Friday, September 29, 2006

The Ruins

I am currently reading this book called The Ruins, by Scott Smith. I use the Miami-Dade Public Library system's online request program, and stumbled across this book during one of my searches. Gone are the lazy days of perusing the shelves in an air-conditioned musty smelling library...ahhhhh, heaven...Now it's get in, get out before Eli starts accumulating dirty looks from the other patrons. He's really not that big of a problem, but he does get excited and starts running around like any 18 month old will do :) Anyway, I found this book and it piqued my interest, so I ordered it. It's not my typical read, but every once in awhile, you need to go outside of your normal interests, to make sure you're not missing anything really good! I typically stick to Historical Fiction- Medeival, Rennaisance, Victorian era, Fantasy- The Mists of Avalon, anything about the Aurthurian Legend or Guinevere in particular, Alice in Wonderland (of course), Robin Hobb's Liveship Traders series, and I could go on and on and on...




Well, this book takes place in present day, in a small village outside of Cancun. The main characters are early 20 something travelers, who wind up going off in search off one of their friends who took off to an archeological dig site. When they get there, the trouble begins. As you can see, not my usual read. I'm about half way through it and I can't make up my mind about it. The lurking evil turns out to be something totally stupid, yet I am compelled to keep reading it. I think I'm drawn to the group dynamics of the story, that's about it. The book has received mixed reviews, and I can totally see why!

Besides my unnatural addiction to reading this book, I have been working hard on my super secret project (about a quarter of the way done) and I've been shopping, shopping, shopping for my Sock-ret Pal. I've decided to do themed packages, which is making it more interesting for me to put together. I'm enjoying the planning involved with putting together the package. I'm finding it sooooo hard not to shop for myself though!!

Currently Reading: The Ruins by Scott Smith (sorry to be redundant here)

In the DVD Player: Marty- 1955- starring Ernest Borgnine

On the Needles: The usual suspects...no new projects yet! I'd like to start the socks for my Pal, but I'm still waiting on her questionaire...*sound of my fingers tapping* *grin*

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Thoughts

Well, today has been one of those days that makes it really clear why my mom always valued Mother's Day so much! Whew, this is a tough job some days- I think I developed a twitch in my left eye and possibly sprouted a few grey hairs!! All I have to say is, "mom, you're a saint!" *grin*...and I'm so sorry for all the trouble I caused you!! ;)

To get us out of the house, I packed up all of Eli's gear and we headed over to my friend Hilary's house. We had a nice time. How can you not have a good time when there's Krispy Kreme involved! Hilary was also kind enough to unload some of her unwanted fabric- woo-hoo!!! She gifted me with some beautiful upholstery fabric still on the bolts and a few miscellaneous remnants. I plan on constructing a few corsets and bags out of it. *doing the happy dance* I'll take some pics tomorrow and throw them up on the post.

But I digress. Last night I received such a nice email from my Sock-ret Pal Spoiler, AKA Charlotte :) It was really nice to hear from her and I'm looking forward to the months ahead of getting to know her better. She says that we seem to have alot in common, which is purty darn cool. Three cheers to the Sock-ret Pals hostesses, Dani and Rachel, for a good match!

Tonight is the season premier of Smallville, so I think I'm going to go and see about regaining some of the sanity that I lost today, along with my sense of humor. I would like to finish the day off on a good note with my boy. Once that is accomplished, I can veg out on the couch in front of the devil box with my knitting. Oh glorious glorious knitting...*sigh* What would I ever do without it?

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Sock-ret Pal Questionaire

The Basics:
How long have you been knitting? I learned how to knit when I was 7, but have been seriously knitting for about a year.
Do you consider yourself a beginner sock knitter, intermediate, or could you do this in your sleep? I would consider myself an intermediate sock knitter.

The Measurements:
Shoe Size: 9
Foot Circumference (around ball of foot) : 8 inches

Fiber Related Favorites:
What colors do you love? I love purples, pinks, green, red, blue, the colors of autumn- bright happy colors :)
Do you prefer solids or variegated? I like both. It depends on the project and if I want the stitch definition to show.
What fibers do you most like to knit with? I loooovvve wool, especially Superwash. I love alpaca, silk, basically any natural fiber.
Who are your favorite yarn vendors? Lorna's Laces, Blue Moon Fiber Arts- Socks That Rock, Mountain Colors- Bearfoot, Cherry Tree Hill, Art Yarns
What projects do you most enjoy knitting? Socks, of course! I also love working on shawls, dolls, bags, mittens and hats, even though I can't wear half of these things in Miami!!

Fiber Related Dislikes:
What fibers can you not stand to knit with? Wear? I'm really not a big fan of synthetics. I do appreciate a really cool skein of sparkly fuzzy furry yarn every once in awhile, but the squeek of acrylic on needles makes me cringe.
What colors would you never wear? I don't wear grey or very many pastels. I'm a color lover- I love color, there, I said it! :)

The Tools:
Plastic or metal? Wood or bamboo? I prefer to knit on bamboo, depending on the yarn. I'm sure I would love wooden needles, I just have never tried them.
Circs or straights? Love em both!
DPN's or Magic Loop? DPN's. I've never tried Magic Loop.
Are there any knitting accessories that you don't have in your collection but would like? I don't have any really good stitch markers. Mine are plastic and junky. I'm also trying to expand my circ collection. Would also love to try bamboo yarn.

The Extras:
Do you have a wishlist? Yup. It's on my page.
Do you like sweet, sour, or salty, or all of the above? All of the above. I'm not a big fan of chocolate or candy, though.
Do you have any allergies? Nope.
Favorite scents? Scents you can't stand? My favorite scent is Nag Champa. Second would be lavender. I don't care for florals.
Do you collect anything? yarn :)
When is your birthday? January 25th.
Do you spin? Dye your own yarn? Yes to both. I am learning to spin on a drop spindle. I dye my own yarn, using acid dyes.
Favorite author/band/vacation spot? Author: Sharon Kay Penman. Band: Ani Difranco. Vacation spot: Holland
Anything else to let your Pal know you better? I'm 32 and stay at home right now with my 18 month old son, Eli- He's a very cool little guy! I am a college graduate, with a degree in Human Development from Eckerd College, but have been doing custom sewing work and hand dyeing yarn and fiber for sale through the internet. I am trying to stay at home with Eli for as long as I can and this work is allowing me to do so. Some of my interests: I am an avid reader, I enjoy spending time with my family in the Smoky Mountains in Tennessee, I love learning different forms of fiber arts, spinning, quilting, embroidery and beadwork. I'm fascinated with anything Medeival, mesmerized by William Morris and the Arts and Crafts Movement, and dare I say it...I love garden gnomes....hehehe! I consider myself Pagan, but I approach it as a way of life rather than a religion-I see it more as a worldview. I'm too busy to be religious right now!! An 18 month old will do that to you. If I were to put myself in any one category, it would be hard to do, because I have walked many different paths in my life. Most people would consider me to be a hippie-dippie sort, and I'm OK with that. I would choose tie-dye over a business suit any day, dreadlocks over a perm, flip-flops/sandals over close-toed shoes...I think you must be getting what I'm trying to say :) I value authenticity, originality, diversity and free-thinking. I welcome you to become a part of my life for a few months or longer if you would like! I am excited to be a part of this group and am hoping to form some great friendships from it. Thanks for taking the time to read this!

Monday, September 25, 2006

Superdome

Ahhh...what a good time I had last night. Rusted Root was great, even though they did seem a bit tired and uninspired. I think it's getting towards the end of their tour and they're probably ready to go home and sit on the couch for awhile, know what I mean? I didn't get home until the wee hours of the morning, so I've been a bit drained myself today. My child decided to cut me a break and not wake up til 10. Woo-hoo! Yay Eli!

The Sock-ret Pal Swap is almost underway and I'm getting so excited!! I can't wait to find out who I have- It's almost like a blind date- haha! I guess I need to fill out the questionaire and post it within the next few days.

I've been busy working on my super secret project and am kind of bummed that I can't post pictures of it- it is turning out quite lovely. I think I'll take some pictures of completed projects and post them, so at least it looks like I'm doing something! :) A post just isn't a post without pictures to accompany it.

Well, it's time to settle in for the night, pick up my knitting and ready myself to watch the New Orleans Saints game, the first home game they've played since before Hurricane Katrina- Dec. 26, 2004 was the last game played there. I don't think there's going to be a dry eye in the Superdome tonight. I'm not really a football fan, but I spent those few days last year glued to my TV after Katrina rolled through. I feel compelled to watch.


Sunday, September 24, 2006

Sunday Stuff

It's Sunday and my fingernails are purple. I've been dyeing yarn all day long, 10 skeins to be exact. Well, I did four yesterday, five today and Jack helped with the last one. I skeined up the four from yesterday, threw them in a bush out front and took a picture. (trying to be all professional with my photos!!) haha!




I'm contemplating going to see Rusted Root tonight. I can't seem to make up my mind. I would love to see them, but it's Sunday and I've got the whole lazyness vibe going on, not to mention it's a 45 minute drive both ways. Do I reeeaally want to take a shower and stand around with a bunch of strangers listening to a really great band? One of my top 3 bands? Of course I do!
Must go shower :)

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Poolhall Blues

It's Thursday morning and I'm tired. Last night was a Mommie's Night Out at this poolhall called Gatsby's. I went there with the assumption that it would be your everyday run-of-the-mill establishment, and boy, was I way off the mark. This place was swanky- couches, lamps, mahogany bars, Tuscan colored walls and...sushi! Who would have thought to combine those two elements! I'm used to sportsbar-like places, with posters of Nascar drivers, broken down video machines in the corner, scruffy barflys and waitresses named Tina and Roxie...I had a good time with the company I was with, but other than that, this place was not my cup of tea. Not to say that I don't appreciate "the finer" things in life, I do, I'm just not into people who go out of their way to impress other people with the material things that they've accumulated. Plastic people and their shrines to themselves tend to annoy me. I would have been much more at home at a locals only spot that served chicken wings and pitchers of beer. It's kind of nice to be reminded of who you are every once in awhile. Going out of your comfort zone tends to do that.




Yesterday I received my last eagerly awaited package in the mail. I ordered some Lorna's Laces Shepard Sport sockyarn for a pair of socks that I plan on making for Jack. The colorway is very nice. It's called Black Watch. Nice cool shades.

Currently Reading: From Sea to Shining Sea by Alexander Thom

In the DVD Player: Jenifer.
This is a horror genre short story film directed by Dario Argento, out of the Masters of Horror series. I'm not really into horror, but Jack said that I just may like it, so I'm giving it a shot.

On the Needles: Beaded Silk Scarf, my super secret project, Watercolor socks, Jack's socks

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Hooray for things in baskets!

Yesterday, the yarn fairy paid a visit to my house. She looked surprisingly like the postman *grin* Well, OK, so it wasn't the yarn fairy, but it was pretty darn close. My mom sent me a care package filled with beautiful yarn that she found on sale in Tennessee. She knows how I'm a natural fiber freak, so she wasn't sure if I'd like it or not because of it's fiber content, but it's gorgeous! Blues and purples, soft and fringy...ah, the possibilities... I'm thinking about making a really cool "art" shawl, you know with all kinds of textures and colors in it? I just love possibility, don't you?




I also received this lovely lovely Swish Superwash from Knit Picks, which is going to be used for my super secret project, to be revealed after the recipient of said project receives it. Ooooo, a mystery! I started working on it last night and I am in love with this yarn. It is soooo soft and warm. The color is so vibrant and alive. Poor poor Watercolor socks...you never stood a chance.




The last item in the basket...Eli!! As we were making dinner last night, I turned around and there he was sitting in the middle of the kitchen floor in a blue organizer basket with a big ol' grin on his face! He was so proud of himself! Couldn't resist taking a picture. Isn't he a handsome little devil?


Monday, September 18, 2006

Progress Report

I really don't have much to say- I just felt like posting a picture of my Watercolor socks in progress. I'm using the double moss stitch and it's creating some awesome texture. It's so funny, because I'm not really a "pastel" person, so I have to put the sock down and walk across the room to look at it to convince myself that I still like what I'm working on! For some reason, the colors look better to me from far away. Weird. Thank the gods that they'll end up on my feet and not on my hands! Now, if I were only taller....*grin* This pair of socks was actually something that I started while waiting on more yarn to arrive in the mail, which of course has yet to appear, grrrr.....I've got a few Yule/Christmas projects I reeeeeally need to get started on so that I don't end up freaking out sometime in December!!




Oh, and I must give credit to the background fabric in the photo- It's actually a bag that my brother's Fiance, Windy, made that came with a tissue holder and glass case. Thanks again mama!

Currently Reading: From Sea to Shining Sea by James Alexander Thom
So far, it's a pretty good read. I've read another book by him, Follow the River, which was an incredible story based on the life of Mary Ingles. From Sea to Shining Sea, takes place during the American Revolution, and is interesting to me because I shockingly don't know much about how our country was born...tsk, tsk!

In the DVD Player: The Hound of Baskervilles. (1959) Ahhh, there's something to be said for an old kitschy Sherlock Holmes movie. Recommended by Jack, of course!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Bags, Books and Scarves, Oh My!

It's Sunday morning and I'm in a really freakin good mood today :) I've had a very productive morning, finishing up some tarot bags I've been working on. I love this one. It's called Lady of the Flame, the name coming from the flame she is holding in the palm of her hand. I wish I knew the actual artists name. My guess would be John William Waterhouse, which happens to be my all-time favorite artist. I l-l-love his work. The link above (I'm so proud that I created my first link!) has some great information on his work and many pictures of his paintings.




I've also spent the morning looking through some books that I received in the mail yesterday from Amazon: Twisted Sisters Sock Workbook, which totally kicks ass. There is soooo much great information in it about colorwork, dyeing techniques, spinning and sock-making. I would recommend it for the sheer fact alone of all the beautiful, inspiring color photos. I also picked up Spinning Designer Yarns by Diane Varney and The Whole Craft of Spinning by Carol Kroll. I've been obsessed with the Twisted Sisters though and haven't had a chance to dive into these other two yet.




Last night, we had a huge thunderstorm roll through, so Jack and I watched some old British sitcoms on the telly and knit. He's doing great with his first project- so great, he wants to keep it for himself now...grrrr... *grin* It really is turning out to be quite a cool scarf. I've been progressing slowly on my Watercolor socks. I really like how they're turning out. My camera died or I'd post a picture for you...they do exist though, really, they do! I also signed up for the Sockret Pal yesterday and am really looking forward to that getting started. The hostesses are super cool and the group is small, so it should be a blast! I'm off to work on my socks. Must finish them before Sockret Pal gets underway.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Silly Surveyness

Thought I would include a silly survey. Here goes...

1) You are going to get a free tattoo. What is it and where is it placed?
I would get a quartersleeve starting at my right shoulder depicting a tribute to the Celtic Goddesses.

2) You are being forced to listen to one song over and over, as a form of torture, ad infinitum. What song is it?
Anything by Ace of Base :)

3) You get to choose one book as the best book ever written. What book do you choose?
Alice in Wonderland

4) You get to choose one movie as the best movie ever. What movie do you choose?
The Dark Crystal

5) You have a time machine that will take you backwards to any period in time. What time period do you choose and why?
Victorian England- I woud looooove to get my hands on some of those traditionally made corsets!

6) Skydiving or deep sea diving?
Skydiving, definitely.

7) You get to return to the past and have a sexual encounter with a rockstar that is no longer alive. Who would it be?
Jim Morrison

8) You get to be a contestant on a gameshow, airing today or in the past. Which one is it?
Let's Make a Deal

9) You are given $1 million dollars, but must give it all to charity. Which one is it?
Wolfson's Childrens Hospital- they saved my son's life.

10) You can have $100 million dollars tax free, but if you take it, you will die at the age of fifty. Do you take it?
Yes, all the money would go to my son. He would be out of high school by then. How do you know you would make it to 50 anyway, without the money?

Thursday, September 14, 2006

A Good Day to Dye

Yippee!! Hoo-ray!! My dyes are here! *big grin* I ordered a whole bunch of Jacquard acid dye, 12 eight oz. jars to be exact, and they arrived on my doorstep last night from Dharma Trading Co. Needless to say, I grabbed the only dyeable fiber in the house right now and did some test runs on two colors, Salmon and Periwinkle. I'm going to handpaint the Kona Superwash that is shown in the picture, sometime tomorrow. Eli insisted on helping out with the stacking for the photo, so I just had to oblige. Hey, don't knock child labor! Kidding, of course! ...or am I?




Here's a few pictures I took during the whole process. I can't wait for my BIG order of yarn and fiber to show up, so I can dye the crap out of everything! Muaahahaha... *evil laughter*





I really like the way the purple skein turned out, of course, but the jury is still out on good ol' Salmon...not quite sure what to make of the yarn in all it's orange gloriousness...the color makes me think of construction cones and those hideous bright orange knit hats that hunters wear in the winter. Lovely...

On another note, I just signed up for the Secret Pal 9 and can I just tell you that I CANNOT wait to start! I've had a great time going down the Participant's List, checking out who is signed up for this one. There's quite an array of individuals, from all walks of life. It's such a cool idea. This is my first go at something like this, so I am eagerly awaiting the match-up.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Celebrity Look-alike...hmmm...


Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Perception

I had quite an interesting conversation with my mom yesterday about perception. We discussed how two people can perceive an object/event/etc. in two totally different ways, which begs us to ask the question about what is really the truth? If I see something that is the color green and she sees something the color green, are we seeing it the same way? Are we only semi perceiving it the same way because that is what we were told "green" is? Using the example of green, is what she used, but that can translate into so many bigger events, relationships, etc. The biggest one at the moment is 9/11. I truly feel for the loss and suffering that the families and us as a nation went through, but I refuse to perceive the event the way the media and the government portrayed it. I do not believe in much of what was spoon-fed to us in those first few weeks. I couldn't watch any of the broadcasts yesterday for this reason. I'm so tired of memorializing death and destruction. I honor all of the lives that were lost that day, but I choose to celebrate events that showcase goodness, peace and respect for life. We can't ignore the terrible tragedy of that day, it affected all of us, but I do believe it's time to start looking at the good in people again.

Why can't we all just get along?

Monday, September 11, 2006

Little Known Fact: Spiders Can Knit

Well, I just gotta say how proud I am of my man! Last night, in between watching football and Flavor of Love, I started teaching Jack/AKA Spider, how to knit! He has really picked up the basics quickly and just looks so damn sexy doing it!! The best part of it all, is that I'll be on the receiving end of his finished project, which is going to be a scrumpteous purple and dark blue velour scarf. I'm so excited to know that I'm being gifted with something handmade- that is one of the best things in life! In helping him, I was surprised that I liked the yarn, because unfortunately, I am a natural fiber yarn snob...I think I just may need to reconsider that opinion though...


While he was working on that, I pulled out a ball of merino sockyarn that I had hand dyed a few months ago. I used the hot pour method, which means I basically threw the yarn in a pot with a few pastel colored acid dyes, some vinegar and wala! Cotton Candy "watercolor" yarn! I'm dying (no pun intended) to see how this pair of socks turns out.



I also finished one of my custom tarot card bags today. This one has the gypsy girl playing a tambourine on it. I'm quite happy with the results. I've neglected my sewing for a few weeks and it's time to get back to work.



This is another custom bag that I made for a special someone out in California. I hope she's enjoying it!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Sunday, blessed Sunday

It's Sunday morning and I've just sent the boys to the store for the paper...silence...it's so golden. Well, I do have Wallace and Gromit's Curse of the Were-Rabbit playing on my devilbox... That movie is my one exception to the Silence is Golden Rule! It's incredible the work that went into that film, five years in the making. Stop animation rules! But I digress..

It's been a few days since my last post and in that time, I've made some progress on my beaded scarf. It's been so much fun to make so far. I'm almost halfway done and have gone through about 350 beads. I can't decide if this one will be a keeper or a Christmas gift. Hmmm... I don't think I'll know until I'm done! I'm trying to be unselfish and share with my friends and family, but my array of handknit garments in my own wardrobe still leaves something to be desired. I learned how to knit when I was seven from my mom and grandmother, but the skill lay dormant for 20 + years until I chanced upon it a year ago. I'm now trying to make up for lost time and fill my closets!Another project that I was working on, the Black Purl socks, using Lorna's Laces Shepard Sock, is done!! Woo-hoo!! I l-l-love them! This is officially my third pair of completed socks and I am just so happy I could pee!! Now, I need a cold Arctic breeze to blow through Miami, so that I may start wearing these fabulous creations! What do you think my chances are of that happening? Hmmm, slim to none. That's what I thought.