Monday, March 30, 2009

Finally The Shisha Top!

As promised, here are the pics of the shisha embroidered top which I think came out quite nicely! Siobhan looks so cute in the pictures! I am working on another shisha piece that I'm almost done with, I think it will probably become a bag. I also think I'm going to make a little drawstring bag with a Celtic knot. If it turns out really well I might take it over to the Rampant Lion; maybe she'dd take a few on consignment.

Saturday, March 28, 2009


This has become my favorite song lately. I like Sugarland a lot, but posting a country video is a bit different for me. However with lyrics like this:

Ain't no rhyme or reason
No complicated meaning
Ain't no need to over think it
Let go laughing
Life don't go quite like you planned it
We try so hard to understand
Irrefutable, indisputable fact is
PssshIt happens

How could I help but liking it a lot?
This is the best live video I could find over on youtube, I might replace it later if I find anything better.

Friday, March 27, 2009

The Best Laid Plans

I was actually going to take pics of my shisha apron top and make a mola today. But Chris messaged me and I'm going fishing in the DuPage River instead. We fished yesterday, too, and I was the only one who landed anything, even if it was a little bluegill. At least I know I can land a fish.

The pictures are of a reversible bandana I made from a thrift store like new napkin and a piece of vintage cotton for the other side. The applique was inspired by a piece of Afghan needlework I saw recently. I really like it.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Windmills and Karma

Yesterday, John Chris and I went to LaSalle to fish. The lake is really big, bigger than the Braidwood lake. We had never been there before ; John and Chris were looking up fishing conditions in our area and the report said Braidwood was really good right now for striped bass on chicken livers. So John bought chicken livers and we got up before 6 am yesterday and headed south. It's not too bad a drive, but the directions from MapQuest were totally wrong once we had gotten off the express way. We spent a little time being lost, but after getting directions (and breakfast) at Burger King we finally got there. As you are driving up the road towards the lake you start seeing windmills, just set in the farm fields as far as you can see in the direction across from the entrance to the lake. It was so cool! I had never seen a wind farm before, I didn't realize how big the windmills actually are. They were just kind of slowly turning in the wind, generating power for the power plant I'm guessing. LaSalle is a cooling lake too, and we could see the power plant from where we were fishing. Maybe someday there will be enough power generated from the windmills they'll be able to shut the nuclear plant down.

As far as the fishing goes, it was pretty good for some people; unfortunately I was NOT one of them. John and Chris were both catching stripers and catfish, and Chris caught a little hybrid bass, but I caught nothing. I don't know what I was doing wrong; it took me a couple of times of loosing my bait before I figured out how to get the livers to stay on the hook, but once I did I was getting lots of hits, I just couldn't land one. I did everything I could think of, I switched to a smaller hook, I used smaller pieces of bait, I set the hook sooner, and then I waited and set it later. I thought I was setting it harder but maybe it still wasn't hard enough. I don't know; there was no reason I shouldn't have landed at least one of those fish. I think it's bad karma; I was trash talking so much last year because my year started off so good that I'm paying for it now. I can't think of any other reason. John told me not to worry about it; anyone can have an off day.

Melissa went home Saturday evening. We went to the thrift store Saturday before she left and I bought a few things. More and more people are going these days and it's really essential to get there before everything is picked over. I can start riding my bike again with the warmer weather and can go first thing in the morning as often as I want.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Catching Up

We had St Patricks Day dinner last Sunday at Moms; we didn't have it in on St Patricks Day because it was on Tuesday and the kids wanted to go to Punky's anyway.
Well Rich called and said he had gotten hung up and was going to be late, so we started eating without him. We had finished except for dessert when he showed up with Melissa! John, Mom and I were so surprised! Siobhan knew she was coming, but I didn't have a clue! She's been here for the past week; she goes home tonight.

I've been pretty busy all week.I spent time with Melissa, although she spent time visting friends in the city while she's been here. Chris was off last Monday and John took the day off so we went to Braidwood where we caught several small catfish. Every one out there was catching them; there were a couple of people fishing for walleye, but I didn't see anyone catch any. I think we are going again tomorrow, or we might try LaSalle.

Melissa, Sio and I went with Carla and saw Jimmy play with his band the The Telepaths last night. I had never seem them before, and I really had a good time. They do some of their own material and a little other stuff. I really liked a song they wrote called Area 51, that was the last one they did and it was pretty good. A lot of the original music was commentary on current issues and I liked that. I've never seen Jimmy play his electric guitar before. The whole band was pretty enthusiastic; it was the last night their drummer was going to play with them. Carla said he was leaving because he was getting married. I'm guessing he'll be asking to come back after a few months if that's his reason. You can't repress your creativity just because you are getting married.

On another musical note, I went to the Rampant Lion in Villa Park yesterday and bought Dervish Decade. It is excellent, and I love Kathy Jordan. For anyone who reads this post regularly, the Rampant Lion is THE place to go for Irish music.

I also worked a very nice piece of shisha embroidery which I am going to turn into a top today. Once it's finished I'll post pictures. Things seem to have picked up a bit on Etsy, Sio had 2 sales in the past couple of days.

Saturday, March 14, 2009


I think the pants made from the bedsheet came out really cute! I used a brown and cream stripe cotton from my stash for the bands on the bottom; it looks plain brown in the picture. The total cost of this particular pair of pants was under $3.50. The bedsheet was only $2 to start with, and I still have enough of it left to make a knee length skirt. So lets say I used 2/3 of it, that would be about $1.35. I used about 3/8 of a yard of the contrast fabric for the bands and drawstring, so that was about $2. They didn't take very long to make either, just over an hour. I am going to sell them for $15 I think. I made them a medium and they are a little tight on Siobhan.
I also saw a great idea for a picnic blanket over on Etsy's top tutorials for last year. You take 16 really big squares of fabric; the directions say 16 inches. You sew them together into rows of 4 squares, then you sew the rows together. You sew it together with a backing, you can tie the layers together or put in a batting and quilt them, which is what I'm going to do. Then before you bind it you add little triangular pockets to the corners on the underside, then you bind it. When you take it to the park or beach, you can put stones in the pockets to keep it anchored. I just think it's the greatest idea and I want to make one.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Celtic Embroidery

I got a book of Celtic transfers a few years ago and I never really used it. I finally dug it out of the files and did two small pieces of embroidery; one is in kelly green floss on a tannish cotton which I made into a little pouch and put in my Etsy store. The other is a bit more complicated and is in two colors on light grey kona cotton. I haven't decided what I'm going to do with it yet.

I am making a pair of pants today out of an old bed sheet I picked up ages ago at Salvation Army. I'll get Sio to model them for me for pictures later on. I think they are going to be cute.

I also found a great 6 part YouTube series on how to make a rag rug that is not braiding, which I consider a plus. The rug is knotted and joined together as you go instead of being sewn after the braid is done. I have another old bedsheet that I actually bought at a garage sale with the thought of making a crocheted rag rug. I'm going to try this technique in the next couple of days and I'll post pics of the results.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

The Corrs Joy of Life

I know I've said before that I'm not a huge Corrs fan, but this is an excellent video:

The title "Joy of Life" expresses it all on this one.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Gallows Pole

Alright, here's GBS last September in NYC, covering this song. This is the best youtube video I could find.

GBS Update

Ok, so I was wrong. Thanks to Chris, Melissa and Siobhan I just got back from Great Big Sea! As usual, the show was fantastic. My hands are hurting from clapping so much; you'd think I know better since this has happened before. They played at the House of Blues this time, and the show was EXCELLENT, but I think the venue wasn't the best. It's smaller than even the Metro and it was wall to wall packed and there really wasn't much dance room. But other than that it was great; they did a kick ass version of Gallows Pole which is on the newest album. I feel a bit like a traitor, but they do it better than Zep does. I know, I know, it's an awful thing to admit to! I hope they do another live dvd to go along with this tour, because I would buy it in an instant if Gallows Pole was on it. They start it out more like the folk song that it was originally written as, although they do jam the end!
The first band was good too, although Sio didn't care for them. They did some really good traditional Irish, some bluegrass and some gypsy music. I liked them, they were a good warm up band.
We had an hour after the show til our train went so we went down in the small bar where there was a funk/bluesy band who had a really good horn section; they were also really good. Musically, it was just a good night!

Thursday, March 05, 2009


GBS from the new album live in Albuqurque New Mexico. The song is not traditional, but it's one of my favorites from Fortunes Favor.The video isn't the best, but it's as close as I'm going to come.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Solas covers Dylan

I haven't blogged in awhile, I have the 2 weeks free membership from Ancestry and have been trying to save as much information as I can before it's up. However, I couldn't resist putting this new video up from Solas. It's a great cover of Bob Dylans "Seven Curses":

They are going to playing in Batavia on the 14th of this month, and since it doesn't seem very likely that we'll be able to afford to see Great Big Sea maybe we can see them instead.