Friday, July 18, 2014

New Glasses

This week sure did fly by. We've been having thunderstorms every afternoon this week and the humidity has been through the roof. It's very unsual for this area to get high humidity. We live  at the base of the Sierras and are considered a high desert. The humidity has been bad enough that both Jesse and I have had a horrible time sleeping this week. We have the fan running and that's helped a bit but not much. I do love watching the clouds roll in and hearing the thunder but I'm not much for humidity. Hopefully it'll dry out soon so we can get some sleep.

A few weeks ago, Jess and I attended Reno Rockabilly Riot. This year it was held at John Ascuaga's Nugget Casino. It was a few more miles north of Reno. It was a lot more compact and had a lot more shopping. I liked it. You didn't need to walk all over the casino to watch the burn out contests or catch the performers. It was windy so my hair got a little fussed. I need to buy myself a nice purse comb/brush for instances like that.

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I made this skirt from a vintage perm-press flat sheet. If anyone ever wants to make themselves a cheap circle skirt, buy thrifted flat sheets in full size. You get enough fabric for a full skirt and have plenty of fabric left over for a matching bolero or top.

This is a shot from a few weeks back. I have been trying to do my hair whenever I remember to set it. I enjoy doing my hair. even if it's just for running errands. I keep my makeup to a minimum whenever I'm just running errands. I only wear make up for special occasions.

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I finally got new glasses! I was bummed when I found out that my optometrist wouldn't take the risk for putting new lenses in. I really like those glasses and I might turn them in sunglasses. I bought these online from  Jesse found them online and noticed that they have a lot of cat-eye glasses. It was easy to order and pay. I love them. They are comfortable and exactly what I wanted. Now I don't have to squint to see. You can tell I look tired from lack of sleep.
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 I haven't done a lot of knitting lately. I've been in another one of my funks where I can't really pick up anything for too long. I still have a circle skirt that needs to be hemmed and add a waist band to. I did however manage to start and finish this hat and mittens. I love my fingerless gloves but in the dead winter when the temperature doesn't reach past 38*F, mittens are called for.

I used my vintage dead-stock Fleischer's wool yarn for both of these projects. It was an easy knit but I did have to fiddle with the pattern a bit. I had to increase the rim to 90 stitches instead of 72 and for the body of the hat I had to add a few more repeats. Nothing major, but like I've always said, I like to tweak patterns to fit the way I like.

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These mittens were also an easy knit. I knitted these in the round. I try to avoid seams if I can. Makes the project a lot smoother and better fitting.

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This afghan I made from nothing but left over yarn. I had a couple of gallon size ZipLock bags filled with left over yarn balls. Yarn left over from other knitting and crochet projects. I used up most of the yarn but still have half a bag left. I may make a yarn ball wreath for Christmas decoration.
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I haven't really done much thrifting in the last few weeks. It's been a bit dry out there. I did buy a few nice items.I found these beauty at a local thrift store for $3.00 It's a needlepoint purse and roomy to boot. I have run across a few of these but they were always in bad condition or too pricey.

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This is my second Butterfly Gold piece. I love small mixing bowls for snacking. I also have a small fridgie in this pattern. Fridgies are awesome for storing cut up onions. No smelliness in the fridge.  I got this small bowl for $1.00

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This was pretty hard to photograph. It's a sheer ivory scarf with flocked navy blue dots. I love scraves but have a heck of a time keeping them on my head. I bought this vintage piece for 50 cents.

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How precious is this? It a handmade glove holder. It has an old Goody pin curl clip as the means to hold the gloves together. I really come across things like this. It's so unique and wonderful. I've been thinking about adding a brooch back and turning it into a brooch .

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Lastly, these babies have been living under our porch. They are barn swallows and are ready to fly. I think one of them may have already taken flight. I have never lived somewhere where I could see them hatch and grow up. It's so neat. I read online that if you leave the nest up, the parents or children will come back. So I'm definitely leaving it up.

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I hope everyone has a great weekend.

Friday, June 20, 2014

A Great Little Getaway

We're back! We had a great mini getaway with our families. We drove down on Wednesday afternoon after I picked up Jesse from work. I don't know if it was the coffee, the Adam Corolla podcasts or just the excitement to see our families, but the drive down didn't feel like the 8.5 hours that it usually is. It flew by. There wasn't much traffic for 3/4 of the drive until we got into Southern California. We got to my mom's house around midnight.

 We spent most of the following  day just relaxing at my mom's house  and hanging out with my younger brother. Jesse got to spend some quality time with his brother-in-law and taught him how to use a car tester. I spent most of the day trying to knit this hat. It's a simple pattern but I like the ribbing to be a bit looser. Needless to say, I didn't get much work on it done.

My sister's graduation went off without a hitch and was relatively quick considering there were 608 graduating seniors. We were only able to take a few quick photos before the mad dash to collect diplomas ennsued. Afterwards we went to dinner and had some great Chinese food.

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I had my hair done up very nicely but the wind pretty much destroyed it. Well at least it wasn't hot for the ceremony.

Friday, we went out to breakfast at IHOP. Something I've always enjoyed with my mom. In truth, I just love spending time with my mom and food only makes it better. After breakfast we went to a couple of thrift stores. It was in  one of those out-of-the-way places. I bought a couple of vintage necklaces.

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I love this vintage shell and stone necklace. Now to make a tiki or tropical themed dress.

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I also found a bunch of vintage patterns; some of them still factory folded. Also, these are all vintage size 20 which is pretty amazing in itself. I also figured out that most, if not all, of these patterns were owned by the same lady.

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Next we went to the local Salvation Army. I have noticed that the Salvation Armys out in California are a lot better than Nevada. However, the GoodWills are a lot better here.

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I have often admired the vintage crocheted hangars I often see online. I've even tried to make a couple myself but never really like the result. The couple of times I've run across them, the thrift stores have wanted $2 or $3 each. So when I saw this bundle of 6 for $2.55, I jumped on it. ANd I got an additional 40% off.

 How cool is this brooch? It's like double the good luck. Funny enough, I bought this last Friday which landed on the 13th and had  a full moon. I got it for $3 and it's a vintage Gerry's. I have a few from this brand and I love them.

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Another awesome thing I bought was this planter/bowl. It has the signature of the artist on the bottom but I haven't been able to figure it out.

I also did a little shoe shopping. Northern Nevada sadly lacks cute, flat shoes. Stripper heels and sky high wedges there's plenty around. I don't buy full price shoes very often so this was a rare occasion. Not to mention that I spend most of my day bare foot. Can I just say that I love ankle and T-straps. They are so cute and feminine. I probably wont be able to wear these once the weather turns cold and wet but I'll try to wear them while I can.

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Friday night, we had dinner with my in-laws. Pickup Stix. Oh that is one of the things we look forward to when we travel down south. So good and very fresh food. My mother-in-law gave me this Daisy Fuentes star burst brooch. Isn't it pretty. I love it.

Saturday morning we went to the Costa Mesa swap meet. This trip, I made a list of the things I wanted to buy/do. It was really helpful in not buying this that I didn't need. I kept to the list and was very proud of myself.

I have really grown to love cacti and succulents. They are so hardy and grow practically anywhere. There are also very cute and pretty. I like having plants in the house but I'm not good with them like my mom is.  One of my main purchases at the swap meet were succulents.

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I bought all these tiny babies for a dollar a piece. I would have bought more but these were the ones that  really stood out for me.

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This pot was $3.99 and has at least 6 different of succulents. And the guy I bought it from was totally awesome. He talked to his plants like they were his babies.

My mother-in-law is also a succulent enthusiast and she gave me a ton of her succulents and a couple of Aloe Vera clippings. This is one of the arrangements I made with the clippings she gave me. I love the way this turned out. I have a lot more planted but that will be for another post.

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Our last trip for the weekend was to the local Japanese market. It one of my favorite stops. Once again, I made a list and we bought items I use to cook with. I stocked up on our favorite miso paste,  curry paste, seaweed, sauces, dashi stocks, ramen, noodles and a few other condiments. Jesse got some of his favorite yakisoba noodles too.

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I also bought a few bowls and a tea cup for myself. love these smalls bowls. They're great for snacks and cereal.

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Well that's the last of our loot from our trip. It was a really great trip. We spent some quality time with Jesse's grandparents which was really nice since they can't travel anymore and are in poor health. They both loved their blankets I made them and used them the entire time were there.We  spent some fun times with our families and had a great drive down there and back up. I think the key to enjoying ourselves and our families is to NOT plan a billion things to do. It's hard not to want to do everything you miss while visiting but having (and sticking) to a few things worked out better for us.


                         I hope everyone has a great weekend. Looks like it'll be a nice one out here.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

It's been Crochet for Me Lately

Hello my dear readers. It seems I've been off the radar yet again. Time always seems to slip by me a lot quicker than I realize. It's not as if I'm so busy that I don't have the time to blog. It's just that my life is very routine. Some people might find it boring and trying but for the most part I love it. For close to ten years, I ran a small business. It's absorbed my every waking (and sometimes sleeping) moments. It's was a lot of work and stress. I miss it sometimes but I love being a housewife more.

I'm in the middle of cleaning house and making house. My younger sister is graduating high school next week. We also plan to  visit the rest of the family while were are down there and do a little shopping. Well, I plan to do some shopping. Whenever we go to So Cal, I try to get things I can't buy in Northjern Nevada. One of my must visit stops is Mitsuwa, a Japanese market. I buy several good there like miso paste, curry paste, pickled ginger, spices, and a few snacks.

Since we are also visiting Jesse's family, I decided to make his grandmother a lap blanket. A few posts ago, I made his grandpa a lap blanket of his own. Figured it would only be fair to make her one too.

I really love the way this blanket turned out. The colors and the texture of it are just perfect. It's a rectangular blanket. I have a hard time figuring out how wide and long to make a blanket but this pattern makes it easy to figure out.
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A few weeks ago we had a freak weather pattern, we got some rain and snow. It was nice. It rained for almost two days which is unheard of in Northern Nevada. I got into a crocheting mood and made myself another blanket. I had to recreate the pattern myself. It was a really fun and easy project.

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I bought this a month or so ago off of eBay. I am not one to wear crop tops, but they will make great bodices. I just need to add a longer midriff piece. I've also come to terms with the fact that I can't make a top that I like. If it has sleeves, I'm happy. Anything sleeveless, tank top or halter top? Just can't get it to work. I'm hoping to find a pattern or two that I like. 

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I just wanted everyone to know I was still alive and kicking. I still need to plan my outfits while visiting and finish cleaning the house. Not sure if anyone else does this, but I like to leave the house clean whenever we visit family. Less work for me  when we get back.

I leave you with a photo of Ridley looking stoned. Jesse doesn't like that I said that but I think it's funny. I hope everyone has a great week and weekend.

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Friday, May 2, 2014

Happy New Yea's 2014

Well dear readers, it's already two weeks into the New Year and  I finally got my new laptop. I just got it tonight; thankfully in one piece and no damage.  Its been nice taking a break from the internet but I did miss reading everyone's posts. I had free reign on my husband's laptop but I'm not much of Mac person.

In these past weeks I was busy making presents for the families and trying to catch up on a few projects and adding news ones. I had a great visit from my mom and nephews. Spent a quiet new years at home. Did some thrift and a bit of sewing.

Im not sure that I did this last year but this year I am planning New Years Goals not resolutions. To me, the word resolutions has a negative connotation attached to it whenever New Years rolls around. I know that 75% of my resolutions have fallen to the side and I have felt very bad about myself for not completing them. Goals, you can work at a steady pace and not feel like you bad if you get side tracked.

My goals for 2014:

1) Knit at least one garment. I have tried on several occasions to start a project only to notice that they are too big. I need to check my gauge more often.

2) Have more self confidence. I love wearing vintage-inspired/retro clothing. I have a ton of skirts that I don't wear because I'm afraid  that it wont be flattering. I want to wear what I want and not be weighed down but what goes on in my head.

3) Learn to grade patterns. I have a lot of vintage patterns from the 1950s. However, I'm not (or will I ever be) a 36" bust. I want to learn to grade up so I can make and wear some of the awesome blouse and dress patterns I have.

4) Keep up on house chores.  I've gotten a lot better at doing chores  since getting married and getting our own place. But I still HATE to fold and put away clothes. It is the chore that I will put off as much as I can. I want to get better at putting them away and the dishes.

5) Be happy with who I am. This one sounds so easy but it sure as heck  isn't. I'm getting better at being comfortable with myself but I still need more work.

There you have it. Some simple goals. I may add more as the year advances but for now they'll do.  Hopefully I'll be making a few more posts now that I have a laptop of my own.  I hope everyone has a wonderful week.

Friday, April 25, 2014

My Knitting and April's Thrift Haul

Well it's the end of the month and this one sure did fly by. I had a pleasant break from the hum-drum of my everyday life last week. My mom and nephew drove up and spend a few days with me. I say me because Jesse was away the whole week for work. I'm okay with him going away for business but  it does get lonely in the evening for Ridley and I. Well, at least this time Ridley did jump me.  The first time Jess went away, Ridley was really upset and decided to attack my arm to let me know. Luckily, I didn't scar.

My mom decided she needed a break and drove up for a few days of R &R. For us that usually means thrift stores and eating. We had a great time. We tried a new pho place in Carson City and I really liked it. The food is fresh and MSG free. Also they have some bomb steamed pork buns. We also saw Captain Americe: Winter Soldier. That was a great movie. It was action filled and had a great plot.

Needless to say, I had a blast with my mom and nephew.  I get very home sick sometimes and don't really know how to deal with it. I start to get a bit depressed and want to see my family. I'm hoping that we'll be able drive down to So Cal for my sister's high school graduation. It would be nice to see the rest of the family  and do a little shopping.  Okay, maybe a lot of shopping. I try and take advantage of all the awesomeness that is So Cal. I try and stock up on Japanese food staples like miso, curry, pickled veggies, and ramen (among other things). My mother in law has been awesome and gotten us stuff before too.

Here's my first vintage elf on a log. This sucker is heavy. It's a solid piece of wood. I found him hidden under a ton of Christmas items at the Goodwill in Reno. His hat is a little faded and the Merry Christmas sign is broken but I think he'll make Christmas more fun.

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I got this vintage St. Thomas wallet for 50 cents. Some of the fabric is cracked at the joints but I think a bit of nailpolish will fix it up. I really like this wallet because of its compact size. It'll fit perfectly in a small evening purse. It had a coin purse, a bill holder and a couple of slots for IDs/ATM card/ credit card.

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How cute and kitsch is this planter? It still has the maker sticker on the bottom. I don't usually buy planters but I had to have this one. No chips or cracks and I think it was used as a pencil holder too. There are a bunch of graphite marks on the inside. I figure I'll buy a succulent plant and add it to my kitchen windowsill collection.

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Anytime I go to thrift stores, I always look for circular knitting needles (left) and double pointed needles (right). I bought this lot for $4.25 Which( if you are a knitter or crocheter) you know is a steal. There were a lot of needles that day but I only buy the sizes I don't have. I also bought a hand press (used to steam flat seams and edges) for $2.00

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Oh, how I love straw bags and purses! I bought this one for under $2 and it's in excellent condition. I love the top design on this but I may need to change the tiny straw handle. I just need to figure out with what and how.

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Last year I saw a bunch of girls post photos of their Christmas cards using these tiny clothes pins. Aren't they cute? I bought  this dead stock package for 10cents. I love how cheap some items are in rural areas.

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This jacket is perfect for the chilly Autumn days. I often have a hard time dressing casual whenever we go out to run errands. I think this will work perfect. Besides, I love front pockets on jackets and sweaters.

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Another thing I look for and won't pass up (if priced right) when out thrifting is yarn. Especially vintage wool yarn. Fleisher's yarn is one of the brands I often see in vintage knitting books and have never come across. I bought 4 skeins of yarn for $2.00 .  I may make a pair of mittens and a matching hat.

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 Another package of yarn for 99 cents. Not sure what I'm going to make with it but I'm sure I'll use it in no time.
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I haven't bought any brooches in a while.I often come across some very big and very gaudy brooches that are over priced. This brooch was a dollar and as cute as a button. I love the tiny spoon and rhinestone details.

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This is my first pair of vintage rhinestone earrings. They have screw backs which I don't like too much but the glitter and shine they provide is gorgeous. Now to make a nice dress to wear them out with.

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I have been on a knitting binge for the last few weeks. I have been "craving" matching or co-coordinating hat and scarf sets. I don't know how or why the idea started but it's taken over. I made myself this hat and scarf set a couple of weeks back. I bought the  yarn at Goodwill and bought the only  two matching skeins. If there had been more of this color, I would have bought it all up. Can I just say,  I love the key hole scarfs. They give you all the warmth of a scarf without the added bulk. They are easy to knit and look so chic with coats and jackets.

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This second set I knitted for my mom. She's always cold and hates long scarfs, so I made her  a shorter version of the scarf. I did add a small pom to the top of the hat. It's the same color as the scarf.
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This is the second time I've knit this pattern and I totally love it. It's super easy to memorize and has a wonderful leaf pattern. I did alter the pattern to include a thumb gusset. Now I want to knit one in every color I can.
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I haven't been in a sewing mood lately. I tried to make a pouch the other day and it had some issues. I think I'll wait until I'm not so tired to try again. I want to make more tops and dress but just don't have the drive. I'm hoping I can knit my nephew a stuffed dinosaur for his birthday. I want to knit him a stuffed cat too but I guess we'll see how things go.

I hope everyone has a great weekend. I leave you with this photo of Ridley sleeping and being cute.

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Monday, April 7, 2014

YouTube: What I'm Watching

Hello my dear readers. I hope everyone had a great weekend. We spent some time working on our backyard and had of first BBQ of the season yesterday. Yay! The wind finally calmed down enough to start the grill up. Wind is a huge factor for us because we love to use our charcoal grill and don't want to risk embers flying up and starting a fire.

Today I wanted to let all of you into my YouTube world. The videos and channels I subscribe to. I truly love YouTube. It can be a helpful place. You can find almost anything you want to learn or do there. I learned to knit from using many of the helpful tutorial on YouTube. I still use it to learn new techniques or refresh my memory.

Today I will show you some of my favorite channels. They aren't all vintage/retro inspired but I thoroughly enjoy them.

A Vintage Vanity: This is a chnnel hosted by Jennifer. She has awesome tutorials on vintage/retro hair, a sewing serious and talks about her life and he hobbies. She is really fun and her videos are easy and helpful. I love all of her videos and am always eager for the next one.

Cooking With Dog  I love this show. If you love Japanese food and a cute dog mascot named Francis this show is for you. Chef and Francois will walk you through many authenic Japanese meals and desserts.

Lisa Fremont Street  Im sure a lot of vintage/retro gals have come across Ashley's channel at one point or another. Here is a lady that works her butt off, bringing  us great hair tutorials, product reviews, VLV tips, and makeup reviews. She has a lot of cute and fancy hair tutorials.

RunnyRunny999 RunnyRunny is a Japanese man who started making how to videos for fun. He makes great easy meals and is very entertaining too.

CherryDollFace Cherry is another awesome lady who does hair and makeup tutorials. She's easy to follow and has a great personality too. I particularly love the winged eyeliner tutorial of hers. Here eyebrow tutorial is also good.

These are a few of the channels I look forward to whenever I check out my YouTube feed. Do you have any favorite channels. Let me know in the comments.

I hope everyone's week goes well and is a good one.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Spring Has Sprung and I've Been Cleaning

A couple of weeks ago we went out to dinner and saw 300: Rise of and Empire. I forgot to post my outfit for the night. I really enjoyed dinner with my husband. The movie was okay. It was very action packed but it left me feeling king blah at the end of it. It seemed to me that the plot needed more depth and character development.

 Dress: Made by me
Shrug : Torrid    
Bangles: Vintage Lucite 
                 and modern plastic
 Earrings: Vintage faux pearl clip-ons

Over the last couple of weeks, I haven't had much inspiration for making or knitting much. I think I'm a little burnt out from knitting the capelet for my aunt and the hoodie for my nephew. I enjoyed making those items since they are both challenging and new.

I have gotten three small projects done over the last couple of weeks. I made a small pair of curtains for the kitchen. I've had this fabric for a few years just waiting to be turned into something cute. I had about a yard and a half left over. It took me a little over an hour from start to finish.

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If I had had a few yards of this fabric I would have turned it into a circle skirt or a sun dress.

In our last visit to So Cal, my mother-in-law gave us this ottoman. It was Jess's grandmother's back in the day. I often use it when I do my hair and make up. It's this weird  yellow color and vinyl. One thing about me: I love the smell and feel of leather/vinyl but not in furniture. I always stick to it . I love vintage mustard color but this one is kinda bland. So, I made a cover.  I bought this fabric at a thrift store a few months back without knowing what to do with it. This was also a surprisingly easy project. An hour, hour and a half at the most and nothing special. I may re-make it in the future but for now I'm happy with it.

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A few weeks ago, Jess's grandfather began chemo and radiation treatment. He's doing well and my mother-in-law is helping them out.  I decided to make him a nice lap blanket to help him through it. I love to crochet blankets/afghans. This was an easy and fun project. It's my first one-piece rectangular blanket.

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I'm sure Grandpa will like colors. He's an All-American kinda guy.

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This week has also seen me cleaning the house like crazy. I cleaned both bathrooms and the kitchen. Every year, I try and go through everything we own and rearrange what we use and donate or throw away what we don't used/need. I actually looked forward to cleaning the house now. I also did a lot of yard work. I cleaned out  and weeded both of our flowers beds over the last weekend. I have never been prouder of  clean dirt. I plan on laying down some brown mulch and leave space to plant some drought resistant flowers.

I also sat down and re-arranged my earring and brooch collection. I love being able to see and re-discover new pairs of earrings that have been hiding in my jewelry box. These are some of my more showy pairs.

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Here's are most of my brooches. I love this collection. They range from the 1940's to present day. I've made a few of them myself. And some of them my mother-in-law gave them to me.
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The rest of my earring collection. I'm sure my husband will say that I have plenty of earrings and don't need anymore. Oh, how wrong he is. We can never have enough accessories.

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These are on the second level of the jewelry box. Bits and bobs that I love but don't show well.

 I still need to go through my purse and shoe collection. I need to see what items I use and which I don't.  I should buy a shoe rack too so I can easily access and see my shoes.  We're going to Reno this weekend to clean my rings (insurance purposes) and we're also going to look at furniture. All of our couches and chairs are broken.  The recliner chair broke at the begining of the week and Ridley has been upset. Since I can't stretch my legs out enough, it means Ridley can't lay on my lap. Spoiled cat. 

Oh, I hope we can find some cool vintage sofas or couches. I love vintage furniture because it was made to last and the fabric designs are just neat. It's be great if I could find some mid-century furniture at a great price but that remains to be seen.

I hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!