Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Needle felting

One night H and I went to the Fancy Tiger here in Denver. There was a woman there creating a cat head out of different colored wool tufts and a needle. This is the fiber art know as "needle felting." We were both pretty fascinated by this. I ended up purchasing a kit to make an owl and H bought a slew of wool tufts and two needles. This was in the beginning of December 2008. This weekend we finally made time to needle felt!

H made this really awesome giraffe! It's her first needle felted item and it looks great - something like Gary Larsen would have created. I had no idea what to make. So I decided to make an alien but it ended up looking like a demented grape. It also slightly resembles the Domo Kun. Anyway, it's clear I'm headed for greatness in the fiber arts...

Also, amazing things can be done with needle felting like a needle felted:

Monday, February 23, 2009

Oscar who?

Even though we do have a television we do not have "cable" and we aren't interested in it (there are enough time sucks in my life). However, there is one night of the year that I must watch the TV - Oscar night! As has been tradition for five (?) years, our friends Lisa and Tony had us over to watch the thing.

My three comments on the winners:
  • I am not surprised Slumdog Millionaire won best picture - it was a well done film. I would have liked to have seen some other movies get some awards in the other categories though...
  • I am very glad that Sean Penn won for Milk (I really liked that movie and Mr. Penn was outstanding). However, a small part of me was holding out hope for Richard Jenkins to win - The Visitor was one of my favorite movies of 2008.
  • Robert Downey jr should have won best supporting actor. I'm not afraid to say it.
Otherwise, I was pleasantly surprised by Hugh Jackman's hosting - wasn't sure what to expect from that. I guess I haven't payed attention to his singing and dancing career but he's quite good.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

V day

I know Valentines Day was last week but I'm just getting around to maintaining the blog. Sadly, I've joined the legions of facebookers and been sucked into looking and being found by ghosts from my past. That's a whole different story. Anyway, for Vday Nadine and Ted joined us for dinner at Chez 306 (our house). In a nutshell, it was a fun evening complete with bubbly and some extremely decadent desert that Nadine brought - succintly named double chocolate eruption (or something like that). Each couple shared three cupcake-like servings of this. Here is Ted and Nadine with theirs and (below) a macro of the indulgence. It was soooo good.

Friday, February 13, 2009

"hover dogs"

I have to admit, I love wiener dogs. Occasionally, when I need uplifting or when Sandy senses I need uplifting, I'll search for wiener dog pictures or videos. Sandy found the pair of photos below. They were entitled "hover dogs."

Now for the genius of creativity!

Hilarious stuff!!

Monday, February 9, 2009


We woke up on Saturday morning with plans of bike ride, work, reading, etc - normal weekend stuff. However, we've been thinking about rearranging our living room for some time. For some reason the solution hit us on Saturday morning - Elfa! This was actually pretty timely because this weekend was the last weekend of the Elfa sale at the Container Store. Elfa is a shelving "system" that can be used to organize garages, closets, kitchen pantries or create furniture solutions for desks, entertainment centers, bookshelves, etc.

It was something of a saga getting the shelving. The way it works is this: you go to the containter store and sign up for a designer, the designer then uses the computer to input your dimensions and desires in terms of options, this computer design then spits out all the brackets, shelves, and accessories that you'll need to put the thing together - yourself.

Well, since it was the last elfa sale weekend it was crazy at the Container store. On top of that, the entire Container Store computer network was down. Our design was done mostly by hand and there were some mistakes in terms of what could be done and what accessories were included (no fault of the designer - she was fantastic!). It took about two hours from the time we entered the store until we left the store. Sandy went back two or three times on Saturday and we both went back two or three times on Sunday.

Unfortunately, I didn't take any "before" pictures when the living room was arranged as it was before Saturday.

This is where we started on Sunday morning after moving out all of the old furniture, taking all the books and other items off of the old book shelves. The Elfa 'system' is on the left.

Yota did her part by holding the chair down:

This is a shot from about midway through:
This is a shot of how it looked when all was said and done lastnight:
Exciting stuff...

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


I just saw this on the Bent Objects site and had to share. It's a little macabre but it has that knitting connection...

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Useless movie post #1

It's Oscar season and I'm trying to cram for the big night. Yes, that's right, I don't watch television all year (except for in hotels) but make a point to watch the Oscars. So far I've seen all but one of the five films up for best picture (The Reader, Curious Case of Ben Button, Frost/Nixon, Milk, Slumdog Millionaire - I've seen all but Frost/Nixon). I can't really give an opinion until I've seen them all.

Between last Sunday and yesterday I saw The Reader and Milk.


I was surprised by the overall feel of Milk, by how emotional it was. Gus Van Sant is the director and I haven't really liked the majority of his films but I think this one was well done - I wouldn't have guessed Van Sant directed it actually. The relationships and intensity really came across. Of course, Sean Penn was fabulous. I expected him to be good but when you watch a well known actor it is sometimes hard to forget that you're watching the actor. I completely forgot about Sean Penn the person. Aside from the artistic merits of the film, the fact that the Gay Rights movement is still going on is a shame to this country. Maybe it's the fact that I'm not god-fearing but I just don't see sexual orientation as a valid dividing line between "good" people and "bad" people.

The Reader

Speaking of the dividing line between good and bad people, this movie was more of a thinking movie - in the second half. The first half set up the second half but was a pretty sensual and vivid experience. The characteristic that this shares (in a different way) with Milk is the feel - in the first half of the movie, the light, the sound, etc really reached me. The second half was less robust but this is where the thinking part of the brain was supposed to kick in and it posed good questions about right and wrong, guilt and shame.

Both worth seeing.

I also watched Collateral, which may seem like an odd choice but a friend of ours said we should see it. I was surprised. Sure there were chase scenes, violent death, and guns but the music was fantastic. Also, Jamie Foxx's character added something unusual to this type of movie - a conscience. When someone was killed he actually reacted like a normal person would. But, again, the first half was way better than the second half. Interesting cameos also.