Christmas Memory Lane

I’m still working on that Mara Penny Taste of Home Color! adult coloring book, and came across a page that stirred a lot of good memories.  Let’s take a walk down Christmas memory lane, shall we?

Colored Christmas Ornaments from TOH Color! book drawn by Mara Penny.

These ornaments remind me of my grandmother. Every year on Christmas Eve the entire family would meet at her home.  We’d pile presents around the tree.  Next, we’d have a nice dinner that my grandmother would have made.  I remember looking up at the chandelier right above the dining room table, and she would have hung ornaments similar to these on it.  Here’s were shiny blue, silver, gold, and other bright colors.  You could see your reflection in them.  I found them fascinating.

That’s why I had to color in this page.  It stirred fantastic childhood memories.

My aunt and uncle live in that same house now with the the same chandelier, and my aunt hangs the same ornaments from it.  She told me that her mother, my grandmother, bought them for the reason that they would fascinate her children, my two aunts and my father.  Next, the fascinated her grandchildren.  Now, they fascinate her great-grandchildren, too.

Aunt Ellen hangs those ornaments in memory of her mother, and I’m glad she does!

Oh, to finish up telling you about the Christmas Eve traditions.  After dinner, it was time to get dressed and go to church for the service that night.  It was always a lovely service, complete with a singing of “Silent Night” with everyone holding candles.

Funny, I’d look up at the candelabras in the sanctuary and see the reflections of hundreds points of light in their polished bronze.

After church, we’d open that massive pile of presents.  My grandfather would always put the wrapping paper in the lit fireplace to burn it up.

Next, my tired sisters and myself would pile into the family van, and go home and sleep to get ready for Christmas Day.  Still, Christmas Eve always had a magical touch to it.

I want to wish you and yours a wonderful Christmas!

Sputnik, Destroyer of Yarn

I would like to introduce everyone to a our new dog, Sputnik!  He’s a Great Pyrenees/Labrador mix, hence a “pyrador,” and is six months old.  Sputnik is going to be a BIG boy.

My husband and I got him from LaMancha Animal Rescue in Unionville, Pennsylvania, USA, not far from Coatesville.

LaMancha is a beautiful rescue facility!  They are a working farm with chickens, cows, horses, and, of course, dogs in clean kennels and cats in a special house to adopt.

Sputnik’s story is that he came from Alabama, USA, where he was a stray.  LaMancha transported him here, called him Zeus, and he was barely there a week until Sam and I snatched him up.

We were going to LaMancha to see two other dogs and didnt’ know about Sputnik until we got there.  When we arrived, we were told that the one had been adopted, and the other one we walked for a little bit, and he seemed frightened.  Not a match.  We asked about the other dogs there, and were told about Zeus.  We walked him on a trail on the farm (all the dogs get walks there), and were treated to kissed, hugs, and was known as the Pyr Lean.  Great Pyrenees will lean into you really hard you pet them.

We had our dog.

Sputnik was put into the back seat of my car, and I was treated to hugs and kisses on the way home as I was sitting back there with him.  Here’s a video of me introducing him.

Sputnik is going to pose a challenge when it comes to knitting.  I’ve knit in the room with him just fine, but one time he got a good grip on luckily some cheap yarn, and ripped it one space.  Granted, he’s a puppy.  Everything is a toy right now.  We will work on this.

How to do your dogs react to your knitting?  Any advice for a knitter with a large puppy who’s very interested in stuff in general?

When Coloring Meets Knitting

I love adult coloring books.  I really do.  To be honest, I’ve been working on that more than knitting right now.  I’m still knitting, of course, but I need to give my hands something else to do at the moment, so coloring it is!

I got Taste of Home’s Color! Winter 2017 coloring book by Mara Penny at a grocery store check out line.  It was a total impulse purchase, of course, due to the strategic placing of said book.  I paged through it.  They had a page devoted to yarn and knitting notions.  Yup, totally bought it.

The picture above is a section of the page, but here is my completed page below.

Yarn page from Taste of Home Winter 2017 adult coloring book

This was a fun page to color, mostly because of the subject matter for me.  Still, it was fun to get creative and to get my thought processes churning on how I was going to fill out each skein, color each button, where to place colors, etc.  I love stuff like that.

Here’s another page I did of birds from the same book

Birds page from the Winter 2017 Taste of Home coloring book

I love songbirds, and have feeders up for them in my yard, so they had to get some coloring love, too.

Do you color?  If so, awesome!  Show me your work!  If not, and if you’d like to, it’s not hard to get started.  Here are the supplies I use.

Otherwise, here are some of my tips and tricks into making adult coloring easier.

  • Use GOOD colored pencils.  Don’t use the Crayola ones, and don’t use the Prismacolor Scholar once, too.  Staedtler Noris Color pencils are great pencils, too.  They erase ok.  As a rule of thumb, don’t skimp on your pencils; get artist quality.
  • Get a GOOD sharpener.  A simple metal sharpener is great.  Sometimes they have a small bore for general sharpening and a larger bore for fine tuning your point.  A sharp pencil is a happy and good pencil for coloring.
  • Get a GOOD eraser.  There are tons of artist pencil erasers to choose from.  This is one case where Prismacolor’s Scholar line is ok.
  • There are so many themed adult coloring books out there.  Pick one, pick a few!

Good tools are key to less frustration when it comes to coloring in your pages.  Seriously.

I hope that a few fellow adult coloring book artists are out there, and maybe I inspired more of you out there to join our ranks.  It really is a lovely and relaxing activity!