Sunday, December 20, 2009

December (so far)

Wow, I can't believe how long it's been since I've posted anything. I've just been so busy at work and working on a bunch of projects (house and knitting) that I just haven't had time.

Here in Philly we just got dumped on. It was so nice to see snow. Not only that, I woke up this morning and someone had shoveled my steps and sidewalk! Unfortunately, I still had to go out in it since I also had to dig out my car. Kind of missing my covered parking spot at the moment.

But as I was shoveling out my car, I noticed that someone actually came down our street and PLOWED! I was shocked. This is a one block street and not even close to being on the city's radar for any sort of priority. Unfortunately, the woman across the street proceeded to throw the snow she shoveled from the sidewalk into the street. Seriously, how hard is it to pile up in front of your house? I did it.

Marissa was the only one brave enough yesterday to come over for brunch. We had some yummy creme brulee french toast and then Marissa helped w/ some picture hanging ideas. After she left, I felt brave enough to actually hang a few things, including my stained glass mirror in the entryway. Thought it would add a little more light to the place, but not much more. Still, now everyone can admire it instead of it hiding in my bedroom.

I've been really busy this month working on projects for myself, as well as some last minute gifts I decided to knit up for the holidays. Yeah, note to self: don't wait until after Thanksgiving to start on holiday gifts!

Two gifts I've been working on are knitted toys from Susan B. Anderson's Itty Bitty Toys. This book is just so cute, that I had to buy and start projects from it. Never thought I'd knit toys, but like I said, I just had to. It's like Field of Dreams: if you build it they will come, go the distance, etc. So far, I finished the Giraffe and am working on the baby doll. I'm not posting pictures b/c even though my nieces don't read my blog, my sister does and I want her to be surprised too. Don't worry, she's seen the book and picked out the ones the girls would like, so that part isn't a surprise.

I've also been chugging away on that crazy log cabin blanket made out of Noro Kureyon. Basically, each square is a skein of Kureyon and comes out to about 9 1/2 x 10 1/2 inches. So far I've made a whopping 13 squares!!!!! This is a great, mindless commuting project, which is why I've gotten so far. I think I have enough Noro now (yeah, I went a little crazy at WEBS, Rosies, and another place), to make upwards of 25 squares (5x5), but might add another 5 to make it 5x6. We'll see. For now, here's a shot of some of the squares laid out on the bed.

But, b/c I've been working on that, my Olivia cardigan has been put on hiatus. I'll bring it with me to Florida and will hopefully finish it there. I also plan to bring a pair of socks w/ me to work on, on the beach, since they seem to be the socks I prefer to wear this winter.

Oh yeah, I also quickly whipped up a cute little hat from Itty Bitty Hats (another Susan B. Anderson pattern). Pattern is called candy cane, but since this was going to Myles Cody and he celebrates Hanukkah, I called it Hanukkah Gelt. His mom sent me a picture of him in it a few days later. He's just too cute!

Finally, something I've been working on for almost 2 years. I picked this back up this fall, but then got addicted to the Noro blanket instead. I will, someday, finish this. Only problem is I'm not crazy about the colors anymore. Again, the Noro blanket is what I really want. Still, it really is a pretty afghan made out of Manos del Urugauy Clasica.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

POLL: I need your help . . .

I bought 2 different shower curtains over the weekend and want your opinion. Please let me know what you think. The pictures are terrible, of course, but I hope that you get the idea.

The first one - Leaves - is a cottonish material and bright white w/ some green leaves and tan leaves. The tan matches the wall color nicely, but it is quite pale against the white.

Then 2nd one - flowers - is a more satinish material w/ blue, brown and tan ribbon flowers and then the a dark brown border at the bottom. The main color is more of an off-white color. The colors stand out a bit more on this one.

The trim in the room is bright white and the towels I bought over the weekend are also a bright white color. I didn't want anything too dark since it is such a small place. That's a given since it is so hard to just get a picture of these shower curtains for you. Ok, thanks so much for you opinion on this!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Getting settled

Well, it's now been a few weeks and I'm slowly getting settled in. My folks came down for the day at the beginning of the month and really helped me clear out the first floor and put things in their rightful place. Once my mom (a/k/a drill Sergeant for the day) took over, there was no stopping her. Here is how beautiful the kitchen looked when we were done.

Since then, I've had a chance to settle in more. Here's a look at how the front of the house is looking. The rug was left behind by the sellers and actually doesn't look so bad except that it's too small. I think throw rugs are next on my list of house purchases.

As you can see, the TV has been mounted on the wall. There were some issues w/ the job. The guy who installed it actually put it up significantly higher than I wanted it (20" above the mantle). My friend managed to move the TV down on the mount so that now it is only 12" above the mantle. I complained, and the guys are coming back after the holiday to make it right. It really should be only 2-3" above the mantle b/c the room is so narrow.

Onto the 2nd floor. I haven't done anything w/ the guest room yet. For now, it is basically my bedroom from my apartment until I decide what I want to do with it. The room gets some really great light during the day, so I may want to make it a sitting area or combine some of my office. My office is kind of dark b/c the window is set back a bit.

I haven't done much w/ the bathroom or office yet, so here is my bedroom. It essentially looks the same as what I had shown before. In the coming weeks, I plan to start hanging pictures.

Lastly, the basement is coming along nicely. My friend vented the dryer for me and also put together storage shelves from IKEA. Next, I want to work on my craft area, but I can wait until after the new year for that one. I'll post basement pictures in a few weeks.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

It's mine, all mine!

As promised, a picture of Alex sleeping horizontally in my bed.

She started out on the pillow on the right. My sister moved her back and when I came up to bed a couple hours later, she was on my pillow, almost sleeping across the bed, again.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Flower Cardigan and Hat

Do you remember how I made my niece the Flower Cardigan and Hat from Susan Anderson's Itty Bitty Nursery for her 1st birthday? Well, she finally (mostly) fits in it, 8 months later!

She wore it to the museum and we got lots of compliments on it. She looked so cute in it that I just had to share!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My first house guests!

Last weekend, I had my first set of house guests for the weekend. My sister came up w/ the girls to visit college and grad school friends and brought the girls with her. My sister's first comment was that I finally was in an adult house. The best was that I had places for everyone to stay! She was in the guest room, Leah was in the office, and Alex was with me in my room. It worked out really well, except that somehow, little Alex manages to take up the entire bed. Amazing. I was hugging the edge just to get some room. Katie has a great picture of Alex lying horizontal on the bed. And I thought I moved around in my sleep a lot!

Leah was a treat and loved being thrown in the air. Here we are playing around one of the mornings.

I had a few toys, perfectly placed in drawer and Leah was great at not just taking things out, but also putting them away. I was impressed. Even I still have problems putting things away!

On Saturday, we started out at the Please Touch Museum where Alex proceeded to show her mom all the cool places in Alice's Wonderland, including tea w/ the Mad Hatter and White Rabbit.

Queen of Clubs . . .

Leah had a great time shopping in the market.

Afterwards, we left Katie and Leah, and Alex and I went to the Academy of Natural Sciences and then the Franklin Institute. At one point, Alex exclaimed, "Scientists are my most favorite people, ever!" Oh my.

I was sad to see them go on Sunday morning. It was a great visit and I look forward to the next time they come up, which will be more often since they finally have a place to stay!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Hip to be square

I am terrible at checking out my friends' projects and copying them. Jen posted about her new Noro obsession that Jenna got her hooked on. I saw it and immediately thought it would be the perfect traveling/commuting project. Basically, it's the Log Cabin squares, knit with different skeins of Noro Kureyon. It's great b/c you never know what color combinations you are going to get. I started this last Friday and now have 4 squares finished.

I will say, it does help that I had a 2 hour flight on Sunday and I've been in 2 days straight of CLE on bankruptcy. It's all I can do to stay awake and follow what's going on. Especially when they are talking about chapters (i.e., chapter 13) I don't work on.
Then, I've been participating in an afghan square swap with the Friends of P folks on Ravelry. These are the last 2 squares I made for my pals.

Pals are making me squares and I'm supposed to make some for myself, so we'll see what happens and whether I actually finish (or start) that project.

House Update

In the past few weeks, I've begun to settle into my house. Marissa made me this beautiful drawing of my rowhouse to use as my new address cards. I'll eventually have it framed and hang it in my house.

I moved my stuff in and am now wondering how it's all going to fit! This is just the tip of the iceberg before the boxes were unloaded from the truck. Boy is my couch big!

I then went to IKEA and got some stuff to better utilize my kitchen cabinets, including this carousel for the corner cabinet and this pull-out shelf for the deep corner cabinet.

My friend Jason moved the wardrobes around that were left behind and attached them to the walls in my bedroom and in the office, blocking the door b/w the two rooms. This is helping to maximize space.

I then went back to IKEA and got shelves and drawers to put into the wardrobes so I could finally begin to unpack. I still have to put stuff in the other closet, but for now, here's how 1 wardrobe looks in my bedroom. (it now is filled w/ clothes)

It turns out that the wardrobe in the office is perfect for storing my craft (aka, knitting) supplies. It's not nearly as deep as the bedroom wardrobes, so not as functional for clothes. But, for knitting, it's perfect. I need to go back and get some more of the sectional shelves and maybe another drawer before it's finished. I haven't decided if I'm going to keep the books in there or if I'm going to move the bookshelf in there.

I think I've managed to unpack about 20 of the 75+ boxes I packed. I have a long way to go . . .

Thursday, October 15, 2009

New additions

Tomorrow is D-day. The movers are coming and clearing out my apartment and I'm finally moving into my new house! I've been taking a few things over this past week (mainly plants and perishisbles), but 2 main things arrived today to really make it feel like it's my place.

First, my bedroom furniture arrived this morning. The delivery men set it up and I'm really excited about it. Wish I could sleep in my new bed tonight, but I'm definitely looking forward to tomorrow night -- my first night in the house.

The second new addition, are the window treatments. Until now, every time I've been at the house, folks have been able to see in and see what I'm doing. Now, I've got privacy! I had cellular blinds installed in the living room. Instead of getting the basic set up, I opted to add the feature allowing you to drop the blinds down from the top. This will provide light, while also providing privacy when I want it.

Upstairs, I had basic mini-blinds installed. I didn't want to go too crazy. If I really want something different than the white mini-blinds, I can change it in the future. For now, they are just fine.

The best is that all of my windows are deep enough to allow for the blinds to be set inside the window frames as opposed to the outside like my parents had to do at their house.
I spent the rest of the day putting together storage shelves in the basement, but have to go back to IKEA b/c I forgot a couple parts that I need for the shelves. Duh.
I'm offline for the next few days until my cable/internet are installed. I'll post photos once I'm back online.

Monday, October 12, 2009

October 13th

October 13th is a big day in my family. Not only is it my birthday, but my Dad and Uncle Eddie were born that day. To top that off, my sister married my brother-in-law that day -- my 30th birthday.

My Dad and I try to celebrate together every year. This year, my sister, BIL, and nieces drove up this year to celebrate with us since it is my Dad's 65th birthday. We didn't go all out, but instead had a very nice dinner.

The birthday boy and girl

I don't know if you can see the vest my Dad is wearing, but that's the vest I made him for his birthday. Not bad.

Family picture

The sibs
It was a quick trip to North Jersey b/c I had to run back and continue to pack (that's what I'm supposed to be doing right now). I stopped off at Bed, Bath & Beyond to get new dishes (1 less thing to pack), new sheets, and other odds and ends. I then stopped at Home Depot to pick up my first set of flowers (mums) for the house. I hope they don't freeze tonight. Later, I went back to IKEA and picked up storage shelves and other stuff for the kitchen. There's still tons more to get and do, but for now, I think this will hold me off for a couple weeks!
I probably should go to bed now. I have to be up early for the handyman who is coming to hook my refrigerator up to the water line. I will have my very own ice maker for the first time. How nice.

Friday, October 9, 2009


I swear, I feel like I'm not getting anywhere w/ my packing. Drawers and cabinets have been emptied, but my place is still not packed! I am down to my last 4 boxes from Sherry and 3 boxes from Foodies. I used up all those awesome boxes Melissa and I found on the street in front of Ye Olde Cleaners. If only I could find them again! I refuse to pay money for boxes this time around. I already went thru a jumbo-sized roll of bubble wrap and need more.

As much as I'm looking forward to seeing the family tomorrow and celebrating my birthday and my dad's birthday tomorrow, I need time!!!!!!! Thank god Monday is a holiday.

Totals so far:

45+ boxes
5 plastic drawers
5 plastic bins of various sizes
7 suitcases of varying sizes (all expanded to their maximum)

It seems like there's no end in sight!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Just a spoonful of color

A lot has happened since I last posted, including the closing on my new house last week! I'm very excited and now trying to pace myself w/ all of the things I want to do and need to get.

First thing I tackled was to find a painter and paint the rooms upstairs. The rooms were either a light yellow or a deeper goldenrod color. Yes, they were bright, but I am not a yellow person. So, that meant that I needed to paint the rooms. My painter has finished the rooms and is now tackling the trim in the entire house. The rooms look so good, that I was almost tempted to also paint the guest room, but decided that's the one room I won't be in so it's ok to keep it the light yellow.

Next, I spent many hours in Ikea and Lowes scoping things out and picking up stuff for the house. I also got the new fridge and need to hire someone to hook up the water line to the fridge so I can use the ice maker and water dispenser. The wonderful handyman who is painting my walls can mount my tv to the wall, but doesn't feel comfortable doing the water line, so I'm waiting to hear back from someone on that job.

Tonight I ran home and took some quick pictures of the paint job so far. They aren't the most accurate pictures since they are at night, but they'll have to do for now. I'll post more pictures over the weekend.

Here's my bathroom. I used Benjamin Moore's Pale Almond. It came out really well.

My bedroom has a little more color to it b/c I wanted it to coordinate w/ my duvet cover. I'm still a little nervous about how it will look w/ my new bedroom furniture and the cream leather headboard, but I think it should be ok. Worse comes to worse: I paint it again. Anyway, I like how it turned out so far. It's Benjamin Moore's Pebble Beach.

Finally, I also painted the office since I'll be in there a lot and it was more of a goldenrod than a pale yellow. I think I could have survived w/ pale yellow, but the goldenrod just did not do it for me. Then again, I don't seem to mind it in the kitchen . . . Anyway, I had no clue what color to use and settled on a dusty mauvish purple color called Frosted Toffee. It's hard to tell how it looks w/ the lighting at night. One picture looks more neutral and the other looks more pinkish, so who knows. Still, it's way better than goldenrod. I think this color would look good w/ dark wood-stained furniture. I'll think about it when I update my office furniture in the future.

Now, I just need to set up cable, get the window treatments installed, set up shelving for storage in the basement, and pack. Moving day is a week from Friday!!!!!