Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Happiest Happy Dance

Today I heard the most amazing and fantastical news. I HAVE to share this with you all. We've been granted a one year stay on the CPSIA testing requirements!!! I just read it in the Etsy forums this morning. Woooo Hoooo!!!

I feel like finishing that Christening gown now. Yay!!!

Off to find out more info from other sources now. Hooray!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Fear

Fear:
1. a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid.
2. a specific instance of or propensity for such a feeling: an abnormal fear of heights.
3. concern or anxiety; solicitude: a fear for someone's safety.
4. reverential awe, esp. toward God.
5. that which causes a feeling of being afraid; that of which a person is afraid

fear, angst, anxiety, cold sweat, cowardice, trepidation, foreboding, misgivings, jitters.

At this point, you may be asking, "Why the fear? What does Anna have to be afraid of?"

Let me show you.

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Yes, I have gray hair and that gray hair must disappear. But, while I was shopping for the perfect dark brown hair dye that would match my current hair color, James asked me to go a different color. I think he would love me blonde or something. So, I went all out and bought red. This was as adventurous as I could handle. Please note: this dye was purchased a week ago and has yet to make it into my hair. (I guess the adventure died out when I got it home.)

Today is the day. At some point today I will go from being a brunette to a red head. I am scared senseless.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Unboxing Myself

My mother claims that I box myself in too much. I stifle myself. A couple of weeks ago I mentioned to her that I might buy only handmade items for Christmas gifts this next year. I thought the idea sounded brilliant. My mother, on the other hand, didn't. While she supported the idea of my purchasing homemade gifts, she thought that by saying "only" I would limit myself, thus putting that box around myself.

This is not the only instance I box myself in. I do it all the time. So, lately I have been un-boxing myself. Removing those boxes that hinder me from doing and being who I enjoy being. While I believe routines are important, when I have too many of them, I am no longer free to create. I lose my joy and I find myself spiraling downwards into a dark place I don't want to be.

So off come some boxes.

Today I felt like crocheting one of my old patterns. My Vintage Style Clutch. I was inspired to crochet her last night as I fingered my ribbons and fondled my stash of lace. This afternoon I actually finished the first half of my purse.

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So, now I am off to start the second side of this purse and then cook dinner. Leftover pork chops tonight. YUM! I am hoping I can finish this purse tonight and embellish it in the morning. Its going to be GORGEOUS!

Olivia the Sock Puppet

This morning, while I sat on the floor entertaining Barbie, Chloe pointed at my foot and exclaimed, "Mama! What's that?"

She saw the hole.

Yes, there was a hole in the bottom of my sock. Ugggg. Another pair bites the dust. Off came sock one which landed in the garbage can. Off came sock two...and as sock two was launched into space, it hit me. Waste not, Want not. Oh boy. What can I do with a sock.

Then it hit me as I retrieved both socks from the garbage can. Puppets!!! So, I got out my supplies and created Olivia.

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Olivia is a tad bit shy, but once you give her some attention she comes to life and is actually one of the most vibrant personalities you could ever meet. She loves singing and looking at photo albums.

Now I gotta figure out what to do with the second sock (the one with the hole.) I am thinking it might make a nice Barbie coat, complete with pre-fab cables.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Vintage Buttons

Look what the postman brought for me this morning. A lovely pressie!

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Vintage Buttons galore. I am in button heaven right now as I fondle each one and dream of what creation they shall adorn.

I realized this week that I can find buttons much cheaper on Etsy than I can at Joanns. Buttons with character and who have already proven their worth in the world. Not only am I helping out a fellow etsian when I purchase my supplies from them, but I save a bit of money as well. The above buttons were purchased from abandc shop. I paid not more than $10 for all the buttons you see. (and that includes shipping) I think I paid closer to $6 for all those buttons. $6 at Joanns would get me 4-6 individual buttons.

Now I just need a few more sales this week so I can shop for more vintage buttons and supplies. Oh how I love vintage!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Can You Smell That?

Can you smell what I smell? Go ahead. Stick you nose right up against the computer screen and take a huge whiff. Did you get it? Yes? No???? That which you smell (or don't smell if your smeller is not quite as proficient as it needs to be) would be the Chocolate Walnut Brownie bread we baked this afternoon - minus the walnuts, of course. (so hubby will eat it)

Let me tell you something because I forgot to tell you after Christmas. My husband is the BEST husband in the entire world. No one has one better. NO ONE. Do you wanna know why?

After 10 years of begging and pleading and hinting and crying and fussing and whining and imploring and beseeching on my part, he finally broke down and bought me a surprise. My very own Kitchen Aid Mixer! You know it was a surprise since I've been asking for one for the past ten years and had finally succumbed to the fact that I was never gonna get one. You should have seen the look on my face. I should have seen the look on my face. Boy oh boy...

And that thing has been running non-stop ever since.

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So, that is the chocolate walnut bread from this cookbook and is quite yummy. So far this week we have sampled

Cinnamon Raisin Bread (minus the raisins),
Foccocia bread,
Thin Crust Pizza Dough,
Farmhouse Buttermilk Bread,
and
Chocolate Walnut Bread (minus the walnuts)

In addition to those breads, I also began my very own sourdough starter this week.

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My mother bought me a subscription to Mary Jane's Farm magazine for Christmas and this starter was in the January issue along with some fantastic bread recipes I plan to try. Yummy! The house smells delicious. I think I shall go have another piece of Chocolate Walnut Brownie Bread minus the walnuts and slathered with butter before I brush my teeth and head to bed. Good night everyone.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Yarn Petting Payoff

Watch out people! I've let the creative juices out of the bottle. Why I have allowed myself to keep them bottled up inside for so long, I have no idea. But they are out and alive and freely flowing forth.

Today I petted yarn. Not anything fancy, mind you. Just the basic sort of yarn you can find at Joanns or Micheals. But I petted, nonetheless.

And it felt good.

Some yarn and buttons made it into my buggy and I can't wait to get started on these gorgeous tea cozy sets.

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A custom order came through yesterday. She asked for tangerine with silver buttons, possibly floral. This is what I came up with.

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Once I get the approval on the color, I will immediately begin her set. I am going to let her choose which buttons she would like though. I wasn't sure so I bought both sets.

Anyways, I am off now to create. I need to bake some bread, finish a pink tea cozy set, photograph it, list a purse on etsy, and then possibly sew some doll clothes for Chloe. Let's see how much I can get done today.

Tweet Tweet Twitter

WARNING: This post is NOT about birds. (Although I miss them immensely and wish spring would appear already, but thats totally beside the point.)

No. This post actually imparts my newfound love for twittering. You see...until last week, I thought I had a pretty good handle on the "cool" internet places to be. I never really got into the MySpace thing because it seemed to teeny-bopperish to me. I figured I was doing pretty good building and maintaining a website, a forum, and even have a facebook account. I have software to edit photos, software to build a website and software to create pdf files. (and I know the basics to get done what I need done with all that software too) We even have a CELL PHONE! (which I always said I would never need but am finding notably helpful as we try to sell our house) I also know how to text message on said cell phone...not very quickly albeit, but I manage. Pretty good, eh?

Well, this last week I found myself gawking in amazement at the internet gadgets I previously possessed no clue about, neither had I heard of. Did you know Etsy has forums? Until last week, I didn't. Did you also know that Etsy has chat rooms? Until last week, I didn't. I entered my first chat room yesterday. I found that these forums and chats actually help connect with other members on Etsy and get my name out there. Its a marketing tool as well as a way to connect with other sellers/businesses and garner ideas, help, and information regarding selling on Etsy and other venues.

The biggest find for me occured this weekend. Twitter. Yup. Twitter. With all my internet knowledge (or lack therof, apparently) I never knew Twitter existed. It is like a blog and a chat and an instant message all rolled into one gadget. So, I am now twittering. Come join me on Twitter to see my life in between blog posts. Its pretty cool, if you ask me.

My brain can handle no more information though. If I cogitate one more iota of new gadgetry this week, I am afraid the poor thing will implode. I am off now to dress and head to the store to pick up some yarn (and hope that my brain can handle the decision of which yarn to purchase.) Have a wonderful day all day long.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Where is Daddy's Opinion?

Last night, we lounged around the dinner table a bit after we finished our fajitas, just chatting and enjoying the quietness of family life when I thought I could use a second opinion on those pictures I took yesterday of my new tea cozy set. I asked James if I could have his opinion on something.

Chloe immediately piped up, "I get it Mama! I get Daddy's 'pinion."

She raced into the living room and started for the stairs. "Where are you going sweetheart?", I asked. "To get Daddy's 'pinion," she promptly replied, heading up the stairs.

I knew if she found it, I would want to have it on camera because who has ever seen someone's opinion before? It truly is a rare thing to catch on film. So, I grabbed my camera and sat at the table...waiting...

Sadly, she called down a few minutes later from the top of the stairs, "I can't find it Mama. I can't find Daddy's 'pinion." I replied, "That's okay, sweetheart. We'll find it later."

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Tad Better Picture

I practiced and I learned a few things about taking better pictures.

ONE: I love my tripod. I don't know why I didn't think of using this thing before. My hands are so shaky and utilizing the tripod means I cannot shake the camera. I put it on the self timer and step back so that I am nowhere near the camera when it snaps the picture. It works.

TWO: Take my pictures outside. It really works. Of course, its quite cold out there this time of year, but I am willing to brave it for a few decent pictures.

Now you would think the lighting would be perfect, right? WRONG! I am STILL not happy. I want pictures worthy of the Front Page! I don't think mine would make it. Here is what I came up with this morning.

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So, I got that teapot cozy set listed in my Esty Shop this morning and I am now off to add the purse from yesterday and work on another couple of purses. Oh....and I had better clean part of the house today or else I might get fired. No, I wouldn't get fired, but I think my dear hubby would like some clean clothes and a hot supper tonight. Fajitas in the crockpot, baby! Ummmm.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Better Photography

I need some lessons or something. I have been struggling with my camera lately and the camera appears to be winning the battle. Why can I not take decent pictures? This is the best I could come up with today.

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Etsy suggests utilizing their 5 picture limit listings, so I tried to get as many different angles of the above placemat purse as I could. I admit that my photography has vastly improved over the past 3 years, but I am still not entirely sastified with the pictures. I think part of the problem with this particular purse is that the design on the purse is sort of "blurry" to begin with. Notice the closeup of the doily. The doily is crystal clear, yet the outlined flower design still appears blurry. Very decieving, isn't it?

This cozy set turned out worse than the purse.

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In one picture my white looks pink and in another it looks blue. Ugggg. I took the pictures in the same location by the same window with the same sun shining in. Maybe its the white background that is throwing it off? I checked my camera for a white balance setting and I can't find it. You think for a $500 camera there would be a white balance setting. Maybe its time to get out the manuel and read up on how to use my camera to the best of its ability.

Anyways, I am off now to get these items listed in my Etsy shop and feed this kid. (who is jumping from couch to couch at the moment) I'll try playing more with the camera this afternoon.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Shifting Business Focus

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I made a major decision regarding my business recently which some of you may already know (if you are part of my pattern testing forum where this decision was announced a couple of weeks ago then this is not news to you.) The decision to quit designing crochet patterns did not come easy to me. Let me explain why I made this decision and then what I plan to do with my future.

Designing crochet patterns to sell takes alot more work than the average crocheter realizes, I believe. First, I can't just sit down and crochet whatever pops into my head. I have to make sure that every new stitch technique is written out and photographed as I come to it. Every row must be written out as I crochet it. (and crossed out as I frog) Once the design is done, the hard part begins. I spend many hours typing up a pattern and resizing it into multiple sizes. Then into testing it must go. I struggle to find adequete, reliable testers. Many times I have recrocheted one of my designs a year or two later only to find major errors in the pattern. ACK! I think about all the customers I have sold that pattern to and not a single one has come to me with questions about that error. This frusterates me to no end because that means I have been selling subpar patterns and that reflects back onto me and me alone. (not my testers)

I found myself with a lack of passion this past year. I would have an idea for a gorgeous dress to crochet for Chloe, but when I contemplated all the work it would take just to get it crocheted and typed up and tested to get the pattern on my website...all desire to make the cute dress flew out the window and I would run to JC Penney's and buy one.

I am not willing to invest the time any more in designing crochet patterns. There are other things, at this point in my life, that I would rather be doing. I want to sew. I want to make doll clothes. I want to play on the floor with Chloe. I want to read some really good books. I want to bake interesting breads. I want to go to the park without feeling guilty that I'm not spending enough time on my business.

I have not designed anything new since the beginning of December. During this time, I have given much thought as to whether or not I would shut down completely. Close the website. Leave the internet. Shut down all money making, period. After spending much time in thought I have decided the answer is no. No, I will not shut down. I like having a business. I like creating things. I like all that part of this business. I just don't have time to continually design new crochet patterns.

So, my focus is shifting a bit. I have been working hard on my Etsy shop this week, filling it up with some delightful items. As my horizons broaden, you will find more handcrafted items in my shop and on my website that reflect the multiple facets of who I am. Right now I am exploring the world of purses and have some wonderful ideas I can't wait to start on. I am also filling up my shop with my signature tea cozies, handmade with love. Some areas worth exploring might include linens, clothes for ladies, items in miniature and wherever my mood takes me.

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This purse is one such example of an area I wish to explore. And if you have never been to my Etsy shop, stop on my and browse a minute. You can find this purse there along with some other handcrafted items I've made recently. And, stay tuned for more! Ideas are falling from the sky like raindrops into this little brain of mine and I am now, once again, excited to have a business.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Cozy in Winter

When the weather cools you down to a chilling 2 degrees, what is there left to do then brew a cup of tea and get cozy? Nothing.

So, that's what I did. I settled in with my cup of Caribe tea and crocheted a few cozies this past weekend. (These will be for sale in my Etsy shop.)

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I started with a customer order. One of my customers bought my dusty pink rose teapot cozy set but lo, and behold, when I looked in my drawer the teapot cozy was missing. Where oh where could it be? Nowhere. It truly was MIA. So...I headed to Joanns to find matching buttons thinking I could simply crochet up a second teapot cozy to match the mug cozies but do you they have the same buttons they sold two years ago? Nope. I found some similar so I then recrocheted the entire set. (my customer was okay with this....I asked before I did it)

I found myself in the mood for more cozies and so I sat and crocheted and sipped tea and crocheted some more.

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I love the purple flower buttons on that set. Its a four cup teapot cozy with one mug cozy.

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I had enough lavander yarn leftover for a second teapot cozy. This too is a 4 cupper.

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And then the teapot cozy I have been planning on crocheting for two years. The navy blue cozy with teapot and teacup buttons. Aren't those buttons adorable? I only hope they have more because I have a little feeling they will be a huge hit.

Since my pictures didn't come out very well, I will be re-photographing some of the cozies today before I list them on Etsy. Now I am off to make some cinnamon bread and then I plan on showing you a couple of dresses I sewed up last night.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Simple Dress Inspiration

Browsing Etsy yesterday I came across some lovely handmade dresses for little girls. Oh, how badly I wanted some for Chloe. Yet, I don't have time right now to get out a whole pattern, cut out all the little bitty pieces and sew it all together. Besides, most of my patterns are too small for her anymore anyways, so that means I would have to buy more in her current size. Uggg! I am just not ready for that yet.

But, while I was drooling over these cute dresses yesterday, I saw one and thought to myself, "I could soooo make that myself." How many times I have said that though...and never to make it? I don't think we need to get into that. *sigh*

But...I KNEW I could. So, at 11:30 last night I hit my scrap tote and began the process of making a "pillowcase dress" with no pattern. I used my memory of the photo in my head as my pattern and I have to say that I am quite pleased with the results. We have an actual dress that Chloe can wear and which fits her perfectly.

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I've got another cut out and ready to sew upstairs. (I plan on finishing it today) All sorts of embellishment ideas are floating through my head. I could really get into this. The dress took me less than an hour to make...including cutting and sewing the pocket. I used a knit fabric so this dress is perfect for winter over a turtle neck. But it can also be worn without a shirt underneath for summertime. It really is the pefect dress for being so easy to make.

I am off to run a couple of errands and then I will be finishing the second dress. Oh...I can hardly wait to show you. Its going to be sooooo very, extremely cute.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Duct Tape, Zip Ties and a Jump Rope

What do those three things have in common? I am so glad you asked. Our story begins just a few, short months ago.

Chloe saw a jump rope at her cousin's house and watched as the two older girls (her cousins) jumped and twirled and just basically used the jump rope for all sorts of playtime activities. She desperately wanted one.

Every time we entered a store after that, I listened to her ask, beg and plead with me to buy her a jump rope. If I even mentioned we were heading to a store she would immediately say, "to get my jump rope."

Chloe is a bit young for a jump rope, right?

Well, after hearing about jump ropes for 2 months, I finally decided that we would get dear Chloe her beloved jump rope for Christmas. I knew I had seen them all year long at the dollar store so it wouldn't be that hard to get one and put it in her stocking.

WRONG!

No one had them any more. NO ONE! We searched and searched for about 2 weeks in every single store we entered. Finally, we found an aerobics jump rope next to the exercise balls in Walmart and after a quick decision on the part of my husband, we walked out of the store with a jump rope for Chloe. A very nice jump rope, I might add.

Now this particular jump rope was originally intended for an adult so we had to make some slight modifications to its size. This is where the zip ties and duct tape came in. And, with a little ingenuity, we now have a jump rope the perfect size for a three year old.

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Mini Quilt

If you haven't thought me crazy before, I guarantee you will now. This past summer I saw the most amazing mini quilt in the bed and breakfast we stayed at. This quilt was the size of a sheet of paper and hung on the wall in a frame. It almost looked as if a regular quilt had been photographed or painted, but no. It was a REAL quilt in miniature.

Well, as many of you know...I have a fascination with all things tiny and I just HAD to try my hand at a mini quilt of my own. Here is what I came up with from my scrap tote.

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And here's the crazy part. I LIKED IT! Yep. I liked it so much I have plans to make more. And eventually, once I muster up the courage, I will attempt some triangles or other quilt squares instead of just a four-patch square.

Just to give you an idea of the size of this quilt, I have a picture of a regular key sitting on the quilt.

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Each teeny square is 1". Sewn together with a 1/4" seam allowance they become a whopping 1 1/2" four-patch square. WOW! That is tiny. And I want to make more!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Bow Tied Square

Square number 8 is complete. Wooo Hooo. Am I on a roll or what? I only have on more square to do and then I will be HALF WAY DONE! (is it sad that I am counting down to half way?)

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I think once I hit halfway, I may have to take a break from this knitting thing. Maybe more crazy squares? or even some...can you guess??? doll clothes! It could be possible that I might even drag out a full blown sewing project. Chloe needs some new dresses for spring. We shall see. We shall see. But for now, I have to decide which square will be number 10.

Since I have been working (or NOT working) on this afghan for 3 years now, here is the book I am using. 60 Easy To Knit Pattern Stitches Combine to Create Sampler Afghans. Have a great day everyone. We are off to run errands a day early.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Bucket Child

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Her fascination with being inside small spaces continues...

Saturday, January 10, 2009

100 Things

This looked fun so I thought I would give it a go.

The rules state: Below are 100 statements. Bold or change the color of the ones you have done.

Started your own blog your sort of reading it
Slept under the stars
Played in a band clarinet
Visited Hawaii
Watched a meteor shower
Given more than you can afford budgeted to charity
Been to Disneyland or Disney World World
Climbed a mountain that really depends on what you consider a mountain
Held a praying mantis
Sang a solo
Had stitches
Watched a lightning storm at sea
Taught yourself an art from scratch
Adopted a child
Had food poisoning
Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
Grown your own vegetables
Seen the Mona Lisa in France almost...the Louvre was closed for a strike the day we were in town
Slept in an overnight train
Had a pillow fight
Hitchhiked
Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
Built a snow fort
Held a lamb
Gone skinny dipping
Run a marathon
Ridden in a gondola in Venice
Seen a total eclipse Lunar only.
Watched a sunrise or sunset
Hit a home run
Been on a cruise Only the lunch-around-the-harbor kind, though.
Seen Niagara Falls in person
Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
Seen an Amish community two
Taught yourself a new language I picked up a bit of Romanian while we were living there but I didn't learn the entire langauge.
Had enough money to be truly satisfied always have, always will
Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
Gone rock climbing does the kind inside a gym count?
Seen Michelangelo’s David
Sung karaoke
Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
Visited Africa
Walked on a beach by moonlight
Been transported in an ambulance
Had your portrait painted
Gone deep sea fishing
Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris So, we didn't quite make it to the top but hey! I've been there, seen it and climbed up it. That should count.
Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
Kissed in the rain
Played in the mud
Gotten a speeding ticket
Been in a movie
Visited the Great Wall of China
Started a business
Taken a martial arts class
Visited Russia
Served at a soup kitchen
Sold Girl Scout Cookies
Gone whale watching We didn't go for the purpose of whale watching. We just happened to see a bunch of whales while on a boat. Close enough?
Got flowers for no reason
Stayed the night in jail
Cried so hard you threw up or threw up so hard I cried?
Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
Bounced a check
Flown in a helicopter So, I didn't fly in it. I sat in it. BUT!!!! I did drive a f-16 fighter jet. That is much cooler than any ole helicopter if you ask me.
Saved a favorite childhood toy
Visited the Lincoln Memorial
Eaten caviar
Pieced a quilt
Stood in Times Square
Toured the Everglades
Been fired from a job I wasn't actually fired. Just layed off.
Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
Broken a bone
Been on a speeding motorcycle
Seen the Grand Canyon in person
Published a book
Visited the Vatican
Bought a brand new car
Walked in Jerusalem
Had your picture in the newspaper

Read the entire Bible
Visited the White House
Killed and prepared an animal for eating
Had chicken pox
Saved someone’s life
Sat on a jury
Met someone famous.
Joined a book club
Lost a loved one
Had a baby
Seen the Alamo in person
Swam in the Great Salt Lake
Been involved in a lawsuit
Owned a cell phone
Been stung by a bee
Read an entire book in one day

If your reading this, consider yourself tagged. Please leave me a comment to let me know I can come read your 100 Things.

The Year of the Finished Afghan

This will be it. This will be the year I finish my knitted afghan. I can feel it in my bones. Yesterday I finally finished square 43 (which is square number 8 for my afghan.) 12 more squares to go! Woo Hoo!

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Boy am I feeling good about this. I can see that I need to work on my bind off edge a little bit but those cables look fantastic for my first attempt. Not anywhere near as hard as I anticipated them being.

I am off now to shine things up for our open house today. (After a second cup of coffee. I am needing it today.) Have a wonderful Saturday.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Save the Handmade

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Save my business...PLEASE!

A new law is being passed the will not allow small businesses like myself to sell any handmade items for children under the age of 12 without certification that states its lead free. (each item needs to be certified for the cost of $500 to $4,000) I can't afford this.

By Feb 10th, all items for children will have to be removed from my website and my etsy shop or they will be viewed as illegal and I will be heftily fined or imprisioned. Can you believe this?????

I am in shock! I am pleading with everyone who reads this... please, please, please...write your congressman or representative. Get the word out there. We don't have much time and this has GOT to change.

For more information, please visit the Handmade Toy Alliance or click on the button or link above.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Cable-de-goop

The decision was made yesterday (in regards to which crafty thing I would endeavor) and I chose BOTH. First I cut a billion squares.

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Once my back protested standing on the hard floor for such a long time, I put the scrap tote back in the closet and brought out the knitting.

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Now this square takes much longer to knit than my heart has desire, yet I press on. It is my very first attempt at knitting cables and, in case you don't know, let me tell you that cables are tricky to master. I believe my fingers are beginnning to catch the knack but they are still a tad slow. One personal preference I found is that the plastic cable stitch holders are better than the metal ones. It seems to hold the yarn in place easier so the stitches are less likely to slip off as I am knitting the other needle. I use the Clover cable stitch holders.

So, now I am off to knit more on this square and hopefully finish it today. And then maybe I will tackle a paint project around the house tonight. We need to make this house shine!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Going Crazy

I am going a little crazy. No...I am not insane (although my mother might disagree with me on that point) nor am I "technically" crazy. (she would probably disagree with that statement as well) The truth of them matter is simply that I don't know what to do with myself while my house sits in pristine order and I am not allowed to mess it up in case a potential buyer wants to see it in...oh...say 15 minutes? (which is not long enough to put anything away.) So, what do I do with myself in the meantime?

Yesterday I took out my scrap tote (which, miraculously, is still bulging even though I made a plethora of doll clothes before Christmas) and began cutting my two and a half inch squares for a scrap quilt. I keep them in a decorative box on a shelf in my craft room for the time when I finally have enough sqaures and enough variety to make a truly scrappy scrap quilt. I got bored with that after about 10 minutes and my eye caught my decorative hat box sitting under my bed. Okay. So I guess my eye didn't "catch" it since it was hidden under the bed. Maybe I was talking about my mind's eye. Yes. That was it. My minds eye caught sight of my decorative hat box sitting under my bed with my teensy tiny scraps in it. (the ones left over after I have cut the two and a half inch squares.)

Now this is where my mother thinks I am crazy. First of all...who, in their right mind, collects two and a half in squares for a quilt? My mother much prefers something at...oh...about five inches or so. I do like my small things, don't I? Anyways, as I was describing my stash to her and informing her that I am uncapable of throwing away even the teensiest scrap, she gave me permission to throw them away. She even said that she had to give herself permission to throw them away. Well, even with my mother's permission, I can't bring myself to throw them away. I paid good money for that fabric and it is so pretty, after all. What can I do?

And then an idea struck right between the ears. Crazy Quilt. I want to make a crazy quilt. Forget this cutting out of endless squares for the day. Let me get a little crazy. Here is what I came up with.

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Total randomness. That is, after all, what a crazy quilt should be. Random. No rhyme or reason. I am not judging color next to color or pattern next to pattern. I look for the size I need and if it fits, I sew. And they turned out quite nice, in my opinion. I went back and made three more last night before bed giving me a total of 7. I need 8 to span the width of my bed and probably 10 to span the length. (which means I have alot more squares to make) I am not looking to finish this quilt this week or anything. The plan is to sew squares as I have the scraps and someday, some year I will have enough to make a king size quilt.

I am off now to play dollhouse with Chloe and clean the bathtub. I have yet to decide what sort of craftiness I shall partake in today. I am torn between cutting more two and a half inch squares (so I can have more teensy scraps to sew crazy quilts) or knitting on my afghan. Hmmm...too many decisions.