Yarn Along

Happy Wednesday!  Can you believe it’s July already? Me neither. This summer is slipping away! This morning when I looked at the outside temp it was 44 degrees. Brrr. Because we have our air conditioning on instead of heat, it got down to 65 degrees in the house. Perfect for sleeping, so even my youngest who is usually up early stayed in bed a little longer this morning. But at least the sun is shining today so it should warm up. After 2 rainy days keeping us indoors, it will be nice to be able to go outside and play with our kittens.

Speaking of kittens…

We have four adorable kittens. They are six-and-a-half weeks old today. And so much fun to watch. I just love watching them practice their pouncing. It’s hilarious!


Yarn Along

Once again I’m going to link up with Ginny at Small Things for this week’s Yarn Along!

~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs.  I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~

I know I get a bit long-winded at times, so this week I’ll TRY to keep it short and sweet! 🙂

On My Needles

1) Kingdom Gloves: PROGRESS HAS BEEN MADE! Amazing. I know. But 2 days of administering my 8th grade son’s standardized tests (as required for homeschoolers by the state of MN) means a lot of time where I need to be present and quiet. So once I get him started on a test, I either read or knit. I decided to work on the gloves because the quiet atmosphere allowed me to really concentrate on the cable pattern.  Not only did I finish knitting the right-hand glove, I started the left one too!  Woot!

2014-07-02 09.12.12 cable knitting

{You can see I still have to do some weaving in ends and seaming between fingers as well as sewing the cuff’s inside layer where it belongs, so it’s not all done, but the knitting part is!}

2) Simplicity Socks: This is my take-along project. During the kids’ swim lessons, or whenever we’re going somewhere and I think I *might* have time to knit, I grab the bag I keep this project in. So I’ve made a little progress on these also.

3) Mendel sweater: Finished my swatch. After washing and drying, I think my gauge matches the pattern’s. I will check it once more before I cast-on this project though.


My Book Reviews:

I decided to quit reading Graceling by Kristin Cashore.  I don’t enjoy reading books with descriptive scenes of intimacy–it’s not my style. And it really disappointed me that the author had the {rather young} characters choose to have sex without the commitment of marriage.  Unfortunately, it’s a reflection of what a lot of people think is perfectly acceptable behavior nowadays.  But it completely ruined the story for me. I’m usually very careful to read reviews before choosing a book by an author I’ve never read before. But too bad for me…I obviously hadn’t read enough reviews on Graceling to know I shouldn’t waste good reading time just to get half-way through the book and quit.

Still Reading:

One Realm Beyond  Force Heretic Remnant cover

Although, technically I’m still reading the others in my last post’s list, these two have been getting my attention the most this week.

1) One Realm Beyond by Donita K. Paul I’m really enjoying this story now that I’ve gotten into it a little more. Bixby is such a funny and interesting character…can’t wait to see what more happens in the rest of the story! {And I know I can trust Donita’s writing!}

2) Star Wars The New Jedi Order: Force Heretic I: Remnant by Sean Williams Having read a TON of Star Wars books, I pretty much know what to expect with this one too. Just plodding along, seeing where the storyline goes next. 🙂

Show and tell?!

I’d love to see your current projects too! Once again, let me remind you that my Facebook page {perfectioKnits’ Facebook page} is open for you to share photos of what you’re working on. Or leave a link to your project’s Ravelry page if you prefer. Also, I’m using Instagram more and more these days {follow me: perfectioknits}, so tag me if you’re sharing project photos and want me to see them. Thanks!

And be sure to leave a comment below before you go! I look forward to hearing from you!

As always, happy knitting and reading!



Knitting and Reading: June edition

Yarn Along 6.18.14

I’m going to link up with Ginny again this week at Small Things for this week’s Yarn Along!

~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs.  I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~

Evidently it’s been a month since my last knitting and reading update. Ugh. I can’t believe how incredibly busy I am, but how seriously neglected this blog is. I *want* to write posts once or twice a week at least…real, meaningful posts! But then life happens, I guess.

I thought I’d go back and give a quick review of the books and projects I was working on when I wrote my last Yarn Along update today. And then share what new things I’m working on too.

Knitting Update

Old projects

1) Kingdom Gloves:  I’ve lost interest in this one…for now. I know I’ll come back to it. But I’ve only finished one more finger since I wrote about it last month.

knit gloves

2) Mystery Mitts, size Large: Still working on this too…but it’s mostly hibernating right now as well.

(no photo–its’ still a secret!)

New projects (you know–the ones I’m actually working on right now):

3) I’ve started knitting my hubby a new pair of socks. Same yarn as the only other pair I’ve made for him, but this time I’m using a toe-up pattern “Simplicity” by Melissa Morgan-Oakes. Pattern is in her book Toe-Up 2-at-a-Time Socks.  Hopefully this new pair will fit a tad better–his other pair is a just a smidge too large and get a little loose when he wears them.

toe-up 2-at-a-time knitting

4) Mendel:  I’ve started swatching for this sweater project, but need to finish the swatch and then wash/dry it to make sure that the gauge doesn’t change significantly. So far, it looks like my stitch gauge is right on with the US 6 needles I have, but my row gauge is off a little so I might need to do a little math to make sure it’s shaped correctly.

knitting swatch

Reading Update

Last month I wrote about the EIGHT books I had in my currently-reading list. Crazy, right? Well, I finished a few, started and finished a few more, and am currently reading a total of  (only) SIX right now.

Finished (my reviews)

1) Heiress by Susan May Warren Honestly, this was not my favorite book by Susan May Warren.  She’s still one of my favorite authors, but I much prefer her Deep Haven series. I ended up giving this one 4 out of 5 stars on Goodreads.  The characters and setting were realistic enough…perhaps too realistic for my fantasy-loving taste? I liked how it ended, but getting there–especially about mid-way through the book–was a struggle for me. A couple times I was so mad at the characters that I didn’t want to read any more! But I’m glad to have finished it and to see how the author redeemed/resolved the different situations.  If you really love Christian historical fiction, you might really enjoy this one.

2) Death Comes to Pemberley by P. D. James This one only got 3 stars from me. I really liked the beginning…how the characters were developed and the murder mystery revealed. But there’s a point in the book where it gets rather dull and boring. Not enough action, just a lot of talking. Eventually, it gets a bit more action again and my interest picked back up, but getting through the dull part was a bit tedious at times.  Still, as a huge fan of Jane Austen, it was fun to see how another fan used her characters and setting for a story like this. And learning that P. D. James wrote the book at age 91…impressive!

3)Uncovering the Logic of English by Denise Eide  EXCELLENT! I can’t say enough of how exciting it is to me to read a book that actually makes sense of the English language. I’ve always been a good reader and speller, but I’m a visual learner and remember easily the shape of words. For my younger son who really has struggled with reading, I have hope that this method of teaching the foundations (starting with phonograms or “sound pictures” and then learning to put them together into words and then sentences AS WELL AS learning rules for spelling!) will be the program that actually gets him to learn how to read.  We’re only about halfway through the Foundations of English Book A (the curriculum by Logic of English for younger students) and we’ve found the lessons engaging and fun for the most part. I love that they teach handwriting along with learning the phonograms…no need to get a separate handwriting curriculum!

4) How Am I Smart:  A Parent’s Guide to Multiple Intelligences by Dr. Kathy Koch  Another helpful book! This has been my introduction to the concept of multiple intelligences. I love that Dr. Koch writes from a Christian perspective and explains the different intelligences with examples and easy-to-remember labels such as “body smart” or “picture smart”. It’s been fun to try and see which “smarts” are my sons’ natural strengths and which smarts maybe need a little development. Being able to encourage my son who struggles with reading by reminding him he has other areas where he naturally excels has helped me as a parent. I can remind him that we all have different smarts that don’t come easy–for him it happens to be reading which is probably a combination of his word and picture smarts needing developed–and they require a bit more effort to learn. The cool thing is that we can develop those areas that aren’t natural strengths.

Started and Finished since last post

5) Lemon Meringue Pie Murder (Hannah Swenson, #4) by Joanne Fluke  I started this series  a while ago. My public library has them on their ebook site, so they’re easy to check out and read on my Kindle.  An easy to read whodunnit…somewhat predictable, but I like the characters and still enjoy reading them.

6) Fudge Cupcake Murder (Hannah Swenson, #5) by Joanne Fluke  Obviously, I continued in the same series and read the next book too! Another enjoyable, quick read.

Still Reading…but with rather slow progress

Force Heretic Remnant cover A Princess of Mars cover Say Goodbye to Survival Mode cover Praying for Boys cover

1) Star Wars The New Jedi Order: Force Heretic I: Remnant by Sean Williams  My bathroom read. I enjoy it one or two pages at a time.

2) A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs  I still like reading this on my iPhone when I don’t have another book with me and want to read fiction.

3) Say Good-bye to Survival Mode by Crystal Paine I need to get back into this one! I got the e-book version when it was on sale, thinking I’d read it on my phone. But I’ve been on a fiction kick lately so it’s just sitting there, waiting.

4) Praying for Boys by Brooke McGlothlin Same thing goes for this one…just haven’t been reading as much non-fiction the past couple weeks. I’m sure I’ll get back to it someday soon.

New books I’ve started recently

One Realm Beyond Graceling

5) One Realm Beyond by Donita K. Paul Another of my favorite authors, Donita writes Christian fantasy. This is her newest book. I’ve only read a few chapters, but I can tell it’s going to be good! (My 14 yo son has already read it and says it’s very good!)

6) Graceling by Kristin Cashore  Checked this fantasy book out from the library e-book site. Because I only have it for two weeks (unless I need to renew it), I tend to read library e-books much faster than paper books. I think I read faster when I read on my Kindle too.

So that’s this week’s (month’s?) update.

It’s show-and-tell time!

I’d love to see your current projects too! Would you be willing to share photos of your projects on my Facebook page? If it’s a knit or crochet project, be sure to tell what pattern and yarn you’re using!

And be sure to leave a comment below before you go! I look forward to hearing from you!

Happy knitting and reading!


Knitting and Reading Update

Yarn Along 5.14.14

I’m going to link up with Ginny this week at Small Things for this week’s Yarn Along!

~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs.  I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~

Knitting Update: On My Needles

1) Kingdom Gloves by Becky Herrick.  I’ve only made it through 2 fingers at the time I’m writing this.  Perhaps I’ll work a little on the next finger tonight. Or not.  My brain is tired.

knit gloves

2) Larger version of my Mystery Mitts  (new design I’m developing) Due to the nature of my wanting to reveal it when the pattern is ready, I’m not posting any pics!

And that’s ALL.

Which is rather weird for me.

I think I need to cast on a pair of socks just so I have another project in progress!

And since the Kingdom gloves have so much detailing–fancy cuffs, cables, fingers, cabled fingers!–a simple or easy sock pattern would be a nice go-to project for when my brain is too tired to concentrate. After a quick peek at my extensive queue, I’ve decided Cookie A.’s Monkey socks look like a great pattern. I’ve seen lots of other knitters have made pairs of Monkey socks over past few years, but for some unknown reason I haven’t.  Perhaps it’s time.

Reading Update:  The Many Books I’m Reading

As usual, I’m working on a BUNCH of different books.  {I’m only including the ones I’m reading on my own. If I added all the homeschool books I’m reading with/to my kids, you’d probably think I’m insane.}


Force Heretic Remnant cover  A Princess of Mars cover  Heiress cover  Death Comes to Pemberley cover

1) Star Wars The New Jedi Order: Force Heretic I: Remnant (A book I’ve been reading off and on for…ahem…2 or 3 years. Have finally put it where I can read it on a regular basis: the bathroom! Ha! Seriously though, I’ve gotten interested in the Star Wars series again.  I think I just needed a break from it for a while. I’m looking forward to the new movie, but knowing they’re basically scrapping the whole Star Wars Extended Universe makes me a little sad too.)

2) A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs (I’m reading this via my Goodreads app on my iPhone.  It’s nice to have a book to read as long as I’ve got my phone with me!)

3) Heiress by Susan May Warren (I had paused in my reading of this one for a while, but have picked it up my old Kindle and continued the story where I left off.)

4) Death Comes to Pemberley by P. D. James (I’m reading this one on my Kindle Fire. Right now it’s my go-to book if I want to read before bed.)


Uncovering the Logic of English cover  Say Goodbye to Survival Mode cover  Praying for Boys cover  How am I smart cover

1) Uncovering the Logic of English by Denise Eide (An amazing look at the English language explaining the various phonograms and the LOGIC…yes, that’s right…of how and when to use them for reading and spelling. Having a child who is a struggling reader, I’ve pursued finding the “right” method to teach him so he best understands. Not only did I get Denise’s book at a homeschool conference we recently attended, but we bought the Foundations series to teach him with.  And although he still complains about how he “hates reading,” once we start a lesson he *almost* enjoys it! So far, I’m really happy with it and am recommending the program!

2) Say Good-bye to Survival Mode by Crystal Paine (I’ve just started this one, but am hoping to glean some tips for time management from her.)

3) Praying for Boys by Brooke McGlothlin (I’m also reading this one on my iPhone, but using the Kindle app.)

4) How Am I Smart:  A Parent’s Guide to Multiple Intelligences by Dr. Kathy Koch (I don’t actually have this book right now.  I started reading it a few weeks ago, but had to return it to the library before I finished it.  Have requested it again in hopes of being able to finish it! Hoping it comes in soon!)

Phew!  That’s quite a list!  It’s no wonder it sometimes takes me a long time to finish a book.  But I do find myself focusing on a single book when the story has drawn me in to the point that I don’t want to put it down!

Tell me:  what are you knitting and/or reading these days?

Let me know by leaving a comment below. Hearing from my readers puts a smile on my face! It really makes my day!

Thanks for stopping by the blog today!  Hope you enjoyed today’s post!

And as always, happy knitting (and reading)!


On My Needles: Bigger on the Inside week 2

Bigger on the Inside Shawl

Is it REALLY Wednesday ALREADY?!?!? This week has just flown by.

I’ve forced myself to focus only on knitting this Bigger on the Inside shawl/scarf because I really want to finish it ASAP. I’ve been itching to start another pair of socks, but so far have not let myself.  As you can see in my photo, I’ve finished the lace section and have begun the TARDIS motif section. The hardest part so far was picking up and knitting 311 stitches evenly across the bottom edge of it.  At times, the TARDIS chart gets a tad confusing, but I just take my time and really think it through at the beginning of each row. Once I get it figured out, I’m good to go and can remember the pattern of the stitches for the rest of the row. Thank goodness!

Yarn Along, On My Needles

What I’m Reading Now

I finished the Doctor Who book Plague of the Cybermen just this morning. It really was a good read for a fan-girl like me.  I thought about reading another in the Doctor Who series–I’ve still got a couple more checked out from my local library–but my sister-in-law pointed me to a series by Colleen Coble that happens to be set in Hawaii on the island of Kauai. Distant Echoes is the first in the Aloha Reef Series. I just got it from the library a few days ago, and since we recently visited the Big Island I’ve decided to go ahead and start it.  I think I’ll enjoy reading this one even though we haven’t been to that particular island yet. (Kauai is next on my islands-to-visit-wish-list though!) I’ve just barely started reading the book so can’t say yet whether it’s good or not, but my sister-in-law said she enjoyed it so I probably will too.

Chelsea’s Light Foundation (or helping a fellow knitter)

If you follow my Facebook page (if not, please do!), you may have seen my post yesterday with a link to a page on Ravelry. If you were unable to get to the page right away, I apologize! Ravelry needs you to sign in to see forum post pages and then it sounds like Ravelry may have had some issues besides–perhaps due to the increase in traffic to that page.  If you sign in to Ravelry and check out the page now by clicking this link, you’ll see that they were seeking out knitters who were willing to knit one of a few specific items for Chelsea’s Light Foundation.  Although I’d never heard of this Foundation before, I was moved to offer my knitting abilities to help out a fellow knitter.  I am a newbie runner as well as a knitter so perhaps that’s why it really struck a chord in my soul. Kelly (Chelsea’s mom) usually knits these items herself but because she’s been busy organizing the next Finish Chelsea’s Run she has run out of time to make all the items that she gives to the Foundation’s scholarship winners. I feel blessed to be able to help her out in this way.  Dream in Color is sending out the yarns they want us to use, so as soon as they get here I’ll be casting on the Autumn Fern Mobius. In the meanwhile, I hope to get as far as I can on Patty’s Bigger on the Inside shawl, because I’ll want to focus on the Mobius scarf which needs to be finished before the end of November.  If you didn’t get to help with this project, but are interested in helping Chelsea’s Light Foundation, check out Chelsea’s Shawl and see if a yarn shop near you (or one you shop from online) carries them. Of course, you can just give a donation on their site if you feel led to do so.  Personally, I love seeing how the knitting community steps up to help each other out!  Please take a minute and check it out.  Thanks!

So this is my Yarn Along and WIP Wednesday post for this week. Congrats to Ginny at Small Things on the birth of her sweet baby boy!  At this time, I don’t see a link-up post on her blog Small Things, so I’ll only be linking up with Tami’s WIP Wednesday post this week, I guess. If you knit, be sure to join in the fun!

As always, happy knitting!



On My Needles: Bigger on the Inside Shawl

What’s On My Needles Now?

A dear friend sent me a bunch of yarn for my birthday. Sweet, right?! There’s enough for me to make 2 shawls…one for her and a matching one for myself!  Yeah!

When the yarn arrived, we were in Hawaii–on the Big Island. Our much-needed-and-planned-for-months-in-advance-family-vacation just happened to have been scheduled for soon after my dad died. In fact, we left right after the funeral driving to the Twin Cities where we flew out early the next morning! Crazy stuff! I’m still so thankful that, despite our family’s loss and time of grieving, we were able to go.  It was a blessing to be able to spend those next 2 weeks just as a family, enjoying another beautiful place on this lovely planet we call home without the added stresses of work and school.

Of course, being in Hawaii meant I had to wait until we got back home before I could get started knitting the shawls.  But it didn’t take me long once we were home to do a little swatching to determine which needle size to use and then cast on for the first one!  I’m working on my friend’s shawl first because her birthday is in just a couple weeks and I hope to have it done as her birthday gift! (We’ll see if I can find enough time to work on it and get it done in time!)

Bigger on the Inside

This shawl was designed with Doctor Who fans in mind. The lacy section is lovely and then there is the TARDIS lace motif as well!  It’s classy, yet perfectly geek-ish, if you know what I mean!

I’m just under halfway through the lacy section.  Isn’t it pretty?!

Knit Shawl

I think it will look wonderful once I’ve finished and can block the lace open more so you can really see the lacework.

Doctor Who Books

In keeping with the Doctor Who theme, I must share that I’ve been reading some Doctor Who books lately.  (I’ve been having a bit of withdrawal waiting for the 50th special and the new season.) So I checked with my local library and found they had a few of the 50th anniversary books!  Cool!  I’m currently reading Plague of the Cybermen by Justin Richards.  It’s pleasantly creepy. Just like watching an episode!  Well, maybe not *quite* that good, but pretty close.  I’ve checked out about 4 other Doctor Who books too.  Not sure I’ll have time to read them all before they’re due back though.

Not having enough time seems to also be a theme in today’s post. Hmmm. One of those time-turners like what Hermione used in the Harry Potter series (I re-read books 1-3 while we were on vacation!) would sure be nice.  More time for reading and knitting would be wonderful, wouldn’t you agree?

Want to knit your own TARDIS shawl?

Here’s my Bigger on the Inside shawl info on Ravelry.  From there you can check out the pattern–it’s free on knitty.com!–as well as see what yarn and needle size I’m using. And if I post any helpful project notes, they’ll be right there too!

So what’s on YOUR needles this week?

Leave me a comment and tell me about your current knitting or crochet projects!  If you’re a knit-blogger like myself, be sure to leave a link to your own WIP Wednesday or Yarn Along post and I’ll be sure to stop by and leave a comment for you too!  I’ll be linking up this post with Ginny’s Yarn Along.

Happy knitting!


Yarn Along: Almondine Socks

~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs.  I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~ Ginny at Small Things

Knitting Update: Almondine Socks

Somehow in the past couple weeks, I’ve found a bit of time here and there–in between knitting and writing up my tutorials for my Early Morning Mitts–to work on the Almondine socks too.  I’ve now completed the leg, heel flap, heel turn and am nearly finished with the gusset. I always feel like once I get past the heel turn and gusset I am almost done. That’s usually when I don’t want to stop working on them until they’re finished and I can wear them!

Knitting and reading

Reading Recommendations

A lot of the books I’m reading now are for our homeschool. But if I have a little time to read for fun, I will read a page or two of The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey.  I’m still enjoying the story. Albeit, slowly.

My hubby and I both love books.  So a few years ago when I was crocheting baby blankets like a crazy woman, we figured out a relatively easy way that we could enjoy reading some books together.  So we find a book that we think we’d both enjoy and my hubby reads it out loud to me while I knit or crochet.  Somehow this summer got so busy that we’d stopped.  But I recently found a new book for us to try and once again he has started reading to me. I just love it!  We don’t have time every evening, but when we do he will usually read a chapter or two.  The book we’re reading now is On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness to me. It’s hilarious!  Thanks to whichever blogger that was reading it a few weeks ago and recommended this book in her WIP Wednesday post. Of course, I can’t remember who (I really need to start writing stuff down more!) so I can’t even link back to her post.

Well, today’s post is short. I hope you’ve found it sweet as well!

I’ll be linking up with Ginny at Small Things today.  Be sure to stop by her blog and check out the other blogs that have linked up.

Happy knitting and reading too!


Knitting and Reading

~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs.  I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~ Ginny at Small Things


Heartland Lace Shawl

I’ve continued working on my shawl. And at some point in the past couple weeks I realized that it’s not the Crow Prints shawl pattern that I’m using (although that’s a pretty shawl too), but rather the Heartland Lace Shawl by Evelyn A. Clark. I think when I was getting ready to start the project back in 2011, I was debating between the two patterns. At one point, I was pretty sure I was going to knit the Crow Prints Shawl, but evidently I must have finally decided on the Heartland Lace instead.  My shawl’s name on Ravelry now properly reflects the pattern I’m using.

If you follow my Facebook page–you do don’t you?–then you already know I had a minor issue with the transition between charts. (It was late, I was tired, and just couldn’t figure out that I needed to move all my stitch markers at the beginning of the new chart!)  I set it aside for a couple days, then took a look at it again when I wasn’t overtired, and easily figured it out.

I’m now on Row 17 of 32. I should be finishing it soon even though helping with our church’s Vacation Bible School is taking up all my regular knitting time this week.

WIP Wednesday



Dragons of the Valley by Donita K. Paul

I finally finished reading this one.  It was a good read as all of the books I’ve read by Donita K. Paul have been. If you like dragons, made up worlds, and stories that point to the Truth, then you will enjoy any of Donita’s books.

Currently reading

Heiress by Susan May Warren

In many ways the main character of Heiress reminds me of Lady Sybil from Downton Abbey.  If you’re fan of Downton, you might enjoy this series too!

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey by Trenton Lee Stewart

I’ve just barely begun reading the second Mysterious Benedict Society book.  The characters are getting ready for their next adventure. I can’t wait to find out what happens to them this time!

Once again, I’m linking up with Ginny’s Yarn Along and Tami’s WIP Wednesday. If you’re looking for book recommendations or pattern ideas, be sure to head over to their blogs and see what others have posted too!

Happy knitting and reading!