Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Summer 2014 Catch Up: Part I

Summer has flown by and there have been many days of worry and sadness as I continue to grieve the loss of my mom and go through living with tumors. BUT, there have also been days of joy sprinkled about and interspersed with loads of knitting. I thought I'd use some posts this week to catch up on everything that's been going on.

July watercolor class was this study of a lighthouse. We used masking to create the various white areas, which is one of my favorite techniques. You can paint over the masking and then roll it off later and you have magically created white spots! My birds and flowers came out huge, but I was pretty happy with other portions of the piece. I'm so glad that I started taking this monthly class because it is a way for me to be creative and artsy outside of the fiber arts. Working every day on designing, test knitting, and tech editing knitting and crochet is what I LOVE to do, but the reality is that it is my day job. Having a little side hobby that has zero expectations attached to it is fun and relaxing.

I've been spending every day of the week with Riley attached to my hip. He pretty much only leaves my side to eat or piddle. As I type, he is curled in a ball next to me. He is so old now, he can't really see or hear much, and he even took two tumbles down the stairs before we instituted Babygate! But, he can still smell and loves popcorn, which is how he got in this situation (pictured above). Little stinker flattened himself like a bug and went under the couch for a piece of popcorn. I heard these odd scratchy noises and looked under to find him wedged in the space. I couldn't resist a photo before rescuing his little butt.

One of the things I swore after surgery that I was going to do now that I don't have pain is go out to hear bands play. I LOVE music and over the years we just stopped going out because I would always end up sick. So, earlier this summer I looked over some schedules of bands and plotted a night out for July, August, and September. We twisted a few friends arms to come with us (ha!) and headed out to hear Cousin Roger. I was very excited about this evening because two of the guys in the band were in a band my college buddies and I obsessed over many years ago. We enjoyed the music and the colorful people, had some drinks, and hung out with friends. As the band's set was ending, they brought up the next musical act who was a third member of the same college band and they all sang together! It was like being 21 again.  Can't wait for our the next musical outing.

For several weekends in a row, we packed ourselves up and headed to a local park. It is just down the road from our house and there is a lovely hill between beautiful trees. We used to take Riley for picnics here after we first moved into our home 13 years ago. It's nice to make it back there now for some knitting (for me) and reading (for PK). I snapped this picture of PK and it turned out so well. 

The second weekend that we went to the park, we took along both of the dogs. Riley enjoyed a nice nap on the blanket while Kennedy had to growl at anything that moved. Hopefully, we can sneak in some more knitting in the park before fall. But, I suppose we can still go in the fall and just use the tables and benches. There is something fun about sitting on the ground, though!

So where is all the knitting, right? Well, a lot of it isn't "shareable" knitting. This translates to it being work knitting that I can't show photos of until patterns are released. But, I always have a fun knitting project going where I can just enjoy it. Meet Kiki's Bakery Bear...

One of my favorite new discoveries this year is the Bakery Bears podcast. My friend Christina of A Knitter's Life recommended that I check them out and I'm so glad she did. I have consumed all of their episodes so far and anticipate new podcasts every two weeks. The Bakery Bears are Kay and Dan Jones and they launched their videos with Kay's first pattern release...Mrs. Bakery Bear. I don't have any little ones with two feet, but I do have a four-footed one who LOVES her babies. She carries them around and snuggles with them for naps. I ventured to a local yarn shop and picked up a skein of Classic Elite Liberty Wool. (Side note: I scored the ball for about a buck!!! There was a Christmas in July sale going on and I had earned enough points for a good chunk of a gift card. I ended up getting yarn for the bear, designer yarn for two hat designs, and two other skeins of yarn for $8! Yarn score! I think I had a crafting shopper's high the rest of the day! Although, I escaped telling Patrick how much you have to spend to earn the gift cards...lol! )

The buttons for the eyes and the yarn for the nose and dress were all bits of leftovers in my stash. The dress uses Classic Elite Wool Bamboo. The pattern was very well written and I especially like how Kay provides detailed instructions for the finishing and placement of all the various pieces. Kennedy loves her new toy and when it isn't in use, the bear sits on Riley's bed.

1 comment:

Acorn to Oak said...

Glad to hear you're finding joy. Your water color painting came out great! And, I love the purple project you're working on. I have no idea what it is but the color is gorgeous! I love going to see/hear live music too. We live near a lot of wineries and love to go from time to time to hear our favorite blues band and others on Friday or Saturday nights. There's something unexplainably different about live music compared to recorded music...magic, I guess. It just makes us feel good and in a different way than a recording. :-)