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Monday, July 30, 2007

Mondays Suck

Not that I'm saying anything new. But some Mondays are worse than others. Mine started out at work with an email trail forwarded to me from Spain (oh no, what's their problem now?) Spain lately, has been a pain in the butt when it comes to barcodes and today was no exception. Now, they're threatening to cease tender due to the fact that our product label barcodes are not 13mm in height. Nope, they're not. They're 7mm and have been for the past 7 or 8 years and they've been buying our product all that time. So why is today different?! I have a meeting scheduled with GS1 tomorrow. Either the insanity will stop there or it will get worse. So if you find me selling yarn at our local swap meet, you know I went over the edge...

I promised to get back to you on the movies we watched yesterday, so here goes:

The Number 23. I liked it. It was twisted enough to appeal to my taste without going overboard. The dream sequences were Twin Peak-y in their style and I thought Jim Carrey did a great job in his dramatic role. For everyone? Definitely not. But if you're bored with the same-o, same-o, and have a taste for weird, it will probably float your boat. I watched the unrated version. Can't speak to the theatrical version.

Premonition. Great concept, decent execution. Could have been better, but is certainly watchable. Worth a look-see.

We also watched...

Children of Men. Futuristic tale where all women in the world are sterile - all except for one who is pregnant. Recipe - 1 unlikely hero, stereotypical rebellious helpers with access to the underground and bad guys who want to kill the unborn child because they believe mankind should go extinct. I enjoyed this one, but was dismayed when watching the special features that they were attempting to tell a tale about global warming. BEGIN RANT: Like we don't get enough of this crap. Global warming is a theory people, and there is nothing we can do to affect change. We can be more responsible with our resources, be smarter about the fuels we use, give up the SUVs and live greener lives ~ and we should because it's the right thing to do as citizens of this planet ~ but even if everyone did their part, it's all a very small drop in the bucket. So thumbs up on the movie, thumbs down on the preaching based on theory. (Does anyone remember in the 70s how the scientists were warning us that we were entering an ice age?) END RANT.

The Astronaut Farmer. Little kids might like this. As for me, it was the dumbest movie I've seen in a while. It was flat and ludicrous on so many levels. So unless you're hurting for something to watch, I'd recommend passing this one by.

So that's it. My Monday and weekend movie reviews LOL. Hope your Monday was better and you got to catch a good movie this past weekend!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Sunday! Sunday! Sunday!

Nope, not monster truck races or WWF. Just a quiet Sunday at the old homestead. The day will involve dog bathing, movies and yarn as usual. On today's tube will be a selection of mind-benders:

  • The Number 23
  • Premonition

I'll let you know if they're any good or not ~ LOL.

I'll be working on my KAL to continue to hone those knitting skills and when my wrists get tired of that motion, I'll start on something for this month's CFL challenge.

Sandy's post on her blog reminded me that I had not yet done up my obligatory square for Krochet Krystal's daisy square pattern. Heavens to Mergatroid! Exit, Stage Left. So I worked up one real quick. These are used to create afghans for charity. If you are interested, you can get the details here.



I may work up another one later in different colors with a white background. This one doesn't float my boat too much, but I figured it can get lost amongst the other squares that she'll use.

The sewing bug is also starting to rear it's head. I haven't sewn anything in... well... I can't remember when. So in perusing the pattern sites, I ordered the following tote patterns:


McCall's M5823


Butterick B5006

I've got a chest drawer full of neat tapestry fabrics that I've picked up here and there which I can use to make these neat totes. The second pattern also includes a roll-up hook/needle case too :)

And that about sums it up for today. Have a great rest-of-the-weekend!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

The Garden

The veggie garden is something that I leave for my husband to tend, for the most part. But this year our garden was quite fruitful, so I thought I'd share our gardening success with everyone. Kinda like when your relatives make you watch their vacation movies.


Watermelon & Cantaloupe

There's about 8 watermelons and 9 cantaloupes on the vines at this point. If I remember correctly, the watermelon are the small round seedless variety.


Cantaloupe

Just about ready!


Tomatoes


More Tomatoes!


... and Cherry Tomatoes too!

I'll be canning some maters as there are way too many for us to eat up before they go bad!


Corn

The corn is almost ready too. We'll yield about 20 ears.


Gourds

And just for fun, some gourds. About 11 of them. I'll make bird feeders and hanging planters out of them for the yard and patio.


Green Seedless Grapes

This vine produced big time last year, but I'm not sure how it will fare after our big freeze we had this winter. Time will tell.


You will note that there is no zucchini in our garden. That is because we hate zucchini and all of it's little squashy friends. You can grow it.


Yard Helper

Here's a couple of pics of other parts of the yard.


Bamboo

Alas, we now have neighbors directly behind us. It's a good thing my girlfriend Barbara overbought when she was landscaping her backyard and she was sweet enough to give us her extra bamboo plants. It's starting to fill out quite nicely, but will probably still be another year before we see a 'screen' benefit to shield us from the neighbor's back windows.


Assorted yard plants

And that be our veggie garden and a peek at our yard. We still have a lot of landscaping to do ~ like finish the fish pond ~ but it's getting there. I just have to keep that hubby motivated and moving LOL!!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

The "Oinga Floinga" Hat

I believe this speaks for itself...

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Ol' Yellow Eyes

Buster ~ when his food dish is empty.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Knit One, Purl One

Boy Howdy. I finally get knitting. I have purchased every kind of knitting needle out there and it was finally the Clover Flex needles that did it for me. These are only about 5.5 inches long with a bead-ended cable. MUCH more comfortable in the hands than traditional straight needles, and far less awkward for this crocheting fool. (Joann's is having a 50% off one item sale in case you'd like to try a pair.)

I was piddlefartin' around on Sunday and finally decided to break these needles out (I purchased them months ago.) Grabbed a beginner dishcloth pattern at Lion and went for it. Below is the finished product.



I find that knitting is a bit more fussy than crocheting. It seems you spend a lot of time positioning the yarn in order to make a stitch (bring it forward, send it backward, push the stitches up on the needle, push them down on the needle...) But it's ok, I did manage to develop a rhythm.

I obviously need to practice casting on. My cast-on stitches are all uneven. I also need a bit of work on keeping the tension more even as I knit. But I'm getting it. This was a great beginner pattern as it had you frequently change stitches and row patterns, but not so often that you'd lose track of where you were at. So I think with a few more dishcloths or simple scarves under my belt, I'll be ready to rock and roll!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Fuzzy Baby Harp Seal

The second challenge for July at CFL was to crochet something you'd find in or at the ocean. I've been buying up Planet June's fuzzy amigurumi patterns ~ mostly because they are just too cute ~ and decided to finally make one as it was perfect for the challenge. So here be my fuzzy baby harp seal.


Seal and whale not to scale

If there's a next time, I will definitely use larger eyes and place them closer to the muzzle. The little 9mm eyes are just a tad small. But I think it will still make it's way to a special little girl as soon as I finish the other item I'm making for her :)

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Pain In The Butt Party Lights [Wire Is Not Yarn]

One of the challenges at CFL for July is to make something you'd find at a party in any fiber. I know. I made up the challenge. You'd think I'd pick something I already had in mind ~ kind of a perk, ya know? Hah!

I've always pondered making the
Excruciatingly Painful Party Lights, and I thought, 'hey, these would be perfect. I'll just work up a crochet version!' Ah-HAH!

Well, lemme tell ya. Crocheting with wire is a real treat. First, your fingertips get sore as all get-out. Then, there's gaining mastery over the wire. Word of advice ~ wear band-aids and if your wire doesn't come on a spool, put it on one! I'm sure I would have found this advice on the net if I had taken a second or two to look. Oh, and don't use your nice wood hooks. Grab your least favorite Boye or Bates. I didn't make that mistake, but after wrestling with the wire, that thought did occur to me.

Once I got the knack of it, it started to go a whole lot better. Well enough so that I'd post the instructions for others to give it a whack. So here you go!



Pain In The Butt Party Lights



Materials
26 gauge wire in your choice of color
Teardrop shaped beads
1 String of Mini Lights (I'd recommend a string of 10 or 12 if you can find them, not the strand of 35 that I bought!)
Size H / 5.0mm hook
Soothing music

Ch 23.

Row 1: Ch 2, 2 dc in 1st ch, dc across to last ch, 2 dc in last ch; turn.

Row 2: Ch 3, dc in 1st dc, dc across to ch-3, 2 dc in ch-3; turn.

Row 3: Repeat row 2, finish off leaving a long tail.

Finishing

Sew seam. With ending long tail, sew up seam. With both tails together, make a few tight twists. Cut wire and discretely tuck in end.

Stretch to shape. Stretch your piece both lengthwise and widthwise. Shape into a cone shape.

Add beads. Cut another piece of wire about twice the diameter of the bottom of the cone shape. thread a bead onto the wire and give it a couple of twists. Thread through the last row of stitches. Continue in this manner until you have a nice bead edging.

Secure to light string. Cut a small length of wire and thread it through the beginning chain. Place your 'globe' over the base of the individual light. Pull up wire around the top where the string wire meets the light base. Twist the two ends together, cut and hide the end.


Personally, I don't know how Zabet Stewart got control of the wire with knitting needles. I am amazed no hook was involved. Let me know if you're brave enough to give this a go! LOL