January 29, 2010

Just a bit gross.

See this kitty above? Well last night he started to earn his keep and took a step into man-cat-hood. I was peacefully sleeping when I heard a horrible clanking. It was the baseboard heating cover falling off. I look and there's Zeus looking for something and running out of my room. I got up and fixed it so he wouldn't wake me up again. Before I could turn off the light and fall back asleep he runs in with a little gray victim. He was batting around the mouse as it jumped.

I felt bad but I believe in the cycle of life. I know the little guy could smell my cat and really got himself into trouble. As they both left the room I closed the door. There is another escape route behind the toilet so I didn't feel like I set the mouse up for doom. No way was I having a dead gift show up on the end of my bed.

In the morning I slowly crept out of my bedroom and saw nothing. I thought I was free and clear. Boy, was I wrong. Right next to his water bowl was the poor mouse. That is usually the first place I go to in the morning so I'm pretty sure the placing was deliberate. I carefully got him tied up in a bag. At least I could handle it because I had a snake but it's disturbing when you've seen it running around and alive. I had to uncermoniously throw him out. The ground is too frozen for a proper burial. I'm sure the others are elsewhere talking amongst themselves,

"Guys, Frank went out last night and never came back. I think he may have been dumb enough to check out the third floor." They look ominously to each other, "The beast."

In other news, I knit my first sweater. It may be baby-sized but it's still a sweater. I was proud. I used the pattern 'Daisy' from knitty. I'm making two more for my coworker's grandson along with hats to match. After that I work on my store items. I can't wait to get going with that.

The other day I also found a book to be my future art journal. It's a poetry book which may come in handy as mixed media. I feld bad since it's a good author whose name escapes me right now, but there were other copies so I'm not destroying the one and only. I have my glue, gesso, and even some new water color pencils to get going on it. I'm so excited. =)

January 26, 2010

Rollin out

Well I did it! One goal down for the year. I’m now a member of Providence Roller Derby. Tonight I have my first practice as a newbie to the league. It’s been quite the process.

Roller skating/blading is something I have been doing ever since I was little so I thought it would be fun to do something that incorporated it.

The whole process started in October. I went to the roller skating rink by myself and not really knowing what to expect. I bought some old skates off of someone for $20 that were too big. Of course, I didn’t know how real skates were supposed to be yet. I didn’t even know the rules yet, or seen a bout. I just knew I wanted to try this.

I was a bit shaky on quad skates, but I knew my muscles would remember how it all worked soon enough. I couldn’t even cross over yet without wobbling. The coaching staff and recruiting staff were so nice and patient with everyone. We skated around learning basics and then got to talk to them about the league. I was hooked the first time I was on that rink in spite of all the foot cramps I got from skating.

I immediately started to volunteer. It was fun to get to know the girls. I also got to see my first bout. The travel teams were going up against CT and MA. The Killah Bees tried hard but they lost. The Riveters did awesome and won the bout! I was waitressing for the VIPs but when everyone was all set I couldn’t keep my eyes off the bout. It’s so fast paced and high energy. I finally got to figure out how it all worked. I winced when the girls got slammed but I didn’t let it scare me away. I left thinking, I can do this. I bought the gear I needed and dove into the sport.

For months we continued with the recruit clinics, fine tuning our basic skills. I went to practices and scrimmages to keep learning. Eventually we had to do our laps. To qualify for the league you have basic skills and then speed/endurance. We have to do 25 laps in 5 minutes. We only did it two times before the assessment and I got 24 both times. That last lap was just dangling there and giving me the finger as I sat huffing and puffing with my throat on fire from the workout. I was pretty damn nervous at the assessment. I knew I improved considerably from all the time at the rink, but I was worried about that one last lap.

Well, I got on the line. When the whistle blew I concentrated on my form and my breathing, hoping I get my final lap. I got that lap and dragged him around another half a lap, giving him the finger this time.  

With the assessment passed we had an interview with the coaching staff. They wanted to get to know us and find out how we react to certain situations. Damage control I’m sure. Weed out the drama queens and the overly aggressive. From the girls I knew that were interviewing I knew it was going to be a tough choice. There were some really great girls trying out. The interview was more comfortable than I expected. They just asked about me and ‘what if’ situations. I then had to wait 3 more days till I found out. Just ask anyone who was around me, I was so anxious and checking my e-mail constantly. Finally Bunnicula delivered the good news. I’m a newbie and orientation is the first week of February!

Now to deck my self out. I need new wheels and some toe stops I like. Maybe even some new socks, laces and shorts, too. I can’t wait till I earn my name and I can be out on that track during a real bout. Till then, I work my ass off (and a nice ass it will be).

January 12, 2010

A knitting survey

I saw this ’survey’ in this blog. It intersted me since I wanted to think about what I have done and what I'd like to try out. You don't realize how much you've done till you look through a list. I'm happy with myself.

This is a knitting survey……

Mark with bold the things you have knit, with italics the ones you plan to do sometime, and leave the rest.



Garter stitch

Knitting with metal wire


Stockinette stitch

Socks: top-down

Socks: toe-up

Knitting with camel yarn

Mittens: Cuff-up
Mittens: Tip-down


Knitting with silk

Moebius band knitting

Participating in a KAL


Drop stitch patterns

Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn

Slip stitch patterns

Knitting with banana fiber yarn

Domino knitting (=modular knitting)

Twisted stitch patterns

Knitting with bamboo yarn

Two end knitting

Charity knitting

Knitting with soy yarn

Toy/doll clothing

Knitting with circular needles

Baby items

Knitting with your own hand-spun yarn


Graffiti knitting

Continental knitting

Designing knitted garments

Cable stitch patterns (incl. Aran)

Lace patterns

Publishing a knitting
Participate in an exchange


Teaching a child to knit

American/English knitting (as opposed to continental)

Knitting to make money


Knitting with alpaca

Fair Isle knitting

Norwegian knitting

Dying with plant colors

Knitting items for a wedding

Household items (dishcloths, washcloths, tea cosies…)

Knitting socks (or other small tubular items) on one or two circulars

Knitting with someone else’s hand-spun yarn

Knitting with dpns

Holiday related knitting

Teaching a male how to knit


Knitting for a living

Knitting with cotton

Knitting smocking

Dying yarn


Knitting art

Knitting two socks on two circulars simultaneously

Knitting with wool

Textured knitting

Kitchener stitch

Knitted flowers


Knitting with beads


Long Tail CO

Knitting and purling backwards

Machine knitting

Knitting with self patterning/self striping/variegated yarn

Stuffed toys

Baby items

Knitting with cashmere


Knitting with synthetic yarn
Writing a pattern



Knitting with linen

Knitting for preemies

Tubular CO

Free-form knitting

Short rows

Cuffs/fingerless mits/arm-warmers


Knitting a pattern from an on-line knitting magazine


Knitting on a loom

Thrummed knitting

Knitting a gift

Knitting for pets


Knitting with dog/cat hair

Hair accessories

Knitting in public

Where does the time go?

I can't believe we are here in the new year now. I was just thinking about resolutions. I never really do set any, or at least remember any that I set. I remember when I was little I would think of really cool ones like "to have the best handwriting." Yeah, I was a geek then, too. My handwriting is still pretty good. Just don't look at my signature. It looks nothing like my name.

As I sit here I'm actually thinking of some good ones that I do like. I think they are good New Years goals.

  • Get my Artfire shop going

  • Pay down my debt

  • Be more adventurous and enjoy life

  • Stear clear of drama

  • Stress out less about the small things

  • Make exercise more part of every day (walk or bike more)

  • Be more creative

I think that's a good list of goals. Come next year I'll have to break out this list and see how I did. Wish me luck with it.

Hrmm, I had more to say but oh well. This will do =)

January 4, 2010

Herbal Graduation

I had a great time getting together all my recipes for my graduation. It was a bit stressful but so worth it. I love creating things. Having a finished project is so gratifying. I love putting on that finished scarf, hanging that piece of artwork, watching a friend smile when then receive the gift, or using that herbal ointment. It's fun. Well I got the joy of breathing again once it all was said and done. I don't have pictures of all the progress but here we go. (I made the pictures kind of small since there are quite a few but feel free to see larger ones at my flickr page.)

Here I have the oil base brewing with some muscle soothing herbs. It's the base for my Anti-Crafter's Crick ointment. I let the herbs macerate for a while. Kind of a weird smell but it calmed down when cooled.

Then I had to melt in beeswax to give it the ointment consistency.

And finally they were put in jars.

I made a tea to fight off the symptoms of Aunt Flo's visit. It's called "Aunt Flo's Ticket home." She is really rude, you know.

I made capsules to help your immune system fight harder.

A really messy but fun part was making bathbombs. These were part of my aphrodisiac kit that included a candle and two small wine glasses. :) I may be biased but I really loved the essential oils I used.

I was weary of the turnout but they were hard as rocks and came out right.

There was also "Keep your car clean biscuits" for that carsick puppy in your life.

And some shampoo to prevent and fight dandruff.

In the end I had a full basket of 10 products and I really like how they came out. I'm proud to have completeed the 10 month apprenticeship. Now I know how to create more.