Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Another Pointy Kitty

Elsie and I are leaving to go to Boise, ID tomorrow to visit my sister and her family. My niece will be celebrating her second birthday while we are there, so I've made her a bright and cheery Point Kitty...

When my sister saw the one I made for Back Tack and really, really liked it, we decided Miss Natalie needed one as well.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Coloring Book Daddy

Miss Elsie came into the family room last night clutching two fistfuls of markers. She marched up to David and asked "Can I color in your tattoo?" Fortunately for the spouse, the markers were Crayola washable ones. Elsie plopped down on the floor and got to work...

Then after finishing the technocolor dragon proceeded to apply some tattoos to herself....

The markers rinse off easily which is a good thing. Today, I thought Elsie was napping, so I took a nap too. However she was not napping and at some point applied some more tattoo artwork. So when I got up from my nap, Elsie had stripes on one arm, a colored in belly button, and a lady on her leg. Fortunately her wading pool was full of water... so in she went for some tattoo removal. I hope this phase doesn't last too long.

Back from San Francisco

We are back from an extremely hot San Francisco. While the spouse worked, Elsie and I had a great time shopping around and hanging out in Union Square...

Then she and I had dinner one night at the Floating Boat Sushi Restaurant in Chinatown.

Elsie was surprised to see boats rather than the usual conveyor belt. It was very exciting.
Our hotel room was really cool... (note the tiny bather peering over the edge of the tub)

Cool in the design sense, not cool in the heat sense. It did not have air conditioning and there was a heat wave on. I think it was in the 90's while we were there which is very unusual for San Francisco. I was hoping it would have been in the low 70's... which it was the week earlier. The hot temperatures and no AC made for some sleepless nights... especially since I get up every 3 hours to go to the bathroom.

Most of the rooms in the Hotel Des Artes are painted by graphic designers.
Ours was painted by Jet Martinez. The gold is all gold leaf. The location was great... right next to the China Gate around the corner from the Hotel Triton.... and the prices are really reasonable. I would recommend it for anytime, but in the heat of summer.

Of course Portland was at the end of a heat wave when we came home Sunday morning... and with the hot being completely closed for four days it was a balmy 87 degrees inside. Since the outside temperature was already nearing 90 degrees, there was no way to cool off the house. Finally today we've been able to keep the inside temperature under 80... much better... and my feet and ankles aren't swelling as much!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

It's my birthday!

Today is my 36th birthday! My birthday and Christmas are my two favorite holidays... and lucky for me they occur 6 months apart rather than right next to each other. It spreads out the goodies. I've borrowed an idea from my dear friend Stacey who celebrates her birthday the entire month of June rather that just one day. Genius! So I started celebrating Sunday with a trip to the antique expo. I love the summer one the best. The outdoor vendors have so many great textiles and vintage sewing goodies... and they are waaaay less expensive than the vendors inside (who always seem to have the same thing show after show).
I found this beautifully embroidered dresser scarf and two enamel pins. One pin was an absolute steal and the other was a bit of a splurge.... oh well, it's my birthday...

... and then some more vintage sewing patterns. They were $2 each which was reasonable....

Next I found this great tablecloth in a booth where everything was half off. I paid a whopping $5. There is one stain that I think I can get out and no tears...

The spouse bought me this fabulous calla lily drip glaze pot to add to my collection. Thanks, honey!!! He found it in a booth filled with tools and other dark things. Goes to show, it pays to really look hard sometimes.

... the little white pot was a birthday present this morning.... as well as these great pin cards...

which I think I will frame and hang in the basement studio... whenever that project is finished. Next photo are the lovely, handmade cards from Elsie. She is now drawing flowers and they are so adorable. I think this grouping needs to be framed and hung in her new bedroom... another project that needs starting and finishing.

And from my wonderful in-laws, these pink garden supplies. A brand new pair of leather gloves, garden clogs, and a kneeling mat. I'm so excited! My old leather gloves have too many holes and offer no protection from the roses... and the clogs are so cute and cheery. They will be a great replacement for my current garden clogs which the spouse has always called my "Ugly Shoes".

The birthday extravaganza continues tomorrow as we fly to San Francisco for 5 days! I can hardly wait to visit Britex - the ultimate fabric mecca. If the Greeks threw a fabric orgy, this would be the location... and it's within walking distance to our hotel... what could be better!

Monday, July 17, 2006

I'm making socks!!!

I have expanded my knitting skills and can know make these little bitty socks...

I am not a fan of the knit baby bootie. For some reason, they don't look right to me... so I've been making these little socks for our little man. Since he is due on October 2, the weather will be starting to cool and he may need some footwear. I had a three hour glucose test this morning and spent three hours in the waiting room, so was able to get quite a bit of knitting done. These little socks knit up fairly fast, and the spouse is happy to see some of my projects actually get finished.

Speaking of unfinished projects, here is Miss Elsie's sweater being blocked on my ironing board...

I hope I did this correctly. Things seem to be laying flatter. Now I just need to attach the sleeves and join the side seams. The picking up of the stitches at the neckline wasn't as difficult as I thought it would be. It was a good way to learn a skill that I needed for the socks. I can now see why a friend of mine prefers to pick up stitches at the armhole for the sleeves and knit down to the cuff rather than making separate sleeves and joining them.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

The great orchid growning contest....

About 5 years ago, the spouse and I went to Hawaii and brought back orchids for ourselves, my parents, and the in-laws. My father-in-law,Mac, is a natural green thumb and can grow anything... so he saw it as a challenge. So far I have killed all the orchids we had. My mom still has hers, but it has not rebloomed. Mac's died, but he was able to get it to bloom once which he showed off every time we were over. However, when Mac was yard sale-ing, he found someone selling a bunch of orchids. He bought some for himself and for me (to replace the crop I had decimated). I have had my orchid for 4 years with nothing. Maybe the occasional new leaf, but nothing bloom-like... until this week.

I have no idea what I did. It has been sitting in the same window for about a year. It hasn't been fertilized in probably 2 years, and I have a hard time remembering to water it. Maybe it thrives on neglect. For now I'm enjoying the beautiful bloom... I don't know if it will do it again.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Fresh blueberries....

Our blueberry bushes are producing heavily this year... YAY! I went out this morning a picked a bowlful for our breakfast...

...yummy! Some of them are 3/4" across and very, very sweet. Elsie and I enjoyed generous helpings with our cereal.
The tablecloth was my mom's when she was a little girl. It's kid sized for a tiny table.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Good things in the mail last week...

I love ordering things from the internet. Sometimes it takes so long for things to arrive that you have forgotten you ordered them in the first place and are pleasantly surprised by a box on your front porch.
Hillary posted a picture of some awesome Keds shoes. Little slip-ons... kind of ballerina-like. I gave up wearing shoes with laces about a month ago (too hard to reach past the belly) and these little ones were I ordered my own....

... that's Miss Elsie acting as hand model.
I also received my first order of stuff from Yes Asia. I had seen these sewing books on a few different blogs most recently on Crafting Japanese. The pictures are absolutely precious and all the patterns are in the back of the book.

ISBN 4-579-11091-9
ISBN 4-579-11054-4

They came really well packaged so not even the post office could damage them. They were individually bubble wrapped and wrapped again in plastic. I think I may be ordering some more books. Mariko at SuperEggplant has been making some darling things for herself out of another Japanese sewing book.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Project Update

Here is my progress on Elsie's sweater. This is what it is supposed to look like...

... and here is what I have knitted so far...

... It really rolls a lot. I hope this is normal. I will block the pieces before joining, so hopefully they will lay flatter. I had to purchase stitch holders for this project which means my skills are advancing... I think. I love to purchase new equipment. I have a whole sewing basket full of various needles, crochet hooks, and stitch markers. The next challenge with this project is picking up stitches which I have not done before. I have a how-to-knit book with good pictures and lots of friends who knit, so I should be able to figure it out. If not, I'll just head over to the Sipperie at the Yarn Garden and they can answer my questions.