Gregory’s Busted Bike Bear

So, ever heard of a crank shaft? Well, it’s the crazy part of a bike where the peddle meets the rest of the gears. Basically, when you peddle, it turns the wheels. Unfortunately, mine fell off. Busted right off as though it had been sliced off, while peddling. My bike is my only transportation. So, watching my bike fall apart made my heart sink. Thankfully, there is a bike repair shop only two blocks away. Walked my mangled little bike up there and asked first, if they could repair it. “Of course.” Second, “Anything else you see wrong with this bike???” One busted crank shaft, a wobbly wheel, and some temperamental set of sketchy brakes later, he tells me everything that’s wrong with my bike and offers to fix it……For $70. You would think it would be easier to ditch this one and find another one at a yard sale or at the Salvation Army. But, if you’ve ever been out hunting for a second hand bike, you’ll find they aren’t as cheap as you think they should be, and if they ARE…..well, they end up with broken crank shafts, wonky wheels, and pissy break pads.

IMG_1849To make a very long story short, and I apologize for it taking so long, my bike is ready. But, I don’t have a bear (or tiger, or bee!) ready to sell to go get my bike out of the shop. So, what I thought I’d do is show you some hand dyed, hand spun skeins I have that are one of a kind (with the exception of the Cascade in blue) that I can make a bear out of FOR you, if you’d like. I have these four colors, but what I thought I’d do is, if you’d like a bear made out of one of these, I’ll whip it up. But, it would have to be first come, first served. So, if you like the red skein, I’ll make you a red bear. But that would be the only red bear. If blue is your thing? Pick the blue and I’ll whip him up JUST for you. I can only get one bear out of each skein.

So, pick the color, claim your bear. A true one of a kind, Gregory’s Busted Bike Bear. They’ll be ready to ship by next weekend, if not sooner. So! Thank you for helping me get my bike out of the shop! And enjoy the bears!

Just click the pic of the color you’d like. Thanks again for helping me out!

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Uhhh, Bumble Bear?

IMG_1846Wanting to finish off some of the Vickie Howell yarn I had left over, and loving stripes these days, I made an attempt at a bumble bee….Hmmmm. Not sure how I feel about the little guy. I guess you’ll be the deciding factor. If you like him? Boom! I know he’s more loved than I thought. If not? Ah, well. We’ll stick with bears and tigers from now on, eh? I don’t think I’ll do another bumble bee. But, I did love playing with the stripes and loved playing with a new face and antennae. So, if you’d like to adopt my one of a kind, only one I’ll ever do Bumble Bee Bear, click here. It’s grocery day. He’s ready to ship with a signed card by me.

Now…..back to bears :)

 

Sheep(ish) with Boiled Peanuts

IMG_1841If you’ve followed this blog for a while, you know this day was coming. You knew it would happen, and if you REALLY read this blog on a regular basis, you know were anticipating today as much as I was. That’s right, kids. It’s boiled peanut season and today I got my first big, gorgeous, beautiful, luscious delicious batch :) Oh man, oh man, oh man! Boiled peanuts are just one of those simple pleasures I look forward to. For a few months in the summer, they are a big part of my weekly diet. Love them, I tell you. LOVE them. I had been calling the produce market for a few days, asking them if green peanuts had come in yet. See, here’s the trick. Check the magnolias. Yep. When the magnolias start to bloom you know two things are ready. One, the ocean is warm enough to jump in. Two, green peanuts are ready for boiling. So, as soon as I saw the magnolias across the street brighten and bust open with a bloom, I started calling the produce market. And earlier today? They finally came in :)

IMG_1837So, while my peanuts were boiling, I worked up this little bear using some of Vickie Howell’s yarn. This is “Sheep(ish)” through Bernat. I really liked working with it. I love it’s slight fuzziness. Easily manageable, but still nice and tender. Great yarn! I’d really like to work with this stuff more. I picked the yellow because….well, damn. I really don’t have an answer. I liked it! I dunno. I was feeling inspired by the golden glow of the early summer sun, I guess :) Next time I’m at Joann’s I’ll have to pick up more colors and play some more. Yeah, really liked this yarn and looking forward to making more bears with it. As for now, this is the only one, so if you’d like to adopt him, click here. He’s ready to ship with a signed card by me.

Ok, I know I have a lot of updating to do (and I will!), but for now? Gonna go tear up some boiled peanuts! Yeee HAAAA!

 

Look Out For That Black Bear

I know I haven’t written very much lately. My blog posts have been mostly about selling bears. True, true. But, I figured it would be best to get my rent under control earlier, rather than flipping out at the very end of the month. But, don’t worry! I’m still filling orders and writing notes to myself about all the great things I’ve been wanting to tell you about. Like the podcast coming up, Macchia’s new vases, my trip to get my first batch of boiled peanuts of the season and the old man across from me who was a dead ringer for me at the age of 82. All sorts of things I’m looking forward to talking about, but for the moment, I’m anxious to get the month’s expenses taken care of so I can have a sense of peace.

I saw an article on Bungalower.com, which is basically a blog about my own and surrounding neighborhoods downtown. We have a black bear rummaging around. I haven’t seen him, but apparently, he’s a big one, lurking from massive oak, to heavy brush, moving stealthily through downtown.

IMG_1832So, I made this bear in his honor. I had been worried about this yarn, feeling it was too dark, you wouldn’t be able to see his eyes. Once I finished him this morning, I knew I had nothing to worry about. His little face came out great. Handsome. And the I fell in love with the flecks of color scattered about. He’s made from a yarn called “Tibet” by Omaghi Filati from Italy. I used up all the orange I had, now I have this really great black with colorful specks. He measures 12″ tall, a mix of wool and acrylic, and is ready to ship with a signed card by me. If you’d like to adopt him, click here! The sooner, the better!…..and if you live in Downtown Orlando, look out for that black bear!

 

The Last Omaghi Tiger

IMG_1820IMG_1822IMG_1823There was just enough the Omaghi Wool from Italy to finish up one last tiger. BARELY. Whew! Now, the other tiger the other day went to so fast, I whipped this guy up last night and this morning. He’s got the claws, of course, AND! he has a very snazzy tail. I’m loving the whiskers. And that does it for the Omaghi. Nice. He measures 12″ tall from head to toe and is ready to ship with a signed card by me. If you’d like to adopt him, click here. Now, this is only the third tiger I’ve done, so I don’t do them often. So, again, I like to consider him “collectable.”  If this tiger gets adopted today, I get a chance to rest the hands for a day :) Which is a pretty nice thing to look forward to it. And what will I do with my time? I’m feeling like a bike ride up to this little Cuban place up the road for a Cafe Con Leche. Beautiful! I’ll be sure to take pictures and bog about it. Something like, “Never Judge Something by How it Looks.”

“Why, Yes….Yes, I Am.”

IMG_1816Nearly almost finished with all of the Omaghi Filati from Italy. The tiger and lion were exceptionally popular yesterday. So, I decided to finish it all of with a bear. Of course, right? But, the face on this little guy with his white muzzle gave me the notion of him sitting in a room, comfortably on a table, or bedside. And when asked, “Are you the little bear that has come to keep me safe?” His reply, with just the hint of a smile, would be the very quiet and admirable, “Why, yes….yes, I am.” I might have just enough to do another tiger, but for now, it looks like this is all that remains of this really cool wool from Italy I’ve had the best time playing with.

IMG_1818If you’d like to adopt him, click here. He’s ready to ship with a signed card by me, measures a poofy 12″ and is ready to stand on guard.

A Teased and Tussled Mane

IMG_1800I played around with the idea of another lion yesterday. Too hot to go outside. Watched some great disaster films (weird guilty pleasure), nibbled on a salad (mostly fresh tomatoes, another guilty pleasure), and knit my little heart out working on this lion. Now, I don’t do them often, for the simple reason of the mane. Man, that mane can take some work. Truly! I crochet each of those threads all around his head, THEN separate the strands individually, THEN tease the whole bit with a tiny comb. But, what a great effect it ends up being. He looks good! I made him up with some of that amazing wool from Italy that I still have tons left of.

IMG_1809So, tomorrow I’m working up a tiger with it….Should look nice. Who am I kidding? He’ll be ADORABLE. I have most of the bits and pieces ready. I just need to stuff and sew. And as I took a photo of him, I could only think, “Wow….he does look like Hobbes….when the PARENTS see him.” If you’d like him, click here.

IMG_1802So, if you’d like to adopt my lion, click here. I don’t do them often, so consider this not quite one of a kind, but a definite rarity. Total collector’s item. He’s ready to ship with a signed card by me. Snag him fast! Really, I mean it :) Oh! Check it out. I even gave him claws on his paws! And a poofy, teased tail!

Stamp Out Hunger

SOH2015_button_linkSo, not sure if you’re aware, but if you’re not, then that’s why I’m here :) Tomorrow, May 9th, is the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive sponsored by the post office. It’s pretty simple, any can of food you have, or any non perishables in a box, you place in a grocery bag and place at your mailbox. The mailman picks it up, and off it goes to be distributed to your local food banks. I’m a big fan of things like this. I truly am. It is an effortless way to help your local charities fight hunger. I know what hunger is. I’ve experienced it many times in my past. And I may not have much now, but this is a very easy and convenient way to share the same blessings that have been bestowed upon me. I’ve learned to shop well, eating well on a limited budget. And it can be done! Cans of tuna were buy-0ne-get-one-free this week at Publix. So, that is a very easy way for me to help out and keep a can for me, and a can to donate. Cans of beans were on sale %50. Boom! A can for me, a can to help out. Now, your grocery bag doesn’t have to be busting at the seams. If you have a can or two in your cupboard of something you haven’t really a fancy for, by all means, hand it off to the post office tomorrow and help out someone hungry. Get your little plastic grocery bag, raid your pantry and see what you can help out with. Nice! Little things, everyone doing little things truly does make a big difference. :) If you want more info, here’s a link to the post office website explaining the whole deal.

IMG_1780I still have this little guy. So sad, so unwanted :) He’s been lingering around my apartment for a week now and I just look at him sadly. I keep telling him, “Don’t worry, man. The right one will come along and take you home.

Gonna head out now outside and enjoy the evening. Remember my last post about my pizzas? We’ve affectionately started calling them “tortizzas.” With the left over tortillas wraps, we’re busting out some quesadillas and watch “Agent Carter.” Funny how Phillip has me learning more about this comic book, cosplay world that he adores so much. I’ve recently learned I’m dating an “Otaku.” Not sure what it is? Ha! Then you’ll just have to look it up. :)

Don’t forget to spend the evening raiding your cupboard!….oh! And give that sad bear a home! Peace!

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When You Face Challenges…

When you face challenges, meet them head on. Don’t avoid them, don’t look for distractions, and whatever you do, don’t crumble into a stressed out ball of anxiety. We all face challenges. But, one person’s challenge is another person’s daily routine. I’ve had my fair share of challenges, sure. I’m thankful, however, that those challenges did nothing more than remind me that the best aspect of life is how brilliant things are, how beautiful things are, once challenges are faced, conquered, then written in a journal of memories to recall upon when reminders are needed that you will survive.

I’ve been doing that more and more lately. Sure, when money gets wildly tight and pressures mount, I get a little panicky….but, then I pull out my book and flip to a random passage, read and remind myself of greater challenges I’ve faced in my life, and remember with something of a determined smile that I am not alone, I have you. I remember with a straightened back that I have accomplished so much in this short time as “Mad Man Knitting.” I remember with a very strong walk that I manage to always keep going, always.

So, when you face challenges, remember that you have been through them before, you will be confronted with them again, and that as long as I’m writing this blog, YOU are never alone out there.

:)

I had the best time last night. Phillip and I made “pizzas” and watched a movie while I did some knitting. Ok, WE call them “pizzas,” but they were actually tortilla wraps with cheese and sliced tomato on top, baked in the oven for a few minutes. Oh, yeah! If you’re tight on cash, but still want a little pizza treat, give it a try. You get 10 tortilla wraps for about $2. A block of cheese for another $2. Tomatoes are on sale for $2 a pound, so we were able to get 3 tomatoes. Now $6 seems like it might be alot when you can just get a frozen pizza for the same prize. Screw that. Those things are just poison on cardboard. So bad for you. Just because you don’t a lot of money doesn’t mean you can’t eat better food. AND! For that same $6 we made 4 pizzas. Yep, that’s right. 4 pizzas. Another block of cheese and a can of black beans and we’ll take the remaining tortillas and make quesadillas. Any tortillas left after that? Grab a dozen eggs if they’re on sale and BAM! We’ve got breakfast burritos. Nice! Why do I mention this? Because after the challenge of the first of the month, we were able to sit back and enjoy ourselves with what we had…..and LOVED what we had and never thought of how something more would be better. Our little “pizzas,” our movie, and our time together. Challenges will pass….but the greatness that happens when challenges are over? That last soooo much longer.

IMG_1780So, I’ve still got this bear that is ready to be adopted. He’s ready to ship with a signed card by me. He’s a nice plush, bigger bear than my normal, made of wool from Italy and measures a little more than “12. If you’d like to adopt him, click here.

IMG_1784I also have this other one. Why stripes? Why not? I was having a little fun. It kinda reminds me of Waldo. :) He’s made of Fisherman’s Wool and Wool Ease from Lionbrand, measures a little more than “11 inches and is also ready to ship with a signed card by me. To adopt him, click here.

Hope you’re all having a great week so far. Challenge coming at you? Smile proudly and say, “I can do this….”

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The Four Bear Attempt Pt. 2

IMG_1778So, I didn’t manage to get the 4 done that I wanted, but here are three, the three I was needing to get rent finished up by today. I really like taking these new pics of them outside by the succulents. Says something about spring, and their colors. Especially the orange-brown bear by the Terra Cotta pots, and the other two bears very close to the colors of the plants. They’re all ready to ship with a signed card by me, each of them made of wool.

Man, am I tired. Just click on the pic of the bear you’d like to adopt. And I really hope you’d like one. That would certainly help out.

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To order an autographed copy of “Will Knit For Food” or a Limited Edition personalized, signed paperback copy with t-shirt, click here. 

 

If you appreciate this blog and would like for it continue, please donate. Every dollar helps!