Friday, October 30, 2009

Amanda Grange

Since I was reading P&P books, I thought I'd quickly read "Mr. Darcy's Diary" by Amanda Grange. It's P&P told from Darcy's viewpoint, and it was VERY well done.

It's in diary format, so it's not overly long, and it is quick to read. She used most of the actual dialogue from P&P, however Ms. Grange did add some invented conversations (expanded from text in the book) that were illustrative and pointed and quite in-character.

This book and Ms. Grange's other "diaries" from the Jane Austen men (Mr. Knightley, Colonel Brandon, etc) got great reviews on Amazon, so I need to see if I can find them. Our local libraries don't have them, but maybe I'll initiate a request and see what happens.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Rug Clipping (Part 2)

This is my next attempt using 2" long fabric strips with the rug canvas. I think I prefer this length.

Now I'm going to make a color plan. I want to make concentric rectangles. Most of it will be solid navy blue (the color scheme for my house), but I'll use the print in the picture that has navy, red, and white.

I need a kinda monotonous craft to do while watching basketball, since it is almost that time. Last year I made the banners for my windows during basketball season, so this year I can work on a rug.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Rug Clipping

So I got my big piece of rug canvas - it's 60" x 36" and I have to do something with it. I want to try locker hooking (see my earlier post) but I also would like to make a rug for my entrance hall.

I was interested in trying latch hooking with fabric strips but then I read about rug clipping in a book by Clare Hubbard. Clipping is similar to latch hook except you don't make a "knot" with the loops.

So this is my first attempt to try it and see how it would look. This is using 4" long strips that are 1" wide. I think they're too long and shaggy, and I'm going to cut them in 1/2 (to make 2" strips) and see how it looks.

Monday, October 26, 2009


Our neighborhood has a Halloween Phantom that roams around, rings your doorbell, and leaves goodies on the doorstep.

I love this "new" Halloween fad.  I get the biggest kick out of seeing the treats left on the porch.

Plus I enjoy shopping for fun stuff to make "boo" bags for others in our subdivision.  I usually have my kids ring the bell and run, though, since I don't know if I'm fast enough, and I don't want to get caught. 

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Seth Grahame-Smith

I'd read really good reviews about the book "Pride and Prejudice and  Zombies" by Seth Grahame-Smith, and it is pretty hilarious.  Of course, it's more funny if you know the story of P&P first (in my opinion).

I'll try out my theory on my daughter who wants to read it, but has never read the original P&P nor seen any of the movie versions. She wanted me to read "Zombies" first and make sure it wasn't gruesome (it's definitely NOT).

So I'll let you know if she gets curious about the original P&P after reading the Zombie version.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Dan Brown

I finished Dan Brown's "The Lost Symbol" and I was very, very impressed. Of course, it was a thrilling, page-turning story. But it was the meticulous research that's mind-blowing to me.

While I was reading, I wanted to see all the buildings, monuments, paintings, etc that played a part in solving the riddle. In the grocery store, I saw a companion guide magazine that supposedly showed them all. I might go back and skim through it now that I've read the book and am so intrigued.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Memory Wire Bracelets

In the Creative Home Arts club magazine, there were some craft projects using memory wire to make bracelets.  I thought that looked like fun and wanted to try it (granted, I think alot of things look like fun - that's why I'm a Scanner) so I got some memory wire from my local craft store.

I started this one last night and finished it tonight. The hardest part was making the closed loops on the ends since this memory wire is TOUGH stuff.

Then my daughter wanted a teal one (that's her favorite color) so I made one for her tonight as well.  Her's was easier since the beads were bigger.

The Bead Stoppers also helped alot. They're little springy fasteners that you use to keep your beads from falling off the wire.

The pictures were taken with a scanner by the way which is why they look all sparkly.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Locker Hooking

I bought this book through my crafting book club, and I can't wait to try it.  Locker hooking is kinda the reverse of latch hooking (which I did as a teenager and I still have the pillow I made). You use rug canvas and pull the fabric strips up through the holes and lock them by pulling yarn through the loops.

I looked all over my town for rug canvas and couldn't find any.  My craft stores don't carry it (which I find kinda surprising).  So I had to order it and the locker hook tool online.

I like working with fabric strips (as in crocheting with fabric) so I think this will be fun.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Web Site Cleaning

Today I'm doing Fall cleaning on my websites.

I have to check all the "shops" on my Favorite Online Shops blog and website. Some have changed shopping carts so the current links don't work. Also, some of the shops have closed, and the owners don't always notify their affiliates.

I always feel sad when I have to delete a "shop" from my blog and website. I know some of them have tried so hard and just can't stay afloat.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Afternoon Snacks

As I said in an earlier post, I'm a snackoholic, and I graze all through the day.  I tend to eat a smaller lunch, then have a snack in the afternoon to hold me until dinner.

And during my daughter's tennis season, I got hooked on Chex Mix Turtle bars.  I also love the taste of the Fiber One Oats and Caramel, but they made me feel really bloated.

Then the All You people sent me a sample of the new Slim Fast bars, and they're WONDERFUL. They taste like candy bars. My daughter loves them, too, and since she's a chocoholic, I'd rather she eat these than chocolate.

I bought several flavors today at WalMart to try them, and now I'm trying to find the best possible price. So far, the Amazon Subscribe & Save program looks interesting. You save 15% plus get free shipping. I guess I'll see which flavors my daughter likes the best and go from there.

I'm not in any way affiliated with Amazon, Slim Fast, All You, General Mills, or any company that makes yummy stuff. I just love to eat the yummy stuff.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Titania Hardie

My sister gave me this as a gift last Christmas, and I've just finished reading it now. It's such fun - riddles within riddles. The descendants of John Dee pass down a secret from generation to generation. No one has solved it before, and now Alex and Lucy are racing to find it before the bad guys do.

I love books about Shakespeare and Elizabethan England, so I wish there had been more about John Dee in the book. But I think Ms. Hardie was assuming that if we wanted to know more, we'd do our own research.

This sets the tone for me to read Dan Brown's new book, so I'll let you know what I think of it soon (my son loved it).

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Basket for Basket Bingo (Part 2)

While I was in crochet basket mode, I thought I'd be really helpful and make a basket that could be used for a raffle prize at our upcoming bingo fundraiser.

This basket is made from 5" strips, and this is the best basket I've made so far.  I asked my daughter if she liked it, and she wants us to keep it. She also agreed it's my best.

I guess I'm getting more skilled since it only took me about 3 hours to make it.  Again, the bows seemed to take the longest time since I'm not very creative with them yet.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Basket for Basket Bingo

The basket bingo is just a few days away and I've been assembling prizes for the "balloon burst". I had a small silver-plated jewelry box and wanted to put it in a basket, but I didn't have one small enough.

So I decided to crochet one using thin fabric strips that I'd unraveled from my rag rug (see my older posts about that adventure).

Anyway, it only took about 1 - 1.5 hours to make this small basket.  The nubby look is 'cos I tied the ends of the strips together instead of gluing them so they stick out.

Also, I braided the handle and tied it to the basket instead of crocheting it.  I'd like to get more decorative, funky handle ideas for baskets (and same for bows).

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Cornelia Funke

I'd been wanting to read the Inkheart trilogy by Cornelia Funke for ages, so I finally read Inkheart the other day.  While it was good and I'm kinda curious about what happens in the next book, I'm not quite ready to venture into it.

Not trying to making comparisons to Harry Potter, but the main villain Capricorn made Voldemort look nice.  It was rather dark with not many bright, sunshiny spots to lighten the mood.

I thought the premise was VERY creative and not at all what I expected.  And of course, I love any novel that features books (and book preservation) so prominently.

I'm also somewhat curious to see how the movie compares to the book, so maybe I'll rent it.  I just hope they don't make Capricorn REALLY scary.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Basket Bingo (Part 2)

Oh my heavens, I had no idea these fundraisers were such hard work !! I'm the prize coordinator, so I get to decide if an item (or group of items) will be a raffle prize, a door prize, or a balloon burst prize.

That part has been fun since I have alot of Mary Kay items that make great prizes (I've been a consultant since 1995, mainly personal use). Plus since I help promote the home-based businesses through my Favorite Online Shops, I have lots of giveaways from them also.

But I had to devise a way to make the balloon burst fun WITHOUT using balloons (I don't want to blow them up and then pop them) so I'm writing the prize number on a children's playing card, then covering it with a wrapped starlight mint taped to the card. It kinda plays into the Halloween theme also.

I'll be glad when this is over......

This is not an actual picture of a bingo prize. No dogs are being given away as prizes. I just thought it was a cute picture.
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