Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Caya was chosen as the mug shot of the day on channel 8 morning news today.

James was so excited. He has been wanting to get a picture on the mug shot of the day for about a year. A few nights ago he was tired of waiting. Slide a chair over, climbed on the cupboard to get the mug he wanted. Got the camera and chased Caya around, getting a blurry shot of the baby and a few of his mug. 

Monday, November 28, 2011

Christmas Count Down Advent Calendars

Last year I bought my boys Advent Calendars, not very nice, a thin card board with windows to open. Inside each window was a tiny waxy tasting piece of chocolate. They were tired of the bad chocolate about half way though. James has been asking for an Advent Calendar for about a month now. So today I made my boys happy. Christmas Count Down Advent Calendars.
Supplies need: 25 Mini Candy Bars, Scissors, tape, paper, ink jet printer

I did a image web search on Google for free Christmas designs. I downloaded the ones I wanted on my computer and used Picnik, a free online image editing software to crop them to the approximate rectangle shape. Then I imported each image into OpenOffice and adjusted the size to 1 3/8" (1.38) x 3" rectangles. Some of the images are a bit skewed but they work. I typed each count down day right over the image and printed on my ink jet printer. You could also use any wrapping paper you already have and a marker to write on them, or print out my wrappers from here - Page 1 & Page 2 designs.

Cut out all 25 wrappers

Wrap each mini candy bar in a wrapper and tape on the back side.

I then used masking tape and stuck them to the side of my fridge.

You could tape them to some tag board, a bed room door or just leave them in a bowl and make the search for today's treat part of the fun. I made name signs to go above each calendar as well.

The boys came home from school today and were very excited when they saw them. They are waiting hard for December 1st to come so they can start the count down.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Butterfly Hat Pattern for sale to raise donations for Relay for Life

I have pattern sizes for hats Preemie to 24 months. To purchase a hat pattern please click on the following link Relay for Life or click on the Relay for Life button in the top right corner of this blog. Donate $5 to my dad's site in honor of my sister Leslie Schuldt. Then follow up with an email to me dana@schuldt.org and let me know you donated to purchase a pattern. Please be sure to email me with the same email address you used to make the donation with "BUTTERFLY HAT" in the subject line. After I confirm the donation I will email you a pdf file of the pattern. You can email me also with any questions you may have on the pattern.
Hat by pattern tester Marta
Photos on How to knit the Butterfly stitch click here.
To take a look at my other posts about the Butterfly hat click here

Friday, June 17, 2011

How to do the Knit Butterfly Stitch

I am knitting the preemie sized Butterfly hat. I used double pointed needles. On the first round of the butterfly stitch you will be slipping stitches with your working yarn in front (towards you), follow the pattern for number of stitches to slip. One row of slipped stitches, next row knit all, repeat until you end up with three strands of yarn that look like this.
Make sure that the strands of yarn are held loosely with your work stretched out. If you leave these strands too tight your hat will pucker up. A little slack is better than too tight. Your butterfly stitches will look nice and neat if you can keep the tension the same for all three strands.

Once you have three strand the very next row above you will knit until just before the center of your three strands. Then put your right needle under the three strands.
Do a yarn over.
 Pull the needle back down and out from under the three strands.
Next you will knit the middle stitch, then slip the yarn over over the stitch you just knit. This gets rid of the extra stitch you created with the yarn over.
Continue knitting until the same spot on the next set of three strands and repeat.
 And there you have the butterfly stitch.
You can purchase my butterfly hat pattern by donating $5 on my Relay for Life site. Please click on the link in the upper right corner of my blog. Donate and then with the same email address email me at dana@schuldt.org with BUTTERFLY HAT in the subject line. Let me know that you donated, once I confirm the donation I will email you a pdf of the pattern. Please email me with any questions.
Another hat I knit
This Hat was knit by my pattern tester Marta

Monday, May 30, 2011

Butterfly Pattern Tester Photos

Hat by Tester Marcy

Hat by Tester RedStar

Hat by Tester Debbie

Hat by Tester Jackie

Hat by Tester Marta

I also wanted to send out a special Thank you To Marta for donating to our Relay for Life, raising money for the Hope to find a Cure, the reason I am designing this pattern in the first place. To donate you can click on the link in the upper right corner of my blog which will take you directly to the the Relay for Life website. Donating directly you will receive an emailed form so you can deduct from your taxes if you itemize and live in the USA anyway. If you donate $10 or more you are also purchasing a Luminaria which will Honor a loved one who has in the past or is battling cancer, or In Memory of a loved one who has lost their battle against cancer. You can enter their name in the Fundraising Honor Roll or in the message. Your loved ones name will go on a illuminated bag which will glow all night through the walk. Once I get this pattern ready, I will try my hand at selling it on the Ravelry site but I believe a percentage of the money will then go to paypal, or you can donate directly on the Relay for Life site.
If you donate as your way of purchasing this pattern please follow up using the same email address as you used to donate and email me at dana@schuldt.org. Once I confirm your donation I will email you a pdf file of the pattern. As we speak I believe I have preemie through 6 month size hat pattern ready.
 I would also like to share one more thing, Marta also had a cute idea to make the butterflies look... well more like butterflies.
She weaved in Red Heart Tiki decorative yarn, through each butterfly stitch and tied off on the inside behind each stitch. So cute! If you see this post Marta and have any tips or tricks please post a comment.

Thanks to all my wonderful testers I should have the pattern available soon.

Butterfly Knit Hat Pattern is almost ready

I've gotten most of the pattern testers replies back. I'm working on adjusting sizes for larger and smaller hats. I wanted to share a site I found extremely helpful to figure out sizes. This comes in real handy when you don't have a little one of your own the right size to test model.

Bev's Country Cottage

Bev lists head sizes by age in inches and centimeters, also give approximate height hats should be. If you scroll down on the pages she lists measurements for lots of other stuff too.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


No progress yet on the duckling and keets. I can hear quiet little peeps when I open the cover on the incubator. I hope I have some babies when I get home from work today.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Ducklings, Chicks, and Keets

I'm so excited. I hatched out 8 chicks this past week. Tonight a few of the ducklings and guinea keets are just beginning peck out of their shells. I know your not suppose to count your chickens before they hatch but I just can't wait. James is as excited as I am. He says, he's never seen ducklings before so he sure hopes he gets to see these.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Butterfly Knit Hat

I designed and knit this cute Butterfly Hat for my darling little girl. First knit pattern I've designed and would like a few people to test my pattern and give me some feed back. The pattern fits approximately 6 months old infants. If I have enough interest I may work up patterns for other size as well.

Butterfly Hat – infant size 6 months
US size 10, 6mm 16” circle needle ~ gauge 15 stitches & 21 rows = 4”
unstretched 15” circumference x 5.5” height (edge naturally rolled)
I used Caron Simply Soft yarn, but any worsted weight yarn should work fine as long as it is a solid color so the decorative stitch will show up.

If you are interested in being a pattern tester for me. Please post in the comments as well as email at dana@schuldt.org and put "Butterfly Hat Tester" in the subject line. I will email the first 10 interested people a pdf file of the pattern. Please post in the comments if you are interested in a different size, and if the interest is high enough I will figure out a pattern for other sizes as well. You can email me for any questions or advice and I will try and get back to you as soon as possible. In exchange for this free pattern I ask that you have the hat completed in two weeks, followed by emailing me feed back and photos with your permission to post them on my blog. I would also appreciate your photos linked to the Ravelry page as well if you are a member.

Thanks and happy knitting!

As of 5-17-10 all test knitters are hard at work. Thanks everyone. I'll post pictures when I get them back. You can still post comments on other sizes of hats that you may be interested in, if this test knitting process goes well. Thanks for all the support and compliments I've received. Dana

5-30-11 some photos are in ~ click: Butterfly Hat Tester Photos

Basic Knit Infant Hat

Just a quick note before we get to the pattern. I just wanted to let everyone know that I am fund raising for Relay for Life, Hope to find a Cure for Cancer. I have a Butterfly Hat pattern I am selling just for this cause. Please check out the link in the upper right corner of my blog to read our story and donate if you can. Thanks!

Basic Knit Infant Hat ~ Size 3 months
Over all size with out stretching 13" circumference 5.5" high
US size 10, 6mm circular needle 16" ~ Gage 7 stitches = 2"
I used Red Heart Camouflage 0971
Using this large of a needle makes for a very stretchy, lighter hat for the spring and fall.

Cast on 48 stitches, place a stitch marker and join without twisting yarn.
Row 1 - 7: * k2, p2 * Repeat to end
Row 8 - 26: knit
Row 27: * k2tg, k6 * repeat to end (42 stitches)
(tip: I like to place a stitch marker before I begin each repeat, then I don't have to keep count for the remaining rows)
Row 28: * k2tg, k5 * repeat to end (36 stitches)
Row 29: * k2tg, k4 * repeat to end (30 stitches)
Row 30: * k2tg, k3 * repeat to end (24 stitches)
Row 31: * k2tg, k2 * repeat to end (18 stitches)
Row 32: * k2tg, k1 * repeat to end (12 stitches)

Cut yarn long enough to thread through remaining loops on on hook, pull tight and weave in ends.

Decreasing quickly with out a knit all row in between decreases makes the hat have a flatter top, a little more boyish looking I think.

Ok Here is my first attempt at a knitting chart - click on it to view larger

What I've been up too

Butterfly Hat for my beautiful little girl

Bunny Blanket Friend for a gift - free pattern from Lion Brand Yarn.

Camo infant hat also for a gift.

I've also hatched out 9 baby chicks in my incubator. I have some duck and guinea eggs that if all goes well will hatch out this week as well. I can't wait I've never hatched duck eggs before.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

My little sister

 Just remembering my sister on her birthday. Hopefully she is having a big birthday bash up there in heaven. I've been hearing from a lot of your friends today. You are so greatly missed!
 Gotta show off those pig tails. So cute!
Can't believe there is a picture of you in a dress. I didn't think you wore any once you were old enough to pick out your own clothes.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Oh the chicken eggs

Well I had about the worst luck imaginable with the chicken eggs. On Saturday night we took the turner out. When I placed the cover back on I didn't realize one of the windows was loose. Sunday morning when I got up it was 90 degrees in the incubator. However, I could hear one of the chicks peeping from inside the egg with a tiny hole started. I fixed the window put some warm water in the tray to heat it up quicker. With in an hour the temp was back up to 97 degrees. The chick hadn't made any progress but was still talking. We left for the cities around noon. I checked on them again. Still no changes, the temp was good and the humidity was 85%. We returned home about 11:30 Sunday night I checked on them about 12:30, and we had three very wet baby chicks, and three more just starting to make holes. I left them in the incubator so they could dry out. When I woke up at 6am, there was no noise. For some unknown reason the incubator over heated, all my babies had died. Terrible bad luck on this batch of chicks.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Rose Headband & Hat

Here is the rose bud headband I talked about last weekend. I just love it. So cute and it will match her Easter outfit. Hopefully that will still fit her. She is growing like a weed.

I also made a newborn boy hat for a gift. I used two strands of yarn, one blue and one green. Part way through to make a stripe I did two strands of blue for three rows.
Wash cloth and the other hat I started are still not finished. I decided I had better work on my taxes before I spend any more time knitting.

Eagle Trouble

This young bald eagle is stalking my ducks. I saw him out the front window this morning sitting on one side of the creek. Then he would fly and try and hover over the creek, and then land on the other side. He did this numerous times. So I finally I took my camera and walked out to get a closer look. That is when he flew by me and I snapped this photo.

I found three of my ducks without a care in the world, cleaning and flapping in the water. None of them seemed to care that the young eagle was trying to figure out how to catch them.

Since I scared the eagle away from these three, he flew to the ponds where my other ducks were hanging out. So I walked over to check on them. They too seemed completely oblivious to the presence of the eagle. 

As I approached these seven ducks the eagle flew back up the valley. Just then another eagle came from the direction of the river and flew very low right over my head and up the valley where the first one had went. Then wouldn't you believe it one more. This one was flying high.

I remember last fall. This mama eagle was training three very young ones in our field across the creek just after Tony cut down hay. Well I think they returned. I hope my ducks learn to take cover like the chickens do.

The heifers were very curious as to what I was up to walking all over the pasture so early in the morning.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Kindergarten Round Up

My middle guy had kindergarten Round Up today. It went better than I thought it would. He is very shy and doesn't like new anything. So when it was time for all the kids to go with Mrs. Klug and Mrs. Doty and leave the moms and dads behind, James did not want to go. I went along holding his hand as they went on a scavenger hunt through the school. First the lunch room he didn't let go. Next the office, I managed to convince him to go in with out me and I promised I would wait right outside the door. Next was the nurse's office. This time I convinced him to go in with out me and I would go back to fill out the paper work I left behind. He was torn between holding my hand and the fun he was having on the scavenger hunt, but the hunt won out. Mean while they had four kids from the High School dressed as Dorothy, the Scare Crow, the Cowardly Lion, and Glenda the Good Witch (from a play they just put on). The lion was so funny. Running around telling people not to pull his tail. Just outside the nurses offices (and near the bathrooms) he asked Mrs. Klug if she'd seen a litter box any where around. We all laughed so hard, including James. It was so nice that the high school students could joke around with such little kids. When James finally came back to me, he was clutching a blow up lion and packet full of summer homework (the best part about school according to Mrs. Doty). James was so proud of himself. It was a good day. And to top it all off, my little girl didn't scream at Grandma while I was gone.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Off to work I go

Tomorrow is my first day back to work after my maternity leave. Luckily I'm only working part time, for the first three weeks my day care only had two days a week available, YEAH! Then in three weeks I start three days a week. Hopefully my little girl has a better day then I think she will have. So far she cries at everyone but James and myself. She even cries at Dad, Grandma and Grandpa. I guess she'll make those ladies at daycare earn their money tomorrow. I feel bad for all of them but especially my little girl.

Over the past few days I tried to get a few more projects in. I made a hat like I made for my little girl for Aunt Tammy to give as a gift along with a couple of headbands. I also knit my little girl a rose headband. I knit a little green and blue hat for gift to give as well. And last night I started on a knit dish cloth. But I didn't finish so hopefully it doesn't sit in limbo too long.

I'll try and take some pictures soon, and post them.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Eggs, Eagles, and Calves

My 5 year old James and I candled the chicken eggs today. We started out with 24 eggs my husband found in the barn. We ended up tossing 8 eggs today that looked clear when we candled them over a flash light. The other 16 have an distinct dark area covering over half the egg. A little worse percentage than when I pull fresh eggs from the nest boxes, but all in all not bad since we don't know how old the eggs were, and it was pretty cold around her the few nights before we found them. James is getting really excited to see them hatch.

We also started watching the Bald Eagles in Decorah IA web cam. He was hoping to see those babies hatch out today. No luck so far.


It was a bad day on the farm for our second calf born. His mama abandoned him last night in the cold. She never cleaned him up just left him lay. When my husband found him this morning at 7:30 he couldn't get up. He came to the house and yelled in, "Could you please clear a spot in the basement for a calf." (Interesting thing to hear - I had to go check to make sure I heard him right.) He came in carrying the little thing to put in front of the wood stove. When he first came in he was mooing so loud James kept covering his ears. My little girl didn't know what to think of it. We dried and dried for an hour. But it wasn't soon enough, the poor little guy died. What a sad start to the day.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Last night I started a batch of chicken eggs in the incubator. My husband found a stock pile of eggs in the barn rather than the chicken house where those hens should be laying. We didn't feel comfortable eating them since we didn't know exactly when they were laid. Instead of throwing them out I decided to see if they will hatch.

I warmed the incubator for 24 hours. Ideally they say the temp should be 99.5 degrees with about 60%  - 70% humidity. Last year I kept my digital thermometer at 99 degrees and the chicks started hatching a day or two early. I'm working with the same thermometer this year. The temp throughout the day goes up and down a few degrees so currently I have it at 97 degrees. My thermometer keeps track of the high and low for 24 hours, so far the high has been 99. Last year my high would reach 100 - 101 degrees. When the chicks hatched early, some didn't make it. Also quite a few eggs didn't even hatch even though a baby chick was inside.

This time I also decided not to wash the eggs prior to putting them in the incubator. I found conflicting information on the internet. Most say to wash and sanitize the eggs so you don't contaminate the incubator. I did find just a few sites that say not to wash because it affects the egg shell. So last year I did a few batches that I washed the eggs and one batch where I didn't. I had much more success with eggs that I didn't wash, just placed directly from where I found them into the incubator.

Now if I can just find where the guinea fowl are laying.

Sunday, March 20, 2011


This weekend I let my oldest have a couple of friends sleep over as a reward for being so great this week. I couldn't have asked for a better son. Doing all his chores and getting to and sticking with his homework and being a good big brother to his little brother. Then on Saturday my friend and one of the boy's mom from the sleep over came over to visit and hold the baby. She brought her other two boys along as well to play. So we had six boys and my baby girl for over six hours.

One - 10 year old
Two - 9 year olds
One - 5 year old
One - 4 year old
One - 18 month old
One - 11 week old

We visited, boys played and cried and played some more but they all had a great time. Baby girl took a few cat naps through the day but with all the noise didn't sleep like her usual self. Today she is making up for it. She slept for 10 straight hours last night, woke up happy, ate, played on the floor, took a bath and slept again for an hour. Woke up ate and is sleeping again. Life is good!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Easter Hat

My little girl keeps growing and growing, so it was time for a new hat. Yesterday I crochet this hat and added one of my knitted roses on the brim. She tested it out on her first stroller ride around the farm.

I started off looking on the web for a lacy type pattern. I found http://thedaintydaisyblog.blogspot.com/2010/04/shell-stitch-beanie.html . So I used the shell stitch pattern I wanted a tighter hat, not so stretchy so it just sits on her head rather than tight like a stocking hat. I used Caron Simply Soft Yarn and a Size G hook. I started off with a I think you call it a magic loop. Wrap the yarn twice around a few fingers, chain stitch through and around the two strands of yarn. Then I did 6 single crochet next to each other on the loop. Next pull the one loop and shortens the other loop. Pull it tight. Then pull the end of the yarn to tighten the second loop. I like starting this way because I always end up with a small hole in the center when I start making stitches in the first chain. Then I followed her pattern of increases. I went one row further since I was working tighter. I decided to add two rows of single crochets with out any increases before I started the shell stitch. Then I started the shell stitch pattern, followed pretty closely to Dainty Daisy's pattern. When I got to the bottom it says to do three rows of single crochet. I did two rows and then to add a brim I did a row of half double crochet. My next row again half double crochets but instead of a normal stitch, I did them around the post of the stitch. Doing this makes these stitches stand out to the side. For my final row I did two half double crochets in to each single stitch place. This gave it a nice wavy edge. To finish it off I added one of my knit rose buds which I just love.  With making all these changes in gauge and the pattern I'm pleasantly surprised it turned out to be just the size I was hoping for.

I'm thinking of adding little ear flaps, to help with the wind. But maybe I'll just do another hat.

Monday, March 14, 2011


I took the simple lacy look dishcloth pattern and used it as a headband. I used half double crochets for first and third row instead of double crochets to make it a little thinner. I also used a lot thinner yarn. I still used cotton but went down to a size 10 cotton thread and size F hook.

chain 61 loosely

Row 1: half double crochet in in chain 59 and all the way across. You end up with 60 stitches counting your turning chain. Depending on your gauge you may need more or less stitches, just make sure to keep an even number. Chain 3 and turn.

Row 2: *Skip one stitch and Double crochet into the next stitch. Double crochet back into the skipped stitch going behind the previous stitch (X stitch) * (repeat between *'s until one stitch left) One Double Crochet. Chain 2 and turn.

Row 3: Half Double Crochet to the end.

Hold both ends together forming the headband and slip stitch through the end stitches in all three rows. It works best to "split" the stitch rather than going in the space. You end up with a finer seam. Pull end through and weave in ends.

I tied on a flower I made over the seam, knotted the yarn but kept the ends long. The headband ended up being a little loose for the big flower. So I threaded the tail of the flower around an X stitch on each side of the seam. Gathered the headband up and tied the tail into a bow which is hidden behind the flower. This way I can let the gather out as my baby girl grows.

Feel free to post pictures of the items you made from my pattern and link back to my blog for the pattern. Please don't copy my patterns to your website or blog, please post a link back to mine. If you have any questions just drop me a note. And please let me know how my patterns work out for you. I love to see pictures. This pattern is my personal pattern and I do not give permission to sell anything you make from my pattern. It is for your personal use only.

Copyright 2011 Dana J White