Happy Independence Day, everyone! Here in the U.S. of A., I can hear people setting off fireworks. But most of all I hear music in my head, first of all, Lee Greenwood’s beautiful “God Bless the U.S.A”:
And then, as always when I think of patriotic songs, I think of growing up on an Air Force bases and hearing the National Anthem played every day all over the base at a certain time. Even as a kid, I remember stopping what I was doing and standing stock-still with hand over my chest for the duration of the song. Only when the song was finished did everyone on the base continue what they were doing. And, sometimes, I miss that here in civilian life, hence the video below (note the car that does not start driving out of the parking lot until the song is finished):
So happy Independence Day and thank God for our men and women in the Armed Forces who fight to keep this country free.
But this is a knitting/crocheting blog (with occasional book-talk and tea-talk thrown in). So let’s get on with the crafting. And it is on with the CAL/KALs.
Yes, the Tortoise vs the Hare has begun. And, yes, the mug above is real and made for the cohosts of the CAL/KAL as well as two possible winners of the the CAL/KAL (one from the Crocheting Whovian podcast and one from PHN) at the end of of the CAL/KAL at the end of September. Actually, I am drinking tea from my mug right now.
Actually, I sadly just finished my cup of tea. I need to make another cup.
Anyway, the Tortoise vs. the Hare is going strong. I have a Bitty the Bashful Baby Turtle and an Oops the Bunny started. I think I’m trying to go for the Bunny record. I think I’ve made seven to date. I am strongly Team Hare. I need to make T-shirts. But when I release PHN’s Episode 214, I talk more about that idea. I’d love to hear what you think. I’ll try to add in the link when the episode finally finishes uploading. My computer has been kind of slow lately with the massive amount of video content on it between me being the techie for the PHN podcast (God help us) and all my tutorial videos for my patterns.
Oh, speaking of tutorials, the tutorial Sparkle the Unipony is done! Meet Martin!
He’s the blue unicorn with the orange horn. And I’m keeping him. Which means that I will eventually being selling Sparkle (the original unipony). I just don’t have the space to keep multiples of my toys, particularly the large ones like Sparkle.
So, anyway, Sparkle is now officially in testing (and thanks all of you who agreed to test for me and/or showed interest in doing so!). All that is left is for me to finish getting my tutorials loaded and embedded in the pattern. Which takes much longer than I really like to think about. Like I said, this computer is really slow.
I know that y’all have been waiting for Sparkle for a long time. I’ve only been talking about this pattern for about 2 months. So what took so long? Well, first of all, Sparkle is a large toy. Definitely a good cuddle-size, but that also means that there is a lot of crocheting involved. And I have a bad case of project ADD anyway. Or would that be AD — Attention Deficit vs. Attention Deficit Disorder? Anyway, not congruent to my point.
So most of that two months were taken with typing up the pattern, then doing all the actual crocheting. Once all the crocheting was complete, I (thankfully) had a night off of work with nothing else planned. From about 20:30 to almost 04:30, I worked solidly on piecing together Martin and recording tutorial videos while doing so. All the videos have been recorded, but now is the long process of getting them all loaded, the sound tweaked (my GoPro records sound really softly, so I have to amp up the sound in editing), and embedding the videos in the pattern. So, yeah, an inside look at the process of putting together one of my patterns. More than you probably really wanted to know.
Anyway, what other news is there to share? The Ami-Along is still going strong, so if you are making Tortoises and Hares, make sure that you also double dip in the Ami-Along for a chance for prizes. I don’t think I can make my own toys for a chance for prizes and so I’ll be crafting along in the spirit of thing. I really do hate working with plastic eyes and really enjoy working my particular (unusual) brand of eyes, so I pretty exclusively make my own toys. But there are plenty of really cute toys in the Ami-Along. Kate E. Hancock, Vivian Clotilde, Justyna Kacprzak, Megan Barclay, and Alyssa Voznak are just a few of the many awesome designers involved in the Ami-Along. So you should really check it (and them) out. And I have a particularly special place in my heart for PatchworkMoose (Kate E. Hancock) and Stacey Trock (Freshstitches) since I feel like their influence started me off on this designing journey to begin with. Oh, and Stacey is also involved in the Ami-Along. Like I said, many, many awesome toy designers are playing in this thing. It’s a whole lot of fun.
Well, I’m craving another cup of tea (my fourth for the day), so I’m going to sign off. I hope you had a great holiday (those of you in the USA) and that you might have a great week!
Happy knitting and God Bless,