Friday, January 15, 2010

Pinewood Derby

It's Pinewood Derby season again and I've been noticing a lot more people are searching for ideas.  Last year, my son chose to do a Harry Potter pinewood derby car.  It was a huge hit with all the  adults.  Most of the kids preferred something a little "flashier". 

It's funny how competitive the dads get with the derby.  My husband is a classic example.  He wants to win the fastest car award.  Forget the kid, He wants it.  He sits down every year and tests the axles to make sure that they are straight, even and balanced.  Then he works on the wheels.  They must be slick and smooth as a whistle so they glide faster than everyone else's wheels.  He nabbed some mega wattage sand paper and got to work.  We're talking 3000 grit here that can only purchased commercially.

Me, I tend to look at the creative side of this, of course.  I also want the kid doing as much as possible.  I think he should go for the coolest car every year, regardless of how quick it might be. 

The Eldest decided this year to do a very different entry indeed.  He wanted a skateboard.  Very cool. 

The guys got the form done and the creative department took over.  I had the Eldest spray paint the deck  (look Mom, skateboarding terminology!) with a bright orange paint (Hemi orange.)  He did a good job with it too.

We knew we wanted skulls on it.  I mean, have you ever seen a skateboard that didn't have at least one?  I wasn't going to be able to draw one.  Drawing is not one of my skill sets.  So, I went shopping for skulls. 

All the official pinewood derby sections of the craft stores were searched.  Nothing.  So, I started looking outside of the box.  Know what I found that was the right subject and scale?  Tattoos.  I love looking at things outside the box, don't you?   How many people would look at tattoos and say, "Hey, that would be perfect for a Pinewood Derby Car!:"  Not many I think.

Here's what we have come up with so far:

We're not done yet.  I'm going to mix up some resin and pour over it so that the designs really pop out.  I'm turning into a resin junky.    I'm going to let The Eldest do the resin pouring as well.  He is so excited about this project.  Once it's set, we'll have to drill out the hole again for the wheels to go in.  I'll have pics of the finished project sometime next week.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Photography problems

Today was exceedingly frustrating.  I've made some more jewelry that I'm planning on putting in my etsy shop.  It's not up there yet, so don't all go rushing at once to look at it.  :P

The frustration comes with the photography.  I have my lightbox, my camera, numerous work lights all set up, but my pics are turning out crappy.  I can't figure out what my problem is.  I took 114 pics today and not one of them, even with the help of photoshop, can be used.  I think I need a jewelry photography class.

This one turned out okay though:

This is one miserable porch kitty.  Can't ya tell?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Proof That It's Cold

I'm freezing.  It's been freaking cold here, especially for us here in Georgia.  I don't like cold.  I'm standing by my statement that I'm allergic to the cold weather. I can't feel my fingers, toes, nose or behind.  I want heat.  I want my summer back.  This is why I never go on vacation to cold climates.  My sister in law goes snow skiing and calls it fun.  Phooey.  I'll go snow skiing when and if it's of absolute necessity and I can survive no other way.

Wanna know who else has been cold?

I set a blanket on the floor beside a space heater for our 17.5 year old dog.  She was so pitiful and I wanted to baby her.  Look at the crowd that showed up:

This is absolutely amazing.  Let me tell you why:

Yellow cat -doesn't like the other three animals
Brown cat -doesn't like the other three animals
Black dog - doesn't like the cats, barely tolerates little brown dog
Brown dog - Loves everybody but is at the bottom of the totem pole

And lastly:  that blanket was only 2 foot x 3 foot in size.

How about a close up of the part of the picture that had our jaws gaping wide:

If you only knew how many fights I've had to break up over the years with these two.  They hate each other.  They've even divided the house up into territories in order to avoid each other and woe be the one who crosses into the wrong territory!

Truly, hell hath frozen over!

Monday, January 11, 2010

French Press Slippers and One Pink Sock

I've got some actual knitting for you today!  That hasn't been happening much lately has it?

I jumped on the bandwagon and made some French Press Slippers for my mom:

Didn't they turn out cute?  This is the slipper pattern that I've been looking for.  They're perfect.  By the way, if you do the math, this woman has made a mint by selling this pattern.  It didn't hurt her either to have the Yarn Harlot mention her on her blog.  Just think, so far, there have been approx. 1796 people that have made this pattern.  Now at $7.00 a pop, that's just a staggering amount of money, and there are 3,662 people who are queuing up to make it!  

Will someone please kick my brain in gear so that I can come up with a brilliant pattern to sell for this kind of money?  Please?

Over the holidays my Dad requested another pair of wool socks.  When I gave him the last pair, he put them away for the longest time, afraid to use them.  This is a normal pattern for him by the way.  My mom bought him a pair of sandals and it took him two years before he wore them.  But now he's seen the light and wants another pair. 

I haven't been into making socks lately.  They take so blooming long and I never see real progress fast enough to make me happy.  So, I thought, worsted socks?  He'd like a pair for hunting, I know.  Then I decided to try out a tube sock.  Hey, no heel to turn, right?  Not that I hate doing short rows, I'm just feeling lazy.

So I did a test run on some spiral tube socks, for me to wear.  I'm tired of cold feet.  Here's what's happening so far:

1.   I have one sock finished:

2.  I don't like how the ribbing at the top goes on for four inches before the pattern starts spiraling.  If I make it again, I will only do maybe two inches and then start the spirals.

3.  I hate the toe.  These are top down socks and I now remember why I hate those.  I need to find a better way to end the sock by the time I get down to the second toe.

4.  It bunches up a little around the ankles.  Not bad enough to keep me from ever making these again though.

5.  On a good note, they are super warm and I like the color.  It also only took three days to make one sock and that was done in tiny spurts over the three days.
6.  My other foot would like me to hurry and finish up the second sock, it's freezing.

So, I will keep looking for a sock pattern that I like for my Dad that is still in worsted weight yarn.  Shouldn't be too hard.