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11  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Discussion and Questions / stubborn beds on: February 17, 2006 03:21:38 PM
I live in a rented house (in south Texas) who's backyard has been completely neglected over the years. We cleared out all of the hackberry and bamboo (or at least what we could find... that stuff is like zombies: comes back from the dead). Under all of that mess were flower beds!

As spring is rapidly approaching, we are getting very excited to have our own little garden. Unfortunately, these beds are in bad shape. I need to turn over all the soil and add new stuff to make it ready for my little plants-- but this is much harder than I thought it would be. After about one hour with a shovel, I was ready to call it quits.

Do y'all have any advice as to how to make the space easier to work with? The ground is very hard- will watering it make it more mailable, or just make a muddy mess? Should I go after it with a pick-ax, or just teach my dog to dig holes? Is pure elbow grease the only way to make it happen?

thanks for any advice!
12  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Discussion and Questions / Re: Tips? Advice? on: February 17, 2006 03:06:19 PM

This company has free catalogs that are absolutely beautiful. When you get it, flip through it and you will be hit with inspiration. You can order one or two kinds of seeds for well under $5 with beautiful results.
13  QUILTING / Quilting: Completed Projects / Brighteyes Comforter on: February 14, 2006 06:13:50 PM
I made this for my boyfiend for his birthday back in December.

First I made the tree trunk: I cut out the thing, then sewed many rows of this awesome string that is made of several colors of brown to make it look like tree bark. The leaves were the most time consuming part. I cut them all out of strips of fabric with really skinny lines of interfacing running up the middle (so i could then iron them in place). After I got all of those on, I sewed them right up the middle over the interfacing- I wanted them to be kinda 'flappy'. The birdie was embroidered and the words were written with fabric pen. It has a plain brown back, and I hand tied the whole thing with embroidery floss.

All in all I am happy with it: it has lots of texture and is plenty warm. What do you think?

14  COOKING / Dessert / Falafel? on: February 07, 2006 05:15:26 PM
I attempted to make falafel the other night, and I haven't had that big of a disaster in a very, very long time. When I put the little balls in the oil to fry them, they held their shape for a bit, but when I checked on them a few minutes later, they had turned into soup. I need help.
15  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Discussion and Questions / Strap Sturdy-fication Situation on: February 07, 2006 04:36:58 PM
I'm making a bag designed to hold some rather heavy cargo. I have double stitched (is that a term?) all the seams and used interfacing ironed onto a heavy-weight cotton material. Everything I have done so far seems pretty secure (can hold both of my fatty cats), but now I am stumped.

What is the best way to attach a strap? It is messanger-shaped: should I use d-rings or some other metal ring to join the two sections (strap and body of the bag)? What is the best way to be sure that the materials/construction holding the rings in place will hold up over time? I was thinking of using several layers of the cotton material to give the strap more body and strength- is this the best way to do this?

That is the most question marks I have ever used in one paragraph- obviously I'm a little confused. Thanks in advance for all your help!
16  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Misc. Gift Idea Brain Blockage / Bowie Lyric Ideas on: February 07, 2006 04:22:30 PM
I'm making my boyfriend this awesome bag to carry his records in. Him being a bowie fanatic, I stenciled a picture of the cover of Aladin Stone on the front, but want to include some sort of love-y DB lyric somewhere to make it more of a romantic valentine's day gift. any thoughts?
17  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Re: Futurama swap! on: February 04, 2006 03:03:44 PM
ctgirl, I think that time frame sounds perfect. This will be my first swap- I'm incredibly stoked.
18  KNITTING / Knitalongs / Re: 'Knitting Olympics' knitalong on: February 04, 2006 08:32:21 AM
Did y'all hear the segment about the knitting Olympics yesterday on NPR? I was on my way to the grocery store, and they did a nice little story about the challenge: what kind of people were participating, what they were making, etc.

I was planning on participating(blackberry from knitty), but got too excited with all that yarn sitting in my house. After I heard the story, I came right home and frogged what I had done so far. I can't wait for the games to begin.
19  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Re: Texas Swap on: January 31, 2006 06:16:38 PM
Did this fall apart?  Cry I had my heart set on it. I've never participated in a swap before, so I don't feel comfortable organizing it (nor do I think i'm allowed). If I can assist some lovely craftster to do so, I will do whatever I can to help (or bribe you: i'm good at bribes...)

20  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Re: Futurama swap! on: January 31, 2006 05:41:41 PM
"OK, but I don't want anyone thinking we're robosexuals."

I am totally in, robosexuals or not.
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