Monday, July 30, 2012

Doll making - Round 2

A little while back I made some dolls for TechGuy (Beloved's brother)'s girls. They're crochet and I am still using crochet to make two more dolls. This time they are for SecretWitch (his girlfriend)'s girls. Instead of using the same pattern for both dolls, I used it for one and then a different one for the other.

The one for WiseGal is in this pattern and in pink yarn. The one for Moo (and the other girls) is in this pattern. Moo's doll is in purple. Eriu's doll is in green. Bride's doll is in blue. In the case of both patterns, there seems to be something not quite right about them. The dolls are coming out a bit misshapen.

I'm not going to get upset over it, but rather say that this is just another indication that they are home made. Now, my hope is that I stop looking at the pink yarn and thinking that I should be making one of these.

Friday, July 27, 2012

August NaBloPoMo?

The website BlogHer is doing NaBloPoMo in August. I'm going to give it a shot. Who knows, maybe I'll manage to get my writing in other areas back on track too.

For today, I did an hour and a half of writing on my novel manuscript. The word count is now at : 29647 NaNoWriMo puts their goal word count at 50 k. This means that I have approximately 10.5 k left. I think I can do this.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Pickle experiment - take 3!

I bought several packages of cucumbers. At three dollars a pop, it is my hope that I have enough to make a good batch of pickles in my pickle crock. I fear, however, that I may not have bought enough to fill the crock. I'm trying not to be anxious about this.

I have some pickling spices that I bought at the grocery store on my last trip (last week). I am going to be throwing them into a little cheesecloth bag and tossing them into the brine solution with the pickles. I learned with the last batch that I don't care for dill pickles. Here's hoping that this will come out with a sweeter pickle. I've read a few different tricks about how to keep the pickles crunchy. I believe I am going to give the addition of a grape leaf a try. According to theory the tannic acid in the grape leaf works to keep the pickles crunchy.

I'll report back on how this grand experiment works out.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Continuing on a theme...

I had this pop up on my Facebook page and I thought to myself 'Wow, these are really clever." I especially loved the idea of taking a shelving unit and turning it into seating with storage underneath handled by way of labeled baskets. I need to do a few measurements to see if I can make some unused shelf space work in such a fashion. I know the modestly sized plastic boxes work relatively well but I wish to have things more accessible for the children.

I'm going to teach them to put their toys away before bed. I want to make it easy for them to put things away. Clearly labeled boxes and a set location for them will help things considerably. I've moved many of the toys out of the room in an effort to cut down on the destruction. It's done little. The room still gets completely destroyed on a regular basis. A part of me says that I should removed all but the toys they play the most with.

I am not sure if this is something that will work to reduce some of their misbehavior that has become a recent issue. Some experts and quite a few other parents say that this helps things considerably. I am reaching a point where I would love to see my sweet boys playing happily on the floor rather then flinging things around and just dumping toys before moving on to something else.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A room of one's own or a cottage?

I am enchanted with the idea of a tiny house that has just enough room for Beloved and I. The thought of it taking an afternoon to clean the whole house from top to bottom is just pleasant. As is the idea that it could say that way with minimal fuss. So, when I see things where people have taken small spaces and creatively made them livable, I find myself filled with a powerful yearning to do the same in my own home.

Articles like this one and videos like this one or this one here inspire me. Some people do this because they need to make things work due to the fact they have no other choice, like this guy did. Some people do it because they enjoy the challenge and feel it is important to make a statement about how they live, like this person did. I see these people doing something really amazing.

It is something that I want to emulate. I want to incorporate some of their concepts into my home. In doing so, I want to bring a greater sense of order to the chaos in my life. I want to give my children more space to play and make it easier for them to put their toys away because it is easy to see where they go. I want to make the bedroom into a place of rest and luxury with as minimal effort as possible.

I'll admit, I catch myself fantisizing about a little cottage in a garden for me to putter about in. Space where I can play with plants, yarn, or write with out distractions. I find myself daydreaming about making a space for Beloved to have as his office and project room. Somewhere that he can have as his 'mancave' and be free of the worries or cares of the day.

I'm very lucky that I have my project room. It has become a state of utter chaos right now. I some times feel a great wave of dismay when I look in there and see the disaster it has become over the last several months. It has served as the catch all and place to hide things from small hands. I haven't much room to turn around in, let alone sit in my chair or set up my loom and weave. Some weekend, I keep promising myself, some weekend I will get it all sorted out.

Until I do, however, I'll keep looking for inspiration and dreaming.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Spaghetti Squash & ramblings

Last night, I took that spaghetti squash I bought when I got groceries on Saturday and cooked it up. I found it quite delightful. The kids wouldn't even look at it. Beloved wasn't interested, but that's ok. It meant that I was able to have some for lunch today. Unlike pasta, it didn't lose it's pleasant al dente texture in the fridge over night. Reheated, it was still delightful. I am curious now, if I can do the same 'shredding' technique on other winter squash. It really was a fluke that I found spaghetti squash so cheap last weekend.

I have been having a hard time deciding what I'm going to be carrying in my purse as my go to anxiety soothing project. I have a tiny spindle but it is a bit difficult to do spinning in some of the places where I have had to go. Knitting needles are a touch long (except for the sock needles but those have a sock on them) and most of my projects require large bags to contain them. I am getting bored with knooking, again. I've just been making a strip of fabric. Like I said, I am getting bored.

I saw a pretty patchwork style crochet blanket hanging out on somebody's laundry line as Snuggle Bug and I were walking home from the errand I had to run. I am tempted to start making squares and seam them together into some kind of creation. I suppose that is one way to use up the small balls of yarn I have kicking around.

Monday, July 09, 2012

Procrastination nation...

I can't think of anything else for the parody of Conjunction Junction. Ah well. I'm not as good at it as hubby is.

I've spent my last hour and a half watching random videos on youtube, doing some knooking, and generally sitting around and being lazy. I figured out how to do the purl stitch by way of a video. So now I have a section of stockinette stitch and a section of garter stitch on my little sampler that I am working on.

I'm not entirely sure how I feel about knooking. On one hand it is proving to be a lot more portable then my knitting, which makes it ideal for keeping in my purse as an antidote to anxious fidgeting. At the same time, I am finding some of the stitches (specifically the purl stitch and switching between knit and purl for stockinette) to be awkward. I'm hoping that they will get easier as I progress. I also haven't the slightest idea what I'm going to do with this sampler.

I am trying to help a friend learn to do knooking. She has some difficulties with anxiety too. I figured that some sort of handcraft may be helpful to her too. We'll see, I guess.

Sunday, July 01, 2012

tour de fleece

I'm a day late. That's ok, I'm still going to get some time in. Wish me luck as I proceed forward through the month. Hopefully, by the end of this, I will have learned how to use my navajo spindle.


First spindle full of yarn! It was extra, extra chunky. I have no clue what I'm going to do with it. It's off the spindle and in a skein. I just soaked and it's hanging out in the brilliant sunlight to dry. With all of this heat, it's probably going to dry a lot faster outside then it would in my bathroom. Pics will be up soon. :) In other news, I think I need to help my MiL clear out some more fleece, because I just went through most of that ball of fiber she dropped off. >.<