Friday, February 27, 2009

I am so pooped. Stitches West is amazing. We haven't finished yet. We have a little less than half to go. I am so ready for a nap.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Okay testing the new phone. So far so good.

New Phone!!!!

I got a new phone today. I got the Blackberry Storm. I am hoping that I will be able to learn how to use it quickly. I'll try to take a pic of it tomorrow once we are at Stitches and having fun. If not, once we are at the hotel and settled down for the night, I'll want to take pix of my purchases anyway.

Oh! My phone had full internet on it. Yes, that means my email and everything is on it. My poor thumb is never going to get better. Oh well, all for technology right?

Packing for Stitches West 2009

I have begun to pack for tomorrow. Stacy and I are going to Stitches West in the morning. I am supposed to be at her house at 5:30 in the morning, so I have to be up at 4:45 am so that I can get showered and ready. It has been a very long time since I got up that early in the morning. Its gonna be rough. I'm gonna set the timer on my coffee pot, so I'll have fresh coffee when I'm ready to leave.

I've been trying to get the heel done on my Sad Dragon socks. not quite there. I want to have the heel done before I leave so that way I don't have to worry about working on it at stitches. I know, it sounds silly, but there is a reason for it. I have a very short attention span. I am afraid that if I don't have the heel done, I'll mess it up while I'm there.

On that note, I need to get moving.
This is a test. Blogging via cell phone texting. That way, I can update from my phone from anywhere.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Dragon Tears Socks, yes Sad Dragons

Well, here they are. My socks just before starting the heel. I have since started the heel gusset, so once that is done, I will post another photo. I'm trying to get the heel done this week so that I'll be past the heel at Stitches West 2009!!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Little knitting quiz

Bold for stuff you've done, italics for stuff you plan to do one day, and normal for stuff you're not planning on doing.



Afghan
I-cord

Garter stitch
Knitting with metal wire
Shawl
Stockinet stitch
Socks: top-down
Socks: toe-up
Knitting with camel yarn
Mittens: Cuff-up
Mittens: Tip-down
Hat
Knitting with silk
Moebius band knitting
Participating in a KAL
Sweater
Drop stitch patterns

Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn
Slip stitch patterns

Knitting with bananafiber yarn
Domino knitting (=modular knitting)
Twisted stitch patterns
Knitting with bamboo yarn
Two end knitting
Charity knitting
Knitting with soy yarn
Cardigan
Toy/doll clothing

Knitting with circular needles
Baby items
Knitting with your own handspun yarn
Slippers
Graffitti knitting: knitting items on, or to be left on the street
Continental knitting
Designing knitted garments
Cable stitch patterns
Lace patterns
Publishing a knitting book
Scarf
Teaching a child to knit

Knitting to make money – anyway I tried to.
Button holes
Knitting with alpaca
Fair Isle knitting
Norwegian knitting
Household items: dishcloths, washcloths, tea cosies...
knitting socks- or other small tubular items- on two circulars
Knitting items for a wedding
Olympic knitting
Knitting with someone else's handspun yarn
Knitting with dpns
Holiday related knitting

Teaching a male how to knit
Bobbles
Knitting for a living
Knitting with cotton
Knitting smocking
Dying yarn
Steeks
Knitting art
Fulling/felting
Knitting with wool
Textured knitting
Kitchener BO

Purses/bags
Knitting with beads
Swatching

Long Tail CO

Entrelac Knitting and purling backwards
Machine knitting
Knitting with self-patterning/self-striping/variegating yarn
Stuffed toys

Knitting with cashmere
Darning
JewelryKnitting with synthetic yarn
Writing a pattern
Gloves
Intarsia
Knitting with linen

Knitting for preemies
Tubular CO
Freeform knitting
Short rows
Cuffs/fingerless mitts/armwarmers
Pillows
Knitting a pattern from an online knitting magazine
Rug
Knitting on a loom – never again, the socks would have fit king kong
Thrummed knitting
Knitting a gift
Knitting for pets
Shrug/bolero/poncho
Knitting with dog/cat hair
Hair accessories
Knitting in public

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Say it again

Yes, I'm saying it again... Stitches West 2009!!!!! Yay!!!!! I cannot begin to tell you how excited I am. I know that Stacy is super excited too. This will be her first trip without Kyle and Sean both. Anyway, I think it is. I think she said something about that. Man, my memory and listening skills are down the drain right now.

I don't have Versatility or my Sad Dragon socks done. I wanted them done for Stitches, but it just isn't going to happen. Oh well.

At least I will get to go to Stitches this year. Unlike previous years.

On another note. Jasmin is home and recovering nicely from her surgery. She's been scratching at herself a lot lately, so today she got her first flea and tick collar. She's not happy about it, but she will get over it. I'm hoping that this will also prevent anyone from taking her. The last cat we had spayed vanished two weeks after the fact. She came back for about a day and then was gone. I think someone took her into their home, she got out for a day and then they managed to get her back in again. So, Jasmin is stuck in the house for the next 10 days to make sure she sticks around, and to give her shaved belly a chance to grow back so maybe the neighbors won't take her on us because they can see she's been spayed. Jerks!

And mentioning surgery, Ted's dad is recovering from foot surgery. They cut into one of his toes to reshape it and take off calcium, and another toe they broke it to reset it. He was developing hammer toes. OUCH!! Ted tells me that his dad is bored out of his mind and is stuck sitting in the recliner with nothing to do. Poor guy. I really feel for him, my first knee surgery left me in bed and bored for a long time. It stinks!

Well, I better get moving. I have to go down to our barn and try to find a rubbermaid tote that had a lot of my negatives in it. Joy!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Stitches West 2009!!!

In one week, Stacy and I will be heading off to Stitches West 2009. I am so excited I can almost smell the yarns that I want to see. I can almost feel the yarn in my hands. I can also see a maxed out credit card. Oh well.

In preperation for the trip, I plan to start putting lotion on my hands and arms. I am suffering a bought of dry skin right now and I don't want to be touching yarn with my dry skin.

It looks like I might get my Sad Dragon socks done before Stitches, which would be really cool. That way I could start Ted's socks and have them on the needles while we are at Stitches.

Have I said how excited I am that we are going to Stitches West 2009? Oh... yeah, I guess I did. You see, I really wanted to go to Stitches West 2008, but I couldn't afford it back then at all. I was driving an explorer that only got 14 miles to the gallon and I didn't have a job, so I wouldn't have been able to buy any yarn anyway. So, this year Stitches West 2009 is actually a reality and I'm just so excited.

After Stacy and I get back from Stitches West 2009, I plan to start putting away $55.00 a month for Stitches West 2010. I want to be able to attend the full whammy. You see, Stitches West isn't just about yarn and shopping. There are knitting, crochet, spinning and weaving classes. There is a banquet and a fashion show. I want to do it all. Oh, and those that sign up for classes get to shop at Stitches a day early for a few hours. I have heard the vendors offer special discounts for those that are taking classes at Stitches West. I am a little bummed that Stacy and I could not afford to take classes this year, but maybe next. I know I am going to be planning for it.

So, Stitches West 2009 is really only exciting to those that love yarn and the craft of creating something from string.

Soooo, in honor of Stitches West 2009, I will give an 8x10 print of your choosing from my deviant art gallery to the first person to comment on this blog with the correct number of times I say "Stitches West 2009".

My Deviant art gallery is HERE. If you tell me how many times I've said Stitches West 2009 correctly I will send you a message asking for your mailing address so that I can send you a print.

Stitches West 2009 countdown.... 7 days 6 hours and 41 minutes..... Yay!!!

Where's the Knitting?

I just realized that I haven't been blogging about my knitting lately. It has been more about my photography and personal life. Not that knitting isn't personal. It isn't a business, it is a hobby that I love. Plus, I'm able to give the finished product away as gifts. Mentioning gifts, I need to get started on Ted's socks soon.

I am still working on my Sad Dragon socks. They are coming right along, but because I've had a thumb bothering me for a few weeks, I stopped knitting for a couple days. It feels better today, so I am hoping that I will be able to knit comfortably at our knitting meeting today. I will be bringing my Sad Dragon socks with me. I would like to have them finished soon. Hopefully by the end of next week.

Versatility hasn't been touched much at all since I started it. I feel bad. I wanted it done, but again, my right thumb just didn't want to hold a needle let alone let me knit. Its been ugly.

Maybe I'll work on it tonight after the knit2gether meeting.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Photography Plug

Patricia Graves's Content Producer Page - Associated Content

http://www.associatedcontent.comuser/431523/patricia_graves.html

Jasmin is at the Vet

We took Jasmin to the vet this morning. She is getting spayed. The poor baby. She has been in heat for 4 days now. I thought it was supposed to be 2-3 days.

To top this off.... Spaying and Neutering does not control the feral population.

Okay, maybe I need to clarify that statement. It is not a statement I believe in, but one that the County Animal Shelter believes in.

Again, some clarification. Let me start this story at the beginning.

Several months ago I was walking around the side of our house to feed my horse Asahm. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a small white ball of fluff dart behind our a/c unit. I knew mom was coming out, so I yelled for her to get a towel. She brought out a large beach towel which we were able to toss over the kitten. As mom tried to carry the ball of fluff into the house, she got scratched and bitten. We had caught one of the feral cats that live in our barn. I figure she was the last in a trail of kittens following their mother. When I came around the corner, I figure she was so scared she ran the wrong way.

We put her in the bathtub for the first couple days, she was so small she couldn't get out of it. Once she was bigger, Ted (gotta love Ted) brought a watermelon crate from work to put her in. We all worked with her to tame her. She has been an indoor kitty with daytime outdoor privledges for several months now. A few days ago, she started howling and rubbing her body all over the carpet, us, the walls, and the furniture. She even tried to get my neutered male cat Bubba to help her. Hahaha!!! Anyway....

So, yesterday, we went to the County Animal Shelter to get a coupon from them for $20.00 off the price for spaying a cat. When we got to talking with them, they tell us that spaying and neutering the feral cats does not help. That they have to be euthinized. This sucks. I want to know why they think that.... Well, really, we asked. They said that it is about more than the feral cats. It is about the wildlife populations, and that if you are feeding feral cats, if one of those feral cats bites someone, you are responsible for any medical bills that would come from it. Holy Crappola!

My stepdad feeds about a half a dozen feral cats or more. Each year there is a new litter. The mother cat that dominates the barn, runs off her previous years litter, but some of them try to stick around. Then we get the neighbor's cats coming around, and the neigbor's barn cats coming around. Oh and did I mention that people dump their unwanted cats out, out here?

Now, I'm sure you are wondering why we don't trap these cats and take them to the shelter. Well, three times we have set a trap, three times we have caught animals that were not cats. The first catch wasn't so bad, it was a raccoon. We were able to let him out pretty easily. The next catch, well that was a skunk. Yes, you read that right, we caught a big, mean and very angery skunk. We couldn't get near the trap without him spraying at us. We called animal control, they said let it out, or kill it. It took us a day or two, but we found someone to kill it for us. Just so you know, when skunks are killed, everything in their scent sacs releases when they die. It ruined our metal trap. When we bought a new one, we tried again, this time we set the trap in the barn where my step-dad feeds the cats. Yes, we caught another skunk. This one did not spray and we were able to let him out. No, we haven't tried to catch any of the cats since.

Okay.... I've lost track, what was I really talking about? Oh right, the whole euthanizing thing. I am so against this. If the cats have been spayed or neutered, what is the big deal? You are ending a cylce by preventing more cats, so once the altered cats die, that is the end, there won't be any more. I just can't see killing a cat once it is already there, especially if you are willing to take the time to alter it, feed it and take care of it.

At the shelter they said that Shasta County is having a "huge" stray cat problem, well gee, if it didn't cost so much to get your cat altered, there might not be a problem. So, I don't blame the owners nearly as much as the vets. If it was cheaper to get your cat altered, then maybe people could afford to get them altered. One of the ladies at the shelter even had the nerve to say that the girls need to be fixed before the boys. What the heck!?! I'm sorry, but it is equally important to get them all fixed. If you have a male cat, it is your duty to get him neutered. If he isn't neutered, then he is part of the feral cat problem. When he is outside, he can get to all the unspayed female feral cats. If you ask me, all males should be fixed first. Granted, I plan to get my girls taken care of first so that the neighbor's unaltered cats won't get to them. So, okay maybe I do see their point now. Until everyone gets their cats altered, we are stuck making sure the girls are taken care of first. Okay I get it. Until everyone gets on the wagon to alter their pets, we are stuck spaying the girls first. Although, if everyone altered all their pets, it wouldn't matter which order they were done in, because they would all be altered. Oh for a perfect world where everyone took care of their..... wait, wouldn't everyone take care of their responsability to their pets if it was cheaper?

Okay, that settles it, I blame the vetrinarians for our feral cat population. If they would lower their fees, we'd all get our cats altered and there would not be a problem. I give up and I'm sure you are tired of me rambling on.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Life is Crazy Sometimes

I'm not joking, it really is crazy right now.

1. Someone from my best friend's past turned up and made some nasty comments. I'm not sure how this person found her again. I'm really afraid that she found her via me, but my friend is sure that is not how she did it. I still feel really bad. Its not right that this person has to go out of her way to be mean to my friend.

2. Stacy has purchased a domain name and purchased web hosting with which I will be sharing a part of the cost, so that I can also have my own domain name and site. I'm very excited about this, because it might actually drum up some business for me. I really need to start earning money. Though, with the weather that we are having, I wouldn't be able to do any quality shoots. Dang it!

3. My boyfriend is finally sending signals I can understand. You see, he is not an affectionate man. He doesn't hold hands, doesn't kiss much, nadda. So, when he attempted to show affection Saturday after our Valentines meal, it surprised me a lot. But, because of this, I have a better understanding of some of the things he has said and done lately.

You see, a couple weeks ago, he took me with him to look at houses and seemed to want my opinion. We spoke mostly in terms of "his" house, but every now and then it seemed like he was saying "our" home. I brushed it off, but now I'm not sure. There have been other things that he has said and done that make me wonder.

When we first started hanging out again, we did have a long discussion about what we thought went wrong with our relationship in the past and we came to similar conclusions and ideas. We agreed that some of our problems came from being only children and not being taught to share even when we didn't want to share. We just didn't have to. We also both realized that we each like a certain amount of alone time and in the past, we tended to not leave room for that. Now that we know what we were doing wrong, and both understand that it isn't because we don't love each other, it seems like maybe this time it will work. Now I'm sure you all are asking, does she love this guy, she doesn't talk like she does. Well, to be honest, I've always loved him. I just thought that I couldn't have him and I couldn't understand why. Now I get what was going on.

You see, he was adopted. He has fear of commitment issues. It isn't that he cannot commit, it is that he thinks no one else can. So, no matter how many times I tell him I love him, he thinks that it is only a matter of time before I leave him. To bad we didn't figure this out years ago, maybe we would have stayed together and a few of the things that have happened to me, would not. Hindsight is always 20/20 though.

4. Work has cut my hours down to 4 a week. If that isn't a sign that they want to be rid of me, I don't know what is. Anyway, so I have been applying for other work, but so far I have not been successful. Two of the jobs are still listed, so I don't think they've started interviews yet. I'm hoping they will call this week or next. I would like to start a new job soon, or know that another job is there for me. Then I can quit the one I've got without worries.

So, my life is kinda odd right now. Haven't a clue why, but it is. That's okay though. We learn from diversity right?

Friday, February 13, 2009

Whirligig

Today, as I watched Stacy's son while she was getting a hair cut, I thought of a word that isn't used so often anymore. Whirligig. Now, why do you suppose we don't use that word anymore? I love the way it sounds. Maybe it is because things aren't made with gears and dials anymore. Steam isn't used to power things much either. Maybe too, this is why I am so fascinated with Steam Punk. Not to many people like Steam Punk around here though, so I don't get to see to much of it. Just online.

The new Interweave Press Knits magazine came in the mail today. There are a couple patterns that I'd like to try. We shall see.

I haven't gotten very far in my latest knitting projects. I worked on the socks at the knitting meeting yesterday, but I haven't been working on Versatility. I need to get it done before Stitches. I want to get buttons for it at Stitches. I know, that sounds crazy, but there is going to be a button dealer at Stitches and since I need 16 shank buttons for it, I want to be able to get them there. I am hoping to find something that looks steam punk, but not over the top. And.... there we are, back to whirligig.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Trying to be a photographer is hard business

I have two cites I should share with you all.

http://www.associatedcontent.com/user/431523/patricia_graves.html
This one is kinda weird. They claim to advertise your work and you get paid for a certain amount of clicks/views of your work. So, if you could please pay me a visit over there and look at all the photos, I'd greatly appreciate it.

http://photogirl72.deviantart.com/gallery/
This one is my deviant art account. You can order prints of my work through this cite, but if you email me, I can give you a much better price. The cite gets a huge commission from the sales, so if you want something let me know instead.

On another note, I have been working on my second pair of socks. They are coming along a lot better than the first pair. Once I finish them, I am going to start Ted's new pair. Then once I get Cathy's tracing, I'll start her's. She'll really like the color I got for her.

I've posted a question on ravelry about a scarf called versatility. I'm hoping someone will answer soon. You see, in the pattern, it talks about the main scarf and then to enlarge the end product there is a "panel" that you knit, but the instructions do not tell you how to attach it.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

What the heck?!?!

Well, I'm not sure what the heck is going on. Yesterday I was a happy clam hanging out with Ted. We went and looked at manufactured homes, then we drove up to Shasta Dam to look at the water levels. That was very ugly. The water is scary low. I know people around here are freaking out about where our water is going to come from, but they have all forgotten that we do not own Shasta Lake, we just get to use it for recreation.

We also went to see a friend of the family. Chatted with him for an hour before going to dinner. He paid this time, it was a good dinner, but my tummy was very unhappy. After dinner, we went back to his house and stared at his new fish for a long time. We watched a DVD with his parents called Hancock. I liked it, but I think I would have liked it better in the theater.

Anyway, I got a full day of mixed signals. What is it with me and men who give mixed signals? So, either the full day of the crap, or the rain today has brought me into a bought of depression. I did a quite a bit of crying last night too, so I just don't know what the heck is going on. Maybe it is about to be that time of the month?

I've really had enough of men. I do not mean to say that I am going to switch, but I'm just not looking to be with anyone anymore. I'll just be the crazy cat lady. And the crazy dog lady who knits for everyone even when they don't appreciate it.

Mentioning knitting, I got the toes started on my next pair of socks. I'll take a couple pix today and post them. Ted also let me trace his foot and measure the circumference of his foot as well. I'll be able to knit a better pair of socks for him. Funny, someone who can incite so much confusion in me also gets socks from me. Odd!



Tuesday, February 3, 2009

First Pair of Socks and another

So, I've finished my first pair of socks. Yes, that is them on my feet. Yay! There are some mistakes, all are learning curve mistakes, so the next pair of socks should be just fine.




Mentioning next pair of socks... This is the yarn I will be using. It is from and indy dyer called YarnChef. The colorway is called Dragon's Tears. After these socks, I plan to knit my mom a pair and a few of my friends. So, if you want socks from me, you need to trace your foot, and mark where your ankle bone is. Also, measure the cercumferance of the ball of your foot. That way they won't be to tight around your foot.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Photography vs. Knitting

http://photogirl72.deviantart.com/

Yes, that link up there means that I have started a deviant art account. I am going to try to start getting my name out there. My plan....

1. Take the day tomorrow to photograph things around town.
2. Every day that I do not work at the hotel, I will upload at least one new photo.
3. At least 3 times a week, I will go out and take photos.
4. I will not allow myself to knit unless I have completed above tasks first.
5. I will post to deviant art, before flickr, twitter, plurk, ravelry, or this blog.
6. I will post to deviant art before working on my "Wreck This Journal."


On the knitting note, I am on the rib cuff section of my socks. I am hoping that I can finish them tonight, but I don't know. If I don't finish them today, then I will tomorrow after I go out to take some pix. No, I haven't taken a new pic of the socks, but I will just as soon as I finish them.