Mom

If you pray, send good vibes, whatever, please add my mother to your thoughts. I just found out last night that she is very sick with uterine cancer.

Contest!

Thanks Deneen for cluing me into this contest. Check it out.

eBay can BITE me!

I'm really frustrated with eBay right now. Why do they not have some sort of 800 number to call when you have issues? I have been dealing with them through email. They don't respond with anything other that a generic form email that tells me not to reply, that they will contact me soon. Someone hacked into my account and ran up charges on my account and they're not giving me any tools with which to contact them.

This morning I checked my email and found a million emails from ebay letting me know my listing for sale was up and ready for business. Only I didn't list anything. And certainly not about 10 grand worth of DVD box sets! So I immediately contact them via email, I change all my passwords, etc. I checked my bank account and the listing fees were not yet charged to me. Okay, no money lost. Well then I had to delete all the listings myself and one by one, which was a pain and wasted much time. Why can't ebay delete those items for sale? Why do I have to waste an hour deleting listings on by one???

I have been checking my email and checking my bank account every 2 seconds waiting for some indication that something happened, either ebay writes to me and tells me they have stopped the charges ($3 per listing!!), or the bank account shows they've gone through. Just something so I'm not sitting here waiting and wondering the what-ifs. Just freaking tell me nothing will happen, or charge my bank account, or something, so I can stop worrying about it. I want a resolution, but instead I sit here and I wait and I wonder.

Well, I call the bank and they tell me to cancel my checking account, to completely close it. In lieu of just putting a stop on those individual charges. I tell them no, my account was not accessed, but I do not want any unauthorized charges on there from ebay. Somehow they can't do that. Why?? You can stop payment on a check, you can issue a charge back up to 1 year after you buy something, yet you can't stop a payment from going through that you didn't authorize? Huh? I told her I wrote checks recently and if I close my account those checks will bounce. "Oh well." YES. That was her response. You've got to be kidding me.

So I keep getting all these non-personal emails from ebay that tell me not to respond. I have sent them a million emails because I want to know what is going on. I have no clue. And now all of a sudden I can't access my account because my password, the new one, is not working. They say to use live help if you can't access your account to log in, but unfortunately I can't do that from work because it's a java-based pop-up thing that is not allowed past my firewall. ARGH. I can't do anything until about 9 tonight. So I can't get back onto ebay to send them emails, and I can't respond to any emails they send me, and I can't call them because they don't have an 800 number. Ridiculous.

Still no charges to my bank account. Maybe they won't go through. I hope not, because it will be hundreds of dollars worth of listing fees. Which might cause my rent check to bounce. Hip-hip-hooray.

Acquired

Paton's Kroy Socks arrived last week. On sale and cheap. This should be good to experiment with sock making for the first time. Though interestingly, I just received my Amazon order today and the Crochet Socks book relies heavily on cotton as opposed to wool yarns. Oh well.


I did win the auction on eBay for the Spring issue. Woo-hoo! I know for certain I'll make the slouchy bag, and everyone I've seen wearing the seafoam vest looks great so maybe that, too. We'll see. Definitely the bag though.

My 26 Day Labor of Love

I can't say I am in love with the colors in the blanket (um, maybe I even think it's ugly?!), but my 3 year old niece will adore it and that's all that matters. It was mostly a stash-busting endeavor. I'd say about 75% of the yarn is what I had on hand. Maybe they could have been matched a little better but, again, this was a stash-busting project. You cannot tell in the photo, but that varigated yarn has the cream, the orchid and the lavendar in it, and up close it does match well.

26 days and I'm done. Finihsed measurements are about 62 x 84.

When I finished, I collapsed and almost cried. You all know I've only really gotten into crocheting about 5 months ago, so this was a huge endeavor for me. My first ever afghan. Only 4 more to go. Ugh.






Art Show

We had an art show this past Saturday, and it was pretty fun. Kristen (one of the artists) had the idea to do a community show based on words, and what they meant, and what they inspired. She selected a handful of words (Passion, Communication, Detachment, Sympathy, Energy, Empathy, etc. etc.) and gave them out to individuals, along with the definition. We were to do with it whatever we wanted to. Here are some photos of the event.

Passion: By Kristen Marsh
Clay sculptures







Detachment by moi:
Collage on wooden birdhouse
(I decided to participate 3 hours before the show, so it's kind of only partially completed).





Communication: Mark Barbere
(Look at the drawing, I'm in there.)
Mark asked individuals to describe a photo. Then he covered up the photo with a sculptured hand. On the hand he wrote a story that related to the photo. You never get to see the photo though, so it's left up to your imagination what it actually is.





Ethnicity: Kim Logan


Manipulation: Dan Greuling







Energy: (Sorry, don't know who did this one).
This was pretty cool. There are two mirrors back to back. Two individuals stand on either side and position their faces so half appears in the mirror, and the other half does not. When you're staring at yourself and someone else, it looks like half of your face is your own and the other half is the other person's. I just photographed the mirror, and had a huge "duh" moment when I saw that my reflection was photographed. Like, didn't I know if I took a pic of a mirror that I was standing in front of that I would show up? Good thing I don't look like an idiot in this pic!


Love: Sooby Ahmed


Sympathy: Dave Hatch


Sex: Not sure who did this one


Dan goofing off:


Eric took this pic of myself (love how my eyes are never open), Elaine and my Mark. We had stepped outside for a cigarette.




That's that for now. :) Almost ready to post a big huge FO photo. Probably tomorrow.

Unnecessary

Since I've sworn off yarn purchases for a while, and since I've been making a little extra money selling used craft books on Amazon, I decided I needed to make a few purchases.

Okay, so I still have not found this dang thing anywhere. I really, really, really want the Spring 2007 issue because I want to make Drew's bag that I just love, and possibly the Sea Foam vest. I just bid on it on eBay (there was only one). I swear this is the most difficult to find magazine ever. I mean, does NH not crochet? They say the first issue will arrive in September, so I know I'm going to miss the Spring issue. Trying to find the Spring issue is driving me fricken nuts.

I saw a cute little sweater a beginner friend had crocheted from a pattern in here and it was lovely.

I'm dying for my damn sock yarn to show up. Since I've not made socks before and I don't know anything about sock yarn, I just ordered some inexpensive Kroy Socks. I know, I said no yarn, but how can you make socks without sock yarn?

And I wanted something that had home-decor crochet. I've heard good things about this book. And the slippers...right up my alley.


A case of Pattern Acquisition Syndrome? I'd say so.

Spring is Springing Up All Around

Nests and Cocoons finally appear after the long winter.

The warmth of the sun is obvious on the water's surface.

Plants sprout up from the newly thawed ground.

The sun doesn't set until well after 8pm at night.

Buds on otherwsie barren trees make their way back into consciousness.

But most trees are still bare.

There's enough warmth from the sunlight to keep my flowers alive, despite the chilly evenings and nights we still have.

It is so warm outside that even Marley tells me I should stop working on my niece's afghan and just get out of the house. She wouldn't let me touch this all day yesterday.

Weekend

It was half a complete and utter bust, and half an okay time. One of those times where for every good thing came a bad thing. I guess as always things could be worse.

Friday involved too much wine, a revelation about my life and how I do not like many things about it and plan to change said things effective immediately, and then a heinous fight with the boy. I cried so hard that night that surely I lost 10 pounds from the exertion alone.

Saturday the boy and I did wake up and go to Sheep and Wool Grower's Association Fair Thingy, which after the night before I didn't expect we would. And I was so happy to have been there. The weird part was, as much as I drooled and carried on about all the gorgeous yarn there, I didn't buy a thing. Not one thing. Well, aside from the most tasty onion rings ever. But no yarn. I think what happened was that I was in such shock from all the yarn out there that I didn't know where to begin, and therefore couldn't decide on anything. Like I was on yarn overload, and with only $X number of dollars who do you give your cash to?? I did learn a few things though. First off, real yarn, nice high-end expensive and hand-loved yarn, is so much different than your generic store bought yarn. Insanely different. Second, I reaffirmed my love of alpaca and alpaca blends. Holy crap do I love that stuff. Nothing is so heavenly, warm and soft to me, and if I could die and be buried in Alpaca yarn I'd be happy. Third, I need some silk. Silk yarn is luxurious. I loved it and I want to make a dressy capelet or wrap or shawl for myself out of silk. And fourth, if I don't have a project in mind, don't buy the yarn! I was so proud of myself for this. I had nothing in my head to make, and so I figured it would be silly to spend money on good yarn. If I just bought something because I liked it, well I'd have a lot of teeny tiny little scarves or hats, and that might make for really expensive hats and scarves, and a huge waste of great yarn.

Saturday night the boy just slept and slept for 5 hours. Woke up at 10pm, I kid you not. I was worried he was ill, since he never sleeps for that long. When he takes a 5 pm nap, he is up by 5:45 or 6 and has dinner with me. That night I tried to wake him but he wouldn't budge. We went back to bed at 11. He was just exhausted he claims.

Sunday I didn't do much. Crocheted. Went for a nice urban walk. Watched Jaws. Ha. So kitschy.

I am thinking that I'd like to move far away. I know I can't really do that for money reasons, but the idea of moving away is so appealing. I think I need to redefine my life. I need to hold onto the boy because he just deserves the best, and let go of everything else, family excluded. There gets to be a point where you realize you can swim against the current to try to catch up with the things that passed you by, or you can let go and and float downstream toward something else. I think it's time I float. I don't know if it is my fault, or if it is someone else's fault, or if it's a combination of faults, but I will never feel that I could swim fast enough or hard enough for it to matter. I feel tired from trying, to be honest. I feel tired of trying to win some battle that I have no chance of winning. I wish I could rewind my life to what it was a year and a half ago. I wish I could change the course I took. But I can't, and I think maybe I need to let go of everything now in order to save myself. Otherwise I may drown. I can't swim forever.

Anyways. Drama. I'm just feeling bad lately. Really bad. Really, really lost and all melodramatic.

But look at these cuties. I kept looking at them and thinking, your wool makes my yarn which makes my projects.

Sheep keep me going. Haha.



Sock-Along Part Deux

I noticed on the Flickr group site for the sock-along that so far I'm the only crocheter who left a comment. Not to say there are not more crocheters signed up for it, but it would be waaaaaay cool to see more crochers on there. I've never done socks before and y'all know I'm going to have questions. Who can I bug for help if I'm the only one?

Calling all Knitters and Crocheters!

I found a link to the 2007 Summer of Socks. A sock-along for knitters and crocheters. It looks pretty fun. I've wanted to make some socks for some time and I think this is a great excuse to do so. I can't imagine working on my ghans by the pool, but a sock perhaps. Anyhow, here's the link: Sock Along

oh

http://www.yankeeshepherd.org/fes2006.html

That's only 30 minutes from me.

Blog Etiquette?

So from various fiber boards and through other people's blogs I've come across some really cool blogs that I have added to Blogines, and that I check out daily. I leave comments and these women probably have no clue who I am. But I jump right in and try to comment because I feel like a voyeur otherwise, just reading without making mention of my having been there. I guess I'm curious to know if this is weird or not. Or if this is the way it goes?
I've always been socially awkward and shy. Who would have thought that would carry over into blogging? *roll eyes*

Free to Good Home

Family Circle Easy Knitting Spring 2003 mag. I'll even pay the shipping. When my grandmother passed away I inherited her knitting bag and crochet stuff. I won't use this but I don't have it in me to ever throw it away.

Well...

I need a second job.

Huge sigh.

The last surgery related bill came in for Mark yesterday and this one alone was $20,000. We're waiting on his financial aid app to be processed, but it will only give him about a 50% reduction I think. So we're screwed. No matter what, rent comes first, food comes second. Bills come last. I know he's not my husband, I know we're just two kids in love who are shacked up. But still. Like I'm not going to feel the effects of these bills? Like I'm not going to notice that we're eating Mac n Cheese every night? Or not ever going out on a date? Or that we have no money for extra things? It's going to suck. My opinion (not Mark's, I haven't told him this, so he doesn't know my stance really) is that if I want a future with this guy, we just have to take care of it no matter what it takes. End of story. Christ, I don't want it to take 12 years before he could afford an engagement ring if that's where this is going, you know?

So my second job. I'm going to craft. Uh-huh. Seriously. I'm going to open up an Etsy shop and I'm going to put every little thing up for sale that I have. Then I'm going to set aside 20 hours per week towards salables. I have a few altered art things I've made, collaged boxes and the like. I make handmade journals and have all the supplies. I've got a huge bag of crochet for sale. All simple stuff that I would sell for cheap prices, because they were all practice and though they're not heinous, they're super simple. So I'm going to photograph all that stuff this weekend and get it up there.

There is also this thing called "Derry fest" that happens at the end of every summer in my hometown. It's a little street-fair crafty kinda thing. I'm going to sign up for that and rent a spot. It's like $35. Real cheap. No one ever sells knitting or crochet there, so I think I'll bust out tons of dishcloths, headbands, purses, that kind of stuff. And I'll have my leftover wintery stuff too. Hopefully I can make a few hundred dollars.

My goal is a small one. I want to earn $100 per month. I could go out and get a second job and make that in a week without much effort but I don't want to. I want to do something I enjoy. This money each month is enough extra to make a decent dent in some smaller bills I'd like to pay off. I hope I can do it. I doubt it, though. Selling crafts is so hard. But at least I have everything I need in order to make a lot of stuff without spending $$.

I just need to find a way to work on the $30,000 worth of medical bills sitting on my kitchen table. It's depressing.

Hook Case

Deneen left a comment that she had seen a pattern for a felted hook case made out of the Cache that I love so much. What is ironic is that just last weekend I hauled out my sewing machine, cut some fabric, and sat down to sew one that rolled up and tied with a ribbon. Once I got the fabric in place and pinned, I tried to sew it when I got such a huge, knotted mess of thread that I was unable to fix. I hate sewing, it's one of those things that gives me serious anxiety for some reason. And since losing my sewing machine manual (way to go), I need the help of my mother to fix my machine when it does this, or to change the bottom bobbin, or whatever. I just can't do it. I suppose I could order a new manual but, sigh. I hate to sew. So I scrapped the project.

Anyhow, I had thought about crocheting one and felting it. Which was even more reaffirmed when Deneen mentioned the Cache felted one. I'm really doubting I'll do it in the Cache because I have enough for a bag and I think I'd rather make a small purse with my stash. But I'm thinking of stopping at Joann's tonight on the way home to pick up some wool so I can start on this over the weekend. I think I'll write up a pattern as I go. I'm thinking of just making one large rectangle much too tall for the hooks, and then folding a portion of the bottom up and stitching some hook-sized pockets. I wonder if that would be too bulky though? I'd like one that rolls up and secures with a ribbon so maybe this method would be fine. I guess there's only one way to find out.

FO-tos

Aren't I witty? Har har.

Anyhow. Scarf. Moda Dea Cache. I don't know what it is, but I love this yarn a lot. I think this is part 2 of Tori's Christmas gift (with the shawl). Which makes her all done. 1 down, many to go.





Black scarf. Made this forever ago while watching a movie, just needing something to busy my hands. Not a huge fan of it, but whatever. I think this was leftover LB Thick and Quick that I got on sale for $1/skein about 5 months ago.



I started on blanket #3 last night, so now I've got 3 of them going. I have 15 skeins of Paton's Divine, and have gone through 1 1/2 already and I'm nervous about not having enough. I measured the width of 1 skein's worth of crochet, and if my measurements are correct it won't be more than 52.5 inches wide. I suppose that's fine for a throw. I don't know. Worse case scenario I may pick up a 4th color and make a nice wide border around it when I'm done. I'll have to see how it looks though, and how it measures up.
It's Thursday. Dying for it to be 4 pm Friday so I can go home for the weekend. I don't think I'll do anything Friday night and Saturday day except clean the house, grocery shop and get the laundry done. Saturday night a bunch of us are going to Mass to see Spiderman 3. Why am I driving 40 minutes for a movie? I have no clue. Sunday I was thinking I'd make one last roast before it's too warm to use the oven for 5 consecutive hours, so I'll be pretty much housebound.
Back to work. Or maybe I'll go preorder the Crochet Me book on Amazon. Hmmmm....

Some FOs

but no photos. What's the point? Sigh. I don't know.

I finished up two scarves last night. Just needed to weave in the ends. One of them is just a black mesh stitch scarf and it is u-g-l-y. I don't know why I made it, probably out of boredom and a desire to make something mindless. It's been sitting in the livingroom for about 10 weeks waiting for the ends to be woven in. The other is the Moda Dea Cache scarf from the supply I picked up on sale ($1 skeins) recently. 3 skeins, really long and thin. I think I will give it to Tori for Christmas with her shawl, but am not decided. In other words, I'll throw it in the FO bin and decide later. I have 6 skeins of one colorway that I think I will make a small felted bag out of. I hadn't thought to felt this stuff, but saw a photo recently of a girl who felted something out of it, and it looked really pretty. Looks like it felted awesome, too.

Not sure what I want to work on tonight. I have the 2 ghans in progress. Sara's is half done and Jacob's about one-third. I'm not in the mood to touch them at the moment so I might start on the ghan for Mark's brother's wedding gift. I'm just not in the mood for anything right now. I want to crochet but I'm not really sure what I feel like making. Bah.

Aunt Flo sure knows how to make a grand entrance when she's been late. I feel like crap. I think a morphine drip is the only thing that could cure me right now. Maybe switching birth control pills is in order. These cramps are miserable.

The Oogies

That's what I've got. Oogies. A late Aunt Flo (superb on my anxiety level, let me tell you), an upset stomach, first of the month stuff to do at work. A whole bunch of oogies. Maybe even a side of ickies, too.

I'm dying for the weekend to be here. For some reason I've not been having an easy time lately. I go through phases where the days and weeks seem to rush by me, and time is flying. I much prefer that to what I've felt like lately. Lately, things drag on. And on, and on. A work week is painfully slow. And this is coming from someone who loves her job! But it's slow. Time is dripping like honey, oozing in a melancholy sort of way. Days at work are tedious, even when they're not stressful. Like I said, I love my job so ordinarily work is enjoyable. This is something I would expect during the winter, not as spring approaches and things start to perk up around me. I'm not really sure what it is. I'll blame it on financial stress because that seems the thing to blame it on.

I know something is *off* when all I want to do is crochet. Typically, it's something I enjoy to do. Lately, it's something I have to do. As in, in lieu of going out. In lieu of sleeping. In lieu of everything else. Hook and yarn in hand, everything is quieted and pleasant.

I'm sure I'll snap out of it pretty soon. Warm weather is a good cure-all for things of this nature.

I made a scarf last night. Long and thin. Need to weave in ends before I photograph it. I have a lot of ends to weave in. Maybe I should do that tonight. I have 4 FOs in need of it, come to think of it.

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