Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Just send me to Hufflepuff where I belong.

My niece loves the Harry Potter books, which my sister reads aloud to her, and she loves to play out the stories and create her own.  We played this quite a bit last summer.  She is always her favorite character, Luna Lovegood.  (I chose Mrs. Weasley.)

She told me that when she is eleven (she will be seven later this year), she just knows she'll be sorted into ____, because she is smart.  (She is.)  

That is what I remembered.  I remembered playing lots of HP, that Luna is her favorite character, and that particular sentence, excepting the name of the house.  I filled in the blank with Gryffindor, and proceeded to knit a bag for her birthday gift, imagining the fun it would add to her games.

I was about 3/4 done, and asked my husband for ideas of things to put in the bag, things related to Luna or Gryffindor.

"Luna was in Ravenclaw," was his response.

Oops!  LOL  All I could do was laugh at myself.  I finished the bag anyway, though I left off some of the details.  I'll be starting a Ravenclaw bag soon. 

The pattern for this was free, available on Ravelry, named HP House Fair Isle Bag.  I knit it in Hobby Lobby's I Love This Cotton.  After I knit the Ravenclaw bag, I'll be lining both of them.  Having knit this one, I've decided to go down a needle size for the next, to get a denser fabric.  I'll also be using a chevron chart a friend designed, rather than the checkerboard.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

365 Giraffe

365 Gorilla

365 Hippo, in and out

Free day at the zoo!
The hippo did underwater ballerina twirls before getting out to sunbath.
I watched in delight, but no photos.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

365 Do you knit Christmas gifts?

Not me, at least not this year.
This is for a December birthday.

365 Both Kinds

I have both kinds of dogs:  floppy eared and pointed eared.
Dog ears are so expressive!  

Jeb's ears are like velvet; we love to pet his soft ears.  He loves it, too.
The bandana is a first; he was given it at the vet's yesterday.  
All the techs and the vet told me what a sweet natured boy he is, very cooperative.

Trixie's ears work like radar, pivoting to better track what is going on.
I love the way she hold her nylabone in her paws.  
She only ever chews one end, leaving the other intact for a better handle.

Basement Progress

I love the wall color!  Depending on your monitor, it may or may not look a lovely blue grey.  In person, it is.  As you can see, we have also removed the carpet.  I am borrowing spare garbage bins* from my neighbors, and most of it should be gone (out of my garage) with this week's trash.  After that, we will tear up the padding, and dispose of it the same way.  There is only so much room to store trash, so no point in taking it up too soon.

* Some of my neighbors and friends have two garbage bins.  We only have one, and have never needed a second.  So I am borrowing bins this week.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

thoughts on: Design Sponge at Home

Design*Sponge at HomeDesign*Sponge at Home by Grace Bonney

I don't know why I keep checking out books that come out of blogs I follow.  I always expect them to be more than print copies of things seen or read on the blogs.  This one, like the others I've read, is not. 

There are pretty pictures of many homes, like the "sneak peeks" on the Design*Sponge site.  They seem less personal in print, however, missing the little comments from the homeowners about what they like best about their homes.

Crafts and floral arrangements fill the rest of the book.  Neither goes beyond what you find online, but they are nicely organized and presented.

I like the Design Sponge site.  I hesitated to write about not liking the book, but that seems dishonest somehow.  If you are looking for home decor inspiration, I recommend visiting the site. 

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

365 Elephants and Tigers

Our local zoo has a few free days in the off months - 
two each in October, November, January, and February.  I try to go to as many as I can. 
Today, my daughter and I went after she got out of school.

Elephants are one of my favorite animals.
A new Asian Tropics exhibit is under construction,
and I think the elephants will like their bigger and better place there.
To get them ready for their move, transport boxes have been placed in their current enclosure.

Last year's cubs look grown, but are still full of mischief.
This young tiger was attempting to escape by means of the drain pipe.  
I am happy to say he(?) was not successful, turning back when he realized he could not get his back legs on it without losing balance and falling into the dry moat.

Across the yard, this one happily perched on top of the fence meant to keep the tigers from destroying this particular tree.
Looks pretty proud up there, doesn't he/she?
It's a six foot fence, and the tiger leapt up there as effortlessly as a  big dog on a sofa.

The next free day is only a week away!

thoughts on: The Art Detective: Fakes, Frauds, and Finds and the Search for Lost Treasures

The Art Detective: Fakes, Frauds, and Finds and the Search for Lost TreasuresThe Art Detective: Fakes, Frauds, and Finds and the Search for Lost Treasures by Philip Mould

Mould introduces us to the world of art historians, restorations, and the risky business of buying and selling art through the stories of six paintings.  Through them, we are given a taste of the thrill of the discovering forgotten works, the historical research to authenticate them, and the process involved in restoring them.  I've always been interested in art restoration, and I enjoyed listening to Mould's adventures and meeting the characters he encountered - including a forger, a hoarder, and self taught experts in their fields.

I listened to this on tape while painting my basement.  I'd like to find a copy to look at the illustrations.  I read in another review that he includes before and after of the restorations and side by sides showing the Rockwell forgery.

Do you ever win random contests?


I don't enter every giveaway I come across.  Not even most.  I limit myself to things I really do want, or think I will use.  Of course, I rarely win.

Recently, however, I won this skein of handpainted yarn from What's Up, Cupcake.   I envisioned knitting it into a scarf or cowl or neckwarmer of some sort.  Now I am considering socks or a baby sweater.

Today I entered to win this Danish monkey.  I've admired these monkeys for some time, and would love to own one.  The photo is a link if you want to see him in other poses.  He is really quite clever.  I am not certain I am eligible to win; I didn't see anything about international shipping.  It was worth trying though.