Sunday, January 23, 2011

I have a confession

I bought yarn. One ball... it was on sale... and organic. lol

Hmm, and a cute little tape measure too. =) I visited a new (to me) yarn shop this weekend, one I'll not likely return to. Why? Because it's near here:

Yep, I'm back on the road!

I got an email at 1p Monday asking if I could travel. By 1:30, I had a ticket to San Francisco... at 6p. Crazy? Yes! But I got a shower, got packed and hit the road for the airport in an hour and a half. Amazingly, I only forgot to pack a few minor things. lol

It's been over 6 months since I've been on a plane. With the change of time zones, late arrival and not having had to be up, dressed and in an office by 8a in months, I'm exhausted. Didn't stop us from heading out this weekend for some sightseeing though! Another coder wants me to teach her to knit after seeing my sweater in progress (I almost have both sleeves finished!), so we headed to ImagiKnits Saturday morning for some yarn and needles for her. She picked out some beautiful yarn for a scarf and a pair of bamboo needles. I tried, but didn't leave empty-handed. Surprise! haha At least it was only the one ball. I'm thinking it'll make a nice cowl.

We then headed to Fisherman's Wharf and Ghirardelli Square.

It's no longer a chocolate factory, but it is a great shopping center... and yes, we came away with chocolate. =)

And a little something-something for the pooch. =) The dog on the bag? She's the Yap shop dog and is the sweetest little thing. If my dog were a girl, I would have been tempted to buy an adorable set of pink bunny socks... but alas, Reilly is a boy and will not be wearing pink bunny socks. heh While looking for an image online to share, I found these:

So freaking cute! And totally pointless. lol

After a little shopping (and spending way too much money, but I got a couple birthday gifts taken care of), we took a city tour on one of the motorized trolleys that went over Golden Gate Bridge. We had a great tour guide and had a lot of fun, getting to see a good chunk of the city without dealing with the crazy traffic.

They weren't kidding about the hills here. I can't imagine anyone here doesn't have buns of steel!

I really like this city. It's seems so dog-friendly and the people have been so nice. If I weren't already set on moving to Vancouver, I might very well be tempted...

But I'd definitely sell my car...

Sunday, January 16, 2011

All in a day's work

I'm now back to one job... and I have to say, this has been an awesome weekend!

The difference between working a 75-hr week and a 40-hr week? Time.

Time to cook:

(vegan mac & cheez from scratch - the ultimate comfort food! cookbook)

Time to bake:

(vegan chocolate mint brownies - YUM! cookbook)

Time to snuggle with my favorite furry kids:

Time to even play with a bit of string:

Yes, my friends, that is a sleeve. =) Okay, half a sleeve. Anyway, awhile back, Virginia posted this sweater on her blog and it quickly made it's way into my queue. This sleeve will become part of this sweater:

(image from the book)

but, of course, in this from my stash:

(much closer to the true color - the sleeve was a quick cell phone shot)

My local library doesn't have the greatest selection, but they seem very open to suggestions... So I suggested these:

(New England Knits and Brave New Knits - Thanks again, Virginia, for the recs on both.)

You're welcome, Crawfordsville knitters. =) It took awhile, but both are now in my hot little hands... and not a penny out of pocket. Although I will happily say, both may make it into my collection after the move as both contain multiple patterns I adore (and I still have credit on my B&N gift card)! Until then, borrowing will do.

That was just day one of my first weekend off in months. Today, it's bean burgers and... I'm open to suggestions. =)

Thursday, January 06, 2011

A little blue

One more little critter for my little critters.

These guys are great to work on between (or as a break from) larger projects. I have absolutely nothing in the works, but I got a new knitting book for my birthday yesterday. Off to browse for inspiration...

Monday, January 03, 2011

Monkey Love

Thought the kitties could use a little monkey love (ravelry link with details). =)

He did get to venture outside to play before I handed him off to the cats though. =)

He monkeyed around a bit...

I think he was on the floor all of 20 min before a certain little canine snagged him. He's now a little hard of hearing. This is why Reilly doesn't get handmade toys. The cats don't seem to mind his handicap though.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Happy 1-1-11!

How the heck is it 2011 already?!

Looking back over the past year, it hasn't gone quite as I planned.
  1. I did pretty well on the "knit only what I want to knit" plan and again will make this a priority. I think I finally got over my issues with frogging (and admitting a project needed to be frogged) and either finished WIPs or frogged those that needed to be. I now have ONE project going. Not saying I'll always stick to one project at a time, but I'll definitely be keeping a better handle on them and not letting WIPs hibernate forever anymore. Finish it or frog it! =)
  2. I also wanted to learn to crochet. I finished almost 2 dozen crochet items last year! I was shocked when I looked at my projects and realized it was that many, esp since it's felt like I haven't been crafty much at all in ages. Sure, most were small projects, but still. I have another one nearly finished. Just need to crochet another arm, two legs and a tail. 
  3. The stash, well, we won't talk about that one other than to say I have a serious yarn addiction... one that I really need to break. I guess I could be addicted to worse things.
  4. My big exercise plan didn't come to fruition either. *sigh* Yeah, that's something else I need to work on. I've spent way more than my fair share of time on my bum in front of the computer, esp the past couple months. I purchased a couple new exercise DVDs and will try to motivate myself to start doing those! I did, however, go vegan this year! I've been vegetarian since I was around 12 and have been eating mostly vegan for years, but still caved to diary (mostly cheese) and rarely eggs. No more! I finally made the leap around October of this past year. I always read labels now and several of my old favorites are no longer making it into my grocery cart. I'm not eating as healthy as I'd like to say, but knowing I'm not supporting industries I don't agree with does make me feel more at peace (even if I am still eating too much processed junk and sugar).
  5. Moving. Didn't happen this year due to an unforeseen lack of funds from too much down time from work. I did buy a small box trailer to move my stuff west... and am planning the trip for this Spring! Boxes are starting to be packed... just waiting on things to thaw out. =)
So what's new for 2011 (other than a new address)?
  1. I'm working out plans for another career change.  Medical coding pays the bills, but I don't love it. I want to love what I do (or at least like it most of the time) with that many hours of my life... even if it may not pay as well (at least for awhile).
  2. I'm also applying my newly vegan ways to areas other than food in my life. Yep, that means no more animal fibers for the stash (or clothing). I decided that I'm okay with using what I have, but I won't be purchasing any new alpaca, wool, cashmere, etc for the stash. That should slow any stashing. lol Acrylics have gotten much better over the years, but I prefer natural fibers. That leaves linen, bamboo, cotton, hemp, soy, etc. Still plenty to choose from, but not as easy to come by around here (other than cotton, which I have plenty of). I need to do some research though as I've heard the processing of some of those fibers is quite harsh on the environment. Bamboo, I've heard, is really bad. I need to read up before I make any decisions. I've decided I want to make monthly goals this year. So, for the next month, I won't buy any yarn. None.
  3. I want to focus more on cooking with whole foods this year and skipping the overly-processed convenience foods I've been relying on too much lately. I feel so much better when I cook real food. It really doesn't take that much time to make things from scratch and I know exactly what's gone in there (not to mention that it usually tastes better too!). I've already been choosing organic whenever possible. I'll be so happy once I'm near a farmer's market with organic produce available! There's a very small market here in the summer, but I rarely find anything organic there.
  4. I think I need a new craft as well. I'd love to learn to weave this year! I also want to improve on my new crochet skills. =)
The trend seems to be leading me toward a simpler, cleaner way of life. I've been heading in this direction for a long time, but it's time to make changes for good. =)