Wednesday, February 22, 2012

What I think and what I get....

Adam is a film snob, who donates generously to some SF film society thing, who provides him-- and therefor me sometimes-- the opportunity to screen films in advance and/or with director and/or cast in attendance. I was therefor most fortunate to be able to hear Guillermo del Toro talk after seeing Pan's Labyrinth. This was years ago and I'm certain I blogged about it (dear Livejournal?) but cannot find the post-- nor a quote from him, which is why I bring it up. He said something that struck me deeply and I'm going to slaughter the quote so I ask your forgiveness in advance.

I have monsters in my heart the way some people say they have Jesus in their heart

As silly as it sounds, that quote affected me more strongly then any other quote I've heard in ages. It rang so true in my heart and yet I'd never thought to phrase it that way (the power of all good quotes, yes?). It's not like "woah, angst! ah!" monsters. It's just... a feeling. This is perhaps one of the several reasons I feel compelled to craft stupid shit all the time. I could be making useful things, like scarves or sweaters, but instead I spend time and money making little monsters because that's what I think about all the time. It's what and how I often feel things. Of course, my heart and mind are still miles away from what my fingers produce... let me share an example...

I've got some yarn and a hook and some time. Time to make a monster! Six limbed, lanky, looming perhaps. A maw. Small beady eyes. Bulbous limbs that are fuzzy and then tipped with... something.

This is what my brain is thinking:
Sketch of crafted monster...

And this is what I actually produce:

Watermelon Monster

Well... hmmm... Could be worse I guess...

(Disclaimer : I sketched the image after I finished the monster... the "what am I making" idea shifts around as I go and I can never craft from my own sketches-- however occasionally I can work from others')

Anyway, yeah, so that's how I spent a lot of last weekend. The yarn I picked up from the ever-delightful Imagiknit. Had a good excuse to visit- brought with me a new co-worker from Colorado was in town on a business trip. I started the monster only 2 weeks ago, I believe, and finished 'em rapidly with the assistance of my newly acquired crafting accessorires : a CozE and all of House Season 7. I'm a crafting MACHINE when these ingredients are added!

A painless crafting process... Not sure how I feel about the results. I mean, it's "cute" and all but.... now what? I guess I'll list it on Etsy... "watermelon colored 6 armed monster" is a bit harder to sell then something that can be paired with the word "unicorn" it should be noted. Hmmmmm....

Anyway, random progress photos :
Watermelon Monster : progressWatermelon Monster : progressWatermelon Monster : backScale

I can't really say much about the process that isn't covered in this post from my old blog : Crocheting Monsters : How to Part 1. (this is from 1/29/2010 and there still isn't a part 2 yet... )

Hopefully my rapid success with this project (and still more DVDs of House!) will keep the yarn ball rolling and I'll finish a couple other projects. I unearthed several projects this weekend while continuing my tragically slow cleaning efforts... They are all at various stages of not-done-ness but all (well most) still have glimmers of potential!

I have problems finishing things...

Maybe they'll even look like the monsters I dream them to be

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I ♥ SF Food


You see that? You see that there? There's some sushirritos. They are fucking awesome. Living in San Francisco is fucking awesome.

My work office used to be located on an unfortunate block, just a pinch too far from down town. Not a nice location, kinda' dirty. Then we moved offices (about six months ago say) and I know work in the Financial District. Takes some getting used to- so many suits!- but there are definitely perks to working there. Namely the exciting food selection.

There's a Coffee Bar location across the street. If my taste buds shifted just so, I too could be in love with Curry Up Now- the Indian burrito truck that my coworkers rave about. Lets not forget about the Creme Brulee Cart that occasionally lurks around the block from my office.

When I go home, it's just as good. Last week Adam and I went to Flour & Water again- this time for the fantastical pasta tasting menu. Tonight Adam and I went to Local : Mission Eatery for romantic dinner. There's the original Coffee Bar location a few blocks away and Slow Club, which I'm slowly falling more and more in love with.

Yes, Paris had great food... but it was all always sort of the same type of great. I'm thrilled with the variety that I've uncovered in this city I live in. That it flowers and changes over time. Just last Friday I went spur-of-the-moment like to Bones (link goes to a PDF of the flyer) a food crawl on 20th street where all the food was themed off bones. Going by myself made me bolder then I ever am in a group- I had a small cube of what was essentially pig ear jello, among other things...

Bone Food
(click image for link to Flickr page with notes about each dish)


so... yeah... it's all relevant because good food makes for a happy Rebecca, and a happy Rebecca is a better coder and more prolific crafter...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Normal to you, exciting to me

You may know this, but I don't cook. I don't make food. I didn't know how to cook pasta or a potato till I was in college and living in my first apartment. Don't blame my parents- both of them cook, like to cook, and have successfully passed on cookie joy to my two sisters. Until I was several years into my relationship with Adam I really didn't have the pallet to appreciate food and therefor was satisfied with cans of soup, frozen pizza, and dry top ramen. Now Adam has me OoOoo-ing and Aahhaah-ing over fancy foods and I can never go back.

I still don't *want* to make food- my time is much too precious for the tedious task of preparing meals every day. But I'm willing to experiment a bit more now, mostly with the baking and desserts. Maybe I'll get bit by the baking bug and become a bread head? I know several in Mountain View who already suffer such fates already.

Followed directions from How To Cook Everything the weekend of the Superbowl to make oatmeal cookies. So underwhelmed.


On the up side I got to practice playing with the camera. I like the wide-angle len's closeups but I want... a smaller F stop? Is them the words? A smaller field of focus! This lens only went to 4 I think, and the lowest any we've got is 3 I think. Also need to get a tripod- balancing on tables and chairs can only get you so many shots. And while I'm at it, I want one of those remote clicker things- if I had that (or maybe just a good tripod) I could try my hand again at more stop motion. MMMmMmMMmm... stop motion....

But, yeah, cookies. Big let down. Pulling out everything ahead of time helped make it an easy, almost fun, process but they tasted CAKE-Y not COOKIE. Boo. A lame final product casts a gloomy light over the entire process...

(cookies have a slight reddish tint because I put a couple drops of food coloring in the dough. Food coloring makes everything better...

: sounds kinda' bad/snobby, I know. Sorry. But it's true. I'm an engineer and Adam's an engineer. We both work all day and come home late. If he wants to cook for fun, that's fine, but most often we'd rather just throw money at the problem and eat out/take out/order in then spend a moment of our few free hours doing "chore" like stuff...

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Pin Bird

Feeling guilty about not finishing anything lately. Have been working on things though!


As mentioned in the yarn hanging project, I have an unhappy relationship with my hat pins because they are not as awesome (see: sturdy) as I wish. They also came in a terrible plastic container that once opened never quite contained them. Even after pulling out a handful for the yarn project, they still don't fit.

Final pin bird

Wound up sticking them into a cork for storage and then just crafting up and around the thing... Unfortunately horizontal surface area is in high demand in my craft area and I couldn't put the pin poof anywhere practical. So I decided to mount it on the wall. The original idea was to have more of a crouched frog like creature... but as I was working I realized the pin poof too closely resembled to plumage of birds I've seen (most recently in Paris! Photos are almost ready to share!)
Final pin bird

Could be more bird-looking, but whatever. I'm calling it done because A) I need to get more shit done and B) I need to work on my "less is more". Adam said it was kinda' bird-like and that's good enough for me.

It's hanging above my desk... which still isn't clean enough to actually be usable, but is getting closer. It goes well with my reddish/purplish yarn chain and I hope to add more practical & pretty things to the space. Practaprettty? Practetty? I feel there's a great new catch phrase there somewhere...