30 November 2011

WIP Wednesday


I haven't felt like blogging lately.  It's all a bit too hard sometimes, isn't it?

But there has been crochet, there has been knitting and there has been reading and listening to some very good books.  So now I can't put off sharing anymore!

I finally got around to putting some of my summer garden granny squares together.  And by putting together, I mean making some new squares to join up the completed squares using the 'join as you go' method.  I made a bunch of these squares in a flurry of excitement way back when I first taught myself to crochet A YEAR AGO.  Then I got bored and they went into hibernation. 

I'm fairly certain my tension has changed, can you see the wobbly edges of my first block in the bottom right there?  Oh well, hopefully in the scheme of the entire blanket it will all be ok.  Whatev!

What are granny squares for other than tormenting your cat?
I am also very near completion on my Different Lines.  I still have ends to weave in and it needs to be blocked, so it is still technically a WIP.  It's lovely and squishy, but it came out wayyyy smaller than it's supposed to be.  I used 8ply rather than 4ply, so that's probably part of my problem.  I thought using a heavier weight yarn and larger needles would give me a larger item though?  Hmm a lot to learn I have. 

Still, it's my first ever knit!  Very proud of myself indeed!  Here are some crappy evening pictures.

I finished Pratchett's latest book, Snuff, in what seemed the blink of an eye. It was AWESOME!  Here is a wonderful review, which puts my sentiments across more eloqunetly than I ever could! 

If you have frequented my Wednesday posts of late you will know I've had a bit of a love affair with the Skulduggery Pleasant books.  And they are lovely: good storeys, good characters.  But Mr Pratchett, oh I apologise for putting you out of my mind for so long!  Sure, Derek Landy is a decent writer, but Terry Pratchett blows him out of the water, he is a Master.  His books are so clever.  Awesomely snappy diaglogue, very witty and supremely loveable characters, and you pick up something different every time you read them.  It am amazed, if also saddened, that Pratchett can still deliver such material considering his battle with Alheimer's.

Snuff is a Vimes (or to use his full name and title... His Grace, His Excellency, The Duke of Ankh, Commaner Sir Samuel Vimes..Blackboard Monitor) / City Watch book, my favourite Discworld storyline, so I was more than pleased.   So pleased in fact, that I have decided to go back to the very beginning of the Watch and re-live all of it in lovely audio book glory.  I have set myself the CITY WATCH AUDIO BOOK CHALLENGE!  Which really just involves listening to all the City Watch books in order.  :D

Guards Guards is up first.  I've read this one at least 3 times, and now I get to listen to it.  It is read by Nigel Planer, who has even done one of the voices as Neil from the Young Ones!  Though, his Vimes sounds like he has a cold.  I love the start of Vimes' relationship with Lady Ramkin, and the introduction of Carrot, the banter between Colon and Nobby, the dragons, and the tongue in cheek jokes about what you are supposed to expect with royalty and kings.   Love this book, one of my all time faves. 

The City Watch Audio Book Challenge.  Progress:  Book 1 - Guards Guards
If you don't have any Pratchett in your life, ye gods what is wrong with you?  Remedy that immediately!!

More WIPs over at Tami's Amis, and Yarn along with Ginny at Small Things.

13 November 2011

My christmas paraphernalia is better than yours

I don't actually love christmas a whole bunch, mostly because family gatherings stress me out.  And it's all so materialistic.  And I don't really do presents except for the littlies, and the other half, because he likes stuff a lot.

But there are some things I like.  Like the food and the stuff.  Christmas stuff can be very cool.  I like to decorate the place to look christmassy, you know, with sparkles.  I like christmas crackers.  I recently picked up some cool stuff that I had to show off.

Number one, probably the best christmas toy you will ever see.  The reasons why this is better than anything you own are:
  1. It has legs.
  2. It has no face.
  3. You press the button and it walks around to music.
  4. The music it walks around to is Yakety Sax (better known as the crazy running around music from BENNY HILL!!). 
  5. It actually pauses in time with the music. 
Watch this video.  It will be the best 29 seconds of your day, guaranteed. 

I can't even begin to describe the reasons why I love this item. It's a plushie.  It has legs BUT NO FACE!  BENNY HILL MUSIC!!  To whomever came up with this astoundingly christmassy concept, I salute you sir, you have my lifelong respect.

Oh hai, Merry Christmas!
Freddo advent calendar.  These things are extremely hard to find, and I am super happy that I managed to pick one up this year.  It matters not that you can buy a packet of 20 assorted freddos for under $5, while Cadbury sell this little sucker for $14.  I bought this baby for my office.  So in December I will get a lovely little chocolate treat every afternoon (and two on Mondays and Fridays!), while I merrily count down to Christmas.  Take me for a ride any day.
nom nom nom
My newest christmas tree ornament.  Who else grew up watching the awesome stop-motion classic Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer?  My favorite part of christmas was getting to watch all of the awesome Rankin/Bass christmas shows.  Rudolph was my favorite.  One of this year's Hallmark Keepsake ornaments was this cutie.  Absolutely couldn't resist.

As an aside, how hilarious are Hallmark Keepsakes?  Who out there has the Wicked Witch of the West, Darth Vader, the Two Mousekateers or Indiana Jones on their tree?  Don't get me wrong, I love Spiderman, Darth Vader, Tom and Jerry and Harrison Ford as much as the next person... but on your christmas tree?  Hmmm that being said, this is adorable!!
na na na na na na christmas!!!
I generally don't like to spend money on myself.  I will ummmm and aaaahhhh about spending $20 on a top for myself, but I will impulse buy a $20 tree ornament without a moment's thought.  What is wrong with me! 

Just getting into the christmas spirit I suppose....

(I found a much better way to keep track of stuff I like, and that I like to share.   PINTEREST!  Ok, not new, but very neat (and addictive).  If you need an invite let me know!)

09 November 2011

WIP Wednesday, and coming full circle

I don't participate in WIP Wednesday all that often because I frankly don't make much P by every Wednesday. 

Although, I do like looking back to see my projects grow.  I even feel quite chuffed with myself.

These last few weeks, I have had only small amounts of quality time with my yarn.  Usually about 30 minutes during the morning commute, and a bit on the weekends.  That being said, here's my latest.

CrochetStepping Stones Cardi
Totally mindless crochet.  I'm about 1.5 balls in (keeing in mind that the bwm yarn I am using comes in 200g balls).  I totally thought it was going to be too big and was dreading the prospect of frogging 484 metres of work... but when you get to the bit where you divide the work for the arm holes, it magically becomes the right size.  The armholes still seem a bit wide at the moment, but I reserve my final judgment until completion.

Black is so hard to photograph.  You get the gist though.
KnittingDifferent Lines I think I've made good progress with this project.  I've taught myself continental style, which I'm finding tons easier.  I now feel like I have control, whereas before all those loops were much more unruly.  How ugly are the back of colour changes though?  Ugh.  I am starting to run out of space on my circulars, so will have to wait until the longer set I have ordered in the mail get to me. I'm hoping I have enough yarn.  I'm making this in 8ply rather than the 4ply specified in the pattern.  I'm interested to see how this will effect the overall size of the piece, this being my first proper knitting project (because the evil scarf doesnt count).

garter garter garter
 Yarn Along
In one of my first posts when I began participating in yarn along, I was reading the 6th Skulduggery Pleasant book.  Then I went back to the start of the series and listened to the audio books all the previous books in the series.  So by coming full circle, I mean that as at today I have finished listening to Death Bringer.  It was read by a different person again which is super annoying.  Though it was nice to re-experience all 6 books in quick succession.  My mind is like a sieve, and I forget half of the things that happen in a book as soon as I put it down.  All I am generally left with is a vague impression of whether I liked it or not.  So, re-reading all these books has been like reading them for the first time! 
The sparrow flies south for the winter.
My favorite thing about this book is the banter between Skulduggery and Valkyrie.  And the dialogue throughout the whole thing is so engaging.  There are a couple of scenes which are just so cute and sweet.  When you read these books, you can really picture how the movie would look.  However, as much as I'd love to see these awesome characters on the big screen, I'm quite sure they'd get it wrong. 

And for your enjoyment, a few of my favorite quotes from this installment:
  • Skulduggery: For future reference this is my serious face. (It's funny because he has no face!  LOL)
  • Skulduggery: Are you in awe of me?
  • Skulduggery (about Valkyrie): My loyal and trustworthy combat accessory
  • Skulduggery: I cross the place where my heart use to be and hope to be deader than I already am.
  • Skulduggery: Look at the face I don't have and tell me if it looks like I care.  (Again, he has no face!!)
  • Gordon Edgley: ...a riddle wrapped in an enigma wrapped in a cardigan.
  • Skulduggery: Embrace your inner lunatic, fun times guaranteed.
So now that I am done re-reading (or listening to) SP, I am moving on.  Look what I found over the weekend! 

SQUEEEEEE!! (Alongside my failed attempt at taking a pretty yarn-along picture!)
I feel like a bad bad Pratchett fan though... I didn't even know when this baby was coming out!  It was only because I was having a browse through the bookstore (one of the very few left...) for something else... and it was my boyfriend who spied it!  My boyfriend who doesn't even like to read... at least he knows how much I love Pratchett.  And it's a Vimes book!  My favorite character!  Can't wait for the train ride home to crack this puppy open!!

As per usual, more WIPs at Tami's Amis and Yarn Along at Small Things.