Thursday, April 29, 2010

TWT - honeymoon

Today, I wish I were back here:

Drinking one of these:

Until next time...

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I finally have a sewing machine to use!

You might notice I didn’t stop after “I finally have a sewing machine.” There’s a good reason for that, - I haven’t actually bought my own yet, but I did borrow one from a woman Nick works with. She offered it up a few months ago when I first started talking about getting my own, but kept forgetting to bring it in to work.

This weekend I mentioned something on FB about not knowing if I should spend my saved money on a new computer or sewing machine because my laptop is slower than a herd of turtles stampeding through chunky peanut butter lately. And by lately I mean over the last year or so. Anyways…it reminded her that she was going to let me borrow hers, so she brought it in for me yesterday. Now I’m itching to get some fabric & start playing.

I do have a couple projects in mind that I want to start with. One should be fairly easy, and something good to start on – curtains. Easy enough, right? I think I want to do tab curtains, but haven’t decided for absolutely sure yet. I found a few fabrics I liked the last time I was out at JoAnn Fabrics, but hadn’t measured the windows, so I didn’t have any idea how much I should buy.

Now that I’ve actually got the machine to do the work (I’ll work on the time & space part later!), I think it’s time to measure up the windows & find some fabric. Last year we found some curtains we really liked at Cabela’s but they were outrageously expensive, which is about the time I decided I could just make them instead. We’ll see how it goes. Hopefully we can get some of the house stuff settled soon, so I can take the time to play around with the machine.

The other project I want to tackle is a bit more complex & time-consuming. I want to make us a quilt. Okay, stop laughing, I’m serious! We need a new summer comforter, so I thought maybe I could just make us a light-weight quilt to use during the summer. That way I can do any color combo I want (and can’t seem to find anywhere) & I can make it big enough that we don’t have to fight over it. Sounds like a win-win situation! The only problem I might have is that it’s been years & years & years since I’ve done any sort of quilting, let alone sewing, so it may be a bit of an optimistic project to try to tackle. But, I’ve never been one to try to make things easy on myself. I enjoy a challenge! Or at least so I say before I jump in with both feet.

So, we’ll see where all this goes, when/if I can find the time to work on it. I have one crochet blanket to finish up, another to preferably make before June (but I’m going back & forth on that, or waiting until Christmas), the entry way to finish painting/tiling/door installation, the termite issue to sort out along with all resultant damage control, patio door to re-install, and flooring to go down in the dining room & kitchen. So it’s not like I’m busy, right? :)

Until next time…

Thursday, April 22, 2010

TWT - wedding

With our first anniversary coming up this Sunday, it seems appropriate to use one of our wedding pictures for this week’s Thousand Words Thursday. We had such amazing photographers (Neal from LemonLime [Eric was in China, but that’s a story for another time], Dustin Steller, & Matt Kacourek), it’s so hard to pick a favorite. I’ll definitely have more of these to come, but just two good dramatic shots for today.

Until next time...

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Thousand Words Thursday

I know…I know…
I know exactly what you’re thinking, “Didn’t she ALREADY post a thousand words today? Jeesh…”
Well, yes, I know I rambled a bit (HA!) earlier, but this is a different kind of thousand words. More along the lines of “A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words.” It’s a good excuse to post some of my favorite pictures, and a lazy way to blog for a day. And had I been thinking earlier, I would have saved my crochet post for later & done only this one today. So I guess it’s your lucky day – bonus blog! :)
Oh, and I’m testing out the e-mail blogging, so hopefully this’ll all work out alright.
This is my little one on a trip up to visit family over Easter weekend. I said she looks pouty because she’s missing her Daddy (he wasn’t able to go with us for the weekend).

Until next time…


I love to crochet! Over the past few years it's become a great hobby sometimes bordering on obsession.

I learned to crochet a few years ago, while I was in college. I can't remember exactly when it was, probably Sophomore or Junior year, I know I was living in the apartment, and I don't think it was Senior year. For some reason I want to say it was around Christmas break, but I could just be imagining things.

My friend, Erin, worked at Campus Safety, and I spent a lot of time there chatting with her on her many night shifts. Now that I think about it, I'm pretty sure we probably spent more time hanging out at Campus Safety than we did in our own apartments, even though we only lived a floor or two apart (this depends on what year it was, since I moved up a floor between soph. & junior years)!

I remember I had decided I was going to teach myself to crochet, probably after seeing something Erin had made or just talking about it. I picked up a how-to book, hook, & yarn, I did my best to figure it out. No such luck. So Erin told me to bring my stuff over to Campus Safety on one of her shifts so she could teach me how. I distinctly remember sitting in a chair by the window, chaining away for my blanket.

Looking back on it now, I'm pretty certain she was teaching me double-crochet, but I somehow managed to make up my own stitch. Even now, I look back & can't figure out what I was doing. I remember getting so frustrated because I kept catching an extra loop when I tried to pull through, but kept going anyways.

Over the next couple years, I kept working on that one blanket, just a little here & there. Then a few years ago another friend, Delia, said she wanted to make a patchwork blanket to donate somewhere (I can't remember exactly what for now), and she wanted as many people as possible to send her squares of a certain size. I decided it was a good time to pick it back up, and jumped back in.

I did some looking around on the internet since I couldn't remember exactly what to do, and this is when I found out how I had apparently picked things up incorrectly from Erin. It turns out crocheting could be so much easier than I had made it for myself!

Delia also sent me great instructions for a granny square pattern when I was having troubles getting my squares the correct sizes. I loved making granny squares, and over the next couple years made quite a few granny square baby blankets for friends & family when a little one was born. I even made a huge blanket for my husband (approx. 6'x9' - he's tall!), but still just from granny squares I had sewn together. Granny squares & simple scarves were my go-to "patterns" for quite a while.

This "crochet season" (I usually only crochet fall-spring, it's too hot in the summer!) I decided to try out a pattern I had picked up a year or so ago for a flame pattern blanket - basically just zig zags (Emily's blanket, more on that later). I loved it & realized I was sick of my usual granny square. I set out to find more patterns, and after good success with one (Emma's blanket), I started playing around with the pattern and came up with my own variations. I'm working on the first one right now, and am really excited to see how it turns out. I've got a couple more ideas in the works & am really anxious to work on them. Unfortunately we're getting to the time of year when I have less time to crochet, but have thankfully have set myself a deadline for the next two blankets.

So far my only 3D project was a bunch little stuffed construction cones I made a couple years ago for my team at work. I'll do a separate post on those later. I would really like to work on some hats this summer, but we'll see how ambitious I really am! I also have another idea in mind for those construction cones, but I have to get through these next couple blankets first. One thing at a time! My problem is I get excited about a new idea or project, and suddenly don't care about what I'm currently working on anymore. This is one reason that as much as I hate having to sew a bunch of squares together, it's still better than getting bored on one big blanket. With smaller pieces, there's a sense of accomplishment that comes with completing each individual square, and then the satisfaction of finally getting to see the full finished project.

Until next time...

Monday, April 12, 2010


Edit (06/07/10): This is the original welcome message when I first started the blog & things have gone a bit of a different direction now, so as of June 2, this will just be the home of my “crafty crap.” I am going to continue the TWT stuff too though, because photography is a craft too, right? And it’s just not something I want to stop sharing. :)


I'm not yet sure exactly where this is going, or what it will be. It'll probably be a random mix of just about everything, which is fitting, since my life is the same way.

Recently in our life:
-We're working on remodeling the kitchen/dining room. The project started easliy enough; we were just going to pull up the carpet in the dining room & linoleum in the kitchen & put down wood laminate flooring. I think it was Nick's last night-shift week, back in December, that he first pulled up the flooring. We're not in the beginning of April, and still don't have floor down, have new cabinets & counter tops installed, and now (after this past weekend) have plywood & a sheet of plastic instead of a patio door. I think this all deserves its very own post, so I'll get back to that.
-Our first anniversary is coming up! It's so hard to believe it's already/only been a year since we got married. Depending on the day, sometimes it feels like it was just yesterday or decades ago. I mean that in the best possible way. This year has been much of the same, and yet so different from our previous five. I like to think we are happier than ever, and still in our "honeymoon" stage. Here's hoping that it never ends.
-Our baby, Raven, is as sweet, rotten, and spoiled as ever. We took her to the lake for the first time this year yesterday and of course she loved it! I still remember the first time we were out there, threw a stick, and instinct took over. She jumped into the water before she realized what she was doing, then panicked, swam back to us, and wouldn't have anything to do with the water again. Now she doesn't want to leave the water, and loves to swim out to fetch sticks we've thrown for her. She will even jump off the dock into the water, although it's not her favorite way to go in. This morning I am home with her because she got a deer tick & we weren't able to get the whole thing out. I'll call the vet shortly to see if she needs to go in right away to get it removed. My guess is yes.
-I have been doing a lot of crochet this winter, trying out new blanket patterns and having a good time with it. I do have a couple more I need to get finished up before June, then I'll probably take my usual break for the summer. I'd like to continue, but I just have less time in the summer, and it's too hot to sit with a blanket on my lap! Making smaller pieces to sew together later could be a good compromise. I'd also like to learn to make hats, which would be a good summer project. Pictures to come of some of my recent projects.

Well, I suppose this is a good place to stop for now. Gotta call the vet to find out about my baby!

Until next time...