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Thursday, January 27, 2011

happy birthday. katie.

photo from the thanksgiving play at school - katie was "big bear" and apparently I was a pilgrim
k - sending you my warmest wishes for a wonderful day and the best kind of year...and a big virtual hug.
can't wait to see you and celebrate!
xxoo - m.

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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

wip wednesday - cove cardigan.

...I had planned to use one of these photos to get back on track with wordless wednesday, but I'm just too excited about this project not to share a bit more about it!
first up, the yarn. it's madelinetosh pashmina in the cove colorway, a blend of blues, browns, grays and greens that reminds me of winter in the low country. I know it will look great with jeans...and black and maybe brown and gray, which means it will go with just about everything I own :-) the yarn is a lovely blend of merino, cashmere and silk that is a dream to knit, even on size 4 needles.

then, the pattern. heidi kirrmaier's fall away cardigan. I've knit another of heidi's patterns (peasy. twice) and it was both well-written and well-fitting. this is another top-down seamless design, but it's published by madelinetosh, not heidi. and according to ravelry, I'm an "early adopter" - less than a dozen of them knit so far. which means there are some kinks to work out in the pattern (nothing that major, but I did rip out the first twelve rows or so and re-do them once I figured out the yoke shaping). I've written to madelinetosh and hope there will be a revised version published before I convince any of my students to knit it!

and finally, how it's coming together. (quickly, too - it's just two days of knitting!)

a few more details on ravelry. here.


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

10 favorite health and beauty products.

...hummm, ok, the first two things that come to mind aren't really "products" per se, but definitely key to my personal health (and beauty :-) regimen!

1. water. thanks to vanessa for pointing out the benefits and gently convincing me I need to drink a meaningful amount of it each day. I try for at least 64 oz. and even though I count tea in that amount, I don't count coffee - some days 64 oz is hard! but it makes me feel good on the inside and my skin looks so much better when it's hydrated.

2. fresh air. especially this winter, there have been days I just want to curl up on the couch in my pj's. all day. but getting outside, hopefully at the park, for even a short walk does wonders for my frame of mind. and puts color in my cheeks and a smile on my face.

...and now on to more traditional products:

3. black mascara and bobbi brown's raspberry lip gloss. this is the third time I've included these two items on a ten on tuesday list - for makeup, these are my only essentials. and yes, it's "mascarandlipgloss" so it counts as just one thing!

4. nivea's skin firming body lotion. I'm honestly not sure if it works because I'm afraid to stop using it to see!

5. keratin complex infusion/repair. two products that I mix together. I have curly hair and these products help keep the curls pretty without getting too frizzy and they really help on days when I want to wear my hair straight.

6. aveeno positively ageless facial scrub and moisturizer. my daytime regimen.

7. oil of olay facial hydrating cloths. my nighttime regimen. (and I just tried the costco brand of these...sadly, they aren't the same!)

8. tazo teas. helping me drink all that water! my current favorites are decaffeinated chai, green ginger and rest.

9. q-tips. I didn't realize how much I need these until I left home for 2-1/2 weeks without any. I had to buy some on the second day!

10. jo walsh's brow waxes. I've been seeing jo (she works at spa sydell) for about fifteen years. every four weeks. she's amazing!

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Friday, January 21, 2011

making me smile.

...thinking happy thoughts, especially since it's friday!
♥ the first round of increases on the cranberry capelet is done and I put the whole thing onto waste yarn to try it on - whew! - it fits!
♥ I wove in the ends on the sursa shawl and until I can get to a steam iron, it's as done as it can be. so I'm going to swatch for my next project - the fallaway cardigan in madelinetosh pashmina (cove colorway).
♥ listening to the christmas edition of electric sheep - makes we want to see a panto "for real".
♥ fresh kumquats - an expensive delicacy from the market, but the innkeeper says we can have as many as we want from the four trees in the yard. yummmm.
♥ my dad got a good report at the doctor today.

♥happy friday. ♥happy weekend!

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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

10 favorite games from my childhood.

playing cards with my dad, originally blogged here
...what a fun topic! games were big in my family. we played a lot. and a few of us were pretty competitive about it :-)

1. cards - from go fish when I was young to rummy and then hearts and spades when I was a teenager. my grandmother attempted to teach me bridge at least twice and sadly, I never got it. I have a terrible memory for the cards that have been played so it makes "strategy" hard.

2. candy land and chutes and ladders - favorite first board games. I loved the cards in candy land, especially the gum drops.

3. monopoly.

4. life - the newer versions aren't nearly as much fun as the one I remember playing with the cars that had little holes for you to place the blue pegs for baby boys and the pink ones for girls.

5. yahtzee - I first remember playing this with my grandfather on a family vacation to the ozark mountains in arkansas when I was seven or eight.

6. cribbage - the different boards are so much fun.

7. twenty questions - still a favorite for car trips.

8. sorry.

9. parchesi - now I can't even remember what this game was about. a board, pegs, cards maybe? but the name has stayed with me.

10. solitaire - I knew a lot of versions in addition to the traditional one with seven piles. there was a pyramid one and one where you laid out all 52 cards in four rows. that one took a lot of table or floorspace, because of course I played with real cards!

I'm short on time this morning, so apologize for the absence of links...but looking forward to checking out a few of my favorites on line to see if they still exist! this was fun - thanks, carole!

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Saturday, January 15, 2011

a morning prayer.

sunrise over the st johns river...taken with my iphone hipstamatic app
a good friend loaned me the book talking to god by naomi levy. I read the introduction a few days ago and knew I was going to love it. last night I read the first chapter on daily prayer and this one, a morning prayer, struck a chord. I marked it to re-read first thing this morning. and now I think I'm going to make it a part of my early morning routine.
  There are so many things I take for granted. May I not ignore them today.
  Just for today, help me, God, to remember that my life is a gift, that my health is a blessing, that this new day is filled with awesome potential, that I have the capacity to bring something wholly new and unique and good into this world.
  Just for today, help me, God, to remember to be kind and patient to the people who love me, and to those who work with me too. Teach me to see all the beauty that I so often ignore, and to listen to the silent longing of my own soul.
  Just for today, help me, God, to remember You.
  Let this be a good day, God, full of joy and love. Amen.


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

snow play.

...another forced day inside - I was excited to read kim klassen's latest post about snow photos...and photoshop. I took a few snow photos this morning using my zoom lens and spent a very fun hour adding soft light, linear light and multiply filters and the grey day slate texture.

the backyard - duplicated the background with soft light 30% and added the texture with soft light 100%

the bird feeder - duplicated the background with soft light 20% and added the texture with soft light 100%

the rhodie (cannot wait for spring...and blooms!) - duplicated the background with linear light 30%

another view of the back yard - duplicated the background with soft light 20%

the japanese maple (quite a change from november 10!) - duplicated the background with soft light 25%, added the texture with soft light 100% and then duplicated the texture with multiply 10%

the river birch by our front door - duplicated the background with soft light 25% and added the texture with soft light 27%


Monday, January 10, 2011

taking measure.

plus this
means a lot more of this
hope you're staying dry & warm ... and knitting!

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Thursday, January 6, 2011

focus. one little word for 2011. because I've lost mine (or maybe things have simply changed a lot since I last had it?) and I miss it. I chose this word to help me find it again and devote the proper attention to whatever it might be. I also love the photography references and I hope to improve the focus of my photographs.

lofty objectives. certainly the biggest ones I've ever had for this project. honestly it's a bit scary. but I'm welcoming the challenge. inviting discovery, joy, surprise, devotion, commitment, study, learning, accomplishment and delight.

to help me, I've signed up for ali's on-line course. most of my work for the january prompt is done (I still need a photo to document the beginning, and now that the sun is going to be out for a few days I'm sure I can get one - in focus!). I'm really pleased with what I've created...and the work that went into it has helped me define where I want to go. and that is always the best place to start!

my album materials have been shipped - this baseball card holder is temporary! (I hope the actual materials fit the cards better)...and after much deliberation, I've decided to use basic grey's urban couture collection for the patterned papers (yes, "real" paper!). I love the colors and the design and I'm really happy about using something I already have!

a closeup of one of the cards...I had a great time poring over magazines looking for words and images that evoke FOCUS


the morning walk (winter).

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

10 things* I wouldn't want to live without.

...*carole's already said that people aren't things. I think that means animals aren't either. and to make the list more fun, it seems like the necessities of food, water, shelter and clothing, while they're certainly "things" aren't the kinds of things we're talking about. this list, for me at least, is the things I could live without, but boy, I really hope it never comes to that!

1. coffee. it's maybe a stretch to think I could live without it. I certainly wouldn't make much sense, and I think I'd be pretty cranky....
the first of six!!! coffee images from my 2009 365 project
 2. my iphone. I've only had it since last may (eight months?) and it has changed my life. I love having a phone and texting and email and the internet and a pretty good camera and an ipod all in one small device. and it definitely frees up more room on this list!

3. my laptop. I have a dell inspiron. it's three years old (I'm starting to worry about it!) and has been to paris, portland (twice), new york (five times) and countless other places. I feel lost without it and hope it has at least another year left before I have to replace it.

4. knitting. yarn and needles and a pattern (I like to knit, not design!). and I know that's three things, but it's when they all come together as "knitting" that makes it the thing I don't want to live without.

5. my russell+hazel mini binder. the key to staying organized. and I think it looks cool.

6. a bible. preferably the NIV translation. maybe in big print (see #8)!

7. a microwave. for heating the milk in my coffee. reheating leftovers. making popcorn. steaming vegetables. cooking oatmeal. I think it's the most versatile kitchen appliance I own.

8. reading glasses. I thought about this being in the necessity category, because it is. but I have four for my desk, one for my pocketbook, one for the bed, and just since last week, one for my vanity - I'm amazed at the very tiny print on cosmetics and it makes it easier to file my nails when I can actually see them!

9. black mascara and bobbi brown's raspberry lip gloss. again two things, but it's always "mascaraandlipgloss" for me. (btw - I didn't realize the lip gloss was a limited edition color - I hope I can find another tube...sadly, mine is almost empty)

10. good sneakers. like the nike's I have on right now. I walk a lot and good sneakers are key so my feet and knees don't hurt.

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