Saturday, October 25, 2014

Opal Nails

October is my favorite month.

Not only is it beautiful, the weather is usually gorgeous, the leaves change color...

It's also the month of my birth, and the month I married my sweetheart!

October's birthstone is the Opal and it's my favorite gemstone. I'd rather look at a beautiful opal than diamonds. As a matter of fact, for my 10th wedding anniversary my husband asked if I wanted a big diamond ring and I told him truthfully that I wanted an opal ring! Since he spoils me rotten, he got me one!

In honor of this fabulous month and its fabulous birthstone, I did opal inspired nails.

Sunlight


Shade


This look was actually pretty labor intensive. I started out by dripping four different colors onto a plastic sandwich bag. I chose pastels: Blue (Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear #481 Breezy Blue), Pink (Wet 'n' Wild Wild Shine #402 Tickled Pink), Green (Essence Color & Go #146 That's What I Mint!), and White to add depth (Pure Ice #1100 Pretty N' Patriotic.)

Then I folded the bag in half and smooshed the colors together. While that dried I painted my nails with my normal base coat, then one coat of OPI Nail Lacquer Happy Anniversary.

Rorschach Test, I see nail polish! This is actually one of two I made. This one was too thin and you can see where it chipped right in the middle. 

When the polish on the bag was dry I peeled it up and put large pieces over my nails like a whole-nail decal. I don't think it was completely dry because it got a little messy around my cuticles. Otherwise it worked great. I trimmed the edges off and used a metal file to clean it all up.

After I got the swirly part on I added one sparse coat of sparkles with Nails Inc. London Special Effects #164 Knightsbridge. I added this one to try to get the "fire" that you can sometimes see in opals.

I finished up with one more coat of Happy Anniversary to top it off and dull down the sparkles. I added the Sally Hansen Big Matte Top Coat to give it the same kind of finish as an actual opal.



I'm pleased with how these nails turned out. They don't really look a lot like opals, but I did some new techniques and the finished result is quite pretty. I liked this so much I think I might challenge myself to trying out a new look every month based on that month's birthstone!


Friday, October 17, 2014

October Ipsy Bag

October's Ipsy bag didn't come in time for my birthday, but it was worth the wait!



Left to right: Épicé International Purifying Exfoliant, ModelCo VOLUMEYES Extreme Black Mascara, Noyah Lipstick in Deeply In Mauve, Ayres Patagonia Body Butter, Nicole by OPI in On A Gilt Trip (an Ipsy Exclusive!).

Two notes about this awesome bag: First of all, I did a little swatch of the nail polish on my thumb and it is spectacular! It's a matte gold that is begging to be an Art Deco, Egyptian, or Christmas design. I am loving this.

Second: The Ayres Patagonia Body Butter is DIVINE!!! It's thick, rich, and smells like an absolute dream. It's jasmine and rosemary, but it's not overwhelming or too floral at all. I'm not even sure how to describe it, but it's wonderful!

I know this is a small post and I haven't blogged in a while. I've got a couple of posts I'm working on and a few more in the tubes! Bear with me, please!

Friday, September 26, 2014

Abstract Autumn Nails

It's still really warm outside, but all anyone can talk about is Autumn.

Pumpkin Spice flavored everything is popping up everywhere. I'm not really a fan. Don't get me wrong, I like pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving dessert. That's just pretty much it for me.

The thing that does excite me is that the mountains are starting to change color. The fall leaves are absolutely one of my favorite things. That is the true sign of Fall.

Autumn is absolutely my favorite season. I was born in the Fall, so was my husband, and we were married in the Fall too. Those dates are all in October.

I love all of it. The cooler weather. The bulky sweaters. Wearing a hat and a scarf with just a jacket. Leggings and tights. Boots! Smelling wood smoke. Rainy days. Halloween. Thanksgiving. Football. There's just so much to love!!

In honor of the beginning of Fall I decided to do a subtle Autumn look.



I didn't want something that screamed "LEAVES AND PUMPKINS!!" I wanted something a little more understated. Since it's so hot, I just wanted a nod to the new season.



I had a really hard time getting the color to show up correctly in the pictures, so I painted some white paper and sent it through my scanner to try and show it properly.

It sort of worked.


The base is Color Club Mod in Manhattan, another one of the gifts from my friend Kristin. I'm pretty sure she got it in one of her Birch Boxes, but if you really like it you can probably find it on Ebay. I'm not really a fan. The color worked perfectly for what I wanted, but the formula was too thick and streaky. It was hard to deal with.

Full sunlight and showing my thumb.

I taped off the square with nail accent tape and then painted on Color Club Put A Pin In It. Still really loving this one. It went on perfectly and looks gorgeous. It's also from Kristin and her Birch Box.

The final dots look black, but they're really a rich bronze brown. They also smell. That's because they're done in Revlon Parfumerie Autumn Spice. They don't smell bad. Just kind of... Autumn spicy.

They look a lot cooler in person than they do in these pictures, and I'm really pleased with how they turned out. Once the leaves really start changing I'm sure I'll have some more Fall looks, but for now this is perfect.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Cinderella Nails

I needed a little retail therapy to lift my spirits, and Ulta came through for me. I got a mailer from them with a $10 off card in it. No exceptions, it was basically a $10 gift certificate except that I had to spend it all.

I bought nail polish. Of course.



I splurged and spent the whole thing on one bottle. Actually, the polish was $11. Totally worth that extra buck! How could I resist that sparkle?! The polish is Nails, Inc. London Special Effects in Knightsbridge. (The anglophile in me just adores this!)

I named this look after the blue base color, Sinful Colors Professional 1106 Cinderella. It's a light blue with iridescent pink undertones. A very princess-y blue. I used OPI Natural Nail Strengthener as my base, did two coats of the blue, two coats of the glitter (only going half way) and followed up with one layer of OPI Top Coat.



I've been completely mesmerized by my nails. I love how the light catches the glitter and shows so many colors. I've already got some ideas for other looks using these polishes.

I've been doing my nails so much that I'm getting pretty good at doing my dominant right hand with my very not dominant left. This time my manicure looks just as good on my right hand as it does on my left! This pleases me greatly.



I finished this look yesterday and took pictures. Today I thought I'd have a little fun and painted a matte top coat on my right hand so I could compare and contrast the two looks. The shiny top coat on my left makes the look much more vibrant and sparkly, but the right has it's own interesting effect. I think it looks like Winter, snow and icicles. Muted glitter.

Shiny on the left, matte on the right. 


Which one is your favorite?

For the record, I redid the shiny top coat after I took these pictures. I'm just not in the mood for mismatched hands and I wanted the vibrant sparkle.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

September Ipsy Bag

I received my September Ipsy bag on Tuesday, but I was too distracted to post about it.

You see, my dearest lovely friend graduated from Esthetician School on that day. It's a wonderful accomplishment, but it also meant that she was moving back to her home state of Washington. I was thrilled and proud, but also sad. There were too many emotions going on to worry about makeup.

I'm so proud of you Kristin

I also have to confess that this month's bag had a product that I gave away before I could get a picture of it. It was Briogeo Don't Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask for hair. My hair is short, non-damaged, and non-colored, so this was completely wasted on me. I handed it over to a friend with long hair that she dyes, so it went to a good home.

So here's what this months bag looked like after I gave away the conditioning mask:

Sorry the quality is so bad. I had a hard time with the lighting this time. 

First, let me just say that I love the actual bag. My 13 year old begged me to give it to her, but I'm keeping this one! It's buttery soft too, I've been using it as a purse the last few days!

Here's what it contained: NYX Hot Singles Eye Shadow in Rehab (Now I just have to try a smokey eye look!), Pacifica Natural Water-Proof Eye Pencil in Fringe, a Crown Brush brand Infinity Shadow/Crease Duet Brush, and Cailyn Art Touch Tinted Lip Gloss in Basic Instinct (I am in love with this lip gloss. It goes on with a gloss wand, but it looks and feels a lot like a lipstick. And the color looks great on me! I went to the Cailyn site and not only did I get a full size to try, the retail price is $19! That means the $10 I spent on this months bag was well worth it!!)

I seriously love Ipsy! Remember if you want to get an Ipsy subscription you should do me a favor and sign up through my link. Then I get points to put towards free stuff! Woo hoo!!

http://www.ipsy.com/r/69qo?sid=ipsypoints&cid=general

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Indigo Glitter Nails

I've been feeling sick and I knew I wanted white tips with glitter, but I couldn't decide which glitter to use.

So I let Joey pick.

He chose blue glitter. Ulta Salon Formula Nail Lacquer in Indigo-Go Girl to be specific.

In direct sunlight. 

It's definitely not what I would have picked, but I think it looks interesting. I think I'm going to have to try this again with dark blue tips instead of the white.

Diffused sunlight. 

White tips were done with a thick coat of Sally Hansen Insta-Dri in 120 Whirlwind White. I did two coats of the blue glitter and followed up with one layer of OPI Top Coat.

At night with flash. 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Sparks Fizzle Nails

I've been trying to get this manicure done for two weeks! Every time I get the base on I end up doing something that ruins it. That's the life of a mom!




The base color is Wet 'N' Wild FastDry in Silvivor. I like this polish a lot. it goes on nice and thick. Since I was putting a glitter over top, I just did one coat over my normal base coat.

The glitter is called Sparks Fly by Pure Ice.

It should be called Fizzled Out.

In the bottle it looks so much more interesting. A clear base full of tiny blue glitter with copper circles and large silver stars.



Unfortunately, no matter how much I shook it up I couldn't get the glitter to distribute at all.

I managed to get one star on my thumb.



I guess I should have expected this from a polish that only cost a dollar, but I was really hoping for more. The blue sparkle is kind of pretty, but the lighter glitters just fade away in the light base. I thought about trying again over a dark polish, but I don't think there's enough of the light glitter to make it worth it. I might give it a shot over a bright red, but I'm not sure.

I didn't bother to add a top coat. I'll probably be removing this tonight and doing something new.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Sunflowers

I got a hole in my dish washing gloves and so my nails have been mangled.

Since I have nothing else to show you, I give you pictures I took of some sunflowers.

I was driving home from dropping my kids off at school and the light was so perfect and the sky was so pretty. I just couldn't resist. I pulled over and took some pictures with my phone. I'm sure I looked like a crazy person, crouched on the side of the road wearing sweat pants and a hoodie, but the pictures are worth it.

This one is sized to be the desktop on my Chromebook. 






This is the sky looking East. The other pictures are facing West. 


All of these pictures were taken at about 8:30 this morning in West Weber, Utah. I used my phone, a Samsung Galaxy s5. I only say this because some people really care about those kind of details.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Eerie Ogden

Have I mentioned that I live in the coolest town!?

I live in THE COOLEST TOWN!! 

Picture via Eerie Ogden Tribune Facebook

A writer friend of mine, Randi, has started a quarterly newspaper for kids called the Eerie Ogden Tribune.

This isn't your ordinary newspaper for kids, Oh No! This is a paper filled with stories about mermaids, ghosts, witches and other supernatural creatures.

The best part is that all the settings are local!! That's right, the stories are set here in Ogden and the surrounding areas of Northern Utah!!

HOW COOL IS THAT!!??!!

Now, this paper is totally grassroots and needs help. Please, please, please go to their Kickstarter and give a little if you can! Any help is appreciated!!

Pictures via Eerie Ogden Facebook
Here is an adorable Word from Barnabas Wolfbeard! (For some reason I couldn't put the video on here. Just go to the link. It's totally cute!)

You can also find out more information on their Facebook page. While you're there be sure to enter one of the many contests going on! I won this awesome mug! They just gave away some werewolf ears! Seriously, this is so cool!!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Frenemy



It's been a year now, and I'm ready to talk about it.

I got dumped.

Friend Dumped that is.

First of all, I'd like to say that this is my point of view. Obviously I only have one side of the story. I will readily admit that I have huge faults, this story is just my account of what happened.

In January of 2012 I was introduced to a local blog that was looking for contributors. I went to an introductory meeting and met a lot of great people. I didn't start writing articles right away, but I started contributing photos and volunteering for events. I thought this time I spent made me not only a contributor but also a friend of the editors. Especially the Main Editor.

Main Editor has a child who is a similar age to my youngest, and we had some similarities in our backgrounds. After we became friends on Facebook I started spending a lot of time with her. She'd post things on Facebook, asking for rides or a babysitter so she could take care of blog business. She had neither a car or a drivers license. Since I was a stay at home mom with Joe not in school I had lots of time, a car, and no job. I volunteered a lot for these tasks.

We'd also meet up for playdates with other moms and kids, sometimes we'd meet at a park and sometimes I'd pick her up and drive. Over the months I became friends with the other two editors and started getting invited to more social events. Birthday parties, karaoke nights, barbecues. I was always happy to be a designated driver, since I was driving a huge Suburban and don't drink.

In June I started writing articles. In October I was put on "probation". I still don't really know why.

Now, just to set the record straight, I really thought we were friends. She confided in me. She invited me to things. Not everything was "Can anybody [give me a ride, watch my kid, help out]!?!" and I just happened to be able to do it.  She specifically contacted me too. I was there to listen to her personal problems. I was there to be supportive during her pregnancy. I took her to prenatal appointments in another town and watched her daughter for her so she could go alone. Another of the editors and I threw her a baby shower.

All this time I was also contributing and volunteering for her local blog. I was a friend and an employee. Only, I worked for free.

Once, she watched Joe so I could go to my Female Doctor alone. Once, she gave me $5 in gas money. Once, she gave me leftover brownies.

At the baby shower the other hostess provided Thank You notes, we had everyone address their own envelopes so that the new mom just had to write them and mail them. I did get a thank you note. In it she called me a "crafty such-and-such". I don't even know what that means.

That was all the thanks I got. Ever.

In May of 2013 I received an email from "the Editors" listing all the things I was doing wrong for the blog. Listing how horrible and embarrassing I'd been. The email came out of the blue and I was dumbstruck.

I was devastated.

I literally cried for a whole weekend.

I composed myself and sent an email back. I apologized for everything and tried to explain myself. I never heard back.

I could see that the email was sent from the Main Editor and that the other two editors had only been cc'd on it. I contacted them and they were just as surprised as I was.

I continued doing what I'd been doing, writing articles and volunteering for events, but I started to watch things a little more closely. Main Editor still asked for favors, still made empty promises of reciprocation, but I stopped volunteering. I noticed that whenever anyone else needed help she never stepped up. Ever.

Then, I noticed that I wasn't seeing her many, many self-promoting Facebook statuses any more. I noticed that when I volunteered for things for the local blog they were handed to other people unless there was nobody else to do it. All the perks went to other people. Never to me. In my year and a half of volunteering I got free tickets to one show, and the only reason I managed that was because the original person couldn't go. I had been with the blog longer than anyone (other than the editors) and I was constantly and consistently passed over. The new people were more important to her than I was.

In July I realized that she'd "unfriended" me.

I was never fired, I was passive-aggressively pushed out.

In August 2013 I asked one of the other editors to remove my material from the local blog and I left the blog's Facebook group.

Some time after that she blocked me on Facebook. I'm still blocked. I only know this because we have mutual friends and sometimes I see them reply to her in their posts.

I never posted publicly about this before now. I discussed it with the other editors, and I chatted about things with a few friends. That's it.

I still don't know what I did wrong.

Honestly, I don't care.

I know that I was a good friend. I spent my time, money, and emotions on a relationship that was one sided. I promoted her and her projects with enthusiasm. I was never anything but friendly and supportive. I gave and gave.

I got used up. When I had nothing more to give I was dumped and she moved on to other willing targets.

This has been a lesson to me. I've learned to look at my relationships. I've learned to be a little more selfish. I now know that any relationship is only good if it's balanced.

That doesn't mean that I expect payback for every little thing. It means that friendships are supposed to be mutually beneficial. I get just as much out of it as I put into it.

I've found that I have a lot of surface friends. People who are willing to turn up when there's going to be fun but are nowhere to be found when I just need somebody to listen to me cry for a while.

I also found have a few deeper friends. People who will come sit and chat with me while I do housework because I'll go crazy otherwise. People who will remember my birthday without Facebook reminding them. People who actually care about me. People who appreciate me.

******

Joe still sometimes asks to play with her little girl. It breaks my heart every time I have to tell him that her mom doesn't like me any more, so his friend can't come over and play.


Saturday, August 23, 2014

Dark & Matte Nails

I follow a bunch of nail people on Facebook and this week's look is inspired by Colores de Carol.

I got a little overzealous with the nail glue. 

The base color is a dark blue, Essence Color & Go 147 Miss Universe. It took three coats to get the color I wanted. I probably could have gotten away with just two, but I wanted a very dark base. 

When the color dried I put some striping tape where I wanted and painted one coat of Sally Hansen Big Matte Top Coat. 

My right hand turned out just as good as my left!

Then I put a dot of Kiss Precision Nail Glue and added one of the nail jewels that I found super cheap on Amazon. 


I don't have a lot of hope that the jewels are going to last all week, but they look pretty cool for now! 

 


In other nail related news, I didn't start out with this look. I actually wanted to do red nails. The same day I bought this pretty dark blue I also got a red color that had beautiful a holographic. 

Unfortunately this one turned out completely disappointing. It was more like a top coat, no color whatsoever. 

Pixel 233 Oh Golly Gee
Very disappointing. 

Monday, August 18, 2014

Happy Nails

It's been a rough little while for me, so I decided to do something on my nails that I knew would make me happy. Kind of like Comfort Food but on my nails. Comfort Nails.



The polish is OPI Happy Anniversary. It's a sheer, sparkly, metallic white. It goes with everything, it's cheerful, and it's classy without being boring. Love this polish, it's easily one of my all-time favorites.

First I did white tips using Nalene tip guides and Sally Hansen Insta-Dri 120 Whirlwind White, because white tips make me happy.

Then I did two coats of Happy Anniversary. For some reason the white tip on my left index finger went wonky when I did the first coat. Instead of removing it all I decided to use a Nail Thins Ladybug decal to cover the little goober spot. I think it turned out extra cute that way. I didn't do a matching decal on the right hand. I think it looks adorable just having the one tiny bug!



I followed up with two coats of OPI Top Coat to protect things.


Saturday, August 16, 2014

Celiac Disease

I've mentioned in my last couple of posts that I haven't been doing very well. This is the post where I explain why. Warning: It's a long one.

I have Celiac Disease and I got "glutened".

Celiac Disease (or Coeliac Disease for those who speak the Queen's English) is an autoimmune disease. It's a very serious, chronic disease that can only be treated by going on a gluten free diet. Never ever eating anything with gluten in it for the rest of my life. There is no other way.

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, and most oats. If gluten gets to my small intestine very bad things happen.

You see, everybody's small intestines have these wonderful little things called villi. The villi are little fingers that stick out and act like vacuums, sucking up all the nutrients in food. Not just at the top like a little tube, but all along their length. Those villi get all up in the food like a pig wallowing in the mud, happily absorbing all the vitamins and minerals they can.

With Celiac Disease those happy little piggy villi react horrifically to gluten. The gluten damages those little fingers. It flattens them out. Instead of long fingers sticking out, I end up with smooth sides. The surface area for absorbing nutrients diminishes greatly.

Image from UCLA Health

Basically, untreated Celiac Disease is the same as walking around malnourished. This is why as a pre-teen I walked around looking like a concentration camp survivor. That's not an exaggeration, kids can be mean but they're usually pretty honest in their cruelty. That's not to say that people with Celiac Disease can't be overweight. They totally can be, it's just another way that their body is trying to cope with the disease.

As I said, the only treatment for Celiac Disease is to go on a completely gluten free diet. This isn't something I do for fun, to be trendy, or to lose weight. I have to eat like this for the rest of my life. If I don't there are consequences, immediate and long term.

The immediate effects are pretty gross, to put it delicately I get gastric distress. It's a lot like food poisoning, but it takes a little longer to kick in. I also get at least one giant cystic pimple on my chin, just in case I don't feel bad enough I get to look terrible too! The next few days are filled with headaches, joint and body pains, and my depression kicks in too. For the next few weeks I'm weak and tired, and much more likely to catch any sicknesses that are going around. If I'm lucky I'll start to feel better after two weeks.

Those are the effects of just getting a little bit of accidental gluten. Some times I don't even know where it came from. Usually it's from eating out and getting cross contamination* sometimes it's as simple as getting a kiss from Joey too soon after he's had a sandwich.

Long term the effects are much more dire. Cancer. That's right. If I get too much damage in my intestines I can get cancer.

"If a person with celiac had the disease undiagnosed for a long period of time, or fails to maintain a gluten-free lifestyle after diagnosis, the chance of developing small intestinal cancer increases. Those with celiac disease are especially more likely to develop lymphomas in the small intestine because of their compromised immune system. In the past the increased risk of celiacs developing lymphomas was quite high, 40-100% more likely. However, more recent studies have shown that the risk of lymphoma is slightly higher than the normal population—much less than previously believed—and that this risk reaches unity with the normal population after a gluten-free diet has been maintained for several years." From www.CeliacCentral.org

Like I said, this is no fad diet. This is serious stuff.

I wasn't diagnosed with Celiac Disease until I was 26 years old. That's a pretty long time to be malnourished. My daughter was diagnosed two weeks after me. She was six. Luckily for her, we caught it before it could cause any long term problems. She's completely healthy now (as long as she maintains her diet.) She's a healthy weight and she's growing very well.

Unfortunately for me, I'm still having problems. My bone density is low. I don't have osteoperosis yet, but my bones aren't as dense as they should be. I've lost height. When I was 18 years old I was 5'8.75" tall. As of July 30th I'm now 5'7" even. I'm also dealing with random pain and tiredness that my doctor calls Fybromialgia (I'm not 100% sure if I agree with the diagnosis and will have more tests done when I can.)

Since I'm still having problems my husband and I have decided that our whole house is going to go gluten free. When we go out to eat the boys are welcome to order as much gluten as they'd like, but they aren't going to be bringing any of it into the house.

This is going to take some serious preparation on my part. Since I somehow got accidental gluten in July (twice judging from the nasty pimples that popped up) my house has gone to the birds. I'm not the best housekeeper in the best circumstances, with being sick for so long the house has a similar look to a disaster area. I've got to get things back in order so that I can get in the kitchen and cook a lot. No more quick convenience foods, I need to make it all.

To add insult to injury, I've been on a lower dose of my depression medication. *sigh* It's a long story, but the gist of it is that my doctor moved two hours away and I couldn't get in contact with anyone to get a prescription refill. When I finally did manage to catch somebody on the phone it was only to be told that I had to get a new doctor and a new prescription. By this time I was nearly out, so I had to start taking a smaller dose to try and ration what remained. I'm currently taking 1/3 what I need. This means I'm barely functioning. Luckily, the new prescription will be ready by some time next week. Within a week or two of being back on my full dose I should be back to normal. Well, normal for me anyway!

So there you have it. The full explanation why I've been feeling so terrible for so long. Things are starting to look up, but I've got a ways to go.

If you want more information I have another blog, Everyday Celiac. I haven't updated it lately, but there are some resources there.

*Cross contamination is when I get gluten, not from eating something containing gluten, but from gluten being transferred to my food. For example: this happens when a restaurant used a cutting board to cut my food right after cutting bread, or when they fry my food in oil that has had breaded food fried in it. Things like that are called cross contamination and they make eating anywhere but at home a gamble. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

August Ipsy

I've been a little out of the loop. The past couple of weeks have been really busy for lots of different reasons that I'll have to go into later.

My Ipsy bag for August came today and I just want to take a second to post about it.


Left to right: Lord & Berry Silk Kajal Kohl Eye Pencil, Absolute Lip Balm in Green Apple (I just got it today and I already love this stuff!), Urban Decay Perversion Mascara, Manna Kadar Cosmetics Sheer Glo, and Glamglow Youthmud Tinglexfoliate Treatment.

So far this is the first bag I've received that's not flat. This poor thing got a little squished in the mail, but I think with a little time it'll pop back into shape. Betty has already claimed this one for her school pencil pouch!

Remember, if you want to sign up to get your own Ipsy bag use my link and I get points! http://www.ipsy.com/r/69qo

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Root Beer Bottle Cozy

My husband likes to drink his root beer out of a bottle. I don't blame him, it tastes better that way! I wanted to make him a cozy to help him keep it cool and to keep his hands dry in this humid weather. Yesterday the Root Beer Bottle Cozy was born!



My husband doesn't drink anything stronger than root beer, so I thought it would be funny to make it look like an old-timey whiskey jug. Call me an ironic hipster if you want. I'll own it.

I wrote down the pattern while I was making knitting it up. I haven't test knit it so let me know if there are any problems! This is the first pattern I've submitted to Ravelry.



Root Beer Bottle Cozy

Supplies:
Small amount of Brown Worsted Weight Yarn (MC) (I used a Heather Brown color Lion Brand Wool-Ease from my stash. It lost its label a long time ago, but I think the color was called Mink.)
Small amount of Cream Worsted Weight Yarn (CC) (Again, I know this is Wool-Ease and I think it's called Wheat but it's also from my stash and without a label.)
Size 6 DPNs or long circular needle for working Magic Loop (I prefer Magic Loop.)
Stitch Marker (optional)
Blunt Yarn Needle

Instructions:

Cast on 10 stitches in MC and join for working in the round. Place the stitch marker to mark the beginning if you'd like.

Round 1: *(K1, KFB) repeat from * (15 stitches)
Round 2: *(K2, KFB) repeat from * (20 stitches)
Round 3: *(K3, KFB) repeat from * (25 stitches)
Round 4: *(K4, KFB) repeat from * (30 stitches)
Round 5: *(K5, KFB) repeat from * (35 stitches)
Round 6: Purl across
Rounds 7-20: K across

Switch to CC

Rounds 21-27: K across

Switch back to MC

Rounds 28-30: K across
Round 31: K 1, SSK, K 11, K2tog, K 2, SSK, K 12, K2tog, K 1 (31 stitches)
Round 32: K 1, SSK, K 9, K2tog, K 2, SSK, K 10, K2tog, K1 (27 stitches)
Rounds 33-34: K across
Round 35: K1, SSK, K 7, K2tog, K 2, SSK, K 8, K2tog, K 1(23 stitches)
Round 36: K across
Round 37: K 1, SSK, K across (22 stitches)
Rounds 38-39: K2 P2 across (You'll end up with a K2 at the beginning and the end.)
Round 40: SSK, P2 K2 to the last two stitches, K2tog (20 stitches)
Rounds 41-50: K1, P2 K2 to the last stitch, K1.

Bind off with a super stretchy bind off. I kind of made something up but any stretchy sock bind off should work. Just be sure the bottom of the bottle you want to use will fit.

Weave in the ends and use MC to embroider the three "X"s in the middle of the cream section.


Abbreviations:

MC = Main Color
CC = Contrast Color
K = Knit
KFB = Knit into the front and the back of the stitch
SSK = Slip, Slip, Knit. Slip two stitches as if to knit and then knit these stitches together
K2Tog = Knit two stitches together
P = Purl


*Please let me know if there are any mistakes in this pattern!!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Weeping Angels and Rainbows

I haven't been feeling very well the last few weeks. My depression is acting up, and I think I got some accidental gluten.

That doesn't mean I haven't kept busy! When I was feeling really down I somehow managed to convince my husband to go to the local yarn store, The Needlepoint Joint, and pick out some yarn for me. Reason #545 why my husband is the best, he hates yarn stores.

It worked! I was cheered up and I turned that yarn into a hat and mittens.


They're very soft and very cheerful. I haven't blocked anything yet, when I do the lacy pattern will show up better. I found the patterns on Ravelry, they're called the Cafe Au Lait Tam and the Cafe Au Lait Mittens (expanded from the Cafe Au Lait Mitts.)

I call them my Rainbow Tam and Rainbow Mittens. You can check here for the project page on my hat, and here for the mittens. I'm not 100% done with the mittens yet. I am going to knit a lining for them so that they're extra warm. I plan to use them for driving the kids to school on cold winter mornings.

I've also managed to do my nails. I trimmed them super short again, and wasn't up for being super creative. I decided to just swatch the Weeping Angel polish I got from A'dor Beauty Supply when I bought the other two polishes that I love.



This one didn't disappoint!!

I couldn't help but use my new hat as a background. 

It's got a grainy texture reminiscent of stone (just like a real Weeping Angel) in a pretty silver color. There are also some subtly iridescent flecks of glitter. Not nearly enough to be overwhelming, just enough to be fun! This is another polish I bought for my daughter but fell in love with!


Pictured is two coats (I probably could have gotten away with one, but two looks better) over my normal base coat. I didn't do a top coat because I didn't want to ruin the texture. It's been a few days since I polished them and so far I haven't had any chipping.



Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Ice Angel Nails

I let my 13 year old daughter design my nails this time.



Okay, actually I just told her she could pick out my polish. She took that and ran with it.

I did just what she wanted me to. Using my sticker guides I painted the tips with Sinful Colors 1106 Cinderella. It's a sheer blue (with just a bit of pretty pink sparkle) so I had to really glop it on. I had to go back over it in a couple of places. Luckily I knew it was going under other layers, so it didn't have to look pretty on its own.



The next layer was Hard Candy 804 Ice Pop. I daubed it on pretty thick. For the record, I bought this polish for Betty. It's fun looking, but not normally my style. At least it's blue.



For the final step in this design, I did the top half of my nail in A'dor Beauty Supplies Tears of an Angel. I did a lot of daubing with this one too. Still totally in love with this polish, but I think it's a little much with all the rest...



To finish the look I added my usual OPI Top Coat. I asked Betty if she wanted me to do the matte top coat, but she insisted on the gloss.

She also gave this look its name. Ice Pop + Tears of an Angel = Ice Angel. Pretty clever, don't you think?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

One Coat Wonder

I was given this polish as a gift and it's my new favorite.



That is just one coat of Color Club Professional Nail Lacquer in Put a Pin In It. One coat over my normal base, no top coat or anything. This stuff is so cool. It went on nice and thick but it took a really long time to dry. 

I am in love with this color. It's a very subtle metallic in a rosy, silvery, gold-ish color. It looks amazing with my skin tone. I've been looking for just this shade for months and it just fell into my lap! Thanks so much Kristin!! 

Kristin (who is now my Hero) received it in a Birchbox, and that's the only place you can get this color. I've read that other bloggers have had trouble with this polish chipping, but so far I'm not seeing an issue. 

If you're paying attention, you'll notice I'm hiding my thumb in those two pictures. That's because my thumbnail ripped off. 



I honestly don't know how it happened. I was getting ready for bed and my thumb felt funny. I looked down and the nail was barely hanging on. I tried to clip it off, but I still managed to injure the side of my finger. 



Can you see how red my thumb is? It is so sore! It's like a paper cut. I know I'm being a baby about it, but every time I touch something or grab something it hurts again.