"Properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit, and it doesn't hurt the untroubled spirit either." ~ Elizabeth Zimmerman


A Potpourri of Things

Is it Tuesday already? Time is just flying this week.

Over the weekend we worked on putting the new flooring in the sun room. All day Saturday we worked on emptying the room and getting the floor ready to glue the bamboo to. That required removing about 5 million staples. They must have had a sale on staples the day they installed the carpet. Here's what it looked like after we emptied it-except that desk. We had no place to put it so we just left it and moved it out of the way as needed.

On Sunday we laid bamboo all day. We got about 2/3rds done. Here's how it looks at the moment. We'll probably finish that last part next Sunday.

One of my orchids is blooming.

Check out this site: One Million Giraffes

They are trying to get one million pictures of hand made giraffes posted on the site by 2011. It's an ambitious project. No particular reason for doing it except to say they did. I intend to contribute something.

There is a new very nice stretchy bind off in the current issue of Knitty E-magazine:

Jeny's Surprisingly Stretchy Bind Off

I've tried it and I like it a lot. It comes in handy for toe-up socks and lace shawls.

I am making more Octahedral beaded beads. I thought I was done and was going to do something else for awhile (I have a craving for some ornament covers) but then I stumbled into a little transaction with one of my Ravelry friends. He is going to trade me 3 skeins of hand dyed sock yarn for 3 octahedra bead key chains. I am so excited. I will tell more when I know more.

I am still working on my Bayerische sock when I get the chance. Not much knitting going on with all this upheaval in the house. But I'm managing to get a row in here and there.

I have joined a Mystery Shawl knit along. It starts January 1st, 2010. I've decided 2010 will be the year of lace (last year was the year of socks). It is being hosted on Yahoo groups by MMario if you want to join us. He does such wonderful shawl patterns. I figure what ever he comes up with for us to knit will be beautiful. I've got tons of lace weight yarn in my stash, also known as knitting machine yarn. I might as well use it.

Next Saturday is the annual Parktoberfest. I've been remembering last years and I was not walking hardly at all then. It was shortly after my surgery disaster. I remember struggling to get from my car to the chair they had for me so I could at least be there. I'm in a lot better shape today. I'm walking fairly well. My leg still swells up, but I've learned how to live with it.

I'm planning on making a crock pot dish for the event, as well as a platter of fresh veggies and dip. I was perusing my crock pot cookbook and I think I will try something new called Enchilada Ole'. It involves tortillas, meat, salsa, green chilies, sour cream, and cheese. Looks super easy and super tasty too. The meat called for is chicken, but I think I'm going to use beef instead. It should substitute just fine.

I wanted to make spaghetti pie, but I have no way to keep it warm. There is no oven at the party location. Spaghetti Pie is not very good cold.

Have a great day.


RIP Purple Kitty Mug

It's gonna be one of those days. Last night I accidentally broke my coffee mug. My hand-crafted-by-a-local-artisan-so-it-was-darn-expensive-but-oh-so-cool purple kitty ceramic coffee mug. I've been using that mug for my coffee every morning for years and years. So long I can't remember when I bought it. Sigh. My morning coffee just isn't the same in a Hawaii souvenir mug. I see a trip to the Christmas Craft show in Spokane next November in my future-in hope the artist will be there so I can beg her to make me another one. Chances are slim-that she'll be there......phooey!

It's funny how attached we get to things.

I have been a shamelessly bad girl. I ordered 3 new beading books from Amazon to enhance my library. 3 books. I need more beading books like I need a hole in my head. However, they are all wonderful wonderful books, so I won't be sending them back for a refund.

Seed Bead Fusion: This is a brand new release by Rachel Nelson-Smith. It has her famous Ootheca Cuff bracelet pattern in it. There are projects for both wire and thread. I think it's an important addition to my collection of 3 dimensional beading education. The instructions and diagrams are good, and it is one of those books that gets my creative juices going.

The Beaded Sphere by Judy Walker: I'm not sure why I wanted this book so bad, but I did. I think it was the picture on the cover. And what a cool book it's turned out to be. The author, Judy Walker, takes us step by step in great detail on weaving 3 dimensional stand alone geometric shaped objects, sculpture, as well as jewelry. I am very impressed with how good this book is. Definitely a must in a bead weaving library.

The Art of Beadwork by Valerie Hector.This is a good book for learning about the different types of bead work from around the world-both ancient and modern. There are some wonderful photographs of beaded pieces from all over the world. There are projects in it, but the book is more about how to design your own using various ideas and techniques than just being a book about how to recreate specific projects. A good book for inspiring and releasing the designer in a person.

The week has been busy. I've been trying to organize and clean, as well as get ready to empty the sun room so we can rip out the carpet in there and lay more bamboo. I've been boxing up books (my knitting library is in there) and nicknacks, and all the stuff on/in my desk. We have a LOT of stuff! I need to get rid of some of it, and get some cabinets or something to keep the rest of it. I want so bad to have an organized house, but organizing it, then maintaining that organization is one of those things I am not good at.

The padding for our new area rug arrived Thursday, so we've laid it all down in the living room.

This is the matching runner between the couch and the dining room.

This is a close up of one of the moose on the rug.

The boys got all excited when I was taking the pictures. They wanted their picture taken too, so I obliged.



I've got a lot to do today, so I better get busy. Have a good one.


Learning Something New

Now that I'm done with making the beaded beads for the swap, I can go on to something new. Awhile ago I bought Diane Fitzgerald's newest book Shaped Beadwork. I'm going to tackle some of the lessons in this book. I've started with learning how to bead a dodecahedron, which is a 3 dimensional shape made with 12 pentagons. Here's where I am with my first one.

Using 3 colors of size 11 seed beads. The book says to use Delicas, but I don't have very many in my stash, and they're hard to find around here (I sure miss Beading Buddies). So I shall go with what I've got for now.

I need to make 5 more pentagons and then I can assemble it.

The weekend was good. On Saturday Sweet Hubby and I went foraging for moving accouterments. We have a piano and a rather large heavy treadmill in the sun room that will have to be moved before we can start tearing up carpet in there. The plan is to do that next weekend. I have my bad back, and he's getting old, so we decided to buy a piano dolly and whatnot for moving heavy items more easily. We find ourselves more and more needing to move something heavy and having no one but us to do it. These tools will help.

This morning the UPS guy delivered a new beading book. It is about right angle weave, which I love to do. The book seems to be pretty good, so far. Good diagrams, lots of photos, good explanation on how to do things. The projects are absolutely scrumptious. I'm happy to add it to my library.

Our weather for this week is supposed to be summer-like, in the 80's and 90's. However, it started out this morning at 26F. Thus ends the life of the 'deck garden', and my dahlia bud was just opening up. Rats. No more tomatoes either. I would have covered everything before going to bed but I really didn't think it was going to get that cold. I mean, it was warm yesterday, and it's hot today. How was I to know?

Have a good day.


The Last Set

I have finished the last set of beaded beads I'm making for the swap.

Please notice the absence of pink from the Rainbow of Octahedrons.

I started out wanting to do pastel colors, but I didn't have any pastel orange or green that I liked for this project, so I used the ones I do like, which negated the whole pastel idea. Well, then I decided I wanted to use transparent colored beads along with the rainbow idea since all 3 were made with transparent beads.

That led to finding these lovely a/b transparent blue beads in my Czech bead collection (didn't have anything I liked for this in the Japanese seed bead collection). The pink, though being transparent, looked too washed out with the rest of them. Employ scissors-no more pink. I like this red much better. I had to separate them from a bead soup of several different shades of red to get them. What we do for our craft!

That is the creative process that went through my brain as I made these. My ideas evolve on the fly most of the time.

I want to add a purple one to make the rainbow complete, but we're supposed to do sets of 5, not 6. So I will just have to ignore the impulse. Sigh......

Have a great weekend.

New Floor Pics

Remember this picture a few days ago?

Here's the same corner. (Now you can see the monitor mounted on the wall that I referred to)

Isn't this floor gorgeous? I am so happy with it.

Next week part of it will be covered with a new rug that is supposed to look like this.

Yes, those are moose. Seems like a good idea right now. I want the room to be greens and browns with an outdoorsy sort of theme to it. It will go really well with the furniture. I intend to do something about those hideous blue print valances too. I want drapes. I haven't had real drapes in 17 years. Waiting for the rug before I decide on that though. It's hard to tell exactly what color the rug is going to be from a computer monitor. (Oh, did I mention I ordered the rug online? Got it for 30% off.)

I have almost finished the last of the beaded bead sets for the swap. I did the fifth bead, then decided I didn't like the pink one so I've taken it apart and I'm going to do it in red instead.

I have 4 people signed up for my Russian Spiral class today. I am so excited!

Have a great day.


BFOs and KWIPs

In order to keep myself sane the last 2 days because of the chaos that is my house, I have been creating.

I am working on the last set of 5 beaded beads to send in to the bead swap group I participate in. After trying several different ideas-and chopping them apart in disgust, I settled on something simple. I acquired some 8mm glass pearls and decided to go all rainbow octahedral. I have the first 3 done.

Last night I started the 4th one, in green of course.

The fifth one will be a shade of blue of some sort. I haven't decided what just yet.

I am, in fact, working on two pairs of socks. I have this bamboo/nylon sock yarn from S.R.Kertzer called On Your Toes that I have been wanting to try out. I'm working on a simple garter rib pattern.

Here is proof that I have, indeed, started the second Bayerische sock. No second sock syndrome for this girl!

My plans for today are to putter. That means I'll flutter around the house doing a bit of this, and a bit of that. I still have 3 loads of laundry to do. So I'll finish that up. Then I'm going to box up all the dvd's and remaining books in the living room so we can finish up the flooring this weekend in there. If I have enough boxes, I'll start the sun room too. I want to spend some time out on the deck knitting, or beading, because it's a beautiful sunny day out today and I know I don't have very many of those kind of days left before that four letter word starts coming again (you know, the one that starts with 's'). So I will make time for that.

What are your plans for the day? I hope you have a good one.


So That's Where It Was

I found the cord to my camera. I also found the 2 missing library books. So all is right with the world-more or less. Well, maybe less, but I'll get to that later.

Almost all the pics I took at the 50th wedding anniversary party turned out pretty good, if I do say so myself. No one has flames or napkins coming out their nose, or branches sticking out of their ears, or whatever (this is in reference to pictures that friends had taken at my wedding-LOL!) I think Jan will be happy with the majority of them. Here are just 3 of the 243 I took.

This is the cake, or rather, the cupcake tower that my friend Jan made. She had 5 or 6 different kinds of cupcakes. Every one of them was absolutely delicious. I want her frosting recipe!

The is Jan and Ed Murphy, our friends. Married 50 years.

This pic was taken by my daughter Sarah. I sat down at the table to take a rest. She used me and my camera for fun. We were just goofing off. She's really good at taking pictures of herself with others like this.

Caution-pictures of hard work ahead.

Here are some flooring pics. I didn't think to grab the camera until we'd already pulled up carpet and padding. Sweet Hubby is pulling staples out of the floor to prepare it for the bamboo boards.

Ruth pulled staples too. Actually, we all pulled staples. There were a lot of them used to hold the carpet padding in place.

This is me looking at my master art work.

Yeah, I glued those boards down in that corner. (That is not a tool in my hand. That is actually the arm of my husbands computer monitor that is mounted on the wall there.)

We managed to get all the way to the edge of the window that day. As much as we'd like to work on it during the week, it doesn't look like it's gonna happen because we have so much going on outside our house. I really thought things would slow down for September. HA! I guess I should look at the bright side. We are not bored with life.

Today I bought a bunch of 64 qt plastic containers to put stuff in. We are working on the room 1/3rd at a time. We moved the first third, put down the flooring. Next we'll move the middle 3rd and do it. Then the last 3rd after the middle is done. The last 3rd will require removing Sweet Hubbies DVD collection from it's 8 ft high shelving. I need the boxes for that. I figure after we're done I will then have 10 plastic boxes to store yarn and patterns in. I need to get a few cardboard boxes too, for when we do the sun room and I have to move all those books down there (Sweet Hubby and I are avid book buyers). 10 boxes is not going to be enough!

Now for the not so good news. We know what is wrong with Morgan's eyes. No, he does not have cataracts or glaucoma. He has a degenerative eye disease that is causing his corneas to fill with water. At the moment they are 3 times normal thickness, and his left cornea has a large blister in it to boot. I am going to be giving him antibiotics for awhile, and an eye ointment that may, or may not, help to dry out those cornea's a bit-both 3 times a day. Regardless what I do, it will gradually progress worse and worse and eventually become very painful for him. There is no hope of getting his sight back.

The blood in his eyes is blood vessels growing into his corneas.


I got 3 rows done on my Bayerische sock at the Yarnie's meeting today. So I am managing to get a little bit of knitting done.

Have a nice evening.


Chaos Let Loose

I had plans for today's post. Ha! See the below picture? This is my life today. It shows exactly how I'm feeling.


Not much knitting or beading has gone on for several days now.

I was going to post a bunch of pictures and tell you all about this weekend, but I can't find the cord for downloading the pics off my camera. I know it's around here somewhere, but darn if I can remember which box...

You see, I got this crazy idea on Sunday to talk Sweet Hubby into going to look at flooring. I've been wanting to get rid of our carpet for several years now. I was even starting to feel desperate about the whole issue as the years have gone by, and still no new floor. It was Labor Day weekend. There are some really great sales on Labor Day weekend. So, off we went. I didn't really believe that we'd actually buy anything on this trip. I mean, how many trips like this have we gone on and come home empty handed? Lots, that's how many. I was wrong.

We became the proud owners of 33 boxes of bamboo flooring.

Yesterday morning, while I was in the shower, Sweet Hubby (without warning) started moving stuff out of one half of the living room, and before I knew it, all was chaos in our house. Not only can't I find my camera cord, but I don't know where he put the 2 library books that are due either. I will have to spend some time digging in the piles in the bedroom I guess.

We got 4 boxes of the flooring installed in the living room yesterday. Wow, it's a lot of work putting down wood flooring! Sweet Hubby decided to glue, instead of nail. (Now, there is some fun. How do you keep the fur kids out of the glue? Heheheh.) Ruth came up for the weekend and helped us. I am so glad she did. We really needed the help.

I am so happy to haul that gross awful smelly stained worn out disgusting carpet, along with it's padding, out the door though.

The floor is going to be gorgeous, judging by what we've installed so far. I can hardly wait until it's done. I'm getting a big area rug for the living room, and some throw rugs for high traffic areas.

There was some discussion about getting a large rug to put under the dining room table but after careful consideration, I scrapped that idea. It would defeat the purpose of the wood floor-to make pet messes easier to clean up. The dining room is where the most pet messes are.

Anyway, I have pics of what we've done so far, but no way to get them on the computer at the moment.

I also need that cord for all the pics I took on Saturday. We went to the 50th Wedding Anniversary party of some very dear friends-Jan and Ed Murphy. I took hundreds of pictures for them. Gotta find that cord!!

This afternoon I'm taking Morgan to an appointment with a canine eye specialist. We're going to find out if he has Glaucoma or not. Reddish brown spots that look like blood appeared in his eyes last week. I took him to the vet to find out what it is. They've referred me to a Dr. Yates, canine eye specialist. We'll see what happens.

Speaking of Morgan, I also forgot to mention he turned 14 on August 29th.

Have a good day.


A Family Visit

A family came to visit yesterday. Click on the pics to embiggen.

What's that coming out of the bushes in the corner?

"Come over here children."

"Pose for the nice lady so she can take pictures."

Aren't they cute for 4 foot high babies?

I just wanna squoosh them with hugs and kisses.

"Okay, enough of that. It's past lunch time"

"Mm, nothing like some fresh plum tree for lunch."

"Hey kids, there's an easy to reach juicy flowering plum over here."

"Well, if the dog is gonna bark at me, I'm leaving. Hey kids, time to go!"


They showed up around 1:30pm. They milled around in my yard for about an hour playing and munching. Every so often they'd go for something important. I'd say "Please don't eat that", and they would back off and leave it alone.

This is the first time I've heard moose speak. The children make little high pitched calf moo's as they bounced and played on the lawn. Mom mooed at them every so often to keep them in line. Now I know why they're called Moose. They actually moo!

The bull in the last photo was a surprise. I never saw or heard him. It wasn't until Big Momma mooed at the kids to join her in leaving that he came running likkety split out of the bushes and across the lawn to catch up.

They came back after dark and demolished the Dogwood vine, though the big bull refused to step out where I could get a good look at him. He's unusually shy.

"Hey, I see something tasty over here."

The kids were absolutely fearless, walking right up to me as I stood on the steps at the back door.

This one was so curious. It wanted to sniff and nuzzle me. I had the fur boys expen set up at the bottom of the steps to keep the dogs safe. This time, it kept me safe. I stayed out of reach.

This one was just a little bit smarter, I think.

Big Momma wasn't the least bit concerned about me. She stood at the edge of the lawn, out of reach of my camera. I guess she's decided after all these years that I'm trust worthy? I wanted so bad to reach out and scritch a velvety snout, but I don't trust Momma as much as she seems to trust me. So I kept my hands to myself and just talked to them. Eventually they all laid down in the weeds against the fence around the garden and went to sleep for the night.

This morning there was more vegetation missing, including 2 branches off the maple tree, and my hummingbird feeder is broken into pieces, so I'm guessing they ate breakfast before they left.

Have a good day.