Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Meme 2008

It's never too late for a survey, right? :) I'm using it to gear up for my 'What I did on my Christmas Vacation, by Amy Dunn' post.

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags?
I prefer wrapping paper, just because we never used many gift bags when I was growing up. It's more satisfying to rip open that paper to get your present!! Of course, now I have enough wrapping paper for about 10 years so I use it on everything. :)

2. Real tree or Artificial?
Artificial - I am allergic to pine. I'd say it's my worst allergy. I do love being around real trees though, with the proper dosage of Claritin. As long as I don't touch it. My goal was to get a new artificial tree this year, but after paying my personal property tax and the rest of the bills I don't know if it's going to happen. I'll probably spend that extra money on toys for my Wii instead!!

3. Why are you willing to answer these questions?
Christmas is my FAVORITE holiday and anything associated with it is worth my time.

4. When do you take the tree down?
We haven't had one up much the last few years, but usually sometime in January or by Valentine's day at least. I love having it up to look at!!

5. Do you like eggnog?
I love it. Eggnog shakes, eggnog ice cream, eggnog flavored coffee creamer... love it!

6. Favorite gift received as a child?
Gotta be my kitty cats. I wasn't really a 'child', but my mom got my cats Shorty & Nippy at Christmas time when I was in high school. Before that I remember my two Barbie cars (a red Ferrari and a '57 Chevy Bel Air) were probably my favorites.

7. Hardest person to buy for?
My mom. She just gets what she wants so I usually have to try to come up with something I've made. It will be easier now that I am knitting as long as I can plan ahead!

8. Easiest person to buy for?
Justin - I try to pay attention throughout the year at the little things he says he wants so I can surprise him with them after he's forgotten about it. :)

9. Do you have a nativity scene?
Part of one - I have the first 'Bearitivity' set of my Bearfoots which has Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus and two little angels all as cute black bears. I'd love to get the rest of the sets and maybe another more traditional one someday.

10. Do you send your card by mail or e-mail?
Usually mail, but this year I think I'm going to get photo cards made up and e-mail them to who I can and send a 'hard copy' to the rest. (We JUST got our wedding photos back the day before Christmas so I am not late because I'm lazy!!) In the future I'm hoping to send them all electronically since postage is getting so expensive.

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received?
Probably clothes when I was younger - but I've never really hated anything enough to remember, I just exchange it or give it to Goodwill or re-gift it.

12. Favorite Christmas Movie?
Love Actually, but for the kid in me it will always be Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas?
I will usually get a few things for Justin throughout the year but generally about December 20th. :D

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present?
TONS. Especially for the gift exchanges (like 'white elephant') where you don't know who will be getting it. Thankfully I have a great memory so I am very careful about it.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas?
Peanut Butter Balls (only because the jellied cranberries is my most favorite at Thanksgiving).

16. Lights on the tree?
Always. I like colored ones but the all white ones look better with all of my crazy ornaments.

17. Favorite Christmas song?
I have a ton! Silver Bells and Carol of the Bells are tied for my #1 but almost every Christmas song I hear I say 'Oh! That's one of my favorites!' because I'm just gaga over Christmas.

18.Travel at Christmas or stay home?
Always end up traveling but I can't wait until we have kids for an excuse to stay home!!

19. Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer’s?
Of course! I know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen... and I even recall the most famous reindeer of all - Rudolph.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star?
Either - I am hoping that my mom will give me an angel she has that is white and very pretty. It was always my favorite topper.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning?
ONE on Christmas Eve and the rest on Christmas morning. That's how I grew up doing it, but with all the family we go see now we usually end up opening one families on Christmas Eve and the other on Christmas Day.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year?
People being jerks at the store and on the road. It makes me sad.

23. Favorite ornament theme or color?
Oh, probably anything with penguins or snowmen. My favorites are my Bearfoot ornaments that my mom & step-dad have gotten me. As for 'color'... is 'sparkly' a color? :) I love things that are flashy and loud and play music - that won't surprise any of my friends!! :D

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner?
Same as Thanksgiving - Turkey with stuffing, rolls and jellied cranberries. Pass the gravy, please! (Of course, I wouldn't say 'no' to starting a tradition of filet mignon for Christmas dinner!!)

25. What do you want for Christmas this year?
The same thing I want every year, Pinky... a Wii! (Justin finally gave in!!). I also really do need clothes so I hope I get some more. Justin really wanted a big TV and he got it! (And then was sad that I keep playing my Wii on it so he can't watch it. Haha!)

I'm adding a bonus question since it's after Christmas!

26. What is your favorite memory from Christmas this year?
Playing 'Da Yoopers' Christmas songs for Justin while we drove from his mom's to his dad's.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Hand Drama

I figured I'd post something for the people who have been curious about my Facebook status or comments I've made about my hand.

Three or four days ago I noticed that my left hand was a little swollen and hurt when I gripped anything or pushed it on a surface. I felt around and there was a weird little bump in the palm of my hand when I wiggled my middle finger back and forth. After consulting a few co-workers and Justin, they all convinced me to just go in to the doc and I obliged since I hadn't when I slammed my wrist with my trunk/hatch door and was still hearing about it. Well, the resident didn't know what it was so she called in her attending and even he said that I needed to go to an orthopedist. She had worked with a hand specialist at the Bone & Joint center here so she referred me to him and thankfully he had an open appt yesterday morning where he had just had a cancellation.

He came in to see me before they could take me for X-rays and confirmed that it was just a ganglion cyst on the flexor tendon sheath, and that I had three options: 1 - wait and see if it goes away, 2 - aspirate it (try to pop it), or 3 - surgery to remove it. I decided that since I was already there we might as well see if he could aspirate it to relieve the pain & pressure. He sprayed my hand with cold (kind of like spraying yourself with an air duster), put some local anesthetic in, and then used a bigger needle to feel around to pop the cyst. It didn't hurt too bad, but it felt WEIRD, because I could feel the needle in the middle of my hand. INSIDE my hand. After a few minutes he thought he got it and pushed around to drain it.

I asked how long the local would take to wear off and he said 'about 5 hours, give or take 3 hours'. Now, I've never had that much local in one place before, so I didn't know how I would burn it off. That's why my middle finger was numb all day. I still had some numbness when I went to bed at 9:45, so I figure it would have taken about 14 hours to completely metabolize the anesthetic he gave me. Geez!! It's one of the most aggravating feelings for me when something is numb, so it was a hard day! I couldn't type worth poo, so I didn't go back in to work where I wouldn't be able to do anything productive. I also ended up feverish and a little nauseous, I think from the worry about when feeling would return to my finger.

This morning there is no numbness, but the spot in my palm where the needles were is bruised and sore. The swelling has gone down a little, probably with my massive doses of Ibuprofen, so in a few days I should be able to tell if it worked or not, and if the cyst is coming back. I'd take this pain any day over not knowing what a weird bump in my body was!

Thanks to everyone who showed concern and wished for me to feel better soon. :) I'm glad I can type again!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Question of the Week 2 (SP13)

Part A: Are you doing any holiday knitting?

Not really - I have had a few projects all year that I planned to give as Christmas presents but I kept getting sidetracked by other things.

Part B: Have you finished?

Nope. I have a few that I haven't even started!! The only things I'll be working on this year are my mom's birthday present and my December secret pal gift. I'm planning on making some kind of 'plan of attack' so that I can actually get some presents done for next Christmas.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

It's been a wild ride

Well, it's been a pretty crazy few weeks! After the wedding things calmed down for a bit but then there was the endless cleaning & organizing the aftermath of presents and stuff that had accumulated in the dining room. To add to that -

Right before the wedding I had started to train over in our Membership department (which is fun, because I get to play with smart phones) and have been bouncing back and forth between there and my regular job every week.

Our CEO challanged us at our last review to complete a Management Self-Study Course before year-end. Tracy and I teamed up and were able to finish it yesterday but I am looking forward to not have to dig through 400 pages of bylaws any time soon.

I was finally able to finish the 4th book in the Twilight series, Breaking Dawn last night around 7:30. (It's due back at the library today.)

I've had so many requests for knitted things, from family & co-workers that I am so scattered when it comes to working on a pal gift for this month to get to her by Christmas! My mom also asked for a hand knit item for her birthday (yesterday) which I have started but have had to rip out the first pattern repeat about 5 times because I need to only work on it when I am alone and not distracted. I really hope I can get it done by Christmas now that the self-study course is done and I have read all of the addictive Twilight books.


And to top it all off, my hand might be hurt. Again. So I have to make a Dr appt for that today as well. If only there were 2 or 3 of me!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Saturday, December 6, 2008

December Secret Pal 13 Gift

Yay!!! :D

This morning my first secret pal package arrived, so I ran to get the camera before opening it up.

Here is what was inside!

There was a cute Christmas card from my pal, some very pretty Ladybug Creations pink stitch markers

Pretty Christmas potholders (someday I will have a sewing room and be able to make these!!)

A very cute painted wooden kitten that opens up to hold a ring or necklace (or my new pink stitch markers). This was Tigger's favorite - you can see his feet in the picture as he had to jump on the table to sniff around at all the new stuff.

And a 10 bean soup mix. Easy cooking, who doesn't love that?!

Thank you secret pal!!! :D

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Question of the Week 1 (SP13)

Question of the Week #1:
In keeping with the awesomeness that was SP12, I thought I'd take a minute to throw out a question for everyone to answer in a blog post...

Since we've just had Thanksgiving here in the US, I'm wondering what everyone is most thankful for this year. You don't have to be in the US or even celebrate Thanksgiving to answer. Just share with us! :-)

This year - I am thankful for my wonderful, awesome, splendorous, super cool husband. I've had some rough times where I didn't believe that I could be as happy as I am now and I am thankful for him every day. I am also thankful for wonderful friends who support me, trust me, value my opinion and who feel the same way about me. :)

Turkey Day(s)

This Turkey Day weekend didn't seem as crazy as they usually do. We are glad to be home though, in our own big soft cushy bed with big soft cushy pillows! :)

Thursday morning we (I) got up early and loaded the car and we headed to Centerville for lunch with my mother-in-law's family. We got to see most of the little ones playing and find out there's another on the way! They had a little wedding shower for Justin & I (although I think everyone there had come to the wedding except one of Justin's cousins and his wife) and a baby shower for Jeremy & Mandy (the ones who didn't get to come). We got more great presents from everyone and it was really fun to see all the baby presents - I am not used to all of the homemade quilts and they are so beautiful!! Everyone seemed to like the baby blanket that I gave them and were impressed that it was knitted, so now I have to make some harder ones!! We left there around 5, the last group to go, and headed to pick up Justin's step-mom and brother and take them back up to my father-in-law's house. We got in pretty late and just went to bed!

Friday most of us got up early and Hollie & I went to JoAnns (crazy packed full of old ladies!) and Michaels. Hollie found a bunch of stuff for the kids she watches and some decorations, and I got 3 big collage frames for pictures! One that holds 9 5x7s for our wedding pictures (when we get them back), and 2 16x20 collage frames - one that holds a bunch and one that has spots for 3x5s. I can't wait to start digging through my pictures and filling them up!! I've been wanting them for so long!! We decided not to go to any of the other crazy sales, so we mostly worked on fixing the parent's computer (like most trips there) and watched TV.

After showers and rest, my father-in-law offered to take me to the yarn shop I had found that is in downtown St Louis. Justin came with, probably just for something to do. It took us about 30 minutes to get there - and it was huge!! I spent about a half an hour walking around & making sure I saw everything, they had a whole ROOM for sale yarn!! I got 15% off my regular priced yarns and 10% off the sale yarn so I was excited. :) I picked out a gorgeous, soft blue lace yarn which is my favorite color, a handpainted sock yarn and more of the cotton twist yarn that I had bought at my own LYS in pink. I also picked up an Addi Turbo Lace to use with the lace yarn I got to do my first lace project. I can't wait to start!! I spend most of the rest of that day ogling my new yarn, petting it, and looking for projects to use it on. :D
Saturday morning Hollie & I went to Hobby Lobby to check out their 2-day sale and I got a whole bunch of beads at 50% off! They are so pretty - I can't wait to make stitch markers and maybe some earrings out of them!! We headed back here to the rain and cold and get to have a lazy day today and maybe go see 'Twilight'.
I hope to get some projects done really quick, although I am so far behind on my Xmas knitting that I don't know if I can possibly catch up! I do know that I want one of the awesome swifts they had at the St Louis yarn shop though!! :D

Happy Holidays, everyone!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

My LYS expedition!

I made my first LYS purchase yesterday! (We went shopping there with my mom while she was in town for the wedding and she bought myself & Jenni a few things, but this is the first time I have purchased anything there myself.)

I got my swap presents and myself some presents too, my first laceweight yarn which I am searching for a pattern to use with now, a skein of blue Ty-Dy Socks (it is SO SOFT!!) and a cotton twist yarn, in blues - which is GORGEOUS. And funny, since it is the same colors as about 3 other things in my stash. But it's different!! :D These are up on Ravelry for any friends, family or secret pals that are curious.

Things are changing for me again at work, and I'm not sure if I like it. BUT, I don't know what anyone is planning for me - so I am going to try to stick it out as long as I can, mostly because I am just getting Justin on my insurance and everything and I hate wasting all that time, effort and money just to leave a few weeks later. I guess we'll see!

It must be Tigger's snuggle time - he is pacing between me & my monitor now... so I will write more later! :)

[[11/21 Edited out incriminating secret pal evidence]]

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Wedding March

Well, it's over! Family & friends swarmed in from all over for a crazy few days. Things just started to feel 'back to normal' about Thursday. J & I are now married and I have a giant pile of 'Thank You' cards to send out, along with the Secret Pal 13 Swap starting today, a mound of presents to find homes for and... a fat orange cat trying to get a tiny piece of paper out of my trash can. His little paws are making squeaky noises.

We've been talking about getting Tigger a friend for the last two days, my friend Tracy (who breeds Scottish Fold cats) is finally giving away or selling all but a few of hers. My personal favorites are Sterling or Bonkers (what a name!), but she has a cute black & white female kitten that J thinks is cute that may be the right choice if someone doesn't buy her. I've only ever had solitary male cats or a brother/sister pair, so I'm not sure how two boys would work out - if they could bond as much. I left the decision up to my new hubby, so we'll see!

Tigger just climbed the mattress in the spare bedroom. Without front claws. I need some caffeine to deal with my little monster! :)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Secret Pal 13 Questionairre

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with?
I haven't used many kinds yet, but Caron Simply Soft has been my favorite so far - it has just the right amount of stretch and stays together nicely.

What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
Homespun (Lion Brand)!! Anything with bobbles in it or the dreaded boucle! It is the debil.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
My Boye straights are in a vase with glass marbles on our mantle, my Harmony Options & dpns are in the Options case that came with them and everything else is in the drawer in our coffee table.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn?
About 2 years now, my mother got me a loom and then straights - I've learned from her, my Stitch 'n Bitch book and

Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
Intermediate - there's a lot that I haven't done yet but that I know will come easy for me and I am a fast learner. :)

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
I have an Amazon one and one at the Loopy Ewe so far.

5. What's your favorite scent?
Truthfully - my cat! But I love grapefruit and peach (not a fan of flowery scents).

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
All of my teeth are sweet. I am trying to stay away from the candy but I'm a sucker for M&Ms (which we used as wedding favors), Whatchamacallits and Nutty Bars.

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
Scrapbooking and I used to do counted cross stitch. I've made stitch markers and may make a few pieces of jewelry soon. My mom just gave me a drop spindle as a present this last weekend - I don't think I'll be very good at it but I have 2 rovings to try out!!

8. What kind of music do you like?
Top-40 pop I guess, I'm a long time fan of Matchbox 20, Barenaked Ladies (I've been to 4 concerts), Goo Goo Dolls, Billy Joel, and some newer stuff like Kati Perry, Lifehouse, Buckcherry & Simple Plan. I love music from some musicals - like Rent & Moulin Rouge. My iPod is stuffed full!

Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
Yes, and so can my car!

9. What's your favorite color(s)?
Blue! Green and Pink are OK too depending on my mood.

Any colors you just can't stand?
Orange. Eew! Unless it's on a pumpkin. Or lime green.

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I just got married yesterday! No kids, one fat orange tabby cat named Tigger.

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
All of the above! I L-O-V-E mittens.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
Smaller things that I can finish quickly like coffee cozies or dishcloths. - I have a very short attention span and have had very little time lately with all of the wedding planning (hoping that will change soon so I can try some gauntlet/wrist warmers and socks).

13. What are you knitting right now?
Scarves for presents, a Jayne hat for the hubby, baby blankets and an afghan the hubby has claimed as his.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
Yes! I get a few each year from my mom and I love and cherish them, even if I am too worried about their condition to ever wear them!

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
Depends on the project - but I love my Harmony Options. I drool over the Harmony straights and would trade all of my Boye's for them in a heartbeat. My Boye aluminum are my second favorite for cheap acrylic yarns that are sticky and I don't like plastic very much but I have bought some just because they have sparkles. :D

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
Neither :( I really want a winder - I wish I could find one on sale.

17. How old is your oldest UFO? about 9 months!

18. What is your favorite holiday? CHRISTMAS!!
What winter holiday do you observe? Christmas

19. Is there anything that you collect?
Hubby would say YARN! I do have a lot of Bearfoots (Big Sky Carvers) and a good collection of books. I love cute cat things - pictures, household items...

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on?
Books - the ones on my Amazon list, I try to keep it updated. Yarns - a lot! I just don't know what, but I'm into sock yarn lately although I think the nicer aran yarns would get more use at my house. I have a few examples in my Ravelry favorites (under Stash). Needles - Harmony straights (Knit Picks) and Harmony fixed circulars for doing magic loop. Patterns - just in the books that I want.

What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have? None

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
I haven't made any socks yet, or done anything cabled or with lace. I'd love to learn to spin on a wheel too, but I want to finish some projects first so I have room for more stash!

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements? Not yet, I'm not sure what to measure yet - but I can post them later.

23. When is your birthday? August 18th

24. Are you on Ravelry? If so, what's your ID? Yes - aredhelstar

[[11/24/08 Updated Amazon wishlist link]]

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

K-nitting K-news

That would be a cute name for a newsletter. It probably already is. :)

I finished the Candy Button Baby Blanket and moved on to my Blue Bagstopper. The original plan was to use all 4 skeins of the cotton yarn I had gotten on it, but after getting close to the end of the 3rd I realized it was already about 11" long and the pattern says to go to about 10". So I ended the body of the bag and took it to work to show off. :) I started the handles last night, just knit in garter stitch which makes a cute stripe effect. I'm guessing I may actually use up most of the 4th ball just on the handles!

We are getting a washer and dryer (FINALLY) delivered tomorrow!! Justin's family wanted to get them for us as a wedding present so last weekend his mom came down and we went shopping and got a set at Lowe's. I can't wait to do my first load tomorrow!! Now I can felt my coffee cozies too!! (I just need to get a zippered pillowcase or something to put them in because I have read how much the lint can mess up the filters! I think that I may even put them in a lingerie bag inside a zippered pillowcase for extra protection.

So, finishing projects is going well - and now I have to figure out what to make for a baby shower at Thanksgiving. At least I know it's a boy and already have some cute yarn!! :)

The bunny buddy I made as one of my first 'intermediate' projects finally went to his new owner, my friend (and co-worker) Della's great nephew Sammy. Hope let me know that he sleeps with it in his crib and plays with it and other toys in the morning. It makes my heart so happy to know that I can make things to keep those cute little hands busy! Next I have to try a teddy bear!

I am going to sign up for 'Secret Pal 13', a knitting swap that Jenni has been doing. It looks really fun and is only a commitment of $60 over 3 months - which is totally do-able. But then, I love shopping for gifts AND getting them! :) I have my anonymous e-mail address all ready to go and am just waiting for the sign up form which is supposed to start today (but isn't up yet - darn my early hours!)

That's all for now, I'll put up pictures of everything as I finish the projects. :)

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Snuggles and puppy dog tails

Why do I always need a title? That line from the little kid's rhyme about boys being made up of snails & puppy dog tails is going through my head but I had a snuggle session with Tigger before my shower this morning... so that's where my title comes from. :)

I haven't blogged in a while and would like to get back into the habit. I try not to fool myself and say 'I just don't have time' because if there is time for TV, knitting and surfing there is time for anything else.

As for TV, I am SOOOO glad to have new episodes to watch. We went through the entire 7 seasons of Gilmore Girls TWICE (since Justin only watched the last 2 seasons fully with me the first time I went through it) and the 2 seasons of Dark Angel this summer. I've started watching Angel when Justin's not here so I'm hoping I can get him hooked to watch Buffy. ;) HEROES!!! So good. I expect to have weird dreams about Sylar again any day now. THE OFFICE!! If you haven't started watching it yet, I won't spoil it for you. But awesome start to the season. :) SUPERNATURAL omgz. One word. Angels. I understand about it being hard for them to believe, but come on... if you know for a FACT that there is a hell (and you've been there) and demons exist (and you kill them) why is it so hard to believe there's a heaven with angels? It's a fundamental law of physics that every action has an equal and opposite reaction! If logical me can grasp it, anyone should be able to.

On the knitting front, I'm trying! Every project seems like dead weight. That's why I made some coffee cozies in-between and am starting to realize why the dishcloths are so popular. I don't use them and probably never will but I might start making them for presents just so that I can accomplish a FO in between monster projects. I want to make a pair of socks and wrist warmers (for work) soon but I know that I really should get some of these other big projects done first. I'm going to try to focus on baby blankets since I now know of 3 offspring coming soon around me!! I want to try to knit a teddy bear but I will finish projects before starting more!!! I will!! (Can you guess what my New Years resolution is going to be??)

Wedding... the only things left to do are get rings and tuxes. Yay! That chants through my head though, so hopefully we can get that taken care of this weekend and then I can worry about other things. Getting RSVPs is fun and I think we are getting our first present via UPS!! They tried to deliver something yesterday but we weren't home so I'm having Justin pick it up on his way home. I have an idea who it's from too, but won't say anything until I know for sure. :)

I know hardly anyone reads these but if you didn't get your invite (and you know that I like you), let me know. I'm sure I have some outdated addresses so it's probably lost in the mail and I'll send you a new one if you tell me about it. :)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Sock Prep

My new Harmony sock needles and yarn finally arrived last week! I took a break from the big projects to do a swatch of the Essentials Multi yarn with US 1/2.25mm needles and ended up with a gauge of about 10 stitches per inch! Crazy! :) Here's my little swatch and a closer-up of my new needles:

I'm going to try to finish up some projects before I do anything with socks or wristlets and I think I'll use the KnitPicks yarn first before using the good stuff that my mom sent me. :) She added some Noro Silk Garden Sock Yarn and TOFUtsies to my birthday box - I think the Noro will probably become a set of wristlets for the cold, cold typing at work. I'm planning to do the 'self-striping' where you do 2 rows from one end of the skein and then 2 rows from the other end to break up the big chunks of color - looking ravelry those usually end up looking really neat. Then I'll hopefully be able to make a nice pair of socks (in the right size) out of the pretty blue TOFUtsies. :)

Not much news for now, I'm trying to finish up my Candy Button Baby Blanket which will be my first finished project in ages! It's really cute, now I just have to find a baby to give it to. :)

Thursday, September 4, 2008


Why that song is going through my head at 6 AM, no one knows. :)

I am RABID to receive my KnitPicks package in the mail tomorrow, and if it doesn't come by Sunday I may have a breakdown. I've been soothing my sock knitting urges with my first Everlasting Bagstopper and just finished the first skein last night. I told myself if I could just get that far I'd go back and finish Justin's Jayne hat and the baby blanket I started to do some stashbusting, but even I know it was just a lie. :) I will try though! It will be hard because the Bagstopper is so much fun.

I'm also trying NOT to buy any more yarn until I can finish up at least 5 or 6 projects. I have some sock yarn coming with my itty bitty needles (to get myself to $50 for the free shipping) but after that I'm really going to try to behave.

Wedding planning - we ordered the cakes last night, I think they're going to be awesome. Justin took charge when ordering his own groom's cake ('chocolate with chocolate and more chocolate') so even he had fun. :) I also found an available place to have the reception - University Plaza (where we hold lots of events so I know the planning people). It's probably a bit more spendy than where I wanted to be but I know it will be good. I have an appt on Saturday to look at rooms and figure out if we want to do it there. The only catch is that we can't even get IN to the rooms until 2 or 3 pm - but I figure that's no biggy, it gives people time to relax and then we can do a dinner reception instead of a weird 'late lunch' kind of thing.

That's about all for now. I just need strength to get through this!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Busy Bee Weekend

Yesterday I had my eye appt and got a new pair of trial contacts - they are OK so far and not as sticky/dry as the Acuvue ones can get in my eyes but I'm still getting used to them since I haven't worn contacts regularly in years! Afterwards I came home and we had lunch and then set out on our wedding planning adventure.

We went around to a few different reception venues and couldn't find anything but we are waiting to hear back from the K of C about their 'lounge' (kind of a restaurant area with 1/2 of the bar) - I think it would be perfect and I really hope we get it!! It will seat up to 75 people with a small dance floor and it's just been re-done in the last few years so it is very pretty. There is even a door to the patio if anyone wants to eat outside (with the bugs - not me!). It's also CHEAP. So, please sent good vibes or prayers my way about that because if the other wedding party that is using the bigger room says no I may have to call her myself crying and pleading.

After that we stopped by Beth's Bake Shoppe (reportedly the best cake shop in town) and made an appt for Wednesday to order our cake - and she has the day open!! Then I called Beth's Photography (which is in the building Beth's Bake Shoppe started out in - 'what a twist!' as M Knight would say - oh, and it's a different Beth...) and made an appointment for this morning. So I now have the photographer booked as well, and a deposit paid to them that hurt my checkbook but they were the best pictures I saw AND the least expensive, so it was a no-brainer. Also, they are totally digital and I really liked the look & style of their pictures the best - I think it is a great fit. (Justin still wonders why we can't just give everyone a disposable. Men!)

So the only thing I didn't nail down was a dress, but I can't afford to order it now (after the photographer's huge deposit) so I'm not as sad as I would be otherwise. I did find a shrug to wear since I will probably have to get a sleeveless and just in case it is cold - so that is like 5% of the dress. :) My cup is 5% full!!

We also need to go order the rings soon, but at least we already have those picked out. I'm toying with the idea of printing our own invitations even though the ink will probably cost the same as ordering them online so hopefully I can afford to order them once we find out where we can have the reception too. It's so crazy that it's only 2 months to the wedding now!! I know everything will come together, since it all just feels so right whenever something is decided. :)

I got my new credit card with a picture of Tigger on it. It was free, and I was bored... so you know how that goes. It is so cute!!

OK, I'm going to go knit now and hopefully wind down from this tornado I've become. Thankfully Justin is at a LAN party today until late tonight so I only have Tigger to bug me!! :) I may go do some laundry too since I just realized that I stripped the bed so I can't just wait until tomorrow. Bummer! :)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

New TomTom Screens

Being up at 4 AM means that I get a lot of weird things done.

Like making new splash screens for my TomTom. :)



Enjoy. :)

Big Fat Fabulous Birthday

My big fat fabulous birthday week (ala Gilmore Girls) was certainly big and fabulous! :)

It started off with cards on Saturday (T-2 days) from Justin's sister and my Aunt which I was NOT expecting and was a fabulous surprise!!

On Monday (BFFBDay) I went to work because it was going to be pretty stress-free with a certain person gone, AND we got Panera Bagels as my birthday treat! I also received presents from Rose, Tracy, Lynn & Della including a noisy fun Halloween cat (that I annoy Tracy with at least once a day), Double Stuf Oreos, Hoops & YoYo post-its, Jelly Bellys and a silicone mini pan for making brownie bites! I got one card in the mail, from Justin's mom - and a call from her before we headed out to dinner. I had my fajitas from Chili's AND my favorite drink - a dirty Ketel One martini. I also had a call from my own momma (mid-martini) just to say hi and happy birthday. We came home and Justin gave me my new TOMTOM and let me play with it for about a 1/2 hour before going to bed. It was the BEST birthday I've had in years!!! :D

Tuesday, TomTom told me how to get to work AND home. :D

Of course, the BFFBDay must continue all week, because of presents ordered online! I came home Thursday to a giant box full of KnitPicks knitting needles from my mom (package #1) and Justin's other present - a 'Babette ate oatmeal!' t-shirt!! He said that the TomTom proved that he loved me and didn't want me to be scared and lost ever again and the t-shirt proved that he DOES listen to me even when I'm talking about crazy things. Have I mentioned how he's the best? :) My friend Hanie stopped by to hang out for the night on her way home to MN and I haven't seen her in YEARS! We had a ton of fun and talked about 80 miles a minute.

A few more cards trickled in (including funny ones with fun money from my gma, aunt & uncle) and I have a feeling that BFFBDay week is winding to a close. :) I received package #2 from my mom last night which included a load of knitting books, 2 skeins of fabulously cool sock yarn and a TINY 9" US3 circular needle to make them on, misc knitting accoutrements (stitch markers, cable needles, smaller darning needles, gauge wizard), Bearfoots ornaments (because each package has a bearfoots!), a North Pole shot glass, some gen-u-ine Alaska teas to try and favor boxes for the wedding and a card with a check. YAY!!

This is officially my favorite birthday in at least the last 10 years. :D

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Home Knits

I know, I should finish some projects before starting new ones! :)

Lily Sugar & Cream cotton yarn was on sale for $1 at Michaels last week so I picked up a basket full to use for baby presents and other fun things. They had one kind - Country Twists - that I loved because it matched my kitchen. I hit the Patterns section on ravelry when I got home to find out what I could make out of it and decided on a button-towel like the ones I used to have at gma's house. :) I may also make one with braided tie-tops.

I would also like to try making a rug soon, maybe one for in front of the garage door or a bathroom mat but I will need to find some cones of colors I like for that. I will also be checking out Hobby Lobby this week - they have some 'I love this yarn' brand cotton on sale. If it is softer like the one I'm using now I will see if it is cost-effective for me to try some of that. :)

I'd also like to try the Bubbly Curtain from my Mason-Dixon book, but it will probably have to wait until after Christmas.

Justin has requested something to use to hold his hot plates for eating dinner on the couch so I am going to try a few round dishcloths to use for that. Kind of a potholder/place mat idea.

I'm also toying with the idea of knitting some pillows for our couches. (I would use pillow blanks to fill them.) Who knows! :) Lots of ideas, but not much time to actually do them.

I'm out. Back to try to finish up that towel and watching LotR Fellowship of the Ring. ;)

Sunday, July 27, 2008


I've signed up for the WIP Wrestling portion of the Ravelympics!

I added ALL of my wips to give me some push to get all of these done soon!! :)

Wish me luck! Keep track of my progress on Ravelry or here with my progress bars over here --->

My First Hat

I finished my first hat this morning! Yay!! :)

It's really cute but I'm not sure if it will stay on my head - it is stretchy and the slippery yarn might mean it will be a Christmas present for someone else. :)

But, I did it!! This was my first go with knitting in-the-round AND using double pointed needles. Knitting in-the-round was easy because I have been using my circs for blankets and other things so the only new thing was using a stitch marker. I found the dpn harder to use and very awkward, but am glad that I didn't falter and was able to finish off the hat without a problem. I think it was more awkward because they are 8" long, but I'm not scared of using dpn anymore! :D

I'll get some pictures up tonight when Justin gets home.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Floods in the Midwest

Just liked this and wanted to share. I have noticed a big difference living in the south than the midwest so it feels good to have my concerns justified.

"I want to know. I look at Iowa, I look at Illinois,
I want to see the murders.
I want to see the looting. I want to see all the stuff
that happened in New Orleans.
I see devastation in Iowa and Illinois
that dwarfs what happened in New Orleans.
I see people working together.
I see people trying to save their property.
I don't see a bunch of people running around
waving guns at helicopters,
I don't see a bunch of people running shooting cops.
I don't see a bunch of people raping people on the street.
I don't see a bunch of people doing everything they can...
whining and moaning - where's FEMA, where's BUSH.
I see the heartland of America.
When I look at Iowa and when I look at Illinois,
I see the backbone of America."

I don't know anyone personally that was affected by Katrina, so I'm sorry if this offends anyone - but it does ring true. I went to college in a town that was recovering from a major flood that left most of 2 cities under feet of water, and they never had any of those horrible problems. I've grown up living near the Mississippi most of my life and had never seen people react to a flood like that.

Anyway, just something to mull over.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Survival Supplies

My package arrived from KnitPicks today!! :D Here is a pic of my fun new stuff.

I already put all of my needles away in my case and paged through the books looking at projects. I can tell I'm going to need to read the Mason-Dixon book, it looks like it's full of funny like Stitch 'n Bitch.

I can't wait!! I'm going to start a hat soon with my new little circular needle and dpns! :D

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Progress Bars!

Check out my cool new progress bars!! :D
(Underneath my WeeMee)

I need to run to the bank Monday and deposit a couple of checks. When they clear I can order wedding invites!! :D YAYS!!

I'm working on the Hoodie Baby Blanket for Ron & Kati's spawn like mad, I want to be able to finish it before my birthday. It's really helping my purling, I've gotten a lot faster. I've never done anything in stockinette before that wasn't on a loom!! :) I hope it turns out really cute, it is super soft. More pictures as it progresses!!

I'm also trying to plan my first sweater. I am going to try a 'To Dye For' from my Stitch & Bitch book because it is a really cute shape (bell sleeves & loose knit) and should be fairly straightforward for me. I'm actually going to knit from the pattern! :)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Your order is on the way!

6 little words to brighten up my day! My KnitPicks order is on it's way!! EEEEEEEEE!! Share in my excitement.

Here's what I ordered:
  • Needle Cables 47inch
  • Needle Cables 60inch
  • One Skein
  • Mason Dixon Knitting
  • Wood 16in Circ Needle Sz 8 (5.0mm)
  • Wood DPNs 8in Sz 8 (5.0mm)
The books are on sale and my main reason to spend money. I need the small circs & dpns if I want to make a hat. And the cables... well... I can never have enough cables!! MORE!! :)

I'm so happy. I'm going to be unbearable until they come but it's a welcome distraction from ticking off the time until my birthday (31 days...)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Hellboy & Care Package

I know my movie reviews are always so long and insightful, so I will keep sharing them. ;)

Hellboy 2: The Golden Army - rent it. I am a HUGE fan of the first movie - L-O-V-E-D it. But with too many voice/actor changes and a far-fetched plot I didn't really like the sequel. Too much like "Lord of the Rings vs Hellboy" which could have been the first working title.

The knitting care package arrived from my mom last night, full of cashmere! I've posted everything in Ravelry and will get pictures of everything once the sun is up again. The knitting portion of the box included 13 balls of Lion Brand Cashmere Blend (in Navy, Charcoal, Black and Cream), one ball of her new homespun (black w/green sparkles), a skein of one of her early homespun (the yellow w/purple), 2 circular needles, a cute Tigger applique (which Justin held up with a 'what the heck is this for?' face), 3 new knitting books and a pair of hand-knit pink socks! She also sent fun swag from her trip to DC from the Supreme Court and Smithsonian Air & Space Museum (inside joke about pink shirt). All-in-all, a super fun package! :) I'll post some pics once the sun comes up - i hate how they come out with the flash on.

Tigger modeling my new Smithsonian hat & my new hand-made socks.

Supreme Court pen & NASA patch, & Tigger applique

Sunday, July 13, 2008


In the Land of Women
Watched this when I got up at 4:30 in the morning with nothing else to do. Very good, but I loved Adam Brody in Gilmore Girls, so I went into it liking his character already. Interesting story and inviting characters, not a 'must see', but a good flick.

We are almost through the 7th season of GG, only a few more episodes to go. It has given me time to work on my/Justin's Blue Blanket and I am almost finished with skein #4. I'd say almost halfway done. I want to start so many new projects but I think I need to get some more needles! I really am lacking in the straights department and don't want to do everything on circulars, but I really wanted to wait for Knit Pick's Harmony Straights to come out. :) I also need the smaller 16" fixed circs to make hats and things, but money is tight. I may pick up a few sets after my next paycheck while Knit Picks has all of their books on sale for 40% off (since I missed Interweave's book sale), since if you buy $50 shipping is free. :) Will post if/when I do!!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Harry Potter Band-Aids & a Window Perch

Justin, laying on the couch last week, asked me to go get him a band-aid for his arm. He had picked off a scab and it was bleeding. As punishment for making me go all the way to get a band-aid, he got a glow-in-the-dark Harry Potter lightning bolt band-aid. Here is evidence!

Also, I finally bought Tigger a window perch for the computer/guest room at PetSmart to keep him off of my desk:

Here is how setting it up went.
9 pm - PREPARE - Attach Velcro strip to window sill and wait for it to set

8 am - TREPIDATION - Attach perch to strip & adjust legs to fit. Tigger remains stand-offish and will not even touch it.

9 am - INSPECT - I put a hand towel on the perch to make it smell like home & confuse the Tigger. I place him on it and he proceeds to check it's stability by attacking the legs.

10 am - PLACATE - He will stay on the sill side of the perch unless I leave, then he runs after me.

2 pm - ACCEPTANCE - He hasn't moved from this spot in an hour. :)

Yay! :)

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Dishcloths and wedding planning

I finished my set of ballband dishcloths this morning! I used up all but maybe 20 ft of the ombre and still have quite a bit of light blue left over - probably enough to make one more out of.

We had a fun 4th, our friends Rob & Brittany (married almost one month!) came over and we had drinks and lit off fireworks, and then watched some Gilmore Girls. I swear, I can get anyone hooked on my shows!! :) Justin got me margaritas (Cuervo Gold) so needless to say, my night was cheery!

When I showed him my finished dishcloths (and jumped around in joy) he asked me what project I was going to finish next and when I was wishy-washy about not starting any new ones so I needed to finish the ones I already had going he said that it sure would be nice if I finished HIS blanket!! I guess I will need to make a pink one for myself and have his/hers blankets!! :)

My BFF Jenni went over to David's Bridal and tried on dresses, in her attempt to force me to plan our wedding. :D Here's a sample of what I think looks good from her trip. I will try to get in and try on my own dresses soon!!

That's about it, just enjoying my 3-day weekend. We'll chill out around here today and probably start GG Season 6 and tomorrow I need to do some laundry. Fun! :)

Updates later if anything interesting happens.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Independence Day!

Well, I haven't been doing much in my knitting world lately except working on my first Ballband Dishcloth, which I think will end up as a Ballband Hand Towel. :) I've done about 4 repeats now and haven't messed up anything that I couldn't fix so I am really proud of myself! I haven't used dish cloths outside of my grandma's house (I prefer scrubby pads) so I'm not quite sure what I will use them for. Guest hand towels? Gifts? I haven't decided yet, but I'd like to make a matching set. NOW I understand why old ladies have stashes of doilies and wash cloths sitting around!!

I'm also pondering making a separate blog for personal stuff, but I don't think I'd use it as much. However - people that read my knitting blog may not want to read the personal stuff!! :) I will still ponder for a while, as I'm not the kind of person who has enough to blog about every day.

I still hope to finish scarves for my immediate family (including my soon-to-be in-laws) for Christmas presents, but I am going to have to sacrifice working on blankets or other projects, I think. Oh well! :) Next year everyone will get dish cloth/hand towel sets!! Gifts are good for honing skills, I feel like I'm ready to move on to more patterns and am excited to try a 'My So Called Scarf' because the pattern looks pretty easy. AND with each new pattern I master I impress Tracy that much more so that she will finally learn to purl and make cool stuff with me. (Because once you can knit and purl, you're set!)

I am hoping to go to the Knit Together this week. They meet every Thursday at a local church that is not anywhere near being on my way home, but I want to go and see all of the cool things they make that will make me feel like the beginner that I am. I don't think I can get Tracy-poo to go with me because she picks up Shawn (her 8-yr old son) from camp after work, but I still hope that I can work up the courage to go, even by myself.

That's about it for the news around here, I think I need to go clean house as we might have Rob & Brittany over tonight to set off fireworks.

Have a great holiday everyone!! :)

Saturday, June 28, 2008

KnitPicks Options Harmony Wood

Long title for an AWESOME set.

I finally bought down and bought this set after about 3 months of research, mostly because they offer 60" cables, and I wanted them to knit blankets!

They are slicker than Clover Bamboo needles, but have more grip than Boye Aluminum ones, so they are perfect in my book.

I've found that I really like having projects on circulars because they are easy to put aside on a moment's notice and put up, then come back to later. I made sure that I figured out early which side my yarn tail would be on when I went back to my project to avoid issues!

I bought this kit (pictured), a set of 60" cables (you get 2 cables for 3.99), a set of size 13 needles (for my Rainbow Afghan), the ID tags (so that you know what size needles you were working with in case you have to put a project aside for a while), and the view sizer (because the size of the needles aren't imprinted on them (the only complaint I have so far).

I've currently got 3 projects going on my KnitPicks - Hollie's Scarf, my Blue Multi Afghan, and my Rainbow Afghan.

All in all I am very happy with my set. I have only had them come unscrewed once, and after I had tightened them with the key it didn't happen again (hand tightening wasn't enough). The cables have very little memory, like the reviews that I read stated. An A+ all around! I only wish I could afford more and find a nice binder to keep them in!! :)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Flickr Meme

The rules:

a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker.

1. What is your first name? Amy
2. What is your favorite food? Chicken Fajitas
3. What high school did you go to? DeWitt
4. What is your favorite color? Cornflower Blue
5. Who is your celebrity crush? David Boreanaz
6. Favorite drink? Dirty Martini
7. Dream vacation? Maui
8. Favorite dessert? Brownies
9. What you want to be when you grow up? Astronaut
10. What do you love most in life? Tigger
11. One Word to describe you. Kind
12. Your flickr name. Aredhel (because Aredhelstar didn't yield results)

[[Edited because Jenni said I HAD to have my answers up.]]

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Starting up!

Well, I'm pausing from adding my projects and yarn to Ravelry to make a little post. I got quite a bit up tonight! :)

About me - My name is Amy and I started knitting about 2 1/2 years ago when my mom gave me a set of knitting looms. This last Christmas (2007) I finally graduated to needles and now there's no stopping me. I purchased a set of Knit Picks Harmony Wood Options Interchangeable Circular needles (along with 60" cables to make blankets and I LOVE them. Now I just need more 60" cables...

Now playing: OneRepublic - Stop & Stare
via FoxyTunes


Going to get this thang started. Hello world! :)