About Me

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Illinois, United States
I am a band director at five private schools in Kankakee. Music is a big part of my life, but knitting and crafting are right up there too. I own a ridiculous stash of yarn, which I am slowly using... and replacing with better yarn... I tend to knit and crochet a lot, in class, out of class, while watching tv, while driving, pretty much constantly. I have been involved with crochet romantically for 15 years, and involved with knitting for 11 years. They sometimes get jealous of each other. I think its funny. Along with knitting and crocheting, I quilt, spin (drop spindle) and design patterns!!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Giveaway Winner!

The winner is......

*drum roll*

Jordan from the blog In it to knit it!

http://iitki.blogspot.com/

Please email me your address when you see this so that I can send it to you!



For this giveaway, and all the next ones, I would like to "fit" the giveaway to the person I randomly choose (through a random number generator).

I see that Jordan knits and crochets a whole bunch of cutesy stuff, so expect some cutesy things along with the care package!

All I ask is you post pictures of your package in your blog when it comes so I can keep it in my archives! (I won't spoil the surprise!)


Congrats again!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

The days are getting longer!

I have been keeping myself busy. Which is not always a good thing. I student teach every weekday, from 7:45 am to around 4:30-5:00 pm every night. After school its a bunch of lessons which I love. It's always fun to work one on one with different students. Every one is at a different level, and its sometimes challenging to help each student achieve better playing ability. But It's something I look forwards to as a teacher!

Job hunt is moving along. 8 different schools applied for so far. I am really crossing my fingers for a small town like Casey or Carlyle. They would be my dream job. I would rather not head back up to Chicago to teach, just because I have experienced Chicago. And I am ready for small towns and cornfields!

But for now all I can do is search and apply. And knit of course!

First up: I am attempting to empty my store of knitted scarves and hats because it is getting warmer and I would rather not attempt to store them. So check out my shop on Etsy, see if theres anything you like and use the coupon code CASEYBANDTRIP to get free shipping. I have already lowered (by half) all the prices for the scarves and hats, among other things! So its the best time to buy!!!

http://www.etsy.com/shop/luganchica102


So. I finished up one of my big projects. I bound off the last few stitches 20 minutes before I had to go to work. And I was so excited! Got back from work.... realized I dont have any of my pins that I use for blocking. I thought.... "hmmm maybe I can get away with just soaking it and attempting to lay it flat." But there are far too many loops and I am positive it would not hold very well. So tomorrow I am going to stop by Walmart to pick up some pins...

But here are some pics of the finished project, laying out on the only space big enough to hold it... my bed....

This is my Eliina Shawl by Lankakomero. I love it. Love it. Love it.


I knit it up with the Malabrigo Yarn Lace yarn I won for donating money to my friend and fellow knitter Sarah. You can find her at http://www.rainloverknits.com/ She is an awesome person, and I am glad I got to help her graduate! (Plus the yarn wasn't too bad of a win!)


Look at that lacey edge! I love it! It took forever to bind off. And I was getting pretty antsy. But seriously. This shawl is huge! I cannot wait to block it. I cannot wait to find a way to wear it. I cannot wait to snuggle up with it and rub it all over my face. Because. If you have every worked with Malabrigo yarn... you would understand. BTW. The colors of ^ are the most accurate of the pictures that I have so far! I will attempt to get some daylight going tomorrow so I can take better pics after I block it!


Love me some stripes.


This was not a complicated pattern. If you can do yarn overs and decreases, then you are set. Its big. I didn't check gauge cause I really didn't care to. And I am glad I didnt, because I love how it came out!

Next up is the scrap scarf I was working on a couple posts ago. I received some great scraps in the mail for RAK in the past week, which made me sad because I had already finished this scarf! So it looks like I will be making another one!



I am not a huge green fan, but it seems like I have knit a bunch of green in my years. I just used scraps for this, all weights. You have some bulky, some lace, some sock, some worsted. Everything. It adds to the texture and the uniqueness of this scarf.


I plan to sell it, or give it away as a gift. But I want to start stocking my shop with more purses and summery stuff. Just because no one really wants to buy winter stuff during the summer. Right?

Next up, my Citron. I am halfway ish done. It is an easy pattern, something I can do while there is nothing to do during ST prep period. My CT walks around the gym during the periods we have free, so I grab a seat next to the heater and knit a little until the kids come. It helps me from chewing my nails off. Which I will do when I have nothing to do. Seriously.


Now I have taken to spinning. I love it. It is relaxing and I enjoy doing it. Too bad it takes forever because I am working off of a drop spindle. When I graduate, I have asked my parents to by me a spinning wheel. Cause I swear, spinning will be my thing.

I bought some more roving, since the leftovers I have won't amount to much. I try and keep at least 4 ounces of roving in my apartment at one time, so I can just pick up the next project. I bought this awesome stuff at http://www.etsy.com/shop/woolgatherings Go there. Buy something. Make something out of it. great store!

Doesn't it just make you feel happy?

:)

Last up are some stitch markers I bought. I love dark greens and dark blues. So so so so much.
I bought these to treat myself. I usually just use plain white boring stitch markers. But I decided, "I deserve nice stitch markers"

Am I glad that I decided that!
http://www.etsy.com/shop/fallingstitches
She has a great store. I had to hold myself back from buying anymore markers. It was a tough thing to bargain with myself. I would soo soo soo soo love another set. Especially since I am going to be working on lace more in the future. But alas. I will deal with the ones I have until I get more money!

How pretty are they! Squee!

Alright. Now for one of my goals. I want to lose 8 pounds by graduation. This is not a bunch of weight. You may look at me and say "what part of your body will that weight come off of?" (It's what they BF asks me whenever I talk about losing weight)

But heres why. I came to Eastern 5 years ago weighing 145. I reached.... 160ish, while I was dating a guy whose idea of making dinner was microwaving pizza rolls. Almost every night. And me being the type of person who wants to make everyone happy, dealt with it for over a year. And then I dealt with the breakup, eating away my problems.

That was 2ish years ago. And now I am with a great guy (Steve) who cooks for me, and makes sure I get my veggies in at every meal! Since my junior recital in April 2010, I have lost 6 pounds. So I balance around 154.

My goal by graduation is to be at the same weight I was when I got to college. 145.

So 9 pounds. That is all I have to lose in 3 months. I can do this. I have been going to Zumba every Wednesday after student teaching (if you have not experienced Zumba, do so. It is so much fun!) I am going to be taking Yoga classes Tuesday nights, and then on Thursdays and weekends I will try my best to make it to the gym to work out. Once it gets a little bit warmer outside I will start my running routine again.
Working out really does give me more energy, so I am excited to get back into a routine!

Lastly!!!

Tomorrow is the last day to sign up for my blog giveaway. I have some sock yarn, and lace yarn, and who knows what else to throw into a package. So if you read my blog, just comment on my last post! That is all you need to do!

I may extend it a little just because I want to make sure everyone gets a chance!

Alrighty. That is all for today. I hope to have some more projects done or started so I can make a new post soon!
Later homies.

Friday, February 18, 2011

New give away!

Hey followers! I am planning another giveaway!

This time it will be slightly smaller, but I promise it will still have a bunch of great items!
(look at the last post for an idea of what I may or may not send out!)

I am going to be picking out some awesome yarn for it, and then some other items.

Anything from buttons to books.

I will choose (randomly) who wins this giveaway on the 28th of February. So ten days from now.

How do you enter?

-Become a follower of my blog if you are not already, and then comment telling me about the most interesting thing you have ever made with yarn. (If you are already a follower you can still enter!)

-For a second entry to this giveaway favorite my Etsy shop - http://www.etsy.com/shop/luganchica102 (and let me know you did so!)

I will announce the winner in ten days! Good luck!


LOOK AT HOW MUCH KITTY LOVES ME! :)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Some updates on knitting progress!

First up, for my followers!

The giveaway that was last month has been received! (Mind you it took so long because it had to get through customs into Canada!)

She has posted pictures on her blog (http://teasin.blogspot.com/) that were wayyyy better than my pictures... I really need a better camera!

But here is what I included in her giveaway (it was the first one so I made sure to make it rather large!)






I included everything from yarn, to body spray, to fabric to tea.

I kept thinking about what I would want in a give-away, and I threw it all in a box and shipped it!

Next give away will be in a couple weeks, once I get some more job applications out! So keep reading!

Next up is a scarf a friend and fellow brother of Kappa Kappa Psi asked me to knit. Back in December. I knit it up when I was home for Christmas break, and then left it at home... *face palm* So I had to wait until my parents could find it so that they could send it to me. Of course the day I get it to her its going to be 65 degrees here in Charleston....

Sigh....
It was knit up in Homespun yarn, which can be a hassle, but I tend to favor it!

I reorganized my room last night, which is a huge feat because I have such a tiny room. I let my roomate have the bigger room when we moved in two years ago because... well I assumed she would have more stuff than me! In the end it turns out that my yarn storage and GIGANTIC desk took up most of the room.... I don't mind, I am barely home as it is, but it was horrible trying to move everything. Thankfully Steve came around and helped me!
Newly organized desk, moved in front of the window. (which makes me sad because I love the morning breeze. Of course when its warm outside...)
And theres my bed, which is literally right next to my desk. So you can imagine how tiny this room is...

Why did I rearrange everything? We have those little floorboard heaters, or whatever you call them in both of our rooms. I also have a heat lamp for my little buddy Terrence. So my room gets sweltering in the middle of the night if the heat is turned on. My bed used to be right next to the window, which in turn had it right against the wall with the heater. The roomies heat doesnt work too well in her room, unless you pump it to 60 ish, which for the record raises the heat in my room to a horrible 90 ish degrees.

And you can feel the wave of heat from between my bed and wall. I have found melted socks on my heater. My curtains have melted and bent.... my sheets have a hard melted edge because of the accidental dropping the sheet onto the heater.

Now you may ask, why does it get so hot in my room? Well besides the heat lamp, my room is tiny compared to hers, and it has a ton more stuff in it. So a little bit of heat goes a long way. I could survive without the heat turned on. I really could.

But heres the main reason it gets so hot. The thermostat is in the living room. Meaning if it gets turned on, the heat never stops flowing. Why? Because the living room is consistently cooler than our bedrooms, meaning its not picking up the heat in our rooms, but the lack of heat in the living room. Meaning, that whoever built this apartment has some screws loose in their head. Even if the heat is turned down to 40, the thermostat never catchs the correct heat, so it just keeps pumping and pumping and I die of heat exhaustion.

So I moved my bed away from the heater, it was way too much work. and now my room is still small. But it did not get as hot. So far. End of story...

This is the progress I have made on my Eliina Shawl by Lankakomero. I am loving it so much, I have the pattern down, its pretty easy considering I have not reached the lacy part yet. But I love this yarn, I love the colors. So pretty!

You can kind of see the colors and the subtle changes. I just want to squeeze it!


I finally started my Citron. Everyone does this pattern, and I have had the materials set aside for months. Its about time I finally make it! I got this much done last night while watching the Hawks game on tv (We Won!) So far its simple, self explainatory, and a dead brain knit. (meaning I don't really have to think about it, and I can just knit)
I am using KnitPicks Glass Lace in the Fiesta colorway, I like it so far, of course I have grown to not totally love the gloss yarn. Why? it feels too plasticky when its knit up... Once I wash it, then its a different story, but it just bothers my hands!


And lastly, my scrap yarn scarf. Its coming along pretty well. I won't be making it much thicker. I just have to find a thick yarn to finish off the other end so that it does not curl much! I might just take some of my bulky wool and double it up. Have not decided yet.


I think the colors go pretty well together, and thankfully I am stopping myself from becoming a hoarder, since I am using up all those scraps! (Something else the roomie tells me all the time, that I am going to end up on that hoarder show... ummmm except that I am actually doing stuff with the yarn I have! :) )

So far, that is all the progress I have made. I have to get into the recording studio to get some Cds on the shelf, and then I have a seminar at 1 pm until 4 pm. I am just excited that the weather is so freaking nice outside! I have my window open!!!!!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Bingo is over!

The stress of winning was just too strong today! I was attempting to play 15 bingo games, each round. It was not the brightest thing to do...

And yet, I did not win one game!!! *sigh*....

at least all that money went to a good cause!


Thats Steve and me, along with my friend Ashely and one of the students Danielle. We had a table full of bingo cards, and only one of us won! I will get over it, but I realllly wanted one of those baskets! (Longaberger baskets and pottery were the prizes)


I donated a bunch of scarves and hats that I have made for the door prizes. Even a crocheted bag that I made out of walmart bags. For some reason everyone thought those were amazing. My friend Ashely won it, and when they brought it over to her, another lady grabbed it to show to a bunch of older ladies.

They all wanted to know how it was made, and it made me feel pretty darn special!

This is just a simple knit scarf, that I donated. Not sure who got it, but I hope they enjoyed it right in times for Valentines Day.

I also crocheted this scarf a while back, and I thought it would be a good "guy" scarf. So I donated that too!

Next up is a scrap scarf. I usually keep all the extra balls of yarns that I have left over, so I can knit up some of these scrap scarves. People seem to like the scrappy looking scarves, so it's always great to have a couple in my store!

^ the balls of yarn that I am using.
And a close up of the scarf so far. Nothing special but its cute!

I have a seminar tomorrow, so I should be done after noon. And I am hoping to stop by the yarn store and just say hi, because its been over 2 weeks since I have been there, and I am jonesing for some yarny goodness.
But thankfully I will have some time to get stuff done, bank visits, work in the recording studio, and possibly a new purse sewn up.

Also visiting the gym again! I went to a Zumba class last week, and it felt great! I felt like the whitest person there, but it was so much fun! So I will be doing that again tomorrow night. yay!

Monday, February 07, 2011

Let's have a heart to heart

When I was younger I was terrified of elevators. I remember visiting my mother in a hospital when I was 11 years old (shes a nurse) and my dad wanted to take the elevator. I watched waaayyy too many movies where the elevators would come crashing down. The one that sticks out in my mind is the Leprechaun movies.

Oh the terror.

So we went on this elevator and I literally collasped in a panic, and freaked out crying in the corner of the elevator. The 7 other people were confused as to what was happening. They thought my dad beat me or something. Nope. Just your normal eleven year old who is totally messed up on elevators.

I thankfully have gotten over this fear. Though I refuse to go on any elevators that look unsafe.


Next up. I was so shy that I would literally freak out when ever my mother told me to talk to a stranger. I could never order my own food at a restaurant, I could never call in a pizza, I could never buy clothes by myself... you get the point. And this kept up until I was a sophomore in college.

I have gotten over this fear too. I think that by becoming a music teacher, I have gotten up the courage that I never had before. I can start up a conversation with almost anyone (I could never even dream of doing that before!) For example. This past weekend I went up to Champaign to check out the Needleworks yarn store for the second time. I sat down at the knitting table and started up a conversation with everyone that walked in. We talked about everything.

I feel that I might almost come off too strong with strangers. (or people I have only met a few times) I just get so excited to talk, especially about crafting.... that I tend to rant.

But it feels so great to be able to make new friends constantly, because I spent over half my life so shy that I couldnt even talk to new people. It killed me.

But I am so glad I am over that. Or else I would not be as happy as I am right now!


I am also afraid of heights... Which when I was 9 I made clear when my family visited the Statue of Liberty, and I cried the entire walk up...

I think I want to redo that vacation.

Hey followers! What are some of your fears, that you have or have not gotten over with?

Let me know!

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Test knit and then some

So I was browsing the test knit group on Ravelry.com, and came across a new pattern that needed to be tested.

Type 'N Swipe Mittens by betheany. It's one of those "WHY DIDN'T I THINK OF THAT FIRST?"

I started yesterday, at Needleworks in Champaign Illinois, at about 11:15. (where I met a bunch of awesome ladies, and spent five hours chatting and hanging out with them!)
I finished the second one about 20 minutes ago. I have a new love for mittens. I hate socks. But I love mittens!


They look like plain simple mittens

attempting a picture with one hand...


Surprise! I can poke my thumb and finger through!

Cause I did not want to miss that text! :)

This is definetely a pattern I will be doing again. I want to play around with sizing and possibly leave out the left hand holes, since I text primarily with my right hand.


Remember that yarn I spun last week during my snow day? This is what I knit it up into.
If you look closely you can see the fish swimming around the yarn overs.

I named this scarf "Other Fish in the Sea"
It makes me :)

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

5th Snow day this year

With the 6th Snow/ice day starting tomorrow!

It is pretty intense outside, but I always find ice to be reallllly pretty. We have had ice crystals falling from the sky for about two days now, and last night we got a light dusting of snow. The trees are so gorgeous... but then again, my roommate and I are pretty grateful that we still have power, though it has been flickering and scaring us constantly.

Those power lines look dangerous!
Internet and cable has been on and off, which is annoying, just because there is literally nothing else to do.


LOOK AT HOW PURDY THAT IS!!!!

Well, I have been able to get a few things done in the snow days that have passed. I filled out a bunch of job applications for southern Illinois. (K-12 band)

I finished up my application for the Germany trip study abroad in May after graduation.

And I spun a bunch of yarn!

Here is what it looks like wrapped around a binder before I soaked it.


And this is how it looks now, after soaking. Thick and thin. And pretty!
I was planning on selling the yarn, but I found that when I was taking it off the spindle, a bunch of the thin parts fell apart. And the knots are not noticeable, but it works really well with the beads I bought. So I am going to make a scarf with these fish beads. Just the green and blue ones. It will be a drop stitch/yarn over scarf, with the cute little fish hiding in the dropped/yarn overs. I cannnnnnot wait!




As for the shawl I am working on, it is going really well. Nothing special looking so far, so I will not post pictures until I get more into the pattern.

Tomorrow, I will probably post again, because I will have literally nothing else to do.

I am battling a head and chest cold, so I sound horrible. The nasely, gross, sniffly, sneezy sick. And my nose is rubbed raw from tissue, even though I have been using the lotion kleenex... booo

I am going to do my best to not take another nap...
yay....