Sunday, January 30, 2011

Expanding My Fiber Horizons

Yesterday I attended a "Learn to Crochet" class at a local yarn store, Sip & Knit.   The class was only $30 and I received two plus hours of instruction (there were only two students in the class, including me, so I basically received one-on-one instruction).  I was totally confused for the first hour and thirty minutes; I felt like I was struggling to get my mind around it and that I was just mimicking what the instructor was showing me.  I didn't know the how or why behind it.

I fumbled around and managed to create a simple crochet border on a knitted swatch.  It was not impressive but I had fun in the class and signed up for another one on the spot (Learn to Knit Continental).  I was intrigued and after I got home, I pulled up as many beginner crochet videos as I could and started practicing stitches.  I was a bit bored with it until I found granny squares.

I ran through five or six versions of the granny square until I finally understood the stitches.  This was my first completely successful attempt. (I'm using the crappiest of crappy acrylic yarn because I'm just practicing and why waste decent yarn?)

Granny Square
I added a different color as a border to practice what I learned in class.

Granny Square with border
It's not much.  But I am very excited about this.  I have to finish my knit blanket and maybe the second sock on my needles.  I want to tackle a crochet project.  I'll do some researching (i.e., reading blogs and crochet forums online).  Also, there is a lady at work who is an accomplished crocheter and I will ask her for a recommendation.

I'm nervous about our possible move.  Nervous because we will have to acclimate Miss Macy to another new place.  It's been six months since she's been with us and she's still a 'fraidy cat.  I want her to feel secure and I'm not sure how we will do that with the new place.

Look how little she looks!  Miss Macy all curled up.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Home Is Right Around The Corner

I enrolled in a knitting class for this Saturday - actually, it's a crocheting class for knitters.  I am trying to learn some good finishing techniques.  My common complaint about my knitting is that it doesn't look polished or properly finished.  A few people have recommended that I do a crochet border around my projects to hide the uneven or unsightly edges.

I knitted up a few dishcloths and plan to make at least one more.  I have just a bit of cotton yarn left and I'm trying to use it up.  The pattern I used is called Double Bump Dishcloth and it was a lot of fun to knit.  Tonight, I will start on the third one.

Plain Old White Cotton Dishcloth
Dishcloth Part II
I also started working on a lap blanket.  I'm using very soft acrylic yarn that I bought with a gift card from Michael's.  The colors are dark - I picked them out for Mr. Grumpbump.  I am concentrating on making the stripes look good.  I'm only about 1/3 done at this point.  It's a completely knit blanket and I'm carrying each color up the side.  I am hoping that my crochet class will give me some good ideas for a border for this project.

I love stripes!
Mr. Grumpbump and I are thisclose to signing a contract for a home.  Even if we have a signed contract (which we hope will be tonight), there are still several hurdles left.  We have to do a home inspection and the home has to appraise for at least the contract price.  The house has most of the features we were looking for and I think it the house for us.  That being said, I am not afraid to walk away from it, should any of the inspections come back negative.  If everything goes as planned, we could be closing by the end of March.

The house would be a much larger area for the cats to roam around in, and this will be very beneficial for Miss Macy.  Since she never gets to go outside, she will, on occasion, run around the living room.  She doesn't get very far since our apartment is only 800 square feet.   Additionally, the new house will give her plenty of more places to hide from Delilah.  The house has a Florida room (a patio with actual walls and windows) and I think both girls will love it.  All floors are wood or tile, so we don't have to worry about cleaning carpets.  

I am constantly in the cats' faces.  And they don't love it.  I always want to get that perfect picture of them to capture how cute they are.

Delilah Cat

Miss Macy

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Happiness Is A Sleeping Cat

Let's start off the New Year with a great picture of Delilah Bug.

Sleeping Beauty
That's my scrap blanket over her.  She's not usually a fan of having blankets or sheets over her but we've been experiencing colder weather these last six weeks.

We are starting to see some promise of relaxing between Delilah and Macy.  Close quarters still means that there is the occasion hiss or aggressive stance, but there are these moments between the two of them.  For example, during feedings, they can get rather close to each other with just a glance and I hold my breath waiting for the vocalizations to begin.  Instead, they just separate from each other.   I still hold out hope that they will be become friends.  To have a picture of these two curled up together.....I would die a happy woman.

Since my marriage to Mr. Grumpbump, my life is good.  This is very hard for me to admit openly because, well, I have a fear that to express your happiness and complacency in life just begs for bad things to happen.  I can no longer deny it; I am happy.  And we aren't even homeowners, yet.  It scares me to think about how I will feel when we actually own a home.

I have to go now.  Mr. Grumpbump wants to give me a massage.  Ah, the good life.