Christmas! 🎄 Merry Christmas! 

So Christmas has come and it was a rather good one. Not just because of the gifts, though those were pretty awesome this year, but because we got to see friends, family, and enjoy good food.

We went to my mom’s on Christmas Eve and had dinner with her, and found out she’s basically been hoarding craft supplies from a previous sale at her work for Christmas gifts. Mattie got a $30 gift card, and I got yarn, and a box of miscellaneous craft – related items.

Sunday morning Mattie and I did our gift exchange. He seemed to be pretty happy with what I got him, and he gave me about a zillion books. Knitting, crochet, and coloring.

Later on his dad and brother came over and we sat down to a nice dinner (giant hunk of cow + baked potato + broccoli + cider & pumpkin cheesecake for dessert. We did our gift exchange after dinner and everyone seemed to be happy with what they got. Me? I got an Amazon gift card from Geoff, and his dad got me a baritone ukulele + padded gig bag + method book. Squeeee!

So now it’s time for pictures!

 

Two of the coloring books above I bought for myself but the rest were all from Mattie.

And the best gift of all! I look a mess, but isn’t it pretty?

Not pictured are bobbins for my most recent sewing machine, double pointed knitting needles, and colored pencils. You can kinda see the clip on tuner on the headstock of the uke in the above photo.

One of my gifts, another set of DPNs, never arrived, so Mattie will be contacting Amazon about them sometime today.

I ordered some stuff already with the gift card I received, including a “world’s okayest ukulele player” t-shirt, two more Crochet Lite hooks, a knitting book, a new oven thermometer, a ball of yarn, and a few other items.

Anyway, I hope you had a wonderful holiday weekend! New Years is up next!

Squeeee!

For the first time in my adult life, I am super excited about Christmas! So excited in fact, that I got us a Christmas shrub, and turned the dining room table into Christmasland.

 

Mattie, who claims to hate Christmas, said the tree looked incomplete until I added something to the top. I couldn’t find a small enough topper, so I settled on this big silvery bow and it worked out great! There’s so many gifts around it now and Mattie still hasn’t put all of his out- our little tree is in danger of being buried!

Tuesday night was the High Desert Ukulele Club’s Christmas party, and I took Mattie’s dad with me. He seemed to be having a decent time until people started playing music, then he got angry and left. I let him go- I was there to enjoy fun, music, singing, and socializing with a great group of people and I wasn’t planning on leaving for a few more hours. Even with him leaving early, it was a good night.

Today I took 8 of my music books into Staples to have them cut off the binding and put on a spiral binding. I swear I don’t understand why music books aren’t already marketed with a spiral binding- you are typically using both hands to play your instrument, what hand are you supposed to use to wrangle your pages with in a book that refuses to sit flat?

musicbooks

It was a little more expensive than I had hoped, but they did a good job and I won’t have any more issues with the pages not staying put. Don’t judge me- I honestly don’t even like Star Wars but I like some of the music.

I still have a few more books to have rebound but most of them are done now and if I take new ones in as I get them, it won’t be much of an expense. I might also do this with some of my knitting and crochet pattern books as well.

Tomorrow I am taking Mattie’s dad to pick up some prescriptions, and I think Friday we are seeing his mom for dinner. Monday we will have out last night of pool for this year since Christmas and New Years follow right after that. My mom will be by herself over the holidays. Her boyfriend is going back to Mexico to see his kids, flying out on the 23rd, and he won’t be back until after the 10th of January. We’ll be going to her house though on Christmas Eve, and then hosting Christmas for Mattie’s dad and brother here at the house. Somewhere in there we will also exchange gifts with friends. 🙂

dogsrelaxBefore I go, here’s a photo of the coolest dogs ever relaxing. Yup, that’s how we do it. Belly up, paws reaching all over, goofy facial expression… all while poor old Lucy tries to ignore Sashi’s over-exuberant silliness and general good cheer.

Good night, Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, and I’ll likely see you after Christmas has passed. 🙂

 

Christmas is Coming

So as some of you know, I’m on disability, and I’m basically a broke-ass mother. I set myself at doing all my survey companies’ invites every freaking day and in 2 weeks I’ve collected almost $50 in Amazon gift cards with a few more really close to paying out. I’ve also managed to save about $70 in the last 2 months by having $1 transferred to my savings every time I use my debit card. I apparently do more shopping than I thought I did.

Anyway, I’m trying to do my Christmas shopping way ahead so there’s no “OMG It’s freaking December and what am I going to do?!?” panic. I’ve purchased for my mom and her boyfriend, for Mattie’s brother, and 4 small items for Mattie. I have no idea what to get his dad at all, and Tracy’s gift idea is something I will need to make her but it will only take a few days I think to do provided I can really focus on it. Its something I planned for several months back but no rush on it because its basically a simply just time consuming project. I already have everything I need.

I’m also trying to do my research on getting a cello. I’ve scoped out a few makers and while I’ve found one I am fairly confident about on Amazon (having seen the same model in person), I would much buy from an actual instrument maker or music shop in person. Especially because they are expensive. Basically I am looking at at least $600 for a very beginner’s model. Eek! I’m also reading Craigslist ads and checking other places for uses instruments but I’m not sure where I’m going to find the right one.

It’s Almost Over

Friday the 15th I got in the car with one of my best friends and we drove up to Washington state.  I’ve been hanging out with them in Kent since, with a few small trips around the area.

We haven’t done a lot but we have had fun and its been wonderful to just spend time with Nikki, get to know her husband, and spoil her little dogs rotten. Buddy and Doofers are adorable!

The first few days I drank what is a lot of beer for me, and I’ve consistently drank too much coffee.  We went to a bar where I asked for a stout and the server offered me chardonnay. Fail on her part.

We went and played speed bingo, which I won a few rounds, and we played the slots a bit (I won $59 after Nikki spotted me cash to play – I paid her back what she gave me).

I did some online shopping while I was here, ordering new shelves for my craft room and new yarn that was sale for great prices. The shelves arrived at home today and I expect the yarn to be there early next week.

 

We visited Snoqualmie Falls, which was beautiful, and we ate out a lot. Last night we went to a sushi place where I ate a lot of foods I couldn’t identify but tasted fantastic.

Yesterday we drove into Seattle and visited the Pike Place Market which was cool. I chatted with a few vendors and got to get a few leads on getting help with my ukulele playing from a guy calling himself the Howling Hobbit.

image

We had the best damn clam chowder I’ve ever had and we visited So Much Yarn, which was incredible. It’s a small shop but it’s beautifully arranged and the lady who runs it was fantastic. I only spent $50 there but I left with 7 skeins of beautiful yarn in two types, 3 of one and 4 of the other. The one I got 4 of was on sale for half off so that helped. I nearly bought some $28 a skein silk and merino yarn that felt amazing.

Tonight we visited one more local yarn shop that was highly recommended to me via the Ravelry forums and while I didn’t like this shop quite as much as So Much Yarn, I found the Maker’s Mercantile to be really nice and bought 4 balls of baby alpaca plus a book on crocheting monsters.

image

This beautiful needle felted chair and footstool were in the shop.

Nikki and I also started watching Nurse Jackie and we are trying to finish the show before I fly home tomorrow morning.  We have about one season left that we’re trying to get through tonight.

image

I crocheted an entire blanket while I was here too. It’s not a big blanket but it’s a nice sized throw for cuddling under while watching TV.

I fly out of Seattle tomorrow morning at 720 and while I’m happy to be heading home soon, I’m still having major anxiety about the flight. I’ve never flown before and honestly planes terrify me. I also keep freaking out that they will lose my bags or something.

This has been a great trip though and I’m super glad I did it.

Tomorrow… See Ya!

Tomorrow morning I leave bright and early (okay, dark and early) with Nikki to make the long drive up to Washington state where I will be staying for almost two weeks. We don’t have much planned but mostly I’m looking forward to spending some extended time with one of my best friends. I do have a trip to a yarn shop planned, and I’d like to do a few touristy things, but I’m not too picky what. Then on the 27th, I will fly back home and Mattie will pick me up at the Burbank airport.

I’m more than a little nervous. I’ve never flown before and I’m really, really freaked out by planes. People have compared parts of flying to riding in elevators- I want to clarify that elevators make me want to throw up. It feels like the bottom is suddenly ripped away and its nauseating. My flight will take about 4 hours, including a layover that’s just over an hour, and then I will hopefully be on solid land again and looking for my Mattie to come and fetch me.

2015-12-25 13.25.58The freezer is stocked with lots of meat, and there is frozen and canned veggies, and the dogs have plenty of food. We have lots of eggs, and some yogurt. I think Mattie should be all set for the time I’m gone and if he wants to eat other things, that’s fine too because he will be saving me money.

Anyway, I’m super excited to be going and I’m looking forward to the trip. I’m leaving here tomorrow morning with a project bag full of yarn and I suspect when I come home it will have turned into an entire blanket. And I’m taking my tablet so I can get lots of reading done. Nikki will have to work so I need to amuse myself a bit while she’s gone, but I can do that.

We’ve also decided that Mr. Bubblegum Monster Penis would like to travel with us! Maybe we can get some photos of him seeing the sights. 🙂

Happy New Year (& Merry Christmas Too!)

I haven’t posted since around Thanksgiving. The holidays went by in a bit of a blur, but they were overall pretty good. Thanksgiving me did twice (once here with Mattie’s dad and brother, and once with my mom and her boyfriend) and then Mattie’s mom came into town around the same time. There was much gift exchanging over Christmas, and I can finally share my mom’s gift I made for her.

 

This is the blanket I spent about 4 months working on for her and finally finished just a few weeks before Christmas. Its on her King sized bed, and that’s Mildred the cat claiming it as her own. Millie was supposed to be my cat but I left her with my mom when I moved in with Mattie because Lucy is not cat-safe.

These are the details of what went into that blanket. A shitload of yarn. Almost 6,500 yards of it. Thankfully a lot of that yarn (about 5 or 6 of the 17.7 skeins) were given to me so it kept the price down.

2015-12-25 05.45.37

My mom got me a ton of yarn- yay! She has been listening when I mentioned some of my favorite yarns and the ones I use a lot of. Sashi approves!

2015-12-24 22.30.00

I crocheted what seems like a ton of scarves, 3 of which I sold (or rather I hope I sold- still waiting for payment on two of them) and I did some fun other projects. This is my bubblegum monster penis, and its about 19″ from tip to bottom of the low hanging ball. Its monstrous and I’d run away if anyone came at me with one that big! LOL

2015-12-25 13.25.58

I also pulled out an older project and added a border to it so it looks more finished. This really made a big difference and it looks so much better! I’m torn between gifting this one or adding it to my shop.

2015-12-26 22.50.32

The pattern design for the Mickey heads and surrounding stitches belong to my friend Kate. She’s fantastic at crocheting up all sorts of things, and used to run a small business making stuffed animals from crochet.

I’m also working on a knitting project that has a ton of firsts for me. I’ve run into one hitch on it but with some help from folks on the Ravelry boards I sorted it out, and hopefully in a few days I’ll be finished with it and can share it.

New Year’s Eve was spent grocery shopping, baking cookies (which I burned half of them), and toasting champagne as the new year came in. I’m finishing my third glass of champagne now and then I’m off to bed.

I hope you all had a great set of holidays and I wish you happiness in the coming year!

Life Goals (Well, A Goal Anyway)

I’ve been doing some research and have decided that some time next year I would like to visit one of my closest friends who lives in Washington. Of course that costs money and I won’t be able to save enough to get there on my own until July. To help raise the money to visit my pretty lady, I’m offering 18% off of everything in my shop, including sale items. Everything. Just click on through to http://kittyloafdesigns.com and use coupon code CATOWASH at checkout. Easy peasy!

I’m also doing the logical thing and begging for Christmas money instead of gifts to hopefully get the money together faster because I really don’t want to have to wait until July! Below are just a few of my makes you can buy in my shop.

Busy Busy Busy!

Yesterday I took Mattie’s dad to run some errands in the afternoon. It was pretty uneventful though we did have an amusing conversation about handicapped parking. He wasn’t ready to go home yet and I wanted to pop by Michael’s for some black embroidery floss, but since he was tired, he opted to wait in the car. I parked in a semi – shady spot and he pointed out the handicapped parking on the other side. This is basically how our conversation went. I might have had to stifle a giggle.

“are you coming in?”
“no but the handicapped parking is over there.”
“but there’s shade here.”
“but I really wanted to use my placard!”

After we finished with his errands I dropped him off and came home to work on my cross stitch project I’m about half done with and to find my package from Joann’s was finally delivered and I got my opal clay and my yarn to finish my triangle scarf I’m crocheting.

I finished my triangle scarf Wednesday afternoon, after adding lots of fringe to it, and using all but about 30″ of the second skein of yarn. I love when I project uses up basically everything! The colors are much more vibrant in real life; this is just a crappy phone picture.

trianglescraft

I’m really pleased with it.

I did some more on my cross stitch I’m working on, then made plans to take Mattie’s dad to do the things we didn’t get done yesterday and for Mattie to meet us for dinner. I got home around 730pm and did a little Christmas shopping (I know, its so early but I have money now so did a bit of it) and then we watched some TV when he got home.

Now of course its the middle of the night and I can’t sleep so I’m finishing this blog post and going to work on some other crochet until I get tired. Tomorrow I need to water the plants and take out the recycling as well as finish the dishes. Normal stuff, I just don’t want to do any of it! LOL

Lazy Day

doggies

Our dogs in this photo pretty much personify how my day has gone so far. I took some photos of them, I vacuumed (they are shedding so much hair right now I feel like the house is actually growing its own hair too), I read a lot of random blog posts and commented on most of them, and I thought a lot about working on my current crochet project. I also thought about starting a cross stitch project which I want to do for Mattie’s nerd cave, and I got tired of Sashi begging all day long for treats, snacks, and handouts. We never hand feed our dogs anything but all day today she has begged as if its a regular occurrence. Nope. Not happening dog. That’s her hopeful “please give me all the things” face, BTW.

lucy

I did practice my ukulele some this afternoon though and will hopefully practice it again this evening before bed. Tomorrow I will check my finances again and see about calling a local music store to get in for a lesson this week if I can. I’m trying a different strumming method than I had been using and while it’s a bit slow to sink in (I’ve been using the other method for 3 whole weeks- an eternity! LOL), I think I’m getting it and it does sound fuller and louder. I also feel like I’m hitting all the strings better as well.

Tomorrow I’ll be taking Mattie’s dad around for a few errands in the afternoon, and then we’ve got pool in the evening. The season is almost over and pretty soon we’ll be getting our payouts for our wins. I don’t have as many wins as I had hoped to have this season but I’ll take what I’ve got!

We finally caught the mouse that was in the bedroom, though I’m not quite sure when. It was starting to get a little stinky when we remembered to check the mousetrap today and of course Sashi is obsessed with the idea of getting into the trashcan to get the nasty old thing. I swear the worse something smells the more that dog wants it. Yuck! I reset the trap in case he had a friend hanging around but I really think there was just the one.

I’m also feeling almost back to normal. I haven’t sneezed in two days and while I’m still blowing my nose, its been like once every few hours and not once every fifteen minutes. Tonight I’m hoping to finish my current book and maybe start another one before I knock out for the night, but don’t want to be up too late as tomorrow will be a busy day.