Saturday, July 18, 2015

Another Entry (Kind Of) Off The Bucket List

My father-in-law and one of our nephews have been visiting. One of the things we did today was charter boat fishing out on the Chesapeake Bay, which kind of strikes off one more thing off my bucket list.

We didn't take cameras with us, but we did catch some fish. I managed to catch a croaker and something called an oyster toadfish. The first mate on the boat seemed a little surprised by that, because they aren't all that common. 

Unfortunately, my nephew (17 years old) didn't catch anything though.

There was a woman onboard who caught the thing I most desperately want to catch: a shark! She said she was using a chunk of croaker as bait. I don't know what kind it was, but it was about four feet long, and looked like a weird little cross between a Great White and a goblin shark. I don't know the requirements on keeping sharks, but it did go back into the water.

  • I'd like to take a tour of a Navy sub, but my husband and I don't know anyone that works on board a sub.
  • I'd like to take a tour of a Navy ship that most people will never get to go on. I got to go walk around under a ship while it was in dry dock, and then I walked up the scaffolding around the mast, almost to the very top!
  • I'd love to go for a ride in a fighter jet of some kind.
  • I want to go jet skiing in the Atlantic Ocean.
  • I want to go scuba diving or snorkeling in the Caribbean.
  • I want to go to the top of the Washington Monument. 
  • I want to go to NYC, and see the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, the Twin Towers, and go to a show of some sort. We went there in 2000 and saw The Late Show with David Letterman.
  • I want to go to the Saint Louis Arch. We did this in 1999.
  • I want to go to Niagara Falls. We did this in 2000.
  • I want to go to Universal Studios Florida. We did this in 2001 and I'd love to do it again!
  • I want to go to the Poconos and stay in one of their themed suites. We did this in 2006 and stayed at Caesar's in the champagne glass suite.
  • I want to stay in a themed suit at the HoJo in Florence, KY. I'm crossing this one off without doing it. I took a look at their rooms again (apparently, they were bought by another hotel chain). The rooms on the new website look pretty cheesy, even for a themed hotel. Plus, the room I would have liked is a smoking room only, so you know it's going to stink.
  • I want to visit Santa Claus, IN, "American's Christmas Hometown."
  • I want to go to Metropolis, IL.
  • I want to get a memorial tattoo in honor of my mom and my mother-in-law.
  • I want to take a road trip up to DC to see the Madame Tussaud Wax Museum and go to Horace and Dickie's Seafood Restaurant This one was both completed (wax museum) and not completed (Horace and Dickie's) in April 2015.
  • I want to write a bad sci-fi horror script and present it to The Asylum to see if they'd be willing to make it into an actual movie for the SyFy Channel. I finished this on April 12, 2015.
  • I want to finally order the "Hell's Admin Assistant" patch for my motorcycle jacket that I've been thinking about for years.--I figure it's a funny alternative to a Hell's Angel patch, which I'm clearly not a member of Hell's Angels. I ordered one from Star City Stitchery
  • I'd like to cuddle a baby gorilla. I really don't know where this one comes from, but aren't baby gorillas the cutest babies EVER??!
  • I want to take a painting class, a la Bob Ross. I did this in a restaurant in Virginia Beach with a bunch of motorcycle riders from an American Legion post, in 2014.
  • I want to go hang gliding in Kill Devil Hills, NC. I did this over Memorial Day weekend with my husband.
  • I want to see the archaeological dig at the Jamestown Settlement.  I did this in April 2015.
  • I want to go charter boat fishing in the Atlantic Ocean: I tried doing this in 2012, but the water was really rough that day. I didn't catch anything but I sure made a lot of chum! In July 2015, we went charter boat fishing in the Chesapeake Bay.
  • I want to go to the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art.
  • I want to see KISS in concert, in the make-up. 
  • I will get a job at some kind of animal shelter, and I'm going to be damn good at whatever I end up doing there. 
  • I will get at least one old, beat up piece of wood furniture, save it from going to the landfill, and refinish it. I've actually done two pieces now.
  • I'd like to go on an LCAC ride with my husband before he transfers to his new command.I had to cross this one off finally, because Shane left this command already. This bummed me out. I never got a ride on an LCAC out on the bay. Some of his family members did, and even though I offered to take any number of half days off from work, I never got to ride. 
  • I will go to see the Booth Trail in 2013. 
  • I will go to Natural Bridge, VA (We did this in 2013) and the Shenandoah Valley and stay in a cabin in the woods.  We did this for the end of the year in 2014.
  • I will go to Hiddenite Gems, an emerald mine open to the public, in NC. 
  • I will go to the Richmond Zoo and the Virginia Zoo (they have done a lot of remodeling and I haven't been there for a several years). 
  • I can't drive a clutch and have no desire to learn, but I'd like to go for a ride in a 1957 Chevy BelAire and a mid-80's Lamborghini Countach.
  • I'd like to sit in any of the Batmobiles (did the original series Batmobile at ROFCON 2015), ECTO-1 from Ghostbusters, KITT from Knight Rider, and the General Lee from The Dukes of Hazzard.
  • I will go to the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. 
  • I want to go to Rhode Island, Boston and Seattle, just for the sake of going.
  • I want to go to Tokyo some day.--I've been to Hanoi and Hue, Vietnam, but it wasn't close enough.
  • I want to see the pyramids and sphinx in Egypt. 
  • I'd love to see the Mona Lisa (she's in the Louvre in Paris) and The Scream (there are a couple, two of them are in Munich). 
  • I want to go to London, and maybe look for the TARDIS and the Doctor. 
  • I want to go to San Diego to see my best friend, go to Comic Con, wear a costume, take lots of photos, find an awesome looking Spider-Man so I can give him a hug for just being Spidey, and then walk a beach on the Pacific Ocean, looking for shells. 
  • I'd like to go to a taping of "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" if we ever go to California.  I had to cross this one off: On April 28, 2014, Ferguson announced that he will leave the show on December 19, 2014.
  • I want to have at least one great, wildly creative crochet pattern published in a real book somewhere. 
  • I'd like to have our yard be featured for our Halloween decorations with a local tv station, so people might understand you don't have to spend big bucks on decorations and still put together a great display (I say this because we don't go as crazy for Christmas decorations). 
  • I'd like to win a challenge on Craftster. 
  • I'd like to compete on Craft Wars on TLC. I had to cross this one off too, because I'm pretty sure it's no longer on the air. I can't find any updated information on it. 
  • I will finish the Jedi costume finally and I will join the Rebel Legion I was accepted in December 2014!
  • I want to ride a mechanical bull. --I did this in April 2015.
  • I will finish the doll house I started several years ago. 
  • I want to go to Ohio and see Ralphie Harper's house from The Christmas Story. 
  • I want to see Weird Al Yankovic in concert, and maybe even the Bangles if I ever get to California. 
  • I want to see the Barenaked Ladies again, the next time they come to Hampton Roads.
  • I want to take my friends to the Virginia Safari drive through park in Stanton, VA. Did this in July 2014.
  • Monday, July 13, 2015

    Striped Hooded Cowl Pattern

    At the end of June, I had an entry where I was bitching about some of Nicole the Knitter's friends.

    Nicole knew not to ask me about using any of my stash for a second animal hood for one of her friends (the one who likes red foxes but cried about not liking the orange of the first hood), The friend in question had a bad day, where her mother totaled her car on the interstate. That being said, it doesn't excuse eight months of not answering two simple questions for a hood you claim you wanted. I'm tied of people not taking responsibility for themselves.

    Anyway, I'm getting off on a tangent here, Nicole went yarn shopping and picked up two skeins of Lion Brand Heartland yarn in Yosemite (#135). This is a medium weight yarn. It was almost enough for this hood (each skein is 251 yards). She didn't pick up any edging or ear colors, so I had to use some of my stash for that.

    The hood also had to be close to this pattern here. Finally, we're getting somewhere now. But, with all the patterns on the internet, I don't buy patterns and usually, neither does Nicole.

    Instead, I found this pattern and liked it quite a bit. Because I was going for an over-sized hood, I increased the pattern size, and let me tell you, it was wildly easy to do! This is an extremely versatile pattern and easy to re-adjust for children or adults. In fact, since I've got another one to make, I plan on using this pattern again, but in different colors and with different shaped ears.

    One change I did make was to overlap the cowl and actually sew the front closed. After putting in a couple of stitches, I secured it again with two wooden buttons from my mom's stash. It doesn't take away from it being a hood with a cowl at all, and I think it gives it just a bit of a neater/cleaner appearance, rather than me making button holes for it. I figure when made of yarn, those holes will just stretch out anyway, if this hood actually gets worn.

    The ears are each two triangles. the back of the ear is the Yosemite yarn. The front of the ear is a little smaller triangle of stash yarn. I lined them up on the bottom edge and used the Yosemite to whip stitch them together. Then I attached them to the top of the hood (again, with a tiny, understated widow's peak) and actually made sure to sew them on twice. It sounds a little crazy but this is how I attach ears to hats: lay the ear down on the hat where you want it, face up.  Whip stitch them along the bottom edge on the front. Then flip the ear forward so the back of the ear is facing up, Then you whip stitch them along the bottom edge on the back. This gives the ear a more secure attachment to the hat. Once the ears were on (at a slight angle), I went back and added the black tufty fur yarn along the edges.

    If this hood doesn't work for her, then she's not getting a third.

    Sunday, July 12, 2015

    Orion Made a Friend

    My husband purposely bought this feeder and hook, and deliberately put it in front of our living room Orion would have something else to watch (because I guess our trees with bird feeders aren't close enough for her to see). 

    I'm not sure but I think my husband loves this cat. :)

    Anyway, this squirrel kept coming back here this morning and Orion was just AMAZED! The squirrel wasn't even bothered by us sitting there, watching him with her. We wondered how he was getting up there, thinking he was jumping from the unseen rain barrel. But no, my father-in-law saw him shimmy right up the hook.