Wednesday, March 30, 2011

How Do You Spell Relief? S-H-O-P-P-I-N-G

Online shopping, that is.  Come on- I had to relax and recoup from an insane couple of weeks. Do you honestly think that going into a store would help me with that?  I *hate* shopping.  (Yarn, book, and grocery shopping are the only exceptions.) Granted, I did have to go into an actual store this weekend since I am woefully low on clothes that fit my ever expanding body.  Let's just say my "girls" spell relief: n-o-m-o-r-e-q-u-a-d-r-o-b-o-o-b.

I've finally been able to rest up and put the craziness of Children's Day at the Mall behind me. Well, almost. As I told Tracy and Kuddles in the comments from last post, I could always use some more sleep. Especially since I may have been a leeeetle eensy weensy bit crankier than normal recently. Lack of sleep, stress, raging pregnancy hormones...not a pretty picture.  I was feeling like Hallmark's Maxine and was just hoping for a neighbor kid to wander onto my yard so I could shake my fist and yell, "Hey! Get off the lawn! *muttering* Crazy kids these days have no respect...  And pick up that dog turd!"  I also seem to use a New York accent when I tell them that. With a gravelly old lady smoker voice. (No- I wasn't testing out my gravelly old lady voice just now. Shut up.)

Something else has been really bothering me a lot lately- a huge pain in my butt.  Literally. My tailbone has been killing me for some time and my lower back has also been acting up from all the standing from the fruit preparation/cooking I've been doing. I was hoping to find a donut pillow at Target or something but no such luck. I did order a coccyx pillow (online!) and am anxiously awaiting it- hopefully tomorrow or Thursday.  I also think I'll crochet a pillow cover for it so that when people see me lugging it around everywhere I go, instead of thinking, "I wonder what's wrong with her butt?" they'll think, "That's cute! And the pillow ain't bad, either." Teehee! (I'm serious about the pillow cover- I have one in mind that's making me giggle and I hope it'll look as good in real life as it does in my head. Teehee, again!)

In other shopping news:

My blocking wires arrived but I've not yet had time to utilize them for my Squooshy project. Hopefully Finish Friday will remedy that little problem.  Granted, I still need to find "wool wash" to soak it in so I can block it correctly.  Argh. Now I know why I've never blocked anything. I hate shopping. And, I'm too lazy.

I had also ordered a few books- I start feeling overwhelmed and I start sneaking back into my ultimate escape zone. With crochet designing you have to think and plot and calculate and frog and curse. Books let you escape everything in real life and let you live vicariously through someone else's, whether real or imaginary. Thus, I read Drunk, Divorced, and Covered in Cat Hair by Crazy Aunt Purl. She was a person I was recommended to follow on Twitter, so I did. I did not know at the time that she ran an insanely successful blog and was also an author. I just thought she was a funny lady who would tweet back to me after I responded to her tweets. I checked out her blog and that's where I found out about her book and, since I was in a money spending mood and Amazon just happened to be opened on my computer, I ordered her book. I then read it in one sitting. I laughed. I cried. It moved me, Bob.  I heart her. 

I also ordered two crochet books. One I've been wanting for a while- it's Kim Guzman's Learn to Do Tunisian Lace Stitches and it also comes with a DVD that shows step by step how to do the stitches. Like my own personal Kim Guzman Youtube channel.  I lurves it!  As some of you may know, I'm pretty good with Tunisian crochet color work. However, I've only ever used Tunisian simple stitch and really wanted to try my hand at other Tunisian stitches. I can't wait to start on some of these stitch patterns! (Btw: she's working on a new book (or two?) but may have just been inspired by my little Geekling to create Tunisian Baby Clothes. SQUEE!! Those will be awesome, indeed. Need to start practicing those new stitches! You too! Buy the book!)

The other crochet book is Crochet So Fine by Kristin Omdahl.  There are so many gorgeous patterns in this book; however, I bought it primarily for the Shimmer Beaded Lace Cape.



Yes, it's another wrap, but I can actually picture myself wearing this one. I may have also pictured myself wearing huge Jackie-O glasses with a Holly Golightly cigarette holder casually held in the air. Note to self: start smoking. All the cool kids are doing it.  (Don't judge me. How else am I supposed to get my gravelly old lady voice?? Have you heard my voice? An admin assistant at my Mister's work thought I was 12. When I get riled up, I start speaking at 400 words per minute and my pitch keeps getting higher and higher. When the dogs start howling, I know it's in the Minnie Mouse on helium range. Although, if I start smoking, I may die of lung cancer or emphysema or, even worse, get premature wrinkles. *shudder* Maybe Minnie Mouse isn't so bad.)

I also bought a prenatal yoga DVD and am going to try it for the first time tonight and am hoping the stretching will help out with my tailbone/back pain. Ok...actually I'm not going to try it tonight. I've been typing too much while sitting on my butt and now it's time to go to bed. Argh.  Oh well- Downwind Farting Dog pose will just have to wait till tomorrow.

Get off my lawn!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Pureed, Dried Fruit- Welcome to My World

So I've been pretty consumed with the NatCroMo portion of March, but haven't really touched much on the NatNutMo (National Nutrition Month) part.  These last two weeks have been NatNutMo'd out the wazoo for me so I've pretty much got fiber of the colon cleansing kind on the brain.  As I mentioned last time, (yesterday? the day before? what day is it? where am I? I want my mommy!) I am making fruit leathers for Children's Day at the Mall. I've been making a LOT of these gigantic oversized fruit roll-ups.  Every day. For the past 10 years.

They are actually very good and quite pretty, if I do say so myself.

Mango Strawberry

Strawberry Mango
I'm actually waiting for another batch (of apple sauce/strawberry/mango) to finish up so I can go to bed.  I have one last batch to run tomorrow and then Saturday I'll finally be able to dole them out to all the sticky faced little buggers at the mall.  (I may have gotten a tad cranky in the midst of my fruit roll-up filled days.)

Something I learned: if you have a dehydrator, instead of using the fruit roll sheet that comes with it, cut parchment paper to fit the racks. You'll be able to peel the fruit roll off a lot easier and you don't have to worry about washing another dirty dish.  Win-win.

Another something I learned: that strawberry mango fruit roll looks so pretty before it dries.  However, once it dries, you won't see the pretty mango anymore- just a large red circle. Still tasty, though. But, if you let it dry for too long, instead of strawberry fruit leather you will end up with strawberry fruit paint chips.  This does not happen with either the mango rolls or the apple sauce rolls, though. 

The great thing about these is that they are 100% fruit. No sugar added. Just blend the fruit and pour. So easy to make and they are really very good! I guarantee that, even if you have a super picky kid who won't touch fruit, they will eat these thinking they are those store-bought, sugary, cavity magnets. They'll never know they are instead eating fiber filled, vitamin and mineral carrying, super good for you, cavity magnets. (Just keeping it real- they are sticky....but soooo good!)

Ok- I hope that dehydrator is finally done. I'm really tired and I truly am getting cranky- my Mister just lovingly told me that he missed me, kissed me, and asked me to go to bed. I yelled at him lovingly replied, "OK! JUST LET ME FINISH MY BLOG!" (Yes- for reals.) I'm a terrible wife.

I'm coming, honey! I'll make you some dried fruit! And a lasagna! Mister? COME BACK AND LOVE ME!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Busy, Busy, Busy

Just a quick check-in: 

1) This Finish Friday!!! was a success- although, technically it was a successful Sewing Saturday since I finished the Watermelon Tote for the auction at my church at 3am. I had to take it to my church by 8:30am Saturday.  My church is 35 minutes away from my house, so I had 4 hours of sleep and am still trying to catch up on my missed slumber. (BTW- it was the most sought after purse and brought in beaucoup bucks at the auction- more than I sell it for in my etsy shop. EEEP! So extremely proud!!)

2) Also on Friday, I was able to make 2 lasagnas for my friend who is recovering from surgery, which is part of the reason I had to sew into the wee hours of the morning. Another part is the whole, "I need clean underwear NOW" thing again. And, finally, the other part has to do with my multiple trips to the grocery store due to my incompetence in reading food labels. FYI: sour cream is NOT cottage cheese and, though some may be able to go rogue and substitute it in a lasagna recipe, I do not mess with my recipe. Ever heard of "Engagement Chicken?"  Well, this is my Engagement Lasagna.  I believe it is the main reason my Mister married me. He may love it more than he loves me. People ask me for the recipe all the time and I politely decline.  This is extremely potent stuff and I take my superpowers seriously. I can't be responsible for duping some poor sap into proposing to his harpie girlfriend. I already duped my poor sap Mister- let them find their own superpower.

3) My Squooshy was long enough! I stubbornly pressed on (and on...and on...) and proved those voices wrong- HA! In your face!! Don't mess with me- I've got superpowers!

4) I'm waiting for some blocking wires I ordered from Amazon so I can block it and then finish what I have in mind for it. Pictures to follow. (The voices are telling me that I've never blocked anything before so what makes me think I'll actually finish this project.  Their kryptonite is strong, but my mule-headedness is stronger.  I hope....)

5) I'm finally almost to the color work portion of my Geekling's blanket! WOOT! I love it! Unfortunately, so does my cat. My Mister found our darling little girl sleeping on it when he got home from work today. Unfortunately, we haven't cut her nails in a couple weeks.  SNAG-O-RAMA.  I resisted the urge to scream and cuss at our little ball of fur (took all my superstrength- may need wool infusion very soon!) and instead figured I should make her something so she can leave my stuff alone. This is a pic of her on a different project from a couple weeks ago:

You want it back? You feel lucky, punk?

6) I've been very busy with work stuff. Every year we participate in the Children's Day at the Mall and it is coming up this Saturday. This is the second year that I'm in charge of the food demonstrations. Last year the theme was the Rainforest (or something like that) so I made the Wild Wraps. This year the theme is Space Buddy Blast (or something like that) so I'm making Astronaut Fruit Leathers. Basically fruit roll ups made in a dehydrator.  Soooo good. Soooo easy to make.  Soooo difficult to keep my Mister away from them. I think it's residual effects from my Engagement Lasagna- makes him want to devour anything and everything that I make.  I told you- powerful stuff.

7) Until after Saturday, I'm going to be pretty busy this week so I don't anticipate much crocheting. I'm going to have major overtime which is good on my wallet but bad for....well just about everything else.  I really can't wait until Sunday.

I'm checking out early tonight. I'm really exhausted, y'all. Superpowers fading....send wool reinforcements.......must....eat......lasagna......

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Road Goes Ever On and On...and On...and On....

I'm feeling a little like Bilbo right now.  I've even shaved my feet, but that didn't seem to help.  (Although it did help my Mister not cower in fear anymore when I take off my socks.) I've been working on my variegated project to just git-r-done, but it's a pretty monotonous two-row repeat ripple all done in dc and chain stitches. Since the yarn is sock weight, the length just doesn't seem like it's getting long enough fast enough for the number of stitches in it. I don't even think blocking is going to get the length I was envisioning for it, which means....I really should listen to the voices in my head, just this once, and frog the sucker so I can start all over again. Granted, I'm just obsessive stubborn  dedicated enough to finish it off to see if maybe, just maybe, it will be long enough.  And just to prove those voices wrong so I can laugh in their faces with my sweet, sweet triumph. Victory will be mine, witches! Muahahahahaha!

Ahem.

My other project- my Geekling's blanket- is something I'm very excited about and I can't wait to see it completed.  However, for far too many rows of the blanket, it's a pretty boring length of Tunisian simple stitch.  It will all be worth it (the voices keep telling me) but for now it's a mite bit repetitive.  I can't wait til I start on the color work, which is what is fueling my obsession right now.  "I'm another row closer....another row closer... another row...great googly moogly!  How many stinking rows are there??!?"

So, hopefully sometime soon I'll be able to show you what I've been working on- either a finished variegated project, or a newly rewound ball of Squooshy that I'll auction off on Ebay after stomping on it like a petulant child.  Geekling's blanket will take a little longer, but that one will definitely get finished.

I am already planning for this Finish Friday- I do need to line my Watermelon Tote since the auction is Saturday. I don't think I'll be able to do much more than that since a dear friend of mine has just had emergency surgery and I've volunteered to take her family a couple lasagnas for dinner. (She's married with 4 boys- 3 of them teenagers. Prayers for her are greatly appreciated.  Also for her recovery.)

Take it away, Bilbo.

Roads go ever ever on,
Over rock and under tree,
By caves where never sun has shone,
By streams that never find the sea;
Over snow by winter sown,
And through the merry flowers of June,
Over grass and over stone,
And under mountains in the moon.
                       J.R.R. Tolkien

Stitches go ever ever on,
Over hook and under me,
By couches where never vacuum has gone,
By cats that always seem to see;
Over projects my hands have done
And through the woolly messes strewn,
Over pillows and my hun,
And under tables all afternoon
                         GegeCrochet

Monday, March 14, 2011

Ask Gege: Adding Tunisian Stitches

I received a question from a blog reader from Canada (welcome, eh!) that read:

"I have started a blanket with the Tunisian stitch.   The dilemma I am having right now is that I did not stitch enough rows.  I am wondering, can I somehow add rows to my already half done blanket?  Thanks for your time." 

I did respond to this reader, but thought, "This looks like a job for...*dun da da dun* Super Gege!"  After images of my glorious cape gracefully waving in the wind subsided, I decided that the only proper way to demonstrate how to do this was via video.  Sooooo......without further ado, here's my first installment of  "Ask Gege"



You can see the last remnant of my Neti Pot mishap, but as you can see, my Monkey's Paw has healed rather well.  I do hope this video helps!  I'll try to do more of these videos for questions that come my way.

Now I'm off to my creative hovel...and to make dinner.  On the menu?  Salmon en Papillote by Alton Brown.  Healthy, quick, easy and SOOOO YUM!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Finish Friday-ish

This Finish Friday!!! definitely was not as successful as the last one.  At least in the "finish" sense. I did want to work on lining my Watermelon bag; however, I found that the auction isn't until next weekend. When given the opportunity to procrastinate, I always say, "Yes, please."  I don't look a gift horse in the mouth. The tartar buildup is disgusting.  Also, I was very distracted by two different projects.

The first one is my variegated experiment that I've been doodling with.  I figured that combining the Squooshy yarn with a solid plum color would temper the color blotches and hopefully calm the uneasiness I was feeling.

AKA: Yarn Maalox

The color changes were definitely a lot subtler and the new yarn matched perfectly. I used a worsted weight wool/acrylic blend with 20% wool. The Squooshy is 80% wool, so combining them gave me 100% woolly goodness. (It's yarn- my math is supposed to be fuzzy.)  Even though I was liking the color, the bulkiness of the combined yarn wasn't feeling right for what I have in mind. I used a J hook at first but the fabric was a little stiffer than I was hoping.  So I frogged it and tried with a K hook. It definitely had better drape; however, it wasn't the same as the light and fluffy feel the sock yarn had.  So, I decided to frog it yet again and start over, yet again, with just the Squooshy.  (Ok, yes I do love this yarn because of the purple color and feel, but I must admit that the name just makes me happy.  Squooshy.  Squooshysquooshysquooshy! It's what Charo would say if you gave her a crochet hook instead of a guitar.)

The second project that had me distracted is one that I'm VERY excited about.  It's my Geekling's baby blanket and I was finally able to buy the yarn for it. I also had to finish planning it out (with hopefully non-fuzzy math), so that took a bit of time.  However, I am pleased to say that I have started it and it will most likely take up most of my time for the next couple weeks. SO EXCITED!

I took the variegated project with me to the movies tonight and, in honor of NatCroMo, I happily crocheted in public while standing in line at Chipotle and while waiting for the movie to start. (We saw Battle: Los Angeles.  Spoiler alert: Los Angeles is saved at the end.  You may rest easy tonight.)  As I mentioned before, I really haven't been crocheting since September, so it really does feel good to have those creative juices flowing again.  Even my Mister asked me tonight, "You have your mojo back, don't you?"  Yeah, baby, yeah!  I got my mojo back!

So, even though I didn't finish a project this Friday, I did check two things off my list: I finished planning the new blanket, bought the yarn, and started obsessing about crocheting it.  Huge win!

Wait.....*counting*. Stupid fuzzy math.

Squooshysquooshy!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

To Variegate or Not to Variegate, That is the Question

This week has really been a great, creative week for me. I was able to finish another bag (for me!) and have been working on a project that was in my "need to frog and reuse the yarn" bin.  Lyteyz talked me into finishing it when she was over Saturday and I'm glad she did.  New projects have been tumbling through my head, as well, which is always fun.  Granted, that usually means I'm going to go through a spurt of Crochet ADD which means my Mister is going to start getting stressed as the yarn slowly but surely takes over our house again, but, meh.  He'll get over it.

Actually, this week has been full of "new."  (Like when I said, "Well, that's new," when I sneezed and was surprised by a wee bit of wee that squeezed out. Being pregnant just keeps getting better and better.)  I am working on a new project utilizing a new yarn in a sock weight, which is also new to me.  However, what is not so new is that it's a variegated yarn.  I've had some bad experiences with variegated yarn (see blog post here)- it was the yarn I learned to crochet with and....well:

Yes. I know. Shut up.
The pattern for that purse was made with two strands of yarn held together. I held two strands of different variegated yarn together because, as my crochet newbie mind reasoned, if they were pretty individually, they must be mind blowingly beautiful together.  Obviously I was wrong.  Had I held one of the variegated with a solid yarn, the outcome would have been much more tempered rather than seizure inducing.

This is the first round ripple I made:

round ripple in pinks

I made it for my sister because she loves pink. That middle pink/red variegated yarn was one of my first yarn purchases (surprising, no?) and I loved it. However, I've always had a little "off" feeling with this blanket. Don't get me wrong- I was extremely proud of myself since I had just learned to crochet and made my first large item and my sister does use it. I like the stripe of variegated yarn that separates the colors, but that large puddle of variegated yarn in the middle has always bugged me. It just feels like it somehow doesn't quite belong there- center stage. Granted, now that I'm preggers, all I can see is a darkened areola on a large pink boob. I hope my sis doesn't read this post- all she'll think about is her boob blanket.

I've since learned how to use variegated yarn sparingly which has resulted in much better results:

First purse I made for her- makes up for the boob blanket

Made 3 of these- one for me!
But, other than felting with it (I have quite a few variegated wools in my stash), I'm a little gun shy about pulling out the multi-colored yarn.

Which brings me to today.  I had won a skein of Zen Garden Squooshy Yarn as one of my Bobby Awards last year (generously gifted by DodgeCreations.). The colorway is Grape Burst and it's in purples (my love!) and pinks, so of course I fell in love with it right away.

Purple AND Pink- swoon!
Doesn't it seem like it is going to be a self striping yarn?  The colors seemed spaced a good distance apart, so I was not bound with fear when I thought of using it.  Self striping? Bring it. Color puke stain? Makes me clench tight with nervousness- just like sneezing now.

So, imagine the knot in my stomach when I finally found a simple stitch pattern to showcase the purple and pink loverlies and, instead of self striping, I saw this:

Et tu, loverlies?
My nervous tic subsided a bit when I tweeted this pic earlier today and received feedback from @CrochetAllDay who said she thought it looked nice and from @CrochetKim who said she thought it was pretty. (Btw, Kim Guzman just happens to be one of the most gifted and awesome crochet designers out there. If you have ever been on Crochetville or seen any crochet magazine, you've seen her work. Her Luna Sweater is going to be the first garment I make myself once the Geekling arrives.) Since two crocheters that I very much respect voiced their approval, I find myself second guessing my original apprehension.

So, I'm going to continue on with this new project.  I think it's going to be yet another stole/wrap.  Yes I keep making them.  No I don't use them.  (Sadly, not even my L.A.D.Y. Stole of Transformation from last year. However, I actually want to add to its length but need some more Moda Dea Bamboo Wool, which just so happens to be discontinued.  I contacted someone on Ravelry who wants to destash it, so keeping my fingers crossed that I'll get it.)  Since I have just one skein of this Squooshy yarn, I'm a little concerned about the finished length.  I'm sure blocking will help with that, and I do have an idea for it if it is too short.  I'm hoping blocking will also help with the color distribution, as well.  We'll just have to see how it ends up.  Hopefully it won't be another variegated abomination that leaves another color puke stain on my crocheting career.  (Deep breaths, Gege, deep breaths.)   

Does anyone out there have some examples of good finished objects from variegated yarn?  Anyone?  Bueller?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Well, Whatcha Gonna Do?

Good news: This morning was the first morning in nearly two weeks that I was not jolted awake by a five minute coughing fit of death.  I think my cold is FINALLY on its very last legs.

Bad news: It was a very sadistic cold and I think it was trying to end my crocheting career. I bought a Neti Pot last Monday in hopes that it would magically cleanse the virus from my sinuses with its eastern medicine voodoo. I was following the instructions to sterilize the Pot by using water that had been boiled and then swishing it around with dish soap to clean it. However, the instructions did not say to let the water cool before pouring it in, clamping on the lid, blocking the spout and then shaking vigorously like a maraca.  The stupidity of my actions clicked in my brain in slow motion as the lid flew off, releasing the built up steam and scalding water all over my crocheting hand. My sister said it looks like The Monkey's Paw.  I don't like her. And I feel like an idiot.

Wish for $200. I dare you.


Good news: My hand is healing very well now and it did not impact my ability to crochet. I also did not need a bionic hand transplant like I was hoping  fearing.

Good news: Sewing Saturday was a good idea.

Bad news, but Good news, too: Sewing Saturday did not result in any sewing.  My friend lyteyz was able to come over but, instead of sewing bag linings like we had hoped, we instead ate and talked and laughed and ate some more. Then I showed her some of the things our sewing machines can do. Then we talked some more. And ate.  It was a good Saturday and, even though I didn't get to finish lining my bag, we did have a lot of fun. I also showed her my Bag Lining Tutorial which covers basically everything we were supposed to do but didn't. 

Good news: I was productive before lyteyz arrived Saturday morning and I was able to felt all three of the bags I finished on Finish Friday.

Bad news: I used Cascades 220 wool on one of the bags, as well as my beloved Patons. I had asked the LYS owner if Cascades would felt with Patons well and she assured me it would.  She lied.  Patons is the clear winner in the feltability department. It felts faster with no stitch definition. It is also softer in the hand and costs less AND it comes in a ready wound skein instead of a hank.  I really don't see what all the fuss is about Cascades, especially since it left my bag a little wonky. I fart in its general direction.

Smells like....watermelon??


Good news: I think my next Finish Friday!!! will be utilized in finishing my bags. I will finally be able to use my Watermelon Tote this weekend! It'll be mine, all mine!!

Good news: A friend from church asked me to donate one of my bags for a charity auction this coming weekend.

Bad news: The only bag I'll have finished is my Watermelon Tote.

Good/Bad news(?): Time to use The Monkey's Paw.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

FINISH FRIDAY!!!

I'm very pleased to report that my first Finish Friday!!!! was a rousing success. Not only was I able to finish my two Felted Watermelon Totes (whoo me!) but I was also able to finish another purse that I started and had almost completed over a year ago.  All I had to do is finish the flap- why I put it off for so long, I'll never know.  Especially since I was making it for one of my BFFs.  I even showed it to her and she loved it.  And then I put it away and never gave it to her.  I'm such a tease.

But now all three bags are ready to be felted which makes my heart happy. (I was hoping to have them felted today but my washing machine was otherwise engaged in what is called "laundry day," or as we call it, "I really need clean underwear NOW day".)  Even though the crochet work is complete, the bags themselves are not finished per se. They still need to be lined and, well, finished.  Blerg.  So, I'm thinking of implementing yet another NatCroMo Resolution....at least for tomorrow.  Tomorrow is going to be (drum roll please!) Sewing Saturday!!!!

I'm hoping lyteyz will be able to come over tomorrow. She has the same sewing machine I do (the very awesome Brother XR900) and we're hoping to have a day of discovery to see what this baby can do.  Oh, and line some bags.  I have quite a few to do, but I'll be happy if I can knock out one, but hopefully two....or more....unrealistic? Moi?? Never!

I must admit, I really needed this day today.  I had been neglecting my hooks for much too long.  Sure, I've picked them up here and there, but to actually spend a day with them really got my creative juices flowing.  So much so that I finally made a decision......I know what blanket I'm going to make for my Geekling!!  Squee!!!  I've been planning it today and really cannot wait to get started on it. Even though I was only supposed to focus on finishing things today, I just couldn't help myself which is a good sign, indeed. 

Not bad for my first Finish Friday!!! Three UFO's are out of my bucket, I now have a new blanket to start obsessing about, and my Mister and I don't have to use our swimsuits as underwear anymore.  Here's hoping next week's Finish Friday!!! will be as full of win as this one was.

Friday, March 4, 2011

NatCroMo Resolutions

So I didn't make any New Year's Resolutions this year.  As I had mentioned earlier, I really didn't want to start a year with a list of my future failures.  (Yay for optimism!)  However, since March does happen to be my favorite month, I decided I am going to make some NatCroMo Crochet Resolutions for this month.  I really do have a lot of items to cross off my crochet to-do list and I figured that of all months, this is the month to get the ball rolling. 

So, in honor of National Crochet Month, every Friday is going to be (drum-roll please!) Finish Friday!!!! Each Friday (which I now have off- whoo me!) I will work on a project (or more depending on how much work is involved in said project) to finish it.  I may start a new project during the week, but I need to work on finishing a UFO each Friday.  Hopefully it will get my Crochet ADD under control and will massively decrease my UFO project list.  WHOO ME!

For my first Finish Friday!!!! I will be working on TWO Felted Watermelon Totes.  I started both of these last fall- one of them is for my mother and it is alllllmost done.  It was supposed to be for her birthday in September.  Ummmm.....yeah.  Huge crochet fail for me.  The second one is actually for MOI!  I'm not biased or anything so I can objectively say that it is a freakishly cute bag. I've made many of them for sale and, gosh darn it- I want one for me!!

I figure I have a few hours worth of crochet work on them- I crochet pretty darn fast, if I do say so myself- so I am confident that I will be able to finish both of these items tomorrow.  And I'm not even going to cheat to ensure my success by getting a head start tonight.  *crossing fingers behind back* Nope. Going to be completely finished on Friday. *teeheehoohoo!*

In honor of my Watermelon Tote Crochet Marathon, and to help me decrease my wool stash, I am offering a limited supply of Felted Watermelon Tote KITS in my Pomquat Etsy store.  That's right folks!  I'm offering a complete kit- wool, handles, beads, decorative button, and magnetic clasp- along with the pattern! (Fabric for lining is NOT included).

If you have made this pattern, please drop me a line and send me some pictures!  I'd love to see (and even share here on my blog!) your creations!  If you have the pattern but have not started it yet, or if you just have some UFOs you need to get done, join me tomorrow for FINISH FRIDAY!!!!

Alright- I'm going to get my supplies ready in anticipation for my crochet marathon tomorrow. I'm pumped! I'm ready!  I'm an animal, Rocky!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

March is Here!

The bestest month of the year is finally here! I'm so excited, my Spidey senses are beginning to tingle- either that or I may need to consult with my OB again....  Either way, I am so happy to know that spring is right around the corner!  NatCroMo and NatNutMo, I am ready for you to work your amazing fibrous magic on me!

I really could use some March Magic.  This cold has really kicked my butt big time. I finally went back to work today but am wondering if I pushed myself too hard since I'm still hacking up a lung if I talk too much (not too conducive for counseling others) or laugh too hard (as I found out tonight watching Raising Hope.  Hi-freaking-larious show!)

However, even being so sick I sounded like I gargled with glass was no match for how I felt when I got home, parked my car, and checked my mailbox.

OPEN LETTER TO MY NEIGHBORS (or anyone who walks their dog in a neighborhood):

Hello to all the wonderful dog people in this neighborhood!

I'm sure your lovely dog, Cujo, is just a ginormous, lovable, slobbering ball of fur who loves to go on his afternoon walkies.  However, when your Mr. Ed sized dog leaves a chihuahua sized turd right in front of your neighbor's mailbox, the polite, neighborly, and non-vomit inducing thing to do is to PICK THE FREAKING THING UP AND THROW IT AWAY!  In YOUR trashcan!  I know you saw it- heck, even Chekov on the International Space Station could see it.  Most importantly, I could see it!  And smell it through my congestion impaired red nose! I do not dump my cat liter in your front yard but if I ever find out which one of you lovely dog people allowed your precious Sweetums to leave me this present, you bet your patootie I am going to return the favor. Pooper Scoopers are not just funny sounding mythical objects- they are real and were invented for a reason.  If you can afford food for The Beast, you can afford a $10 device that will spread peace and goodwill in your neighborhood rather than parvo and Hepatitis A.  If you are not willing to clean up after your dog, get a cat.  They come potty trained.

Sincerely,
Your Neighbor Who Put the Crazy in Crazy Cat Lady.
Cats rule! Dogs drool!

Giving it a test drive