Wednesday, October 27, 2010

netflix in canada

Netflix has come to Canada. Ever a movie lover, I was keen to give it a go and promptly signed up for their 1 month trial.

The Canadian version only streams  videos online—there are no mailed videos, which to be honest, I don’t really get personally. I’d never wait for a movie to be mailed to me. I guess I’m just too much of an instant gratification kind of gal.

So far, about 3 weeks into my trial, there are my impressions:

  • It actually sucks up a lot of bandwidth (more so than the illegally streamed videos that can be found online, with lesser video quality).
  • Some of the selection rocks (if you are looking for Indie or old films, it’s great).
  • However, more modern films and TV shows? Forget about it. Honestly. Mad Men is about 2 seasons behind and forget about things like The Vampire Diaries or True Blood or …

My husband is not a fan. I like more obscure movies, so I am. But unless they update their lists fast, I don’t know if there’s actually enough to keep me there long. $7.99 isn’t much, but then again, why pay for the same things I can find for free if what I find for free is more current than what I’m paying for? You know?

I’m all for video quality and am willing to support the service, as long as the service offers enough variety to keep me coming back.

At this rate… well, I’m not sure if I’m going to keep my membership once the trial is up.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

paper pumpkins tutorial

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Image source: WhipperBerry

Ever on the lookout for paper art ideas for Halloween! Rolled paper pumpkins! Click on link above to find out how!!!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

origami ornament giveaway

Christmas is around the corner, believe it or not and I’m starting to think about ways to spread the holiday cheer (yes, already) and have decided to offer an origami ornament giveaway.

Interested? Of course you are! Who isn’t interested in free stuff!?

I’ll give you up to 3 tries (third time is the charm after all) to win your own ornament, here’s how (there’s always a catch!):

Main entry: Visit my etsy shop and then leave a comment letting me know which ornament you like the most (colour, style, etc) . Please make sure if you’re not using blogger, to leave me an email/blog link, etc so that I can track you down afterwards! 

for extra entries: 

Follow the blog publicly via Google Friend connect (if you already do… just drop me a comment and let me know) or Facebook or Twitter

or/and

Tweet or blog about the giveaway (send me a link or include an @lotustreecrafts tag)
Giveaway will end on Nov 27th 2010. I will use random.org to pick the winning number, notify the winner and announce it on my blog. If the winner does not respond within 48hrs, I will choose another winner and will announce it again in my blog.

Good luck to everyone and thanks for playing along!

NOTE : Please remember to include some way of me contacting you if you win.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

dancing skeletons patchwork scarf


So I decided to make another scarf... this time in celebration of Halloween! Have I ever mentioned that I LOVE Halloween? Yup, it's true. But since I already own too many scarves.... I'm willing to share this one. I've listed it on etsy here.

Friday, October 22, 2010

educational reform

I think this is fascinating and raises some good questions about our education system:

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

knitting night adventures

Last night I went to my first knitting group (always the individualist, I did crochet). It was fun and I’m glad that I did it. I’d always been curious to go and it was a nice, relaxing way to spend the evening, getting my craft on!

Here’s what I made:

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Close up view:

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It was really simple. Here’s the recipe for those who want to be in the know:

  • Add the desired amount of beads for single strand onto thread. (Do not cut)
  • Chain between 15-20 stitches, depending on preference
  • Pull up bead, then continue chain after the bead (5-6 stitches)
  • Do this until out of beads for the strand
  • Chain the same amount of stitches after last bead as done for before 1st bead
  • Repeat for the amount of strands desired
  • Attach necessary jewelry pieces to hold together and wear!

And my 2nd project (started last night, completed this morning):

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It’s not a great picture, but it’s inspired and modified from this.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

patchwork scarf

My latest crafting adventure was to make a patchwork scarf for a friend for her birthday. (I’m all about the sewing these days).

Because she loves blue and looks awesome in green (by the way, my s isn’t working well on my computer so if it’s missing please forgive me… I’m pushing on the key about 3x harder than the others and sometimes I miss that it’s not there…)

Anyways….

The scarf was a combo of brown, green, and blue. Here’s a sample of me hard at work, piecing it together:
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My cat, Mayla, wanted to contribute, so she supervised while I was sewing (I’m literally leaning back as far a I can go to get this shot of her on my lap):
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Seriously, what i it about cats that they want to be right in the midst of things at the most inappropriate times?

Here’s what I ended up with:
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As you might be able to see, the back it trimmed with a soft moss green fleece, for comfort and warmth during our cold winter months.

Close up:
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I really wanted to create something that was bright, funky, warm and fashionable as a gift. What do you think? Did I succeed?

Friday, October 15, 2010

recycled art: toilet rolls

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Ok, I don’t know what I’d actually do with them, but they’re gorgeous!

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Don’t you agree? This last photo I could see being more something I might do…  Both images originally blogged about at Indie Fixx

Thursday, October 14, 2010

updates: 1 year anniversary, quilting and gym memberships

honeymoon 072

So Paul and I have survived our first year of marriage. We celebrated by heading up to the Laurentian, hiking in the fall forests and a nice dinner out.

Everyone say that the first year of marriage is the hardest… and ours was definitely full of changes. We married, traveled to France, flew home because of family stuff in the New Year, had my baby brother move in with us, sold our condo, paid off most of my student loans, moved above the in laws for more space and to save money, adapted to life with a 20 year old (I love you little brother but there’s a big difference between 20 and 33), traveled again to Cuba, and started saving for our down payment. Like I said, our first year of marriage has been busy. And if the first year is really the hardest then I’m looking forward to year 2 being calmer, but I suspect it won’t be.

In between all the chaos that has marked this past year, I’ve learned so much about myself and my husband and I know that every year we spend together will only reveal more. It never ceases to amaze me how complex people are and how you never really know someone completely because time continues to peel back layer after layer even as we continue to grow into ourselves.

And I am immensely grateful for having a partner who encourages my growth and supports my many interests and projects.

The latest being a quilting adventure. We gave the blanket to the couple on Friday, last week and yay, it was a hit. It’s nerve racking wondering if all your time and effort is well received or if the recipient feels more like, yeah, I would have preferred something bought and less handmade. But as far as I can tell, that wasn’t the case, so I’m relieved!

Now on to the next adventure… couples gym membership. I have to cut back on the Nia because of my knee (too many quick movement and turning is making things worse again), so we’ve decided to join a gym together this winter. I’ve never joined a gym with a boy before… so we’ll see how it influences the dynamic.

Friday, October 8, 2010

fall wreaths

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I love this fall wreath tutorial from Alisa Burke (image from her site). It combines my love of recycled book pages/paper, and the idea of recycled/upcycled art.

My one suggestion, if you decide to try something like this at home (or if I ever get around to trying this at home), is to use an old metal coat hanger for the back frame.

Other wreath ideas I’m loving:

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A spooktacular button wreath from Modge Podge Rocks! (Image from site) I totally made something like this for my Grandma when I was a kid. (Mine looked something like this).

Or another fun modern fall wreath from Modge Podge Rocks (link takes you to this particular tutorial, where photo comes from):

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Isn’t it pretty? If only I had a door this year where I could display such goods…  Stupid apartment living (don’t get me wrong, my apartment is lovely… just not wreath decor worthy).

Thursday, October 7, 2010

candle making: drip candles

Once upon a time, a long time ago, a high school colleague gave me a handmade drip candle she'd made herself. And I admit it, ever since I've wanted to make my own drip candles.

So last weekend I did. Hell, I figured if she could do it, so could I. After all, I'm at least 15 years older than she was at the time when she made the candle so how hard could it really be?

Honestly? It's not that hard, except it takes forever!

10 candles took me 3 hours. Maybe there's a better system but I don't know it. Don't get me wrong, it was gratifying to make my own candles - but it is anything but cost efficient.

I'm not sure if I'd do it again. I think that using moulds is quicker and just as satisfying. Maybe even more so because it's less time consuming.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

diy post-it note holder


Cute tutorial to create your own little notebook holder! from Kimberly Crawford. Yet another project to add to my list!

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