Saturday, June 27, 2009

I'm going to do the unthinkable!

I bought my Ashford Traveller about 8 years ago. I don't spin on her often, though I love her to death. For many years, I have considered this, but never, ever, until now, did I ever make a final decision: I'm gonna take her apart and...

paint her! Yes. I will sand and paint my wheel. I am the kind of person who likes things to be individualized. I individualize educational programs for my job, I individualize knitting patterns, and yes, now I will individualize my wheel. I imagined going to insubordiknits workshop with my girl the way she is, and felt sad and dejected. This is not the wheel of my dreams. She spins well for me, but she needs a makeover. For years I have known this day would come. Today, somehow, I found my inspiration! Costa Rican ox carts. I have long admired beautiful tole-painted antique wheels, however, my artistic skill only spans fiber, not paint, nor especially, drawing. These are painted with simple stylized shapes with a standardized shading technique. I believe I can do this. I have been favoriting ox-carts on Flickr! all morning. I know. I have issues. The painting of the wheel is like a rebirth for her. To this day, she has no name. As soon as decided on a color scheme, a name hit me: Isabella. She is not Isabella yet, but she will be soon! I am painting her after my birthday dress. If you've ever seen my birthday dress, be afraid, be very afraid. This wheel will not be for the faint of hear. I'm a little nervous about the resale value and also, about my ability, however, there is no time like summer vacation to get started on yet another project!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

So, how was Boston? Day 1

OK. I'm exhausted. My body aches all over, I'd like to cut off my feet but it was SO worth it :D

On Friday, I woke up feeling much improved from the previous days' disease. I began to try to clean up the apartment, knowing that if I return to my cluttered, messy, dark apartment after spending the weekend in a fabulous bed and breakfast, I might just jump out my window. (I only live on the second floor, so I'd probably end up with a broken ankle, and worse off than before!) So, I began cleaning, using the gather and toss method, grabbing piles of fleece and fiber and yarn, UFO's, and whatever is supposed to be in the craft room, and tossing into said room, and closing the door. I gathered up the dirty laundry, made the bed, put all my shoes away, except for two pairs that I use often and did the dishes. I also cleaned out the car, replenished my first aid kit with pain killers and antacid tablets, packed up my emergency bikini kit and went to the carwash. Finally, I slipped on my shoes and ran out the door with all my crap. Running wildly now, I ran to the bank, went to Duncan Donuts and drove through the carwash. I was on my way!!!!!!!!
I had burned a few CD's for ride, New Order, Metal, Jazz, Tool, Goth, and New Wave. I planned on listening to the lighter stuff for the more pleasant parts of the trip, and listing to the metal CD which consisted of Tool, Metallica, Disturbed, Korn, and System of a Down when stuck in traffic. Well, no sooner did I get on the highway, I had to bust out the metal CD. Ugh. I continually hit pockets of traffic throughout the whole ride. For the most part, it was OK, though. I brought my lunch with me; tuna mac, homemade pickles and salt & vinegar chips. Somewhere in Connecticut, I stopped at a rest stop to use the bathroom. Inside the bathroom stall, I saw this:

Now I was mortified! I hurried back to the truck and realized that I didn't have another pair of shoes besides some vintage shiny chunky heeled sandals from my great-aunt. Shoe shopping would become the number one priority on this trip. Because my feet are so messed up, I wasn't looking forward to finding Crocs in a foreign town!
Well, the drive must go on. I made my way to Massachusetts easily, and found the B&B without too much incident.
The hosts were nice, if not distant. The property was gorgeous! I felt like a Victorian heiress. I wish I had knit that fancy dressing gown I saved in my favorites on Ravelry. It would have fit in perfectly with the decor! My room was a beautiful shade of green-blue. It was very nicely decorated, Victorian Minimalist, if there is such a thing! The first thing of order was to unpack. I dumped out my travel bag onto the bed, than took the whole pile and shoved it into the armoire. There. Just like home :) With nothing to do until A called me, I settled into the fancy window nook overlooking the street to read my book, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Just when our heroine started kicking zombie ass with her ankle dagger, A informed me that she had taken the day off and was ready for some fun. Yippee! She lives only 3 blocks from my weekend home, so she was there in minutes.
I was so excited to answer the door, and showed her around my home. It felt that way, as I seemed to be the only one there and I had a key for the front door. All my feelings of trepidation, "Will she like me?" "Will we get along?" were thrown out the window within moments. I was looking forward to all the weekend had to offer.
First, we went for a walk in the arborarium for look for frogs or toads. Studioloo on Rav was raffling off handspun for pictures of toads in the Story Time group, and I really, really wanted to win it. Unfortunately, between the fact that I am an amphibian repellent extraordinaire and A was yelling, "Hey, frogs! Where the hell are ya?" I think our chances of seeing one were cut to slightly impossible. We had a nice time, but my feet were really hurting. Next, we went to eat Thai food. We both asked for spicy, but the waitress talked us out of it and we were both satisfied with the level of heat in our meals. Besides, we had Thai iced tea, and that fixes everything! My tummy had been bothering me all day, so I chose to get most of my meal wrapped up for later. It was delish, though. Chicken and Pineapple Fried Rice. Mmmm.
We returned to A's pad, and I met her funny neighbor and her sweet hubby. He was slightly tramatized by all the giggling and laughing. And I tend to talk really, really loud when I'm that excited. We had some absinthe, (and A, I'm so sorry, I tried so hard to like it, but I just couldn't-I'll keep working on it!) and messed around on Rav, (of course!) and talked some more. I left with a bag of mohair and sweet knitting dreams. A walked me back to the B&B and I went to bed about 1. I even took off my shoes so I could sneak upstairs. Just like home!

Stay tuned to the next installment of "So, how was Boston?"

Thursday, June 18, 2009

It's the Final Countdown!!!

Boston is on my mind. Diamondgirl and I are going to have fabulous time!!!!!!!! In any case, I'm crazy as a batt. I've been carding up something fierce in hopes of swapping out some of my stash that I've had forever for some brandy new fibery goodness. Now I'm ending up with the same problem as with my yarn and my clothes. What will I really use? I don't spin for big projects. Maybe I'll stick to art yarns for fun and luxury yarn for nightgowns and such. We'll see :D

I dragged all my stuff out of the craft room in an attempt to organize it and have only discovered that it is a mess and will not be tamed. Imagine an area where I can actually sit or spin or read. What's that? I seriously need to rethink that space. My crap has spilled out into every windowsill, corner and table in the house
In other news, a casting on frenzy has ensued. I started a hot water bottle cozy for dad, a sisal cabled doormat, D's bikini and I don't plan on stopping here. I'm sick, I tell you. Sick.
I really should start burning my music collection now. 5 hours is a long time without the ability to control my music.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Sick, I'm freakin' sick!

So it's vacation and I'm sick. It's like deja vu from my school days. I've always been sick on either Christmas or Easter vacation, but SUMMER! What gives? I have a laundry list of things I'd like to get done, and here I am all stuffy and sneezy and sick to the stomach in bed writing in my blog. Well I joined a new group on Rav and it's called Story Time. We are reading "The Borrowers", a book I feel like I should have read but never got around to. In any case, there are activities to go along with the chapter and DH and I tackled the first one last night. Hubby and I went to the pond to find a toad. We failed our mission. All we found was this:

Where the hell do you find a toad? I'm obsessed with winnning Studioloo's handspun. I think our next adventure will be in the cemetary at Houdini's grave. Maybe he can conjure up a toad for me from the dead.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

More Bang for the Buck!

I had a whole day planned for garage sale-ing, but seeing as I'm broke and have to bring the car in for oil change and new brakes this week, decided to forgo my thrify adventure and only go to the annual Salvation Army sale in the office by my apartment. I had been there before and have vivid memories of a Pyrex Stovetop Coffee Maker which I was keen on for a few bucks, but unfortunately, not being a coffee drinker and knowing nothing about Pyrex coffee makers, passed it by, thinking it may not have all the parts. Later that day, I couldn't stop thinking about it and went back, but alas, it was gone! (I obsessed over that coffee maker until I finally won one on eBay. I believe it is a thing of both beauty and function.) Getting back to the Salvation Army, last year, the sale was upstairs in a large room with lots of big windows and was quite inviting. This time, the sale was in the basement. There was not nearly the amount of stuff as last year, however, I scored huge in the designer clothes that fit me category as well as printed sheets for my next hare-brained scheme. Go to Flickr! for the details :P

While hoarding a load of stuff in my arms, I tripped over something on the floor, looked down and realized I was standing in the middle of a bowling lane. I almost fell in the gutter! It always makes me sad to see stuff like that. The bowling lanes at the Hunter College 23rd Street Campus are in such a state of disrepair, but we keep using them anyway. I wish people would be able to save stuff like that.

Well, anyway, I am excited to be adding stuff to my wardrobe that I can possibly use that fits me and is in good shape. If I don't wear it in a year, it's going to have to go. I'm on vacation now, and even though I'm starting to get sick, I think I will be productive. I have finally read Anthony Bourdain's "Kitchen Confidential" and cracked up all the way through. It took me so long to want to read it since I was living that lifestyle (minus the cocaine and heroin habit) and I didn't feel the need to read about it. Everyone I know read it and it may as well have been assigned reading at the CIA. Now that that has been in another lifetime, it was fun to revisit it for a few hours. I feel like everything he said is true. I have never met a baker who wasn't somewhat out of his mind. The pastry shop really is a civilized haven in the bowels of the kitchen. Cooks do talk about their dicks all the time. His characters could have been any number of people I have met in that business. He really made me laugh, and I love that I could hear him telling me the book in his voice in my head. I also love that I only have one degree of separation from him, and have possibly been in the same place where he was either hanging out or working , and maybe even ate his food. Weird.
This brings me to my husband. I think one of the main reasons I can be around him is because of my time in the kitchen. He is a cook. I realized this today. He's witty and bawdy and rude, curses like a sailor, is upfront, concise, methodical and all the things one needs to survive in a kitchen. He smells like a cook when he comes home from work and he works in a bakery! Even if he never steps foot in a kitchen again, the truth of the matter is, he will always be a cook. At times it can be infuriating, however, I wouldn't change it for the world :)
OK, zombie time. My husband has been killing Nazi zombies on the TV, and I'm preparing for zombie attacks in real life. My summer reading list includes The Zombie Survival Guide and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. I'm very excited, but also sad that I will devour them in a night or two. Twilight series is after that, as after all the zombie action, I think it's important to switch it up to other manifestions of the living dead (or undead as they may be).
To delay the quick start and finish of my zombie studies, I started reading a book about vintage clothing called "Alligators, Mink, and New Money" by Alison Houtte. It's pretty cool. I like knowing about the designers she names and her business venture. I'll have it finished in the morning, I'm sure. Signing off for now. I'm tired, my throat hurts and I don't want to wake up at 4:30 in the morning, like I have been now for two damn weeks.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


So here are the pics of my finds this weekend, plus the carding I did. The mohair locks were a bit felty, but that's ok. They're going into an art yarn. The ribbons don't have a plan for now. I'm just happy I have them! The green batt is the first of the colorway "Forest" I will make. Don't know what for yet, or if it is done. I'm not fond of the way the glitz is distributed. Lastly, the green and pink was made from drumcarder waste, all carded together. Will probably end up as art yarn, too.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

My blog is dying...

Poor bloggity blog. No one reads you. The blame is surely on me, as I have been slacking reading other people's blogs and therefore have not been publicititizing you properly! That's ok though. You're here for me when I need you. One week left before vacation and I'm holding on by a thread (probably literally because I'm surrounded by it anyways.) I'm a little dejected about vacation, as I always want to do a zillion things, and end up on my lazy bum doing nothing. Here's a list of things I would do if I were inclined:
  • finish painting the bedroom walls and furniture that I started two years ago
  • clean up the craft room so I can find the sewing machine
  • finish sewing my bedskirt, my rockabilly fair dress, my swing top, the chair pads and make some more stuff
  • work on fiber prep, spinnning and UFOs
I may have to make a schedule for myself. It seemed to work ok last time, so hopefully it will work again. It appears that if I don't do something in the morning, the whole day is lost, watching Clean House and Spongebob.
This week I've been obsessed with ripping fabric. So far I have two balls. I also am slightly obsessed with the idea of making rugs. I've been shopping for fabric to rip and plan on hitting the thrift shops later to get some! Maybe I found my niche on etsy? We'll see. I did some drum carding with some practically felted fiber and it's a dream now. I really like it but feel like it's not finished, so I have to go back to it. I'd like to finish carding that colorway up. It's probably going to be about 4 oz. I need a big diz to make a roving out of my batts. Pulling it worked OK, but I want it thick and even. Practice and the right equipment will improve my skills.
Also, today we're going to the Renegade Craft Fair and it's very exciting. I've wanted to go for a few years, but never knew about it 'till it was over. Thanks to Rav's new event calendar, I actually found out in time. Cool! What shall I wear?
Lastly, J and I went back to the garage sale and were in heaven. The lady charged us 50 cents a yard on all the trimmings and I can't wait to get pics of all the booty. And I also got a BCBG silk top for $4, from a girl who wanted it to go to someone who would look good in it. I was very flattered. She wanted $10, but I only had $4 left from all the trimmings I got, so she said OK.
In other news, Yippee! I'm a natural redhead, at least till my roots start growing in. I suck at dyeing my roots. I also made bananan bundt cake for breakfast from this recipe from It came out pretty good. There was leftover coconut topping from my pie last week, so I used it in the middle of the batter. It was so yummy, I might do it again on purpose!

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