Tuesday, January 31, 2012

I can still turn heads.....

“We have to dare to be ourselves, however frightening or strange that self may prove to be.”
May Sarton
Not our normal weekend. We spent it looking at cars, Then finally decided that we were better off with what we have at the moment. But it did kill the whole weekend and then some. We couldn't find anything we liked worth the money they were asking. The one we seriously thought about they tried to jack us around when it came time to deal. Sorry guys. We didn't need or want it bad enough for us to let you screw us. 
So I didn't get too much crocheting done. Though my doily is making good progress as I did crochet when were driving around. Will finish it up right after I finish the project that will be my February pattern that I had set aside when I ran out of yarn. The yarn arrived to finish it up yesterday. I already have one finished. I also have the  pattern modified for the next one so now it's just re crochet it. The third is all planned out and won't take me too long to do. So feeling good about what is happening here. 
I prefer not to have so many irons in the fire at one time. But some of these have been set aside while I awaited materials to finish them up. So now that the yarn is here they get top priority once more.
Had to chuckle this morning. I managed to turn a few heads in the post office this morning. It never fails that there is a long line whenever I go to my post office. I decided not to stand there bored and irritable, so I took my doily I am working on with me. As I stood in line I got almost a rnd done. People gave me some strange looks, but who cares. It was much more pleasant doing something productive than standing there doing nothing. Seemed like the wait went much faster than it normally does. But then I am always happy with hook in hand. I will do this again. But I thought it was funny that  I can still turn heads, Just not the same way I could when I was younger.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Time out

“A path is made by walking on it.”
Needed take time out today and keep a promise I have been making to my dog. He needed clipped badly. Not so much because he gets too warm, But because he has that fine Yorkie hair that mats and tangles so easily. That and it grabs everything when we are out hiking.
So I tortured the poor little guy and took the clippers to him. Yes I do it myself. Figured if I could body clip a horse I could certainly clip a dog. This has been about the 5th time I have done him. True we won't win any beauty prizes but he is far less traumatize by me doing it than a stranger. Heck he won't let strangers touch him so I figured it would be kindest if I did it. He is so patient and would love me to be faster. But we do get it done and he never forgets to let me know I owe him when we are done. There had better be a treat or I get no peace. 
This is Pip in a shot Marv took last week. He won't look quite so cute in the next picture you see of him I am sure. But we will both be happier.
I did get quite a bit of crocheting done this morning and will get more done this afternoon and evening. My project is coming along nicely. and should be done by tomorrow night if all goes well. But I can work in peace now knowing I kept my promise that I have been making for the last couple of weeks.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Think about it.

“Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway.”
Eleanor Roosevelt
Today I found myself running in circles trying to get all the things I needed to do done so I could actually sit down and crochet.
Made me stop and think about how just involved being a designer can be.
It's not just sitting and crocheting up wonderful things. There is so much more to it than that. It would be so much easier to be just a hobbyist crocheter. Then I could crochet to my hearts content and never worry about anything.
But I have chosen to become a designer as I am driven to create and want to share my love and passion with others not just today, but for tomorrow's crocheters as well.  
But to do so you have to be your own critic, design coordinator, writer, editor,correspondent, publicist, agent, secretary, accountant, supply coordinator, and cheerleader on a almost daily basis.
So many things have to happen to get patterns published whether they be self published or published elsewhere. It is a rare day that I can just sit and work on a design. Normally I have emails to answer. Supplies to order or procure. The patterns to write and then coordinate getting them tested. Not to mention writing up proposals, submitting them, If I am going to self publish a design I have to think about presentation. Photographs, editing, pricing, and promotion.
Don't get me wrong. I do love this!
But I did need to step back this morning and realize there is a reason I am spinning my wheels some days and my hook has to take a back seat. It's just a part of the challenge I took on when I decided to be serious about my designing. Would I change it? Heck NO!  But do remember that when you use someone's pattern it took a whole lot more than someone sitting down and crocheting the piece.
Now that I have worn all the other hats I needed to for the day I am putting on my crochet hat and going to work on my latest design.  This is my bonus time, my reason for all the rest.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Feeling the Joy

“For every minute you are angry you lose sixty seconds of happiness.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
I haven't posted in a few days as I was at the TNNA trade show this weekend and needed yesterday to regroup and retrench. Just too much sensory input for my brain to take in.
Friday we did spend the day hiking and enjoying our time together since I knew I wouldn't be available Saturday and Sunday. Glad we did. It was a very pleasant day and helped me get things in perspective before the show. I will post pictures later this week. Haven't had time to get them ready to post.
   I went to see if I want to be a member of TNNA. Seemed like a good time to check them out since the show was in my neck of the woods. Drg was kind enough to get me a badge so I could get into the show. ( Thank you Connie for making this happen ) So I spent my day with a friend checking out just what TNNA has to offer and what it's all about. Still thinking about whether or not to join. But now I have a better idea of what it all entails.
We did have a great time. And why not. Yarn and thread to oogle and pet. People that love the same things I do to talk to. You can't ask for much more. Though it's probably a good thing I couldn't purchase any of the yarn. I would be in serious debt here.
Yesterday I spent the day jotting down my ideas and inspirations from the show.
Today I started putting some of my ideas in use. Actually I am working on an idea that I had before. But the show inspired me to move it up on my list of things to do. I did come away with about 3 new ideas though. Which brings me back to the fact that I really do need more hours in a day.
I have spent today happily creating and writing the pattern for what is coming off my hook. The pattern is written except just a little for the finish, which needs to wait until I get there. So I am now down to just crochet the piece. Which shouldn't take too long now that I have it all figured out.
I do love these sort of days.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Better day!

“To finish the moment, to find the journey's end in every step of the road, to live the greatest number of good hours, is wisdom.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Yesterday was sort of a bust. I did lots, yet did nothing. You know the sort of day where it takes twice as long to do anything and at the end of the day you wonder what you did accomplish. I finally surrendered and read a book. Made the most sense and I guess I needed that break.
I did get some decent pictures of the Sunset yesterday. It was one of those gorgeous ones that require you to take the time to appreciate. I am posting those pictures today.
Today is going much better and my hook is flashing.
Keeping good notes so I can write up the pattern if it turns out. I gave up writing as I go as I make too many changes while designing and it takes much longer to re write a pattern than to write one. At least for me.  Besides it's easier to get into the process when you don't have to constantly stop to write what you are doing down. I have my short hand sketches that I use that allow me to keep the creative juices flowing when I am working yet get the pattern correct when I take the time to write it out.
Getting excited about going to the TNNA show this weekend. Not sure what to expect. But I am leaving my expectations open and plan on having a good time.
Here are my Sunset pictures.
The dramatic sunset yesterday afternoon. Can't believe I actually took a good sunset picture.

The Superstitions get glowing in the afternoon light. I love seeing them like this. Lucky for me this is the view from my front yard.

Another shot of the sun hitting the Superstitions. Love the Storm clouds. We did get rain the night before which always thrills me.

This is the view of the sky from my back yard. The clouds are reflecting that gorgeous sunset.
I love looking at the beauty nature provides us everyday if we remember to look.

Monday, January 16, 2012

High, Ho, High, Ho, It's a hiking we will go!

“It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.”
Herman Melville

   Ready for another week of work around here. This week I will be getting ready to go check out the TNNA Trade show here in Phoenix this weekend. I have been debating whether to join it or not. So was really glad to get this opportunity to check them out and talk to people that are involved with it. Then I can make an educated decision.
  Since I finished my project last week. I decided I needed a lace break. So I put a new doily design on the hook. Though I haven't had a lot of time to work on in this weekend it is starting to come along like I want. Have frogged more than a couple times to get what I want. Every time I go WHAT IF  in my mind it normally means I will be FROGGING shortly. But I never minded frogging when it's design related. That is part of the trade. And I just don't like to just settle. I want to be proud of what I create. So I welcome my What if button and frog as it dictates.
  We took a great hike on Saturday in the Salt river area. Same area we hiked last weekend. But took a different, longer trail this time. Other than a lot of it was in soft sand uphill it was wonderful. My legs told me about the sand the next day and I rarely get sore from all the hiking. So you know it was a tough one.  Even pip was dragging his little behind by the end of the walk and it was a shorter walk than some we have done. Will we do it again? Of Course. Plan on it when the desert starts to bloom.  We of naturally took a lot of pictures. I am actually getting somewhat more proficient with my camera. Though when I want a really good shot I ask Marv. He still does a much better job than I do. But sometimes I surprise myself and take a shot or two I am really proud of.
Well here are this weekends pictures.
Since I can't share pictures of my crochet I will share pictures of our hikes.

I couldn't believe my eyes when I spotted flowers blooming. I had to take pictures of the lovely red blossoms. No wonder I saw several hummingbirds out and about that day.

The early part of out walk was along the Salt river. Marv caught this neat dead tree in the early morning light.

This is from down on the beach along the Salt River. If you look closely you can see the moon up in the sky. I didn't realize I had caught it in my picture until I was editing them to post. I again was intriqued by the color combinations that I find in nature. I find myself using a lot of these colors in my designing.  We left the river from here and didn't see it again until much later in our hike.

This is a picture looking up the wash we followed for about 2 miles or so. The footing was soft sand.

This is a limestone oven. The used it to cook the natural limestone close to it's source.

We are still reaping the benefits of the rains in early December. Love the green tint to everything. Will miss it this summer I know, But I am enjoying it now.

Once more we are entranced by the power of nature. The Tree grew right around this rock when it was alive. The rock is still trapped in the tree for who knows how much longer in time.

Pip leading us down into a cool shady wash.

Marv caught the beauty of this tree stump. Again the colors are intriguing.

Me showing what a great time we were having.

We ended up coming full circle and the last part of our hike was again along the Salt river.

Another tree gnarl. These are just so beautiful in their own way.

I think this is a Mesquite. But I was trying to capture the colors and the delicacy here.

The afternoon sun striking the mountains. Love the contrast with the tinge of green to the desert.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Against the tide.

“There isn't a person anywhere who isn't capable of doing more than he thinks he can.”
Henry Ford
There are times when it seems like you take one step forward and 2 steps back. The last few days have felt that way for me. The harder I try the more I slipped behind my goals.
I ended up at the Urgent care the other day with an infection that needed dealt with. Half my day gone. So much for being done with my project by Tuesday night.
Yesterday I had to make a 2 hour trip into town for 1 hank of beads that I needed to finish my project. Then I changed my edging and I didn't need to make that trip after all. Nor did I have to string nearly as many beads I did. The good news is it will be easier for others.
I did finally complete my project this afternoon and it's on the blocking board. Yeah! and I like it. Double Yeah!!  Now I will finish up the pattern for it tomorrow and I will have one more major commitment done! Triple Yeah!!!
But I am tired and feeling a bit down tonight. So I think I will just kick back and do some playing. After all I did pick up some gorgeous thread when I was in town yesterday. After all is seemed a waste  to spend 2 hours running to town just for a hank of beads. The thread made it much more worthwhile. That and I think I am in serious need of a doily fix. So why fight it. I think I will go with the tide just this once, at least for tonight.  

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Another great quote

“The market follows the artist. The artist does not follow the market.”
Iimani David
My  day has not gone as planned. But that is life and I will finish what I intended to finish today, tomorrow.
Unfortunately my body decided that I really needed to go see a doctor at the urgent care this morning. I am now on antibiotics for an infection. Hopefully I will be feeling more like myself in a few days time.
I am now going to curl up with my hook and spend the rest of the day in a much better way. Letting my creative juices flow. This design I was hoping to finish this afternoon. But It should be done totally by Thursday morning now.  I am having to resist the urge to lay it out on the floor reassure myself that it looks a good as I hope it does. It's far enough along now that it's going to be what it's going to be regardless. Though I am pleased with what I am seeing so far.
I must admit I stopped at Hobby Lobby while out and bought me some thread for doily I have in mind. Needed the pick me up. Not that I really needed the thread. I could of found something in my stash that would work. But sometimes you just need to indulge your inner self. Thread for me is my indulgence of choice. 

I liked my quote for the day as it one of my self truths.
I create to create. I do not create to sell. If I sell what I create wonderful. But it isn't the reason I do this, nor will it ever be.
I create because I am driven.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Love this quote

“Write it. Shoot it. Publish it. Crochet it, sauté it, whatever. MAKE.”
Joss Whedon
Since I started doing my quote of the day  I have never found one that speaks to me more than this one. The key word is make. It's what I must do.
 I was thinking as I was working this morning. We won't go into the dangers of my mind in think mode. I think that has been covered already.  Since I am working on a fairly long project, what I was thinking of  was making progress. To me crochet is a lot like walking. You make no progress unless you put one foot/stitch in front of the one just completed, But if you do that consistently than you will be surprised how far you can go.
I have been making good progress on this project. Only a day or so more and I will have it done. Always makes me feel good when I have kept at something and it takes shape and form faster than I plan. Makes me feel even better when the shape and form meets or exceeds my expectations. That makes me feel so good on so many levels.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Just putzing today

“Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.”
Marcus Aurelius
For once we are taking a kick back day here. Just doing little things that need done around here. Like paint the door for the cupboard for cabinet we had to build for the new hot water tank. But no major job. We haven't taken a at home kick back day for some time. Seems like we are on the go all the time.
My plan is to finish this project then get the rest of my painting done this week.  I will paint the rest of the pantry then.   That will be a much larger job though  as I need to empty it all out first. Not looking forward to that one. But now that we have done all our adaptations to the room it's time.
My  project is going well. It should be done in the next couple days. Right now there isn't much to talk about. I just keep putting the stitches in. One after another. It can be very soothing but doesn't make for an exciting post.
We did go do a hike yesterday. We went up by Saguaro lake again. This time on the other side. Was a great hike. Liked the area very much.  We will be doing this one again.  It should be beautiful when the desert blooms.
Here are the pictures form that hike
This canyon was so pleasant to walk through.

Hieroglyphics at the top of our climb. Notice the hieroglyphic is a lizard and to the left is the real thing checking it out.

Another hieroglyphic

Love looking at the different rock formations on the trails.

This is a view of the Four Peaks from the peak or our climb today.  This summer we plan on hiking up there.

This little guy had to come check us out. 

Down in the canyon.

We both had to resist the urge to climb these stair nature provided.

Mesquite trees clinging to the canyon walls.

Interesting dead tree.

Love the intertwined roots of this tree.

This is a large Iron wood tree.

Butte across the river.

Down in the canyon again. Love how nature can do such a clean slice off this rock face. This was such relaxing part of our hike. So restful.

These are the tunnels the trail goes through under the highway. As you can see they are good sized.

Marv enjoying the day.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Go, Go, Go, Day

“When we live by doing what we love, we are in peace with ourselves!”
Girish Haridas, KRISHNA
Spent most of the day running around today. Bowling started the day off. Then off to get an annual pass for the parks so we can hike now anywhere we want without worrying about getting a day pass. We are doing this enough to make a yearly pass a must. Then we had some other errands to run. Got a great new camera strap for when I am hiking. Since we are taking so many pictures and the camera I am using  can get rather heavy on a 10 mile hike.
Even though we spent a lot of time on the go today I still got quite a bit of crocheting in. I just worked in the car as we were driving about. Amazing how much you can get done that way.
When I got home I had a pleasant surprise waiting for me. I was voted Hooker of the Year  in the Blazing Hooks group on Face Book.  Feel very honored.  Marv is trying to figure out how to explain that title when he goes to work next week. But I am sure he will do just fine. Any one who knows me would know what it means.
Well I promised pictures of our Monday hike.
Love this shot. Late afternoon in the shade with the sun on the ridge reflected in the water. The best of everything!

We started this trip early as it was over 11 miles So we had the long shadows of the morning

Heading down to boulder canyon

Looking down toward the canyon.

Love seeing the green grass from the rain. That and the interesting dead wood always appeals to me.

Lower end of Boulder canyon

Saguaro skeleton and a live Saguaro. You don't normally see the skeletons still standing like this.

One of many pools of water in the canyon

The trail crossed over these boulders. Pip just leaped in. Boy was he surprised when it was deeper than he thought. Got a bath he didn't expect.

Marv caught him mid shake . Looks like he is doing his Falkor imitation from Neverending Story.

Another pool . Love the greens

Marv on the trail

Had to get a shot of the black and white boulders in the creek bed. What a mix UH?

Our buddy the Weavers Needle from yet another angle.

A little closer view

Rock formation reflected in the water late afternoon.

This is the formation that is reflected. We have named this one The Teapot that is me down below.

And Pip ready for the next one