Friday, March 31, 2006
Sorry for the absence. Computer problems which are sorted now. I don't have time to write a proper entry just now but will try to soon.
Friday, March 24, 2006
I saw this meme on Rene's blog and couldn't help but copy it. Here is what you do. Type in your birth year on google and then search under images. Chose a photo that you like and then attach it to your blog. I tag everyone for this. The first photo is from a University campus and the bottom half is inside the computer lab. I liked this image because it just screamed 70's. Well, it did to me anyway. The second image is of US floods in 1979. I just really liked this image of a lighthouse.
I have been bad and have done no stitching on my rota. On Tuesday I pulled out Wizards potion and began working away. After a few rows of stitches I noticed that something wasn't quite right. Turns out that the paw I stitched last time is out by one stitch. It means I have to unpick his whole paw as it has too big an effect on his robes not to. Frustrated I tossed it aside. I have been feeling the spring. The air just seems fresher and with the days getting longer too it finally feels like winter is over. So I wanted to stitch something that fit my mood. I was flicking through old editions of magazines when I spotted this freebie from the last ed of Cross Stitch Card Shop. I had been planning on stitching a country companions design for my mum but who could resist little souffle (just as well since two years ago I stitched a cc design for mothers day).
I remember San mentioning that the freebie kits are now calling on stitching with one strand instead of two. This one was like that and it was the first one I had to do that with. The good thing about it was that there was now no chance of running out of thread (which I always seem to do with freebie kits). I also liked the way it looked. More delicate, more spring like! Does that make sense? Hopefully my mum will like it.
The spring feeling hasn't went away and I haven't felt much like going back to my rota. So I have decided to make some Easter cards for my nieces. It's not something I usually do so it will be a nice surprise for them (I hope). I will also look out a card to make for my sister. Don't want her to feel left out!
Thanks for all your comments regarding the snowmen. Since everyone liked the name Ernie so much then Grandson one will now be called Ernie. Nothing much else has been going on. I have been very tired over the last few days. After I stitched the mothers day card and looked for some Easter designs I have really done nothing much else. I have been sleeping a lot and then reading. I also finally bought up all the cross stitch magazines I usually get. I was a bit behind in them and have spent the last few days reading through them. I also decided to start my first subscription to Cross Stitch Card Shop. It is my favourite of them all.
Tuesday, March 21, 2006
Lili, I use a hoop. I tried using a frame but I just couldn't get comfortable stitching with it. So I stuck to the hoop. It probably just takes getting used to but I wasn't patient enough to do that. I also take photo's of my progress. I used to scan them but the quality isn't the same. My sister then passed on her old digital camera on to me. And them finally last year I treated myself to a brand new one. It has yet to be used for anything much more than my stitching.
I got to watch "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" while I was stitching. I really enjoyed it in the cinema. This is the first time that I have ever watched something at home months later and thought "it just isn't the same". I was actually really disappointed. I think part of it was the people I was watching it with. My mum and sister were watching it for the first time. Both of them have enjoyed the other films but didn't seem to enjoy this one. My sister even fell asleep. Maybe it was my expectation of them enjoying the film as much as I did that was disappointed rather than the film itself. When I get some peace I will watch it on my own and see.
Monday, March 20, 2006
Bugs & Firefly Fairies
I finished the bottom part of the border on bugs and I am now on to the second corner. The stitching is going slower than I thought it would. It is a little frustrating but I will persevere with it. Plus I do like the way the border looks. It also makes the design seem smaller. I will be working on the border for the next few weeks. I think it will take longer than I initially thought to stitch.
Yesterday I worked on the Firefly fairies. I have almost finished with one shade of the dress. This one feels like it is stitching quite quickly although I actually spent less time on it. I like working with colour I think that might be the reason. There is still quite a bit to go on this fairy so it will be a while yet before I finish her.
Today I am back to the snowmen. With any luck I will have a face to show you tomorrow (thanks for all your comments on the snowmen). Tomorrow will also be spent on Wizard potions. It feels like it has been a while since I did any work on him.
Saturday, March 18, 2006
"Walk the Line"
I have been dying to see "Walk the Line" since I first saw it advertised. I'm not a Johnny Cash fan but I am a fan of Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon. I finally got to see the film this week and I really enjoyed it. You don't have to be a fan of the music to really enjoy it. It is really a love story. Johnny's love for his brother, music and then June Carter. Then if you are like me you might grow to like the music. I found it really catchy and had to go out and buy the soundtrack. I couldn't believe that it was really Phoenix who was singing on those tracks. Reese was easier to recognise. I have since bought an album by Johnny Cash and I'm also considering buying his autobiography which is supposed to be really good. If you haven't seen the film then I highly recommend it.
Hi Lili, I think the only snowmen you will see from me this year are of the stitched variety. Yep, I actually managed to do some stitching yesterday. The sign is now completely finished with the snow on top of it. I stitched the second little bird on gramps' hat. Then I stitched the hat of grandson #2 and about half his face. I hope to finish his face on my next snowman day which will be Monday. Today I am going to do some more stitching and I will be working on Bugs. So look out for another update either tomorrow or Monday.
Friday, March 17, 2006
Berts Last Wave Goodbye!
This really is the last photo of Bert. As you can see it started snowing again but it didn't last long. As soon as the sun came out the snow was gone within half an hour. It did snow again later in the day but the ground was too wet for it to stay. With any luck Bert will be reincarnated somewhere else in the world.
"A Wild Sheep Chase" by Haruki Murakami
The narrator has just divorced his wife and found a new girl friend. It is then his life takes an unexpected turn. He is contacted by the secretary of the boss, a man who has a hand in everything, and is sent on a wild sheep chase. All because his friend sent him a photo of sheep. Amongst those sheep is one which shouldn't exist and the narrator is told to find it. If he doesn't his life could be ruined. His new girlfriend goes with him to find a sheep with only a vague idea of what area it can be found in and next to no idea of why it is so important.
This is one of the first Murakami books to be translated into English and I have found it to be just as enjoyable as the others. I read once that Murakami uses the main character as a way for other characters to tell stories. The narrator in this leads an unremarkable life and works as a translator in the publishing industry. It isn't until he is sent on this chase that his life becomes interesting and it is the stories of the people he meets along the way that make it remarkable. If you want to try something different I definitely recommend Murakami. This one is probably one of the best to start with.
"Power in the Weaving" by Tamora Pierce.
Four young people in different parts of the world are in trouble of some sort. A mage collects them all and brings them to the winding circle temple. These potential mages are different from the other students. Their powers are hidden deep within them and seem to work around one type of magic only. They have trouble fitting in and so they are brought together where they must learn how to use their own gifts and learn to work with each other.
This is set in the same world as other series by Tamora Pierce. It is different from the others in that it deals with the mage side of things only. The outside world doesn't really concern the winding circle unless it is brought to them. I actually enjoyed the fact that it was a little different from the others. I still have difficulty separating this world and the one created by Mercedes Lackey. If you enjoy Mercedes Lackey then I think you will enjoy Tamora Pierce.
"The Power of the Storm" by Tamora Pierce.
This book sees the young mages becoming closer. They are beginning to work together more and can sense when one of the is in trouble. Now they must learn more control. Tris, the mage with the power over weather, almost learns this the hard way. Before anything can be done about it the winding circle is attacked by Pirates. The young mages go to extreme lengths in order to save their new home.
Book 2 is just as good as the first one. A very easy read but enjoyable. Worth reading if you like fantasy and want to try something light. You can find Tamora Pierce's website here.
Lili, I think King uses that for the shock. Our society sees nothing more important than the protection of our children. So when one is hurt in King's books it just makes it all the more shocking. He uses it to engage the reader in the cell too. The main character is desperate to get home to protect his son.
Zohrah, it's a shame your library doesn't stock as many fantasy books. David Eddings was the first fantasy author I read and I really enjoyed them. I use images in my head when I am reading. I find it really difficult not to. Sometimes I think it is one of the reasons why it is difficult to put a book down.
Timewarden, I have seen the Stand. I can't remember if I had read the book first or if it was after. Either way I enjoyed it. It has been years since I have seen it though. There is an illustrated edition of "The Stand" which I am tempted to get and soon to be an illustrated edition of "Salem's Lot".
Thursday, March 16, 2006
"The Eye of the World" by Robert Jordan
It has been a hard winter in the village of Two Rivers. It has been going on longer than normal and the wolves are now attacking people. The village though is determined to still carry out their spring festival if only to give them some hope. Everyone is excited as a storyteller and a mysterious woman has come to their village. They are then attacked by Trollocks working for the dark lord. Young Rand and his friends find that they are after them and must leave the village with the woman and her guard if they want to survive. But most of all they must leave in order to save the village.
This is book one of a series of about 13. I have to admit that I got bored half way through book one. The characters seemed get to an area only to be chased again. You knew that as soon as they settled for a night or two that this was going to happen. It is quite a large book and at one point I almost gave up as there seemed to be no end in sight. There are a lot of Robert Jordan fans out there so there must be something about this book that is appealing. Sadly I couldn't see it and I doubt that I will ever pick up the others.
"Cell" by Stephen King
It is a beautiful day. Clayton is ready to go home after successfully finalling a deal which will mean the end of financial difficulties for his families. He has other family problems but they don't look so bad on such a lovely day. And that's when things begin to go horribly wrong. People all over the world begin visciously attacking each other or kill themselves. All because they were talking on their cell phone. Clay, Tom and Alice are thrown together in order to survive. Clay's only concern is to get back home and stop his son from using that little red phone he got for his birthday.
I have been looking forward to this books coming out since I first heard about it. Over the last few years Kings books haven't been up to his usual standard. However, this one was supposed to go back to the likes of "The Stand". I wasn't disappointed either. He has left out a lot of the padding he normally added which only adds to the joy of this book. And trust me you will think twice before answering you phone after you have read it. If you like Kings older works you will enjoy this. You can find his website here.
"Assassin's Apprentice" by Robin Hobb
Fitz is the bastard child of the future King. He is taken in by the Kings man and looked after by him. Burrich teaches Fitz everything he knows about animals not realising that Fitz already has a magical link with them. When he is old enough he begins his training as one of the royals. He will never truly be one of them but the King puts plans into place that will make use of Fitz. Fitz is to become a royal assassin and will soon face great danger as he goes on his first mission.
I have to admit that I was pleasantly surprised with this book. I had heard nothing but good things about the series. However, the thought of reading about assassin's didn't appeal to me. The majority of it is spent describing Fitz life as he grows up. Assassin is just another interesting part of his life which becomes more important later in the book. I recommend it for any fan of fantasy. You can find Robin Hobb's website here.
Look out for more reviews tomorrow. No stitching I'm afraid. I'm glad that everyone enjoyed seeing Bert. He did live a good life (if a short one). We normally don't get enough snow to build snowmen either. Maybe that's a sign that Bert was meant to be.
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Say Goodbye Bert!
Monday, March 13, 2006
For all I hate snow I actually went out playing in it yesterday. My sister and I made our first snowman in years. This is Bert the gay, koala like, snowman. Poor Bert wasn't created until after it had already been raining. So the snow wouldn't roll properly. Instead he was made with a pile and pack technique. The potato was all we could find for a nose which sadly fell off a few hours later. And despite his pink scarf and multi coloured hat my sister still insisted Bert was a he. He is actually doing better than all of his friends dotted down the street. There is a snowman mass murderer here on the loose. They others have all been decapitated. Bert's head is now sunken back in the distress of losing his friends (that and the fact that the snow is starting to melt).
This is what our back garden looked like before we rampaged through it. As you can see there was a strong wind while it was snowing as we have a mini snow drift. My mum is worried for some of her plants. She has a feeling that they won't survive the snow. It also doesn't show the bird madness that took place for most of the day. The garden was filled with them fighting over the nuts. The bread we put out didn't last five minutes. Mr and Mrs Robin even made an appearance and the other birds normally scare them away.
I did actually get some stitching done. I stitched the head of pink firefly fairy. She looks as if she has been scalped. It's actually her crown that is missing as it is made up of beads. Once I finished her head I decided to go back to her dress. I am now just going to work on the bulk of the dress one colour at the time. You can see from the dark pink at the bottom that I have already made a start on that. Once the bulk of the dress is finished I can go back and fill in the rest and then do the beadwork. This will be my last stitching update for the week as have to spend the rest of the week concentrating on studying. So I won't be blogging much either. I will do that promised book review at some point in the week but I can't promise more than that. I will still be keeping up with everyone's blogs though. I hope that everyone has a good week.
Sunday, March 12, 2006
I didn't get much done on the snowman stocking. I did finish off filling in the white of the sign. However, you can't really see that in the photo which is why I haven't bothered taking an update photo.
I finished off the marble post that bugs is leaning on and then made a start on the border. I actually spent more time on him than I mean to yesterday. The border takes longer than it seems but I wanted to get one corner done. Once I finish with the black I get to go back and fill in the spaces with silver. It will be a while before I get to that stage though. I'm liking the black on the white and the pattern the border is taking. It was difficult to put down for that reason alone, it was fun watching it develop. Today it is back to the firefly fairies.
Well it is snowing here in Glasgow. It has actually been snowing for most of the night and we have a good could of inches. I didn't get up in time to take any pretty photos. People have already been out in it and kids have been playing in it. It is still snowing although very lightly. I have to confess I hate the snow. It does look good but I hate going out in it. Plus pretty snow doesn't last long here in Glasgow. It usually turns to slush in a matter of hours which I hate even more than snow. I'm praying that it will be away before I have to leave for work tomorrow. However, I know that isn't going to happen. It's the deepest it has been in a good few years.
I'm not going to end this entry on a moan. So I thought I would mention the Margaret Sherry round robin that San took part in. Most of you have probably read it yourself already but I wanted to link to the page she made for it. Definitely worth a read for anyone wanting to do a RR themselves.
Friday, March 10, 2006
I'm afraid I didn't get any work done on Bugs. Just too much to do. Yesterday I did get some work done on the Firefly fairies. You can now see the neckline of her dress and I have even began work on her neck. With any luck the next time you see this I will have her face finished. I am definitely liking the gold with the pink (looks a little more like pink now). I noticed that there are a lot of beads in there though. I am thinking of attaching the beads to each fairy as I finish each of them. Today if I have time it is back to the snowman. I am seeing a friend today so might not be able to get much done. Then tomorrow it is bugs again. I will make a point of working on bugs since he missed out the last time.
San, I only watched some of "Spirited Away" because I fell asleep. It had nothing to do with the film. I was just so tired from work I couldn't help it. I think I missed about half. The DVD was a rental and had to go back the next day. The ex refused to check it back out again as he had seen it all the way through. I will get to see it all eventually. It never occurred to me that stars would do the voice overs until I noticed that Michael Keaton is mentioned on the one about the pilot pig. The wizard is the one that cooks. I have the flying one there too. Always hoped that they would create more wizarding bears.
Lili, we call the books manga and the films anime. Not sure why other than that anime comes from animation.
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
Kim challenged us to post our favourite tea/coffee mug. So here is mine. Like Kim I got this mug because of my collection. I collect frog things. Have done since about the start of high school. I have a few other frog mugs but Kermit here is my favourite since I am also a huge muppet fan. I also have a few other Kermit mugs but this one gets used more than the others. Not sure why, it has just always been my favourite. I think it might be because of the little silhouette Kermits in the background. It also says "Think Green" on the back.
Thank you everyone for your lovely comments. Yesterday was UFO day which meant this little bear got some TLC. I finished the hat, his paws and a little section of his cloak. I was going to go on and finish it but realised I was really putting off all the black and grays of his robe. So I decided to make a start on that and leave myself some colour to look forward to. I have one just begun with the grays so I'm not bored with it yet. His little face seems to put a halt on any boredom settling in. Today I am back to Bugs. Although I have some studying to do so I'm not sure exactly how much I will get done.
Crazee4books, thanks for the tip. I have actually watched some of "Spirited Away" and enjoyed what I saw. I did want to see more but never got the chance. I will make a point of it now.
Lili, thanks for your tip too. The booklet that came along with "Pom Poko" was basically filled with adverts for more anime films. A few of them even had descriptions and one of them was the one you described. It did catch my eye at the time and I wondered if it would be good or not. I look forward to trying that one too.
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
I was only able to do a little work on the snowman. I did the lettering and the decoration inside the sign. I am now halfway through filling in the sign with white. I have to admit that the sign is the boring part of the design. Mostly because it's not the same as watching the snowmens characters evolve. And then filling in lots of white is a little dull. I am still enjoying the design though. It is just that it isn't the most interesting part. I hope to finish it next time and then I can begin on the third snowman.
Thanks for all your comments on Bugs and the firefly fairies. For those of you who aren't sure what the design is supposed to look like you can see it here. The arm and the lighter pink of the dress of the pink fairy is the section I am working on. Your right Lili, it is a Lavender & Lace design.
Kim, I know a few characters too who I think would write an interesting biography. And that's just when it came to their jobs!
Timewarden, Patrick Troughton would be a good one. He was one of the Doctors who you would think would be funny behind the character and yet all the stories say that he took his acting very seriously. It would be interesting to read about it. I haven't read John Pertwee's either. I didn't even know he had one.
I finally finished watching "Pom Poko". I really enjoyed my first taste of anime. The raccoons of the story are losing their homes to the humans. As the Forrest is being destroyed to build homes the raccoons are loosing theirs. At first they are too busy fighting each other when they are reminded of what is happening and they decide to try to put a stop to it. Forgotten by humans, raccoons have the ability to transform themselves into anything they want. They decide to relearn how to do this to scare the unwanted people away from their homes.
It's a good way of showing what is happening to the animals as we continue to destroy our natural forests. It's also a little sad but does have it's funny moments. A good choice for my first anime film. I now look forward to seeing more.
Monday, March 06, 2006
Today it is back to the snowman and I hope to get quite a bit of the sign done and tomorrow it is UFO day. Which means wizard potions will be making an appearance. I have a few days off at the end of the week so I hope to get quite a bit of stitching done in between studying.
Lili, it depends what the biography is like. If it is very personal then I imagine it would be like watching. But if it is mostly about the persons work then it becomes interesting. David Attenborough's "Life On Air" is one of my favourites. It is all about his career which had me hooked from page one. He mentions his famous brother maybe once or twice. And his family are mentioned when he is going to be away from them for so long. But that's it. When I read a biography I want to read about that persons work which is one of the reason I think that Shatner's would be interesting.
Hi natty, I think that Tom Bakers would be a good one. When I read your comment it surprised me that I hadn't read it yet.
Sunday, March 05, 2006
I watched some of "Pom Poko" last night. I would have watched it all but I was too tired and forcing myself to stay awake for it. I have enjoyed what I have watched of it so far. The narrator sounds very much like the voice of Electron from "Futurama". So I have this image of a robot telling the story and I can't get it out of my head. Oddly it hasn't put me off. I am still interested in trying manga if anyone has any advice.
Lili, I hope you enjoy your night even if you are watching a movie that doesn't appeal to you. :)
Just read on slice of scifi that William Shatner is doing a documentary for the History Chanel (I am guessing this will be US only). It will be called "How William Shatner Changed the World". I have to admit I love Shatner and would love to see this. If he had a biography I would most definitely read it. So I have a question out for you all. Is there one person out there (or was one person out there) that you wish had a biography just so that you could read it? Who is that person and why? For me it is my inner geek that cries out for Shatner to have a biography. That and he has done so many things. And there are so many different views on him as a person. I think it would make an interesting read.
Saturday, March 04, 2006
Wow, An Actual Stitching Update!
Kim, I agree about the ending of Serenity. There are actually two part of the film I didn't like which involved two of the main characters. I don't want to say too much and spoil it for people who have yet to see it.
A friend of mine is trying to get me into anime. So I have "Pom Poko" (I think that is the title) to watch. Looking forward to it if only for those cute bears on the front. I am also interested in trying Manga. So if any of you can recommend any manga titles for someone who has never read them before I would really appreciate it.
Thursday, March 02, 2006
You are autumn, self-actualized and totally
realistic. You concentrate hard on your
studies and work. People look up to your
intelligence and beauty. You look for the
deeper meaning in anything and love helping
out others. Active and accomplished, you like
to keep things organized.
Which Season Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla
Zohrah, I've done the spurting beverage through my nose a few times. It is really easy to make me laugh and a few people somehow always manage to do it after I have taken a mouthful of juice. I think it is a mechanism to stop me from choking.
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
I haven't done much in the way of stitching over the last few days. So no updates. I have been busy with studying. I have some time off next week so hopefully that will allow me to play catch up.
I did make time to watch "Serenity". For those who don't know what it is about. It is a sci fi film about a crew who will take on just about any job just to get by. Two of their crew are running from the government. River is a young girl who the government were using in their experiments and Simon, her brother, rescued her.
You don't have to watch the series to enjoy the film. But I do think that you will appreciate it more if you do. You will know the crew and know more about their background. Plus this film ties up a few loose ends from the series. This is obviously a lot faster paced than the series with a lot more action. I definitely recommend it.
( ) Crashed a friend’s car
( ) Stolen a car
(X) Been in love
(X) Been dumped
( ) Shoplifted
( ) Been fired
( ) Been in a fist fight
( ) Snuck out of your parent’s house
(X) Had feelings for someone who didn’t have them back
( ) Been arrested
( ) Gone on a blind date
( ) Lied to a friend
(X) Skipped school
(X) Seen someone die
(X) Been to Canada
( ) Been to Mexico
(X) Been on a plane
( ) Set a part of yourself on fire
(X) Eaten sushi
( ) Been skiing
( ) Met someone from the Internet
(X) Been to a concert
(X) Taken painkillers
(X) Love someone or miss someone right now
(X) Laid on your back and watched cloud shapes go by
(X) Made a snow angel
(X) Had a tea party pretend or otherwise
( ) Flown a kite
(X) Built a sand castle
(X) Gone puddle jumping
(X) Played dress up
( ) Jumped into a pile of leaves
( ) Gone sledding
(X) Cheated while playing a game
(X) Been lonely
(X) Fallen asleep at work/school
( ) Used a fake ID
(X) Watched the sun set
( ) Felt an earthquake
( ) Slept beneath the stars
(X) Been tickled
( ) Been robbed
(X) Been misunderstood
(X) Petted a reindeer/goat/kangaroo OR jackalope
(X) Won a contest
( ) Run a red light/stop sign
( ) Been suspended from school
( ) Been in a car crash?
( ) Had braces
(X) Felt like an outcast/third person?
(X) Eaten a whole pint of ice cream in one night
(X) Had deja vu
( ) Danced in the moonlite
(X) Liked the way you looked
(X) Witnessed a crime
(X) Questioned your heart
(X) Been obsessed with post-it notes
( ) Squished mud through your bare feet
(X) Been lost
(X) Been on the opposite side of the country
(X) Swam in the ocean
( ) Felt like dying
(X) Cried yourself to sleep
(X) Played cops and robbers
(X) Recently colored with crayons
(X) Sang karaoke
( ) Paid for a meal with only coins
(X) Done something you told yourself you wouldn’t
( ) Made prank phone calls
(X) Laughed until some kind of beverage came out of your nose
(X) Caught a snowflake on your tongue
(X) Danced in the rain
(X) Written a letter to Santa Claus
(X) Been kissed under the mistletoe
( ) Watched the sun rise with someone you care about
(X) Blown bubbles
( ) Made a bonfire on the beach…at the lake
( ) Crashed a party
(X) Gone roller-skating
(X) Had a wish come true
( ) Jumped off a bridge
1. What time is it? 08.50
2. How much do you love your job? I enjoy it most of the time
3. Ever steal any traffic signs? Nope
4. Favourite pie? I don't like pie - it's the pastry I don't like
5. Favorite number? 7
6. Favorite movie? I have lots of favourites
7. Favorite brand of body soap? Imperial Leather
8. Toothpaste? colgate
9. Message to your friends reading this? do the test too !
10. How do you see yourself in 10 years? Happy
11. What do you enjoy receiving? Anything with thought in it
12. What time is it now? 08.52