Crocheting – Dishcloths

I received a call from my aunt a few days before Christmas.  We talked for a while about my new hobby, crocheting.  She asked if I could make a few crocheted dishcloths for her.  I was between crocheting projects, so I figured I would make a few different ones for her.  Thus, I began my search for crocheted dishcloth patterns.

I remember skipping a dishcloth pattern in the Crocheting For Dummies book, so I started with that one.  If you own the book, it is located in Chapter 5.  (If you don’t own the book, I highly recommend you procuring a copy.  It’s a great reference tool for all of the crochet terminology and the various stitches).  Next, I headed to my favorite place, the Red Heart website, and found this Dandy Dishcloth pattern.  Finally, I went over to trusty Pinterest where I found two other patterns – one from Erika’s Crafts Corner, and the other from Petals to Picots.

Crochet Dishcloth Patterns

Completed Dishcloths

The Luxurious Washcloth with Border in the Crocheting For Dummies book is very basic.  It is a series of single crotchet (sc) stitches with a border also using single crochets.  The finished project measures approximately 10 inches square.  I used Sugar ‘n Cream 100% cotton, worsted weight yarn, color Rose Pink for the dishcloth and edging.

RedHeart Dandy Dishcloth

Pattern Courtesy of Crocheting for Dummies

The Dandy Dishcloth found on RedHeart.com was a little more entailed in that it used single crochets  (sc) as well as 3-double crochet (dc) clusters.  The finished project was approximately 9 inches square.  I used Sugar ‘n Cream 100% cotton, worsted weight yarn.  The dishcloth color is Love and the border is Hot Pink.

Crocheting for Dummies Luxurious Washcloth with Border

Pattern Courtesy of Red Heart

Next, Erika’s Crafts Corner provided very easy instructions for this dishcloth.  The pattern incorporates single crochets and double crochets in a cluster to provide texture.  Erika states this can be used as a hotbed, potholder, or washcloth, so the pattern has endless uses.  Of the four dishcloths I made, this was the one I enjoyed the most.  I’m not sure if it’s the pattern or the color yarn used, but I really liked this one.  The picture doesn’t give the yarn justice, it’s a combination of purples and  blue-greens.  The yarn is Sugar ‘n Cream 100% cotton, worsted weight yarn, Crown Jewels Ombre color.

Crochet Dishcloth Pattern

Pattern Courtesy of Erika’s Crafts Corner

The last dishcloth was found on the Petals to Picots website.  The pattern works single crochets and double crochets and achieves clusters that provide texture.  Although the pattern is extremely easy, and the fault is absolutely mine (I wasn’t counting my stitches), I had a difficult time getting it right.  I must have been preoccupied or just tired.  It really is an easy pattern that’s great for beginners.  The final product came out great, just took a little longer than I expected (again, at no one’s fault but my own).  I used Sugar ‘n Cream 100% cotton, worsted weight yarn, Rose Pink color for the washcloth as well as the edging.  The finished product measured approximately 8 inches squared.

FullSizeRender

Pattern Courtesy of Petals to Picots

I used yarn that I had laying around, so the colors were unintentional.  When perusing dishcloth patterns, I noticed that all of the patterns called for 100% cotton yarn, I’m sure this has to do with absorbency and durability.  I preferred the smaller dishcloths, while my aunt said she preferred the larger ones.  So it’s definitely a personal preference on size.  Overall, the directions were easy to follow and the dishcloths didn’t take long to make.  A big THANK YOU to those who shared their dishcloth patterns online, I appreciate your generosity!  Now, on to the next crochet project…

2014 Activity Report

It’s finally here, our totals for last year!

In the middle of the year, we switched from the Nike+ watch to the Garmin Fenix 2, so I’m not sure how accurate our distances are for 2014.  Also, we purchased our bikes before we had anything to track the mileage on them.  That said, below are our 2014 year totals from Fitbit and for running and cycling (as best we know).  We anticipate 2015 to be a much more active year.

Emily’s 2014 Activity Report:
4,325,555 Total Steps
1,846 Total Miles
Most Active Day – March 9, 2014 (37,417 steps)
Least Active Day – November 16, 2014 (1,463 steps)
Run Total 191.9 miles
Bike  Total 27.1 miles

Nick’s 2014 Activity Report:
4,358,191 Total Steps
1,874 Total Miles
Most Active Day – February 9, 2014 (36,139 steps)
Least Active Day – August 7, 2014 (2,268 steps)
Run Total 226.5 miles
Bike Total 52 miles

Weekly Activity Report 01/25/2015

Our long run (10k) was cut short this weekend.  We ran on the treadmill rather than outside, and well, I just can’t run on the treadmill for an extended period of time.  Otherwise, we increased mileage on the bike and both of us are getting more confident in the swim.  Below are our total distances for each sport as well as our Fitbit steps summary.

Weekly Activity Report ending 01/25/2015:

Emily –
78,675 steps (daily average 11,239)
Run 7.1 miles
Bike 24.2 miles
Swim 1275 yds
Strength 48 minutes

Nick –
74,686 steps (daily average 10,669)
Run 9.9 miles
Bike 23.7 miles
Swim 1050 yds
Strength 26 minutes

Unboxing of the Garmin Foot Pod

Some time in December 2014, my Garmin fenix 2 began miscalculating my pace on the treadmill.  Although most of my runs have been on the treadmill this winter, I am making an effort to do my longer runs outdoors to keep the watch calibration information current.  The watch is calculating my pace between 8:30 and 9:00/mile.  My normal outdoor pace, as well as the pace I run according to the treadmill, is 11:30-12:00/mile.

My data is now skewed in Garmin Connect.  After each treadmill run, I correct the distance in Garmin Connect, and the pace recalculates.  As you can see below, the pace is still recorded in Garmin Connect at the faster pace from the watch, even though the average pace has been corrected.  This has also resulted in the miscalculation of my VO2 Max data as well as my training effect data (because the watch senses me running much faster than what is happening in reality).

Garmin Connect Pace

This is just a limitation of the watch, because it is based off of wrist movements.  Thursday I got frustrated with my data not being correct and purchased the Garmin Foot Pod from Amazon.  It arrived today.  Unboxing was a bit anticlimactic, as it only contains the foot pod and instructions.

As you can see the foot pod is small in size and comes with a lace clip to secure to your shoe.  I didn’t realize this when I purchased it, but the foot pod is powered by a replaceable CR2032 battery.

Garmin Foot pod

Top view of foot pod

Garmin Foot pod

Side view of foot pod

I intend on calibrating the foot pod this week and wearing on my treadmill runs for sure (I’m undecided at the moment whether I will wear it on my outdoor runs as well).  Either way, I plan to use it consistently for the next few weeks and write an in-depth review afterwards.

Update 04/23/2015:  See the Full Product Review

Christmas Sunset

I was going through pictures this morning and found two photos I took of the gorgeous sunset on Christmas Day.  They were taken approximately 5 minutes apart as the sun was setting.  Enjoy!

Bar in the Basement

When we purchased our house, we asked the contractor to finish the basement.  The plans they submitted to us included a wet bar.  We hadn’t really planned on having a bar in our basement, but figured it would be a great convenience to have access to beverages and snacks while watching movies or playing games.  Plus, having this extra space meant I able to design the wet bar.

I immediately began searching the internet for wet bar plans.  After several hours of looking at pictures, I decided to combine several designs into one.  Here is my rough sketch.

Wet Bar Sketch The contractors completed the basement the day before Thanksgiving.  However, it wasn’t until this past weekend we had the cabinet hardware installed.  I’m excited to reveal my hard work (you know, my hours scouring the internet) and creativity!

Features include:  Espresso cabinets with oil-rubbed bronze hardware, under-cabinet lighting, dual-zone wine and beverage cooler, microwave insert, and two 5-bottle vertical wine racks.

Besides the exquisite bar in the basement, we also have a family room, an exercise room, extra bedroom and full bathroom.  The space behind the sofa near the window will be the home of our game table once it’s complete.  We spend most of our weekends relaxing in the family room, watching movies, and playing video games.  The white french doors access our exercise room.  When the weather is intolerable outside, we come in here to acquire our miles.  Nick and I have spent several hours on the treadmill, trainer, or lifting weights in here this winter.  And I’m sure many more miles are yet to come!

Weekly Activity Report 01/18/2015

We spent some time at the gym this week working on our swimming.  Below are our total distances for each sport as well as our Fitbit steps summary.

Weekly Activity Report ending 01/18/2015:

Emily –
77,942 steps (daily average 11,135)
Run 9 miles
Bike 19.7 miles
Swim 400 yds

Nick –
81,789 steps (daily average 11,684)
Run 12.4 miles
Bike 18.3 miles
Swim 800 yds