Monday, February 02, 2009

A multitude of things

Random Introduction
I'm sorry for missing posting yesterday, I was caught up in working on a project I will tell you about.

Also, I am aware that some of you are waiting for me to post 25 Random Things about me as it has been going around Facebook lately (Mom) and I will be doing that (actually, I may get on a roll and do 100 as I have done before, but I'll decide that when I write the post) later this week, right now I'm very please with myself and want to talk about everything else.

My Camera

The last three pictures of this post are taken with my old digital camera, proving to me one reason why I have kept this camera despite having my beloved DSLR for the past three years. Today I sent my DSLR out for cleaning. It's made me very nervous to do so - after all it's a very interesting postition to have all of your lens caps and the body cap handed back to you as they do not ship them with the camera and to know that it will be gone anywhere from two to four weeks.

But after it gets back, I should be much happier as I will not have the spots I have started to notice on my pictures. After three years of wear I do think it needs a good cleaning I just think that it's unfortunate that there is no where local that does this. I called photography schools, professional photographers and all the camera shops I could find. Everywhere sends them out.

I was glad to have my old camera though, as I'm really excited to show you my finished project at the end of this page and immediatly looked at Chad upon finishing the project and said - I need batteries for the camera now... luckily I had to run to Blockbuster anyway so the trip worked out for the best. Although, having a rechargeable battery, I had forgotten how expensive the batteries for this camera could be... makes me love my DSLR more.

A little Rambling ; )
I can't believe it's already February! Why did January fly by so quickly? I did manage to read one book (The Blood Brothers by Nora Roberts) and have started another. I'm working better on my projects, having almost completed organizing (there's been one small detour, you'll see it in a minute) but do still have two outstanding projects. Those will be finished this week. I refuse to let them linger longer. Period.

Not to mention that February is going to bring a little bit of a change for me. I plan on cross-training to another unit at work. This will still keep me a neonatal nurse (I love my patients) but will also give me more skills. I'm excited and nervous all at the same time, especially since I will be working with "big" patients. I've decided to cross train into our post-partum unit along with the level I nursery - for those not sure what that means it's the mom's after they've given birth and healthy babies. It never hurts to have more skills and now is the best time to do this with our census bouncing around so much.

Update on Projects
Even though I haven't progressed ont he previous two mentioned projects to the point of completion, other projects have been started, both started and finished, and the beginnings purchased for.

This does say something for my mental state and how I work, because with both unfinished projects it's been due to mental blocks and trying to work out small details. Working on something else gives me time to unwind and to work out the other problems (or resolve the fact that it's just not something to do right now) on everything else.

But it's been so long since you've seen any projects that I bet you're tired of me talking about them and actually want to see them.

First up, is something I've been talking about for awhile. Actually, it's not even mine. It's Chad's. Chad built his second table (the first one we've given to Grandpa and I keep forgetting to take a picture of it, even when I do have a camera with me) so that he'll have a work area to make his projects on. He also thought about cook outs and other things the table will be useful for. All he feels he has left to do is to stain it. I'm really proud that it's come out so beautiful:

Don't you agree? Now I just have to con him into building me a swift so that I don't have to use a lamp shade... I don't know if I'll be able to do that yet though.

Next in the knitting world comes a project that I'm currently working on - the ever famous Clapotis (if your a knitter online it's famous) in a cotton yarn that I purchased from Interlacements at SAFF in October:

I've also completed (well, almost, I still have to poke the handles through the bag) a Booga Bag made just a little bit larger than specified in the pattern. It is my first felted project (for those who don't know what that is - it's making an item out of a fiber that will shrink, usually wool, and then purposely shrinking it).

Here's the bag pre-felting:

And with one of my phones for size reference:And here it is with a phone after felting:

I do like it and I think that for now it will be my library bag (I've really been making more trips to the library lately).

In addition I used the extra yarn to make a little pouch that now houses my cell phone:I liked the button, even though it wasn't a perfect match and besides I was supporting the local quilt shop that I know I will be making more purchases from in the future.

That is because I may just be getting the hang of this sewing thing! I am very excited as that is one of my goals that I've wanted to do for a long time. Not to mention I'll have lot's of support from my friend Sue, my mother-in-law, and the quilt shop (I have plans to take a class there, I don't know which one, but I'll decide later, when I know my schedule better).

You see, I've had a purse that my mother-in-law made for me, without a pattern, that's just been sitting for months as I needed to put a strap on it. But the sewing machine and I have been in a disagreement for awhile, as I haven't been able to thread it.

In organizing my crafts, I came across some fabric that I purchased before we moved here to make scrub tops with. Well, they don't fit my allowed colors so I decided to use the fabric for what I wanted and also found a bag pattern.

Finally, after finding the fabric, and really being tired of my old purse, I decided enough was enough and that I could do this because the world will not crash around me if I make a mistake, sat down, and did it.

First I finished my strap, sewed it to the purse and filled it. I am sorry to say that I haven't taken pictures of it yet.

After that worked for me, I went to work on the little tote bag that my pattern had. Several (well say eight) hours later I had the pattern cut out, the pieces cut out, and had begun sewing. I was still stressing as for whatever reason I kept cleanching my jaw and went to bed with it really sore but I had this:

I was very optimistic as well about it and did not feel like a complete failure as I had before. Finally the sewing machine that I had Chad purchase for me several years ago was starting to not be such a mystery to me.

After returning from showing off my work to my friend Sue while we explored the new yarn store I was enamored and ready to work some more on my bag. I didn't think I would finish it but I did!

I chose not to put a zipper in it even though one was called for in the pattern because I was too lazy to dig through things and find where I had put the zipper.

And I'm very proud of myself as I believe I have a presentable project (even Chad likes it!)

There are things I will change when I do the project again (I have more than enough fabric to make the larger version of this bag, and I fully intend to) such as making sure the frogs are positioned better for the pattern and making longer handles so as to have the large version sit on the shoulder (I like bags, especially tote bags, but they have to be able to go on my shoulder).

This really was meant as a project to jump in and get my feet wet with sewing because I just wasn't able to apply the information and retain it until I had something I had done myself to understand what I read in my Sewing for Dummies book.

I feel that this really opens up a world of possibilities for me. After all, now my Christmas list will not only include yarn. That should make Sarah happy. But I doubt it as it will include fabric too. She's really going to be exasperated by me.

And Chad is finding part of this new hobby humorous. It's only taken five years but finally he has a wife that can iron as I've really refused to iron until I started doing this project. Plus I'm becoming a better cook who is now starting to multi-task in the kitchen. I just may become domesticated yet!

One Final Note

As a final note, because this post isn't long enough already, I do have to mention Summerville's new local yarn store (lys) The Village Knittery - as I've already mentioned I went today and really liked it. Very sweet owner who really has a diverse stock already, is looking to offer classes and is in a nice location that is right across from the parking garage that is free!

If you're in my area, like to knit or crochet and are looking for more fibers than Michaels or AC Moore offer (nothing wrong with what's there either, as I still use their offerings frequently) do check it out. You won't regret it!

That's it for now. Look for my post about random facts later this week!


Panhandle Jane said...

Congratulations on your developing sewing skills. You did a nice job on the bag.

bmom said...

Great job on the bag -- love the fabric. I made a felted bag out of that exact yarn -- yours could its twin.

Anonymous said...

Love love love your frog tote! Congrats on doing such a wonderful job on your first project. Oh, and Chad - I could use a table too (j/k)!


Melissa said...

Thank you very much everyone!