A Good Yarn

Monday, February 28, 2005

New Beginnings

Once again, it was a busy weekend. I wish I could work 4 days per week for longer hours, but that just doesn't really work with my job. The weekends go so fast and I try to fit too much into them. Saturday I managed to finally get a little laundry done and clean a little, but there's still a lot to be done. I need the magical skills of Samantha on Bewitched or Harry Potter.

Saturday night I went over to my friend, Kerry's house. She helped me to try dying my pink yarn for the Florentine Flattery sweater. It was so fun to see how all the different colors looked. We got one that looked close, but after it was dry, it is still not right. We're gonna try again and see if we can get closer. I have been contemplating ripping the whole thing out, but I hate to lose all those months of work. Kerry also gave me some of her hand-made soaps. They're awesome!! I can't wait to try them out. Kerry started a blog - check it out!

Kerry and I decided to take a little trip to Maryland Sheep and Wool this spring. It'll be a fun long weekend! We made all of our travel arrangements on Sunday morning, so it's all set. Now I have to stop spending money so I'll have a nice bankroll to work with in May. I've been doing pretty well with not buying crafty stuff for the last couple of weeks. I did buy a new pair of eyeglasses on Friday though. I've had my current pair for about 5 years, so I really have been wanting to freshen up my look. Marshall Fields had a trunk show, so I had hundreds of pairs to choose from and fell in love with a pair of Ralph Lauren half-rimmed metal frames.

Sunday afternoon Bill, Beth and their kids and I went out for brunch and then the boys and I went to Kidfest. I think they had a great time. They were able to hold a monkey and an alligator, which was really cool.

Sunday night I attended my friend, Robin's, annual Oscar Party. Every year she has a contest. Whoever picks the most awards correctly wins the floral centerpiece. I think I've won every year since she started having the party. This year I tied, which was cool. This was my share of the flowers:

As you can see, she chose purple and yellow for me, which I figured would ruin my chances of winning. I felt very unsure about my picks for Best Actress, Director and Picture and chose wrong on all three categories. I originally picked Eastwood and Baby and then changed my mind because I thought they might finally honor Scorsese for his brilliant career, but not so much. And then I was torn between Blanchett and Madsen and chose Madsen because I thought they might want to recognize Sideways with more than one award, but alas no. I had a feeling those Best Picture and Director awards might ruin my chances to win, but luckily I still tied with 16 correct. She also has a trivia question for a smaller prize and I got that one right also - I won those little Oscar candies at the bottom of the picture.

New Projects

With all the FOs you've seen on this page, I've been able to cast on a couple of new projects. I finally started my Mariah for the knitalong:

As you can see, I chose another bright pink color. This is some of my Berella Muskoka stash - one of my favorite yarns which has been discontinued, so I buy it up on eBay occasionally. It's 100% merino superwash, so it's very soft and machine washable. It was very affordable too. This is the first sleeve on Mariah and so far I really like. I love cabled projects!

I also started the Rainbow Bag kit for our Beaded Knitting Group Knitalong:

This shows the side of the flap that I'm going to fold down, since I like the other side better. This is a little envelope style bag knitted in Gems Topaz Merino. I really like this yarn. It's also 100% merino wool. All of the beads are different types of beads, so it's been fun to try out all those different types of beads. I'd only ever used seed beads on my knitting before, but these other shapes work pretty well and open up some other good possibilities.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

And The Winner Is.....

It's one of my favorite nights of the year - The Academy Awards. I love the recognition of fine work and as a list addict, I love the "Top Five" Films, Actors, etc. I love watching the stars and seeing their clothes, hair, jewelry, etc. I love a funny or a touching speech. I love predicting who is going to win and figuring out who I would vote for.

I like the choices of the Independent Spirit Awards even more most years. This year was probably no exception. My favorite movie swept all of its categories and my favorite documentary won it's category. Here are my picks for this year:

Renee's Top Ten Movies of 1994

1. Sideways
2. Before Sunset
3. Million Dollar Baby
4. Hotel Rwanda
5. The Aviator
6. Metallica: Some Kind of Monster
7. Born Into Brothels
8. Bright Young Things
9. Control Room
10. Finding Neverland

And in a special category, the funniest movie I saw this year was Anchorman.

Saturday, February 26, 2005


Back to knitting content :-)

I finished up the Ruffles scarf for the Red Scarf Project:

I made it shorter than the version in the book because I didn't want to buy another skein of yarn. One skein of Fiesta La Luz does make a scarf that is 4' long. This is plenty long to wear straight, wrapped once or my favorite look, doubled up. Just wrapping it around a few times like a twist tie also looks really cute. If I made one for myself, I think I'd use two different colors for the two sides and thus make it longer so you could wrap it around the neck a couple of times. As you can see, it sort of looks a bit fuzzy and worn already. As I've heard, this yarn doesn't wear extremely well, but a decorative scarf doesn't get a lot of wear.

I loved knitting this scarf and once again, I love Scarf Style. Susan posted a link to a story about the popularity of knitting socks. One yarn shop owner is quoted as saying that people who knit socks knit for the process and people who knit scarves knit for the product. I don't really agree with that. Maybe if all you knit is scarves, but I definitely knit for the process and just love knitting scarves and trying out new patterns and yarns. Just as addictive as socks, which I've also knit without going crazy about it as she also says sock knitters do.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Deep Purple Wednesday

So, Moss is gone from the Vikings. I have mixed feelings. It makes the decision about whether to renew our season tickets for another year even harder.

On The One Hand

Randy Moss seems to be a real jackass. He's about as immature as they come and seems to have problems with impulse control. Squirting a bottle of water at an official is incredibly stupid. Refusing to stop your car when asked to (however belligerently) is asinine. Saying you'll play when you want to play and walking off the field when your teammates are still playing and ignoring words of advice from said teammates aren't conducive to good team chemistry, which is crucial in the NFL. Pretending to moon the crowd at Lambeau is funny, but really really juvenile. It appears that he's worn out his welcome among some of his teammates, which just so happen to be my favorites, Daunte Culpepper and Matt Birk. My all time favorite Viking, Robert Smith, sounded positively giddy about the move when he was interviewed yesterday. Of course, Moss and Smith nearly came to blows in the lockerroom before one game. Moss missed 5 games last year and often when a wide receiver gets injured, they don't come back. He's struggled with ankle injuries his entire career. You don't build a team around a wide receiver. This team has had very limited success with Moss on the team and even with the highest scoring offense in the history of the NFL, they couldn't get to the Super Bowl, much less win it.

But On The Other Hand

It seems hard to believe a team can get better getting rid of a future hall of famer and one of the best players in the league. Moss is a game-changing player. Without him in there, Culpepper will see defenses he's literally never seen before. #84 certainly made Daunte look good at times. The running backs may regularly face 8 men in a box, so losing Moss may hurt all aspects of the offense. The off the field antics have been blown way out of proportion and are irrelevant if they don't matter to the success of the team. Harris does not seem to be the type of outstanding defensive player I would have been looking for in trading Randy Moss. The #7 overall pick does not guarantee success - some very disappointing players have been picked that early in the draft and the Vikings don't have a stellar record in drafting defensive players.

No matter how you look at it, Moss did provide some great enjoyment over the past 7 years that I've been a season ticket holder. If only for that, I'll miss him. And, so, I present:

My Top Three Favorite Randy Moss Moments

#3 Vikings v. Saints, 2000 Season Playoffs

Randy takes a short pass and turns it into 6 points. Twice. My favorite was on the left side of the field. Two players have a perfect angle on him. But Moss is too fast and they can't catch him. I've never seen a human being move so fast in my life.

#2 Vikings v. Broncos, 2003

Moss appears to be tackled. But wait, the ball is coming out. No way! He's just tossed it to Moe Williams, who runs in for a touchdown. It was right in front of our seats, so I had a great view. I couldn't believe my eyes.

#1 Vikings v. Packers, Monday Night Football, 1998

I wasn't lucky enough to see this in person, but we watched the game at Porter's, my favorite football viewing bar. The Vikings were undefeated, but it was still pretty early in the season. Brad Johnson was injured, but Randall Cunningham seemed to be filling in nicely. The Moss draft was somewhat controversial, but I liked what I had seen so far. Everyone was talking about whether the Vikings had a chance to win the game. Both teams were undefeated. But the Packers were unstoppable at Lambeau Field. It was a rainy Monday night in the not yet frozen tundra. And Moss introduced himself to the rest of the world. In my all time favorite Moss moment, Moss catches the ball, then literally steps over a Packer defender on his way to the end zone. The energy and excitement I felt leaving that night will never be matched. That was when I knew this was a special team and a special year. I'll leave it at that.

Oh, and my favorite tv show is definitely NFL Football, but I didn't think that really was the type of show they were talking about in the Meme below.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

My Secret Pal is awesome!!

I received another box from my Secret Pal! It has a "Spring is Coming" theme, which is perfect since we got a big snowfall on Sat/Sun this week. Everything is covered in snow again, so it's looking very wintery.

She sent another 11 skeins of the Purple Piuma that she sent in the last package. WOW!!! This is a really good batch of this yarn, so I've gotta figure out something good to knit with it. Also included:

Look at that cool card. I love it! I hung it up in my office and it makes me smile every time I look at it. I also got another really cute candle - this one looks like a flower in a clay pot. The pen is a very pretty purple satin rose. The top circular thing is a pill box with a really pretty purple lotus on top. Under that is a gorgeous broach - I'll be wearing that quite a bit! She also included a telephone calling card, which I already used to make a couple of calls.

A couple of little cuties. I love hedgehog faces!! If I wasn't afraid that my dogs would it one, I would definitely get a hedgehog. When I was a docent at the zoo, I loved working with the hedgehogs.

Ok, bad picture. I actually took that picture in a pitch black room because there are little fiber optic lights all over it and it's so cute. Unfortunately, my camera threw off a lot of flash so you can't see the lights. It's really cute though and I love stuff with fiber optic lights!

Lovely window hanging. So many great treats - thanks Secret Pal, you rock!!

TV Meme

I was the Secret Pal for Jenn in the last go around and had a ball picking out stuff for her - she and I have a similar sense of fun and a fondness for toys. She tagged me on the TV Meme that's going around, so it's my pleasure to share my tv watching habits with you:

1. How much space is left on your TIVO? I don't have a TIVO, but I tape things like a madman and have tons of tapes stacked around the house. My brother constantly teases me about the fact that I'm watching shows that aired months ago because I have so many things to catch up on.

2. Have you ever bought a DVD of a tv series and if so which one? I love watching tv and most of my knitting is done while watching tv, so I've bought quite a few DVDs of tv shows: Arrested Development, Kids in the Hall, The Office, Bullshit, Homicide: Life on the Streets, Mr. Bean, 24 and Band of Brothers if you count that. I also am currently watching The Dead Zone, which I borrowed from my friend, Matt. I also have Coupling and Sex and the City on loan from Netflix and have a lot of TV shows on my waiting list. I am seriously considering buying Boomtown and Deadwood. When Rescue Me comes out on DVD, I'll buy that too. I want to buy Oz, but I don't want to pay full price, so it's on my wishlist at Half.com

3. What was the last tv show you watched before reading this message? Judging Amy. I like that show a lot because it reminds me a lot of my own work, but everything always works out in the end on Judging Amy. And in my mind, I like to pretend I look like Amy Brenneman.

4. List five shows you won't miss: As mentioned above, I tape everything that I like that I can't watch live, so there's a lot of shows I don't miss. I also have both an east coast and west coast feed of the networks on my dish, so I can watch shows that air at the same time later on the west coast feed. So, I'll list my five favorite shows currently on tv:

Arrested Development
The Sopranos
The Wire

5. Who are the other three people you are going to tag?

I'll keep the theme going and tag MY Secret Pal the last time around, Kim.
I'll tag the other Renee because our first contact was about CSI:Miami.
Finally, I'll tag Jen because I'm intersted in seeing what her answers are.

Ladies, if you're interested, take it away!

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Did you miss me?

It's been a while since my last post. It's been a very busy week at work. Part of the problems I was working on you can see below - one of our servers completely died, so I was trying to facilitate getting that problem resolved. It's partially solved, but not completely.

It's a sickness, really

I often wonder whether people who are very regimented and structured are drawn to the legal profession or whether law school beats that into your brain. I know there's a process during which you learn to "think like a lawyer". It's probably some combination of the two. In any case, these "skills" spill over beyond just the job and I'm somewhat regimented and rules-based in my knitting.

I always have three projects going at one time, which I alternate on a daily basis. For me, this is the optimal mix of having different things to work on to keep from getting bored, but still being able to finish things up on a regular basis. I always only work on one project per day - if I finish a project, I move on to non-knitting activities for the rest of the day and if I don't want to knit on the project that is in rotation, too bad. Occasionally I'll mix up the order if I'm going to be traveling and one project is more portable.

Poncho Update

As I think I mentioned before, I finished up half of the poncho for my niece, but it was too small. I will give that poncho to a friend for her younger daughter, but I didn't feel like finishing that up right away since I have so many other projects waiting to be cast on. So, I had to either get more of the same yarn or perhaps change to a different, more eyelashy yarn. I decided to go to Limited Too and see if they still had the poncho that inspired my niece. I didn't want to cast something else on until I figured out the poncho situation, so I decided to spend a day beading instead.


I bought the bigger beads for this necklace a couple of weeks ago, so I decided to make them up. I bought a seed bead mix for a completely different project, but this mix matches the necklace exactly - what luck!

Here's a closeup of the pretty beads:

Love those colors and that look like dichroic glass.

I had a little more time, so I made some more beaded stitch markers with my red bead mix.

BTW, the Limited Too poncho was on clearance, so I just bought the poncho she originally wanted and am going to skip the knitting altogether. I'll finish up the poncho for my friend after I get a couple of other projects out of the way.

Valentine's Day Update

When last I posted it was Valentine's Day. Bill and Red gave me a box of candy the week before (they're not so good at waiting once they've bought something), so I figured it was going to be a normal every day Monday. WRONG! I came into my office and found a box sitting on my desk. It was from Susan and contained my favorite combo platter:

Chocolate! and

Isn't she a peach?!! She read that I love Tahki Cotton Classic so she sent me a few skeins. One of the reasons I love this yarn is because it comes in such awesome colors and this mix doesn't disappoint! And did you see that cute tissue paper?

Renee's Reviews

After such a long, stressful week, it felt good to have a fairly relaxing weekend. Saturday was the monthly Ample Knitters Twin Cities get together. I had to miss it last month, so it was really good to see everyone again and do a little group knitting. A group of people headed over to Needlework Unlimited for their big sale, but I was disciplined and skipped it. Later I saw this movie:

Loved it. There were so many scenes that I just loved. Any scene between Howard Hughes and Katherine Hepburn. The scenes where Hughes is struggling with his sanity. The scene where Hughes visits the Senator in his hotel room. DiCaprio did a great job with a character who is not very likeable, but you still sort of root him on and want him to be successful in battling his demons.

Today is my nephew, Michael's birthday, so Sunday we went to Mall of America to eat dinner and let him do some birthday shopping at Legoland. We had hoped to go to Underwater World also, but they closed before we had a chance to get there. I decided to only work a partial day yesterday, so Michael and I joined Bill and Red and Beth and her two kids for lunch and then a trip to the zoo. Michael and Red have gotten together a few other times, but now that Red is in school, the age difference between them doesn't seem to be such an obstacle. They both enjoy playing with the same toys now, so it would be cool if they could get together more often.

FO Report

I managed to get a little knitting in too and finished up a couple of things. First up I got the Berroco yarn from eBay and was able to knit the turtle neck on my sister's sweater:

I have mixed feelings about this project. Laura picked out the pattern from Vogue Knitting. The pattern calls for cotton chenille, but I had some alpaca in the stash that I decided to use. It feels soft to the hand, but when you are wearing it against your skin, it is really scratchy. So, I'm not sure she's going to wear it anyway. The pattern calls for a chunky cotton chenille for the turtleneck, but I wanted to something really soft and not scratchy, so Laura chose this cotton/acrylic blend. It does feel good, but it looks kinda weird because the color is so different. It looks a bit better on than in that picture laying on the floor, but I didn't want to photograph it on me since it's too small for me to wear.

The second FO was more successful:

A hat to match the booties. It's pretty cute. I decided to keep the front flap off since I just didn't like it. I should have attached the flaps to the Plush so that they come down longer, but it was easier to sew Suede to Suede. I think Saralee will like it anyway and hopefully it will fit the baby. I called her today to schedule a lunch to get together and give them to her.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Happy Valentine's Day!

We have a snowy Valentine's around here. Almost all of the snow had melted away, but we had a very heavy snowfall yesterday:

The dogs are loving it, especially Finbar.

Saturday's All Right

It was a very busy weekend! Saturday morning I finally got my haircut. I've needed one forever, but first I was tight on cash, then it was the holidays, then I got sick, etc. etc. etc. I'm not sure if I like the cut or not. It's not the look I was going for and my hair tends to do what it wants to do so it always looks the same.

Afterwards I went over to my friend Florence's house for lunch and then headed over to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts for the Beauford Delaney exhibit.

It was a really good show. It was amazing to see how much his work changed when he moved from New York to Paris, despite the fact he was already in his 50s.

After the museum, we headed back to Florence's house for a little beading. We were going to take the "Zig Zag Bracelet" class at The Bead Monkey, but it's all crystals, so it's a really expensive project. They had a sale on all crystals, though, so I bought the supplies and decided to figure it out on my own. It was a little difficult re-threading two strands after the crimp without getting all the beads out of position, but I think it turned out pretty well:

I had a hankering for sushi, so I invited my brother out for dinner, so he, Jessica and I went to Fuji Ya. We had a great time and the sushi was really delicious.


Sunday was book club and I hadn't quite finished "The Translator" yet, so I had to finish that up. I really liked it. It's a really well written book. He wrote a very believable female protagonist and developed characters well with a lot of economy. Not everything was explained and drawn out explicitly, which I liked. We had a really good discussion at book club. Everyone was there, which was nice and it was an interesting conversation.

I made Swedish Apple Crepes, so I also spent the morning making crepes. They didn't turn out as well as I'd have liked, but they were pretty cold by the time I had one, so hopefully they were better when they were warm. I always make way too much food for book club. I also made a strawberry cake from a mix I got at Williams-Sonoma in some heart shaped springform pans. I think I'll give those to Bill and Red, though.

After book club, I went home and watched "Notorious" for my class on Tuesday night. I started a new book last night too:

I'm a big fan of this series and I received this book for Christmas last year, so I'm happy to finally have time to read it. I also had some time to knit again, so I worked on Ruffles:

I love knitting this! It's so cute and I love this yarn. It's fun to knit too - it's easy to remember and it's just stockinette stitch, but you're doing short rows, so it keeps it interesting. I definitely want to knit one of these for myself.

Sports, Sports, Sports

Big weekend in sports in the Twin Cities. Flip got fired. I'm very disappointed with how the Wolves have played this year, but I certainly wouldn't hold Flip responsible for most of it. I guess since they can't find anyone to trade for Cassell or Sprewell, there wasn't much else to change up. Judging from their performance yesterday, it's not solving anything, though.

More positively, it looks like the McCombs will finally be selling the Vikings. Not a big McCombs fan. I'm disgusted by his decision to barely spend the salary minimum. Obviously hate the threats to move the team. I recognize the Vikings do need a new stadium, but I don't think it will ever happen for Red McCombs, so I'm happy to see a new ownership. My first choice would be Glenn Taylor because I like how he's handled the Timberwolves (well, except for firing Flip and the whole "wink, wink, ink, ink" deal) and I definitely think he's well-connected in the legislature and could get a stadium deal done. I love the idea of having an NFL team owned primarily by an African-American, but I don't know much about Reggie Fowler. Sounds like he wouldn't be an absentee owner like McCombs, though. If the team is sold, it would probably tip my hand toward renewing the tickets.


Here are a few more of my Elann purchases. First up, the Peruvian Highland Wool that has been so popular. I would like to make the Ribby Cardi that everyone else is making, but I didn't like any of the complementary colors offered right now. I may look for a green in a different line of yarn or just make it all in purple.

I also got this Berroco Cotton Twist. Love Berroco yarns and cotton and couldn't resist this green:

As you can see, Finbar was very interested in seeing what I was doing, as usual. I didn't even realize he was there until I pulled up the picture on my computer. Such a cute little nose!

I also got my kit for the Beaded Knitting Group's knitalong:

Looks fun, huh?

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Pink Poncho

This has been a crazy week. Things went from bad to worse on one of my cases, so I've been scrambling to try to get things taken care of. I did manage to take a little time off on Thursday night to go to a Gopher Women's Basketball game. Unfortunately, they lost pretty badly, but I still had fun.

I also was able to finish the front of the pink poncho for Alexis:

Unfortunately, I think it might be too small. When I first started working on it, I thought it was going to be too big. When I finished, it looks pretty small. Then yesterday I was shopping with Bill at Target and we saw some cute girls' ponchos. It looked like mine was a little bigger than those, so I felt better. Bill decided to buy one of the ponchos for his girlfriend's daughter and I accidentally took it home with my stuff (I swear, it was an accident). So, I had the opportunity to lay it down under my poncho and it's almost exactly the same size and it's a size small. I really think Alexis would need a medium. I'm going to see how much bigger the medium is and see if I can figure something out. Otherwise, Katie may have TWO pink ponchos. :-)

I also received my latest order from Elann. Their prices are so awesome, it's hard to pass up something that I like. I was able to pick up yarn for a couple different sweaters for about $35 each. Since I was so gluttonous, I'm going to show the pictures over a few days instead of all at one time. Today is the sock yarns that I got:

I was reading the new Vogue Knitting yesterday and they showed this cute little dog calendar at the Craft Yarn Council. There's a pug named Finbar in there! Check it out.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Awww, aren't they cute?

I finished up the Ugg booties:

I think they're the cutest booties ever :-) I cast on for the hat, but didn't get far, so no pictures. I started a Compleat Scholar class from the UM yesterday, so I didn't have that much time to knit. The class is on the films of Alfred Hitchcock and I enjoyed the first session a lot.

We're feeling very lazy around here today:

That's Finbar rolling around on the floor, scratching his nose against the carpet. And this one is Fiona in her favorite hiding place - the corner of the bathroom right under the bathtub:

As for me, I'd like to join them in lounging, but I've got two hearings today, so I gotta get going.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Thanks again Secret Pal!!

My secret pal totally rocks! On Wednesday I had a couple of meetings and a conference call. None of my cases are going well right now, so it was really depressing and I was feeling sort of helpless. Afterwards, Jackie and I went to Spice for lunch and sort of processed everything and I felt somewhat better. It helped that my lunch was incredibly good - Basil Noodle. If you're in the Burnsville/Savage/Prior Lake area, I highly recommend this. Even better, I got back to my office and found two boxes on my desk. One was the Berroco Pronto I got on eBay to finish my sister Laura's sweater. The other was from my Secret Pal. After the clients who were waiting for me were taken care of, I ripped into it. First I saw this:

Some nice Valentine's Flowers!! Yeah. She also sent a nice Valentine's Card and some candy:

The Asian themed chocolates were obviously very timely considering my Thai lunch!

SP also indulged my love of purple with these items:

There's a nice blank book. The bracelets are great and that one with the flower is really unusual - I love it! The candle is my favorite - lilac. As you can see, the top of the candle is a flower, so I sort of don't want to burn it. It smells heavenly, so I've just been enjoying the scent, so far.

I also got this:

I LOVE it!! It's so soft and beautiful! I literally held and petted it while I caught up on my blog reading. It was so comforting! Thank you so, so much Secret Pal!!


I was watching American Idol this week and LL Cool J was a guest judge. He's very aptly named. Ladies LOVE Cool James. At least this lady does. He's of course amazingly gorgeous. Unbelievably great body. Extremely talented. And the kindest person ever. Everytime someone was crushed by Simon, LL would go up and give them a hug and comfort them. That would be better than getting on the show!

I also watched this show on Discovery Channel about Pompeii. The first half was a recreation of the volcano eruption. The second half was a documentary about Mt. Vesuvius today. They interviewed three different scientists about it and they were all incredibly beautiful women. There was a volcanologist that easily could be a model. She looked like Mariska Hargitay's sister. Reminded me of when I was in Italy - every single person I saw there was very beautiful. So chic and gorgeous.

Renee's Reviews

Friday night I saw this movie:

Wow. Great movie! Clint Eastwood is probably my favorite director and this is another brilliant movie from his repetoire. The acting of everyone was so good and subtle. The relationship between Eastwood's character and Freeman's character was just so enjoyable to watch. There's a lot of humor, especially with one of the boxers in the gym. But, it also packs an emotional punch. Go see it!


Saturday night I went over to my friend Beth's house and we did a little scrapbooking:

I bought the mini-scrapbook making tools from the Valentine's Day class, so I decided to make a mini-book of a trip to the zoo for Bill:

These small books are a challenge because they're so small that you don't have a ton of space to work with for embellishments and journaling. Here's my favorite page, probably more because of the picture and not my scrapbooking skills:

Super Bowl

We went to Porter's to watch the game - a tradition. We love going there because of the great mix of people. Plus, they don't try to get cute with music and games, etc. Just a couple of drawings and a numbers board. The only thing I don't like about it is it's incredibly smoky and my eyes always hurt by the second half.

I was hoping the Eagles would win, but at least it was a close game. I didn't think there were that many great commercials this year. I did appreciate the marked decrease in commercials featuring bodily functions and scantily clad women, though. I liked the Career Builder commercials, perhaps because I identify with the thought of working with a bunch of chimps. I didn't care for the Fed Ex Burt Reynolds one. The Degree "Mama's Boys" one was pretty bad. My favorite was the Lay's MC Hammer one. Hammer is a good sport! I also liked the Ameriquest "Don't Be Quick to Judge" commercials, especially the cat one. I enjoyed the halftime show, but it was pretty pedestrian.

We recieved our Vikings season ticket renewal in the mail this week, so we've gotta decide whether to renew or not. As usual, the prices went up again. We don't have great seats, but it's still really expensive. The last few years have not been all that much fun and by the end of the season this year, I literally wished I could just stay home and watch the game on tv and get some laundry done. It's so much fun when the team plays well, though. Plus, I hate to give up our seats and start all over again WAY up in the nosebleeds.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005


How awesome is my Secret Pal? Right out of the box, first day of the Secret Pal program, and I get a gift certificate from Amazon. I love it! I'm so excited to figure out what to order. I love books and you know I love shopping. I'm trying to decide whether to get a knitting book or a novel. I've got to mull it over.

It's absolutely beautiful in Minnesota this week. We had a little bit of snow on Monday morning - just enough to shovel - but then the sun came out and it was nice and warm. Red and I had a fun snowball fight in the afternoon. While I was in Woodbury, I decided to stop by Bead Gallery and see if they had any cool green or orange beads for Alissa's cuff. I got a couple, but they didn't have all that much that was just right. I did like these big glass hearts, so I decided to buy two and make a pair of earrings:

See how awful those loops on the headpin are? I was talking to the clerk at Bead Gallery about my difficulty with making loops and she made me feel like a complete moron, so I decided to search the internet for pictures and figure out what I was doing wrong. After quite a while, I finally found some that I think helped and I think I'll be able to make better loops now. I decided to practice by making some more stitch markers. I bought a bunch of knitting charms, so I made markers with them. The eye pins are very fine wire, though, so I decided to practice wrapping instead of just making a loop.

I read on someone's blog that these actually don't work very well because they catch on your knitting. I'm going to test drive them and see if I have a problem. If I do, then maybe I'll take them apart and make something else.

Yesterday I got my order from Threadbear:

I had one skein of this from my sister's sweater and she said she'd like a scarf with it. I know a lot of people don't like novelty yarns, but if you do, check this one out. It's so darn soft! I was very happy with my dealings with Threadbear and would definitely order from them again.

Greg had a meeting last night, so I picked up Michael from his after school program. Greg has this meeting every first Tuesday, so I've done this a half dozen times or so. We always have fun with a little nephew-auntie time. We always get some dinner and then last night we went to the dollar store. He had some money from my grandpa burning a hole in his pocket. I also had a goldfish tank which I was going to move my goldfish into, but I never quite got around to it and all but one of my fish died. So, I gave the tank to Michael and then we went to the pet store and he picked out some fish and some tank decoration. It was so fun to see how excited he was about his new fish.

When I got home I finally did a little knitting. It's been a while since I've picked up the needles, other than the Elann samples I knit up. I did a little more work on Alexis' poncho:

I think it's looking really good. I'm trying to decide what to do about the bottom edge. As you can see, it's curling up, but I kind of like it as an edging. She wants fringe on the bottom, so I may just apply the fringe and let that pull down the edge. I may have the most sensual lineup of yarn I've ever had going right now. This yarn is unbelievably soft and pettable. The Suede is really nice and feels like Suede. And then of course, the La Luz silk is like butter. I like my knitting right now!

Time to go. Finbar wants to know when I'm going to let him out again: