & T again to work back across the other half of your short rows and work the other wraps in. Sl your BOR marker and the next st purl wise from left to right. 

Step 17: Bring the working yarn from back to front as pictured below.

Step 18: Sl the st and the BOR marker back to the right needle and prepare to knit back across. 

Step 19: In order to try and reduce a possible hole in your work here, be sure to trap the MC with the yarn you are working with before knitting back across. 

Step 20: Knit across every stitch until you come to the first wrapped st which will look as pictured below. 

Step 21: Insert the right needle through the front part of the wrap. 

Step 22: Continue to then insert your right needle through the stitch it's wrapped around. 

Step 23: Knit these 2 sts together. 

Step 24: Knit the remaining wraps the same way until you reach the last wrapped st. Do not work this wrap yet, instead sl that same st from left to right and make a 2nd wrap. 

Step 25: Below is a picture of what the st looks like with both wraps around it. 

Step 26: Below is a pic of how to work that double wrap together when you reach the part of the pattern of the first row of MC after working the mouth. Insert your right needle through both wraps and the st they are wrapped around and knit all 3 together.

Step 27: Below is another pic showing all 3 sts on needle before stitching them together. 

Step 28: Finally, don't forget to knit that last wrap together with the st that it's wrapped around at the end of the round. 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

600 Facebook Fan Giveaway!!

 I apologize for the long delay between my last post and this one. We have been moving and it's taken most of our summer up to this point. We are finally unpacked and settling into our new house, but it has taken much longer than we had expected. Thanks to everyone who hasn't given up on us!! Through our short absence, we have actually reached 600 Facebook Fans!! Make sure to head over to our Stay@Home Stitchings Facebook page and enter our latest giveaway! The drawing will be held this Sunday evening (Aug.9). Good luck and thanks for your continued support!!

We have reached 600 fans!! Comment here for suggestions on what the next giveaway prize should be. Winners will be drawn...

Posted by Stay@Home Stitchings on Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Thursday, February 19, 2015

How post it notes saved my family...

I'm a perfectionist. I'm a full blood, to the bone, hard core perfectionist....and it is ruining my family.

Or at least it feels like that some days. Having this trait at times can be helpful, but when it comes to being a wife and mom, I feel it can be destructive. Since being a wife and a mom is pretty much the majority of who I am I find myself hating this part of me more often than not these days. I've struggled with pushing this part of myself aside and letting go of the little things only to find myself right back where I started in a vicious cycle of trying to get better only to fail time and time again. I've prayed about it and pleaded with God to take it from me but have come to realize I have to accept that this is who I am and find a new way to push forward and do life better in spite of my shortcomings.

So how do post it notes tie into all of this you ask? LOL I'm getting there. I was sitting late last night knitting up some monster pants (those of you who know me well know exactly what I'm talking about here, LOL) as the rest of my family was sleeping. I had just finished watching a few episodes of Chasing Life on ABC Family on Demand. I recently saw some commercials for this show and decided to watch it from the beginning. The main character, April Carver, has been diagnosed with Leukemia and the show is about her and her family's journey through her illness. As I shut the TV off my mind was still swirling around about how young the character is. About how life can throw a curve ball at any minute when you least expect it.  About how extremely blessed I am at this very moment in my life to have 4 healthy, amazing children and one incredibly awesome husband and how I shouldn't take one second of that for granted. My mind wandered to the "what ifs" any of you moms and dads out there can understand.  What if one of my kids got diagnosed with Leukemia tomorrow, what if the bus crashes on the way home, what if a mad man walks into one of their schools, what if I die before they are fully grown, what if, what if....the list goes on and on. What if today was the last day I had with any one of them.... what would be their memory of me if I was gone and what words would be in their minds about how I feel about them? What is the long term legacy I'm leaving for them? What am I doing every day to build them up and tell them how great I think they are? Do they know? Do they know that of all the people in the whole world, I truly feel like I have been blessed with the best 5 people on earth to be my family? Do I tell them that enough? What are they hearing from me every day? .

You see, as a perfectionist, criticism comes a whole lot easier than praise. In my mind and in my heart I'm screaming how wonderful I think they are, but out of my mouth is coming a whole different message. In the busy-ness of life I'm barking orders and getting frustrated at every turn when they aren't doing exactly what I think they should be doing at the exact moment I think they should be doing it. I'm a broken record of, "chew with your mouth closed", "turn off your lights", "clean your rooms", "make your beds", "don't run in the house", etc., etc. The list here goes on and on too.... some things I've spewed out of my mouth have been darn right mean and destructive and I'm not proud of how I have handled situations like lying, back talking, sassiness,  disrespect, and other harder issues that occur. As a parent, I am the farthest thing from perfect that I could possibly be. As a perfectionist you can see how this would be a problem, LOL. I live in daily frustration with myself for not being able to figure this whole parenting thing out. There's got to be a black and white way to do this, right? WRONG! So wrong....there isn't even a black and white way to do parenting in one family. Every child is different and unique and what works for one may not work for another....even though they share the same blood. We learned this lesson very early on with our first 2 kids and have been reminded of it often throughout our parenting journey. The even harder part is, sometimes what works this week for one of the kids won't even work next week for that same kid!

 As parents, we are constantly being pushed to change and adapt to whatever our kids are throwing at us and at times that can be downright exhausting, right? We get worn down and tired and end up trying to survive the moments as they come up instead of taking the time to make a lasting change. Well, in all my quiet time last night I realized something.... as a perfectionist I've been focusing on the wrong things. I've been so concerned about my kids being "perfect" - perfect manners, fully respectful, disciplined, obedient, sweet, loving, kind, etc... and how their lack of those things means I'm failing as a mother....that our daily routine was becoming a repetitious record of "don't do this" and "stop doing that".  Sure, they are kids and are going to do knuckle headed things and they are going to have their mouthy phases and they are going to ignore me and drive me crazy!!....but they are perfectly and wonderfully made and are exactly how God created them to be. Instead of focusing on all of the things they aren't doing right and making them feel defeated every day, I wanted so badly to figure out a way to be their biggest cheerleader because I feel like my true feelings about them were getting lost in the "barking". I think I have some amazing kids that don't realize I think they are amazing. I wanted to find a way to fill them with words of praise and be a source of encouragement in their lives every day, in spite of whatever choices they make that aren't "perfect".

Now don't get me wrong, as I reread what I've written so far I realize I'm making myself out to be this horrendously mean and terrible mother, LOL, which is how I feel about myself at times but realize that comes from my perfectionism and tearing myself down for every mistake I make (which are a LOT). I didn't just realize last night that my kids are perfect the way they are, it's just one of those moments where you stop and put everything into perspective and a new light is shed on a situation you have been struggling with.....which in my case is my worry that the balance of "the don't do that's" and the "you are awesome's" was being tipped in the wrong direction....which brings us to the post it notes. (FINALLY, LOL) ....

The saving grace of brightly colored squares and a God who hasn't given up on me yet and put an exciting plan in my head while I sat in the quiet of my house last night. It's a plan to build my family up with the ABC's of praise and encouragement on post it notes. I just started last night and so far the response has been pretty awesome. My plan is to sit each night after everyone goes to bed and come up with 3 unique words, in alphabetical order, for all 5 people in my family. Not only do my children need to hear my words of encouragement, but my husband does too. I need to be a source of light and life to my family to help them understand their worth and potential. This morning my family woke to find these words on post it notes at their spot at the kitchen table:
My husband: Admirable, Brave, Charming
Caleb: Achiever, Brilliant, Cool
Maylie: Ambitious, Beautiful, Creative
Brinley: Affectionate, Bubbly, Cute
Adilynn: Adorable, Bright, Caring

I could barely go to sleep I was so excited about this morning. Words and thoughts for the next few letters running through my mind and wanting to make a whole list before bed. My husband and I wake at 5 a.m. I get a quick workout in while he has his quiet time reading his bible and drinking his coffee and then we switch. I come into the kitchen for my quiet time to read my bible and drink my coffee while he gets his workout in. When I came into the kitchen, wouldn't  you have guessed...there was an orange sticky note on my placemat hubby started my ABC's with: Admirable, Bold, Christian. It wasn't my intention to get a list started in return, but it was a very pleasant surprise and made my morning brighter too.

My son was already excitedly asking if I was going to do D-E and F tomorrow and was worried he would miss some letters over the weekend while him and his dad are camping with the Boy Scouts. I assured him I would not do it over the weekend but would probably just make it a Monday through Friday thing so nobody misses out. (I also plan to keep a journal of the words I use so as I go through the alphabet over and over I can make sure I'm not repeating the same words for the same person over and over.) The mood in our house this morning was already lighter and the smiles on my kids faces as they read the words I wrote for them was priceless. Don't get me wrong, I will still push for good manners, respect, obedience, honesty, integrity, hard work and all the things I thought were important before. But now as the moments come up that I need to correct them for heading down the wrong path in the wrong direction, they will also have those words of praise and affirmation floating around in their heads. They will know that even though I need to correct them for the moment, my love is unconditional. No matter how many times I need to tell them to flush the toilet or eat over their plates, they will also know I think they are awesome, brilliant, courageous, delightful, exciting, fun, great, happy, imaginative, joyful, kind, loving, magnificent, nice, outstanding, perfect, quaint, remarkable, sweet, terrific, unique, valuable, wonderful, x-cellent, youthful and zestful anyway. :0)  I want the words I truly feel about them to be etched into their hearts every morning as they read them off of the brightly colored squares of sticky paper. :0)

Who wants to join my ABC's of praise and encouragement challenge? 3 words a day to cover the 26 letters of the alphabet. In just a little over a week your family will have 26 positive words describing how you feel about them. (And think of the new vocabulary they'll learn when you need to start getting creative, LOL). I would love to know if anyone else will try this and the change it brings in your house. I'm excited to see my family being lifted up and encouraged and have a feeling we will be going through the alphabet over and over and over....even if I have to repeat words. Brightly colored post it notes saved my about yours?

Friday, January 9, 2015

DANGER! Prone to continual Crocheting (and/or Knitting)

So here we are, 2015 already. Where has the time gone? I have decided I'm a terrible blogger. Being a mother of 4, running my own Etsy shop and currently deciding to take on getting my certification to teach knitting and crochet all while getting a job teaching said crafts at our local Michaels store has left me very little time to be on the computer these days. I have very little time left to think, much less put words to paper (or typing them out in this case), to keep my wonderful and loyal fans "in the loop." ;0) There has been so much that has happened since my last blog post there would be no way to catch up now, so we start fresh with the new year. It is definitely on my list of goals for the year to try to at least post 2 blog posts a month this year. I have so many new things to share!!
The problem with keeping up with a blog for me is exactly as the cartoon states, I have the dangerous tendency to sit and continuously crochet or knit. I pretty much spend every free moment (which isn't much with a family of 6 in case you were wondering), creating, designing and stitching. Lately I have been kept super busy with orders for Monster Pants. Have you seen these things?

They are super cute and I can see the draw to them. I only started stitching them because my sister found a picture of them and said she would love a pair for her youngest. I had no idea what I was going to get him for his 1st birthday as he is baby 4 of 4 and really didn't need a whole lot. I decided to stitch up this pair of knit monster pants for him and have been busy making them ever since. Throw in the holidays and several waves of company in between and that leaves me with ZERO time to blog. 
So, all this to say, if I ever go missing again for long periods of time from keeping you in the loop, it's just because I'm taking the few minutes of free time I have found and am furiously knitting or crocheting projects of some kind or another. I don't think that will happen again, though. I have some really great ideas for upcoming blog posts. Taking these certification courses has been fantastic and I am learning all sorts of new and fun tips and tricks to share with all of my followers. Who knew after so many years of doing a craft you could learn so many new things? I have really been amazed! (You can teach an old dog new tricks! LOL).I plan to have the first of these blog posts typed up and ready to share in the next week or 2, so make sure you stay tuned.
In the meantime, Happy Stitching!! Hopefully you and yours had a Happy Thanksgiving, a very Merry Christmas and the Happiest of New Years! :0)
If you are interested in purchasing the monster pants pictured above make sure you check out the listing in my Etsy shop:


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