Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Blah-day, blah-day

Still no knitting or other fun pursuits to share... not for lack of desire, but with allergies hitting me hard I've had little energy and way too much to do for work. I did score some great vintage (aka thrift store) linens over the weekend though... ever since reading about Artsy-Crafty Babe's penchant for linens from thrift stores, I keep my eyes open. And when there was a quilt backed with a 'vintage' sheet on Old Red Barn Co, it was an ah-ha of brillance.

Soon after I found all these: The Laura Ashley Roses set, yep - the whole set, will be GREAT for a quilt back (I'm thinking to go with a denim front made from old, worn jeans)... and also the green duvet cover (great yardage!). The neutral swirls will probably be bag linings, as will the others (the pink & white is a valance and the turquoise is a pillow sham).

I have had a "secret" knitting project - something I'm test knitting so nothing to share. What I can share is that I was a total idiot... I was determined to finish it over the weekend so I could get on to my own projects (and this is a small little thing to test). So I'm knitting away (it is on small needles), row after row (and thin yarn). I finally get to the last section and my stitches are WAY off. At first I think 'wow, glad I found this mistake' - which of course means that the mistake is in the pattern... right? can you guess where this is headed??? No, the pattern was fine... I had just completely skipped a small, but oh-so-important section. sigh... frogged back to that point and will resume my testing next weekend. Kinda made me feel like the Yarn Harlot! and incredibly grateful that my screw up was on a much smaller item...

Happy Everything!
- JavaNut

Bailey says: Momma, wouldn't you rather go play frisbee than play on the computer?
Jul 28 2008-Day210
It's so nice to be adored, but it really does interfere with my typing...

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Thankful Thursday...

Whoo-hoo... I remembered to be thankful on Thursday! Which is a distressing realization that I need to remember. Not to get preachy, but my outlook on everything would certainly be better if I remembered to be more thankful in general. or didn't need to 'remember'... but just WAS more thankful. right?

Today... I'm thankful:
- that I can work from home tomorrow
- that Bailey didn't get into mischief when I left him alone for 3 long days in a row.
- that someone (even if he has 4 legs) is excited to see me when I come home even when I've only been gone 15 minutes
- that my tomatoes are ripe!
- that tomorrow is half-price day at Salvation Army and I can go look for thrifted linens for quilts

- that my company pays for the DSL that I'm using right now
- that Project Runway has started a new season
- that I have a seemingly endless supply of knitting to choose from
- that E considers me the "best godmother in the world"

Yep... life is good!
- JavaNut

Bailey says: Stop using that flash in my face!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


No knitting or other crafty pursuits the past few days... hard to believe and is disturbing to even type it. But I did start to organize my studio (that just sounds so much better than craft room!). If I call it a studio, does that mean my work is automatically better? less amateur? Of course I forgot to take the 'before' picture...

Along with the 'organize the studio' and workspace, I have a growing list of things I want to make or techniques I want to try. Since I'm not feeling all that creative today, here's a random sampling

Espresso Art... how cool does that sound??

Tutorial to sew a cover for your passport! Make your own fabric labels from printable fabric... and make your own cutting table (which would be a great general work table for all sorts of things)

And for those that pack lunches (or at least intend to), a eco-minded sandwich wrapper

Dyeing yarn has been on my list for a while... here's a food coloring tutorial.

And this Seascape Wrap is high on my knitting queue... and would be a good project for the Water theme of Project Spectrum.... which I FINALLY joined and will start with the water theme next month (blue, purple, black). Project Spectrum (such a cool idea!) may also be my entre into ATCs - a concept I love, is totally me and yet... I've never done!

Okay... I've got to stop looking at all these fun things and get back to work!

Happy Creating!

Bailey says: Look Momma! See my meerkat impersonation!!
bailey the meerkat

Monday, July 21, 2008

Monday MeMe: Movies!

I'm going to make Mondays "Monday MeMe" (at least when I remember)... Today's Movie Meme was taken from Tienne. And I thought this was going to be easy... ha!

1. One movie that made you laugh: Hitch

2. One movie that made you cry: Shadowlands.. and it's such a good cry!

3. One movie that you loved as a child: Grease. It was the first LP I bought with my own money (ok, it was as an older child)

4. One movie you've seen more than once: so many to choose from, an all-time fave is always That Touch of Mink w/ Cary Grant and Doris Day

5. One movie you loved, but were embarrassed to admit it: Dirty Dancing

6. One movie you hated: I didn't hate it, but was pretty disappointed in Horton Hears a Who

7. One movie that scared you: I avoid movies that I think will scare me, but Inconvenient Truth was pretty scary!

8. One movie that bored you: the latest Indiana Jones

9. One movie that made you happy: Chocolat... a story with grace AND Johnny Depp at his best

10. One movie that made you miserable: ???? why would I do that?

11. One movie that you weren't brave enough to see: Schindler's List. I even bought the videos, but never watched it.

12. One movie character you've fallen in love with: just one? ok, Mr. Darcy (Colin Firth version)

13. The last movie you saw: Mary Poppins (my goddaughter was spending the night)

14. The next movie you hope to see: Mama Mia (what a cast!)

Hmmm... After thinking about all these movies, I think it's time to plan another chick-flick-knit-nite!

Happy Knitting -

Bailey says: I'm just going to play with my new orange ball while you watch those movies, ok?


Sunday, July 20, 2008

Already evening...

I can't believe it's already after 9:00pm! I had all these things I was going to get done today... ha!
I guess the inadvertent-procrastination theme actually started this morning... the service times changed at church for the summer (trial to see if we can get down to 2 services) so instead of 9:45, "my" service starts at 10:30am. Now 10:30 seems really late, and that I have all this time in the morning to relax or get things done... or whatever. But if you do the math -it's really only 45 minutes. Less than an hour. So far I've been late 2 out of 3 weeks...

And as for the intended afternoon's activity... I must confess to supply acquisition instead of organization! My goal is to have some before & after photos of my studio (aka craft room) before I leave to visit my family in 10 days.

Now off to at least get some knitting in so I can 'produce' something for the day!

Bailey says: I'm too tired to actually get my legs on the floor...

Have a great end to the weekend!
- JavaNut

Friday, July 18, 2008

But Mummy, I CAN knit!

That's what M (age 4) kept telling her mother when she watched her sister (age 6 1/2) knit.

So when we all met (the 2 girls, their mum and me) at a LYS for 'social knitting' this evening, instead of working on my socks (I really want to finish SOMETHING for the Summer KAL-CAL), we got some Burly Spun yarn and size 13 needles. And you know what? the kid was right! She could knit!!

Seriously... she had watched her sister so intently that I barely had to guide her to get her started. She'd have the occasional 'this way?' when she was wrapping the yarn to make sure it was going the correct way, but other than that.... she could knit! And she was so excited and pleased with herself that she had to bring it to dinner...

knitting at dinner

Now I did notice that by the time dinner was over she had increased the width of her knitting by an extra stitch, but heck - who hasn't done that?!

So no knitting for me today, but another knitter has joined the fold and that's even better!

Happy Knitting
- JavaNut

Bailey says: How could you possibly find Squeak annoying? He's my favorite... well, except for the frisbee you won't let me play inside.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Whoo-hoo for Woodland Shawl!

I finally had a chance to take a pic of the finished the Woodland Shawl for E's bday next month. It was an easy knit - quick to memorize the pattern which made it very portable. I didn't love the yarn, but the color is perfect for her and it's a superwash. Hopefully dirty little hands will stay away, but with 2 kids something washable is always a plus!

Woodland Shawl Closeup

I did make a couple of minor modifications (see notes on my Ravelry project page)... and think I may have to add one for myself to my queue. But not for a bit - there are babies to knit for, bags to design and socks to complete for the Summer KAL-CAL!

And oh yeah, that work thing...

Happy Knitting!

Bailey says: Momma, you go work on the computer - I'm going to stay here in my favorite shady spot!
Who can blame him?

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Art & Wine Festival...

My favorite Art and Wine festival of the year was this weekend... It's become a tradition to go with S & L and we got there first thing Sat am (well, okay - it was closer to 10:30). We had a great time - saw the 'earring lady' where we always paw thru boxes of earrings for about 30 minutes - although this year I excercized restraint and only bought one pair. L bought a fabulous print of a batik design from an artist from Uganda. He was fascinating and told the story of each of his pieces - I loved the concept, but the style wasn't really me.

The highlight for me was Richard Curtner - he makes the most amazong 'textual collage' pieces. The collages depict scenes or objects, but his medium is magazine texts. He cuts shapes from magazines where the text is on different colored backgrounds and the colors form the design. And in each collage, there are some key words or phrases that stand out and are related to the image he's created. I bought this print called Sketchbook, and have ordered another one...
Off to finish my final rows of the Woodland Shawl (Ravelry link)... a great way to end the weekend!
Happy Knitting!
- JavaNut
Bailey says: You interrupted my nap for this?


Thursday, July 10, 2008

Bailey knits...

Today was another hot day and on my way to work the radio indicated it would get to 102 - yikes! My house stays pretty cool (all relative) until about 3pm and then it's hot and stuffy until the temp drops in the evening...

So about 2:30 I had finished my meetings so I thought 'I'll work from home the rest of the afternoon so I can check on Bailey and if it's really that hot, give him a bath to cool down. Well, clearly he wasn't suffering from the heat... this is the sight when I walked in the door!

Now yarn left out in the open is fair game and a temptation I avoid leaving about... but this time the little stinker got into my knitting bag and pulled 4 skeins out for whatever game he played!! I was dying... I really wish I could have seen a video of his antics, because clearly he was having fun! And fortunately, as in previous incidents, no knitting or expensive yarn was harmed in the process!

Who can blame him - I like to play with yarn!!

Bailey says: I'm hiding in the jungle... momma won't catch me for playing with her yarn!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

It's hot-hot-hot!

It's still hot... and in case I'm too subtle - I don't like hot weather!! I'm incredibly grateful that it's not humid, but I'm more grateful that when it gets this hot I know it will only be a few days. That doesn't necessarily keep me from wanting to complain about it though.

There are several projects floating around in my head, but the inertia (I blame it on the heat) has me falling back to the Woodland Shawl.

1) I want to get it done, and 2) it's pretty mindless. I never thought I'd refer to lace as mindless, but this was such an easy pattern to memorize, that it's become mindless. I'm approx 75% done so the push to finish is strong...

I finally had a chance to take an outdoor photo of it - otherwise the coral color looks like neon orange. So here it is in its in-progress, pre-blocked state. The second picture shows the center row where I picked up live stitches from a provisional cast-on to make the shawl symetrica. Not perfect, but I like it and blocking will do wonders once I'm done. My modifications are in the notes of my Ravelry Project page for it (I also shifted the placement of a couple of YOs).

On a completely different topic... I bookmarked this post from Etsy on DIY Green Cleaning and finally got around to reading it. Some easy suggestions that I'll definitely try... as I finish up my existing cleaning products, I'm trying to 'clean green.' Take a look...

Happy Knitting
- JavaNut

Bailey says: I'm staying away from that thing that blows in my face!
Bailey under table

(however at last check, he was flopped down about 3 feet in front of the fan...)

Monday, July 7, 2008

MeMe for 4s

Another MeMe!

I'm having fun with these and 'borrowed' this from Throws Like a Girl... who 'borrowed' it from Yarn Thing. What great company... I'd meant to post this on the 4th of July, but of course- completely forgot!

Four jobs I have had in my life:
1. lamp shade sales
2. switchboard operator for a software helpline (aka therapist!)
3. IT analyst/project manager
4. manager

Four films I have watched more than once (this could be such a long list):
1. That Touch of Mink
2. Mirror Has Two Faces
3. To Catch a Thief
4. Shadowlands

Four places I have lived:
1. Needham, MA
2. Houston, TX
3. Norcross, GA
4. San Jose, CA

Four places I have been (again - too many to choose from!):
1. Disney (land and World)
2. Singapore
3. Sydney
4. Copenhagen

Four favorite foods:
1. ice cream
2. fruit salad (how's that to cover berries, nectarines, kiwi, pineapple, etc!)
3. french fries
4. sushi

Four places I’d rather be right now:
1. wherever mr. right might be
2. vacation (any place will do!)
3. winery
4. heaven

Four T.V. Shows that I watch:
2. Gilmore Girls
3. 24
4. Design Star

Have fun and let me know if you join... Tag, you're it!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Had to post a pic of my favorite Brits celebrating their first 4th of July celebration! They had a great time decorating bikes for a bike parade and then swimming and a BBQ all afternoon.

First 4th of July!

As we left, E asked again when she could have another sleepover so I suspect I'll have a guest in the near future!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Indie...pendence Day!

I love it when Thursday is like Friday and there's an extra day thrown into the weekend. Well, I'd like it even better if there were TWO extra days thrown in, but lowly workbees can't complain!

Independence Day weekend has officially started... well, the start has been pretty anti-climatic. After racing to get out of the office and to the grocery store before 5:00 (traffic at the start of a holiday weekend is never good...) I realized I didn't have the list for a brunch dish. I guessed what I needed. And after spending over $100, I got home and realized I had nothing to eat for dinner. Then I realized I left the Mike's Hard Lemonade on the bottom of the cart in the parking lot. I was looking forward to the Limeade tonight. And since it's been abandoned in the parking lot, I REALLY want it. sigh. I even watched the bagger put it down below and thought to myself 'I never put stuff below because I forget it.' Apparently I needed to prove that point.

Fortunately I can go get a replacement tomorrow by showing my receipt... the clerk laughed (and yes, I think it was AT me) and said 'happens all the time.' at least I have company in my stupidity.
The Indie reference is because I love this art work at my friend E's house... I really love it. It's painting and collage on an old cabinet door, complete with rusty hinge. When I get my act together I want to try to do something similar...

Miserable photos because I only had my camera phone with me, but I love the different textures and colors... it was a bday gift from her mom and the quote at the bottom says "we raise our girls to reach for the sky... but sometimes it's really just about the dress"

Amongst the holiday festivities (2 bbq, 1 brunch), I hope to clean the house and make progress on the craft room so I can actually start using it!

Bailey says: Momma, you didn't tell me the pillows were such fun!