Monday, December 31, 2007
Posted by Samsara at Monday, December 31, 2007
Sunday, December 30, 2007
My training partner has given it her seal of approval by kissing the corner.
I've also been doing a spot of doodling, just coloured pencils in a sketch pad.
M and I went to Leicester yesterday for our traditional post-Christmas sales visit. Neither of us are really big shoppers, but it's nice to go to a different town for a wander. I bought a gorgeous long Nomads skirt in black velvet with black embroidery on, and M had a tregas piercing. Believe me, he tried to be cool, but I heard his little sucky intake of breath sound when the needle went through. I think it hurt *lol* He's pleased with it though.
As 2007 draws to a close, I have to say that I'm not sad to see the back of it. It's been a hard year and I look forward to a Happier New Year for myself and for all of you.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Monday, December 24, 2007
I made these starry earrings on a whim to include in my sisters basket.
And I made this for fun. I haven't decided the fate of this one yet.
And my progress on the Sock of Doom? Here we go, I've turned the heel and I'm on the foot bit now, the gusset is it called?
Anyway, I'm all done now and ready for the big day tomorrow. And just to throw a couple more spanners in the works, because this year hasn't been bad enough, our remortgage cash back payment hasn't cleared yet, and our microwave stopped working last night! On a better note, I got a new job, and have been able to resign from my crappy job! It's not all bad then!
LOVE AND LIGHT TO YOU ALL!
Friday, December 21, 2007
Posted by Samsara at Friday, December 21, 2007
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
I also painted this for my sister. Her living room is this colour, so it should go nicely.
And I've been making lots of crocheted gift baskets (a good stash busting exercise). Here's a mini tut for Penny and anyone else that's interested.
I used a big hook (this one's about an 8m) and 3 or 4 strands of yarn. This will make your basket stiff enough to stand up on it's own. I made a loop (with a pullable tail) and crocheted about 6 dc into it, and then pulled the tail tight so that the hole closed up.
I carried on crocheting in a spiral, increasing every stitch in the first few rounds, then gradually increasing less and less, so that the work laid flat. When it was as big as I wanted the base to be, I used a flat stitch to join the work.
I then flipped the circle over and removing the hook from the stitch, pushed the hook through from the other side and grabbed the stitch again.
I then dc crocheted round the posts of the circle, so it formed a little wall.
Once I'd been round the circle, I switched back to dc in the normal way, joining each row with a slip stitch, till it was as tall as I wanted it to be. The base should have a nice little ridge round it.
When it was tall enough, I carried on crocheting round a little, then chained about 10 stitches and then reattached them to the basket, I carried on a little further and then chained another 10 stitches and reattached them These will form the handles, so make sure that they're roughly opposite each other. All done. I used all the scraps of wool that are too little for bigger projects, and if you change the colours round regularly, the basket will have an interesting texture.
By the way, the cookies were cooked and consumed. They were good. Too good. Even M ate them and he has borderline OCD food fussiness. I'm considering buying a packet of Smarties tomorrow to make some Smarties cookies. Mmmmmm, chocolate.....I shouldn't really; no matter how much I protest that they will be for gifts, I have very little willpower when it comes to chocolate.
Sunday, December 16, 2007
I spent the rest of the day in the kitchen - I made crumbly vanilla fudge, which will be for the Outlaws presents. I prefer my fudge crumbly rather than soft and chewy, so instead of using condensed milk in my fudge, I use evaporated milk. This makes for a lovely crumbly texture that is irresistible, and I'm desperately trying to resist it.
I also made some cookie dough. It's 'resting' in the fridge. M's already tried to steal half the raw dough. I made it using the whipping disk thingy on my mini food processor. I've never used it before, and I love it. It made mixing so easy! The chocolate chips are some crushed almond Hershey Kisses that my sister brought me back from New York. M doesn't really like them, he thinks they're a bit bitter, and I thought he would probably eat them in cookies. If I left them in the fridge, I would have ended up eating the whole packet and my hips would not have thanked me *lol* They're a basic cookie mix, butter, sugar, self-raising flour and an egg, with crushed almond kisses. I'll let you know how they turn out. If M doesn't like them, I can always give them as gifts.
Then I was on a roll. These are some peanut butter treats for the Hound of the Baskervilles. They're even easier: wholewheat flour, baking powder, peanut butter and milk. you'll be pleased to know that they receive the Hounds seal of approval. When a dog sits in front of you drooling at the mere sight of the promised treat in your hands, then you know he likes them. I let him have one to try, and the others are going in his Christmas stocking. I know that he likes peanut butter, he has a Kong, a cone shaped hollow rubber chew that you can fill with treats to keep them busy, I often scrape a little peanut butter inside and watch him craning his tongue inside to get it all out!
By the way, I've been playing with Google Reader lately. I read about it on Ysolda's blog; you paste in the url's of your favourite blogs, and then you just log in and it tells you which one's have been updated, and takes you straight to the new page. I've probably wasted/saved alot of time being able to go straight to new pages, and to find new exciting blogs :-)
Friday, December 14, 2007
And here are a few of the others. It's quite therapeutic making recycled cards, you almost don't have to think; it's like the bubblegum of the craft world; insubstantial, but highly enjoyable. Please don't take offense card-makers, I mean that in the nicest way. I hope all of you will save the cards you receive this year and make new Eco-friendly cards with them for next year.
I also made some bookmarks using old cards and notelet cards that people have sent over the years with swap packages. I'm a terrible hoarder and hate to throw anything pretty away. Some of you may recognise some of the bookmark inserts *lol*
As I have been doing a craft fair a week for a while now, painting has also taken up quite a bit of my time. Here's a snap shot of some of the things I've been working on. They will be arriving in my eBay shop shortly (if they don't sell this weekend). Most of my glass art is ethically sound as the glass I use is purchased from charity shops, so I'm recycling, and also supporting charity.
And sensitive as ever to the idea that this is my busiest season of the year, my brother always seems to turn up with little side projects for me. He works as a medical photographer at our local General Hospital and there are three of them in their department; he wanted a set of mugs, one for each of them, with their names on. It's hard to tell in this photo, but the mugs are pint mugs (big). He gave me a free hand, but said they shouldn't be girlie. I only had a couple of porcelain paints, so this is what I did with what I had. Shame it won't be a paid job, but if he insists, I'll charge him a bottle of wine *lol*
So, what presents have I been working on? This is for the above mentioned brother. It's a work-in-progress. He's into tropical fish, and Koi carp. When he was with The Bitch (ex GF), he had a Koi pond and a tropical tank, but when she kicked him out, she let them all die. Bitch. I hope the painting turns out okay.
I've also painted some wineglasses, and will probably pop a bottle of wine in with them. Money's a bit tight this year, so I'm really trying to craft with what I've got in my stash.
I've also been making these yarn baskets which I think may serve as gift baskets. (I'm determined not to buy gift wrap this year - such a waste of paper!) There's about three or four strands of yarn crocheted together, so the baskets are nice and sturdy. It looks a little misshapen in this photo, but it's not IRL, I promise you!
I made the stocking part of these last year, but never got around to completing them, so I finished them off this year. I have such a splendid new stocking myself, (thanks Penny!) that I couldn't let M not have one. The other one was originally going to be for me, but now it will be for the Hound of the Baskervilles, or the Girls (my cats). I have a few little trinkets to pop into M's already, but he won't think to get anything for my stocking. I was going to treat myself to a few nice things to pop in it, but with money being tight, I guess that won't happen now.
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Other than that I went to an interview for a course which starts next September! There are limited places, so I hope I get on. It'll be a years intensive study, but will give me a TESOL certificate, which means I'll be able to teach English to speakers of other languages anywhere in the world. I also went to an interview for a job at my local college, to supplement my school teaching. It'll mean I can hopefully leave my other (crappy) job and will make me happier in the long run.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Monday, December 10, 2007
The nights only male dancer. He may have had a bit of a belly on him, but boy, he certainly was supple; at one point he bent over backwards and practically touched the floor.
One of the groups was too big for the stage and overflowed to the dance floor.
A swirling dervish!
So yeah, it was a good day. It's a shame that we've now broken up for Christmas and won't be dancing together again till the beginning of January. I still don't like performing on a stage, but the buzz afterwards is good!
Posted by Samsara at Monday, December 10, 2007