Friday, January 27, 2012

Out and About

Another treasured sunny day - especially appreciated after the snow and other wild weather we've had over the last couple of weeks.  I felt compelled to take a photo of the very steep sidewalk that I will add to my walking route when my fitness level increases a bit.  It looks to get the heart rate up quite nicely.
It actually raises my heart rate just looking at it and imagining the climb.

I also had to stop and admire this very posh fire hydrant.  I suspect they may be Husky fans, as it appears to be U.W. colors.

I also like the rocks strategically placed all the way up the stairs.  I, myself, enjoy a good rock.  I've been gathering interesting ones on my walks, to be covered in crochet.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Woman without Project

Here's what happens when I'm left to myself with no project in progress.  I start crocheting around rocks.  You think I jest?
My glassblowing friend sells glass doodles (the round pieces of glass knocked off of blown glass pieces) at our artists' sales.  I suspect these will be my "doodles", as I haven't yet thought of any other way to use them. 

Rocks clothed in crochet, anyone?  If so, you know where to find them!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Gratitude Tuesday

Very soon I will get my camera act together and give you a sneak peek at what happens when I'm without a crafty crocheting project, but for now here's a bit of Tuesday gratitude to people who have given me gorgeous hair and encouragement and resume relief in the job hunt.

I highly recommend the salon BaBaLouise (isn't the name alone fabulous?).  I'm still revelling in my sexy hair.  Not only will they give you great hair, but the artist whose paintings fill their walls is talented and whimsical.

For encouragement and all around wisdom in the job hunting world, please give a hand to Jennifer Foss.  Better yet, visit her website and laugh yourself silly while soaking in her expertise.  She has created for me a resume I am proud to provide to potential employers and it is already garnering interest with employers who previously wouldn't acknowledge my existence.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Snowy Seattle: Day 2

Unbelievably, this is the second day that it has snowed all day in Seattle.  Crazy, but pretty.  I did take a walk out to The Barking Dog, which was packed with people tired of being stuck at home and/or warming up after sledding.  Today's photo selection:

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Snow Day in Seattle

I know people elsewhere think we are wimps in Seattle the way we treat snow days, but you gotta love a city that simply shuts down and relishes a good snow day when we get one.  It will be raining by tomorrow, so we were all out today (at least what seemed like a good majority of us) making a day in the snow tons of fun.  Here are some photos from my out and about-ing.

Seattle hills are good for sledding; wheeeee!

Not the season for lavender
Folded Ear Cat's opinion of the snow; just ignore it and it will go away.

Pie Town

I know that title piqued your interest, because who doesn't love a good pie?  I stayed up until the wee hours this morning finishing the book Pie Town by Lynne Hinton.  How marvelous it was.  In Pie Town, not a slice of pie can be found (the bakers sold the restaurant and left town; now there are only brownies on the menu for dessert).  This is a small town where people have so much trouble agreeing on anything that they had to return the stimulus funds to the government because they couldn't decide on which streets to fix with the money.  The only thing that brings everyone together is a boy in a wheelchair with a bright spirit and enough faith to save them all, or at least point them in the right direction.  Alex is a charmer.

Alex was born with spina bifida and was raised by his grandparents, Roger and Malene, after his mother ran off.

"Alex was the light of more than one person's world. And between Malene and Roger, and with Oris and his neighbors, the nurses who worked with Malene and the officers who worked with Roger, the priest and people from church, Alex was parented and grandparented and loved and watched over by everybody in the little town. He was the child the entire village raised. He was the soul of Pie Town."

He and Roger love to banter.

"Hey, Sheriff," the boy said, his voice sounding soft and weak. "You coming to take me in?"
Roger smiled. "That depends. Have you broken the law?"
"I stole Grandma's heart," he replied.
"Well, that may require jail time, trooper."

Into this pie-less town come a new priest and a lost girl he found hitchhiking.  He's not happy that his arrival in town is with a young woman in his car, fearing that his reputation will be tarnished.  Alex feels an instant bond with both of them.  Both Father George and Trina have pasts they are running from, and Pie Town isn't nearly as welcoming as its name sounds.

There are interesting outcomes all around by the time the final pages of the book are read (there may even be some pie in Pie Town's future), and it was a true joy of a book to read.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Dragon Tattoo and Holmes

I finally got out to see the American version of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo yesterday, and it was as good as the Swedish version.  The casting was completely spot on.  Rooney Mara was fantastic as Lisbeth Salander, and the character of Lisbeth is such a fascinating one.  She is tough and smart, but has a tenderness at her core.  At the end of the movie I felt such sadness for her, as she had started to bloom with happiness and then her happiness is dashed. 

Daniel Craig inhabited the role of investigative journalist.  He wore glasses (and jeans) with style, and I love a man who appreciates a cat as a housemate. 

Sweden looked gorgeous throughout.  I would like to spend some time in that cabin for a retreat, although perhaps not in winter. 

The one negative is that I thought the beginning credits portion was too long and tried too hard to be cool.  I think they were going for an opening like the James Bond movies, but I didn't think it made sense or added anything to the very good movie that followed it.

On the reading front, I just finished the latest Laurie R. King novel, Pirate King, from her series featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes.  The entire series is very entertaining, starting with The Beekeeper's Apprentice.  This novel has both pirates and moviemaking in its early days, providing plenty of drama to keep things interesting, not to mention Mary Russell rope climbing walls in the dark of night.

Both Lisbeth Salander and Mary Russell are fascinating female characters, with intelligence and hidden strengths that allowed them to overcome hard childhoods.  Different time periods, different countries, similarly intriguing women.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Always Learning

As I look out at the rain today, I'm happy to be indoors, warm and dry.  I'm working my way through online courses at, currently brushing up on skills in Word and Excel and learning Access and Visio.  Who knows what I may choose to learn after that.  This is a free online educational website out of Ireland, and the teachers have lovely Irish accents which makes learning that much more fun.

I'm frankly surprised I haven't explored online learning options sooner, relying on employer-provided software training specific to my job.  I always like to know how to solve software issues after the IT folks have gone home - because you know computers wait to cause problems until they know you are alone at the keyboard with no backup.

Learning new things keeps the synapses limber and builds confidence.  I highly recommend it!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

2012 - A Fresh Start

Happy New Year, everyone!

I'm not much of a New Year's Eve reveler (actually, not at all), but I certainly do appreciate the beginning of a fresh new year, especially since last year was a bit of a rough slog for many of us. 

I'm thankful that people who appreciate handmade and joyfully crocheted items are finding my Etsy shop and sending me regularly to Sip and Ship to send off crocheted treats to new homes.  I'm also thankful for the customer feedback which lets me better serve my customers.  For instance, egg cozies like to travel in pairs! 

Here's the first pair of egg cozies created with that important bit of information.

Enjoying the sun on December 31st
I'm happy to report that Seattle-dwellers have been blessed with sunshine for the last day of 2011 and the first day of 2012.  I am enthusiastic about this fresh opportunity to enjoy many walks around Seattle, begin a new job (which I'm still seeking), and learning new things on every front.  I wish fresh adventures for us all!