Monday, August 23, 2010

L'il Buster and the Grange Fair


The grange fair has come and gone again, and I'm glad to say that I was able to submit 3 items for judging in the needlework competition. My favorite was the L'il Buster doll, a Kathleen Early design. I won a blue ribbon with him, and was thrilled to find out at the end of the fair that the doll was also selected by the judges to compete for Best of Show! The Best of Show award went to a lovely quilt, but I'm happy nonetheless that my work was chosen as one of 5 items considered in the BOS contest.

I also submitted a baby afghan. It was a simple round ripple blanket, in a combination of melon and a creamy buttery color. It was awarded a fourth place ribbon. I'm very happy with placing fourth, because I honestly did not expect it to place for a ribbon at all.

The third item was a dishcloth which I thought had a very interesting pooling pattern. It didn't finish with a ribbon, but I did see some very lovely dishcloths in competition with it and totally agreed with the ribbon awards in that category.

I'm looking forward to next year's fair and I'm already searching my pattern stash for new items to crochet.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Yaaaaaayyyy! Spam Filters on Blogger!

I see that Blogger has initiated spam filters! It's about time! Is it a coincidence that my last post was a rant about spammers on my blog? I think not! Just kidding - I know that I haven't single-handedly saved Blogger-land from spammers. I'm sure glad to see spam filters, though!

I finished my doll and delivered him to the Grange Fair yesterday for judging in the needlework competition. I am hoping he wins a ribbon. I don't have a nice photo of him right now, but will take a picture when I get him back on Sunday and post it. I like the way it turned out. Thank you, Kathleen Early, for your design and your help with the problem I had with the instructions. It was a minor setback, but once I passed the bottleneck, the project finished up nicely.

I also entered a small round ripple baby afghan and an unusually patterned dishcloth. The afghan I don't expect to win a ribbon, as it's just a simple little blanket. I am hoping to place with the dishcloth, since it was worked with a variegated yarn, and the design turned out to be so attractive.

DH and I also got some good news about our upcoming cruise. The travel agent was able to get us a free upgrade to a concierge class cabin with a few more amenities for us. It's less than 2 months until we leave. I am looking forward to going!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Rant!

My husband, my sister-in-law and I spent a pleasant 4 days/3 nights in Nags Head in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. I returned with the thoughts of BLTs and plain tomato sandwiches in my mind, and went to pick some tomatoes from my garden. There were 4 just starting to ripen when we left. Imagine my surprise to find them gone. Not just the ripe ones, but someone stripped the entire plant of tomatoes, even the green ones! A friend suggested that it might have been an animal, but I believe it was a 2-legged tomato thief. The plant was picked clean – nothing broken and no half-eaten fruit in the area.

As if that’s not bad enough – I have another rant! What’s with all the spam comments on my blog lately? They come through in foreign Asian characters, a new comment every day. Thankfully, I had the foresight to set up my comments to be pre-approved before publishing, so I don’t have to go in to delete comments all the time, and my readers aren't subjected to this trash. I welcome comments on my blog, but not like this. Junk mail, spam in our e-mail boxes, and now this! Don’t these people have lives? I wish there was a way to direct this garbage right back into their mailboxes!

To turn this to a crochet-related discussion – the doll I’m working on is coming along nicely. I started a second doll, because I made a mistake attaching the arm on the first doll. He’s lopsided. I’ve learned from the first attempt that there is a better way to attach the legs and hopefully, when it’s time to attach the arms, that will work out better too. I’m running short of time, so I’ve got to get down to business and finish this doll. The Grange Fair is in 9 days - can I finish in time?

Work is going so much better for me. I can't believe that I worried so much about making the change (it helps that my overall outlook on life has greatly improved as well) but I'm so much happier in the new environment. My bosses seem to really appreciate my efforts and I enjoy helping them out. My last boss - let's face it. He was a jerk. Not a bad guy - just a jerk. I never pictured him as an HR manager. I thought his element was a cruise ship, and envisioned him trying to get overweight men to sign up poolside to take part in the bellyflop contest! Yes, cruise director would have been his ideal career choice. He was too casual and nonchalant about everything, even referring to his teammates as "Dude". I wish him luck in his new position (he's left the company).