The Musings of One Miss Julie

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Nothing Much

I've been spending a lot of time in my Green Room of late because it's the one place in the house that is unadulterated by the return of the renovation bric-a-brac. Since I'm getting so close to completing my Booga bag, last night I pulled my yarn stash out of the closet looking for next-project inspiration.

I think the lucky winner is a couple of balls of chartreuse Austermann Acapella, a wispy kid mohair blend, that is going to become either the Branching Out scarf from Knitty or a gossamer wrap from Beyond Wool.

One other thing: My friend added photos of her little guy wearing the sweater I made for him to her blog. And I worried about the sweater being too small.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Warning: Home Repairs Can Be Hazardous to Your Health

Here's my take on home renovations: The results are fantastic and -- hopefully -- create peace, but in the meantime you'd better be prepared to face an emotional wasteland. Surprise, this ain't a cheery post.

Scott and I, with huge help from our dads, ripped out the floor in our kitchen, our entry hall, and the side hall on Sunday. We thought we were going to have our much-anticipated new floor installed today. Think again. After the installers left this morning, breaking the hard news that our floor is so warped and unlevel that we can't put down the flooring we chose, it's as though all we really heard was the sound it makes when someone touches the tweezers to the side of the funny bone compartment in the game of Operation -- incessantly. Or if that grating sound is unfamiliar to you, maybe you know the wah-wah buzzer from The Price Is Right game show, which is often accompanied by a big fat red X across the TV screen.

Back to the drawing board and the dread of having to go out shopping together again to find something we both mostly like and that will cooperate with our uncooperative floor.

Until such a time, we're stuck with a grimy-dirty, splinter-ridden, gotta-wear-shoes-on-it wood subfloor. And did I mention our stove is in the living room? Our kitchen table and chairs is in the family room? The kitchen counter's covered in a measurably thick amount of dust?

Yes, I would like some cheese with my whine.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Ode to Buttons

With nothing very photo-worthy going on with any of my craft projects or my recent gardening exploits, I dug into the button box tonight looking for inspiration.

Most of the buttons I have came from my grandmas and were ones I'd played with as a girl. Now I keep the buttons tucked away in a drawer with my other sewing accoutrement waiting for that far-off day when I'll either a) find the time to use them, b) remember that I have them to use them, or c) find the perfect project to slap them on. Alas, I suppose those are the woes of a stasher.

I love the two giant green-ish zebra-print buttons down front. Wouldn't those look stunning on the collar of a dramatic wool swing coat or cape? Sigh.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

One Ball Down

Here's how the Booga bag is coming along. I'm about half-way up the sides now and I'm still loving, loving, loving that Kureyon!

Thursday, June 16, 2005

A Lovely Surprise

Today a friend of mine at work arrived at my office bearing gifts. She's told me all about her in-laws' travels throughout India, Thailand, and other Asian destinations and has mentioned several times all the wonderful gifts she's received from their time abroad.

Today she shared some of her treasures with me. Apparently, she has bins and bins of textiles and other bric-a-brac that she either doesn't have the space for or realizes she'll never use. (I can't imagine the strength it must have required to come to such a realization.) Here I share with you some of what she gave me.

From left to right: a fantastic cotton table cloth, complete with bead fringe on the corners; a gorgeous square cotton scarf from India; a long rectangular silky-cotton blend scarf, with self-fabric fringe; and a stunning curtain-type piece, complete with a casing. I think I'm going to finish the one raw edge of the the curtain and use it as a wall hanging in my office at work until I can begin and finish the quilt wall hanging I'm scheming about.

In any case, this was a touching gift today. My friend also told me she plans to have a yard sale on Saturday offering up some more of these types of items. I'm there!

Sunday, June 12, 2005

We Made It

The house may not be photo-shoot ready, but it's certainly much improved. All the tools and other renovation effluvia are back in the basement where they belong instead of occupuying every available space throughout the house.

We even finished the bathroom. We held first-flush ceremonies on Friday night, and it was lovely. Even my dad, who participated via speaker phone, was impressed. Never has a toilet sounded so lovely.

Our friends arrived safely last night, so we're off to our cottage on Lake Huron for a few days. It's going to be just fabulous! And I'll get to visit Lamby Locks, my favorite little yarn shop up there, where I may have to succumb to some of the owner's beautiful hand-spun, hand-dyed gems.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

So Much To Do

We've got chums coming in to visit us from Syracuse this weekend and we couldn't be more delighted. We also couldn't be more foolish: We're trying to accomplish three years' worth of home repairs in the span of one week. We've already had to pare back our list, but I know more tasks are going to get cut as Saturday draws nearer.

Since this blog is about keeping it real, I post a picture of my Green Room, which also happens to be where my friends will be staying this weekend. (What do you think, Marth? And sis, if you're reading, has your pulse steadied yet?)

I hope I don't need to assure my gentle readers that the rest of my house does not look like this. I also realize I will have to post a follow-up photo to redeem myself.

We really ought to have guests stay in that room more often. That way, I could actually use my room as the studio I always dreamed it would be instead of a slapdash repository for everything I don't have a place for.

But I can't end on that downer. I also show a detail of my freshly painted bathroom wall, with the chair rail I had so much fun choosing. You'll have to use your imaginations a bit: the colors are a bit more periwinkle and the nail will be tapped in and spackled.

The room is just gorgeous and serene. And once the plumber comes tomorrow and installs our new pedestal sink, we'll be almost finished. It's going to be so great to see the dream I've had for the last two-and-a-half years be a reality. Plus it feels great to get that brand-new sink and toilet and other bathroom hardware out of the basement, where it's been mouldering away waiting for me to stop procrastinating. In any case, I'll post another picture of the wall later after I've had a chance to sponge the darker blue half with the lovely irridescent glaze I picked out.

Only four days left to get it all finished!

Friday, June 03, 2005

Heaven... I'm in Heaven

I couldn't resist. When I should have been cleaning and painting and doing any other of the myriad house projects we need to complete before our friends come in next weekend, I cast on for the Booga Bag. It seems like everyone else in knitting blogland has made one of these, and now I'm jumping onboard. I've finished the bottom already. What a difference size 10½ needles make compared to those 2s and 3s I've been using.

Let me also just say that as many times as I've admired Noro Kureyon objects on others' blogs, I couldn't truly understand its beauty until I'd felt the strands of wool slip through my own fingers. The color! Truly inspired, and truly divine.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Out-the-Door Prices

Check out what I saw while visiting today. Except for cropping, this is an unedited image:

Uh-huh, it seems to me like it would be adding insult to injury to charge so much for the materials to make such a bag. I mean, I know it could carry everything, but if you had that much money, wouldn't you just pay someone to carry everything for you instead of making a bag so you could carry it all yourself? Really now.

I gave the wee sweater to my chum today. I think she was quite pleased. Now that I've finished it, I feel so free and easy about what I'll work on next that there's almost an equal sort of anxiety about that! But I'm going to bask in it for a bit yet.