A Call to my Crochet Hookers: Part 2

Hello, hookers! I posted a while ago about my Collaborative Leadership Project. I just want to give a quick update on the progress I’m making with it!

I have started sitting in with the crochet group at my library and they seem to be excited about the project.  A few members have learned to work in the round and have expressed interest in making some squares as soon as they get it down pat, which is great! I’ve also received a small number of squares from some of my co-workers at the library and even some friends who crochet, so a huge THANK YOU to everyone who has helped and who plans to help out!

I’ve stated that my deadline to submit squares was December 1st, but I am going to push it back to December 15th, maybe even a few days more.  I want to make sure I get as many squares as I can for this donation of granny scarves! I haven’t started assembling them just yet, but as soon as I do, I’ll get some more photos up. But for now, here is the first batch of donations! Yay! These were only the first four I received, so I have a small stack on top of these. So THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to everyone helping out with this! Keep them coming

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Afghan: A Finished Product

At the end of July I posted about an afghan I was commissioned to make.  Well I made it! I actually finished it a little over a month ago, but haven’t had the time to get around to posting about it.  So let me explain a little bit more about this afghan…

I have a friend in Pittsburgh whose co-worker was looking for someone who could make an afghan.  He sent me a pattern and liked my sample, so a week and a half later I got a big box of yarn in the mail.  I used this pattern from Caron (he sent me a free pattern you would get from a craft store) and though it was a little difficult to figure out in the beginning, I got the hang of it and started cranking out the squares.  I worked on it during most of my free time, and even took it with me on a road trip to the East coast. It took me all summer to make, but it turned out just beautiful! The colors are gorgeous together and, though the yarn was a little cheapy, it ended up being nice an slinky and soft.  So now this afghan has a cozy home somewhere in Pittsburgh and I was able to make someone’s Winter a little more snug.  After I finished it I of course had a photoshoot with it, so here are a few pictures of the finished product..!

 

Yay for completing big projects! This is probably the most time-consuming and most rewarding thing I’ve made, and I couldn’t be happier with it.  If you’re a fellow crochet hooker, what was your biggest yarn endeavor?

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A Call to all My Crochet Hookers

You may or may not know, but I am in Grad School for Library Science. One of the classes I’m in this semester is a leadership course where, surprise, we learn how to be successful leaders.  Throughout the semester, each of us has to come up with and present a Collaborative Leadership Project.  I’m not entirely sure if we’re required to actually follow through with the project, but I feel like my “do good” meter is running low so I actually want to follow through on my plan.  I knew from the start I wanted to incorporate my hobby of crocheting and use the resources available to me (my blog, colleagues at the library, and the crocheting community) to do some good.

So here is my call to action:

I’m hoping to collect as many granny squares as possible from anyone who has the time or wants to do some stash busting.  Every granny square I collect will be joined into scarves, and if this turns out to be bigger than I expected, they will also be turned into small baby blankets.  Once I conjoin the squares, the scarves and blankets will be donated to a local women’s shelter on the South Side of Chicago.  I’m hoping to get a nice big batch by December 1st, 2012 so that during the month of December when I’m not busy with school work I can work on joining the squares and donate the scarves and blankets by the beginning of January. Chicago should be in for a cold winter (though considering what we had last year, ya never know!) so I want to make sure these women who deserve some love and care get that love and care.  I’m referring to this project (for now…until I come up with a more catchy name..) “The Warmth of a Granny Scarf”

So as I said, I’m calling out to my fellow crochet hookers! I’ll list the requirements below and the mailing info. Please help me out with this. Granny squares are so simple and even if you only have time to make a few, it will still be a big help!

  • Use medium weight, 100% acrylic, machine washable yarn. If you can’t use this yarn, that’s okay too. Like-squares will be joined together.
  • Feel free to use any color(s) you want! The more color the better. Make them solid, or use multiple colors in one square.
  • Only do four rounds, as the fifth will be the joining round.
  • Use a 5mm/H gauge hook.

If you don’t know how to make granny squares, don’t fret! I’ve found some really helpful patterns and step-by-step instructions from some awesome blogs. So go check those out for some ideas.

Once you have a nice stack, send them to me:

Jenna Harte
2730 W 97th Pl
Evergreen Park, IL 60805
 

Thank you so much in advance to everyone who participates. If you’d like to enclose a little card or something I’ll include that in my package when I drop off the scarves. Otherwise I’ll include your name (unless you’d like to remain anonymous) in a note.  Please pass this along to anyone it wouldn’t otherwise reach and let’s see how many squares can warm the hearts and souls of these women.

Grow Up, Already!

I’ve noticed a theme in my last few sporadic posts, and it makes me sound like a broken record. “Okay, Jenna, we get it, you’ve had a lot on your plate lately!” Honestly, I haven’t posted in a while because I know it’s going to contain a sentence or six about me being stressed and overwhelmed, and I haaaate writing about that. So this is the last one, I swear.
I want to extend a question to whoever is reading this: How do you find the time and energy to accomplish everything? It was beyond easy when all I was doing was going to school and doing the occasional photo shoot. I had time to browse Craftgawker in the morning, fulfill crochet orders at lightning speed, and still have time left over to worry about what trouble I’d be getting myself into on the weekend. I’d be able to do everything I needed with minimal stress.
Now I’ve taken on a part time job at the library, a huge workload for school, a giant crochet order (which I’m almost finished with! Applaud me, please), all while trying to balance time with my amazing friends, boyfriend and family. I’m finding the little things that kept me amused before are taking a back seat for now. I used to take for granted the days when I had no obligations to force me away from the house; now I’m craving a half day when I can lounge around with some hot tea in my mug adorning my coffee mug cozy and a book. Today is one of those days which I’m very excited about! Until I have to go to class this evening. I know I only have a little bit of school left and once that’s over have more time to focus on a career and myself. But for now it’s my time to be angsty and complain about the stresses of growing up.
Anyway, I extend the question one more time: How do you find/make time for all of your obligations? It can’t be any big secret!

Quarter of a Century

So I hit a milestone last Wednesday, Sept 12.. That’s right, I’m a quarter of a century old. The big 2-5. I know, it’s not old, but I feel like the last 25 years have flown by so I can just imagine how the next 25 will hit me. Despite my realization that I’m actually an adult and have been for, what? ..6 years or so?.. I had an awesome birthday! It was so awesome in fact, that I dragged it out almost a whole week. That’s right, go big or go home. Even if it had nothing to do with my birthday, I made it about my birthday. White Sox game on 9/11? Birthday Sox game! Pedicure the day before my birthday? Birthday pedicure! Camping the weekend after my birthday? Birthday camping! Birthdays are kind of a big deal with my family so this is a normal thing with us.

Luckily I have so many awesome friends and family that everything we did was made special. My super cool man, his brother, my sister and I all went out in downtown Chicago for some yummy beers on my birthday and I could not have asked for a better way to spend my week night birthday. They all had work the next day but trooped it out for me =) Then over the weekend I spent some quality time with the boyfriend and my parents camping in Michigan which was beyond a pleasant weekend.  Spending hours on the beach with Matt and little miss Midge the puppy was the highlight of the weekend, as well as relaxing around the bonfire with some brews and listening to my dad chat about music. I wish I had taken more photos to document this leap into the second quarter of my life, but I’ve admittedly been pretty lax with my camera.

But take my word for it, Best. Birthday. Ever. Thank you everyone, my friends and family, for making my life so superb and enjoyable =)

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Passing the Summer Hours

I think I mentioned a while ago — hmm it’s been so long since I’ve blogged that I’ve forgotten what I wrote! — that I’ve been working on some big projects this summer. I hate sitting jn the heat with a mound of yarn on my lap, but what better way to pass all of this free summer time? One project in particular, an afghan I was commissioned to make, is very slow going, but coming along great! Here’s a photo of the progress..

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And good news! I finished a baby afghan but shh it’s a gift. Pictures to come after the baby shower.
How have you been passing your lazy summer hours? Do you even have any lazy summer hours?!

Summertime Blog Gaps

My fellow Americans: I’m not sure if you’ve noticed or not, but it’s been HOT. This summer heat has struck with a vengeance, probably making up for the poopy June weather we had last year. Stupid heat. Don’t get me wrong; I looove Summer and the heat and sun that comes with it! But when the weather gets up to 103 degrees with humidity that can melt your face, I start longing for the chilly days of Fall.

Where am I going with this…? Well, I’m trying to justify my not keeping up with my crochet themed blog. I hate that I’m paying for a domain name and I haven’t posted in a month. But really, with the heat I just haven’t wanted to sit around with a ball of yarn on my sweaty lap. So, I’ve decided that since my crochet projects kind of wane during the summer months I’m going to fulfill your lives with bits of my life outside of my hobby. Maybe I’ll have a weekly series about what I’ve been doing lately, or some snapshots of my day to day. Gotta love social media.

Anywho, my summer has been awesome so far! With a spontaneous road trip to the East Coast and landing a new job in my profession I’m feeling like I’m in a happy place right now =)

 

 

Best Birthday Present EVER?

Maybe not ever, but pretty damn sweet! So remember when  in my last post I mentioned that I had something to share for my sister’s birthday?… Well she had her birthday this past weekend so I can finally show off my gift for her! I’ll preface it by letting you know that my sister LOVES Pac Man.  We grew up with a table top Pac Man machine in our basement where my sisters and I would spend hours playing.  The sounds of Pac Man gobbling up yellow dots and those elusive fruits was always coming from our basement (wakka wakka wakka wakka wakka).  In fact, Krystle is so obsessed with Pac Man that she has the little yellow dude and Inky, Blinky, Pinky and Clyde tattoo’d on her! So when I came across a pattern on Ravelry for Pac Man and the ghosts I couldn’t resist.  I don’t know how I kept it a secret from her for so long and didn’t show her as soon as I finished…

I’m happy to report that she looooves them! Their eyes are kind of wonky  and it looks like they’re wearing skirts, but that’s just the perfectionist in me.. They’re so fun and easy to make, I wouldn’t mind making them again! Maybe a Mrs. PacMan?? Hmmm!!…

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I’m still here! And with a baby afghan to show you.

I have a confession. And I’m probably not the only ‘blogger’ who does this.  Sometimes I wait weeks to post about a craft or project I’ve done. =O UH OH SECRET’S OUT!! Seriously though, I have things I’ve finished months ago that I haven’t posted about simply because either I forget, I neglected to take a somewhat professional photo of it, or I’m just overwhelmed by the thought of it possibly being a very involved post. However! The semester has come to an anticlimactic ending, and I now have so much free time that I’m planning to be more active in my posting.  Wait, did I say free time? Just yesterday I felt overwhelmed with all of the things I need to get done now that I’m not worrying about deadlines with school! This is why I’ve been AWOL from my blog. Library school is way more involved than I could have ever imagined. But the crochet hooker is still alive and kickin, and swamped with summer projects which I need to find motivation to finish.  It always seems so hard to sit down with a skein of yarn and my hooks when the sun is shining bright in the sky and the birds are beckoning me outside. Of course, I can always work on things outside, but who wants to fuss with a big afghan on your lap when it’s 75 or 80 degrees outside?? Not this gal.

Anywho, I recently finished a baby granny-square afghan! Commissioned by a friend to make it for her friend, it turned out ADORABLE. it was just a simple granny square pattern, but the colors go really well together and it was so nice and cozy that I know any baby would be obliged to sleep with it. Granted it did take me a lottt longer to make and put together than I had anticipated. That’s okay though, it gave me something to do while I listened to audiobooks for my young adult literature class =) Lots of people are amazed I can crochet and listen to an audiobook at the same time.. multitasking!

Since my last post, I’ve been busy with lots of projects which I’ll share now that I can shift my attention from schoolwork to hobbies (I promise!) Previews: another granny square afghan that is a whooole lot more advanced than this, a family of beard hats, and a birthday present for my sister!! I’m way too excited about this last one! Stay tuned!

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p.s. I’m starting a new job today at a car dealership. (Is my excitement just exuding through the computer?) I worked as a cashier/receptionist for the last 5 years in another dealership and thought I was getting away from that. But hey, a job is a job right? Wish me luck!

Itsy Bitsy Spider

As a library science student, I obviously love books.  But what I love most is finding fun ways to do more than just read them.  I love to do more interactive activities and find ways to get kids into reading.  My friend Beth has a beautiful baby gal named Brooke and when she came to me and asked if I could recreate her favorite book character, I jumped on it!  The book is Itsy Bitsy Spider by Kate Toms

I haven’t had a chance to take a gander of the book, but apparently Brooke goes crazy over Itsy! So when Beth showed me the cover of the book it looked fairly simple to recreate.  The shape is just a flattened pear shape and the feet, big long tear drops.  I’m so happy with how he turned out! His legs are kind of wonky and dangly, but he’s handsome nonetheless.  I’m  happy to report that Brooke loves her Itsy!  Hopefully she doesn’t love him to pieces…

Itsy and I had a photo shoot =P What is your favorite character you’d love to pieces?

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