Wow is this thing bright!
I had hoped to finish this incredibly cushy poncho today, but I spent all day doing Girl Scouts volunteering, including running a recruiting table at the school open house and coordinating and attending Scout Sunday. So, I didn’t get quite as far as I wanted to.
However, I did get a lot of crochet done, and I only have 5 rows left to do. I may do them tomorrow morning, just to finish off this piece before diving headlong into the next theme.
I’ve decided that February theme will be “CATS,” which may not seem all that this month’s theme, since we all know cats are creatures of comfort, but I have a few specific cat-themed projects I want to get done, and since one of them is for Princess’ birthday, this will be the best time to do them.
I’ll talk more about it tomorrow. Right now, I’m beat. Good night.
Hurray for quick and easy projects!
I realize the colors on this crochet project look a bit jarring, but trust me, they work together beautifully. I know this because I once dyed my hair these two colors, and I looked FAB!
Anyway, I think I'm over whatever bug I had earlier in the week, but now I am in the midst of a very busy weekend. This morning was 2 hours of black belt class at the dojo, followed by an intensive house cleaning. That was followed by an evening working with Princess and a group of her school friends. The girls were working on a painting for the school auction coming up in a few weeks. Things went well, but there's nothing like a gang of hyper pre-teens eating pizza and slinging around acrylic paint in my freshly cleaned living room to set my teeth on edge.
To soothe my frazzled nerves, I picked up my biggest crochet hook and set to work on a simple project. This poncho I'm working on only has 15 rows, and it's made with very chunky yarn. I'm already through the first third of it, and I expect if I get up early tomorrow, I can get through the rest of it before I have to pack up and head out for the rest of my busy weekend at the kids' school and church. The school is holding an open house and wants Girl Scouts represented there, and then we are celebrating Scout Sunday at the evening Mass, followed by a reception with CAKE and LEMONADE. (And I just now realized I forgot to buy the lemonade mix. Yay, one more thing to deal with tomorrow.)
So I'm thinking maybe I can get this poncho done by Mass tomorrow evening, or at least keep it with me to calm me down between stints of being a responsible Girl Scout volunteer. I plan to spend Monday avoiding anything that looks like responsible activity, but for tomorrow, I must be good. Blech.
Good night for now. I'll let you know how this all goes tomorrow.
She is my constant couch companion.
I took another sick day today. I did feel better today, but deliberately kept my activity level low key. Even so, I had to get some volunteer work done today, both for Girl Scouts and the school. That kept me off the couch most of the day, but while I was on the couch, a certain fuzzy orange someone kept me company.
I’m not sure when Marmalade decided the couch and its occupying laps were her domain, but anytime anyone sits on the couch, she’s there, right in the lap. I can type on top of her, draw webcomics on top of her, and crochet entire blankets on top of her. She will not move. She is one with the lap and the couch, and she’s probably happiest that way.
Yesterday afternoon (Day 27 of Creature Comforts), I started to feel a little less than stellar. By evening I had a pounding headache, aches and pains, and an upset stomach. I managed to do the bare minimum of work – crocheting together another strip of granny squares for the monstrous blanket of doom.
The kittens did their best to make me feel better.
I decided to sleep late – very late – this morning, and spend the rest of the day doing as little as possible. So I curled up on my beloved couch and did a little more work on the blanket. Then I decided that was too hard so I switched to drawing instead.
She looks better than I feel.
Really, this is more tracing and coloring than drawing at this point, and since I find those to be comforting activities, I’m including this drawing in Creature Comforts. I did the pencil work on this earlier in the week then transfered it over to Concepts on my iPad. I think I’m going to spend more time mindlessing coloring in tomorrow, since that’s about all I feel like doing. I’m still not 100% today, and I have a ton of volunteer work to do this weekend, so I’m taking another sick day to recover and I will get done whatever I get done. I’ll try to show the results tomorrow, if I’m feeling well enough. Good night for now.
Granny squares ready to be added to the blanket.
Ladies and gentlemen, I have officialy entered “survival mode.”
I know I’ve already mentioned that this is the time of the year that is hardest on me. I have 3 volunteer jobs in Girl Scouts – troop leader, troop cookie coordinator, and school representative. This is the time of year when all 3 of those jobs collide. This weekend we’ll be celebrating Scout Sunday at the church associated with our sponsoring school. As school representative for Girl Scouts, I’m one of the volunteers responsible for coordinating this event and the reception afterwards (as well as being one of the volunteers who helps set up the training sessions for girls who want to earn their religioius badges and emblems). I’ve already had 2 meetings this week for Girl Scout volunteers, for a total of 5 hours spent in meetings in the last two nights. Initial orders for Girl Scout cookies have to be submitted this week, so I’m working on that. Cookie booth site selection was this evening, so I’ve now got 6 cookie booths coming up between end of February and mid-March. And the school is having an open house the same day we’re doing Scout Sunday, so I have to man a table for Girl Scouts at that event, then get the school cafeteria ready for the Scout Sunday reception, then sit through Mass (yes, it’s “Drag Your Buddhist to Church” day again!), then help run the reception all on the same day.
And so naturally, today I broke out in hives and had a flare up of joint pain.
This is the time I hunker down and look at all the things I have to do, and I start to pick and choose my battles. I felt great yesterday, and I did ALL THE THINGS that I had on my to-do list. I felt lousy today and did only those things I absolutely had to do, to-do list be damned. The only crafting I got done today was to weave in the ends on some granny squares for the blanket. And that was it. There was no time or energy for anything else.
I hate days like this. But they are a fact of my life, especially at this time of year. Fortunately, I decided to be conservative in my booth selections, so we’re only doing one booth on any given day. But I still have two weekends in a row where we’re going to have Friday, Saturday, and Sunday all tied up with Girl Scout stuff. Somehow, I will survive.
You have no idea how much I love these things.
By now, you’ve probably figured out I am THE Creature of Comforts for this theme. I have my couch. I have my pillows. I have my projects, which are a comfort in and of themselves. And like many others, I have my comfort foods.
I can’t eat the way I used to when I was in my twenties. I can’t even eat the way I used to when I was in my thirties. Hell, I can’t even eat the way I used to last year. Me and processed foods just don’t mix. So if I want a treat, it needs to be something I’ve made from scratch. These biscotti fit the bill perfectly.
The recipe takes a while to make. There’s a lot of baking, then cutting, then more baking, then flippping and then even more baking, so this isn’t a recipe that I can just toss in the oven. But the results are worth it. I like being able to sit down in the mornings, have my cup of coffee and eat my biscotti while I read through the morning news. It’s such a mundane little ritual, but I figured out a long time ago that my breakfast is a pretty good predictor of how the rest of my day will go. If I can take my time and enjoy the meal, everything else seems to go much more smoothly that day.
So, biscotti. It’s what’s for breakfast tomorrow morning. For now, good night 🙂
I am creating the coziest place on Earth!
This is my couch. I have had this couch since grad school, which was almost 25 years ago. We replaced the couch cushions on it last summer, but little else has changed until now. The pillows I had originally made for the couch all fell apart. The various afghans my mother made for me have all been stolen by my children. But the couch abides. It is my couch, and I love it.
Three years ago, I tore my right ACL and meniscus cartilidge, and as a result, I spent almost 6 months straight on my couch, first recovering from the injury, then the surgery, and then the physical therapy. I realized then that I never wanted to be parted from my couch, and that my couch deserved the best of everything I could ever give it. I’m just sorry it’s taken me so long to make my couch such nice pillows and a blanket. The blanket should be done by the end of the week. The Jake pillow was just finished today. Next month, I may add another pillow, a cat bolster, perhaps. I spend a lot of time on my couch, and so it deserves every luxury I can give it.
Yes, I love my couch. Of course, I also love my bed, and it’s late, so I think I’m going to go there now. Good night, couch!
So, how’s the weather been in your area?
Around here we’ve had snow alternating with rain and sleet and more snow. In other words, it’s been yucky. Yesterday, the girls’ school let out early, so I decided we’d do some crafting. There’s nothing more comforting that hot chocolate, cookies, crafting and games on a snow day. I’d recently seen some videos on resin casting with embedded objects and I already had a lot of the supplies on hand, so I decided we could try that! After a lot of set up and preparation and a game of “Adventure Time Munchkin,” the girls and I were able to make these…
These are NOT muffins! Do not eat them!
The shiny sparkly blue casting is Pixie’s. The pretty red sprinkly one is Princess’. And the thing that looks like sparkly raw eggs is mine.
Before I show you how mine turned out (the girls absconded with theirs before I could get pics), let me explain what Iwas trying to do. I wanted to place some small buttons of breakfast foods in the front of the casting and layer a kitten sticker behind that. Then I wanted to add a layer of pretty yellow glitter, followed by a layer of clear yellow resin. The idea was to make a sort of sunny kitten breakfast scene. However, I didn’t leave anough time between my layers, and this is what I got instead.
“Breakfast Kitten Trapped in Runny Eggs”
I like it, but it does look like I embalmed that poor kitten in egg yolks for all eternity.
Aside from the layers getting all mixed up, I think it looks pretty good. I’m wondering if polishing would help clear it up, but I’m not sure I want to try that. I’m afraid I’ll mess it up. I think instead, I’ll do a few trial pieces and learn how to polish on those. For now, runny-eggs-breakfast-kitten looks good to me.
Yay! Appliques are done! Now what?
Well, they aren’t perfect, but the appliques are done. Once again, I had issues with the satin stitching. Sometimes I couldn’t get the needle to go through, sometimes the bobbin thread would snarl up. A couple times the thread going through the needle just frayed and split during stitching. Honestly, I don’t know if the problem is my needle (I put a brand new heavy-duty needle in before starting this!), or if the problem is the thread (one brand seems to fray more than the other), or if the problem is just my ancient sewing machine.
Actually, I can test that last theory. Princess wants a cat bolster like the one I made for myself at the beginning of the month, and Pixie has a brand new Singer sewing maching. It’s a basic model, nothing fancy, but it’s brand new and it has a drop-in bobbin, unlike my machine. I may try doing this on her machine the next time around.
And that time will probably come next month. Thinking ahead, I want February’s theme to be “Cats.” We have 3 cats in our household, and I have been thinking about making stuff for them. Then there’s the cat bolster that Princess wants, and Pixie probably wants one too. And I have some paintings of cats in progress, so I have plenty of things to work on this coming month.
Fair warning though. Next month Girl Scout cookie orders come. In, so I will be spending lots of time delivering cookies, as well as working at cookie booths. February is the most brutal month of the year for me. Add to it the fact that it’s also the month of Princess’ birthday and things get very crazy very quickly. I’m already having problems posting every night. Next month may get even worse, but I promise, I will do my best, because you know what? These creative challenges matter to me! I don’t know if anybody else really cares, but I do, so there.
These eyes take forEVAR to stitch!
I finally managed to sneak in some sewing time today. I know it doesn’t look like I got very far, but I’ve gotten one eye completely appliqued and the other is half-way done. Doing the satin-stitching on these appliques takes a lot of time. I am getting better at it, but this is not a quick thing to do. I finally got a larger needle (a 110/18) and switched to what seems to be a sturdier brand of thread. I also spent some time this afternoon doing some maintenance on my old Singer sewing machine. That sewing machine was given to me when I was about twelve years old, I think. It used to be set into a table that could be folded up to a small side table when the sewing machine wasn’t being used, but the table fell apart a couple years ago and now I just keep the sewing maching on a folding table I bought from Wally World.
I plan to finish the appliques tomorrow. I don’t know if I’ll get any further than that until this weekend. It’s shaping up to be a very busy week, and next week will be just as bad, so I’m working on projects a little bit at a time now.