Ms Crafty: where craftiness rules supreme...

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Double your pleasure, double your fun

I'm not talking about gum here, folks. I'm talking about the joys of double knitting. This past weekend I saw an adorable double knit scarf and here I am. I bought the book it came from and have embarked on an interesting journey. Having never actually done multi-color knitting (intarsia yes, fair isle no), the hardest part so far has been figuring out a good way to hold the yarn.

I chose a lovely red and orange merino wool combo

Which looks lovely together

But is kind of tough to work with at night in low light

Hopefully blocking will solve the uneven stitch issues...

Monday, January 30, 2006

Turns out I'm not the world's biggest chicken

To those who know me I'm pretty outgoing, but in certain social situations I'm quite the shy bird. I just moved to a new neighborhood, and am looking to meet like-minded crafties. While perusing yahoo groups, I found the chicks with sticks knitting group. They meet every Monday at 6:30 in Noe Valley.

Now anyone who's read Stitch 'n Bitch nation or recent articles on knitting has heard about these kids. Needless to say, for a socially shy gal like myself it took quite a lot for me to go solo to one of their get togethers--especially knowing that the turnout is usually 30-50 knitters.

Once I got home from work I kept psyching myself out. Finally I downed a glass of wine and just went for it. My heart was pounding as I headed into the back room of Bliss Bar. I felt like I was in high school or something. They definitely had their clicks, but seemed like a good, diverse group of knitters.

I'm glad I went. I didn't have too much to say, but I sat there and chatted the best I could and smiled a lot...hopefully they won't all run away when/if I go back next week...

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Welcome to Noe

It was such a gorgeous morning that we decided to go for a nice, long stroll around the 'hood. A few points of interest:

A tiny bit of Europe close to home.

Ari and Griffin

This one speaks for itself.

In case you'd like to abandon your children, please note that the local fire station is a safe place to do so...

Griffin and Ari

Keepin' it real, yo.

Funny, I always thought so, too.

Funny, I've always felt right at home in Europe--this just confirms it. My only question is, where would I get my yarn fix there?

You Belong in London

A little old fashioned, and a little modern.
A little traditional, and a little bit punk rock.
A unique woman like you needs a city that offers everything.
No wonder you and London will get along so well.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Knitted Xmas Gift #1 is Finally Complete

Finally, finally I have actual crafty news. It's been a while... Today I finished the fisherman's style sweater for my 1-year-old nephew. I know he's obviously too young to appreciate it, but hopefully his mom will.

There are of course, a couple of mistakes on the back panel in two cables, but at least that says hand made (or at least that's what I'm telling myself since the back was practically finished before I noticed).

Now, if I can just finish the million other xmas presents I started knitting all will be right with the world.

Friday, January 27, 2006

I'm LinkedIn, Baby

First there was Friendster. Then, there was mySpace. Then for a while orkut was rather popular. The latest craze seems to be LinkedIn.

Look, Ma, I'm networking!

In fact, I spent the whole morning, at the behest of my co-workers I might add, getting LinkedIn. I'm not really sure how this will help me. It's just so career foicused. I guess in a weird way it is interesting to discover where people have worked and who they might know. And I suppose that if I were to bother looking for another job, that it might be nice to find folks who have worked for that company and can forward on a resume or something...

Still...I think I prefer Friendster...because I'm so much more than just my job...

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Note to self: Stop buying shoes!

When it came time to embark on unpacking, I made a shocking discovery. I own at least 50 pairs of shoes. Really I do. In a typical month I probably wear about 5 pairs. Why, then, do I have so MANY pairs of shoes? I don't have an answer.

I love to buy new shoes. I love to buy fancy "going out" shoes, even though I rarely get a chance to strap 'em on.

New Year's Resolution: find places to go and wear at least one fabulous pair of shoes per month. (I like to make my resolutions doable, so this isn't super ambitious or anything). Also, get rid of at least 10 pairs of shoes I never wear.

Tomorrow--finally something craft related--updates on Holiday 2005 knitting.

Monday, January 23, 2006

I lost on Jeopardy--literally

Found during the move: this little gem of a letter.

Ever since I was a little girl I knew it was my mother's lifelong dream for her hyper intelligent daughter to be on Jeopardy. How did I know this? Why, she told me of course. The thing is, that though I'm decent at a game of Trivial Pursuit, I'm not by any means a "buff" of any sort.

But my mom had a dream, and dammit, I was going to have to try to live it out for her. She'd been bugging me about signing up for college Jeopardy for a couple 'o years. I'd always put it off. But, in my junior year of college, she'd had enough. She went ahead and signed me up herself.

And lo and behold this letter came in the mail. From the thousands of entries received, they had chosen me to come to New York City (where they supposedly know nothing of salsa) and try out in person.

Unfortunately, at the time I had boycotted a certain movie which was a remake of Valley Girl. And unfortunately for me, that was the one question I missed in the first round. Ugh. If only I had seen that movie or not had a mental block against it.

I did get to meet Alex, and he really wasn't the asshole I'd always thought he must be. He was actually quite a likeable chap.

I suppose that some day in the near future I'll have to try out again for my mom. Just so she can watch me fail miserably on national television. Of course, I could always sign her up...she does watch the show almost every night...I think they must repeat those questions every now and again...

Sunday, January 22, 2006

A simple plan

Ever wake up in the morning with a nice laundry list of things you're hoping to accomplish? Of course you have. Who hasn't. What I can't figure out is how I let most of the day slip away. I mean, the house isn't really unpacked enough to even feel like hanging out or dawdling around.

I guess I just dinked around on the net. *Sigh.* If only this darn house would start unpacking itself. I swear the boxes are breeding at night.

My moment of zen for the day - finding one last perfect cherry blossom on the tree out front.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

^*%$*&^ Varde

This has been my lament of late. Despite the stigma often attached to it here in NorCal, I am quite fond of IKEA and it's offerings. Until now. Why, you ask? The answer is simple--the Varde.

It's a kitchen island which comes in three large and heavy boxes. Usually IKEA items are simple enough to put together. You pull out the one sheet of instructions and away you go.

Not so with the Varde. First of all, when I opened a box and pulled out multiple large bags just of little hardware bits I knew trouble was afoot.

That was confirmed with the opening of the second box, which contained the 25 page instruction booklet. It wasn't until you opened the second package (and had things strewn about) that you found out a couple of things. First, this isn't a one-evening job. Second, you need other tools not provided to you by IKEA such as a vise (because you have to drill through metal--I'm serious).

Two days and some extremely creative tool use later, we finally got the thing together (and got the countertop oiled appropriately -- that would have been nice to know up front as well).

Of course, it's too wide to fit out of the front door, so either I'm living here forever or I'm selling this thing to the next tenant.

Still, it's gorgeous.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

I've been tagged

Though I've been completely ill ,and exhausted to date (and thus unable to blog), I simply cannot ignore a tag from Lo. So, here goes:

Four Jobs I've Had
1. Fry Gal - I spent a glamorous 7 whole days working at the Golden Arches pulling double shifts and generally being shat upon by my heartless co-workers.
2. Sandwich Artist - No, I didn't work for Subway. I worked for a small local sandwich shop making hundreds of sandwiches each lunch. I got so good that when they franchised they sent me to train the new folks how to make the sandwiches...and you wonder why I rarely eat tasty sandwiches...
3. Nanny - Once I'd had enough of making sandwiches, I decided to take an "easy" summer job as a nanny. I had to make breakfast, lunch, and dinner for two kids while doing housework and watching them nonstop. It wouldn't have been so bad except that once word got out in the 'hood all of the stay-at-home moms sent their children over to "play" in droves...
4. Radio DJ - for the local public radio station whilst I was in high school. I got canned for playing Wagner in the early morning (i.e. easy listening) slot.

Four Movies to Watch Repeatedly
1. Office Space. I live it, so why not watch it to help me keep my sense of humor.
2. Rushmore. Again, huge fan of the dark intellectual comedy...i cannot watch this movie enough.
3. Waiting for Guffman. Because we all know that nothing ever happens on Mars. It's boring, boring.
4. Donnie Darko. Can't get enough of this movie or it's moody soundtrack.

Four Cities of Residence
1. Chesapeake, VA. You've never heard of it, but it's right next to Virginia Beach, VA.
2. Harrisonburg, VA. It's primarily a cow and turkey town that just so happens to have a college (or at least that's the way it was when I went there).
3. Washington, DC. The only thing I miss are the historic homes, beautiful gardens and free museums. I don't miss being forced to listen to endless political discussion.
4. San Francisco, California. Just moved to a new hood (Noe Valley) and I'm loving it more than ever before.

Four Favorite TV Shows
1. The Office. The American version. If you work in an office and watched it past the pilot you know what I'm talking about.
2. My Name is Earl. I've always been a Jason Lee fan and I just love his character (not to mention his semi-retarded brother Randy)
3. Lost. I'm completely addicted to this show. I think it fills an old void left by 90210 only in a more dramatic and adult fashion.
4. Firefly. I missed this series when it was on, but I've managed to Tivo most of the episodes. Joss Whedon is a genius.

Four Vacation Destinations
1. Walt Disney World. Yes, the one in Florida. When I was in 5th grade, my family packed up the Volvo station wagon and drove for days down to Florida so that my sister and I could experience the magic of Walt Disney World. My only gripe was that I was too short to ride the really good adult rides.
2. Pennsylvania. Various places every summer of my childhood. My parents had some very dear friends whom we would visit for one week every summer. I don't know if you've been to small town PA, but there's only so much to do. We went to Hershey Park, Gettysburg, a miniature horse farm, the Ephreta Cloister, the Lebanon bologna factory, and various other assorted activities.
3. Euro Tour. Several years ago Griffin, his brother, his brother's now wife and I flew to Frankfurt, rented a car, and drove all over Europe for a month. It was mostly fabulous (although sometimes nights of drinking and subsequent road trips can be a bit tricky). We saw Prague, Ceske Krumlov, Vienna, Florence, Venice, Paris and many other towns. Had a wonderful time.
4. London. Just got back this fall from a fabulous trip to London with my folks. It was fun showing them around town and exploring. They had a great time, and it was wonderful to get to spend so much time with them (it was also sometimes a tad exhausting).

Four Web Sites I Visit Daily
1. Overheard in the Office. My co-workers and I have gotten some choice phrases posted there.
2. They (and New Yorker magazine) are my primary source of real news.
3. Crazy Aunt Purl. She's a 30-something divorcee knitter with several cats and a charming southern wit.
4. Yahoo Mail. I am absolutely addicted to checking my email. I check every 5 minutes when I can...

Four Favorite Foods
1. Dim Sum. Dim Yum. Specifically steamed barbeque pork buns. I'm salivating just thinking about one. Mmmmm.
2. Vietnamese spring rolls. Love those fresh shrimp, mint, rice noodless all wrapped up and dipped in spicy peanut sauce.
3. Dark chocolate. Almost anything with dark chocolate.
4. Pumpkin or squash ravioli. The best ever is here in SF at L'Osteria del Forno. It's worth the wait always.

Four Places I'd Rather Be Right Now
1. Curled up with Miss Mabel and Schmoo watching Tivo.
2. In a house without boxes (we're only 12% unpacked, if that).
3. At H&M getting some stylish new clothes.
4. Almost anywhere in Europe. If I could live and work there I probably would.

Four Bloggers Who Have to Answer These Same Questions, or Kittens Will Die. Or Something.
1. KnitsyBitsy. You've got a soft spot for kitties and would save them ALL if you could.
2. Janis. Save those kitties (or puppies) and give us all the 4-1-1.
3. Nootsmaak. Cause you certainly don't have anything better to do like, say, planning a wedding or something.
4. Um, sadly I don't know enough folks who'll admit to being bloggers. Lo would have been my fourth...

Well, kids, you're it. Tomorrow I'll have a moving update complete with pic(s). That's all folks.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

too sick to blog...

Friday, January 06, 2006

Home sweet home

So, tomorrow begins the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad thing which is moving. It is exhausting. It helps remind you that no one in their right mind needs to have so much stuff. It takes forever to get things straight in the new place (especially if you need furniture to fill it -- good luck with that it can take weeks).

It was with that perky, upbeat spirit that we moved our first carload over to the new place last night. I say perky, upbeat spirit, but what I really mean is person with a terrible attitude with a cold from hell which won't quit.

Anyway, we moved a load over and much to our surprise found out a few things that we had overlooked about the new place.

First, take a good look at the kitchen/living room looks nice and spacious right?

Right? Well, look again. What is missing from this picture?

If you said kitchen cabinets hanging on the walls give yourself a pat on the back and a cookie. There are no upper cabinets in this kitchen. I mean, where are the dishes supposed to go? I don't know about you, but something just doesn't seem right about putting dishes at floor level...also, there's no garbage disposal. I guess I can live without one, but it's nice not having stinky garbage stored up in the kitchen.

And the capper, folks, one of the bedrooms doesn't have a door. It does, however, have a lovely poo brown curtain. Guess we'll have to purchase a door among other things...

Next time I move, me and my knitting are going on vacation and I am hiring people to pack and move the stuff for me. I'm dead serious. I'll be sitting on a beach somewhere without a care in the world, knitting away, knowing that I'll be coming back to my new home.

Ah well, next time. As far as this time goes wish me luck. If I'm lucky we'll have tv and internet by Monday.

Just thinking about it all makes me want to lapse into a coma--boy that sure would hit the spot...

Monday, January 02, 2006

Dum dum da DUMB

After shopping for my sister's wedding this past Friday, somehow she managed to convince me that I should try on the wedding dress purchased in 1997 for a wedding that wasn't. She's been trying to convince me for years. I'm not sure why this year was any different (except for being 30) but this year I decided it would be hilarious to break it out. And with that I present a study on why 22 year old should not get married, and also why they should never be allowed to choose their own wedding dresses. See evidence below:

I hate bows. It's hard to remember back to 22, but I suppose at some point I must have liked them. *shudder*

That said, a giant bow on the bottom is NEVER a good idea. Not in any decade. It is NEVER in style. *sigh*

Front bow detail.

Front boob detail -- way, way too chaste for today's taste.

This thing even had bows on the sleeves. So many bows. And look at the profile. This thing has crenoline in the stomach area--cause everyone needs puffiness there.

It had a pretty long train, too.

I'll never quite know what I was thinking. I really wasn't. I just wanted to get the planning over with...

The only positive thing I can say is that at least after 9 years the damn thing still fits. And at least I was able to get a good laugh at my own expense.