Friday, November 11, 2011

Good Girls in Sin City

I'm in Las Vegas!  My best friend and I are joining my sister, Lucia, who is turning 36 on Sunday, November 13th.  Can you believe it's 10:30 and we are already in our room?  lol.  I am having crafter's withdrawal!  I brought my laptop so I can squeeze in some work, but my sister is giving me the evil eye; so I'm keeping away from it.  I'm starting to plan my next project.  I promised a friend to make something for a friend of hers.  This friend's friend is a photographer.  She donates her services photographing little angels that are no longer with us. I could not imagine the parents' pain at such a horrible moment.  They can keep a picture of their baby, dressed in something pretty.  I was asked to make something for tiny babies.  I found some sites with patterns for such occasions.  Let's all pray tonight for those angels, please, and their families.  Also, we must not forget our veterans.  Today is Veteran's Day in the U.S.  We cannot take our freedom for granted.  My brother was in the Navy.  I salute him as I salute all soldiers, past and present.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A Kid at Heart

I remember going to school and wishing I had a Hello Kitty tote or pencil or -- anything!  Growing up as the first of six made it difficult to have toys or extra stuff.  I didn't have hand-me-downs, though; so I knew I was lucky.  Now that I'm an adult, I admit that I have lots of toys.  I love going to the theater to watch animated movies or Harry Potter or just kiddie movies.  

So I was very happy to learn about amigurumi.  There is so much out there, free or not.  I have so many projects queued up that I think I'll be busy for many months.  Then there are all the baby items I want to make.  I don't even have children!  lol.  Which means, of course, that I had to make something for any baby, just because.  

Anyone in Southern California?  Isn't the weather just marvelous?  I throw on a sweater and surround myself with yarn and whatever I need to create whatever feels like being created.  Here are two of my latest finished projects.  Actually, make that three.  The all-in-one suit was a gift for a cousin-in-law's first grandchild; the ruffles afghan (photoshopped pic) was not meant for anyone but has been sold to my sister-in-law's sister; and the Hello Kitty was for a very good high school friend (Go, Class of '91!).  

The gorgeous little girl is my brother's 23-month-old baby, Marie.  She wouldn't let go of the Hello Kitty; so she ended up in the picture.  I hope you like them all.  The best is Marie, of course ;)

Friday, July 22, 2011

A Sorrowful Celebration

Many of us go on and on when something unfair or tragic happens to us or our families, but what about the few that keep their true pains to themselves?  It must take so much courage to not tell everyone that they are facing death and the terror that they're feeling, not to mention the pain.  When my aunt was killed this past March, we had just marked a few hours before the seventh anniversary of my mom's untimely passing.  It usually falls upon me to notify the entire family, and it's always quite an undertaking.  I still discover new family members every time I have to give notice, usually about a loved one's passing.

One person I called I knew since I was a little girl.  She's my aunt, I think.  Unusual that I still don't know if we're cousins or if she's my aunt.  My great-grandparents raised many of their orphaned grandchildren, including my mom.  So the lines were blurred, and they're all now my aunts and uncles.  This particular aunt is not so much older than myself, and I am 38 years old.  She has a son in high school and a son in elementary school.  When I called her to give her the bad news about my mom's little sister's murder, she was sad but also, strangely, detached.  Then she told me that though she wished she could be there for the wake and funeral, she was very sick but would try to go.

She had been sick for years, and I didn't know.  Now that she was about to face chemo, she couldn't hide it anymore.  I caught a glimpse of her at another cousin's baby shower, and she was so thin and frail.  Two weeks ago, yet another cousin posted on the family's Facebook walls that she was planning a surprise family reunion for her.  Our ailing aunt had mentioned she wished she could see the family together again.  You see, the doctors have told them that there's little time left.  She is undergoing chemo yet again.  Hope is always the last to die.  But instead of starting this coming Monday, July 25th, it was moved up to this past Monday, the 18th.

I am glad to have a chance to see her and talk to her again, but I am sad beyond words.  I should be grateful... when my mom died, she'd suffered a burst aneurysm and didn't come out of her coma for 10 days before passing.  It is the only time that we are going to have the opportunity to say to any family personally that we love them before dying.  Since 2004 to now, we have lost at least one family member a year.  In 2008, we lost four.  My maternal grandmother's sister lost her husband and then her 30-year-old daughter within one year of each other.  I hope that my cousins, aunts, uncles, nieces, and nephews manage to make it a lighthearted gathering.  I hate to stress my aunt or make her more scared than she already must be.

God, what should I say?  What can I ask?  Is there anything I can do to make her forget, at least for a while, that this may be our last gathering with her?  God, take her pain away now, and receive her in your celestial embrace when her time comes.  I humbly pray to You that You grant her and her children and husband a miracle.  I humbly beg this in the name of your beloved Son, Jesus Christ.  Amen.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

An Inspiring Experiment

I have finally finished my doily-ghan!  Upon picking it up from the center, though, it has inspired me to make a dress for my baby niece.  The doily-ghan is 54 inches across.  I used Bernat Baby Sport yarn in Pale Blue and Patons Beehive Baby Sport in Vintage Lace.  I finished it at 5 a.m. today!  I was determined to see it finished.  I'm really happy with it.  I don't know whom to give it to, though.  I may just keep it.  I have not kept anything I've made so far.  Have a beautiful day, everyone :)

This last picture is what I think would make a pretty ruffled dress, at least loosely based on this pattern.  I'd invert the hearts and make it a halter dress.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Romantic Pineapples Doily-ghan

Ugh!  I can't find my cameras.  They're probably stilled packed in a box somewhere.  I have my phone, but the video quality isn't the best for videos longer than a minute or two.  I apologize to anyone that may be waiting for help with the soccasins.  If I don't find my cameras soon, I'll just have to buy a proper videocamera.  What a sacrifice.  lol.  I've been meaning to get one anyway.

In the meantime, here's a pic of a doily-ghan I've been working on since February.  I started and stopped a few times for other projects, but I'm committed to it until it's finally finished.  What do you think?

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Soccasins -- Again! Yay!

I made a pair of soccasins last year for a nephew.  I have many requests for more, but I haven't worked on altering the pattern for bigger sizes.  I'll just try thicker yarn for now and see what happens.  About the end of February this year, someone sent me an e-mail to ask for help with theirs.  I had posted a picture on  I asked Megan, the designer, for permission to post pics showing the different stages of the soccasin.  She graciously consented.  Then my aunt was taken from us, and all of that went out the window.  I am ready to tackle the picture part.  If only I can find my cameras.  LOL.  I moved and haven't unpacked everything.  My phone will have to do for now.  The other pics in here have been taken with the phone.  I think it may work out.

It's a gorgeous, warm day in Bellflower, CA.  The A/C is on -- I know, I'm a cheater -- and I will get to crochet today.  I'm trying to figure out what colors to use for the new soccasins.  Maybe I'll try something bright this time.

Everyone have a beautiful 4th of July weekend, and stay safe.  Carpe diem!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Can it be? Will Alfie Soon be Back Home?

I think I spotted him, and if it wasn't him, it's another lost African Grey parrot.  Of that I'm sure.  I was driving along the 605 Freeway South, near the Firestone exit.  I was admiring a hawk up ahead when I realized I was seeing flashes of red.  Upon closer inspection, I saw a red tail!  Then he was directly above us, and I couldn't see anymore; so I yelled to my sis'-in-law to please check because I think it's Alfie!  She actually saw him directly above and discerned the telltale red tail, gray feathers, and white under-feathers!  I am so excited.  There's a riverbed and a park right by where I saw him.  I'm going to start visiting those areas on days off.  I'm bringing his favorite:  Peanuts!  I have missed him so, so, so much.  God grant me the blessing to have Alfie home again.  I do believe; I do believe; I do believe...

The preliminary hearing in my aunt's murder case was supposed to take place this past 22nd of June, but it was continued to July 22.  I was sick with a stomach flu and couldn't go.  I hate not going because the killer's family has the audacity to glare and act threateningly towards my cousins.  Is there no sense of right and wrong in this world?  Yes, their loved one is in jail.  But ours is dead!  If we could have it any other way, she would still be alive, and he would be free!  HE killed my aunt.  How in the world does that entitle them to be offended?  I just hope that he changes his plea to guilty.  Then we can try to heal.  My cousins can mourn their mother's death.  They wouldn't have to defend their wish to have justice served.

June 30th would have been my mother's 58th birthday.  I wonder what she would look like.  She would have loved Marie so much.  She would have been thrilled that my brother is married and is a father.  I hope that someday diabetes can be cured.  I pray that she is resting in peace and that she knows that her sister, my aunt, is buried right next to her.  They were separated as children when they were orphaned, but they'll be together for all eternity.

What a sad day it's now turned out to be.  I didn't set out to make it sad; so I'll get to work on some transcripts, roughs, and then I'll crochet a bit before going to sleep.  I hope it's been a beautiful weekend for everyone.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Time Flies

I attended my goddaughter/niece's high school graduation yesterday... already an adult!  I close my eyes and remember the moment she took her first breath, followed by a big cry.  She was my sister's mini-me!  Her mom, being only 17 at the time, was too fearful of carrying her for fear of dropping her.  I took charge and became the new mom's teacher.  When the nurse walked in, she asked me how many children I had, to which I promptly replied, "None."  And 20 years later, I still don't, but I'm blessed with 13 nieces and nephews.  I've lived with most of them at one time or another and feel as if they're partly mine.  Isn't that crazy?  Well, I can't believe she's 18 and starting junior college next fall.  I graduated 20 years ago this year too.  Wow!  How time has flown by in a flutter.  I wonder if I'll ever be blessed with children of my own.  At this rate, I don't think so.  I'm thankful to have so many surrogate children.  If only my mom were here still...

So I've been working a little more on the baby blanket, and I have to say that now that it's well under way, the pattern is beautiful.  I am using Lion Brand's Pound of Love in two different colors.  Instead of using the recommended I hook, I am using the G hook.  That makes the stitches a little closer together.  Even then it's still pretty wide though I haven't measured the width.  My only change is that instead of continuing the pattern stitch all the way to the end and then fastening off and flipping the blankie so the foundation chain is on top and then adding one row of the pattern stitch, I've worked the pattern stitch to half the height that I want.  I then flipped it over and continued the pattern stitch from the foundation chain.  I will continue the other half in that direction.  It just made more sense and seemed more symmetrical.  I am attaching pictures.  I also am using two colors instead of one.  I really like the look of this blankie.

Blankie progress

Flipped blankie to work opposite direction

Blankie waiting for me

Everyone has a different technique when it comes to changing yarns.  I prefer to add in the new yarn right before I finish the last stitch and continue by weaving in the new yarn, leaving the other yarn's tail hanging for weaving in at the end.  Well, I made a slight change that cleaned up the yarn change.  Someone else may have posted it by now, but I haven't found it.  Here are some pics that I hope are useful:

Last stitch completed all the way

Re-inserting hook into last two loops

New yarn, looped, on hook

1.  Pulling new yarn through;
2.  Old yarn pulled completely out by pulling entire loop.
I also have pictures of my technique for weaving in the new yarn as I complete my stitches.  I think I'll leave that for next post.  It's almost 4 a.m. in good ol' Bellflower.  I should get some rest.  I keep forgetting to sleep.  LOL.  

Hasta pronto, amigas!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Work, Work, and More Work!

I wish I had more time to crochet and work on finally finishing the office area in my room, but, alas, when I do have free time, I'm too tired!  My dad and stepmother were here for three whole weeks.  Don't believe what they say about evil stepmothers because this one came without the "evil."  She's wonderful.  It had been a year and a half since I'd seen them.  I miss having my dad around.  I welcome his admonishments and his advice -- not everybody loves us enough to gently try to point us in the wrong direction, no matter the age.  You know those little things only a parent does?  You miss them sooooo much when they're gone.  You take them for granted when they're alive.  I would give anything to have my mom around to remind me to eat or to just brush my hair out of my face.  June 30th she would have turned 58.  She always did say she didn't want to grow old.  I wish she had.

I'm working on a baby blanket at the moment that seems to be working up quickly.  The free pattern is Bernat's, and it is called Beautiful Baby Blanket.  The link is:  You'll have to be signed in or will have to create a profile if you don't already have one with Bernat.  The picture is meant to be rotated clockwise.  I'll learn how to rotate it for the blog eventually.

Now here's a pic of the last one I made.  It went to a cousin that had her baby shower a couple of weeks ago.  I hope she liked it.  It's Bernat's Baby Sport Lace Border Blanket, not to be confused with the Baby Coordinates Lace Border Blanket.  Here's the link:  Oh, and I also sewed the ribbon onto the blanket so little babies don't accidentally hurt themselves with it.

Carpe diem!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

It's been over a month now that we lost Aunt Narda.  I accompanied my cousin and her sister-in-law to court on Monday.  I had a chance to speak to the Deputy D.A. handling the case.  She's confident that the case will end in a guilty verdict and a life sentence.  She's right that closure isn't achieved even after the sentencing, though.  That will take a long time coming, if ever.  My mom and aunt are buried together now, though.  May they rest in peace and be forever embraced by Our Lord.

I started crocheting again.  Hopefully I can use up my scrap yarn.  I'm just playing around with everything.  I have yet to use my swift and ball winder.  That's today's goal.  There is a sweater I want to make for my baby niece and a doily-ghan I want to finish.  I really should make a list of all the projects I have in mind.  I keep adding more and more but don't seem to advance much.  Then I think of what I want to cook for dinner, and my mind is wandering off again.  I think today I'll make more enchiladas to finish off the sauce I made during the week.  It is nice and spicy.  Being Mexican, I mean spicy.  LOL.  After dinner, I am getting back to my transcripts.  It's a never-ending story with those transcripts.  It's my livelihood, though; so I'm glad for them.

About three weeks ago, my parrot, Alfie, flew away.  I call for him every day, but I know he's either very far away or someone else has him.  He's such a curious boy and loves to talk to people.  I hope he's fine.  I miss him more than I thought I would ever miss him.  I pray every day that he comes back.  Once spring is over and his hormones have calmed down, I hope he's back.  I imagine I hear him every day and then go out looking for him, but of course it's just my imagination.  Be safe, baby.  I love you.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


We go about our lives and take for granted that we will live to old age as will our loved ones.  My mother lost her mom at nine years of age.  My grandmother, Luz Maria, had four children ranging in ages from nine to one year old.  Her children were raised separately as the two youngest were children from her second marriage.  I met my aunts when they came to the U.S. when I was a little girl.  My youngest aunt was 16 or 17 at the time, and I was seven.  She was so fun, full of life.  She loved to dance and taught me so I could dance with her.  She later had a family of her own, four beautiful children.  This past Saturday, her boyfriend attacked her while everyone was asleep.  He was assumed to have gone home after an argument.  He returned, though, and stabbed her in the neck and stomach area and then hurt my aunt's second youngest as he fought to disarm that man and her other two sons tried to stem her bleeding.  At the age of 48, she was gone, very early Sunday, March 6.  March 5 was the seventh anniversary of my mother's passing at age 50 -- her eldest sister.

How anyone can take a life is incomprehensible.  That anyone would hurt my aunt -- a warm, loving, happy person -- is unfathomable.  There is no comfort for her children nor the rest of the family.  We are shell-shocked.  We are angry.  We are grieving.  It seems within reach to turn back time to just three days before and protect her.  Logic is out the window.  How can it be possible that everyone's lives, especially her children's, are altered so horribly in seconds?  Yes, I do believe that we will join our loved ones in Heaven, which means that she is finally in her mother's arms and surrounded by my mother and many others we've lost over the years, especially these last seven years.  Is it selfish to not be comforted by that thought?  Why did she have to go in such a painful way?  What fear, what panic she must have felt when she realized she was mortally wounded.  My cousins must be reliving the horror every moment.  They feel there was something they could have done to save her.  The bastard -- no lesser word is appropriate -- took her life, and he took their security, their peace... he took their lives when he took my aunt's.  I hope that the law brings at least a small amount of peace.  I hope he never has a moment of peace nor a moment of happiness.  I hope that his own life as he's known it is forfeit.

Aunt Narda, rest in peace.  Do not worry about your children and grandchildren.  They are surrounded by love and all the support we can give them.  When you see my mom, please give her a big hug and kiss for me.  I love you.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

African flower crochet blanket

I happened upon a post at Crochetville and had to find a pattern.  I'll hold off until after finishing my UFO's, though.  It's going to be a struggle not to start!

African flower crochet blanket

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Dinner at Hikari

My BFF and I went for dinner at Hikari in the Montebello Shopping Center, kind of a birthday dinner though not planned.  We had had an early birthday meal last Saturday at La Española (see previous post); so this was unexpected.  It was her first time here and my third.  I love this place!  Their Yaki Noodles (stir-fried) are delicious.  We tried their salmon roll.  The looks on our faces were comical when the roll was brought to us.  It was flaming!  That was new.  So here are a couple of pics of yesterday's food.

We later enjoyed a slice of the Parisian chocolate cake from Porto's Bakery in Downey.  No pics, though.  I enjoyed yesterday if only because I didn't want anyone reminding me of my age.  LOL.

Monday, February 7, 2011

La Española Meats, Harbor City, CA

My BFF and I went to try out their paella, and, let me tell you, it was addictive!  You can't beat paella for $9.  You get tapas as well.  We're definitely returning, this time to try their seafood paella.  Here's the link to their website:  Don't go expecting a restaurant.  They import Spanish charcuterie and cookware and myriad other items.  They showcase their wares by making the paella and bocadillos (sandwiches) on Saturdays at noon.  At least, the paella is available only on Saturdays.  You know what I loved second to the food?  The true Spanish accents all around.  Ooh, that makes it another reason for going back!

Not that I want to rub it in (yeah, right!), but here are some pics taken before we inhaled the food.  Buen provecho!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Deflated Gusto

The afghan is done!  Yay!  Oh, no... I washed and dried it.  Oh, no!  It pilled -- a lot!  Hard lesson learned.  Here's a before-washing pic just for posterity.  Research it is from now on.  I don't want this happening on the next one I am planning to make.  Ugh!

Super Bowl today... were you happy at the outcome?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

My Current WIP

I was so glad when we had all that rain and cold not three weeks ago, and now it's back to that blasted sunny weather in SoCal.  lol.  My hooks were enjoying their travails through the hills and valleys of the cowls I'm making, but will anyone wear them this season?  I think not.  It's still very cold in that dreaded city, Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, which is where my current project is headed hopefully soon.  My stepmom asked me for a lap throw since last year.  Needless to say, I am a tad bit behind schedule.  The yarn is Lion Brand's Wool-Ease Thick & Quick in three different colors.  I now need more yarn.  It's taking up more than I anticipated.  I need suggestions for a border.  Any ideas?

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords stood up today!  Thank God.  Isn't it amazing how much she has improved since that fateful day 12 days ago?  Let's all keep her and her family in our prayers.

Am I Really Going to do This?

This is a surprise.  I have been following lots of blogs and didn't know how to find them.  I had no idea what my dashboard was until I realized I had to create an account.  I guess a little info about myself would help in case anyone happens to stumble upon this page (highly unlikely).  I have been a steno queen for 10 years now, which means I've been a stenographer for 10 years.  I do not work in court but work in law offices, doctors' offices, hotels -- wherever my job happens to be.  It's sometimes interesting, educational, and other times a struggle to keep my eyes open.  Just don't tell any attorneys that!  Pretty much like crocheting, I go into auto mode and pound away on my little machine while I'm making my grocery list or wondering what's going to happen on the next episode of Grey's Anatomy.  I really like my chosen career.  So if anyone has any questions about pursuing it, feel free to ask.  We always need more good reporters out there.

Though I started crocheting while in kindergarten, I didn't really do it for pleasure until about a year ago.  My dear mom (RIP) used to work full time as a seamstress and also worked on weekends and nights at home for customers.  She used to crochet a lot, but given the lack of time and the surplus of kids (four at the time, later to be joined by two more), she taught me so I could help while she was at work.  She also taught crocheting on weekends.  She did it all, and it was all in her head, whether it was baby crocheted clothing or sewing a wedding dress or anything anyone wanted that they happened to see somewhere.  She was called by the Lord on March 5, 2004, at 50 years of age.  I feel closer to her when I crochet or when I see my parrot (she loved birds) or when I cook.  Her daughters are an extension of her, and we're her legacy.

In tribute to her, I sign this blog for the first time,

AngelRoseLite (Our angel, Rosa Luz)