Saturday, February 28, 2009

Weather Woes

I had plans to take Moma to pick up her new mattress yesterday and was going to spend today riding with a friend. Neither happened due to the storms we've been getting (of course, it's gorgeous outside now that it's too late to do either). However, I did bring enough home to keep me busy while all pent up indoors:


So, I stole some money from the Stitches piggy bank and bought 2 lbs Romney x roving and a Louet drop spindle from Hello Yarn (Adrian is very nice, by the way!). Great deal (the spidle was 12.00!). Adrian sent a tiny sampler of her gorgeous handdyed roving for practicing on the spindle...

My first attempt on Twisty Lou the spindle. I Navajo plied and it was actually much easier to do on the spindle than on the wheel, I think.

This is my second attempt (using the Romney x) that I made into a tiny swatch to check needle sizes (against, Navajo plied and I think US 8 is the right size):

Here's the start of an actual project:

I plan on spindling the entire 2 lb (am I crazy?). All will be Navajo-plied and it will be put toward a cardi of some sort (or a pullover, just something along those lines). I want to jump on the February Lady Sweater bandwagon, so we'll see.
Not perfect, but improving wiht each try. I'll just say that I'm working toward a "rustic" yarn (sounds better than "I'm just learning and this is the best I can do right now"). I am pretty consistent in the weight of my singles/plying, so that's good. Just need to work a little more at Navajo plying.

1. I'm White, I'm Korean, I am American.?
2. Why do I have wavy frizzy hair and no straight cooperative hair?
3. How is this stimulus bill supposed to work, anyway?
4. Every morning, I put ring on my finger after getting out of the shower.
5. I consider myself lucky because I grew up in the country.
6. One day we’ll see what happens.
7. And as for the weekend, Friday I drove home and did fibery stuff, today I didn't do much, and, tomorrow my plans include Arty's for lunch and then back to college.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Cardmaking

I've been interested in cardmaking for a while now and have finally tried it out (I joined a swap on swap-bot.com)...


This is the first one that I made. I made myself a similar bookmark a few days ago and love it, so used it as inspiration for this card. It's hard to see, but the envelope has a watermarked owl on it. All the cards are blank inside (minus an appropriate stamp) for my pals to send off to someone else.

This one was the second one. Again, watermark is on the envie (it says "adore" and has some fancy swirlies and schwoopies around it). The Love on the ribbon is wire I bent into shape.

The third one. The same adore watermark on this envie as well.

And, the last one. I like this one a lot. There is a flower watermark on the envelope (same as the flowers on the card).

>Cardmaking is really fun (and really messy with all the scraps and supplies!). I'll be making another one, probably Thursday, for Arthur's birthday. It's on the 3rd, but I'll be celebrating with him on Saturday.

>Ugh. I have a midterm tomorrow in Mongol Conquests (difficult class!) and a midterm paper due in 20th century Europe. I'm about halfway through with studying and will write the paper before class tomorrow (it's a night class). No fun!

Blog Award


Lupie nominated me for a blog award! How exciting!

Here are the rules for the nominees:
1. Copy the award to your site.
2. Link to the person from whom you received the award.
3. Nominate 8 other bloggers.
4. Link to those on your blog.
5. Leave a message on the blogs you nominated.

I don't like choosing who should get an award, so if you feel that you are worthy of this, you're nominated by me! Everyone should get an award sometime.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Josie


Picture taken summer 2007.

Name: Josie (Jo-Jo, Jo)
DOB: August 2003
Sex: Female (spayed)
Breed: Jack Russell Terrier Mix
Joined Our Famiy: December 2003

Her Story: Jo came from one of our neighbors. We had gone over to visit and came back with a scrappy little puppy. She was supposed to be my dog, but she instantly bonded with my mom and is her dog 100%. A true terrier, she suffers severe separation anxiety when my mom isn't around!

Josie has had one litter of puppies with Fifa, my brother's Yorkie. They were precious and I fell in love with one little male, named Banjo:


He went to live with a mouse breeder friend in Florida, but sadly got hit by a car a year later and died. I should have kept the little guy.

Josie is hyper, but lazy at the same time. She loves to laze around, but when it's time to play she's all for it. Jo-Jo loves to go for walks and car rides.

You can't say the words "Bye-Bye" or "Cookie" around her without having her jump 4 feet straight into the air. She's crazy, but my mom loves her and I think Jo would die without my mom.


Picture taken summer 2007.

Picture taken winter 2006. Josie was making the sillest face and I had to get a picture of it.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Weekend Recap

I had a good weekend.

Friday, Shawn and I went to the Mall of Georgia to walk around and window shop. I was good and only got two shirts that were on sale at Old Navy (6.00 for two shirts, can't beat that!) and I got a book at Barnes & Noble (Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen). My dad read it several years ago and I've read bits and pieces and loved it. This is the updated version with post-9/11 info. Can't wait to finish up some required class reading so that I can get started on it. Shawn got a book about his computer.

Saturday was knitting group day. I went early and met some of the ladies for lunch at a Thai place in Gainesville. I haven't had Thai in so long and was a wimp and got fried rice. Next time I'll get either the basil noodles or curry. Knitting group was fun, as always. I got a lot done on Sabrina's bag and a good bit done on the sock (though it doesn't really look like it). I left a little early so that I could get back and take Shawn to dinner (he needs to change the brakes on his car, so we're relying on Vinnie (my truck) for now). We had Piazza's, a nice little Italian place off the square. We hadn't been there in over a year and we were due for a visit.

We also sold our last Yorkie pup Saturday! He was the sweetest thing and we would've loved to have kept him, but we really can't/shouldn't. He went to a really nice couple and he took to them immediately. The wife had been begging for a small dog (they already have several large dogs) and husband said no. She said if she can't have a dog, she wants a hamster. If she can't have a hamster, she wants a chinchilla. Husband finally gave in and she got our little Yorkie fella, named Benicio del Torro, Bennie for short. His new mom said that his wardrobe is already growing.

I slept in a tiny bit today, then got up and did one assignment for class. Got cleaned up, went to chow with Shawn, then came back to finish the second assignment. I have been dreading these things for weeks and they turned out to be really easy once I actually sat down to do them. Then I went to Michaels to take advantage of the 10%-off entire purchase coupon I had. I got a bunch of papers, some sale stamps and inks, and other crafty stuff. I worked on some handmade bookmarks for swaps and am now just knitting and web surfing for now.

Hamster Update: We have 6 babies and they are growing so fast! Indie is a good moma and is starting to leave the nest more and more (she enjoyed a run around in her ball yesterday night). 5 babies are dark-eyed (probably golden or sable in color) and one is pink-eyed (will have to see what recessives are there). I do love genetics and it's exciting to have some variety in this litter.

This is my progress on the dress I'm test knitting. I'm about to start the armhole decreases (this is the back of the bodice).


I have about 10 inches finished on Sabrina's bag (please excuse the messy desk!). 5 more inches before it's something other than stockinette.


What I have finished of sock #2. It's growing, however slowly.

Trying to decide who to showcase in tomorrow's post! I think it's going to be a dog...

Friday, February 20, 2009

Color Swap: Round Two

It came today! I gave my pal color choices and she chose olive green, one of my favorites.

I got:

-2 skeins of Araucania Nature Wool in "Forest" - I haven't tried this yarn yet and almost bought some the other day, so this is wonderful! I love Araucania and am excited to try it.
-1 skein of Kraemer Yarns Mauch Chunky in "Oregano" - This is a gorgeous heathered yarn I'm anxious to try.
-1 skein of Sugar'n Cream Twists in green - I love this cotton.
-Maragarita Candy - YUM
-Licorice Altoids - YUM again
-Notecards with my initial on them - I love these!
-A pretty notepad - I use them up so quickly, so this is much needed!
-A frame - A picture of Shawn and me is going in it.
-A bookmark - I love bookmarks! This one is really pretty.
-A Texas piggy bank - Another one to add to the collection! He's so cute!
-Handmade stitchmarkers - I love the bead choice!
-Buttons - Love the shell and the "dream" button is so cute!
-Ladybug tape measure - Adorable!
-SOAK sample - I haven't tried this yet and am eager to see how it works.
-Handknit and felted bag and scissors case - LOVE LOVE LOVE

I am thoroughly spoiled!

The Fill-in

1. Give me sticks and string and I'll give you something useful (or at least pretty).
2. Whenever it rains hard, I just want to stay in pajamas all day and lounge around.
3. I wish I didn't have any assignments due this weekend/coming week.
4. Arroz con pollo was the last thing I ate that was utterly delicious.
5. To live in this world and survive often requires working a job that you don't love.
6. Other than this one, To Knit and Write (link in sidebar) is the last blog I commented on. 7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to relaxing, tomorrow my plans include knitting group, and, Sunday, I want to do a history assignment and SLEEP!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Knit Knit Knit

I have several things on the needles right now, some of which is deadline knitting. I have three things going that need to be finished soon and two others that are in line right behind.

This is one of the two things that aren't on a close deadline (the other being my Slippery Socks):


This is Cookie A.'s BFF Socks in Plymouth Happy Feet. It's going to be a Christmas gift for Michelle. Long deadline, which is nice.

Then we have the deadline-coming-up-soon knitting:

My progress on my cousin Sabrina's Birdie Bag. I have to go 15 inches in stockinette before anything changes. Not exciting, but the color is so pretty and I'm loving my KP needles! As soon as this is finished, I have another to do in blue and a red/blue Spiderman bag. These have no real deadline, but need to be finished asap so that I can get them sent off to Florida. It would be nice to send them to my cousins before the school year is finished with!

Another deadline project (no pic yet) is a cozy for Shawn's new MacBook (I swear, he loves that thing more than he loves me). He wants a black case to keep it from getting scratched up in his bookbag. I'm using Plymouth Encore and will be duplicate stitching a white apple onto it. He wants this now and I want to finish it now because he so rarely asks for my knitting! He's supportive of everything that I do and dabble in, but doesn't really have uses/wants for my stuff. I want to make sure that I get this thing finished and that it's perfect for him.

Then, there's this:

Well, this isn't my work, but I'm making one. This particular dress (and picture) are from Spinster Knits. She is a member of my spinning guild and sells these cute upcycled dresses on her etsy store. The skirts are made from recycled thrift finds or, if it's a commission piece, from fabric the buyer has that they want to use (usually something cherished like a grandmother's party dress, linens from a wedding, etc). I'm test knitting the pattern for her! I'm using Knit Picks CotLin in a navy blue and it's really pretty. The pattern will be featured in Altered Couture Magazine in May and she'll be offering the pattern for sale on her etsy shop soon. How exciting for her!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Babies!


I was thinking that Indie the hamster might be pregnant. She had gained a lot of weight in her middle and had the sunken midline down her belly with the bulges on both sides... a sign of pregnancy. The pet store is good about separating males from females, but Indie was with a group of other hamsters when I bought her and it's always a very good possibility pet store females are bred when they are sold.

We have 8 (I think, just a quick count for now) little ones! I am not thrilled because I'm in a campus apartment where pets aren't allowed (and I'm already sneaking in the 2 rats and Indie), but I can't help but love babies and love breeding. I haven't had a hamster litter in about 5 years now, so it is exciting.

Indie Hamu-Hamu is a good mommy and I hope that everyone does Ok (hamster moms can be a bit unpredictable sometimes). Anyone in Georgia want a hamster?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Smoochy (and a dishcloth)

Picture taken February 2009.

Name: Smoochy Kyle Harper
DOB: June 1, 2008
Sex: Male
Breed: Fancy Rat
Joined our family: June 1, 2008

His Story: Smoochy was born in my rattery to Salty (a pink-eyed white doe) by Squishy this past summer. I bred Squishy so that I would have sons to carry on his line and I kept Smoochy and Crunchy.

I had picked the name Smoochy before he was born. Picking the rat to keep was easy... Smoochy has a smiley face marking on his back! I don't have good pictures of it (he's too active), but it's there.

Smooch is more and more like his father everyday. He is a little more active than Squishy, but has that sweet personality. He is a little daredevil and I call him Evil Knievel because he will make leaps of death to get where he wants (and rats are generally afraid of heights and won't jump at all). He's a snack hound and loves treats. He gets all excited when he hears what he thinks is a food wrapper (anything that crinkles).

Smoochy will be bred to a quality female this fall/winter to carry on the line. His son will be named Kissy.


Picture taken February 2009.
Picture taken Summer 2008. Smoochy was about 6 weeks old in this picture.


Here's a dishcloth I made yesterday for the RAK in Portugal:

Sunday, February 15, 2009

FO!


I ended up holding the yarn doubled for the top part and did a garter stitch edge. Doing it like that created a baggy top, which I used to make a ruffled edge when I sewed in the lining (the fabric was a swap extra someone sent me last year). I like the ruffly top. The strap is a crochet chain with the yarn held doubled, then braided. The top pictures are of the bag with Sal (the computer) in it.
I plan on adding some sort of closure... I'm thinking just some velcro at the top. The strap holds well enough for now, but I'll likely change it out for something different soon.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Love Day

I had a great Valentine's Day.

It started with getting up early and having some of the nice ladies from my knitting group picking me up (with wheel and knitting in tow) to go to the spinning guild meeting.

I started spinning some of the Zeilinger wool I got from SAFF:


I watched another member Navajo-ply today (Thanks, Tammy! Your plying is gorgeous!) and think I'll give it another try with this yarn. I'm spinning it pretty thin and it will be a nice sock yarn when I'm finished (hopefully!).

I also worked more on the Sal bag:
I joined the guild today and paid my dues. I really love all this fiber friendliness and wish that I had gotten involved earlier. I am going to try to schedule days off from work to be able to come to meetings after I graduate.

I bought some lampwork buttons from a guild member and some goats milk soap:

I am going on a fiber trip in March! I'm beyond excited... a good group of us are spending the weekend in a bed & breakfast in the mountains. The whole place is reserved for us and we'll just be relaxing and working on whatever we brought to do. Some of the wonderful ladies I'm going with went before and took a weaving class and loved the place. They say that the food alone is worth the cost (which is a really great deal).

Shawn and I went to Dawsonville tonight for dinner and a movie. Dinner didn't go quite as planned (of course, everywhere was packed), so we decided to eat something quick and simple and see a movie for tonight (a nice lunch/dinner for tomorrow). We ate Chic-fil-a (and got serenaded by a youth quartet that was there) and saw Taken. It was pretty good, but no real story to it (ex-government agent's daughter gets kidnapped, he goes to save her). I think that's to be expected in today's movies, though... they seem to fill in plot gaps/lack of story with action scenes.

Shawn made me this sweet card:

It has a sweet E.E. Cummings poem in it and Yobo, Sahrahng Heh (Honey, I love you) in Korean.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Prairie Dusk


Finished! It's drying from a bath as I type this.
The top picture is 109 yards of a heavy worsted and the bottom is 123 yards of light worsted-worsted.
Gorgeous! Now, what to do with it?

TGIF

I am so glad that it's Friday. It seems that Monday to Wednesday lasted forever.

Yesterday, Shawn and I decided to go out and get his computer. He couldn't wait to Sunday and I am bad about giving gifts early (I get so excited about them). A trip to Alpharetta (stopping by Cast-on Cottage first for a look around and the yarn for my cousins' bags) and we got his new baby (also named Sal; I think he should've named it after ME!) and the sales guy at the Apple store was hilarious. It was as if he were delivering a baby, he was so excited and told us about the "new Apple smell" and that Shawn will never forget the first time he turns it on. Too funny how some people are about computers and such. Me, I'm a PC girl myself.

I got in my Knit Picks order today! They were really quick this time.

This is the book and Hippy the Hippo (notions pouch). I love both. The book is amazing and will be a great resource (wearable patterns and all the right info for modding patterns and making the perfect fit). I also got in the needles and cables, but those aren't nearly as exciting, so aren't getting a pic on the blog.

This is the beginnings of the bag for Sabrina:

It's really a lovely shade of pink in real life. The perfect pink, I think. I used to get better pics in natural light, but lately it seems to just darken/wash out all the colors.

1. It seems like sometimes I'm the only one with any sense in my Juvenile Justice class (I'll spare the details, but we'll just say that the other students can be infuriating at times!).
2. Shawn, could you take your stuff to your dorm and not leave them here when you're done, please?
3. If I thought you needed help, I'd help you!
4. Gideon, a little old English man is what I think of most when I think of you. (Gideon is my Daschund/Chihuahua with a stiff upper lip).
5. To me, Valentine's Day means a day for letting those that you love know you feel that way about them.
6. God and family give me strength.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to spinning the rest of the bamboo and plying it, tomorrow my plans include my first spinning guild meeting, and, Sunday, I want to have a wonderful Valentine's Day date with Shawn!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Progress On Sal's Bag

This is what I have finished so far. The color is a lot more vibrant in real life. I love how the color gradually changes. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to get all the colors in this bag before it got too tall (the color runs are pretty long), but I think I'll have no problems with that now. I am going to use up all the yarn for this project (strap, pockets if necessary) because I hate having tiny amounts left over from a project that aren't enough to add to Scrappy (the rug I'm making for Arthur and Michelle).

I won't be felting this. I like the look of knitted fabric, so will just be lining it.

I've been (barely) working on the second Slippery Sock and am about halfway through the first repeat on the leg. It's just not that fun to knit (interesting because of the complex charts, but not fun at all). I'll be glad when it's finished.

I'm going to make some of my cousins felted bags as a little gift... Sabrina and Alexis (10 and 8) are getting A Little Bird Told Me bags (pink for Sabrina, blue for Lexi) and Nicholas (5) is getting a Mochi Mochi bag that is Spiderman themed (red and blue). I really wanted to make them cute scarves, but they live in Florida and are too young to really care for summery fashion-statement scarves!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

They're Here!

My Knit Picks order arrived today! It was like Christmas all over again since I got the KP order, a RAK crochet magazine, the BSJ pattern I ordered last week, and I got some unexpected scholarship money!

I love love love my Knit Picks Options set! It's amazing. Gorgeous (as usual with Harmony needles) and I'm happy enough just looking at them. I can't wait to start using them.

I will be casting on for my Fetching mitts soon since I now have the right sized dpns for them. It's getting warmer now, but I'm sure there will be another cold day sometime and, if not, I'll just wear them this fall!

I placed another KP order today (Ok, I'm spoiling myself, but it's the last fibery purchase until Stitches South in April). I ordered the US 15 Harmony tips for the circular set (for bulky yarn felting projects), some dpns I was lacking (2, 7, 9), the Custom Knits book by Wendy Bernard (books are 40% off until Friday), the cutest hippo zippered notions pouch thing (this was a real splurge since I don't really need it, just wanted it), and 3 cables for the circ set I don't have (40", 47", 60").

This weekend is love day weekend! Shawn and I don't usually do much for Valentine's Day, and this year isn't too different. We're celebrating Sunday since he has a closed weekend with the school Friday/Saturday (it's the Sweetheart Review and Command Inspection). We plan on making it date day and will be going out to the Alpharetta area for lunch at The Flying Biscuit (where I ate Sunday with the knitting group), the mall and Barnes & Noble, then a nice dinner somewhere (Japanese?). He already gave me my gift, Sal the computer, but he's doing the card thing also. I made his card yesterday and I'm buying his gift Sunday (I'm getting him the Macbook computer he's been drooling over (trust me, if it weren't for this unexpected money, he'd be getting my love and affection and that's it)).

Monday, February 9, 2009

Knitting Updates

This is the second cloth for the RAK in Portugal. I love this one.



I started the computer bag yesterday while we were out to the weaving open house. I'm using handspun domestic wool and the handspun Atticus batt, both from SAFF. I cast on what I thought was a good number (using Judy's Magic Cast-On) and went from there. I have a bit more than this finished now and I'm loving the color changes. I'll decided when I finish it if I'll be felting it like I had originally planned, or just going with lining it.

I forgot to mention in yesterday's post about the door prizes at the open house! There was a table full of prizes, a pile of handwoven/crocheted blankets, and a rack with scarves, a bag, and some other things. I won and chose this handdyed silk scarf. I think I'll be using it to line a fancy bag or something and will be keeping some to use while spinning bamboo (to hold on my lap so I don't get covered in the fiber!).


These are crocheted cubes I made from scrap wool. They'll get thrown in the wash to felt down (I understuffed them with the fiber fill stuff) and will become dog toys. I was going with the free download pattern from Interweave Crochet, but ended up modding it to make it easier and less picking up of stitches. Very simple and very quick.


A drop spindle! One of the wonderful ladies in my knitting group brought me one of her spindles to play with this week. I've never used one and was always intimidated by them. She had given me some scrap fiber to work with, but it was webbed pretty heavily and I was having a hard time with the drafting. I got out some of the fiber from SAFF (the stuff I bought 3 lb of in hopes of spinning enough for the Tree Jacket) and it went much better. I am not great at it, but have the basic concept down and am getting better. This is what I had after my first little bit:


Saturday, I am going with my fiber friends to a spinning guild meeting. I haven't been to one yet and it sounds like a lot of fun. I'm kind of intimidated by the skill these ladies have, but they are all so warm and inviting I think I really have nothing to worry about.

Rowdy Romance


Picture taken summer 2007.

Name: Rowdy Romance, "Rowdy" or "Ro"
DOB: 2000
Sex: Gelding (castrated male)
Breed: Quarter Horse
Joined our family: 2003

His Story: I've had many horses in my life and used to ride almost daily (before college!). The neighbor across the street was a horse trader and most of my horses came from her. My mom went over on our horses for a visit and Cowboy, another trader, was there was a 3 yo stud colt for sale. It was my Rowdy. He was broke enough to run down the road wildly and without control (Cowboy did road racing) and that was it. I rode him around and was in love! My mom went across the street for the checkbook. We got Rowdy for 400.00.

I had originally named him Cowboy, but it didn't suit him. So, Rowdy Romance it was. I should have named him La-Z Boy or Recliner, he's so docile. Even as a young stud, it was hardly any work at all to fully break him and I could soon ride him with other horses (mares in season included). He was, and still is, goofy and does silly things like climbing over fallen trees rather than just hopping over like "normal" horses, but I love this horse. He was the first one that I really broke myself; I had only even finished off green horses before this.

Ro was bred to my dad's mare, Winchester, then cut (castrated). I have the resulting baby, my little mare, Acorn (you'll meet her in another post).

Rowdy is sweet on the ground, but does like to lick up an attitude at times, but never in the saddle. He's a total sweetie when we ride. We went on a great trail ride in one of the state parks the beginning of January and we had a blast. He loved it. I can't wait to be graduated and back home to ride more often. He's a dream when it comes to loading, standing for the farrier (he will play little tricks on me when I trim his hooves, but it's all games), and it wonderful with new riders/children.

The whole gang in summer 2007. Rowdy and Moses (the mule) up front, Fame (Moses' mom) has her head to Rowdy's right, Winchester is peeking over Ro's hindquarters, and Acorn is squeezing her way between Ro and Moses. Moses and Fame have new homes now and we only have the family (Ro, Winchester, and Acorn).


Picture taken fall 2008. Rowdy in the pasture (his favorite place to stand and sleep).

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Chattahoochee Handweavers Open House (Photo Heavy!)

Today was the Chattahoochee Handweavers Open House in Atlanta. My knitting group went and had a great time. Most of us dabble in multiple fiber crafts and are knitters, crocheters, weavers, and spinners.

The talent on display was amazing. There were demonstrations and we could try out the different looms and such.
Inkle loom:

Kumihimo braiding (we're trying to get a class together for our group to learn this):
Bead Weaving:
Basketweaving:


Floor loom weaving:


Rigid Heddle Loom Weaving:
Tapestry Weaving:


Card Weaving:

After all this we went to eat at a wonderful little place called The Flying Biscuit. They serve excellent cathead biscuits and my organic oatmeal pancakes were delicious! They have the funkiest combinations, like shrimp grits (I hear it's really good).

I am taking the beginners card weaving class when they have it next (summer or fall). It's so interesting and creates gorgeous stuff. I want to start weaving my own dog leashes and horse halters.

I finished the second RAK dishcloth, have started on my felted computer bag, and am well on my way into the leg of the second Slippery sock. Those pics and info will be in another post.