Wednesday, October 27, 2021

My Crochet - Recent Projects

I haven't finished reading my latest book yet. So I'll write about something else I'm doing.

I've been crocheting a lot lately.

Friend 1 had some yarn her mother was discarding. She gave it to Friend 2 for a thrift shop she was involved with. Then Friend 1 thought I would like the yarn because I've been crocheting so much. Well, I didn't want the thrift shop to lose out, so I told Friend 2 that I would use the yarn to make things for the thrift shop to sell. 

Friend 2 delivered the THREE BOXES of yarn to me. Wow. And I thought I had a lot of left over yarn. 

I sorted the yarn and decided to use up the baby yarn first. Started with making granny squares, which turned into blankets. I also made a one-piece blanket. I used up pretty much all the baby yarn I could use. Then I switched to some reflective yarn. I've been having a blast, really. Here are pictures of the items I made in the last few months:

This is the first baby blanket I made using left over yarn. I basically just started making squares until I ran out, which proved a little troublesome when it came to assembling it. I like patterns and couldn't figure out what to do. Then another friend suggested diagonal. That seemed to work.

This second granny square was made with finer yarn (so I couldn't mix it with the first blanket). There was a lot more there and I was able to figure out a pattern first then just used the rest of the yarn as edging. I goofed a little on the edging (it wouldn't lay flat), but I loved the way the colors turned out.

There weren't enough yarn to make more granny squares to suit me so I just started crocheting a one-piece blanket using a pattern I found in a book. It's not very big, but would work good in a stroller. 

After I posted pictures of the blankets I made for the thrift store, my cousin asked how much it would cost to make a blanket for his niece. He didn't care what kind, just that it was blue! I told him I would do it at cost. I've made this blanket before and think it's cute. 

I was finished with the baby yarn and found some patterns for the reflective yarn I had (which was a bulky yarn). I had just enough in these two colors to make this hat. Unfortunately, it was too small for my head, so hopefully it'll fit a child. I've since made a larger one and will probably make another (as I have more bulky yarn to use up).

Found this pattern for ear warmers and the orange reflection yarn seemed perfect for this. You can't see the reflection, but if you hold it up to the light just right, or take the picture with a flash, it shows up. I was just happy the ear warmer fit my head so it's good for an adult. I also made one of these in neon yellow & neon green (since you use two strands of yarn--yes this will really warm your ears!).

Before I started using all this donated yarn, I had my own project - place mats for my table. I found a cool pattern and made one of each color. They turned out larger than I thought, but it's cotton and will probably shrink when I was them. I'm just afraid to wash them now, so I'll wait until they've been used at least once!

I'm making scarves and more hats for the thrift shop since they could use winter wear. It's fun to crochet, but I don't always have someone to make things for. I feel like I'm helping doing this, and it feels good. 

So... Are you a crafty person? What's you're talent? I tried knitting, but that's just too frustrating. And bulky to carry around. Crocheting is easier and if you drop a stitch, you only drop one stitch. And if I make a mistake... well, that's what makes handmade items special. They're one of a kind!


Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Reading Update and I Fixed my Blog List

Last week I asked for help regarding the blog list on my side bar since I couldn’t get it to update or add blogs. Well… turns out I was using an old gadget (Blogger’s term, not mine). You’d think they’d automatically update the one I was using. Or let me know they updated it, right? But no… And I couldn’t just copy and paste the data over, I had to enter ALL the blogs I follow onto that list. One. At. A Time. But first, I needed to clean up my list. Why enter old blogs? And I had a LOT of old blogs on that list.

What a job!

I never realized how many people I followed had quit blogging. Not just not posting, but deleting the whole kit and caboodle! But now my list is clean. Yay! Although, I notice a lot of bloggers I follow still don’t have the https before their URL. Which meant the blog posts weren’t showing (just the blog, but not the latest post). Good thing I knew a way around THAT!

Sometimes I know too much for my own good. That usually gets me in trouble. Hopefully not this time, though.

Here’s what I read since my last update:

Book 49

Dates read: October 9-18, 2021
Title: Mile High With a Vampire
Year of publication: 2021
Author: Lynsay Sands
Genre: Paranormal romance
Series: Argeneau Vampires #33
# of Pages: 341
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Jet Lassiter likes being a pilot for Argeneau Enterprises. Perks include traveling to exotic locations and meeting interesting people, even if they are the blood-sucking kind. He’s living the good life, until his plane goes down in the mountains and four of his passengers are gravely injured. They need blood to heal…and Jet is the only source.
    Quinn Peters never wanted to be immortal. Once a renowned heart surgeon, she was turned against her will and now she has to drink blood to survive. Before she can ask how her “life” can get any worse, she’s in a plane crash. One of the few survivors, Quinn is desperate to get the mortal pilot to safety before her fellow immortals succumb to their blood lust and drain Jet dry.
    But hungry vampires are the least of their worries—the crash wasn’t an accident, and someone is trying to kill Quinn. Will she and Jet find their happily ever after as life mates, or will her assassin find her first?
My thoughts: Still a fun series to read. I love escaping into this world.

The weather has gotten a little cooler here. And definitely way less muggy. I’m enjoying my walks, but taking them later in the day. Seeing temps in the 40s in the morning doesn’t make me motivated to get out there and walk! Eventually I’ll have to go back to my step aerobics, but so far the weather has cooperated this October. In fact, it’s been an AWESOME October. The trees are still green!

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Reading Update and What’s Up with Blogger

I’ve tried to add blogs to my “Blogs I’m Following” list (over on the right side bar). But every time I try to save my selection, the window won’t close, even though the SAVE button goes grey, showing that I had saved it. I can’t close the window without leaving the page, so I have to go to another website or close it down altogether instead. But when I go back to my blog, the new blog I want to follow isn’t listed. This has happened more than once and is rather frustrating.  Anyone else having this issue on Blogger?

And don’t tell me there are other ways to follow. I know there are other ways. I’d just rather not have another blog sent to my e-mail. I tend to ignore them that way, especially since I get way too many e-mails.

Here’s what I read since my last update:

Book 48

Dates read: October 1-9, 2021
Title: Billy Summers
Year of publication: 2021
Author: Stephen King
Genre: Thriller/Crime Drama
Series: N/A
# of Pages: 514
Paper or plastic: Hard back
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Billy Summers is a man in a room with a gun. He’s a killer for hire and the best in the business. But he’ll do the job only if the target is a truly bad guy. And now Billy wants out. First there is one last hit. Billy is among the best snipers in the world, a decorated Iraq war vet, a Houdini when it comes to vanishing after the job is done. So what could possibly go wrong?
    How about everything.
    This spectacularly riveting novel is part war story, part love letter to small-town America and the people who live there, and it features one of the most compelling and surprising duos in King fiction, who set out to avenge the crimes of an extraordinary evil man. Billy Summers is about love, luck, fate, and a complex hero with one last shot at redemption.
My thoughts: I didn’t know what to expect when I cracked open this book, because I don’t always read the blurbs of authors I love. I just buy their books and read them! This is a good story. And I love the reference to The Shining. That’s about the only spooky stuff in this book, too. And even that reference isn’t all that spooky.

So… Do you use Blogger? Got any tips on how to add blogs to my list? I’ve tried updating using Edge and Chrome, but got the same results. Kind of funny that this feature isn’t working for me since that’s why I started my own blog in the first place—to follow other blogs! I always check that list on the right and see who has blogged recently. That was the best feature of Blogger! I hate that it appears to be broken.

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Reading Update and Selling the Next Book

However did a reader find books to read in the old days? The days before books went digital, I suppose is what I mean. I read about how I can optimize my sell-through by putting direct links to the next book in the back of the one the reader is currently reading. And how to do it for this retailer or this retailer or this… That it should be listed right after the end of the book, on the SAME PAGE as the ending—that that space is prime real estate. Have people really gotten that lazy? Am I wrong in thinking that if a person loved the book, they’ll look for the next one ON… THEIR… OWN…? It’s what I’ve always done.

I realize the competition out there is crowded, but the reader is already reading my book. If they didn’t like it, no amount of links will get them to click for the next one.

I just don’t get it.

That’s not to say I don’t put a link in for the next book, but it’s a link to my website (so I don’t have to have a zillion—yeah, sarcasm—different versions for each retailer) and it’s on the next page with other author notes and stuff (and before and after the first chapter to the next book teaser I share). So I do give them a short cut, but I just figured they’d keep scrolling to find them. Maybe I’m figuring wrong and people really are that lazy.

Here’s what I read since my last update:

Book 47

Dates read: September 18 – October 1, 2021
Title: Heartless
Year of publication: 2021
Author: Gena Showalter
Genre: Paranormal/Fantasy Romance
Series: Immortal Enemies #1
# of Pages: 398
Paper or plastic: Mass market paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from book: Vengeance is irresistible… Kaysar the Unhinged One, fae King of Midnight, can drive anyone to madness with his song. A ruthless warrior forged in hate, he lives to force his enemies to their knees. He will stop at nothing to succeed—even abducting and seducing his foe’s beloved bride to ensure his own child one day sits on the male’s throne. Except, his prize escapes to the mortal realm before the first kiss, her heart transplanted into a human beauty with dangerous secrets…
    Chantel “Cookie” Bardot is a professional gamer girl great at trash-talking, bad at peopling. After a long-awaited surgery, she begins to morph into a powerful fae princess. Catapulted into a strange land ruled by a cruel but seductive villain, she must battle flesh-and-blood monsters and navigate royal intrigues. But the true danger is Kaysar, whose every wicked touch tempts her beyond reason. Should she run…or descend into the darkness with him?
My thoughts: I don’t know that I would have read this book if a friend didn’t rave about how bizarre it is. And it is bizarre. Kaysar and Cookie are the STRANGEST romantic couple I’ve read about. Not exactly hero material, more like two villains put together. I did struggle to get through this (not so much about the bizarre behavior, but the fantasy aspect of it—it’s really not a paranormal romance as marketed), but ultimately, I wanted to know how it ended. Will I read book 2, which won’t be released until July 2022? Will I have remembered this book by then? I really don’t know the answer to either question except, maybe, we’ll see.

So… Do you read digital books? Do you click on the links at the end? I tend to read more paper books than digital ones. And clicking on my Nook doesn’t do much good as I keep the WiFi off most of the time (it drains the battery, and to be truthful, I usually only read from it when I’m on a trip and can’t get WiFi).

Happy Reading!