Saturday, January 26, 2013

Coupon Code

So I've been having some heart problems lately and my doctor prescribed a bunch of medical tests and now the bills are starting to come in and I need to make some extra money. I've been sweet talking all of my theatre contacts and teachers to throw me some extra work but all the long hours (lots of 16-18 hour days the past few weeks) aren't helping my heart and I've decided to put my etsy shop on sale.

My coupon code is DAYOFFFROMWORK and gives 10% off every item, even ones already on sale. Hopefully I can sell enough to make a dent in the medical bills and grow my shop a little bit more.

Every sale really helps my bottom line and makes me prouder of what I make. Please take a look around the shop and buy something if you can or at least share my shop on your Facebook page, feel free to share the coupon code as well, every little bit helps!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Feeling Blah

So I've been feeling blah the last day or so. I took a few days off from crocheting to give my hands/wrists a rest and try to take care of other things (like get my butt back on my treadmill since I'm nearly halfway to my weight loss goal--but that's an entirely different blog). I miss the comfort crocheting gives me.

There's something so comforting and calming about crocheting. Its soft artistic nostalgia that puts my head at ease and lets me relax like nothing else. It takes me back to the Barbie doll clothes I used to make when we couldn't afford to buy her new clothes, I even made little ice skates for her using paperclips! I also turned my 8th grade 'egg baby' into Cartman from South Park by turning his head sideways and crocheting a little hat and body and using Weeple feet to make him look authentic. I was very creative as a child and left to my own devices most days at my Gramma's house who would let me use all of her scrap yarn or buy me new skeins whenever we went on shopping trips--and this was before Joann's and Michael's, Hughes Market had a yarn section next to the bread aisle and we had a mom and pop store Fabric Well nearby. I truly miss that store (it closed about 3 years ago), even though the old ladies who worked there ALWAYS gave me looks like I was shop lifting every single time I walked around another display.

Anyhow, I had a sad tonite and I think the best remedy for that is for me to get out a WIP (work in progress) and have a little 'me' time.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


I was just looking around Pinterest at craft ideas with buttons (while cleaning this weekend I found hundreds of buttons in a storage bin) and I can across a 'pin' that simply said: Yarn is cheaper than therapy.


Without my love of yarn and crocheting I might not be at the emotionally stable place that I am currently enjoying. While my Gramma was sick for four years in and out of hospitals and convalescent homes and in the 14 months since her death I have crocheted more than I ever have in my life combined. Even with my darkest depression and the sadness of mourning I was crocheting at least a few times as week with yarn constantly around me every day.

I loved sharing each of my projects with my Gramma. She had been the one to teach me how to crochet when I was about five years old and helped me up until the end. A few weeks before she went to the hospital at the end she gave me her zippered pouch of crochet hooks--I protested (as I typically did when she gave me money or gifts for no special reason, I was just happy to spend time with her) saying that they were her's and I had a bunch of my own and what if she wanted to make something. She said that her arthritis and shaking was making it too hard for her to hold her crochet work and that I would be sure to use them. I was scared and sad that she was nearing the end and she was but I have her zippered pouch tucked away someplace safe, unable to use them yet.

They still feel like hers.

My family's tradition has always been to bury your loved ones with items that were important to them and I made sure that I included one of her most used crochet hooks, G, in the casket.

Well, now that I'm crying I think I'll end this post by saying that yarn and crocheting have been a constant in my life and those are very hard for me to come by for me.

Sunday, January 13, 2013


I'm so proud of myself. After spending most of the day out in the garage cleaning it with my mom (over 35 years of our family history in there, plus all the random relatives we've had living with us here), and we got rid of 3 trash cans worth of junk and 2 car fulls of items donated to the thrift store (and I have a CR-V!)

At one point I looked across the street and saw a cute kittie I'd never seen around the neighborhood, I called out to it and she came right over (looking both ways before crossing--not kidding). The poor thing was so tiny compared to my two turkey cats and seemed friendly enough, she rubbed against me and let me pick her up so I brought out a bag of treats and gave her some, she ate half the bag so my mom suggested that I give her wet food. She DEVOURED the entire can barely taking a breathe between chomps. I texted my boyfriend (at the time on the first thrift store run) and he said, give her a second can--its cool.

So we let her hang out in the fenced part of the yard while we continued on the garage and she was so cute and friendly we finally let her come in (separated from the other animals for safety reasons). We took her to the vet to check if she was chipped and of course she isn't, so she's still with us tonite. The sweetest cat I've taken care of in years, mine don't like being held and only want love on their terms, but otherwise well trained. Tomorrow we're planning on putting up FOUND posters and checking with the local cat rescue group to find a home for her. We would love to keep her but its complicated. So for now, she's in the man cave in her very own kittie bed with her own food/water/litter box and lots of love.


Back to my original post!

Yesterday I was complaining about the abundance of WIPs in my house, well tonite I bagged all of them except for the project I was actively working on and put them all away. It was a relief to only see one thing in front of me and I actually got to the last two rows of it and realized I needed another skein of that yarn, oh well, this is what always happens. Back to Michaels! But I really love this pattern that I'm adapting my project from. I'm going to do a series of these "infinity scoodies" and make them a staple in my shop---photos tomorrow after I get it all done :)

Friday, January 11, 2013

WIP aka work in progress

I find all these great ideas and get started on them right away then get distracted by my responsibilities like work, cleaning, errands, making dinner---you know boring adult stuff. Next thing you know I have WIPs hanging around every room of the house and in my car and I'm overwhelmed.

Its not an ohmygod I'm never gonna finish all of these projects (statistically only 80% of them will ever be completed), its more of a "I hate not getting things accomplished and these will be amazing finished items and then I'll use up my yarn stash" reality, my yarn stash will never be depleted. I go to Michaels or Joanns to get something I need for a custom order and everything is on sale and let's me use my smartphone app's coupons even for sale and clearance items and next thing you know my boyfriend is groaning because he can't even walk around the bedroom because there are bags of yarn and other supplies all over the place.

So maybe my New Years Resolution (which I am fairly good at keeping/attaining) should be to finish my WIP before I start another one, except for in cases of pending orders.


Total side note but Cartoon Network should NOT play Nutcracker songs as the background music for Family Guy and American Dad! commercials...In fact NO ONE should EVER play ANY music from Nutcracker EVER AGAIN.

Its a stage hand thing. We're kind of required to hate Nutcracker, but that's an entirely different post.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

My kittie helper

I'm so jealous of etsy shops that say: From a pet and smoke free environment.

I try my hardest to keep my animals away from my projects but I fail miserably every time.

I put my yarn into gallon size Ziplock bags when I get them. I pull the end from the bag and store it in the bag. I put the finished projects into Rubbermaid bins.

Then I realize I am not as fastidious as I think I am and realize I have a handful of UFO (Un-Finished Objects) that sit on the table when I get up to refill my tea cup or sit on my lap when I get distracted watching a tv show......and guess who sits with me while I watch tv? My foreman: Rumble, my tabby. And to keep things fair, his sister, Tootsie, is sitting on the adjacent loveseat.....she doesn't like me much, she's a total daddy's girl.

A few weeks ago my mom was over hanging out and laughed out loud when she saw me chasing Rumble though the house, first thru the den then the dining room trying to retrieve my WIP (Work In Progress) that he had attacked---through the Ziplock bag and ran away with, out of my hands, crochet hook included. Apparently he was very attracted to the ball of yarn spinning inside the bag.

I love my kitties (even Tootsie who has all but stolen my boyfriend away from me), but I do not love taking tweezers to every finished project to collect any stray hairs of mine and kittie fur. Oh well, its a trade-off for the excellent supervision I get from my foreman.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Figuring out a Signature Style

I love watching old movies from the 1930s-1960s. Women all had this amazing sense of style and really put effort into how they presented themselves. The had their own signature style.

I consider the day a success if I get out of my sweats....which I didn't today. In my defense I really needed a lazy day and I still left the house to donate a car full of stuff to the thrift store.

I was thinking about how my university "re-branded" itself my senior year and had a new logo and EVERYTHING and I mean E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G. had that new logo and the website printed on it. You knew instantly when you got something in the mail that it was from the school--every page within the website had that logo prominently displayed.

I've been thinking about doing that to my shop for some time now. In fact one of my very talented artist friends is in the process of designing me my very own logo! She is incredibly gifted with pen and ink (among many other mediums) and has shown me several different options and will be fine tuning the one I chose soon.


I also need to figure out a "signature style" for items in my shop. A lot of the shops I really admire specialize in one type of item but I make several different items that are all connected.

Maybe I'll just start making everything with skulls (like I tried out again today) or hearts or stars or something. We'll just have to wait and see where life and inspiration take me. 

Opening myself to people and opportunities

I have some OCD and lots of feelings of perfectionism fighting with impatience. My mind is a constant battlefield.

This is one of the reasons I really like to crochet, I can get sucked into the repetitive motions and the organized pattern and just count a lot and it really helps me calm down and just focus on creating. The possibilities of crocheting are endless and looking through patterns and yarns fill me with hope and eagerness and the greatest desire to contribute to the artistic community.

I never feel that way with people. Meeting a bunch of new people makes me skeptical and apprehensive and I see all the negatives and put up a personal bubble to isolate myself to some extent. I let new people see the persona that is appropriate for the situation but never all of me. Which is probably due to my life-long connection to the stage and being burned by those who were closest to me.

So we keep trying every day. Some days are winners. Others are not but the only way you loose it to not try at all.

(Kind of depressing today huh? I didn't intend it to be but its what came out of my fingers...I even had a pretty good day!)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Parade Floats and Caramel Cheesecake Trivia

Taking advantage of my time off of both of my jobs (due to the off season, not vacation days) we went on an adventure today to see the Tournament of Roses Parade Floats in Pasadena. This was a bigger ordeal than I perceived it to be only because of the lack of parking and how many people were there! It was like Disneyland on the most crowded day during a parade when you just wanna cross to another land and can't quite get to the Partners statue. (That'll make sense to the Disney freaks)

The floats were very interesting to inspect from a designers point of view. I loved seeing how much planning and detail work had to go into each one of them. Even the tow hitches were covered in some plant/natural accent. Some of the floats were very uninspiring while others were just outstanding. The four of us all had different favorite ones but mine was the Dr. Seuss "oh the places you'll go" (there were actually two of them and both were awesome and a sequel float.)

Trying to decide on a place to eat afterwards was difficult (as it always is for us) but we finally decided on Hooters in Burbank. The main part of the place was filled with "Gators" who were very loud and had Gators' trivia going on over the restaurant's sound system....ugh! Even the Hooters girls were over it all. We had great service and since none of us had ever eaten there before it was an adventure.   The highlight was the Hooter's Trivia on the few flatscreens that weren't showing Gators or other sporting events. I L.O.V.E. trivia games, especially computer ones, but this one was not as fun for me because it was mostly sports questions (always my weakest subject). If you earn enough trivia points (thru your smartphone--which I appreciate) you get free food/discounts on your bill. Had we played every game from the moment we walked in we would have gotten our dessert for free but maybe next time.

I was very happy that all four of us had on my hat creations while we walked around everywhere. We got a lot of stares and some big compliments on my Lorax hat ( )and my mom's cookie monster hat. ( )

Here's to new artistic adventures, showing off my shop and yummy caramel cheesecake for dessert, even when you have to pay full price for it.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A new year, maybe some optimism?

I've never been accused of being an optimist---not even as a young human child, but I feel like this year is a turning point for me. I'll be turning 30 at the end of the year and that's the whole return of Saturn phase. (The planet Saturn will be in the same position as it was during my birth) and it has a lot of significance.

I want to actually use my blog to post my random musings and lots of my craft projects. I'll be going thru some of my old projects and posting them with how I made them and how I wish I could improve upon them.

I also want to keep better track of how I spend my days, I frequently feel like my life is flying by but that I'm not getting nearly enough accomplished.

Today I woke up (after a couple of hours or rest, not sleep exactly) to some of my closest friends in various states of hangover/sleep. We hung out and then made a big breakfast buffet for everyone to share (delicious bacon and kielbasa egg scramble, some apple slices, toast, day old Starbucks muffins/pastries courtesy of a barista sleepover guest, and milk/juice/coffee. 

Once everyone left my coworker/good friend L and my amazingly sweet and tolerant boyfriend decided they wanted to go to the L.A. Zoo so we took off and within an hour we were checking out the zebras, lemurs and more birds that I could count!

We finished the day with dinner at BJs Brewery after having false starts at several highly Urbanspoon/Yelp recommended places that were closed due to the holiday. Lots of yummy foods were consumed but my favorite is always the Pazookie (a freshly baked cookie of your choice in a small pizza pie pan (mine was about 4 inches in diameter) with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream melting on top of it.

Light-hearted conversations all day and no stress or hurrying to make a deadline made for a great first day of the year! I will make a conscience effort to have more fun, light-hearted days this year and less stress filled, I hate everything days.