I can’t believe I forgot to show off this guy! It was a lot of work; probably the most difficult project I’ve tried so far. There are wires in all the ‘fingers’ and toes and arms and legs and it is brushed to make it fuzzy. It also uses 2 strands of yarn at a time which is not something I’ve done before and it didn’t feel natural to me.
The pattern is from Critter-iffic Crochet. While I am not a fan of having to watch a video to follow instructions, the linked video in the pattern was a life saver for understanding how the toes came together and the complicated assembly. So, due to the complexity and size, I actually didn’t finish this one in time for Christmas, which might be why I forgot to post it when I did finish it earlier this year.
The kiddo who received a bag full of not quite done parts was super paitent as I completed it, and loves it now. They have gotten very into bats over the past year so this guy was worth the wait to them.
I’m still trying to grow a little garden this year but had a lot of problems with my seedlings, so I have a lot fewer plants than last year. This might be for the best since we need to conserve water more every year, and I don’t have the energy right now I would need for a more ambitious undertaking.
Pictured are my very uneven tomato plants. Obviously one is much more enthusiastic than the other. Since I got a couple volunteer plants, and we had a mouse problem that ruined most of my seedlings, I didn’t actually know what type of tomato plants these were. Now that they are starting to bloom I can tell the bigger one is a cherry tomato and the other I think will probably end up being the more Roma-style tomato I grew last year.
My cucumber [plant is doing well and has some babies growing. I haven’t been successful with cucumbers before so this is exciting.
I tried adding other herbs to what I wanted to be my herb bed out in front of the house, and while the new plants are doing fine, the sage from last year is going nuts and I’m worried will take over, so I might have to trim it back so the rosemary has a chance.
Similarly, the patch I was just putting random flowers and veggie seeds in is being slowly taken over by catnip. The neighborhood cat likes to come sleep in it, and you can see the depression she leaves when she’s been there. That’s fun since we are trying to befriend her.
So this was a more challenging project than I had anticipated. I thought I would just find a nice wolf pattern and adapt it to the colors I wanted. Well. I couldn’t find a realistic wolf pattern I liked and the color changes turned out to be challenging for me, plus Wolf Link has a bunch of other stuff going on, like the chain around the leg and the green mane-link thing happening and a lot of details and symbols on the face.
I ended up using the German Shepard pattern from Amigurume Pets by Allison Hoffman and doing my best to add the markings, color changes, mane, and shackle. Also, as you can see in the photo, the fringe around the face I just ended up using felt to add on, partly because I was afraid of messing it up and partly because Christmas is a hard deadline and I was out of time to fiddle.
The teen loved it anyway and I noticed he has a place of honor in the critter collections, so I can call this a win.
My niece has a sweet and beautiful grey bunny. A real, alive one. While I believe she likes attention, I thought it could still be fun to have a version that likes being hugged and squished and put wherever she might like, so I made a plushy version.
To save my life I cannot now find the pattern I used. I found one that was what I thought I used, but it’s a paid pattern, and I definitely used a free online pattern because I remember that the website had something blocking printing so I had to sit at my computer when I needed the next step and I had to keep the tab open for a week or so because I didn’t have the time to make it all at once. Also, I didn’t realise until I finished that the pattern didn’t include a tail so I had to improvise one becaue a bunny totally NEEDS a tail. If I can track it down I will edit this to include the pattern.
The other change I made was to use crazy bug fluffy yarn. It’s a size 7 yarn called Chinelle Home that I got at Michael’s. I wanted the bunny to be about life-sized so I used a small bunny pattern but enlarged it with a big hook and big yarn. Plus it is super soft super plush yarn. So snuggly.
And again, I am participating without the goal of pushing to actually reach the 50,000 word mark. Even so, I’ve started off even slower than I’d hoped. I have so far averaged about 300 words a day these first couple days. So I will push a little because I’d like to see a few 1000 or more word days even if that’s not a pace I can maintain. My other personal goal is to get some writing done every day, and so far so good on that front and really, the only reason those 300 words got written the last couple days.
So any NaNoWriMo-ers out there, I’m karabu on the website if you want to be buddies. I won’t be hard to beat, so I’ll make you look good.
It’s all pinks and browns in July. Since I’m now working on this in October/November and I have nice cool evenings where snuggling under a heavy blanket is nice, I thought I’d start catching up. And while I’m keeping up (not falling further behind) I did forget one key thing that is going to interfere with my time to spend working on this project.
I have also started crocheting my yearly Christmas amigurumi for the kids. Now that the kids are big, and don’t go to bed before me, finding time to crochet in secret is harder. Plus I’ve picked a couple tricky subjects to work on that might be fairly time-consuming (no spoilers until after Christmas). Still, I can work on the blanket openly, so I will still have family movie nights and other good times to work, I just don’t think I will be making the fast headway I assumed I would.
Not to mention, NaNoWriMo has begun and while I’m not in it to win it this year, I am still in it.
Very excited to get to announce another story sale this year! My short story “Friendly Aliens” will appear in issue 18 of Mythic Magazine. Fear not, I will be shouting about it again when the issue is available too. Yippie!
That’s how far behind I am. But I’ve done more on the blanket this week than I probably have in the last month because our evening are nice and cool, so having a heavy blanket in my lap at night is nice now instead of torture. So I expect progress to pick back up again.
Don’t know if I will ever go as fast as I did in the beginning, because back then it was small enough for me to bring along wherever I went so I could work more often. Although for right now, my youngest is in an art class for about an hour and a half once a week, and even though I have enough time to go home, I’ve instead been staying in the car with my crochet and an audiobook, and it’s so relaxing I think I’ll keep that routine up at least through the end of their class. I can get several rows done at least on those nights.
In general, I am maybe wishing I’d reversed the use of pink and brown. It’s turning out not to have all that much brown in it and I envisioned more, and the pick is getting a bit much. Looking over the July and August numbers, I think June might be the last we see of green for awhile.
As June marks the halfway point, I decided to measure again. It looks like I’m right around 40 inches, which predicts a finished length of 80. That matches with my prediction back in March, so it’s good to see I’m staying consistent. That’s not counting any border I end up adding, but I think this will end up being a great size for our bed.
And since I’ve only been sharing a month at a time, here at the halfway point seems like a good time to let you see the changes over the whole so far:
For my birthday last July, I got a wildlife trail camera. I wanted to see what critters were eating my pumpkins at night, and maybe try to get some cute bird pictures by putting it into a bird feeder or something. Even though I’ve had it awhile, I’ve only recently started playing with it.
The first visitor I caught on camera was maybe a little disappointing, but probably shouldn’t be surprising considering I live in an urban area (our tiny patio backs up to a shopping center, not wilderness after all). It’s a rat. I had thought maybe it would be an opossum, since we spotted one once out there, but no. I don’t know if this is what was eating my pumpkins last year, or my tomato recently, but it’s a suspect for sure.
I don’t think we will have a serious rat problem, because the next night, I tried out the video setting and it caught a different nocturnal visitor: (Note, WordPress won’t let me upload the video without paying them more money, so this is just a still from the video.)
I think it’s probably safe to say this is the most likely suspect regarding the destruction of my catnip plant last year. But I’ll always forgive the cute floof. (And I was able to save the plant, so there’s that.)
I was disappointed in the lack of bird visitors, or at least those the camera was catching. Then yesterday I got this photo:
Not a great view, but at least verifies what we already knew – that birds do visit the yard. Maybe a pigeon? Hard to figure out size from this view. The beak looks not quite right for a pigeon. So I think my next experiment will be to put some seed out on the table and try to attract some birdy visitors.
For anyone interested, this a Wosports Trail Camera. Not too expensive and so far, easy to use. The settings are to take 1 photo when motion is detected, take a burst of 3 photos, or take a video and you can set the length of time.
Haven’t given a cat update in awhile because all is well and normal, and noting noteworthy has happened. Still. I believe the internet cannot have too many cute cat pictures, and I have been remiss in adding mine.
Plus I took this photo of Pumba a few days ago and it’s just adorable. You’re welcome.