Sunday, March 27, 2011

10-stitch blanket

10 Stitch Blanket

So...I couldn't get it together this week to participate in either Scavenger Hunt Sunday or the Shoot & Edit challenges for the week. I have been trying to get back into a routine with Cary home, work has been overwhelming, and I just couldn't get into it this week. But I hope to next week. I have been working on a baby blanket for friends of ours. It is a fun pattern where you only ever have 10 stitches on the needle at time. Originally when I bought the yarn I thought it might be neutral enough but am now realizing it is more approriate for a girl. Since our friends don't know what they are having yet, I bought more yarn to do a second blanket if I need too. I know I will be able to give away each of them at some point anyhow.

Yesterday we spent some time cleaning up brush out of my parent's yard. This winter wreaked havoc on the trees and my parent's have an acre and a half. Since my dad doesn't have the energy, we offerred to do the work. It was kind of fun. Today I am doing some spring cleaning. We only have a 1-bedroom apartment so space is at a premium. I have two grocery bags to donate and a large trash bag to toss. Still have more to do but for now that is pretty good.

Happy Sunday!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Shoot & Edit: Yellow (edit)

Sony DSC-HX1: 1/30 f3.2 ISO400 Edit
My guy is home! He graduated from Officer Enginner school and is home after 4 1/2 months. He suprised me by doing much of the drive in one day and getting here after I had fallen asleep on Wednesday night. So we are now trying to settle into a routine. I didn't get my SOOC version of this week's Shoot & Edit challenge on time. Before he had gotten home, I  had been struggling all week trying to figure out what I wanted my "yellow" subject to be. Every photo I kept taking wasn't what I was looking for. But when he got home I knew what to do. I am so, so proud of how hard he worked to get achieve this accomplishment. So I took a photo of my guy's Army ASU Class A Officer Hat. The gold stripe and gold badge is beautiful. Here is the SOOC version:

Sony DSC-HX1: 1/30 f3.2 ISO400 SOOC
 I started by cropping it to focus on the stripes and the badge. I also played with a lot of general editing in Picknik. In particular, adjusting the white balance made the yellow less washed out. I adjusted some of the exposure, highlights and shadows to make the contrasts sharper. But I think that just tweaking the white balance made a huge difference in bringing out the colors.

I am hoping to do the Scavenger Hunt Sunday again this week. I'm working on it...

My guy is working a security detail tonight so I am planning on catching up on my Netflix. I'm watching the last season of Weeds.

Happy Saturday!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

scavenger hunt sunday

I just found out about this weekly photography challenge.The idea is that each week there are 5 catagories that you interpret in a photograph. Fun! I just took photos around the apartment for each of the catagories this week.  Some are better than others. It was a fun way to challenge how you look at things you see everyday. Here are my images for this week's hunt:

1. Vanishing Point
My blue willow china collection. These plates make me happy. I started with a few I got after my great aunt passed away. I supplemented with a few from a local antique store. I cropped the photo a bit to have the upward perspective over to the far right of the image.

2. Square Crop
My paintbrushes. As I was searching around the apartment I took a shot of the brushes and pens on my desk. Some of these are old brushes, some are cheap, some were inherited. I edited it with a sepia tone and cropped it square. I like the perspective looking down on the brushes. I think my search for a different perspective of ordinary objects around our place was the best part of this challenge for me! I also had fun playing around with editing. I tried not to "think" too much when I took the photos and edited. Just went with it...almost like sketching when you start a painting or drawing...

3. Under
This one might be my favorite. I got this wine on a girl's weekend trip with my mom and sister last summer. We went to a little town in upstate New York where my mom lived for a few years as a kid. We stopped at a winery. This wine was delicious! But to my dissappointment, they won't ship from this winery to Massachusetts...something to do with the taxes I think. Boo!

4. "Welcome to the Jungle"
I was stumped on this one. Almost went into my old photos to find one to fit the challenge. But one shot I took from underneath of a shell whindchime I had caught my attention. I played around with fun edits to change the coloring and crop so that it almost abstracts the image. From a typical perspective the windchime has the appearance of a jellyfish. But from underneath, with a tint of blue, I think it almost looks like it could be underwater...

5. Calm
I have always loved white pitchers for some reason. I finally found one a year or so ago. I just love thier simplicity. Sometimes with flowers. Sometimes empty.

I also took a second shot for this challenge. I made Irish Freckle Break yesterday for my friends. There is something about the scent of it baking that relaxes me. I love the sweet taste with tea and coffee. It is a small treat.

I LOVED doing this creativity challenge! I will definately do it again. I am also going to try and do this week's Shoot & Edit challenge. This week's focus is "yellow." Which is ironically very similar to my shot for last week's "Spring" challenge...I shot yellow daffodils. So now I am challenged to find something else yellow to photograph....

Happy Sunday!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Shoot & Edit: Spring (edit)

Sony DSC-HX1: 1/25 f4 ISO400 Edit

Here's my edited version of the daffodils for this week's  Point & Shoot challenge: Spring. I played around with this edit more than in past edits. Did some basic edits in Picasa and Picnik. Then I used one of thier fun edits "lomo-ish." I also cropped the photo slightly...

That's it for today.

Happy Friday!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Shoot & Edit: Spring (SOOC)

Sony DSC-HX1: 1/25 f4 ISO400 SOOC
 So for this weeks Point & Shoot challenge the focus was spring (I linked up my SOOC here.) in New England the only sign of spring is that it is raining instead of snowing. We have had a rough winter. So the only sign of Spring is in my apartment. Some Daffodils from Trader Joes! That and my Honeysuckle candle from Yankee Candle.

Another sign of spring in my world. My guy is starting the drive back home to me from his Army Officer school in 8 days. 8 days! He left in the middle of October! Yeah! Fortunately we were able to see each other twice during these months. That made it more bearable. And his having given in and buying a cell phone certainly helped too. But it has still been hard and neither of us can wait to return to a state of normalcy....whatever that is!

I have fallen out of the habit of doing my weekly Monday Gratitudes. So here they are....

Today I am grateful for:
  1. medication for my dad
  2. the Army
  3. my apartment
  4. Trader Joes
  5. a chance to host my girlfriends for Girl's Night next weekend
  6. my Irish heritage from my mom
  7. a day off
  8. Netflix on my Wii
  9. life events and milestones to look forward to
  10. income
  11. coffee on lazy morning
  12. clean laundry
  13. trip to Ikea with my sister
  14. joy in decorating our place
  15. knitting
  16. my friends
  17. sunday dinner with my family yesterday
Well I am off to be lazy on this day. I have Spring Break from the college this week so a few extra days off. I will be at my other job tomorrow and wednesday but have another long weekend coming up. Much needed relaxation and artwork I hope.

Happy Monday!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

catching up

new throw pillows from ikea. playing around with pattern.
 Life has been so busy. I have fallen behind in writing here, reading my favorite blogs, participating in the Point & Shoot Challenge, artwork,...pretty much everything I really enjoy. I need to get back. This week I have a few extra days off for Spring Break and so far so good.

Yesterday I went to Ikea with my sister. What fun! I was good and didn't spend to much. Got some boxes to organize my linen closet, new throw pillows for the bed, rug in the kitchen and a very exciting...salad spinner for $3! I saw a few things I want to get on my next visit. Especially an outdoor umbrella that clips on to a side table. Perfect for my very hot, sunny balcony that doesn't have enough space for a traditional umbrella.

Here are the goodies I picked up (minus the kind-of-boring-storage boxes in my closet):

closeup of the throws. i love patterns but almost never buy them or wear them. went outside my comfort zone! love them!

6 wine glasses for about $5! Perfect to try out glass painting.

throw rug for my kitchen. funny story: saw a young couple there and the guy pointed out and suggested this rug out to his wife and she said "no...not that one." Well...I liked it!

Two hand towels to match the flower I bought at Pier One months ago for my bathroom. I love that dark purple that seemed to be popular this fall/winter.

I am hoping to participate in the "Spring" Point & Shoot challenge this week. I also have a few projects I want to work on. Get some photos developed, try out the glass painting kit I got for Christmas, paint a "welcome" sign for my parent's friends, etc. I am also attending a local "Yarn Crawl" where you can check out the areas yarn shops, find sales and fun stuff. That is later this week.

And....only 9 more days until my guy graduates from his Basic Officer Course and starts the journey back to me! That is such good news and much needed....


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