About Me

Arizona, United States
I'm a work-at-home mom who enjoys the beautiful sunsets here in the high desert.

My Designs

For the free patterns for these afghan squares I designed for My Reading Afghan, click here.

My Recently Completed Projects

On The Hook

Ravelry CAL Afghan 1 in progress
Ravelry CAL Afghan 1

Ravelry CAL Afghan 2 in progress
Ravelry CAL Afghan 2

Ravelry CAL Afghan 3 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 3 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan 3

Ravelry CAL Afghan 4 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 4 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan 4

Ravelry CAL Afghan 5 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 5 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan 5

Ravelry CAL Afghan 6 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 6 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan 6

Ravelry CAL Afghan 7 in progress (squares 1-4)Ravelry CAL Afghan 7 in progress (squares 5-8)
Ravelry CAL Afghan--Flower Burst 7ARavelry CAL Afghan--Flower Burst 7B
Ravelry CAL Afghan 7

Ravelry CAL Afghan 8 in progress
Ravelry CAL Afghan 8

Ravelry CAL Afghan Blocks:
Dream Catcher
Cross My Heart
Chocolate Delight
Flower Burst

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Pineapple Square Afghan Completed

The Pineapple Square Afghan is finally finished. I started it on 02/23/2008 and completed it 05/24/2008, so it took about three months to make it. And this was working on it little by little in between other things, mostly the squares for the Ravelry CAL Afghans, squares for My Reading Afghan and while trying to design Husband's Flag Kippah. These other projects are still ongoing, but at least this Pineapple Square Afghan is finally off the hook and ready to be given to its intended recipients.

This afghan was crocheted with Red Heart Super Saver, 'Painted Desert' colorway, using a size J hook. The color of the yarn is most accurately reproduced in the top picture, which shows the detail of the border at one of the corners, and in the bottom picture showing the leftover yarn. The pattern calls for 46 ounces of worsted-weight yarn, so I bought ten 5-ounce skeins to be sure I had enough. After finishing the afghan, I had one full skein and a little bit of another left over, so apparently it took less than 45 ounces of this yarn for me to complete this afghan.

According to the pattern, the finished afghan is supposed to measure 50 inches by 73 inches. I didn't measure it when I had it spread out for the picture, but I did measure the squares as I completed them, and they measured the correct 23 inches square, so the finished size is probably pretty close to what the pattern says.

The pattern I used is in a booklet called Pineapple Afghans that I ordered from Frugal Knitting Haus. This booklet has six patterns, and there are at least two more of them I'd like to make someday--'Daisy Pineapple' and 'Rose Octagon'.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Bemidbar (In The Wilderness)

(This week's Torah portion is Bemidbar. I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog on 05/24/2007.)

TORAH: Bemidbar (Numbers) 1:1-4:20
HAFTARAH: Hoshea (Hosea) 1:10-2:23
KETUVIM NETZARIM: Romans 9:22-33

Num 1:1 And יהוה spoke to Mosheh in the Wilderness of Sinai, in the Tent of Meeting, on the first day of the second month, in the second year after they had come out of the land of Mitsrayim, saying,
Num 1:2 "Take a census of all the congregation of the children of Yisra'el, by their clans, by their fathers' houses, according to the number of names, every male, head by head,
Num 1:3 from twenty years old and above, everyone going out to the army in Yisra'el. Number them by their divisions, you and Aharon.

YHWH directed Mosheh to take a census of Yisra'el, but only of the males 20 years old and older--those who were to serve in the army, and they numbered 603,550! Wow!

Num 1:45 And all those that were registered of the children of Yisra'el, by their fathers' houses, from twenty years old and above, everyone going out to the army in Yisra'el,
Num 1:46 all those that were registered were six hundred and three thousand five hundred and fifty.

This did not include males younger than 20, nor any of the females, nor the entire tribe of Levi--males and females, so you can imagine how many more people there were on top of that 603,550. They were like a huge city there in the wilderness!

With so many people, there had to be order, so YHWH instructed them in who was to camp where. The Levites were to camp around the Dwelling Place (Tabernacle) because YHWH had taken the Levites for Himself, so they were more set-apart than the rest of Yisra'el and were the caretakers and guardians of the Dwelling Place. The Levites acted as a buffer between YHWH and the people.

Num 1:52 "And the children of Yisra'el shall pitch their tents, everyone by his own camp, everyone by his own banner, according to their divisions,
Num 1:53 but let the Lewites camp around the Dwelling Place of the Witness, so that there be no wrath on the congregation of the children of Yisra'el. And the Lewites shall guard the duty of the Dwelling Place of the Witness."
On the east, the direction in which the Dwelling Place faced, was the camping place of Mosheh and Aharon and their sons. Behind them were the tribes of Yehudah, then Yissaskar, then Zebulun, with Yehudah the leading tribe of those three.

On the south side of the Dwelling Place were the sons of Qehath of the Levites. Behind them were the tribes of Re'uben, then Shim'on, then Gad, with Re'uben being the leading tribe of the three.

On the west side of the Dwelling Place was the camping place of the sons of Gereshon of the Levites. Behind them were the tribe of Ephrayim, then Menashsheh, then Binyamin, with Ephrayim being the lead tribe.

On the north side of the Dwelling Place were the sons of Merari of the Levites. Behind them were the tribes of Dan, then Asher, then Naphtali, with Dan in the lead.

Num 2:1 And יהוה spoke to Mosheh and to Aharon, saying,
Num 2:2 "The children of Yisra'el are to camp, each one by his own banner, beside the sign of his father's house. Let them camp around the Tent of Meeting at a distance."

It was important for the people to camp in the proper order so that they were not too close to the Dwelling Place without preparation and authorization because the manifest presence of YHWH was there, and no sin or abomination can live in His presence.

When it was time to depart, the people on the west departed first--Yehudah, Yissaskar and Zebulun. They were followed by those on the south--Re'uben, Shim'on and Gad. Then came Mosheh, Aharon and the Levites carrying all of the parts of the Dwelling Place and all of its furnishings. The Levites could not carry the set-apart things until after Aharon and his sons had prepared and covered them first, and they could not even look on while Aharon and his sons did so lest they die. The Levites really did carry the burdens of the people!

The Levites remained in the midst of the people while they were traveling. The rear guard was then taken up by those who camped on the west--Ephrayim, Menashsheh and Binyamin. After them came the northern camp--Dan, Asher and Naphtali.

Num 1:54 And the children of Yisra'el did according to all that יהוה commanded Mosheh, so they did.

All of those in this huge number of people followed these intructions and protocols! It is difficult to imagine a city of that size of people of today behaving themselves in such an orderly fashion.

Num 3:10 "And appoint Aharon and his sons, and they shall guard their priesthood. And the stranger who comes near shall be put to death."

Only Aharon and his sons could serve as priests in the Dwelling Place. Anyone else was subject to death if they tried to go where only the priests were to enter. YHWH is set-apart, so only those set-apart can come near Him and that is because what is profane simply cannot exist in His presence.

Num 3:12 "Now look, I Myself have taken the Lewites from among the children of Yisra'el instead of every first-born who opens the womb among the children of Yisra'el. And the Lewites shall be Mine,
Num 3:13 because all the first-born are Mine. On the day that I struck all the first-born in the land of Mitsrayim, I set apart to Myself all the first-born in Yisra'el, both man and beast. They are Mine, I am יהוה."

The first-born among the children of Yisra'el were redeemed by the blood of the Passover lamb, so they belong to YHWH, but He chose to take the tribe of Levi for Himself in exchange.

Num 3:15 "Register the children of Lewi by their fathers' houses, by their clans. Register every male from a month old and above."

After numbering the other tribes of Yisra'el, YHWH instructs Mosheh to count every male 1 month old and older among the Levites.

Num 3:40 And יהוה said to Mosheh, "Register all the first-born males of the children of Yisra'el from a month old and above, and take the number of their names.

The first-born males of all the rest of the tribes 1 month old and older were also counted because the Levites were to be taken in exchange for them.

Num 3:41 "And you shall take the Lewites for Me – I am יהוה – instead of all the first-born among the children of Yisra'el, and the livestock of the Lewites instead of all the first-born among the livestock of the children of Yisra'el."

Num 3:44 And יהוה spoke to Mosheh, saying,
Num 3:45 "Take the Lewites instead of all the first-born among the children of Yisra'el, and the livestock of the Lewites instead of their livestock. And the Lewites shall be Mine, I am יהוה.

There was a discrepancy in the number of Levites compared to the number of the first-born of the rest of the tribes in that there were more first-borns than Levites, so this was resolved by paying a ransom for the 273 first-borns over the number of Levites. This silver went to the priesthood.

Num 3:46 "And for the ransom of the two hundred and seventy-three of the first-born of the children of Yisra'el, who are more than the number of the Lewites,
Num 3:47 you shall take five sheqels for each one, head by head – take it by the sheqel of the set-apart place, the sheqel of twenty gerahs.
Num 3:48 "And you shall give the silver, the ransom of those who are in excess among them, to Aharon and his sons."

Even though at this point in Yisra'el's history Mosheh was able to number them, it is prophesied in Hoshea that there will come a time when they will not be able to be counted.

Hos 1:10 "Yet the number of the children of Yisra'el shall be as the sand of the sea, which is not measured nor counted. And it shall be in the place where it was said to them, 'You are not My people,' they shall be called, 'You are the sons of the living El.'
Hos 1:11 "And the children of Yehudah and the children of Yisra'el shall be gathered together, and appoint for themselves one head, and shall come up out of the earth, for great is the day of Yizre'el!

This is because YHWH has so thoroughly sown the Yisra'elites among the nations of the earth that they have lost their identity.

Hos 2:23 "And I shall sow her for Myself in the earth, and I shall have compassion on her who had not obtained compassion. And I shall say to those who were not My people, 'You are My people,' while they say, 'My Elohim!' "

YHWH knows His people, and He calls them out so that they can prepare to be His bride.

Hos 2:19 "And I shall take you as a bride unto Me forever, and take you as a bride unto Me in righteousness, and in right-ruling, and kindness and compassion.
Hos 2:20 "And I shall take you as a bride unto Me in trustworthiness, and you shall know יהוה.

Sha'ul knew and understood the prophecies about the 'lost' tribes of Yisra'el, so he knew who the 'gentiles' were who were turning to YHWH and following Yeshua Messiah.

Rom 9:25 As He says in Hoshea too, "I shall call them My people, who were not My people, and her beloved, who was not beloved."
Rom 9:26 "And it shall be in the place where it was said to them, 'You are not My people,' there they shall be called sons of the living Elohim."
Rom 9:27 And Yeshayahu cries out on behalf of Yisra'el, "Though the number of the children of Yisra'el be as the sand of the sea, the remnant shall be saved.

Ya'acob (James) also knew to whom he was writing.

Jam 1:1 Ya'aqob, a servant of Elohim and of the Master Yeshua Messiah, to the twelve tribes who are in the dispersion: Greetings.

And so did Kepha (Peter).

1Pe 1:1 Kepha, an emissary of Yeshua Messiah, to the chosen, strangers of the dispersion in Pontos, Galatia, Kappadokia, Asia, and Bithunia,
1Pe 1:2 chosen according to the foreknowledge of Elohim the Father, set apart by the Spirit unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Yeshua Messiah: Favour and peace be increased to you.

The Greek word translated as "dispersion" means "to sow throughout", and that is exactly what YHWH said He would do:

Hos 2:23a "And I shall sow [Yisra'el] for Myself in the earth,

And if He has sown, He will also reap. This harvest is happening as more and more people are answering His call and coming out of the idolatry of false religious systems and turning back to the true worship of YHWH as reestablished by Yeshua Messiah and His apostles.

Miss Potter

I have always loved the little books by Beatrix Potter, so this movie was a nice way of getting to know more about her and how she came to write and illustrate her books, though apparently there were several historical inaccuracies. I didn't quite buy Renee Zellweger's British accent, but overall the story was enjoyable, and the pastoral scenes were beautiful.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Knudson Square All The Way Completed

Here are the 'before' and 'after' pictures of the wrong side of the Rita Garrity Knudson square. In the above picture, all the yarn ends from the embellishments were still hanging out all over the place.

And this is the 'after' picture, where all the yarn ends have been worked in one way or another. It doesn't look a whole lot different, but at least the ends have all been dealt with, and I can now call this square officially completed.

All the work I did on the wrong side didn't change the look of the right side, so I didn't take another picture of it. I think this picture still suffices as a representation of the completed square.

This Great North American Afghan project is going to be set aside temporarily while I work on a couple of other projects that need to be completed soon.

The Tudors

Okay, apparently Natalie Dormer's face always has this smirk on it since here she is not even in costume and not even on the set, and there's the smirk!

Except for the strange, apparently permanent smirk of Ms. Dormer, I love this show. There's just something about this story that never gets old. I remember first hearing about Henry VIII and all his wives when I was a child and always found the whole thing fascinating. I think it was in the 1970s when there was a PBS miniseries that covered all the wives, and I loved that show, too. I also enjoyed the movie, Anne of the Thousand Days, starring Richard Burton and Genevieve Bujold. I've lost track of how many times I watched it.

I think the reason the story is so intriguing is because it's so unbelievable, but yet it is true. Henry turned his whole kingdom upside down and started his own church in order to get his way because he so wanted Anne Boleyn, and then a short time later he is so over her that he has her executed! He wasn't quite that evil to Catherine, so I wonder why, since he now had his own church, he couldn't have just gotten a divorce from Anne as he did with Catherine in order to marry Jane. His motivations and actions are so difficult to understand.

In The Tudors, they are playing it like Henry believed that Anne was unfaithful, but in the other versions of the story, he was aware that it was a setup and either orchestrated it or went along with it because he wanted to be rid of her. I'll always wonder how it truly was in real life.

I can't remember the stories of all the other wives. I remember what happens to Jane Seymour, and I'm pretty sure at least one more wife gets executed, but most of the details are fuzzy now, so I hope Showtime keeps this series on the air long enough to cover not only all of Henry's reign, but Edward's, Mary's and Elizabeth's, too.

I love all the historical costumes on this show, as I do with most historical TV shows and movies. And the actors are good. It fills the hole left by Rome, but of course I wish I still had Rome, too.

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

The Handmaid's Tale was written by Margaret Atwood in 1985, and at least a couple of the descriptions in this novel about ideals taken to extremes are now chillingly part of everyday life in the USA. The story is an interesting look at how people survive (or not) under totalitarianism. The society the author has constructed compels you and draws you in, albeit reluctantly. To me, a society like this seems more probable now than I would have thought it to be had I read the book back in 1985.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

What is Love?

(I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog 03/08/2007.)

Reading: Shir HaShirim (Song of Songs) 7 & 8

Son 8:6 Set me as a seal upon your heart, As a seal upon your arm; For love is as strong as death, Jealousy as cruel as the grave; Its flames are flames of fire, a flame of Yah!
Son 8:7 Many waters are unable to extinguish love, And floods do not wash it away. If one would give all the wealth of his house for love, It would be utterly scorned.

Love is a difficult thing to understand. We all want it, and all too often we take it for granted. The world defines love in ways that may or may not be in harmony with what YHWH teaches us in His Word.

And what about the sad line, "I love you, but I'm not 'in love' with you"? What is 'in love' other than infatuation, and could infatuation be true love? From what I've observed, infatuation doesn't last. Our culture builds a lot on this idea of infatuation as love. It is a gigantic industry with a wide scope from entertainment and fashion to literature and all points in between. But this thing that is called 'love' in reality is a very selfish conditional kind of thing.

When all my dreams of love were shattered, I went back to YHWH and asked Him what love is, and He showed me:

1Co 13:4 Love is patient, is kind, love does not envy, love does not boast, is not puffed up,
1Co 13:5 does not behave indecently, does not seek its own, is not provoked, reckons not the evil,
1Co 13:6 does not rejoice over the unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth,
1Co 13:7 it covers all, believes all, expects all, endures all.
1Co 13:8a Love never fails.

Most believers are familiar with this passage that teaches us what love is. Today I noted the similarity between this passage and the passage in Shir HaShirim above:

  • Many waters are unable to extinguish love
  • Love never fails

But so many of us have seen 'love' extinguished; we've witnessed the failure of 'love'. So, what is the truth--What YHWH says or what we have witnessed? If we believe that YHWH speaks Truth, then the only conclusion is that what we've seen extinguished or failed was not love.

The King James version translates the word 'love' in 1 Corinthians 13 as 'charity', and I believe that this gives us our biggest clue to what love truly is--

It is something we give to another with no expectation of anything in return.

Hollow Man 2

This was pretty good. On the negative side, there was a scene with a young couple that was obviously included for only one reason since it had absolutely nothing to do with the story as far as I could tell. It was hard to recognize Christian Slater as the title character. It must have been because he was doing such a good job with his portrayal.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Knudson Square Almost Finished

I finished all the embellishments on this Knudson square. I'm not too thrilled with the pink color in this, but it is the pink color my daughter chose for it, and since this is to be her afghan, as long as she likes it, I suppose it will be okay.

Anyway, in this picture above, it looks like a nice completed afghan square, doesn't it? But au contraire! I decided to take a picture that tells the 'rest of the story' here below.

Because of all the embellishing, there are many, many, seemingly endless ends on the back of this square, so that it is why it is only 'almost' finished. I am still dealing with all those yarn ends. I'll try to remember to take another picture when they've all been dealt with, and hopefully it will look nicer than this.

Mistress Of The Art Of Death by Ariana Franklin

I had to do some disbelief suspension in order to accommodate the title character's behavior into Henry II's England, but other than that, the characters and overall story were interesting. I especially liked one character's narrative of his Crusade experience. A good whodunit.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Our Hope

(I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog 03/06/2007.)

Reading: YirmeYahu (Jeremiah) 46-48

This section is mainly devoted to descriptions of what YHWH is going to do to the nations among whom He has scattered His people in punishment for their idolatry. Those nations will also be held accountable for their idolatry.

But the Israelites are given reassurance that all is not lost and that a faithful remnant will be preserved through all the calamity once the punishment is complete.

Jer 46:27 "But as for you, do not fear, O My servant Ya'aqob, and do not be discouraged, O Yisra'el! For look, I am saving you from afar, and your descendants from the land of their captivity. And Ya'aqob shall return, and shall have rest and be at ease, with no one disturbing.
Jer 46:28 "Do not fear, O Ya'aqob My servant," declares יהוה, "for I am with you. Though I make a complete end of all the gentiles to which I have driven you, yet I do not make a complete end of you. But I shall reprove you in right-ruling, and by no means leave you unpunished."

Even Moab (gentiles) is offered hope:

Jer 48:47 "But I shall turn back the captivity of Mo'ab in the latter days," declares יהוה. Thus far is the judgment of Mo'ab.

YHWH, through Yeshua Messiah, is the hope of Israel and the nations.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

TV Roundup

These are all comments that I had previously placed in the sidebar on my main page, but it occurred to me that it would be better and more fun to start putting my TV commentary in posts so that readers could add their comments, too.

Also, I figured it would help reduce clutter on my main page to move the commentary into posts. I'm planning to do the same with my book and movie reviews as well for the same reasons. Thought I'd start with the TV commentary, so here are all my recent/current comments.

American Idol: Didn't expect it to happen, but so glad David Cook won!

Lost: I'm still baffled as to how Kate manages to get away with passing Aaron off as hers.

Dancing With The Stars: Glad to see Kristi win!

The Tudors: I wonder if the beheading will be in the next episode.

Hell's Kitchen: It's difficult to picture ANY of these people being able to fulfill the role of executive chef for Gordon's restaurant!

The Farmer Wants A Wife: The bad manners of those supposedly virgin girls (Brooke and Lisa) are more offensive than their hypocrisy. How rude to show up late at night uninvited.

Top Chef: That Australian dude tasting and then serving people with the same spoon--ewww, how icky!

The Bachelorette: Seems like she is liking Graham the best. Sad that she sent home that sweet guy who gave her the pearl--she could have kept him around for another week or two.

The Mole: Sure hope the return is as good as it was pre-Celebrity Mole.

So You Think You Can Dance: The first episode was disappointing. Why on earth do they have to show the same ol' people who can't dance whom we've already seen audition and humiliate themselves in the previous seasons? Aren't there any new people with delusions of dance grandeur that could be featured instead?

The Moment Of Truth: I still can't believe how people will go on this show to air all their dirty laundry and humiliate their spouse and family in public like that.

Last Comic Standing: God's Pottery from New York and the guy from Tempe with short-cropped red hair and black thick-framed glasses (can't remember his name) caused me to laugh the most.

Embellishment Progress

I've been working on the duplicate stitch embroidery for the Rita Garrity Knudson block for the Great North American Afghan. So far, so good. I'm currently stitching the fourth of five colors for this 'rambling rose' section. I think I already said this in a previous post, but I LOVE this design. It just keeps getting prettier and prettier as I go.

I think it's going to be quite a challenge, though, to take care of so many ends on the back once all the embellishment is finished. Hopefully all the work and attention to detail will be worth it when I'm finally able to see the square in its completed state.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Silver Medalist!

My son was selected to represent his school in a district-wide Mental Math competition, and he came in second place of all the second graders in the whole school district!

He was awarded a really nice medal, rather heavy and substantial. We are all really excited and very proud of him! I told him I'd be counting on him to do any math figuring I need done from now on.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Bechukotai (In My Statutes)

(This week's Torah portion is Bechukotai. I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog on 05/15/2007.)

TORAH: Vayikra (Leviticus) 26:3-27:34
HAFTARAH: YirmeYahu (Jeremiah) 16:19-17:14
KETUVIM NETZARIM: MattithYahu (Matthew) 21:33-22:14; 2 Corinthians 6:14-18

Lev 26:3 'If you walk in My laws and guard My commands, and shall do them,
Lev 26:4 then I shall give you rain in its season, and the land shall yield its crops, and the trees of the field yield their fruit.

This portion starts out with a list of blessings that YHWH will bestow upon those who walk in His laws and guard His commands by doing them.

Then YHWH describes what will happen to those who do not obey Him, do not do all of His commands, reject His laws, and break His covenant:

Lev 26:14 'But if you do not obey Me, and do not do all these commands,
Lev 26:15 and if you reject My laws, or if your being loathes My right-rulings, so that you do not do all My commands, but break My covenant,
Lev 26:16 I also do this to you: And I shall appoint sudden alarm over you, wasting disease and inflammation, destroying the eyes, and consuming the life. And you shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it.

This is a progressive list, meaning that if the first round of chastisement doesn't result in turning back to Him, then there will be more rounds of chastisement:

Lev 26:18 'And after all this, if you do not obey Me, then I shall punish you seven times more for your sins.

Lev 26:21 'And if you walk contrary to Me, and refuse to obey Me, I shall bring on you seven times more plagues, according to your sins,

Lev 26:23 'And if you are not instructed by Me by these, but walk contrary to Me,
Lev 26:24 then I also shall walk contrary to you, and I Myself shall smite you seven times for your sins.

Lev 26:27 'And if in spite of this, you do not obey Me, but walk contrary to Me,
Lev 26:28 then I shall walk contrary to you in wrath. And I Myself shall punish you seven times for your sins.

Some may have seen this pattern in their own lives and realize that YHWH is trying to get their attention--I know I sure did!

The way to look at these chastisements is to realize and to appreciate to what lengths YHWH will go to bring us back to Him and how long He will keep trying to get our attention. Only a loving merciful Elohim would do whatever it takes to bring us back to Him, no matter how painful it is for us or for Him.

Lev 26:40 'But if they confess their crookedness and the crookedness of their fathers, with their trespass in which they trespassed against Me, and that they also have walked contrary to Me,
Lev 26:41 and that I also have walked contrary to them and have brought them into the land of their enemies – if their uncircumcised heart is then humbled, and they accept the punishment of their crookedness,
Lev 26:42 then I shall remember My covenant with Ya'aqob, and also My covenant with Yitshaq, and also remember My covenant with Abraham, and remember the land.

As soon as we recognize what is happening and humble ourselves and accept why it is happening and then turn back to YHWH and confess our sins, He will remember us.

Lev 26:44 'And yet for all this, when they are in the land of their enemies, I shall not reject them, nor shall I loathe them so as to destroy them and break My covenant with them. For I am יהוה their Elohim.
Lev 26:45 'Then I shall remember for their sake the covenant of the ancestors whom I brought out of the land of Mitsrayim before the eyes of the nations to be their Elohim. I am יהוה.' "
Lev 26:46 These are the laws and the right-rulings and the Torot which יהוה made between Himself and the children of Yisra'el on Mount Sinai by the hand of Mosheh.

He will never leave us nor forsake us, but will always embrace us when we turn back to Him:

Luk 15:18 'Having risen, I shall go to my father and say to him, "Father, I have sinned against the heaven, and before you,
Luk 15:19 and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants." '
Luk 15:20 "And having risen, he went to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was moved with compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him.
Luk 15:21 "And the son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against the heaven, and before you, and I am no longer worthy to be called your son.'
Luk 15:22 "But the father said to his servants, 'Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet.
Luk 15:23 'And bring the fattened calf here and slaughter it, and let us eat and rejoice,
Luk 15:24 because this son of mine was dead and is alive again, and he was lost and is found.' And they began to rejoice. '

YHWH fulfilled the chastisements upon His people, both the House of Israel and the House of Judah, and they were scattered amongst the gentiles. Especially the House of Israel was so assimilated into the gentiles that they lost their identity, but faithful to His promises, YHWH is calling them back:

Jer 16:19 O יהוה, my strength and my stronghold and my refuge, in the day of distress the gentiles shall come to You from the ends of the earth and say, "Our fathers have inherited only falsehood, futility, and there is no value in them."
Jer 16:20 Would a man make mighty ones for himself, which are not mighty ones?
Jer 16:21 "Therefore see, I am causing them to know, this time I cause them to know My hand and My might. And they shall know that My Name is יהוה!"

YHWH is getting the attention of 'gentiles' from the ends of the earth. They are hearing His voice and realizing that they have inherited lies and have been following false gods. As His people turn to Him, YHWH is being faithful to remind them who He is, including knowing that His Name is YHWH.

Jer 17:9 "The heart is crooked above all, and desperately sick – who shall know it?
Jer 17:10 "I, יהוה, search the heart, I try the kidneys, and give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.

We cannot trust ourselves to know our own hearts, but need to trust YHWH to show us the true state of our hearts by observing what we do in response to His voice.

Jer 17:13 O יהוה, the expectation of Yisra'el, all who forsake You are put to shame. "Those who depart from Me shall be written in the earth, because they have forsaken יהוה, the fountain of living waters."
Jer 17:14 Heal me, O יהוה, so that I am healed. Save me, so that I am saved, for You are my praise.

YHWH does not forsake us. We are the ones who forsake Him. We want to be written in His book, not in the earth! Let's make Him our praise so that He will heal us.

Mat 21:44 "And he who falls on this stone shall be broken, but on whomever it falls, he shall be pulverised."

It is far better to fall on Yeshua Messiah and be broken than to wait for Him to fall on us!

Mat 22:12 and he said to him, 'Friend, how did you come in here not having a wedding garment?' And he was speechless.
Mat 22:13 "Then the sovereign said to the servants, 'Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and throw him out into the outer darkness – there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'
Mat 22:14 "For many are called, but few are chosen."

Many are called, but He will choose for His bride those who are totally and completely devoted to Him, those who lay down their lives for Him.

2Co 6:17 Therefore, "Come out from among them and be separate, says יהוה, and do not touch what is unclean, and I shall receive you.
2Co 6:18 "And I shall be a Father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to Me, says יהוה the Almighty."

We cannot stay in the pigpen and expect to become clean. We have to come out and run home to Abba in order for Him to receive us.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Repentance and Forgiveness

(I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog on 03/05/2007.)

Reading: MattithYahu (Matthew) 17-20

In chapter 18 Yeshua teaches what we are to do if our brother sins against us. This procedure involves going to our brother and reproving him in private first, but if he won't hear us, then to take 2 or 3 witnesses so that "every word might be established", then if he still refuses to hear, we are to say it to the assembly, and if he refuses even to hear the assembly, then he is to be as a gentile and a tax collector.

This means the erring brother has at least 3 chances to hear reproof (repent), but if he still refuses, he has to be put out of the assembly. The Corinthian assembly failed to do that with an unrepentant brother, and Shaul rebuked them for it:

1Co 5:5 deliver such a one to Satan for destruction of the flesh, in order that his spirit be saved in the day of the Master Yeshua.
1Co 5:6 Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the entire lump?

It is the loving thing to do and actually for the unrepentant brother's good as well as the entire assembly's good for us to follow the instructions we have been given from the mouth of Yeshua Messiah.In recent years I have seen a teaching that we are to forgive unconditionally and that this is somehow the loving and righteous thing to do, and that we are doing wrong if we fail to forgive an unrepentant person. However, this is not what the Scriptures teach:

Luk 17:3 "Take heed to yourselves. If your brother sins against you, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him.
Luk 17:4 "And if he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times in a day comes back to you, saying, 'I repent,' you shall forgive him."

No matter how many times a brother sins against us, IF he repents, we are to forgive him. We are to forgive our fellow servants the same way the Master forgives us. We are forgiven when we repent. YHWH does not forgive the unrepentant ever:

Rom 2:5 But according to your hardness and your unrepentant heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of Elohim,
Rom 2:6 who "shall render to each one according to his works"

There's a country song that talks about forgiveness with these lyrics:

God does, but I don't
God will, but I won't
And that's the difference
Between God and me

--God Will by Patty Loveless

Obviously the sentiment in this song is wrong, but so is the opposite, and if we follow the popular forgiveness teaching, we are saying to YHWH:

You don't, but I do
You won't, but I will

If we do this, we are telling YHWH that He is wrong and we are right--essentially saying that we are more loving than He is because we forgive everybody no matter what. The bottom line is that it is arrogance, and it actually deceives the unrepentant into believing that they do not have to repent, thus robbing them of the opportunity for forgiveness by the one they have really sinned against--YHWH Himself.We need to trust that our Creator knows what love is and then love each other as He instructs us to. How could we possibly improve on the love of Yeshua Messiah?

Rev 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Rita Garrity Knudson Square Unembellished

Finished knitting the square, and it measures an acceptable 12-1/4 inches each way, so I'm happy with that. Still need to add the embellishments, though.

Three out of the four leaves are also knitted. In this pic they look kind of like multiracial sperm, don't they? In the center of the leaves will be a rose made of bullion stitches, and in the remaining unadorned section will be a flowering vine embroidered in duplicate stitch. This is a really pretty design. Of course, I tend to like all things flowery.
Once the Rita Garrity Knudson square was off the needles and ended up measuring within acceptable limits, comparison was made once again between it and the Susan Levin square, and it's pretty clear I'm going to have to knit the Susan Levin square a THIRD time! Hopefully going up one needle size will get it into the same range as its mate.

I am not, however, going to knit it again just yet. Once I completely finish the Knudson square, I'd like to move on and do a square or two for the Great American Aran Afghan and then a square or two for the Great American Afghan, thereby adding them to the other projects in my current rotation. When I next return to the Great North American Afghan, I'll face re-knitting the Susan Levin square hopefully for the final time.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

YHWH vs. The Queen of Heaven

(I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog on 03/02/2007.)

Reading: YirmeYahu (Jeremiah) 43-45

After asking YirmeYahu to petition YHWH on their behalf, the remnant of Yehudah, upon not liking the answer they received (stay in Yehudah and live), decide to call YirmeYahu a liar and defiantly refuse to listen and obey and decide instead to trust in Pharoah and Egypt (man and the world) rather than trusting in the word of YHWH, so they will be given over to death.

Sadly, it appears that the women were instrumental in the idolatry of Yehudah, especially in worshipping the "queen of heaven", and they make it clear that their husbands were right there with them:

Jer 44:19 "And when we burned incense to the sovereigness of the heavens and poured out drink offerings to her, did we make cakes for her, to idolize her, and pour out drink offerings to her, without our husbands?"

Women have a tremendous influence over their husbands when it comes to spiritual matters, whether for good or ill, and we need to be mindful of that.

1Pe 3:1 In the same way, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that if any are disobedient to the Word, they, without a word, might be won by the behaviour of their wives,
1Pe 3:2 having seen your blameless behaviour in fear.

Husbands also have a responsibility to keep their wives from going astray spiritually:

Eph 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, as Messiah also did love the assembly and gave Himself for it,
Eph 5:26 in order to set it apart and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word.

May we trust in YHWH and His instructions rather than in what the world says.

Monday, May 19, 2008

The Continuing Saga of The GNAA

I'm starting to get even more frustrated with this Great North American Afghan. I finished doing this first square designed by Susan Levin for the second time, and after being sure to swatch for gauge more carefully this time, it turned out too small!

My first time knitting this square, it turned out too big, so this second time around, not only did I swatch on three needle sizes to be sure I used the correct-sized needle this time, I also measured it while on the needles until the halfway point, and at that time it measured a perfect 6 inches vertically and 12 inches horizontally. But since it came off the needles, I haven't been able to get it to measure 12 inches square.

I understand that the cables are drawing in each side, but even when I pull on it to try to straighten it up, I still can't get it to 12 inches horizontally without sacrificing the vertical measurement and making the center panel bubble up. This is acrylic yarn, so not really blockable.

I'm especially concerned about this square because in the layout used for the afghan in the book (which I wanted to follow), it is a corner square, so it will only be sewn to two adjacent squares rather than four. If it was destined to be an inside square (sewn on four sides) or even an edge square (sewn on three sides), I wouldn't be so concerned as it would probably straighten out okay after being joined to at least three surrounding squares.

Even though I was disappointed with my second knitting of the Susan Levin square, I thought it would be best to go ahead and swatch and then complete the second square (designed by Rita Garrity Knudson) before making a final decision on what to do about the Susan Levin square. This way I'd have another square to compare to, and especially if the Rita Garrity Knudson square turned out to be 12 inches square using the needles the gauge swatching indictated, that might help me figure out how to get the Susan Levin square to finalize at 12 inches square as well.

By the way, my swatching for gauge on stockinette stitch for this square resulted in my using size 5 needles to knit this square, the same size needles I ended up using to knit the Susan Levin square the second time after swatching for gauge using the mosaic stitch used in the center panel of the pattern.

The Rita Garrity Knudson square is knit in the round from the outside in, and I'm close to finishing the knitting portion of the square. Once that's done and it's off the needles, I'll be able to discover the final measurement outcome. I'm not even bothering to measure it while it's on the needles since that proved to be irrelevant with the Susan Levin square.

Adding to my frustration is using these bamboo double-pointed needles I got off eBay a while back. The yarn sticks to the needles, and the stitches do not slide across the needles as I'm used to with my other knitting needles. I have to push and shove each stitch along, which makes it really slow-going. I had just switched to these DPNs a couple rounds before taking the above picture. Prior to that I was using my Denise needles, but the circumference finally got too small to knit comfortably with those anymore. Anyway, I can't help but wonder how going from knitting so smoothly on the Denise needles to the stuttering, stop-and-go, push-and-shove kind of knitting I'm having to do now on the bamboos will affect the final measurement.

I couldn't resist comparing the two squares since the outside perimeter of the Rita Garrity Knudson square is there even though the inside is not yet knitted, so I put the Susan Levin square on top and took this picture. It looks like the Knudson square is going to be more 'square' and probably measure larger. I'm getting the feeling that I'm going to end up knitting the Levin square a third time!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

The Perfect Husband

(I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog on 03/02/2007.)

Reading: Shir HaShirim (Song of Songs) 3-6

Son 4:9 You have put heart into me, My sister, my bride; You have put heart into me With one glance of your eyes, With one bead of your necklace.

Who needs Hollywood when we have Song of Songs? What woman doesn't long to hear such words from the man of her dreams? Just reading them makes our hearts beat faster.

When we dig a little deeper into the beautiful description of the bride's Beloved in 5:10-16 and see it as a representation of our King, who wants US to be His bride, it takes our breath away! Who could possibly be more handsome, well-built, perfect in every way? How could we not fall in love with Him? And amazingly, beyond all imagining, He wants to be our Husband!!

Dreams really do come true.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

My Birthday Goodies!

It was my birthday a few weeks ago, and I got some really awesome gifts. Some were in the form of cash and gift certificates, so I waited until the orders came in, and then I finally got around to taking pictures of everything. Above is my super-duper true daylight crafting lamp. It has two flexible arms--one with a clamp to hold a pattern (in this case, the Great North American Afghan book) and one with a magnifying glass on the end. When not in use I keep the magnifying glass protected and covered with the little white fabric bag that came with it. This lamp and magnifying glass have been life-savers for me to be able to work on Husband's Flag Kippah.This is my new MP3 player and case. It's been great fun to finally be able to listen to knitting podcasts on the go. Mostly I've been listening in the car during the commute to and from town on my weekly shopping trips. My 14-year-old daughter, who usually accompanies me, is not so thrilled with the podcast listening as I am.
I've also been able to enjoy some new music. I've wanted Ted Pearce's 'Hallelu Et Adonai' since it first came out, and now I finally have it!
My other new CD is Simon and Garfunkel 'Live 1969' with all my faves, like 'Bridge Over Troubled Water' and 'The Boxer'.
I've been intrigued with the Stained Glass Afghan on the cover of this book for some time now, so I'm very happy to finally have it in hand. There are some other great afghans in it, too, but that cover afghan is for sure something I have to make when I get all the current afghans in progress finished.
I joined a CAL group on Ravelry that is doing all of the squares in this '200 Blocks' book by Jan Eaton. I haven't yet crocheted any of the squares, but I have the yarn I want to use ready to go. I'm planning to make afghans for my granddaughters with these squares. Another group on Ravelry that I'm a member of is the Read~Knit~Cook group. I'm way behind on the reading selections, but at least now I have them. These are the first three in a series of knitting-themed cozy mysteries by Maggie Sefton.

This knitting-themed romance is also a selection for the Read~Knit~Cook group. And I'm looking forward to indulging myself with the gardenia-scented toiletries and candle I received.
These are the first couple of books in another knitting-themed cozy mystery series for the Read~Knit~Cook group. These are by Mary Kruger.
As far as I know these first two books in a knitting-themed series by Debbie Macomber are not yet a selection for any of the book groups I belong to, but I thought I'd try them out anyway. I've read a couple of her earlier books and liked her as an author, so hopefully I'll enjoy these, too.

It'll be some time before I can read any of these new books since I'm still reading Here Be Dragons, a selection for the Ravelry Book Club group that is 700 pages long. I haven't even completed 200 pages yet!I also got this order of goodies from Frugal Knitting Haus: a pattern book for baby and toddler dresses, size L, M, N and P crochet hooks of the Crystallites type, two cable needles and a row counter.

Many, many thank-yous to all my loved ones who blessed me with this bounty of things that bring me such joy!

Friday, May 16, 2008

Behar (On The Mount)

(This week's Torah portion is Behar. I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog on 05/15/2007.)

TORAH: Vayikra (Leviticus) 25:1-26:2
HAFTARAH: YirmeYahu (Jeremiah) 32:6-27

Lev 25:2 "Speak to the children of Yisra'el, and say to them, 'When you come into the land which I give you, then the land shall observe a Sabbath to יהוה.

The Sabbath is an oft-repeated pattern throughout the Scriptures, and here YHWH is telling us that the land is also to observe a Sabbath. Every seventh year the land is to rest because it is a Sabbath to YHWH. There is to be no sowing, pruning, reaping, harvesting, etc., so it is also a year of rest for the farmers and their workers.

Lev 25:6 'And the Sabbath of the land shall be to you for food, for you and your servant, and for your female servant and your hired servant, and for the stranger who sojourns with you,
Lev 25:7 and for your livestock and the beasts that are in your land. All its crops are for food.

Whatever the land produces during this year of rest without being cultivated may be taken for food, like from hand to mouth, but is not to be harvested as a crop as in the other years.

This seventh year is special in at least a couple of other ways:

Deu 15:12 "When your brother is sold to you, a Hebrew man or a Hebrew woman, and shall serve you six years, then let him go free from you in the seventh year.

Deu 31:10 And Mosheh commanded them, saying, "At the end of seven years, at the appointed time, the year of release, at the Festival of Booths,
Deu 31:11 when all Yisra'el comes to appear before יהוה your Elohim in the place which He chooses, read this Torah before all Yisra'el in their hearing.
Deu 31:12 "Assemble the people, the men and the women and the little ones, and your sojourner who is within your gates, so that they hear, and so that they learn to fear יהוה your Elohim and guard to do all the Words of this Torah.
Deu 31:13 "And their children, who have not known it, should hear and learn to fear יהוה your Elohim as long as you live in the land you are passing over the Yarden to possess."

Hebrew indentured servants were to be released in the seventh year, and in the seventh year when all the people came to Yerushalayim for Sukkot (Festival of Booths), the Torah was to be read to them. This may have been the only time for many to hear the Word of YHWH, especially those in outlying areas.

Lev 25:8 'And you shall count seven Sabbaths of years for yourself, seven times seven years. And the time of the seven Sabbaths of years shall be to you forty-nine years.
Lev 25:9 'You shall then sound a ram's horn to pass through on the tenth day of the seventh month, on the Day of Atonement cause a ram's horn to pass through all your land.
Lev 25:10 'And you shall set the fiftieth year apart, and proclaim release throughout all the land to all its inhabitants, it is a Jubilee for you. And each of you shall return to his possession, and each of you return to his clan.

This instruction to count "seven Sabbaths of years for yourself" is similar to the instruction to "count for yourselves seven completed Sabbaths" from Yom HaBikkurim (Day of Firstfruits) to Shavuot (Festival of Weeks):

Lev 23:15 'And from the morrow after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering, you shall count for yourselves: seven completed Sabbaths.
Lev 23:16 'Until the morrow after the seventh Sabbath you count fifty days, then you shall bring a new grain offering to יהוה.

Just as the 50th day of the counting from Yom HaBikkurim is a set-apart day--Shavuot, the 50th year is a set-apart year--HaShanah Yovel (Year of Jubilee).

Lev 25:11 'The fiftieth year is a Jubilee to you. Do not sow, nor reap what grows of its own, nor gather from its unpruned vine.
Lev 25:12 'It is a Jubilee, it is set-apart to you. Eat from the field its crops.
Lev 25:13 'In the Year of this Jubilee let each one of you return to his possession.

The 50th year is also a time when there is to be no sowing or reaping, as in the 7th year. It also is a time when property is returned to the original possessor. YHWH is the true owner of the Land, but it was allotted amongst all of the families of the 12 tribes of Israel as their inheritance from YHWH for their use.

Lev 25:23 'And the land is not to be sold beyond reclaim, for the land is Mine, for you are sojourners and settlers with Me.
Lev 25:24 'And provide for a redemption for the land, in all the land of your possession.

YHWH promises to provide during these set-apart years:

Lev 25:18 'And you shall do My laws and guard My right-rulings, and shall do them. And you shall dwell in the land in safety,
Lev 25:19 'and the land shall yield its fruit, and you shall eat to satisfaction, and shall dwell there in safety.
Lev 25:20 'And since you might say, "What do we eat in the seventh year, since we do not sow nor gather in our crops?"
Lev 25:21 'Therefore I have commanded My blessing on you in the sixth year, and it shall bring forth the crop for three years.
Lev 25:22 'And you shall sow in the eighth year, and eat of the old crop until the ninth year. Eat of the old until its crop comes in.

As long as we are seeking Him first and obeying Him, He is faithful to keep His promise to provide what we need:

Mat 6:31 "Do not worry then, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?'
Mat 6:32 "For all these the gentiles seek for. And your heavenly Father knows that you need all these.
Mat 6:33 "But seek first the reign of Elohim, and His righteousness, and all these matters shall be added to you.

Another provision in the economy of YHWH is to care for the poor:

Lev 25:35 'And when your brother becomes poor, and his hand has failed with you, then you shall sustain him, and he shall live with you, like a stranger or a sojourner.
Lev 25:36 'Take no interest from him, or profit, but you shall fear your Elohim, and your brother shall live with you.
Lev 25:37 'Do not lend him your silver on interest, and do not lend him your food for profit.

At the end of this portion, YHWH reiterates His instructions regarding idols, images and pillars, His Sabbaths and His set-apart place:

Lev 26:1 'Do not make idols for yourselves, and do not set up a carved image or a pillar for yourselves, and do not place a stone image in your land, to bow down to it. For I am יהוה your Elohim.
Lev 26:2 'Guard My Sabbaths and reverence My set-apart place. I am יהוה.

In light of these words from the mouth of YHWH, why do so many churches have images in their buildings? Why do they erect pillars (steeples)? Why do they ignore the Sabbaths of YHWH? Why do they ignore His Name that He makes known to us nearly 7000 times in His Word?

When HaSatan tried Yeshua Messiah, Yeshua took up the sword of the Spirit and struck 3 blows with it:

Eph 6:17 Take also the helmet of deliverance, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of Elohim,

Mat 4:4 But He answering, said, "It has been written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of יהוה.' "

Mat 4:7 Yeshua said to him, "It has also been written, 'You shall not try יהוה your Elohim.' "

Mat 4:10 Then Yeshua said to him, "Go, Satan! For it has been written, 'You shall worship יהוה your Elohim, and Him alone you shall serve.' "

Yeshua Messiah gave us His example in these 3 blows He leveled against the enemy for us to follow:

  1. Live by every word that comes from the mouth of YHWH.
  2. Do not try YHWH.
  3. Worship and serve only YHWH.

So, if He says to guard His Sabbaths, then isn't that exactly what we should do? That is what Yeshua Messiah did.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Recent Progress

I figured it was time for a new picture of the Hooded Sweater. This is my grab-and-go take-along project since it fits in a little bag and is nice-and-easy mindless stockinette stitch. I've managed to get some rows done while waiting in doctor offices. This is the back, the first piece, and it's about 7 inches in length so far. It's an adult medium, so still quite a way to go just to finish the back, but at least there's no rush on it, and my daughter will probably be happy to get it whenever it's finally done.
She wanted this hoodie to match the hoodie I made for her little dog. Hopefully one of these days I'll be able to get a picture of the two of them wearing their matching hoodies.
This is a better shot of the Hound Hoodie by itself.

For some reason I haven't been knitting as much as I'm used to during TV time. I have managed to get this first square (that I frogged and re-started) of the Great North American Afghan to the halfway point, so I thought I'd take a picture of it to share. So far, it's remaining true to gauge with the size 5 needles, but knitting so tightly is not very relaxing. Maybe that's why I haven't been knitting as much as usual.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Show Us the Way

(I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog on 02/28/2007.)

Reading: YirmeYahu (Jeremiah) 40-42

Jer 42:1 Then all the commanders of the army, and Yohanan son of Qareah, and Yezanyah son of Hoshayah, and all the people, from the least to the greatest, came near
Jer 42:2 and said to Yirmeyahu the prophet, "We beg you, let our petition be acceptable to you, and pray for us to יהוה your Elohim, for all this remnant, for we are few left of many, as your eyes see us.
Jer 42:3 "And let יהוה your Elohim show us the way in which we should walk and the word we should do."

Most of Israel was taken into exile into Babylon, but the remnant that was left went to YirmeYahu and asked him to pray to YHWH for them and ask Him to "show us the way in which we should walk and the word we should do." It seems they finally got the picture that YHWH was in charge and decided to stop going their own way and now finally wanted to walk in His Way.

Presumably YirmeYahu sought YHWH right away, but the Scriptures tell us that it was 10 days before he received an answer:

Jer 42:7 And after ten days it came to be that the word of יהוה came to Yirmeyahu.

This brought to mind the parable of the persistent widow (Luke 18:1-8). We need to pray like that--"crying out day and night to Him"--until He answers.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Re-Starting The Great North American Afghan

I believe I originally finished this first square (designed by Susan Levin) for The Great North American Afghan back in January. When I decided to start on the second square, I cast on the 240 stitches (arrrrrgh--that's a LOT of stitches!) with the size 7 needles the pattern stated and dived right in.

I got about 5 rounds into that second square, and as I kept looking at it and at the previously completed first square, I was not liking the way things were looking. I knitted the first square with size 8 needles (what that pattern stated), but it seemed like the difference in density of stitches between the first square and early rounds of the second square was more than could be accounted for by a difference of just one needle size.

With afghans I'm generally not all that particular about gauge because if the finished product comes out a little bigger or smaller, it's not as big a deal as it would be with clothing that definitely needs to fit properly, but of course, when making an afghan out of components like these squares, the squares do need to be as close to the same size as possible in order to get them to fit together well during joining and to have uniformity throughout the finished afghan.

Since it had been a while since I had knitted that first square, I couldn't remember for sure if I had done any gauge swatching. The patterns in this book (like most patterns) do state the usual "size ___ needles or size to obtain gauge". Since I kept having that uncomfortable feeling as I was knitting the second square, I made the decision to stop working on that second square and instead do a gauge swatch for the first square to hopefully ease my discomfort.

In the case of this square, the gauge is over the pattern's mosaic stitch, so I cast on with size 8 needles, and that first swatch was too big. I then did the same with size 6 needles--still too big--ack! Finally, size 5 needles produced the right measurements, so I must really knit loosely! Size 5 needles feel really small for worsted-weight yarn, but the measurements don't lie.

At that point I made the difficult decision to frog the first square, so I bit the bullet and did it. I then re-started it with the size 5 needles and got this far (below). So far the width is measuring right, but the mosaic stitch part has just begun, so it will be a lot more rows before I'll be able to tell if the length is staying true to gauge.

For the time being, I'm going to leave the second square on the size 7 needles where I left off. When I'm done re-knitting the first square and it hopefully turns out to be a keeper, I'll then be sure to do some swatching for the second square before continuing just in case I need to change needle size and re-start that one as well.

Since the first square is worked back and forth from bottom to top and the second square is knit in the round from the outside to the center, comparing their sizes respective to each other probably won't be possible until both are totally completed and off the needles. I sure do hope they end up close to the same size. With this afghan and the other afghans in this series, I'm going to continue to pay very close attention to gauge from now on!

Monday, May 12, 2008


(I originally wrote and posted this to my previous blog on 02/28/2007.)

Reading: Shir HaShirim/Song of Songs 1-2

When I was in high school, I took a class called "The Bible as Literature", and I chose to do my class project on this book because it is one of my favorites. What a beautiful love story it is!

My project was embroidery on fabric with clusters of grapes and other things mentioned in the narrative, all surrounding this statement that still stirs my heart:

Son 2:16a My beloved is mine, and I am his.

I wonder sometimes if women have an advantage in being able to exult in this kind of love for our Savior (Bridegroom) since it comes so naturally to imagine ourselves a beloved bride. This imagery is such a precious blessing.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers reading this--remember how special and precious you are!

I hope all the mothers in my life know how much I love them--my mother, mother-in-law, sister, sisters-in-law, daughters, daughter-in-law, aunts, nieces, cousins and all of my friends.

This flower and hand-painted flowerpot were made and given to me by my 8 year old this morning along with the card he made. I have to work today, but it's wonderful being able to look at my new little flowerpot here on my desk and think not only of my precious little boy who made it for me, but also of all the sweet gifts and love all of my children have given me through the years.

"Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body." –Elizabeth Stone

We had our Mother's Day celebration last night when Husband took us out to eat. We went to a buffet and 'ate ourselves silly'. Everything was delicious! We had a lot of fun together not only during the meal but on the drive there and back. It was wonderful, and I loved every minute of it.


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