Thursday, December 31, 2009

Catching up on Christmas

Wow, I totally disappeared over the holidays, didn't I?
I assure you I had a lot of fun. I need to do a big long picture post. As it stands, I don't feel like it right now.

Christmas Eve I got some yarn in the mail. I'm going to make this sweater!!
So excited. I've never made a real sweater yet.
So guess what I did Christmas day? I crocheted. All. Day. Long.
Christmas night I finished the back of the sweater. It looked kind of small.
I measured it. It came way short of the size it was supposed to be.

Pretty much ruined my night. Totally ruined the next day. I couldn't stop thinking about how I had spent all of Christmas day working on something that's going to have to be undone. I haven't unraveled it yet, but I've let go of the pain. ;-) I can't decide if I should just be more conscientious about my tension, or up my hook size - cuz my gauge swatch was spot on.

The Looneys came over on Christmas Eve and we shared finger foods and exchanged gifts. That was awesomely fun. I say, this year was the best gift-giving year for me. Practically everything came from Etsy, and everyone was thrilled with their stuff. Then Katey, Laura, Alicia and I took silly pictures of ourselves. For as long as we've been friends, Katey and I have very few pictures of us together, so... yay! we have one now. Even though I'm smiling weird. lol

Christmas Day we leisurely opened gifts in the morning, then headed over to Mema's house in the afternoon for Christmas Dinner. So yummy. I got my cooking genes from Mema and Mama. They're the best.

So, it was an uneventful, relaxing, and fun holiday. Just how it ought to be. Wally (that's Laura, for the uninformed) and I took a picture in front of Mema's tree. (which is always lovely - She and Alicia have been the official Mema's Tree Decorators for the past couple of years)

As for today I've made 2.5 hats, put away some of the Christmas decorations, and made peanut butter rice krispie treats for the New Year's Eve party at the Looneys' house tonight. We're going to go over this evening and eat more junk food and play games and be crazy again. Yay!

So, Happy New Year to all my friends out there, and perhaps I'll actually get around to doing a New Year's post too... Or maybe that should wait til I post Christmas pictures? Or not. I don't know. We'll see. :)

Enjoy the rest of your holiday!!


Friday, December 18, 2009

More Christmas Fun

Hello people!
It's a week til Christmas!! I'm so excited. I may have said that already. :D

Last week was the Sunday school class Christmas party. Anna Leigh and I teamed up to decorate a table. We got there and the other two teams already had their tables done, and quite splendidly at that. It scared me. lol But Anna brought some stuff from her family's Christmas village, and I brought some lights to illuminate it, and it turned out really pretty. So, yay!

We did a white elephant gift exchange, for which I brought a radio-football-pillow. Emily opened it, but I got it back from her when my turn came. Which means she was forced to open my package... and we won't even go there. Broken tiles, squished cans, duct tape, multiple knives... I'm not even kidding. Thank you Matt. lol But it was tons of fun. For the rest of us. ;-) My Sunday school class is a bunch of awesome people. Oh! I almost forgot to mention that Emily ended up getting the football back from me at the end of the game.

For the record, catchphrase is underrated. Best game ever. Actually, I guess it depends a lot on the people you're with.
"If you're not short, you're ....?"
"You know - if you're not sure, you're undecided!"
The last few gifts I ordered are coming in the mail this week!! AH! The anticipation of giving all these people all this stuff is getting to me. :D

I hope you liked the pictures... I haven't had a picture post in a while. Now, I think I'm going to go to bed. I wish you all a happy weekend, and a merry Christmas. Again.


P.S. Check out how long my hair is getting!!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

We Have A Winner!

So, I got home too late Saturday night to do anything but go to bed.
Then I was busy all day Sunday.
Then on Monday I just didn't feel like randomly numbering a page 1-26 and writing all your names.

But I have done so this morning, as you may now see:

See there? Completely random.
Then I went to the Random Number Generator and asked for a number between 1 and 26.
Are you ready for this?Dun dun DUUUUN! Numbah TEN, you are the WINNER!
What do you know? Number 10 is my friend Alyssa L. from church! GO ALYSSA!

Why is giving stuff away so fun? If I could afford it, I think I would do it more often. lol
Maybe I'll do a New Year's giveaway too.

So, congratulations Alyssa! And thank you SO much to everybody who participated. It still makes me kind of sad that only one person can win. :( I like all of you! Which means you'd better come back and try again when I do my next giveaway. :)

Happy Monday!


Saturday, December 12, 2009

Time for some Christmas Fun!

Today's gonna be a good day.

In a couple hours I'm leaving to see a movie with my friends. The Blind Side, in case you were interested. And then the Michael's in Conyers had better have that yellow yarn I need, or I'm going to be in trouble. (on the bright side, YAY for Christmas sales!)

This evening is my Sunday school class Christmas Party. YAY! The only problem is that I don't have a white elephant gift... yet... heh...

Anyways, it's going to be a long and super fun day, I think.

Don't forget - it's the last day of my giveaway! Participation has been WAY lower than it was earlier this year, but that's ok, because it gives each of you a better chance. ;-) SO! Pick your fave and leave a comment!

I'll just go ahead and apologize for not having my new stuff added to the shop yet. I'm currently working on some brown gloves, and I've already finished a couple of unique stripey beanies and pretty wool scarves. I just haven't been able to photograph them yet. meh! And now I really don't have time to get them up for Christmas.

Oh well! Enter the giveaway here, and I'll declare a winner tonight, if I can stay awake. =)
Merry Saturday!


Monday, December 7, 2009

Saturday Afternoon

Saturday afternoon, my perfectionist self completely redid all the lights and ornaments on our christmas tree. I feel kind of guilty about it - the kids did it all themselves last week, but it was bugging me, and now it's not. Afterwords, I decided to spend some time out in the sunshine.

Belle the Dachshund went out with me, and we played with sticks and all that sort of thing for a while. She settled down to gnaw on a nice little branch, and I got a crazy notion to do something I hadn't done in years.

Every time a car went past I couldn't help but wonder if they suspected what I was about to do.
I don't really know how long I was out there, but progress went pretty fast.
I raked up a big pile of leaves from our front yard.
Then I stood in front of it and fell backwards.

I swished the leaves around with my arms, and then settled in, leaves from either side spilling over on top of me. It was wonderful. The spicy smell of crisp autumn leaves surrounded me as I looked up at the sky through the bare branches of the oaks.

Some of my clearest memories from our old home in Jonesboro are of playing outside in the Fall. We had 6 or 7 pecan trees in the front yard, and Laura and I spent hours stomping on pecans for a "snack", or making nests and forts in the leaves. I remember being completely immersed in leaves, burrowing underneath what seemed like monstrous piles of them at the time.

In Mansfield, we didn't really have any leaves. Just pine needles. One year, back in the woods behind the dog pen, we raked up a small leaf pile - half of it was pine needles. It was a disappointment, and we didn't try again.

So... Saturday afternoon with nothing to do and a vast expanse of crunchy, spicy leaves before me,
really - what else was I to do?

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Giveaways are Fun - Christmas Edition!

In the spirit of Christmas (and self-promotion) I am henceforth issuing the decree for a second CaitiJo Giveaway!!

**crowd yells huzzah!**

I thought about picking one item (such as the elfin slippers -wouldn't those be a great Christmasy thing to pick?) to give away, but then I remembered that I had already made this poster that says "pick your own prize" ... I didn't want to make a new poster, and I guess people like having a choice... So.... there we have it!

Lots of other people usually give you about 5 ways you can get an entry, but I like to be simplistic. Here's how it's gonna go down:

1) Just leave a comment saying what you would pick should you win.
2) Saturday evening, December 12, I will pick a winner by using a random number generator.
3) Winner will be notified, and congratulated publicly on my blog.

Should you win and find yourself thinking "darn! I should've said elfin slippers instead of black gloves," or, "no fair! that crazy awesome beanie wasn't listed when I posted my entry!" no worries. Changing your mind is allowed. ;-)

So. Take a gander, pick your fave, and enter to win a Christmas gift for yourself!
(Or for a friend, if you're feeling generous.)
Spread the word if you feel so inclined.

Happy Entering!!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Improv Chicken Pastina is Good

That was a very random title.
However, it is the subject of this post, so maybe it's not too random.

I've never cooked pastina before. 4 o'clock came and I didn't know what to do for dinner. Frozen roast wouldn't cook fast enough. Frozen chicken would! So I pan-seared some frozen chicken with a couple cloves of garlic. (the great thing about cooking chicken that way is that it makes it so flavorful. chicken likes to be bland sometimes.)

While it was cooking, I decided to use that pastina that's been sitting in the pantry looking so cute. I went down to the basement and came back up two or three times in an effort to think of something to go with the chicken. Soup was not an option. Well, it was, actually... but I didn't want soup. But I did want pastina. And chicken.

So. I chopped up some carrots, celery, bell pepper, and onion suuuuuuper finely and sauteed them. Then I cubed the chicken and mixed everything together - chicken, pastina, and veggies. It was good, but it needed a little more flavor. So I made a little bit of sauce - chicken mushroom sauce with a splash of soy sauce - and poured it in. Perfect.

Then I served it with steamed cabbage and proceeded to be in awe of my improvisational cooking skillz. Thank you, mother. :)

Now I'm going to go wrap presents and listen to my new Louis Armstrong Christmas CD.
If only I had some cocoa!

What sort of Christmas music do you enjoy?


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Christmas is coming!

With a cabinet full of secrets and a whole stack of Christmas CDs that have been waiting all year to be recommissioned, Christmas time is definitely here again. Not to mention the gray rainy weather.

I need to go to the post office today. Maybe I'll go ahead and go to Michael's to pick up some yarn and get some gift wrap while I'm at it! Now that I'm thinking about it, I think I will. I have like 5 Michael's coupons, and some of them are going to go to waste because I only have 3 days to use them.

I just printed out these amazingly cute gift tags from ConnieK - whom I don't actually know, but I "follow" her blog. Sadly, they all turned out pink. :| I would say that means the printer is out of order. So, I'll need to borrow somebody's printer, because I plan on using them. ;-)

Lately I've been thinking of doing another giveaway. What do you think? If I do, should I pick an item to give away, or should I do it like last time and let the winner pick?

My paragraphs mostly begin with I, and it annoys me. However, I have a really hard time finding different ways to begin them. :P

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some things to do. Which reminds me, somehow, that I also have new items to list in my Etsy shop. It doesn't look like the nasty weather is going to let me get any good photos, though. Perhaps later this week.

Have a super great Wednesday! I will. Church tonight! Yeah!
So. Bye!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Apparently, blogging has become a once-a-week thing for me. Bummer!
So here's the deal on the latest happenings.

I will not, in fact, be participating in the Christmas Marketplace at the PCA. After stressing out about it, I realized that there is way too much stuff going on this week for it to work out anyways. Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday different members of the family have to be at church in the evenings. Plus, Mama's working. Soo... that would have made participating virtually impossible anyways. So I dropped out. Sad, but kind of a relief.

Etsy's been fun... I made a couple of sales over the weekend (which I need to make/ship today), and am wrapping up the last of my Christmas trades. Trading has been awesome. And I just gotta say, this shop is still my favorite. Not that I'm dissing anyone else... just throwin' that out there. :P
And I'm working out a trade with these people, too. Exciting!

Now I'm eating some oatmeal. Courtesy of myself. It's good.

In other random news, I'm pretty much going crazy posting links from Stuff Christians Like all over Facebook. New favorite blog! Satire = awesome. Christian Satire = super awesome and hilarious. Especially when it's one of those "been there, done that, now let's look back and laugh at it" things. You know, stuff like saying "I was just flipping channels" when you watch something you shouldn't, and having to hold hands during a prayer. Then there's the humorous observations on random stuff like email forwards, true love waits, and judging people that use the table of contents in their Bible. It's just good stuff. And I'm going to preorder the book.

This post has now taken way longer than it was supposed to because I just spent forever at that site. Again.

I'd better go for a walk or something before I sit down and crochet the day away.
Wishing you all a super happy week. :)


Monday, November 23, 2009

the holidays are here!

Sooooo. I'm sittin here in a green sweater, drinking hot cocoa with a splash of coffee out of a mug that says "given enough coffee, I could rule the world."

That's pleasant. :)

It's almost time for a hair update.

I'm doing lots of trades on Etsy for christmas presents. It's awesome fun. Except for I have like 5 trades going at once now and it's getting a litle confusing. I'm so excited about all the cool stuff I'm getting for people!

Yesterday I realized it had been almost a week since my last post. Today it has been a week! AH! Sorry. :(

So, there are some pretty cool things coming up in just the next 3 weeks. Ah, the busy rush of the holiday season! Here I shall list some of the events I'm looking forward to:

  • wednesday my Katie will be home from college, and Caiti, Katie, and Katey shall all go out for coffee in the morning. <3

  • thursday is Thanksgiving. HELLO! THANKSGIVING. It rocks. **hums Josh Groban's Thankful**

  • I just found out my awesome S.S. class is going ice skating soon. I've been waiting for this!

  • December 2, 3, and 4th will be a first for me. The drama teacher of a local high school contacted me and asked it I wanted to participate in the Christmas Marketplace at the Henry County Performing Arts Center! Everyone who participates donates something for a silent auction and sets up a table to sell their goods before and after the Christmas performance her class is doing. How cool is that?! Come see me. ;-)
  • December 12th is the College and Career Christmas party. I'm in charge of decorating a table for that. It's going to be SO FUN!!

So, there's more but we'll stick with that. I just wanted to do a quick update.

By the way, nobody'd better call me out on saying "holidays." I hate it when people make a fuss about the word "holidays", fussing about Christ being taken out of Christmas. I'm opposed to avoiding the word Christmas, too, but "holidays" is totally legit. Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years togevva! So... I just wanted to rant about that for a second. :) And while I'm at it, I'll throw in that I think "season's greetings" is lame. Maybe that's just me.

Anyways, spread some holiday cheer this week. I'm off to make some stuff!


Monday, November 16, 2009

Last Feast of the Crocodiles

Five small children huddle together on the bed, the older ones holding the small ones protectively close. Growling, the menacing figure ahead of them lunges, nearly capturing the smallest in his claws. The crying shrieks of the children fill the house as the oldest kicks the beast in the chest, knocking him back to the floor. The monster regains his position for another lunge as the children press themselves harder into the corner furthest away from his relentless attacks.

With a roaring leap, he flings himself onto the bed, ruthlessly grabbing at the smallest, dragging her off the bed. They land with a thud, and he begins to roll and thrash wildly in the floor. The small one flails and cries. The children on the bed wail in grief and horror as their charge is taken down by the glowering beast. Pushing the small ones into the corner, the older two jump to the edge of the bed, not daring to get off, making a desperate but futile attempt to save the youngest. The escalating screams of horror and agony drown the low growl of the beast, who is rearing back to take out another now that the youngest lies motionless.

Those escalating screams also drowned out the voice of an unhappy mother, wishing her children could find quieter ways of occupying themselves.

You have witnessed, my friends, something very few people know about. PBS was our channel of choice years back, and there was a program called Last Feast of the Crocodiles. (I googled a few keywords and learned that just now. lol) We must have watched it three times.

Filmed during a brutal drought in central Africa, this brilliantly photographed video from NatGeo follows the predicament of animals living along the dwindling Luvuvhu River. As the water level sinks during the dry season, baboons and impalas are forced to seek water in pools filled with deadly crocodiles. The behavior of increasingly desperate and thirsty animals is shown in all its brutal detail, and some scenes, such as a violent confrontation between crocodiles and baboons, are heartrending. And while some of the video is inevitably difficult to watch, the photography is always spectacular. This video is both brutal and beautiful, and puts the viewer as close as possible (and desirable) to some of Africa's most amazing wildlife.

From this breathtakingly brutal documentary sprung what was to be our favorite game during 2002-2003 - Crocodiles and Baboons. Emmie Grace was the baby, and Nicholas the ruthless crocodile. Laura, Abby, Joey, and I were usually the dehydrating baboons. Laura and I would desperately try to get some water for the weak little babies. No matter how valiantly we faught, one of us was usually taken down along with a baby. Of course we switched it up sometimes, but this way worked best for maximum fun and drama.

The funny thing is, there wasn't really a point. We were just playing pretend. And when you're pretending, anything can happen. Sometimes the baby baboons would come back to life and crawl back to safety while the crocodile was busy with bigger prey. If the point had been for the crocodile to get all of the baboons, it would have been boring. If the point had been for no baboons to get eaten, it would have been super boring. As it stood, we could play endlessly.

There were no winners, no losers.
Just a bunch of terrified, desperate baboons and cruel, bloodthirsty crocodiles.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Happy Saturday!

Welcome to Saturday. The sun is shining, the coffee is fresh and delicious, and it's going to be a good day.

I have some pictures I want to share, so just bear with me while I be random and show you pictures that have nothing to do with each other. :D

I didn't mention that I had planned to make a matching hat for those nifty gloves, did I?
But I did. See?

A couple days ago I was sitting here at the computer, looking out the window, and the sky just went black with birds. It was crazy. A HUGE flock of birds was just... I can't think of a good verb ... I dunno. Swarming is a lame word. It was more like undulating. But that sounds weird. At any rate, this huge flock of birds was just flying about, and it was so awesome. I ran outside as fast as I could to take a picture. I was disappointed because I only got like 1/4 of them in the shot, but it still turned out pretty cool.

Yesterday was good. I crocheted some stuff, and took 4 packages to the post office. Then I came home and got ready to go paint our sunday school classroom with some friends. I decided to take the camera and found this picture on the memory card.

Oddly morbid, yes? I was rather surprised. They took pictures of themselves rolicking happily in a leaf pile, and all of a sudden there's this. My little people apparently have some sort of appreciation for darker art. Who'da thunk a playful romp in a leaf pile would result in this creepy little photo? Awesome. lol

So, then I went to church and spent a little over 5 hours helping some super great people with some painting. Cubbie Bear and his friends have been banished from the walls. We've got some classier colors going on now. (shout out to Allison on her super trimwork!)

So. It's a great day for a walk. And since I'm caught up on Etsy orders, I can crochet whatever I want today! I plan to have a lovely day, and I wish you the same!


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Vicious Cycle

I feel guilty for not blogging, therefore I keep not blogging.
Sad, isn't it?

I did finish those gloves! After many hours of torment trying to get the roses even.I could use the excuse "I've been crocheting a LOT" for not blogging. Which is true, except that I've spent plenty of time at the computer, too.

At any rate, here are some of the things I've been working on.
(can I just say I'm super proud of this photo?)

Currently annoyed because I ran out of yarn to do the scallop trim on the elf slippers.

I'm also in the middle of a making-non-slip-slippers experiment utilizing "craft goop" on the bottoms of the slippers. We'll see. I had faith, but it is waning.

I made a super cool scarf I was going to show you, but my pics disappeared!

I think this rain is ushering in the more wintery weather. Goodbye, pretty colors. I'll miss you.

So... Yep!
I'm ready for Christmas music, but I know I'll be sick of it by mid December if I start listening to it now. Building anticipation, I guess. :)

Happy Wednesday!


P.S. Sales have picked up some! wOOt!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Literary Update

It's Literary Update Time.

Did you know that being sick is a great opportunity? For me, anyways. I got to take advantage of all the down time by reading.

What did I read?

You're probably thinking I read another classic. Those are my favorites, after all.
Let us ponder, shall we?

Charles Dickens? No. (Though I do still have plenty of his work on my to-read list)
Jane Austen? No. (Been there. Own the books. ;-) )
C.S. Lewis? No. (... well, I did start piddling through A Mind Awake last week.)
George Eliot, Charlotte Bronte, Mark Twain ...? No. Excellent guesses, by the way. lol

Stephenie Meyer.


No, I did not read Twilight. I mock twilight. Without ever having read it. Hypocritical, I know.
I read The Host, upon the recommendation of my weirdest friend, Keith. (Hi, Keith!)

This is the part where I'm supposed to get wordy and creative and write a mini book review for you.


I think this cold drained my creativity. Will you mind too much if I just tell you that it was super good? Because it was. It was about a Soul named Wanderer who finds herself a misfit among her fellow Souls. The human body she inhabits still houses the willful consciousness of it's former owner, Melanie. Through circumstances beyond their control, Wanderer and Melanie become allies, working together to save the people they love.

That sounds amazingly weird and corny. But it wasn't... really!

So. I never did listen to Big Fish. I turned on the first disc and decided I really wasn't interested.
I was going to watch BBC's miniseries version of Tess, but since I'd already listened to the audiobook, I wasn't that interested. It was very prettily done, though, and I may still watch it.

In other news, I'm making a new pair of fingerless gloves and they should be ready to show you by the time I get around to posting again. :)

Sorry for neglecting you all! I'm going to try to pick up to blogging around 3 times a week like I used to. It's a lot of fun.

Now I must go - my little brother is 7 today, and we're having some friends over soon!

(this is him a year and a half ago.)

Happy Birthday, Ben!!


Thursday, October 22, 2009

A Frustrating Problem


I just realized that I've got to redo some pictures in my Etsy shop.

This does not look like the same color as this.

And the sad reality is that neither representation is quite correct.
"Fig", in actuality, is not as purple as the first example, nor is it quite as pink as the second example.

This realization has made me quite distraught because, for some unknown reason, my inner photographer has died. I always take like 100 pictures in order to get 5 good ones for Etsy. And lately, I can't even seem to manage 5. I don't know if it's the camera, or if it's me, but what used to be fun is now a dreaded task. I suppose I could just open up picnik or something and tweak colors until I think they're closer to real life, but I would hate to mess up and misrepresent.
But I'm already misrepresenting! That's the problem!

So, until I realized that I was having an absolutely delightful day.
And now I've decided this little trifle shan't ruin it.

I had pumpkin spice coffee this morning, thanks to my fantastic aunt. (love you!)
My dears Katey and Alicia came over and shared it with me. Then Katey and I went for a forever-long walk and talked about C.S. Lewis and becoming and all sorts of nice things.

I expounded upon my recent realization that to become who you aspire to be, you must attempt to be it in order to really become.
**blank stare**

The more I try to say what I mean the less it sounds like what I meant to say.

I think I'll just go continue having a productive day.

Happy trails, yo.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Happy Monday!

The sun is shining, the birds are singing, the air is cold, and it's a pretty day.
I've had two cups of coffee, I'm still wearing my flannel pants, and I have 3 crochet orders to work on.

Got some stuff cleared up with God yesterday. It's a lot easier to be joyful when there's nothing sitting on top of your conscience.

And just now I took an hour long break from blogging to cook brunch.
Now that I've had that coffee plus cheese eggs, grits, and ham gravy, I think I'm pretty much set for a super day. :)

**hugs to all the peeps**

And just cuz I thought this post needed a picture, here's a shot of a lovely day from last month. This was taken on my way home from my last day working at preschool. I miss that drive - it was so pretty on a sunny day!

I'm so glad it's actually fall! We kind of skipped it last year. The drought killed it.

So, besides for crocheting like mad, I think I may also run some errands with Laura and go for a walk.

What are your plans?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Re: hats, adjectives, and audiobooks

Wow. My blogging skillz are dying!
**dramatic noooooooo**

At least I'm here though, right?

Just thought I'd drop by and show off some more new stuff in my Etsy shop. Told you I'd jump on that ball, didn't I? ;-)

So, here's the new lemongrass beanie. I can seriously whip up one of these in a few minutes. Minutes, I tell you! Did I ever mention that I love instant gratification?
Perhaps now I need to work on my flower-makin' skillz, because it does look a little plain, doesn't it? But I think it could be a good boy hat, too, and boys don't like flowers.
I also just so happen to be very proud of this "eggplant" beret. I hated purple up until sometime last year. Now I love it. (all purples not included. for example: Barney purple. yuck. Also not a fan of pastel purple.)
I haven't done a good literary post in a while. Maybe that's what I should do next.
I listened to Tess of the D'urbervilles last month. You know why? Because it was the only other audiobook in the library narrated by Davina Porter. I seriously love that lady's narration. The book was fantastically devastatingly, depressingly romantically beautiful.
I'm pretty big on the "ly" adjectives. ;-)
Cumulative adjectives, too.

I'm moving on past Davina Porter, though. I plan to listen to Big Fish this week. It's narrated by some guy. I don't remember his name.

And in case you're wondering what's with the audio books instead of lovely, real-life pages, I shall tell you why. It's because it's awfully hard to read and crochet at the same time. Really, I prefer to read pages than listen to someone else narrate, but when I do so much crocheting the books get neglected.

Sooo... If you'll excuse me, I believe I'll be off to notify the DOR that my business has changed locations.


Monday, October 5, 2009

Crochet Update

It's been a good week, Etsy-wise. And otherwise, actually. But since I can't think of anything to say about the otherwise part, this post shall focus on Etsy happenings.

Sales are up this week! woot!

I didn't think the green vest I love so very much would ever sell, but I was wrong.

at TaylorHouse Designs ordered some custom gloves in navy with mustard trim. They turned out really cute!

One order this week was placed by a name I recognized. Hooray for return customers!! She ordered some blue slippers and black gloves. Turns out, she placed a custom order before, and I never got back with her about it. That's embarrassing. But she still came back! Yay!

In other crochet news, you finally get to see the "fantastically pretty hat" I mentioned in a previous post.

You don't have to think it's awesome, but I'm still thrilled with it.
Since I made it up as I went, I don't have a pattern. Sad! I guess I should try to decode it sometime. However, making it up as I go is fun sometimes, so I did it again.

People keep asking if I've found a new job now that we've moved. I haven't. Just so happens, I haven't been looking. Honestly, I don't plan to. Not yet, anyways. My plan for now is to really focus on my Etsy shop. Make new things, list more frequently, ...I dunno. Try to make my presence a little more known. And I'm looking forward to it. Pouring more concentrated effort into making my little shop work will be fun!

As for this very present moment, I think I need to see if there's any chocolate ice cream left. All of a sudden I feel like rambling, and this post is long enough already. =D

Have a happy week!

Sunday, September 27, 2009



Life is good.
It's hard, and frustrating, and I'm selfish...
But God has blessed me so much, and He is good, and life is good.

I'm sorry I don't have any pictures!

For some reason I had this thought that once summer over, things would gear back down.

But I'm having lots of fun. Church is fun, and hanging out with church friends is fun... and hanging out with Katey and Alicia is fun. We like to get together and go for walks.

It's my last week of working at preschool.

I still miss my bird. **sigh**

Why do I insist on bringing up the sad things at the end?!

ANYWAYS. sorry for the sporadic-ness. Just thought I'd let you know I'm alive and quite well.
And very sad I didn't get any comments on my last post. ;-)

Maybe I should do an etsy giveaway to kick-start getting back into the swing of things. I decided it's time to put forth more Etsy effort since I'm out of a job now. We shall see!

Have a happy week, ok? And if you feel so inclined, leave me a comment about the moment that made you happiest recently.

my recent happy moment: On the way to choir practice this afternoon I had a bottle of Coca-Cola. I love the little smoky swirl of vapor that comes out right when you first open the cap. Never fails to make me happy. :)

Oh, and I finished reading Deception by Randy Alcorn. Good stuffs, that.


Thursday, September 17, 2009

Oh, the adventures!

We have moved into our new house. Built in 1982, it has some interesting... character flaws?
Moving has been a big ol' pain!! And there's still stuff in the old house, and boxes, boxes, boxes in the new house. However, New House is now pretty homey, and the adjustment has been easier than I thought it would be.

Turns out, *dun dun dun* I am NOT getting to keep my job. It's just not gonna work out. So, I'm very sad. And I cried again. ha! But after moping around and being grumpy for the past two days, I've decided it's of no use. It's not very fun to walk around being a downer all the time. So, I'm resigned to the disappointment, and trusting that other good things will happen. :) Stopping at Quik Trip and getting a latte last night worked wonders, too.

In the meantime, I'm working the rest of this month, and I intend to enjoy it. Much to my dismay, Mrs. Dawn was out this week, so I got to be the leader. Our projects did not get finished, and our Bible stories were rather violently abridged. Maybe violently isn't the right choice of words there... Anyways, it was a tough week. Today involved blood. Child running down hallway trips, plows headlong into corner of water fountain... large gash in forehead... mhm. I have the blood on my shirt to prove it. **points proudly** I forgot to change. lol It's kind of like a battle scar I'm proud of. Poor little dude. He'll have a lovely scar from that one. But isn't it said chicks dig scars?

The past three afternoons have found me at the Old House after work, gathering stuff to take back to the New House. It's creepy in there. All empty and echoey and sad. Forlorn and forgotten... **sniff** It was a good house. I get scared though. Noises make me jump. And everything is louder since it's empty in there. Being alone there in the emptiness is so weird, after living there for so long.

So, I still miss my bird, in case you were wondering. Funny how he'd sort of become ingrained in my thought proccesses. I've caught myself thinking stuff like "I bet Vincent will be glad when all this moving stuff is over" or "where did they move Vincent's cage?" ... And then I remember he's not there. :P

I actually went to the library today to check my blog and update it. Somehow I spent an hour online and never did what I went to do. I'm at the Looneys' house now. I LOVE them being our neighbors!! YAY! We went for a walk together the other night and got to talk about all of our grumpinesses. It was great.

By the way, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is the saddest. movie. ever. Beautiful, but sad.

Quite the sporadic update, this was. You are now in the know. I feel like I'm missing something, but of course I don't know what it would've been.

I need to make myself some new slippers. :)

Have a happy weekend!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Happy Bullets

  • We're moving this weekend!
  • I own three boxes packed full of books!
  • I get to keep my job!
  • Today was the first day of school!
  • I just now found the new, cool earrings I thought I'd lost!
  • Yesterday I finished a fantastically pretty hat.
  • I wore my pretty hat to work today, and I looove it.
  • My French press and I are getting reacquainted.
  • The hairs on my head are now long enough to wear up in a clip!
  • God is so good. All the time.
What are you happy about this week?

Saturday, September 5, 2009

We're moving.
It seems rather sudden. In less than two weeks my family will be living in a house half an hour away from here. Different house. Different city. More people. More traffic. Less trees. Less hills. Less distance between our home and the places we go.

Funny how life works, though. All of a sudden I realize how much I like this house. Our long, gravel driveway. The road we live on. The surrounding woods. Being able to walk from one end of the house to the other in the dark, knowing exactly where everything is (except when there's something unexpected in the middle of the floor!).

But I really am happy that we're moving. It's a good house, and I liked it when we went to see it. It's so much closer to everything than our home "out in the sticks." And, get this: It's on the very same street as our bestest friends in the whole wide world. How cool is that? We've always talked about how cool it would be if we were neighbors, and now we will be! So, it really is pretty exciting.

Dread at having to pack up all of our junk and scour both houses has sort of killed the excitement for the moment, though. Packing is nothing compared to the real joy-killer. What could be worse than packing and cleaning, you ask? It is this:

I can no longer work at the little preschool in town. I'm pretty much devastated about that. (I cried after I called Mrs. Nancy to tell her so.) All summer long I've anticipated going back to work. Back to my sweet boys from last year, back to spending weekday mornings being "Miss Caitlin," reading the same books over and over, repeating playground rules, passing out second helpings of goldfish and reminding little hands that snack is for eating, not squishing.

Last week I spent every morning preparing our room for the first week of school, and now I don't get to be there. So... I'm pretty much heartbroken about that. And people keep saying, "don't worry, there are plenty of preschools where you're going! I'm sure you can get a job there!" But that's not the point. It's not my preschool. I'm sure I can get a new job, and make friends with new teachers, and love a new set of kids, but the point is that I've missed everybody from our smalltown preschool over the summer, and now I don't get to go back to them.

The thought also struck me that I won't be going to the little brick Post Office in town for all of my shipping needs any more. Mr. Bob always asks how business is going, and says I'm their favorite customer. :) The local P.O. where we're moving is bigger and busier.

Lest you think that I'm complaining, let me reassure you! I'm happy we're moving. I think it's a wise move, and will be very beneficial. We'll be so close to everything, best friends included! The house is perfect for us, and getting it just right -like we did with this house- will be a fun process.

I've just been wanting to write a sad post about how I'll miss the people at preschool, and the post office, and the woods, and our road, and being close to Mema's. Now that I've done so, you can expect ... well, I don't know what you can expect. =)

Enjoy the long weekend!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

I found a funny picture of my Vincent the other day. (It looks like he's screaming or yawning, but he was probably just bringing up some food from his crop... how boring. lol) Having a bird around was lots of fun, and I definitely want another one.

The thought entered my head that perhaps I should just get a normal little parakeet, but I dismissed the notion almost immediately. After having a parrotlet, a budgie would be so blah. :P Not that I don't like them - as a matter of fact, I was thinking of getting one a couple months ago, but I knew it would make Vincent mad. lol

So, we shall see what happens on the bird front. I'm sure I want another parrotlet (the turquoise ones are so pretty!!), but I don't know when I'll be able to get one. For one thing, I'm trying to save money and I want a new pair of eyeglases. For another, there aren't really any local breeders. But you know I'll keep you updated, whatever happens.

In the meantime, you can enjoy kitten pictures. ;-)

This is a nice flattering shot of them. Spectre's sisters are having allergy problems or something, so their little eyes don't look too swell. Poor dears.

They're only like 5 weeks old, but they've gotten really adventurous. I came bounding up the porch steps the other day and nearly tromped on them! Usually they stay close to the shed they live under, but apparently they're exploring further territory now. After I took this picture, their mom wandered off while they took a little nap.

Crocheting has been sort of a drag since I finished my earflap hat... I want to make something new and cool, but I'm never satisfied with my ideas once I start working on them! However, I did make this pretty wool beret this week. I crocheted as I watched X-Men.

The beret was finished before the movie wasn't over, so I started on these little wristies. Then I finished them during an episode of Star Trek.

So, now you know.

This week at work we're getting everything all set up. Yesterday I washed toys. Today I decorated our bulletin board and door. Yay! Tuesday is Open House and the first day of school is Wednesday. I'm so excited!

Hope you're having a good week, too. :)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Bring on the cold!

I need a reason to wear my new hat!

Actually, I'm sad that summer is over, and would rather winter not rush upon us. But still. My lovely pointy and stripey earflap hat is begging to be worn!!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Aventures dans la Cuisson

Last night I decided to make some French bread to go with our spaggetti.
Seeing as how I've not made French bread before, I was a little nervous.
It was for naught - the bread was perfect. So beautiful was it that I told Daddy not to cut into the second loaf so that I could preserve and frame it.
Of course, that didn't happen.

So, I'm making more today. ;-)

Also on yesterday's agenda was banana bread.
Also a success.

I should bake more often.

P.S. I love how Picnik makes all my pictures look quaint. :)

Friday, August 21, 2009

To My Little Green Bird

Dear Vincent,

Tonight I'll be sad when I go to bed because you won't be there for me to say goodnight to.
I'm gonna make banana bread this week, and I'll be sad because you won't be here to eat some. I already got your cage cleaned and put away so I won't have to be sad every time I see it. Somebody had a hair dryer blowing earlier, and it was a little strange because you weren't here to make that obnoxious fire-alarm sound at it. That's one thing I won't miss about you, buddy.

Aside from that, you'll be missed. A lot. Even though I called you a jerk, and devil-spawn-bird. And nicknamed you Evil. I'll miss taking you for car rides. Why did you always feel the need to take a shower in your tiny little water cup whenever we got in the car? Oh, and I'm sorry I scared you the other day when I attempted to take you for a bike ride. lol And even though it was annoying like crazy, you wouldn't have been you if you had been sweet and non-grumpy all the time, so I guess I'll miss your crazy grumpiness too.

I'll think of you every time I hear Josh Groban's "Vincent." I'm glad you liked that song. Thanks for chirping and singing with me whenever I sang it to you. Sorry I didn't sing to you more often. I know singing with me was one of your favorite things. Like just the other night, when I was singing nonsense before bed -I noticed you chirping with me from under your blanket. That was so cute. :)

I'm sorry I let you get hurt. You were supposed to be with me for a long time. At least a couple more years. Ha! I had even imagined how you would be mean to my future boyfriend/husband. It was going to be hilarious. You would be jealous and attack him, and he wouldn't like you, but I would say tough noogies, and tell him to get over it. Yesh, I'm silly sometimes.

Some people probably think it's silly to be so sad about a bird dying. (It's probably silly to write a letter to you as a blog post.) When I left your cage outside a few months ago and you flew away, I was miserable. Somebody said "what's the big deal? It's just a bird." Sure. I guess you were just a bird. But you were a very loved bird. That's the difference. And when something you love is gone, it hurts. And if you loved a lot, it hurts a lot. I loved you a lot.

By the way, thanks for getting up the courage to fly back down out of that tree. And thanks for being so darn sweet to me the last few days. It was a nice change from your random attacks.

(Feb. '06)

I don't have many pictures of you, and I don't have tons of blog posts about you, but to have been such a tiny little bird you were a pretty major part of my life the last couple years.

I have a bird!
He has a name!
Another post about him
We liked the same music
"A Day in the Life of Vincent"

(Jan. '08)

Love you.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Impromtu Confessional

Drowned in good intentions
Changing is a fight
Ghosts of resolutions
haunt me, mocking in the night

I stop to reevaluate
Who I am and what I’ve done
And realize I’ve begun to hate
The other person I’ve become

I can’t seem to escape from me
Become the one I want to be
It looks like what they say is true
Your own worst enemy is you

The self I want to be drags me deeper
Cause I know I can’t reach that high

Cost of complacency’s getting steeper
Why’s it so hard to do what’s right?

This metamorphosis
Is taking too long
My pride and apathy
Have proved my better self wrong

Perfection’s always out of reach
Eluding my best efforts still
I’ll settle for a better me
But can I conquer my own will?

My feeble inability
Held the answer all along
This battle’s ending on my knees
Bringing me back where I belong

That's a song I wrote this summer. The italics are my favorite part. :)
One day I was feeling very let-down and disappointed in myself, and some thoughts just started swirling around. Decided I'd better write them down before they flew away. So, I did. And I worked on them for about two hours, had the song mostly formed, and then it just stopped. The creativity ran out, and I only had about four phrases I knew needed help. So, I left it alone and forgot about it.

Just the other day I remembered it, pulled up the file, and tweaked those few phrases.
Now I'm happy with it.

It's the song of my summer. As I said, it's been fun. However, if I'm being completely honest, spiritually it's been a drag. Which is MY fault, I know. Mostly I just used God as a crutch for the hard times, and threw a few "thank you, Jesus!"es up to the sky when something made me happy. And while I've been praying for a few people regularly, I haven't kept up the open line of communication prayer is supposed to be.

And here's the terrible part: I know this. It's not like I've blindly slipped into lukewarm Christianity. It starts out as complacency. "I'm doing pretty good at this Christian thing." Always a mistake. As many times as it's been said, when you stop moving forward, you start sliding backward. But I'm not posting a sermon here. lol If I am, it's for me.

The other terrible part is that the song is true, up til the last verse. I haven't got down on my knees and made things right yet. My human nature is being the ugliest it's been in a while. I was singing mindlessly along with the radio the other day. "Empty me of the selfishness inside, every vain ambition and the poison of my pride, and any foolish thing my heart holds to. Lord, empty me of me so I can be filled with You." And all of a sudden I realized I was singing a lie. I don't want to be unselfish. I don't want to surrender. And I don't really even know why, because I do know that when I'm fully surrendered to God, it's the most awesome thing in the world. To just have that openness between yourself and the Creator of the Universe is indescribably beautiful. So why am I rejecting it?!

Hm. I didn't really mean to write a confessional. Then again, maybe I did. Guess I felt like I needed to be completely honest with myself and everybody.
But now you know.
And so do I.
And so does God.

It's time for a change.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Of Owls and Spectres

My bird just flew past and distracted me. Vincent's gotten pretty good at flying through the house. Sometimes he lands on the edge of the fishbowl, which I find comical.

Yeah, that's not how the beginning of this post was supposed to go. Then again, I didn't have a beginning planned or anything, so it's okay.

Thursday night was movie night at the Looney's house. Yeah! After the first movie, we sat around in the kitchen for a few minutes, just taking a break before we put on the second one. Or so I thought. All of a sudden, we're all singing "Happy Birthday." I like singing the birthday song, so I'm just singing along, wondering whose birthday it is now (there have been lots of August birthdays), when Alicia starts walking toward me with a glowing little birthday cake. I was like "Oh RIGHT! It's MY birthday! sort of..."

They gave me a little surprise party!!
It was sooo awesome. Katie stuck a tiara on my head, and I blew out my candles and just sat there and grinned like a little kid while presents started appearing out of nowhere. Among which gifts were these lovely owl bookends from Sheesh
That's not a very good picture of them.
I'll just have to take pictures of all my presents and make a whole post about them. ;-)

In other news (I love that lead-in, but I try not to overuse it, really I do), one of the resident kitties had a litter of kittens. A white/calico kitty, a grey kitty, and a white and grey kitty. I saw the white and grey one and declared that I was keeping him.

His name shall be Specter.
Or Spectre.
I haven't decided yet. What do you think?

See how cuuuute he is!!?

So, if you want a kitten, let me know. His very cute sisters will eventually need to be relocated.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to make hot dogs for supper.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Driver's Ivy Scally Flat?

Hello! This is a crochet story.
If that doesn't interest you, you may leave now.
(but it does have cool pictures. ;-) I promise.)

So, apparently there are a lot of names for this particular style of hat. I've heard driver's cap, golf cap, ivy cap, scally cap, flat cap... If there are any technical differences between the hat structures, I stand unawares.

At any rate, I've always wanted to make one. I browsed for a pattern a couple times, but didn't really find anything, so I moved on. Then I watched this music video the other day. (Need To Breathe - Washed by the Water) I just kept going "duuude! Their hats are awesome!" through the whole video. Then I decided that I Really Must Make One.

So you know what I did? I did what any sane person would do.
I whipped out Laura's trusty laptop (oh, wait. I already had it cuz I was watching the music video. nevermind.), and started looking for crochet patterns. All of the ones that claimed to be what I wanted were floppy, beret-like things with brims poking off one edge. Of course, that's fine and good if it's what you're going for, but that's not what I was going for. For hours upon end, I searched for a pattern. For hours upon end, I was met with nothing.

Being the brilliant person that I am, I exclaimed, "if I could just find a template of the shapes I'd need - like from a sewing pattern or something - then I could figure out how to crochet them and put them together!" So, I began a search for a template. Or any sort of sewing pattern for a flat cap. Yeah, um... all I got was the medieval muffin sort of flat cap. And one person on Etsy had a pattern. Good for her. But I really didn't want to pay that much for a sewing pattern when what I wanted was a crochet pattern anyways. (It just occurred to me that I'm really dragging this story out.)

When I went shopping and found ZERO cap patterns at the store, I gave up. Looking for patterns, that is. I went home determined to create one without a pattern. Hey, that's how I make almost everything else, right?

Sooo, I pulled out a nice little conductor-y type hat of my own to help me estimate the size my cap would need to be. Then I drew a nice little shape for how the top of my cap should look. Then I found a nice little skein of wine colored wool and got to work. The sides and the brim were a lot harder to figure out than the top. The brim was just a big ol' pain, actually.

Two Star Trek episodes, one Janette Oke movie, and at least 6+ hours of non-television aided work later, I have my SUPER AMAZING CAP!!

I say, folks, I am so insanely proud of this thing.
And that stupid brim gave me fits.
It's a little big on me, and the pattern definitely needs tweaking (that is, if I can reinterpret the chicken-scratch I furiously scribbled as I worked), but I'm very happy with it. It looks just like it was supposed to!!

P.S. Isn't my brother Nick a fantastic model?

P.P.S. I know you were all just dying to find out what the new thing in my Etsy shop was. (that was said with just a smidgen of sarcasm, in case you mis-read it silently to yourself.)

Beautiful red fingerless gloves. Now you know.