Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Word of the Day: Annoypid

Click Here for the Definition
(Sorry, but I couldn't get the whole picture to show up readable - just click it)

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Gripe: What has the world come to?

There are plenty of signs of the crumbling of humanity around us. Yesterday, I saw another. TV commercials advertising books.

Are we so wrapped up and plugged in to the television that we need reminders of those paper, word-filled things that used to be entertainment?

I saw two yesterday. One was for James Patterson's latest, Double Cross. The other was for Dean Koontz's new one, The Darkest Evening of the Year. Both are definately on my reading list, and had been before I saw these ads, but it was really sad to see that authors (or more likely, the publishers) have lowered themselves to advertising right alongside the Swiffer Wet-Jet and 1-900-dial-a-date.

So do me a favor. Go pick up a book. Your brain will love you for it.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

In case you were wondering

I added a list over there --------------->
It's things I enjoy and places I shop.
Y'know, Christmas and whatnot.
Not a hint, just a place to keep track :)
Oh and they're all clickable links, too.
For convenience, y'know. :)
Merry Merry!

Monday, November 19, 2007

#16 - In which our friend whines about her job...

It was bound to happen, wasn't it?

It's not that I don't like my job. I like what I do, fairly so. But I don't think I can do this the rest of my life (if nothing else, I'll run out of audiobooks to listen to).

I find myself often lately being envious of other people's jobs. In a perfect world, I would be able to support Annie and myself (and our pets, and future children) by doing any/all of the following things: crochet, plastic canvas, latch-hook, sudoku, listening to audiobooks, cooking (without a deadline/timeframe) or watching movies/television.

So, I guess I'm going to sign up on Etsy and see if I can make a few spare bucks selling dishcloths, potholders, and coasters. Pitty a girl and buy one, k?

Saturday, November 17, 2007

YotM November

My beautiful, loving, wonderful wife - who doesn't always "get me" but totally comes through when it counts - signed me up for a Yarn of the Month club (like I said, she's awesome). I just today opened up my first delivery (though apparently it came in the mail a couple days ago and has been buried under a pile of stuff on the couch).

It all came nicely packed in a Tyvek-like envelope with a pattern (knitting, unfortunately), a bi-monthly newsletter (this one about fibers from Camelids - camels, llamas, alpacas, etc), and four samples of yarn. No cheapie Red Heart Super Saver here, this was awesome stuff!!

It didn't come all crocheted up like this, by the way. Just wound in a little ball. I used the same process to crochet all four samples: My favorite hook (which isn't anything special, just an aluminum H hook, but it's purple) 10 sc wide and however many sc rows I could fit without running out of yarn.

The first one I pulled out and worked with was Camelino by Knit One Crochet Too. Felt like worsted weight, I'm pretty sure. It's 90% Merino Wool and 10% Camel. I've never worked with wool before, or camel for that matter, so this was a new texture to me. I'm not sure I like wool. But it was fairly soft and on a slightly larger hook, perhaps a J or something, probably would have draped nicely.

The second was Pastaza by Cascade Yarns. It was chunkier, not quite bulky but thicker than worsted weight, and 50/50 Llama and Wool. It's got some stray fibers (you can see it better on their website than in this picture) which I didn't like, but it was neat to try out anyway.

Third out of the bag was Camelon by Zaol, 80% Merino and 20% Camel. This was my second favorite of the four, not too fiberous and fairly soft. It's also about worsted weight (4.5 st/inch according to them, but that's knit).

Last, but by far my favorite, was Lacampo by Karabella Yarns. 60% Dehaired Llama, 40% Cotton, DK weight, and ooooooh so soft. This felt SO good to work with, I WILL buy it in the future. And until then, I will visit the website often to covet and drool.

And so ends my first month of YotM. My swatches have gone back in the plastic baggies they came in, and the baggies have gone into a Crocs shoe box. I'm going to keep them all and eventually patchwork afghan them.

Until next month (or, next blog)!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Go Granny!

This is Kim Werker. I don't know her (hadn't even heard of her til recently) but she seems like good people. She crochets and she likes sushi - she's already a winner in my book. Anyway, she doesn't know me either. What's funny is that she was just here in Portland not long ago and I found out about it the day after she left. My luck.

Anyways, this girl GETS IT! She totally rocks socks. This is why.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

We interrupt your regularly scheduled project...

Don't worry, Ma - it'll get done eventually!

But for now, this is my project of choice! It's the first arm of a shrug. Second arm is in progress. Once arms are complete, the back will be joined to them with a series of granny squares.

It's made with leftover Lion Chenille Thick & Quick that I had after I finished this afghan for my grandmother.

It's lovely luscious stuff. Mmmmmmmmm

Monday, November 12, 2007

Shock, then awe. The good kind.

I hope you're sitting down, because what I'm about to say might shock some of you.

I (occassionally) go to church.

Yep, there, I said it. Right out there for everyone and their dog to hear. The Bridge isn't really like church though. If you walked by the building we inhabit, you might think that some group of riff-raff had rented out the building to hold a rock concert/open mic/jam session. Well basically, it would be true.

The original source of this riff-raff are Ken and Deborah Lloyd. And yesterday in the Oregonian there was a HUGE (not to mention beautiful) article about Ken and his newest flock, HomePDX. Go read it and then come back.

I'm in awe of Ken and his vision. You should be too. Give give give. Ken does. And he's a badass. Don't you want to be a badass too?

Yes, there is crochet in this blog.

Current WIP is a poncho for my Dear Mother. She found a pattern she liked, and I just happened to have yarn in my stash (inherited from her) that would work. It's soft and lovely, and other than the colors being such that I wouldn't personally wear them, I'm totally coveting. She got this yarn at the Knittin' Kitten, and I might have to go and see if they have some more in more appropriate colors. It's niiiiice (that's for you, Ubbieten).

Other UFOs (UnFinished Objects) include my Hoodie from this pattern, done in Lion Suede, and a gift for someone who might read this so I'm not talking about it :) Both require the purchase of more yarn, but thankfully the Lion Suede is available from Smiley's for cheap. Well, relatively. Oh, and a bunch of small, quick projects also for gifts so that's all the info you get. Christmas, here I come!

Speaking of Christmas, I've started getting questions about gift ideas for Annie and I. So look for another blog soon with a list.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Three Wise Monkeys

No real context for this picture, but it's cute so I had to give it its own blog. Sorry it's so dark. Stupid Mac camera.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Living Like Rockstars (but without the drugs)

This past weekend, Annie and I decided to go live like rockstars for the weekend. Friday night we left right after I got off work (and after we stopped to gas up and replace her dead headlight) and headed for Lincoln City. After checking in at our hotel, we went up to the lounge and had Key Lime Martinis and appetizers for dinner. I forgot how much I love Key Lime Martinis. and actually I had a Chocolate Martini too that was pretty good, especially considering I am not typically a fan of chocolate.

Saturday morning we ordered room service for breakfast and sat in the room, enjoying our beautiful view of the ocean and the amazing food we ordered. Annie had Creme Brulee Stuffed French Toast, and I had Smoked Salmon Eggs Benedict. After breakfast we lounged around for a while. I read most of a really bitchin' book, Skinny Bitch, and Annie read Nikki Sixx's book, The Heroin Diaries. The morning passed nice and slow, just like beach time is supposed to do :) We finally got moving and went to our favorite Lincoln City Rock/Gem/Crystal shop, Crystal Wizard. Picked out a few cute things and a couple gifts for others, and headed down to the outlet mall. I was on the hunt for Crocs, but soon discovered that thanks to my square feet, I'd have to get a pair three or four sizes too long in order to get the width to fit. On the bright side, we also got to stop at Bath & Body Works and I got some more Mandarin Lime wash. MMMmmmmmm. We also stopped at a kite shop and bought a pretty rainbow-striped kite, but by the time we got back to the hotel it was time for dinner so we skipped kite flying for the day. We went up to Fathoms, the restaurant at the top floor of the hotel, and watched a beautiful sunset while we had dinner. Mussles Dijon for appetizer, more Key Lime Martinis of course, Sesame Crusted Ahi Tuna for Annie and Seafood Lasagne for me, and for dessert Bananas Foster for Annie (which she said wasn't that good - well how could it be good with bananas in it? ugh), and Pumpkin Creme Brulee for me. Drooooooool. SO good.

Sunday morning we just had cereal for breakfast, and then took off down to Newport. We stopped at a turnout just north of Depoe Bay and got an amazing view of the ocean and some great pictures.

I know Seagulls aren't much more than overgrown water pigeons, but they're so pretty sometimes :) In Newport we went down to the docks and Annie took some more pictures, then we stopped to see the NOISIEST Sea Lions you could ever imagine.

They were soo cute though!! They just laid around in big puppy piles, and it would be quiet for a minute and then one would start barking and they'd all get in on it. It was so fun. When we got back to the hotel, it wasn't quite time for dinner yet, so we went out onto the beach and flew our kite :)

We were pretty much the only ones on the beach, but we did get a bit of an audience of people in the hotel coming out on the balconies to watch us. Dinner that night was at Fathoms again, this time Annie had a Kona Coffee and Peppercorn Encrusted Filet Mingon (SOO good!) and I had the Cioppino that Annie had the very first time we went there, and it was delicious. Everything was great.

Monday morning Annie just HAD to have the Creme Brulee French Toast again so it was another dose of room service. I had an omelette with chorizo sausage and red bell peppers. It was only so-so. But the Bloody Mary was good :D

As we were leaving town, I said to Annie (like I do every time we go to the coast), "Let's go up to Seaside and get tattoos!" Well this time, instead of just laughing it off and thinking longingly of doing it, we actually DID IT! Well, sort of.

We got up to Seaside around 2 and stopped at the tattoo shop, a place called Lucky Dog Tattoo. The door was locked but the guy had just gone across the street for lunch and was just coming back as we turned to leave. We told him what we wanted, and he said he had someone coming in at 2:30 but to come back at 5 and he could take care of us. I wasn't sure about waiting around that long, but Annie talked me into it. We went to Taco Time for lunch (boy has THAT chain gone downhill) and mooched someone's Wi-Fi so Annie could blog about the upcoming tattoos. We went to another Crocs shop and Annie got a new pair of shoes, and then we went and blew $20 at the arcade playing SkeeBall.

We headed back to the tattoo shop early, about 4pm, only to find the sign turned off and the door locked.


So we called the number in the directory, and low and behold the guy answers. Conversation went something like this:

Me: "Um, yeah, hi. We came in earlier and you told us to come back at 5, and it's 4, and you're not here."

Asshole: "Yeah well I'm done for the day so you're going to have to find someone else or come back another day."

Me: "Well, it would have been nice to know that two hours ago, since we told you we were from out of town and were leaving today."

Asshole: "Well I've got carpal tunnel and when I'm done, I'm done, so you're just out of luck."

That was it. No apology, no nothing. ARG!! What about our fucking tattoos??!!

So as we got back on the freeway Annie says, in her infinite wisdom, "Call Sea Tramp." Bingo!! We told Billy (who happens to be the guy who did my Celtic Knot) what happened and he said to stop by the shop when we got into town and we could see how much longer he'd need us to wait. We did, and he said to come back around 7:30, so we went home and unpacked and went back to the shop, and about 2 hours later Annie and I were the proud new owners of MATCHING TATTOOS!!!

Yeah ok, so it hurt a little.

Alright, it hurt A LOT! But beauty is pain, right? And they are BEAUTIFUL!!

So that was it, our weekend of living like rockstars. It was SO nice to get away and relax for three whole days. And now, back to my regularly scheduled life....

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Wubster Wednesday: The Halloween Edition

Three little witches flying on their brooms. The first one said, "Gimme candy!" The second one said, "Where's my hair?" The third one said, "Auntie Zarah, do you know what the most poisonous spider in the whole world is?" Man, those kids are the best.

On the menu was (among other things): Pimples, Bellybuttons with Blood Sauce (cheese tortellini with marinara), Werewolf Fingers with booger sauce (chicken strips with honey mustard), and Snake Bites . Next time, more planning ahead. I'm not so good at that. Spent half the night in the kitchen wearing myself out instead of with the family enjoying the party.

On the craft front, I'm putting my shrug on hold for the moment. I'll just wear a jacket. I need to find a pattern and a yarn that I like, instead of making it up as I go along and using whatever I have on-hand. Instead I'm teaching myself to make Granny Squares because they're so versatile and are a good travel project, and a good way to use up yarn.

Tomorrow after work, Annie and I are headed to the beach to stay at our favorite hotel for three nights. Key Lime Martinis, here we come!! We'll be sure to take pictures. And I'll start posting some. I promise!