Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Summer Days

We're a little bit than halfway through summer in the northern hemisphere and I can not be happier about that. Summer has always been my least favorite season, I don't like being warm at all and I hate being outside in the heat. And with living in Florida, we suffer through super high humidity with 90 degrees (F) heat, so it's like an oven. (An oven filled with blood-sucking mosquitoes.) So I stay cooped up indoors with the AC blasting while I job hunt (ugh!), knit, read, spin, and play the Sims 4 while listening or watching podcasts and TV shows to keep me company, while I dream of the cooler Fall weather that is in a couple of months (and a job that supports my hobbies!). I wanted to do a post today that shows some of what I've been up to since the last podcast episode I had recorded. Don't worry, I'll talk more about these on the podcast. But this is for those of you who don't watch the podcast. (How many times can I say podcast in one blog post?) 

If you watch and/or listen to any knitting podcasts recently or have been on Ravelry, then you might have heard about the Tour de Fleece that had run from July 1st through July 23rd. It is a spinning event that coincides with the Tour de France bike event and the goal is to spin the length of the tour and resting on the rest day of the tour. My goal for TdF was just to spin a little bit each day, I did end up having a couple of rest days because I just forgot the pick up the spindle, but I pretty much met my goal. I'm not quite finished with the braid of fiber yet, but I am close.

For my knitting, my projects had gotten a bit of love but today my attention has been on Jordan's Hagrid Sweater. I've been loving the cabling in this project it definitely hits all of my buttons.I also had realized that the errata that I thought I had found wasn't actually errata, I just misread the pattern, oops! I'm really enjoying the way it is working up.

Last week, I managed to finally finish my cropped sweater! I also got to wear it while running errands and it was perfect for the over air conditioned DMV and Library. All the details for this sweater can be found on the project page on Ravelry, I did do a modification for this pattern. The pattern is an Andi Satterland pattern, A Cropped Sweater for Winter. It's a free pattern that is great for a beginner garment knitter. I've never knitted one of her patterns before and I defiantly will be knitting more. This was also my first time doing the type of construction for a sweater, it had short rows to shape the shoulders, and it was super easy to do.

As I had mentioned above, I made a trip to my local Library last week to pick up the rest of the books in this series. Uglies by Scott Westerfeld is a YA Dystopian novel that I first read years ago, so it has been a while but it was one that I remember that I loved when I was in school, hence the reason why I have the first book in my personal library. It's an easy read for me, so it's going by quickly. The story is set during a time in the future where everything that we have right now is centuries old and is consider artifacts and anyone who looks normal or different is considered an Ugly. When people turn sixteen, they get an operation that turns them "Pretty" and they look like everyone else. I'll talk more about it on the podcast, so if you want to hear more check it out.

How is your summer going? Do you have any favorite summer reads and/or projects at the moment? I would love to know in the comments below or in the Ravelry group.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Episode 66: "Some Books"

You can find the podcast and show notes here on the blog, in the Ravelry group, and on Youtube.
You can also find me on Ravelry (samashwilliams94), Twitter (sam__williams94), and Goodreads, Pinterest, and Google+ (Samantha Williams).

The segments for this episode is:
What I've been up to?
Books: City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare and This Lullaby and Just Listen by Sarah Dessen.
Crafty Stuff: WIPs and Spinning, you can find the details of my project on my project page.
TV Time

Thanks for watching and happy knitting!

Monday, July 17, 2017

The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare

If you are a viewer of the podcast then you know that I've been reading this series for the last few months. But don't worry, I finally had finished the books, so you no longer have to hear me mumble on and on about it. I had finished the sixth and last book in the series just to other day and thought, what better way to get back into blogging than a book/series review? Well, I don't really want to call this a review, it's more of a recommendation. Because I think that more people need to read these books.

I had first read the first four books when I was in high school. At the time only the four were out, so I was stuck with a major cliff-hanger while waiting for the fifth to be released. Sadly though, it took me a while to pick them up again, other books and life stuff happened. During that gap, I did complete my collection of the series by adding the last two to my library and the author had written a prequel series. She had also written an add-on book and two spin-off series, a movie (that sadly, wasn't that great) and a TV series on Free Form. So it had gained a lot of attention in the last few years since I had first read them. Which it deserves, it's a great Young Adult series.

Cassandra Clare does a great job with creating characters that you can relate to and builds a world around them that you can lose yourself in. She is influenced by J K Rowling and had started writing Harry Potter fanfiction and you can really tell by the way the Shadow world is fleshed out in her descriptions. I would say her books would fall into the Fantasy genre. It's full of supernatural creatures; demons, angels, werewolves, vampires, and fairies, and lore surrounding them. You follow the main character, Clary, on her journey into finding her way through being a Shadowhunter and solving some major family problems.

I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a series you want to lose yourself in. Check it out!

If you want to leave a suggestion on what you want to see on the blog and/or podcast leave a comment below or in the Ravelry group. Also, if you want to be up to date on what I've been reading lately and you don't keep up with the podcast, then add me on Goodreads.

Happy Reading!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Episode 65: "Rough Patch"

You can find me on Ravelry (Samashwilliams94), Twitter (sam__williams94), and Goodreads, Pinterest and Google+ (Samantha Williams).
The Ravelry group is The Yarn Reader Blog and Podcast.
You can watch the podcast and find the show notes for each episode here on the blog, in the Ravelry group, and on Youtube, where my channel is under my name, Samantha Williams.

In this episode, I talk about the following segments:
What I've been up to?
Books: City of Lost Souls and City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare and This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen.
Crafty Stuf: FOs, WIPs, Spinning, Sewing, and Future planning.
TV Time
Gamer's Corner.

Happy Knitting!