Instax #7

For my 7th picture in my 52 Instax in 52 Weeks project I decided to show you my obsession with lists!

You can't read the lists in the picture (which I'm happy about - specifically because two of them show my budget for last and this month). You can see my little notebook that I keep in my purse and make daily to do lists, lists of things I want to make, need to buy, etc. It's opened to the list of Jeremy's birthday presents and his birthday breakfast I plan to make. You can also see here a big notebook. I use that for my weekly to do lists, craft to do lists, etc. That stays at home on my dresser. There's also my budgets somewhere in there and my list of meals for the week. I think my list of Granny Squares is in there too.

I'm a lunatic about lists! If I don't write things down, I have a really hard time thinking about anything else. I learned this when I was younger. I have a ton of journals (16 to be exact) from the age of 17-23ish I would write almost every day. I learned that it really helped my stress and depression. I was able to reflect on things and really figure out who I am and why I think and act the way I do. Over time I stopped writing. It was about the time that I started crafting again. Crafting has become completely therapeutic for me and does the same thing writing once did. It helps me calm my brain, lowers my stress and just lets me focus and think things out. However, I still need LISTS!! If I don't write things down, I get very overwhelmed and worry that I will forget something. So I write it down. Plus, there's nothing quite like the feeling you get after you check something off your to do list!

Do you make lists?!



Evil by Request

My friend, Kara at work requested that I make her an "evil animal". It's not often that I get to make gorey, evil things. Pretty much only for myself and Jeremy. It was nice to be able to make something totally creepy for someone new!
I racked my brain for a while trying to figure out what to make. I had saved this pattern of a severed finger that I found ages ago on Ravelry. So I thought, "Ooo a little animal eating a finger!" I searched some more on Ravelry and came across this Robbie the Rabbit pattern. I am not a gamer in the slightest so I have no idea what Silent Hill is or what this rabbit has to do with a video game...however, he was exactly what I was looking for! This pattern is an extension pack to the Creepy Cute Crochet book. I ran right to the library and picked it up. I decided to alter the bunny pattern a bit. Obviously he's a different color, I also added feet, a tail and made his face not so happy but more angry looking.
I also ended up changing the entire finger pattern because it turned out WAY too big for this lil' bunny.
I am sooo in love with the face made from clay! It was a lot easier to work with than I had anticipated and it just looks so great! I definitely think in the future that I will be making faces more with polymer clay.
So without further adieu...here is Bubba Bunny.

Bubba lives in the mountains of Pennsyvania. (queue that creepy banjo music)
As you can see, his favorite treat is not a carrot. He prefers to gnaw on the fingers and toes of hikers who get stranded and sometimes "disappear" from the Appalachian trail.
I decided on this story while watching "Into the Wild" last night. Muahahaa!
I had a ridiculous amount of fun making Bubba. There were just so many elements used to put him together besides just crocheting. Clay, felt, paint...so awesome!



Book Review: Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

I finally finished "Fear & Loathing" Wednesday night. I thought maybe I'd give a little review in case anyone was interested in reading it.

First off, I've seen the movie a few times. I hate reading a book AFTER I've seen the movie because the whole time I am imagining the actors and scenery from the movie instead of creating my own in my head based on the author's descriptions.
With that said, the movie was so incredibly much like the book Which says a lot for the people who made the movie, they kept true to the book.
I liked it a lot. Mostly because the mayhem Hunter and his attorney get into is so incredibly ridiculous and drug induced, I kept turning pages to see what the hell they would get into next! I love the style of his writing as well, it's just like as if he were talking to you and telling you the story. No censoring, no bullshit, just straight facts of the situation. The whole time I kept thinking that I would have passed out or ODed if I did the amount of drugs and drinking they were. There were also some crazy illustrations throughout the book that I love. Very creepy but awesome at the same time.
I definitely recommend the book.
Plus there were two other short stories at the end. One about a Chicano in CA who was killed by cops in the 70's and the conspiracy that surrounded it. Also a true story. That was a good read because it was COMPLETELY different than Fear & Loathing yet Thompson's Gonzo reporting is very evident. It's just an entirely different and sad story.
The second was about him covering the Kentucky Derby, that was mostly just funny. Old southern men, drunk and horses. How could it not be funny?!
I've had the Gonzo book for a few years and never read it. I bought it for an ex whose mother also bought it for him so I just took my copy back and never returned it. I might really read it now!

Anyone else read Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas? What were your thoughts?



Amazing Find!

So Jeremy's birthday is on the 27th and I already knew mostly what I was getting him. Earrings, a tshirt and making him something small. I didn't feel it was enough though. I mean for crying outloud, the kid gave me a car for my birthday this year! I've been in a bit of a crafting funk (I've been working a lot so when I get home I just want to lay down and do nothing.) and couldn't come up with anything awesome. Plus I make him SO MUCH as it is, he could probably use a break.

I decided I would look on etsy for something to get him. I searched for 'zombie' and found Off Her Rocker Art. I don't know how I never came across this shop before but I am STOKED!

Jenny will take pictures of either one person or a couple and zombify you onto a clock made from a record or just on a piece of wood or canvas. I am so freaking happy I found her shop!! There are some other equally awesome hand painted clocks but these custom zombies of Jeremy and I are going to be AMAZING!

He won't get it til after his birthday because she needs at least 2 weeks and I do not want to rush her in anyway. I asked him if he would mind and he said not at all, I explained that it will be well worth the way.
I will of course show you guys the awesomeness when it arrives but I just had to let you know about it now because I am so excited!



Instax # 6

Number 6 in my 52 Photos in 52 Weeks project was so unexpected, I just had to take a picture of it! As I said yesterday, I'm not into the whole Valentine's Day thing really. Last night I made dinner for Jeremy and when he came over he had brought me a box of chocolates and a card. In the 2 1/2 years we've been together this is the first card he has ever gotten me! This is the 3rd Valentine's Day we've been together and this is the first time he ever even acknowledged the day, let alone give me chocolates! I was completely surprised. After I read the card, I actually started laughing at the thought of him in the card section of Walmart, crammed in with the other men, reading love cards and trying to pick one out for me. I was even more surprised that it wasn't a funny card. I've given him quite a few cards over the years and they're always funny, never sentimental. Even though I know he didn't write the words in this card, they were really sweet and actually made a lot of sense for us.
We ate a lovely dinner and watched War of the Worlds, it was a wonderful Valentine's Day!

I hope you had a great day too!



Happy Valentine's Day!

I'm not much for romantic, Valentine's Day, commercial, forced mush. Never have been. Tonight I will be making a lovely dinner for Jeremy and I and we are watching a movie together.
Saturday night he and I had a wonderful date night. Date night is something he has started insisting on. I have no idea why or where it came from but I must say, it's pretty awesome. We ordered in and then went bowling. I seriously felt like we were on a second or third date, we had so much fun together. Not that we don't always have fun together but sometimes just being silly with the one you love is all you need. He stayed over and Sunday morning I made breakfast, we laid around watching Family Guy til after noon and then he went home.

I had started this cross stitch on the plane home from Vegas. I finished the birds a few days after I got home. I really wanted to add something more to it but couldn't think of anything. After such a lovey dovey weekend and Valentine's Day approaching, I decided that what these birds needed was a little more love! I looked through a different cross stitch book I checked out of the library a week or so ago. I found a heart/flower motif, altered it a bit and BAM...total Valentine's Day project!

These are the books I used.

I hope you have a wonderful Valentine's Day!



New Endeavor...

So like a lot of people out in blogland (well at least the people I pay attention to...the cool crafty people!) it would be a dream to share my crafts with the world. I would love to have my own little business just selling my "wares" as Liz puts it. This is something I have been tossing back and forth in my brain for quite sometime. I happen to have the most supportive boyfriend, family, and friends who constantly tell me that I need to do it too.
Over the last few months a lot of things have been happening at my job and the end result is we are all being laid off by June. I have very mixed feelings about it. I have a lot of opportunity to grow with this company if I stay (we can move to another division possibly) but I would be doing things I just happen to be good at but don't particularly like (computer systems).
So A. I could stay and end up making pretty good money but be miserable because I would be staring at a computer and sitting on my ass all day.
Or B. Leave and have no idea what the hell could happen!
I'm not exactly in the position at this point in my life to not have a stable job and steady income because I live on my own and have lots o' bills.

I have been thinking that I should just try anyway, my Aunt actually put them most perfect quote on her facebook last night that really made me realize I have to just DO IT!

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." - Mark Twain

I've only got this one life. If I don't at least try I will always think "What if I had?"
My mother is actually going through the same thing right now too. My parents both worked on a horse farm training the horses when they met. After I came along, Dad had to get "a real job" and Mom stayed home. My whole childhood and teen years I would hear my Mom say things like "I was so happy training horses." "I wish I could go back to training horses." and things like that. Well she has an amazing opportunity right now to move to Arizona and work on a dude ranch where people go for vacation and be one of the wranglers/leaders. She's has gone the last 2 years and the last 2 years the owners have offered her a job. She obviously has reserves about doing it, mostly because she will be so far from us.
All I keep telling her is that she has to do it. My sister and I are grown, we can come visit! Even if she only does it for one year or five years, she will at least have done it and not regret it. My sister and my Mom's sisters have all been encouraging her to do it too. Opportunites don't always present themselves so blatantly in your face, let alone twice!

After thinking about it so much, I realized I need to take my own advice too!
So with that said, I have been doing a lot of research and still feel really unsure about the whole thing. Mostly just the ACTUAL doing it. Like what's the best way to go about this or that, etc.
Kaelah over on Little Chief Honeybee did a post on Thursday with books that help people in just this situtation which was pretty awesome in itself. A comment was left by one of her readers suggesting the Indie Business Class. I immediately looked it up and couldn't believe how much it is exactly what I need!!
I talked about it with Jeremy for a while. He of course did nothing but encourage me and make me feel like I'm not a fool for wanting to do this so...I signed up!!
I'm so damn nervous and anxious!!
It starts March 1, there are still spots left (it doesn't say there aren't anyway) so if this is something you are interested in, I think you should go check it out.
I plan on keeping you guys up to date on my progress, thoughts and what not through this adventure.

On to the next chapter I suppose, right?



More Granny Squares!

I have to say, I am pretty proud of myself for making so many of these squares already, I finished 12 more for a total of 36! I'm almost half way to the 88 I'll need altogether for my Granny Square Afghan.
There something so gratifying about setting a goal and really working toward achiveing it!
As you may or may not know, making myself an afghan is one of my 2011 Craft Goals.
You can see the first 12 I made here.
And the second 12 are here.

Here are some shots of these beautys!

Have any of you made resolutions or goals for the year? How are you doing on them?




Drop Everything And Read. Did you have that or something similar in your school?!

So you may or may not have noticed that I added a little GoodReads widget over on the left side of my blog. With all this talk of Book Club, I decided I would share a little bit about what we read and what I have been reading on my own. I still need to add a bunch of stuff to that GoodReads list which I will do over time.

I've always been a pretty avid reader, even as a kid. I was very forunate to have parents that read to us all the time and I am certain that is one of the reasons I love books. I remember in elementary school we had an assignment to pick a trait from our parents that we hoped to have when we grew up. I don't remember what I told my Dad but I do remember telling my Mom that I hoped I would always read as much as her. The quintessential image I have of my Mother is her cozied up on the couch with a mug of tea and a book.
We used to live very close to the library when I was little and I remember walking up there all the time with my Mom and being able to take home 3 books each and it was always SO hard for me to decide. I also remember all the popular girls reading The Babysitters Club in elementary school. I tried reading one (in hopes of becoming cool) and I just didn't get the appeal and gave up. At some point I became obsessed with R.L. Stein's Goosebumps. I would hide under my covers with a flashlight and read into the wee hours of the night. Then I would get in trouble every morning for not being able to wake up for school. =P
In high school I started reading a lot of Anne Rice, Poppy Z. Brite (both the main reason for my love of NOLA), old beatnik stuff, poetry, anything I could get my hands on really!
Over the last year or so I have completely been slacking on my reading. Since Book Club started I would always read one book for myself and whatever the Book Club book was each month. I don't even remember the last Book Club book I finished...Shameful!

So since this blog has given me so much motivation to keep up with my crafts and finish what I start, I am hoping it will do the same for my reading.
At the moment, I am determined to finish last months Book Club book which is Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (yes total theme to go with our trip). Then I will start our next book so I have it finished in time for the meeting I'm hosting and after that I will start a book of my own!

Print by MarianneLoMonaco.

What is your favorite book? Do you have just one or do you have a few?!
My favorite Book Club book was Shadow of the Wind by Carols Ruiz Zafon. I've made at least 5 other people read it who all loved it too!

Also, Welcome to all my new followers!! I feel so special that you want to read about my crafts and the randomness of my life <3 <3



Vegas Pics!

I just wanted to show off some of my most favorite pictures from the trip.
We arrived Thursday night (after a 3 hour delay, boo) and left Sunday morning but we got A TON of stuff crammed in to those 2 full days we had in the Sin City!
Kristin, Liz and I waiting for the plane to take off! (Jess and Shannon were sitting behind us.)

Friday morning we went to the desert which I was incredibly excited about. However, there were no giant cacti!! I REALLY wanted a picture with a giant cactus but found out we needed to be further south to see them. It's still a little too cold in Nevada for them to grow. There were a few planted outside the airport but what a lame back drop...an airport!
Anyway, we drove out to the desert and first stopped at Cactus Joe's nursery. It was 7 acres of plants, cacti and all sorts of hand made wares from local artists. I could have spent hours there, I looove to look at hand made crafts. There were also 10 rescued dogs and a pig! I got myself a metal wall hanging of a road runner and a little stone turtle with tiny seashells making up it's shell.

Then we drove on this beautiful scenic loop around the desert and took some photos of the red rocks and had lunch. I really loved it there, it was the most gorgeous day. Not too hot, a slight breeze and not a cloud in the sky. The contrast of the red rocks against the bright blue sky had me so mesmerized! There were people hiking and rock climbing, I wish we could have hiked just because I will probably never have that opportuniy again. However, I'm glad we didn't because we'd all be tired and possibly sore afterward.

(Look at those sweet, sweet shirts LOL)
That night we went to dinner on Fremont Street. I loved it there, it's "Old Vegas" and there were people dressed up as characters and street performers all walking around. I only cared about two people though...Elvis obsviously and Eric Draven!! When I was in high school I must have watched The Crow a hundred times. My senior quote in the year book is "It can't rain all the time." Oh hopelessly romantic, depressed, goth teenager...yes I was! There was an awesome Queen light show on this roof type thing they have the goes over part of the street which I loooved too!
(I'm sorry these pictures are all different sizes, I tried to make them the same but it didn't work our well!)
Also, these leopard print jeans I'm wearing are the ones I made myself. I mentioned them in my Instax 5 post yesterday. They're the only pants I've ever made myself and they fit really well!

We went to a club that night (yes I went to a club). We got in for free and got free drinks (well only 2...totally fishy) and my first one was spilled all over me about 13 seconds after I got it. I tried to dance but was immediately groped and humped so I just hung by the bar. I didn't have the greatest time there but it was some good people watching.
This is the fun I had in the first 10 minutes we were there.

Saturday we went to a huge buffet in our hotel and looked at the Lion habitat they have. (Yes, Lions in our hotel!!)
Then we walked around the strip for a while. Same thing as Fremont street...characters, street performers, etc. all over. But there were a lot more people trying to get us to go to their club or give us CDs and what have you. I do have to say that I was a little disappointed that I never had that "Wooow!!" feeling while in Vegas. Shannon made a really good point though, we are all totally jaded since we go to New York City and Atlantic City pretty regularly. Vegas definitely seemed like they just took AC and stuck it in the middle of Times Square and planted palm trees. However, the weather was beautiful, hehe!!

There was a guy with a lizard at one corner and he was awesome!! The lizard's name is Little Vegas and this guy took my camera and got some really awesome pictures of Shannon and I. I wish I had more money to give him for a tip because he totally went above and beyond!

I didn't do much gambling. Seriously, I think I gambled a total of $20.00. I'm just too cheap and broke to throw money away like that. I did have more money that I had planned to gamble but...I prefer to look around, take in the sights and browse the shops, etc. We went into Paris while on the strip and that place was freaking adorable! They made the whole place look like you were outside! We also saw the fountains at the Bellagio which was really cool.
That night we ate at one of the restaurants in our hotel and then went to Thunder from Down Under. I was pretty bummed that we couldn't take pictures in there but I understand why. Also, at the end you can take pictures with all the guys and buy them so they're trying to make their money, we didn't do that though. For the most part, I'm not really attracted to muscley, pretty boy types which was the majority of the men. There was one, long haired gentleman who I didn't mind though ;)
After that we went to the Ghostbar which was a lounge type place on the roof of the Palms. That was very awesome to see the whole strip from up there!
We were going to go to another club in the Palms too but all of us were pretty miserable from walking around so much in heels. I used to be able to rock heels all day and night without a problem. After my accident I had to take at least a year break from wearing heels because of my ankle and heel. Now my job doesn't require us to dress up everyday so I rarely wear them. I have a pretty wretched blister on my foot now from walking so much in them that night. So after milling around in that casino, we headed back to our hotel and got changed. Some of us went to New York, New York to eat then we all went to bed because we had to be up by 7am to get to airport and head home.
All in all it was an awesome vacation and it was really great going with all of my friends!!



Instax 5

Here is Instax number 5 in my 52 Photos in 52 Weeks project. I'm pretty happy with myself for keeping up with this. I mean how hard is it to take one picture a week really? Ha!
I do keep my camera sitting right on my dresser so I see it everyday. I think that helps me not forget and to keep it always on my mind.
I'm having a hard time with taking the actual pictures though. They always seem off center from what I see in the view finder. I wish I could practice more without going through film =/
Does anyone have any tips for getting the pictures to come out more center? Or to come out like how I see the subject in the view finder? I looked in the manual and it says I could be too close but I've made sure that I'm not! Grr!
Anyway...here is my fabric stash! Well this is actually only about 1/3 of my fabric, these are just some of my favs at the moment.

I've always though of myself primarily as a sewer. Whenever people ask what kind of crafts I do, the first thing out of my mouth is "I sew." Which is funny, considering I've barely sewn anything in the last year. Crocheting and embroidery have taken over!! I did sew my sister an apron for this Christmas but I didn't take pictures of it =(
I used to reconstruct band tshirts and make tank tops and a few dresses for myself. I even made a pair of really awesome pants. I have a TON of patterns too, I might now be inspired to get them out and actually make something!



Vegas Shirts!

So I got back from Vegas on Sunday...I will be posting some of my favorite pictures from the whole trip, hopefully tomorrow. It's rough getting all the pictures since there were 5 of us with cameras and phones! For now I wanted to show the shirts I made for all of us to wear.
I originally wanted to have the same theme for all of them but then make the ladies a little different and more personal for each of us. Well, in the beginning I had about a million ideas and was really excited about them. When it came down to actual execution, I ended up throwing things around my apartment out of frustration. It's REALLY hard to make a stencil of a person, to cut out just skinny outlines for the legs, arms, etc.
In the end I decided to go with a "Lady Luck" theme. I drew up the general design and then used a picture of the beautiful Bettie Page for the chic in the middle. Everything was cut out as a stencil except for the words and her actual facial features, those I painted on free hand.
I did both the freezer paper method and also used plastic sheets and spray adhesive. I like both methods equally but the plastic sheets are easiest for something small and that you will use multiple times, I used it for the chic in the middle.
I ended up doing the same thing on all the shirts, I like them...not love them. I think if I hadn't had all the grandiose ideas originally, I would like them more.
Oh well..

Here I am in the desert with the shirt on, we all wore them this day!