Tuesday, December 20, 2011


So recently, I have been noticing snowflakes everywhere, and there is not even any snow on the ground :) That's because I am talking about paper snowflakes. I made these 3-D snowflakes with my students.
This picture is from http://www.wikihow.com/images/c/c6/74621550_44bb79776f.jpg where you can also find great instructions on how to create these awesome snowflakes.

If you prefer the 2-D snowflake, you should check out this link where you can find folding and cutting instructions for super detailed snowflakes. Finally, and this may be my absolute favorite, the Star Wars snowflakes. I see some Darth Vader snowflakes in my future. Much better than actual snow :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Cat Toys!

I made this cat toy for my cat a couple years ago. She was playful today, so I took the toy out to see if she still likes it. It turns out she still loves it! From her immediate reaction, I would guess that the catnip inside still smells fresh and yummy :)

The toy is knit in wool and then felted. The felted wool makes it very durable, although my cat does tend to be gentle on her toys anyway.

Isn't she cute?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Angry Cardinal

My hubby's assistant loves to play the game Angry Birds, so when I saw this pattern I immediately thought of her. He needed an end-of-the-school-year-gift, and I took out my yarn and crochet hook :)

Hook size: F
Yarn: mostly acrylic with some white cotton
Pattern: Angry Cardinal by Itsy Bitsy Spider

Ths pattern was really fun to make. It was easy overall, just a lot of little fiddly bits that had to be sewn on. I used black felt and hot glue for the centers of the eyes.

My hubby's assistant loved it! That's the important thing :)

Monday, May 16, 2011

And it goes round and round...

In December I started a sweater, the swirl. I entered it in a WIP challenge this April to try to finish it up, and I failed miserably :( This afternoon, before yoga class, I finally completed all four wedges, pinned it together and ran to the mirror to try it on.
Surprise, surprise, it is too small. I have to admit that I had my suspicions. Every time I picked it up to work on it, I thought to myselft, "Wow, this looks kinda small." But did that stop me? Of course not. I prefer "delusional thoughts from Fantasy Island." Oh well. Tonight I will be doing a little frogging, so I can add more rounds to the spiral. Then I can start the wedges again and hopefully be more realistic about my size as it compares to the size of the sweater.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Pretty in Pink Headband

A few weeks ago, I finally got tired of my hair falling in my eyes during yoga class every time I did a forward bend. I began to search wildly for a headband, but could not find one anywhere. Obviously, it was time for me to make myself a headband. I found this pattern online(Ravelry link), pulled out some coordinating embroidery floss and my tiny crochet hook and off I went. It took me a little longer than it should have, because my finger is still stiff from my surgery last summer, but it turned out great.
Modifications: I did one less repeat of the pattern and added scallops to the flat side. I also crocheted the straps directly to the pattern band, instead of making them separately and attaching. Color changes were made as each hank of floss ran out :)
The headband works really well for yoga class, and I think I might even wear it out and about sometimes. I think if I were to make the pattern again, I would do one repeat of the pattern, then turn around and do the second repeat on the flat side, so it would be more symmetrical.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Amigurumi Video

I found this on a blog recently, can't remember where, but I think it was one of the Blogs of Note. It's a video of an amigurumi bear crocheting itself. Enjoy.

Book Review: Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
Science Fiction
This book follows the adventures of Richard Mayhew. At the beginning of the book, he is a typical businessman, engaged to be married and living a pretty normal life. One evening, while walking to a restaurant, Richard helps a girl whom he finds bleeding on the sidewalk. He takes her back to his apartment, and suddenly his life changes. The girl disappears and so does every trace of his normal life. He finds himself in a new world that he never knew existed, a world underneath London, a world full of interesting and weird people and places.
I read this book for one of my online book groups (Stitch and Book). I had read American Gods previously and really enjoyed it. Neil Gaiman's prose is amazing, and his ability to describe scenes and characters is engrossing. One of my favorite images describes a fight that takes place at the floating market. Fighters are trying out to get a job as a bodyguard. In this fight, a female comes forward to challenge the current champion, who had just defeated a number of dangerous guys. The female turns out to be a really great fighter: "Richard was thunderstruck: it had been like watching Emma Peel, Bruce Lee, and a particularly vicious tornado, all rolled into one and sprinkled with a generous helping of a mongoose killing a king cobra. That was how she had moved. That was how she had fought."
However, I was disappointed with the characters in this book. I found the villains, Croup and Vandemar, to be too cliché. They reminded me at times of Pinky and the Brain, as one of them is very intelligent and always knows what the plan is, while the other is trying to keep up. At other times, they made me think of that group of bad guys who are altogether evil and will go out of their way to do something cruel or disgusting. Many of the other characters in the book were very static. At first I thought this was because this book is Neil Gaiman's first solo novel, but then I learned that this book is based on a tv series. The may explain the type and depth of the characters portrayed.
Overall, I enjoyed the book and recommend it. It was an enjoyable and entertaining read.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Baby Blanket

Hubby and I went for a walk downtown today. As we were walking along, he saw a blanket wrapped around a stop sign.
Hubby: Hey, do you think that post is cold?
Me: (looking where he is pointing) Hey, I knit that!
Hubby: What??
Me: That's the baby blanket I knit for our neighbors.
Turns out our neighbors had been walking downtown yesterday and lost the blanket. I returned it to them on my way home.

This is a reenactment, not the actual post we saw it on, because I didn't think of taking a picture until we had walked a little further.
It was actually a stroke of luck, because I had forgotten to take a picture of the blanket before I delivered it, so here it is.
Gigi's baby blanket
Knit in 100% cotton in alternating row of stockinette, revere stockinette and seed stitch.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

First Polymer Clay Cane :(

I recently started playing with my Sculpey polymer clay. I thought it would be good strengthening exercise for my finger. Well, playing with it was not enough, so I had to try making something.

And so I made a really bad heart and surounded it with purple. I think I had Valentine's Day crafts on my mind or something.
I proceeded to roll it out into a long cane, and voila...I give you the misshapen heart cane.
Not sure what i will use it for yet, but I will use it for something. It's kind of a neat shape, even if it's not very heartlike anymore :)

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Buddha Necklace (100th post)

I made this necklace about 2 months ago and just never got around to posting it until now. My hubby wanted a necklace and could never find the right one. He knew he wanted semi-precious gemstones, so I showed him all the gemstone beads I have, and he picked out his favorites. He chose cube-shaped lapis lazuli, jasper, labradorite, blue goldstone, 2 triangular garnet beads and a carnelian Buddha. I spaced the beads with gunpowder colored seed beads and strung them all on beading wire. I love how it turned out, and he wears it a lot.

Here is a closeup of the Buddha. You can see how sparkly the blue goldstone is. It's a manmade stone, but I love it so much.
Can you believe that after more than two years, I have finally made it to my 100th post. Now that is exciting :)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Swirl Begins

I recently started crocheting a sweater for myself. I am using yarn that I originally bought for an afghan, and I am loving the color combination. The sweater is called the Swirl, and it's really unusual. I hope it works out. Thi may be the first step to me completing a New Year's Resolution, but I probably shouldn't get ahead of myself :)

Irish Artwork Anyone?

My cousin, Neil Butler, is having a sale at his store on bigcartel.com. He is an Irish artist and has some really cool prints for sale. Check it out here.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

New Year's Resolutions

Well, here are my resolutions from last year. I don't think I did very well :(

1. Knit a sweater. Fail. I did not knit a sweater. Again. That's two years in a row. I have, however, started crocheting a sweater this year, the swirl. Hopefully, this will be the year of the sweater.

2. Continue working on my diet and exercise routine. Fail. My husband and I had a difficult time with this one last year. We moved in December of 2009 and hubby threw out his back. It was really bad for months, so we stopped exercising. I had to stop too, so he wouldn't feel bad :) Since we were not exercising, it seemed silly to diet. Then I had my big MRSA thing this summer, and that stopped us again. Overall I gained back all the weight I had originally lost plus a few extra pounds. Major fail.

3. Continue working on my craft business. Fail. I bought a display case on Craigslist and started working on some jewelry displays. I will post pictures soon. Promise.

4. Try some new crafts, like fimo canes. Fail. I didn't really try anything new this year. I could blame the MRSA again, but I feel like I may be overusing that excuse :)

5. Write a novel in a month. I did start my novel, and in the month of November I wrote 12,000 words as a NaNoWriMo participant. I plan to keep working on the novel and to participate again this year. It was so much fun!

6. Do some charity knitting. Fail. Absolutely no charity knitting occurred.

7. Enjoy my life. I think I may have put this one in there so that I would have at least one resolution I could keep. I had a realy fun year, even though there was a lot of craziness. I have been working on my new house, I went to Oregon Country Fair and a few other shows, and have great friends and family. You can check it all out here.

8. Keep reading and keep a list of what I read. Yay, another one I accomplished, although I was disappointed with the number of books I read. You can see my list here.

Resolutions for 2011
1. Complete a sweater
2. Read more than 33 books
3. Keep my craft room organized
4. Get my craft business going
5. Stick with my diet and exercise
6. Enjoy life everyday

Let's see how well I do this year :)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Books I Read in 2010

Well, here is the final list of books I read over the past year.

  • The Witching Hour by Anne Rice
  • Waiting by Ha Jin
  • Dead in the Family by Charlaine Harris
  • NIce Girls Don't Live Forever by Molly Harper
  • Nice Girls Don't Date Dead Men by Molly Harper
  • Nice Girls Don't Have Fangs by Molly Harper
  • Dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris
  • From Dead to Worse by Charlaine Harris
  • All Together Dead by Charlaine Harris
  • Definitely Dead by Charlaine Harris
  • Dead as a Doornail by Charlaine Harris
  • Dead to the World by Charlaine Harris
  • The Twits by Roald Dahl
  • Club Dead by Charlaine Harris
  • Living Dead in Dallas by Charlaine Harris
  • Positive Discipline in the Classroom by Jane Nelson et al
  • Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
  • The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo
  • A Wind in the Door by Madeline D'Engle
  • Skulduggery Pleasant: Playing with Fire by Derek Landy
  • Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris
  • Crash by Jerry Spinelli
  • The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver
  • Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy
  • Loving Frank by Nancy Horan
  • The Oath by Frank Peretti
  • My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult
27 total. Not so hot compared to the 33 I read last year :( I also started writing a book this year. I wrote about 12,000 words during the month of November as part of NaNoWriMo. It was so much fun, and I am definitely going to continue working on this book and try it again next year. I have already started my 2011 reading and recently made a little library in my craft room, so maybe I can beat 33 this year :)