December 30, 2007


I have added a goal to 2008. It is Joy - or rather more joy. To make sure I reguarly make time to do things that bring me joy. This came about because today I headed into the sewing room, finally. JB went downstairs, all four dogs were downstairs. Even though I had some pattern work to do and that seemed to take forever, I did manage to get some actual sewing done. I have most of the top for the Brown Vogue jumper finished. I figured out that I can slip the dress over my head without installing a zipper so it will be finished shortly. I had forgotten how much cleaning and threading my machines, tracing and altering patterns, and sewing and pressing seams brings me joy. Today I was also able to take the big dogs for a walk to the local latte stand. It's a little over 2 miles round trip. I had no issues with pain - double yea - so more regular dog walking is in our future. Alright, JB is on the phone talking to his parents, so I'm going to head back downstairs and see if I can finish up the brown wool and possibly get the grey flannel pressed tonight too!

December 28, 2007


I'm thinking jumpers. Wednesday I get to go back to work. I say "get" because I'm actually quite excited about it. It's only fun to stay home for a month when you want to - not when you are forced to. Anyway, since I can sit comfortably and sew now - I am wanting to make some jumpers. The first one playing about in my mind is Vogue 8410. I have a nice boring piece of chocolate brown wool jersey that would be lovely made into the scoop neck jumper. I think I would make it knee length rather than ankle, but loverly just the same. I have some great turtlenecks to wear with it.
Next, I just adore Simplicity 3673. I picked up some embroidered gray flannel to make into the full skirted view. Photographed on top of the embroidered flannel is a piece of a darker gray interlock that would make a nice top. I had originally thought the interlock would look nice with the jumper, but looking at the photo I think it might be too matchy-matchy to look good. So, I'll have to find a nice power blue for a top. Finally I have this piece of olive green corduroy that I was thinking might work for the shorter, straighter version of this pattern. What do you all think? Too school girl in corduroy? Are you too old to wear a corduroy print at a 'certain' age? Or should I just make it up and try it, sorta the old "no harm, no foul." If it doesn't look right I've got one more piece of fabric out of the stash.
I now have 4 full days where I don't have to work from the sofa until I go back and get to sit at my desk. Which doesn't look too bad, I might add. I stopped by the office today (one of my first driving alone trips) and picked up a bunch of papers I had printed. Tonight I will photocopy them and get them out in tomorrow's mail. After that my time is completely my own (well except for the anniversary on Monday) until I go back into the office on Wednesday morning.

December 27, 2007

Dudley on Thursday

Apparently, I am a bad doggy mom. Most of the digital pictures are of Beau & Lucy. That is understandable since Beau has my heart. But Dudley is the first dog - he is the old man of the family and he acts accordingly. Dudley is in the front of the above picture with Beau behind him and Abby showing off her belly on the left. I thought I would take a page from Chan's book and share some old stories. When we first got Dudley he wasn't really a puppy. He was 11 months old and the breeder had kept him because she wanted to show him. He is beautiful, however, his front feet really turn out and he's very knock-kneed. So, she got rid of him. We are fairly confident in saying that her adult sons terrorized Dudley because he used to be afraid of his own shadow. Anyway - he was a wonderful dog. One of the funniest Dudley stories I have is the following. We were still living in our old house - it was summer, the back door was open and we had a large fenced yard with a beautiful lawn. Dudley loved to lay on the lawn in the sunshine. Well one Sunday afternoon I had been doing laundry. I had folded laundry for a family of 6 on the living room sofa when JB called me into the tv room to see something. I ended up sitting down with him watching whatever the program was. Mr. Dudley dog would come jump up on my legs then leave the room, then come back and jump up on me again. Over and over he did this. I just kept telling him I would go play in a minute. When I finally got up - the back yard was littered with JB's clean underwear. Apparently Dudley was taking them off the couch and into the backyard and coming to get me after each pair!! It was very funny. Here's a shot of Dudley hiney - heading out the doggie door, we figured of all the dogs, he would be the least likely to use it (afraid of his own shadow) but he was the first one through! Good Boy!

December 26, 2007

2008 Is Right Around the Corner

and I feel like I haven't accomplished much in 2007. So - here are some of my goals for the new year. *blog a little more regularly and a little bit more about sewing :) *try not to blog without photos (failing that one already) *sew with better quality fabric *attempt new things - whether it's knit pattern drafting, or sewing outside my comfort zone *get back into walking the dogs That should do it - we don't want to overwhelm things too much!

December 25, 2007

Seasons Greetings!

Hope this holiday season finds everyone warm, enjoying time with their loved ones and doing things they enjoy. May the spirit of the season last throughout the year.

December 22, 2007

Bad Bad Blogger

In my rush to get everything finished and out the door last night - I didn't take any pictures at all of the loads of recovery knitting that I completed and gave as gifts to my co-workers at our Christmas Party last night. UGH. So, let me tell you all what I did. First ~ I made Charmed out of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran color 611, a beautiful deep red. I had a total of 6 balls. I worked the scarf out of three, but knew that I wanted a version of fetching that would match the scarf. So, I figured that out and had 3 rows of cables running up the back of the hands on both mitts. After finishing the mitts, I completed the scarf will all of the remaining yarn. It ended up about 5 balls long. These were given to the Boss' partner and she loved them. Next Up ~ a narrow version of the Feather & Fan scarf from KPPPM sock yarn. When I started this scarf I had in mind something very long and lacy. I had 2 hanks of the KPPPM in a beautiful pink, blue, purple mix. I went flipping through my page a day knitting patterns and selected Feather & Fan. I cast on for 2 fans wide and started knitting, knitting, knitting. What is it about knitting that makes me ignore my better judgment? I knew exactly what I wanted, but I wasn't getting it with the pattern 18 stitches wide. So, after knitting almost the entire first hank, I ripped it and started over. This time only casting on 26 stitches - narrowing the pattern enough that I was still getting the lacy effect of the feather & fan, but the not the width from having 2 pattern repeats. Much better. I knit each hank and then did a 3 needle bind of on a 4th row of the pattern to join both ends. Love it! So did the recipient. This is the woman who was hired in the Spring as my new assistant and man has she saved the day - without her I wouldn't have had any recovery time at all! Finally - there are 2 male attorneys in our office. I made each of them a version of Dashing. As I am inclined to do, I couldn't just knit them according to the pattern. Well actually I did, I made an entire pair - which I loved following the pattern exactly - but then I ripped them. You see the pattern calls for 32 rows in 4" and I was getting 26 rows in 4" which when you are making a glove makes quite the difference. They were beautiful, a tobacco brown color, merino wool, and almost opera length - perfect for me, but not so much for a man who wears a dress shirt most days! So into the frog pond they went. This pair was closest to the actual original dashing pattern, I just shorted the number of row between cable and did a total of 5 cables - 3 first cable rows and 2 second cables. Placing the thumb on the same round as the 2nd second cable round. I thought they might be a little too tight - But my Italian coworker (after telling me these were great! Now he wouldn't have to ruin his expensive gloves changing his tire) said they were perfect. Of course he was kidding about wearing them change his tire - he might wear them when he calls Tripple A to come change the tire for him! Last up the pair for JD2 - same Dashing, cast on 50 stitches, worked in 4x1 rib, only placing a back and front cable right next to each other going up the back of both hands. These where done if a mottle grey merino. There were also a couple of sewing projects for the boss - but those didn't get to see the camera flash either - bad blogger!!!!

December 21, 2007

Dogs on Thursday - A Day Late

Because I love dogs and love putting packages together for other people, as well as receiving great packages. I joined the Dogs on Thursday, Holiday Ornament Swap. Nicole was my partner and I received her box on Tuesday. When I first opened the box, I saw this great dog printed tissue. How cute is that?
Nicole put a great box together - but this is my new favorite Christmas ornament. Can you see it? It's a fireplace, complete with wreath, fire, stockings and a bone. The bone says the year and the stockings have each of the dogs names on the cuffs. The names are in order of how we got the dogs and the dogs that have middle names - Abigail Jane & Beauregard James - have their full names on their stockings. How freakin' adorable is that?
Also in her box, a very cute yarn wreath ornament, to jars of homemade dog treats (which they love), some cute dog sticky notes and matching pens. As well as PetFinder bookmarks, information about having your dogs' hair spun, and load of Nichole's own magnets and such that match her blog logo. Very cute. Nicole - I love it all. Thank you so much. I hope you and yours enjoy your package as much.
Finally - let me leave you with an actual picture of a dog. Since Beau & I have been recovering together. Beau has decided that he should get to lay on my chaise lounge which is in the front bay window. In the photo you can see my knitting set up on the table behind him, vase of needles, basket of finished knits and currently the table top has stacks of finished holiday gifts. But look at him. Lately - I have to get the spray bottle to get him down - just because it hasn't been comfortable for me to sit there lately doesn't mean he gets to take it over. Goober boy!!!

Stunt Stitcher Shipped!

First Up - Amy Butlers A-line skirt. Now I know that many of you love this skirt. I am not one of those many. I am a girl, and I'm made of curves. The only 'darts' for shaping and fitting this skirt are incorporated into the side seams. That isn't enough for my figure. I tried and tried to make this work, ultimately cutting the size extra small and just making it work. I cut the fabric on the cross-grain so that the rows of paisleys would run vertical instead of horizontal - this was deliberate because I didn't want a line of paisley pointing to my hips!
Next - Apron side A (with side B turned back to show) over the A-line. This was a cute and fun little project. It was quick to make, even if I don't understand the purpose of wearing an apron over jeans. The added extra to the apron was topstitching around the entire garment with heavy blue cotton thread. It pulls the blue from both prints and adds just a smidge.
This is the back of the apron - side B. I made no attempts to match the pattern. If I was making this again - I most certainly will. However, this will be hanging from a ceiling and most likely being enjoyed by Camilla kids as they get taller - before they fill out and get hips! For another version, I would probably add the banding to both the front and the back of the apron pieces and just gather a little bit more into the waistband. To my eye, this side looks like it's missing something without the red bands running down the edges under the bow - in this picture those red bands shown
in the photo above are in the back.
The final skirt is the layer skirt. This one was really easy to make. Deliberate raw edges, although the instructions have you make a conventional hem in the bottom - huh? Why would you hem it when you have raw edges at each layer? Okay, so I didn't hem it. I ran another row of stabilizing stitches above the hem, cut the the hem off and then ran the skirt through the washer and the dryer. Again, if making this for actual wearing purposes there are tons of things that would need to be done differently.
All in all, I enjoyed making these skirts and I hope that Miss C is happy with them.

December 15, 2007

Just Another Photoless Post

Well I've been busy recovering, and it's hard work. These last 3 days I've had more pain then when I first came out of surgery, I don't understand it, but then I guess I don't have to. It must mean I'm healing. I have a package almost ready to head off to Crazy Miss C, full of finished Stunt Stitcher obligations - finally! I feel like such a bum about that taking so long. I have also finished a boat load of handknit holiday gifts. I only have 2 more to finish. Some fingerless mitts based on Dashing, I have my copy of Nicky Epstein's knitting on the edge out to find a different cable. I made one pair of Dashing almost completely according to the pattern and I think they are too long. I made end up remaking them after I gift them. Since they are for a co-worker this is doable. Today, I am going to sew - even if it means that I have to break out the pain pills again! I have crafts to finish people - there is a holiday coming up. I also have 2 swaps that I committed to, both essentially with Christmas deadlines, and I've done no crafting for my partners. This is not okay. So, once JB heads into the dealership to work on a car for a friend, then I will round up the dogs, plug The Santa Clause into the dvd player and get down to business. Happy sewing, knitting, crafting, decorating, relaxing - or whatever it is you do to bring you happiness during the holiday season. Also, if you are so inclined, head on over to Chan's blog and welcome Sissy to the family. She is a beauty!

December 12, 2007

Beau Is Finally Feeling Better!

eta: I LOVE MY VET! I just got off the phone with the vet herself, not one of the techs, the vet who did Beau's surgery. The first thing she said was "you can exhale now." She got his path report back today and it was a benign tumor of blood vessels. Completely harmless, completely removed. She then stayed on the phone long enough to ask how he was doing and how I was doing. It is so important to have a vet that you trust. How do I know you ask? Oh, wait, let me start at the beginning. On the Saturday of Thanksgiving weekend - we found an egg sized lump on Beau's back. He saw the vet on Monday, and while she assured me it was nothing, it was not a fatty tumor, but she was sure it was most likely a blocked gland. Essentially - he had a pimple under his skin. Even though it was nothing, she thought it would be best if we removed it, especially considering it had appeared out of nowhere and was quite large. So, he was scheduled for surgery on December 7th. I was able to very carefully drive him to the vet and one of the techs helped him out of the car. Of course he was "absolutely charming" for her. For me he would have pulled me right into the vet. His 106# pulling me along with him, I'm sure whimpering in pain. He came through his surgery with flying colors. Now, when you look at him you can say "that's some bad haircut Beau." (If you watch House - at the very end of the credits, these two cartoon character's pop up and one says "that's some bad hat Harry.") Luckily for Beau, we are recovering together, so he's been able to stay in the house with me all day long. All the dogs are loving it and I'm glad, because it's been cold! Anyway, this is how I know he's feeling better. This morning after eating, he ran downstairs (normal) and went outside. But, he stayed outside for about 45 minutes, walking around, checking the perimeter of the yard, and baying at shadows moving in the woods. We don't have the path report back yet, but he's feeling better :)

December 8, 2007

Maybe Being Out of Commission

isn't sooo bad.
This is what the office sent me. A beautiful arrangement in a winter themed snowman pot. Very cute.
This is what JB brought when he came to see me at the hospital. They are lovely and look how cool that vase is. He couldn't find an arrangement he liked, so he picked a loose bunch, bought a vase, begged the florist for a ribbon and some water and arranged it himself. It really is lovely. This is what The Musical One brought when she came by. It is a wonderfully fluffy, soft teddy bear. Beau & Lucy both think it should be theirs but dog slobber ruins bears!
This is what The Princess sent me. A wonderful tin of Lavender & Chamomile Tea along with lavender bath salts. I'm sure she'll enjoy using the bath salts when she's here at Christmas. This is what my boss brought when she and her partner came to visit me in the hospital. Flannel PJs. Originally they had picked them up for a Christmas gift, but since I'll be living in loose flannel pants for a while longer, they decided I needed them now! Look at how cut that print is. Of course they couldn't remember where they bought them. This is what I bought for myself! After seeing Debbie, Belinda, and Teri's version of Ottobre tops, I had to have this! Look how cute - tied up with a piece of stretch lace. I love it. Does anyone know if these are all the issues of Ottobre Woman available?

December 6, 2007

Dogs on Thursday - Photos!

First up - Miss Lucy. She did not know what to think about this slimy stuff between her toes, but let me tell you she didn't like it! Next - Dudley stuck 2 feet in. His little legs are so short that it was easier to get both his feet then trying to get just one. Beau positioned himself so that 2 feet were easier than 1. So both boys got a pair of prints and the girls only got one. Finally - the doggy equivalent of The Princess got to put her stamp on the sidewalk. Then it was the humans turn. You can see that we are very brave - I just dropped leashes and put the dogs into a sit/stay. The bloods listen - the bassets not so much.
Stolen from Summerset here's a couple of parting shots. Recently we bought Miss Abigail one of those tiny little round doggy beds. She doesn't like sharing with anyone and she really likes being curled up - perfect answer - nobody fits with her and she can curl up and be warm. Well yesterday - Lucy decided she wanted to sleep in the little bed. I was so amazed that her very large doggy body fit in the bed that I braved going downstairs to get the camera. When I got back she lifted her head and gave me this look. Do you think I was bothering her? If you're done now - I think I'll go back to sleep - hrrrmpftttt!

December 4, 2007

Having A Hard Time

doing nothing. However, the way I've felt these last few days aren't encouraging a great deal of activity. Thank you all for your well wishes and support. It really means a lot to me. So, I'm doing a fair bit of reading, lots of blog surfing, a good bit of internet shopping (for myself and holiday gifting), tons of knitting, and a little bit of sleeping. Yesterday, Beau decided he needed to check on me and make sure I was okay - but putting his big foot right on my abdomen. I yelped, JB jumped up, started to yell at the dog, but I stopped him, Beau didn't mean to hurt me. For the rest of the evening, every time I even breathed heavy Beau would get up to check on me and make sure I was okay. Today, JB went back to work. He carried the laundry basket downstairs for me - just so I didn't get the bright idea to bring it down myself. I am going to do my best to just leave it there in front of the washing machine. He's getting a little desperate for jeans, but heavy jeans might be a little too much. Holiday knitting is coming along and I just keep adding to the list - since I seem to be doing nothing but sitting and knitting. Here's what the list looks like: *Red Debbie Bliss cabled scarf & fingerless mitts {scarf half done} *KPPPM Feather & Fan Scarf {1/4 done} *JB's Holiday Sweater {body done to start of sleeves} *The Princess Gift - done! *Purple socks for a friend - done! *Scarf for The Musical One {needs to be blocked} *Socks for The Musical One - done! I have a couple of sewing gifts that need to be completed, but they will have to wait until I can bend in half. Enough whining. Again, thank you all for your well wishes, you have no idea how it has brightened my days :)

December 1, 2007

I'm Not Looking for a Pity Party - Warning - Too Much Information to Follow!

but I thought I'd clue everyone in just in case you all were wondering why I wasn't sewing! I haven't been feeling very well lately. When I last had blood drawn my hematocrit was 21. That's really low, dangerously low. Anyway, my doc sent me of to see and OB/GYN who did a few tests on Tuesday and decided that I need to have a little surgery on Friday. The little surgery turned out to be a hysterectomy (by my choice) as it was the only option that would solve all of the female issues in one fell swoop! So, yesterday morning I checked into the hospital and they removed all my girly parts. I may be laying a little low for the next little while - at least until I'm off narcotics. Everything went just fine and I'm home now, laying about with the dogs, knitting and just basically taking it easy. It won't be easy for me to be still, but I'll do the best I can. Camilla - the stunt stitcher skirts are almost done! Hopefully I can finish them up and have them out to you soon!!!!

November 29, 2007

Dogs on Thursday

Photoless - but here, none the less. While The Princess was here surprising us - they were also pouring new concrete sidewalks right outside my office. She got better pictures than I did, but it doesn't matter because they are all still in the camera and I'm feeling too lazy to go downstairs and download them. Anyway - back to the story. So, The Princess was here and I just got home from lots of killing time and running errands when the phone rings. It's my friend B from the office telling me that they are pouring the new sidewalks. So, The Princess and I load 4 dogs into the Jeep. first stop, coffee for all (no, not the dogs!) a little visiting with the guy who owns the coffee shop (The Princess used to work there), then off to the office. We unloaded 4 dogs, pealed back the plastic and stuck dog feet into the concrete, one at a time. We got a pair of Beau feet, a pair of Dudley feet and one each of the girls. Well - technically that's not correct because Abby-doodle walked all over B's foot print so there are a ton of dainty little female basset feet - unlabeled. The Princess labeled all the footprints and we took photos. We also made a 'pair' of our feet - her right and my left. I promise to add photos later :)

November 24, 2007

It's Amazing What a Girl Can Do

When She Just Does It! The Stunt Stitcher skirts have been languishing in my sewing space. I have been feeling overwhelmed, out of sorts, some might even say depressed. Anyway - yesterday, after reading Carolyn's post on stalling, I realized I was doing the same thing. I then got up, made a fresh cup of tea, refilled my water glass, rounded up the dogs and headed downstairs. First I did the last of the stalling tactics - updated the checking account. Then I headed over to the sewing space. I moved dog toys out of the way, moved the barricade (which is always there to keep Lucy the Goat from eating yarn, fabric, patterns and other notions), plugged in the iron, and away I went. First I hemmed the outer skirt of the A-line skirt that has been hanging out the longest. Then I measured, trimmed and bound the lining of the same skirt. Next - pressing fabric. Wow! That really felt good - crazy I know. I got the apron cut out and both reversible panels made before JB got home from work and it was time to make dinner. Today, after a quick run to the grocery store, I plan on finishing the apron and starting on the last skirt. JB is working today and there is no one to whine that I'm not sitting with them. Sunday - I plan on sewing too. Heck with him, I could whine that he isn't sitting with me, too! Why do I have to give up my small pleasures? Right now, I'm dying to do some online fabric shopping. However, with the holidays upcoming and the recent addition of the new water heater, my shopping is a little limited. I still think I might go looking :) As an aside - do any of you see the current Tractor Supply Company commercials? I love them! There is one where the dogs are talking, explaining their lives. They also do one from the perspective of a pair of working man's hands, and a pair of boots. If you see them - enjoy.

November 23, 2007

Bad, Bad Doggy Mom

Well - it is partially JB's fault too. This week I've just been feeling "off." Monday I was really sick, Tuesday I went to work in a fog, Wednesday JB was sick. Well, Wednesday morning when I fed the dogs I noticed we were getting low on food. But - I had other things on my mind. Remember the water heater went out? Which we are replacing with a tankless water heater (by the way). FYI - it's totally green, you get a tax rebate for purchasing one, it takes up less space, will cut costs on our gas bill overall, and it is being installed on Monday. Anyway, by the time the guy from the Energy company was gone, JB was feeling well enough that he wanted to run errands with me. We still had to pick up our fresh turkey (which had ice crystals inside it!), buy groceries, stop by my office and the bank. With JB in tow - I only made it to the office, the bank and then to get the turkey. By now - it was almost 5 and knitting knight starts at 5! Right about then, he remembered that he had a chiro appointment. We didn't have time to run by the house, get cars and go our separate ways. So, off I go to the chiropractor with him. Finally, I get to Knitting Knight, where much laughter, talking, eating, drinking, show & telling goes one, but seriously - not alot of knitting. On my way home, I'm thinking, I should stop for dog food, but I think there might have been enough to get us through Friday morning. JB would have called me if there wasn't. I did stop and get people food. Thursday morning I'm up with the houndies. Off I head into the garage to feed them. OPPS! Not enought food to fill their bowls. Well, I'll add some soft to it this morning and punt for their dinner. Great. This Friday morning, they are all laying on their beds, jumping everytime I get up and starving because I can't feed them until the guys get her to install the loaner water heater - YEA! and then I can run to the pet store for food. They don't understand. And because I'm really a bad doggy mom - they got extra treats from JB this morning. Cookies and some icky turkey parts. They definately are spoiled dogs - but don't understand why I won't feed them.

November 22, 2007

Thankful Thursday

Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate. Hope everyone has a chance to hug their loved ones and remember why they are blessed.
As my life has changed this year, I have realized that sometimes it's the really small things in life that I need to remember to be thankful for, such as:
*the sun shinning through the stripped candle on the fireplace and how pretty it looks
*four dogs snuggling on their beds, snoring and healthy
*The Musical One who is grown into a beautiful young lady who is responsible and taking care of herself in the world
*The Princess who is raising someone else's children, because she thinks it's fun. She actually puts thought into how those kids should end up.
*JB - who loves me even when I'm sick and the house is a mess
*knitting friends, blogging friends, and old friends from high school
*building our Christmas puzzle
Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

November 21, 2007

It's Been a Rough Week

and it's only Wednesday Morning! Monday I woke up sick. I had a horrible case of the flu. I called in sick to work. I have never called in sick - I have gone home early with a sore throat, but never stayed home all day. I laid on the couch and only moved to rush to the bathroom. I haven't been that sick in a long time! It was horrible. Tuesday was much better, although I was still really weak. I did go to work with the intention of working half a day. I ended up staying all day, but it's okay it makes it a little easier to be off until Next Wednesday. JB plays WhirlyBall on Tuesday nights, so I worked on his Christmas sweater while he was gone then switched to a Christmas sock when he got home. He then informed me that the water heater had died. Then he started feeling ill. This morning, he called in sick for work - in the 15+ years I've known the man, he has never called in sick - not once. Today, I still need to firm up our Turkey Day for 2 menu, go shopping, pick up the turkey (which I hate, but JB loves), meet with the guy from Washington Energy Services about a new water heater, do a little pre-baking (cornbread for stuffing, pie) and hopefully make it to knit knight. That will of course depend on how JB is feeling and how the pre-baking goes. Hope you all have a more relaxing Pre-Turkey Day than I am - good thing I took a vacation day today!

November 19, 2007

The Princess Surprise!

So, I had Friday off - I got up with JB, fed the dogs, puttered around reading blogs. Then I finally got out of the house. You see I had to have a fasting blood test done on Friday morning, and I didn't want to put it off too long. Leaving the house, I called The Princess (as I do every morning) and sang a combination of "Good Morning" and "Zippidy Do Dah" because I was leaving a little later than normal and it was already afternoon on the East Coast. First stop - Weight Watchers. It was time for the November weigh in. I compulsively weigh myself every morning. I knew how much I would weigh on their scale within a couple of pounds. You see, I weight about 5# less first thing in the morning. I was positive I would be about 13# below goal! Yippee - under goal - first time in months. Unfortunately - no Yippee! for me - I was 7# over goal. I do not understand how my home scale can be 20# off! Okay - so off to the hospital to donate tubes of blood! That was a quick stop - no real knitting time even! I then talked to The Princess again. She asked what I was doing and I told her "just putzing around" how about you guys today? She said something similar. We hung up and away I went. I stopped by the dealership where JB works to talk to him and he asked me to hang out for 20 minutes or so and go to lunch with them. So I did. It was fun. Upon leaving there, I talked to The Princess again. This time she had some lame story about how her friend needed a blanket out of her closet and could I just call her when I got home. Sure - whatever. Next stop on the errands run - the bank. Then the pet store for cookies. Then I stopped at JoAnn's. I must have talked to The Princess another 5 times. At one point, she left a message with the dogs howling in the background. I called her back and asked how she got howling dogs - she said she found a clip on the Internet. Finally, driving down our street I see my dad's car. I slow down and am prepared to roll my window down and talk to him, but he just drives past me. hrpmppp! Then he comes back down the street and he has The Princess in the car with him. Apparently, she had a bonus day off work and decided to fly home for a longish weekend - without telling anyone but her friends. it was good to see her, but I wish we were a little more important than her friends. Maybe at Christmas time!

November 15, 2007

Dogs on Thursday

Here is Miss Lucy modelling hand knits. Let me tell you - she was none to happy about it. Beau was checking to make sure she was okay. Lucy couldn't wait to get it off! The pattern is Calorimetry from the knitty archives. The yarn is some wonderful Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran left over from a baby sweater. The hat/headband took the entire ball and was knit in an evening of television watching. That's another Christmas gift finished! And while I could get Beau to sit very nicely for a photo shoot - he was completely unwilling to model the hat! He wanted nothing to do with it and since it's a very soft white - I didn't want him to goober it up and called Lucy in to do the job.

November 12, 2007

What is it about Rainy Days?

I have absolutely nowhere that I have to be today. Nowhere! Can you hear me? NOWHERE! It is pouring down rain here in Western Washington and "they" are predicting another windstorm with gusts of up to 70 mph. All I want to do is get out of the house! How silly is that? Instead I'm going to head downstairs with a nice cup of tea. Attempt to finish updating my blog and then sew. Yep - you heard that right - actual sewing coming out of my sewing space. Go figure! Hope where ever you are - you aren't feeling stir crazy and penned in - like I am right now.

November 11, 2007

All the Cool Kids are Doing it!

And now so am I! I got my Ravelry invite. I am GMarie. I'm hoping The Musical One will be stopping by soon. I'm trying to add a photo to my header and change things around on the ol' blog - but it's not working so well for me. Anyone wanna help me?

November 9, 2007

Lazy Fall

Well I haven't been doing much of anything lately. I managed to just sit on my hiney while JB was at whirlyball and not make it to the sewing space. I will get down there this weekend! On the holiday front - I will not sew any holiday gifts this year! I am planning on knitting some to that end I'm ahead of the game. I have 2 1/2 gifts finished. Well one gift is a pair of socks and I have one finished but not the other. It's close though! Did I ever tell you that Miss Lucy Goat Dog ate the center of my ball winder? Yep! The last time we had poker at our house, they were locked downstairs. My friend D was here thatnight, but because the light downstairs (well anywhere I sit to knit really) is shitting my house - we stayed upstairs in the living room. I'm making a pitch for a couple of Ott Lights for Christmas - I big floor standing one and a smaller tabletop light. Anyway - one of the ladies who comes to poker is truly afraid of big dogs so we try to keep the dogs away from her. I don't believe in deliberately terrorizing people! Well Lucy wanted to be where the action was and couldn't get upstairs, so she found something to chew on. This is what she does when she's anxious to be where you are and can't get there. So yep - she at the center of my ball winder. Do you know how hard it is to wind a ball of yarn without the center in the winder - yep. Impossible. Do you know what I am dying to start knitting with right now? Of course - anything in a hank that needs to be wound. That's about all I've got right now. I have a 3 day weekend (Monday is a holiday); a 3 day work week and then another 3 day weekend (regular Friday off) coming up. Look for progress photos from the sewing space - or else a call of "Help, I've fallen and can't get up!"

November 6, 2007

Time to Cut Bait

You are all aware of the old saying "Fish or Cut Bait" right? Well I have decided that it's time for the Stunt Stitcher to cut bait. It occurred to me the other day that the reason I'm avoiding the sewing space is those darn Amy Butler Skirts. Let me explain. To quote a very wise lady from my Neighborhood ASG meetings I'm a girl and I'm made from curves. With that in mind, let me say that it is very hard to make any skirt with no darts fit and look good. I have been sewing garments long enough to know that darts are what make a flat piece of fabric fit a 3-dimensional shape and look good. If I were to add darts to the back pieces of skirt, I could make it fit and look good. However that is not the goal For . This . Project. When I offered to make garments from quilting cottons it was a very self-less offer. Miss C recently opened a dry-goods brick and mortar store in her home town. She sells yarn, knitting supplies, quilting cottons, and patterns. She teaches classes on knitting and sewing. Miss C knits and sews quilts - but not garments. As a garment sewer who has no real interest in quilting but loves the fabulous quilting cottons available I offered to sew some sample garments for her. Miss C jumped at the offer - her only condition - I sew the garments in a size to fit me and after being displayed for a few months she would return them to me as "payment" for my labor. So now my very self-less offer has turned greedy! I can own some beautiful skirts made from Amy Butler fabrics. One of my favorite skirts is a lined Kwik Sew made from AB cotton. Don't get me wrong - I love Amy's patterns - she designs incredible bags and home dec items - I'm just not in love with her skirt pattern and continuing to attempt to make it fit me and look good is going to drive me crazy. Tonight while JB is off playing whirlyball with the guys - I'm going to recut the skirt to the smallest size, get the A-line sewn up and ready to ship off. Once I have that one done I will move onto the Layered Skirt and then the Apron. Hopefully I won't upset Miss C, but honestly my intent was simply to help her have some garment samples for her store - not to end up with clothing for me. See - time to cut bait!

November 4, 2007


Yesterday was the Annual Meeting for the Local Chapter of ASG. Since I'm a neighborhood group leader - I always feel compelled to go. Besides - it's good fun! Our meeting is always a little business, the election, a potluck, a silent auction and a fashion show. Why would anyone want to miss that? I made a modified pair of baby pink Fetching fingerless gloves. They were modified by adding a second cable row at the top and adding a few more rows for the thumbs. Unfortunately - I did not take photos. I know - I'm grounded. I also made a fake fur teddy which was requested by the lady who bought one I made several years ago. Her dog loved the first one and has practically killed it. She says it's really grody and he needed a new one. The final bid on the bear was $20! I came home with a stack of Cynthia Guffey books - Volumes 1 and 2 of Finishing Techniques; Volumes 2 through 5 of Precision Sewing Techniques, Volumes 1 and 2 of Cynthia's Simply guide to Master Tailoring; and finally Festive Machine Embroidery. I got all of that for $12! I purchased these books with the last post in mind - the one about making an epic project and stepping up my skills. My plan is to start reading through them, and then decided if I need the missing volumes. I will also sign up for and take classes from Cynthia at our local Sewing Expo in Puyallup in February. There are so many 'experts' out there and conflicting opinions that I plan to start with one - incorporate her techniques and then learn from another. Right now - however, I'm headed out to the Mall to get a hair cut! Happy sewing everyone.

October 31, 2007

Rock & Hard Place

Lately I feel like I'm whining - alot! And here I am to do some more! In the wonderful world of sewing blogs there are several people I admire. I admire how helpful they are - regardless of the question. I admire their creations and I aspire to be more like them. Of my cyber-sewers/virtual-friends, I repeatedly go-to Carolyn for inspiration. She inspires me to try using wonderful natural fiber fabrics (wool, silk, linen) that I am petrified of. She inspires me to take things a little more slowly and enjoy the process. She also encourages a greater quality of work. Another of these go-to friends is Shannon. This girl cranks out some fabulous garments. Again encouraging me to cough up the dough for the fabrics that petrify me. But she does garments quickly - instilling the belief that while an "epic" garment is always a fun learning experience. Getting something finished that fits well is equally important. There are so many others that inspire me on a daily basis. I love getting comments on my posts - they are encouraging. I also really enjoy the relationships that are built when I leave a comment and the blog writer responds to my comment. I have built a great network of friends across the County and if I ever get to travel you bet I will look you up and do my best to meet in person - I am not afraid! Anyway - I guess the point of this post is that I feel stuck between a rock and hard place lately. I want to make the fabulous garments that Carolyn is producing but I want to do it fast, using the serger to finish seams, getting things done and into the closet. I believe I'm going to take a Shannon approach and try to get some things finished and also begin an "epic" project to learn and improve some new skills. Thanks for the inspiration.

October 29, 2007

Things I'm Missing and Things I Love

Cara of January One fame recently asked what part of your life have you let slip away and now are ready to rededicate time to? This question struck me as really profound and actually shocked me right out of lurking on her blog to actually posting a comment with an answer! I never feel very confident posting comments when someone routinely gets hundreds of comments! Anyway - The things I'm missing: ::Sewing. I haven't spent near enough time bonding with my sewing machine lately. I feel like nothing I touch works rights, crafts don't have the same appeal as garments - and lately I can't fit myself, so I've been knitting socks! I am ready to rededicate part of my life to sewing. ::Walking the Dogs. JB and I had a pretty good routine down. We would walk the dogs, then I would fix dinner followed by telly. This was really nice, we'd get outside, enjoy some fresh air, get to watch the dogs enjoying the neighborhood smells and visit about our days - I miss that. We are headed into the dreadful Seattle Rainy season, but I'm ready to get out and walk the dogs again. ::Exercise. I never in a million years thought that exercise would be a part of my life that I missed, but it truly is. I miss the feeling of accomplishment, the tired muscles after completing a difficult or new routine. Being able to brag because I 'had' to go to bigger hand weights. I miss the energy and stamina that working out gave me. I'm ready to start getting up before dawn again (5:00 a.m.) and get back into my workout routine. Things I love: ::Sitting in the bay window knitting, watching the leaves fall and the dogs romp in the front yard with JB ::Beauregard bringing his 'favorite' toy upstairs with him and watching him trying to get somebody to play with him ::Lucy's cuddling and her sweet, sweet face ::Curling up with JB watching tv ::Fixing a nice meal - even if it isn't pretty

October 24, 2007

I Owe Thank Yous - Again

First, I want to thank everyone for the birthday wishes. I had a nice relaxing day - doing nothing. The dogs had a good time at the park and JB is learning to enjoy the yarn store! It's all good! Next, last week I received a package from my friend Blogfree Jessica. She sent a peppercorn dip mix, some wonderfully smelling vanilla lotion (vanilla is my absolute favorite scent!), more lotion, Burt's Bees Lip Balm, Vera Bradley "papers" and those super cute dog appliques. No seriously - see how cute they are? There are 2 paw prints and a bone. I have no idea what I'll do with them, but they'll be here when I finally think of something and am ready.
Going back to work after having 4 days off is never fun. However - my office made it so! My desk was organized and there was a big white box on it. Inside that box was this beautiful brown Coach bag. It's not signature - but I've never been big on paying someone to advertise for them - so this is perfect! I switched the contents of my current purse over this morning. Gosh - I really like this bag. Look - the lining is purple! How neat is that? Also included was a matching wristlett - also lined in purple. Later in the afternoon a florist appeared with a very pretty live plant arrangement from another attorney's office that we work really closely with. They sent me flowers. Now I have cards to write.
Oh and The Princess wrote a very nice post to honor me on my birthday - I love you kiddo!!!

October 23, 2007

I Swear

the more time I have off the less I get done. Friday I barely moved from the couch all day. We were having huge weather - rain, hail, thunder and lightening. And I have a big dog who is scared of thunder - baby!
I did manage to make these pumpkin muffins and two loafs of pumpkin bread. I love pumpkin baked goods! After pulling my bread out of the oven - I finally headed down to the sewing room and finished the last summer skirt - which won't get worn until next year as it's now too cold. But here it is: Saturday I headed to the home of one of our local ASG Members and helped with the sewing up party for the Banquet favors. There was a lovely lunch which included a fabulous chocolate bunt cake. I stopped and bought groceries and then finally got home with just a little bit of time to spare before JB's poker people showed up. Thankfully, JB was doing the housework by the time I got home! I finished The Princess' Christmas gift but I can't show you that! Sunday we spent a lazy morning. In the afternoon we went out to the Digital Camera show and JB got a new Canon Rebel XTi for his birthday - coming up on Thursday. I'm kinda excited, maybe my blog pictures will be better soon! After spending lots of money on the camera we came home, watch some freaky Jodi Foster movie while I knit on the purple gift sock. You can't really see the pattern or anything, but you get the idea that I've got a long sock! I have the heel flap finished and the heel turned and am now working on decreasing the gusset. Thankfully the recipient of this sock has a small foot! Monday, dawned bright and clear. I had 4 dogs jumping on me to wake me up - Happy Birthday! 2 Adults and 4 dogs in a queen size bed means that my kidneys were stepped on, I was layed on, I had dog hair in my mouth and all over the place. I ended up with a few battle wounds - but it's not an everyday occurrence, so it was okay. We then took the dogs to the dog park. They had a blast - we walked around the park for an hour while the dogs ran and got rid of their energy. More home and knitting time, more errands - including a stop at the local yarn store and some new Lana Grossa sock yarn. You can't see it in the picture, but the yarn on the left is color 8007 - blues, oranges, browns and the one on the right is 8005 which is purples, greys and creams. Both are for gift socks for this holiday season. Yea right!

Finally - JB took me to dinner at Applebee's for my birthday. While we were there - I was busily picking up my gusset stitches, when I snapped one of my very pretty little Blondwood, size 0 Sox Stix. I wanted to cry!

Oh, and if you've sent me an email since say Saturday - I haven't got it. I am completely unable to log into my Comcast account. So, I'm not ignoring you - the computer sucks!

October 18, 2007

I Don't Have Much

to show lately. Since getting home from retreat, I haven't been in the sewing room. I have, however, been knitting. But I can't show you anything. I have a pair of gift sock started in Tofutsies (?). This stuff is a joy to work with and I'm loving the color. I almost want to keep them! Last night at knitting I got yarn for The Princess' Christmas gift. We know she reads this - so no pictures of this project. I finished my pink socks which were started in Hawaii, but have yet to be photographed. Guess I should get on that. I a four day weekend coming up. We do have lots of plans - Casino with the office on Friday night (knitting time for me); Poker Saturday night (sewing time for me); digital camera show on Sunday; dinner out with The Musical One on Sunday night; and then I'm not sure what we are doing on Monday - that's my birthday :) My plan is to spend Friday finishing the couple of skirts that I'm working on. Then get busy on the remaining curtain panels for the living room. I bought the fabric and made the panels for the dining room more than a year ago. I have needed JB's help to hang the new hardware and I've been waiting on that for a long time. So, I plan on blindsiding him tonight after dinner. Then Friday I can get those panels off my cutting table!!! I will have knitting with me at all times when we are in the car during the weekend. Hope the rest of you get some productive time in your sewing rooms.

October 16, 2007

Toes Up - A Pictorial

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