Giving Thanks

It got just a little crazy around Thanksgiving and I did not have a chance to thank my readers who follow my blog or just pop in.  I don’t have a huge following but I am grateful for those who take the time to stop by.  As always, feel free to leave comments.

We had our usual (traditional) feast.  I am grateful for time with my family, preparing, eating, watching movies–James Bond marathon this year.  I have taken advantage of a slew of $5 movies at WalMart and we have the Home Alone series for our Christmas marathon as well as  our stand-by movies: Christmas Vacation, Prancer and A Christmas Story.

The other project taking (too much) of my time has been trying to clean the grout on our tile floors.  We bought our first house in 1970 and had no-wax vinyl flooring and, of course, shag carpeting.  We bought our current house in 2006 and no one mentioned that we needed to seal the grout on the tile floors.  I would think that whoever laid the tile would do that, but I would be WRONG.  After years of scrubbing the floors, the grout was just getting dirtier and not wanting to spend upwards of $500 to have someone come in with harsh chemicals, I have tried to get the grout clean myself. Last year I tried a commercial grout cleaner and a homemade natural recipe but was not happy with the results.  I decided to try one more recipe, which I found on Pinterest.  It was not clear about the 1:4 ratio but here is what I used (put this in a spray bottle):

1/4-cup water

3/4-cup white cleaning vinegar

2 T Dawn dish soap

Spray the grout with plain water, apply cleaning baking soda to the damp grout, spray the water-vinegar-Dawn solution on that (it will bubble) and let it set at least 20 seconds.  I let it set for a minute.  I found a wire grout cleaning brush to be more efficient than a toothbrush.  We are not excited about the results–huge difference in clean but not consistent–and will now go ahead and do what most people do–stain the grout.  We couldn’t find the French Vanilla color at Lowe’s so will send for it.  This is still going to be labor intensive but the grout will be a uniform color throughout the house and is supposed to hold up for 15 years, which will probably work out well for us.

Now on to some fun stuff.  I hauled out my knitting from last spring, did some ripping and finished my fingerless gloves.  For some reason, I always end up with a hole when I put the thumb stitches on a holder and knit the palm.  I pull the yarn as tight as I can, but still end up with a hole, so I just leave a long tail when I finish the thumb so I can go down a few rows and close up the hole.  I will include my pattern in a future post–it needs a little revising.

Hole near thumb join

Hole near thumb join

Candy's Fingerless Gloves

Candy’s Fingerless Gloves

Not wanting to store leftover yarn, I usually make a matching scarf but thought I would try a cowl instead.  It called for #6 24-inch circular needles but I found that 19-inches was more than long enough for 162 stitches.  You can find this pattern free through Paton’s website.  It calls for Paton’s Lace Sequin yarn.  I forgot to check my gauge so it is bigger than what it should be.  I tried pinning the top part but don’t like the way it hangs so will rip and start decreasing the green portion and see if that works.  The bottom variegated section actually covers my shoulders which I like.  I’ll get back to you when I fix it.  There are also crochet directions with this pattern.  It is very simple, only eight rows, which you’ll quickly memorize.


Ii nearly forgot.  I wanted to try a new cast on and found The Chinese Waitress cast-on.  Give it a try.

That’s it for now.  Find one thing to be grateful for today.  I’ll be back soon with an update on The Collage Animal Project.  I thought of another idea: Make a collage Ch-Ch-Ch-Chia pet.  Or not. Heehee.


Hi—I’m Candy P. I live in beautiful Northwest Arkansas and write this blog about quilting. I love the entire process of quilting from design to piecing and appliqué, to free-motion quilting on my Janome. I have been sewing since I was five and started quilting in 1991 with a group in NE Minnesota. We used cardboard templates and scissors and did everything by hand. I have since made traditional quilts, donation quilts and Quilts of Valor; I’ve done paper piecing and foundation quilting but now really enjoy improvisational piecing using scraps from my stash or my hand dyed fabrics as well as making art quilts. I am also currently trying to finish any and all unfinished projects. I am so far behind I can never die. I have always been a maker, a sewist and needleworker, running the gamut from hand embroidery to macramé, knitting, crocheting, crafts, book binding and mixed media projects. I have taught a lot of classes including fabric painting, origami, and calligraphy, Dancercise (who remembers that) and my own exercise classes. When I’m not in the garage dyeing fabric or in my studio, I’m at Zumba or walking on local trails and photographing art or whatever catches my eye. I currently belong to Crystal Bridges, AQS, The Quilt Show, NWA Modern Quilt Guild and the Van Go-Go Girls (a local art quilt group). I occasionally make it to the piano and the golf course and enjoy cooking with my husband and generally wreaking some kind of havoc with my daughter. You can read my previous blog at and here (previously but you cannot read my blog as northwind at The Quilt Show, apparently lost forever. I write about my current projects, mistakes and all, and often tell you what products I use (with no compensation). I am open to suggestions about blog posts and will be happy to answer any questions you may have about my projects or posts. Comment or email me.

Posted on December 6, 2015, in Holidays and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I believe this web site has some rattling good info for everyone :D.


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