Sunday, July 30, 2006

PIctures of the Frog

This morning I felted the frog bag for my mom. This pattern came from Nicky Epstein's book "Fabulous Felted Bags". It did a little better on the first cycle than I thought it would, and it also managed to wriggle its way out of the laundry bag I had stuffed it in which caused it to lose one eye in the felting process. No worries! I had extra yarn and easily sewed it back on.


Friday, July 28, 2006

Item is done!!!

Before leaving for work yesterday, I searched all over the house for something I would never find there. I had a ball of light green Cascade 220 left over from part of *item* and I was thinking of using scraps of it for the last two little pieces I had left. I eventually gave up looking for it at home, and when I arrived at the shop Warren told me I had left it there last week. Oops! I guess I was just so excited seaming last week that the idea of where my yarn was was out of my mind. Papaya also found lots of scraps for me to attempt to use for the negligable yards that I needed. I decided to use her purpley/pink color.

I didn't realize this until I got home and was stuffing the little bits, but the book has a typo! It told me to start with color A and switch to color D to make the bits, but when I was stuffing and holding them up to the rest of the project, something didn't look quite right. Boo. So I had to undo one to get the purpley/pink yarn out and used the very last little bit of dark green I had. And boy am I glad I had more than what the pattern required. With the "opps" that used a total of 4 rows of yarn (maybe a whole yard and a half) I had exactly enough to make both the bits. I was stressing at the end hoping that it would stretch to my needs, but then I was proud when I only had about 6 inches left, thinking "Ha! Take that, yarn."

This weekend I am going to felt it. I am so excited. This thing was very nice to knit and there was only one boring part, so I could definitely have knit forever, but I am also so excited to see it completed. Don't worry, pictures will be up within the next week or so. :o)

ANd now what shall my next project be??

Friday, July 21, 2006

Schedules of fun

On Monday I was not feeling spectacular enough to endure a class of hard core fendues with Tif, so I opted to stay home and relax instead. This meant that Wednesday was going to be very hard. Then I got the bright idea to only take Dance Movements Wednseday night and then slip out of work in the middle of the day to go to Belly Dance 2 on Thursday. Great plan. Wednesday was quite the workout. As much as it is painful at the time, I really like when Tif teaches because at the end it is very refreshing. Thursday I got into work a little early so that I could afford to take a few hours out of the middle of the day and still be able to get off in time for knitting that night. (yes, I know I have my priorities in line) There were only four of us in the midday class as opposed to the usual 10 or so. It made it very nice. We were also all hoovering around the same levels of ability, so that made it better. Because there were so few of us, we had more individual attention and could get better grasps on what we were doing. This week was interior hip squares, which are surprisingly complicated. I was actually able to do them even though I took it half as fast as I was supposed to. It felt so good to be dancing 12-1:15 instead of the typical 8-9:15pm. It was easier because I was more awake. I am almost considering making that my usual time because I enjoyed it so much. The only problem was a few hours later while I was running up and down stairs, running my assays I was starting to feel it in my calves. I was used to dancing and instantly passing out, not dancing then working even harder.
At knit night, I finished knitting the front of *item* and pieced it all togther. There are only two teeny tiny itty little pieces I have left to do, but that has to wait until I can get the scraps of the last color to make them. It's almost done! I'm so excited! Knit kight was relatively quiet last night, with only a select few of us in attendance. Aside from the preview of Hair, it was quiet for the most part outside as well.
Last night I was also informed that it is hard to follow my schedule and time of events. And I admit, looking at all of these posts I bounce from knitting to dancing to cross stitching to plants. So pretty much, I dance on Monday and Wednesday nights and go to knit night on Thursday nights. Thursday may also soon be home to midday dancing. And I also have that job thing during the day, more or less a 9-5. I have too many hobbies and interests. Or maybe I suffer from some serious ADD of sorts. But anyone who knew me would tell you that's obvious. ;)

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Moving On

I finished one whole color tonight at knit night! The most tedious part of *item* is done! Hooray! Now it is onto smaller parts. I am so excited! I'm moving onto a new color! Before long, it will start to look like wha it is supposed to be. :o)

That is all..

What I've Learned

Dance this week has been quite a learning experience, so I have compiled a slight list for amusement.

When we are at the bar doing a particularly difficult set, when Tif asks "What are you guys thinking about" she doesn't want to hear "I'm hungry", she wants to hear that we are thinking about our turn out, where our toes are, pointing, square hips and chest lifted. Oops.

While doing the 10 minute sets of crunches, no matter how painful it is do not stop and close your eyes on the yoga mat. This results in sleep, and it's a lot harder to pull off falling asleep in a dance class than in your typical Calculus 2 course.

Part of learning how to belly dance is getting over the fact that the first 2 years you dance, you will feel like a duck. It's natural. The only way to overcome looking like a duck is being comfortable with the fact that at some times, you might look ducky. Once you have that established, the duck feeling magically goes away. ...I haven't accepted it yet.

If all else fails, describe the format creator when she was teaching these same movements while pregnant. For instance, hip triangles and hip V's: "So, when you do the triangle you pull your lower abs in and think about Suhaila when she was pregnant.. Her stomach would go to the sides and POOM POOM. So that's the visual you want to go for, where you're just pulling in your belly button." Then see how many of us can actually do it instead of standing there laughing.

As hard as Tif's classes are, they are much easier when you take one on one day and the other on the next scheduled day instead of unknowingly doing both classes back to back. 1 hour of her class leaves you feeling light and energized the next day. 2.5 hours of her class makes you not be able to walk normally for 4 days.

Part of not having a/c in the studio means that the front door must remain open if you don't want to suffocate. Part of leaving the door open means creepy guys walking down the street will see girls in skimpy tight dance gear and will hang around to get their jollies off of it. Part of creepy guys hanging around the school means the front doors need to be closed during the hottest part of the work out. Don't depend on the outside breeze, expect to sweat, and bring water.

Finally, everything is mental. You can't think about it too much or your body won't respond. And our bodies are more like belly dancers than we realize. "What?! You want me to do what?!?! Well you haven't paid attention to me, so I am going to go over here and do my own thing and NOT what you want me to do. Ha!!"

Thursday, July 06, 2006

BD2 and Birthday!!

With dance this week, I decided that on the off chance Tif was teaching Dance Movements as well as Belly Dance 2 I was going to be sure to go to class both Monday and Wednesday night instead of doubling up and being in pain until Saturday as was the case last week. Of course, when I think of these things K was back to teaching. Oh well. Dance Movements has become a lot easier than it was when I first started. I remember being frustrated at the end of every class not understanding why I couldn't do paus de bourrets, why I nearly fell over attempting to do something as "easy" as grande plie, and why my feet never looked right when I would go into releve. I now understand the answer to all these question, and can now actually *do* them. I am also learning with each class how to further improve what I am getting better at. I think the consept of the singular calf-thigh-quad-glute-lower ab muscle recently sunk in, and the idea that you keep that one large muscle contracted during everything. I am also learning that home position for belly dancing is *very* different than for jazz/ballet. And sometimes they get confused. This was the second week in the 10 week rotation. Tendues in Jazz/ballet and downs in Belly dancing. I feel stuck in belly dacing. I know what I am supposed to be doing. I know my glutes are supposed to contract at one timing as I walk in another timing. I conciously know what my body is supposed to do and what it is supposed to look like. But did my glutes want to do anything? Nope. They wanted to be lazy and let my obliques take over. It was very frustrating that all I could do was walk. They were not listening to me. I can do them beautifully just standing or in straddle split, but add travelling to that, and they freak out because suddenly something has changed. Gahh. I need to practice at home more. I have set up a schedule and I am so behind. I practiced once when I was supposed to. Very bad. Must. Work. This weekend.

Knitting! I have finished the first part of *item* (see previous post). Hooray! Now it is 60" of stockinette stitch! ...hooray. When I went into the store tonight, Papaya instantly gave me a job. Yai! String together letter spelling out "Happy Birthday Warren", when of course as I got the last few letters together, he walks in. We strung the letters across the walls of the store, of course the "string" was yarn.. since it is a yarn shop and all. I was up on the ladder trying to hold a half taped end to the wall while reaching unsuccessfully for a piece of tape only inches from my fingers. That's when the camera came out. Quickly followed by pointy party hats which were promptly handed out. Snarky made a Coca-Cola cake (so good and SO southern!!!) which turned out excellent. If you didn't know, Southerners will put coke on or in everything and it turns out very yummi. The chocolate goo was awesome. Papaya was the first to say a speech about us helping out which was followed by Warren's speech about the knitting group being special. Hooray for knit night! It was major show and tell night. Everyone had a cami/yarn/something to show and be proud of. :o) Fun times.