Thursday, September 29, 2011

Knit One, Purl One

Several years ago, Sister Goodlaff taught me how to knit. A few months ago, I discovered I've been doing it wrong this whole time. I clicked on an online tutorial for backwards knitting, because I thought, hey, that would be a cool skill, and it turned out I already knew how to do it. I also discovered that when I thought I was knitting, I was just mostly faking it. Oh, the things you can learn on YouTube...

Right or not, I consider myself a beginner-ish knitter. I have a fair amount of scarves, I dabble in beanies and berets, and I seem to enjoy torturing myself with the occasional baby blanket pattern when my friends and family are with child. My latest endeavor was just such a blanket.

One of my best friends from high school was due in May, right around the Goodlaff wedding date. Had I been a bit more organized, I could have had it done in time for the birth, but I wasn't and it wasn't. So it goes.

I slogged through the blanket all summer long. Even if you're not a knitter, it doesn't take a genius to figure out why knitting isn't really a good summertime activity. Oodles and oodles of yarn sitting on your lap in the scorching summer sun = not fun. I spent hours in the car, knitting ten, purling ten, until one day, I was magically, finally finished. Now that mama and baby have gotten a chance to see and appreciate all my summer stitching, I thought I'd share the outcome:

I love the way it came out, considering I wasn't really working off a pattern. It was more of an idea, proving once again that as long as it's relatively simple, it's hard for me to screw it up too badly...

My next project?  Something for my new niece, H!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

House Hunters: Seattle

Mr. Goodlaff and I headed to Seattle a few weekends ago, looking for the perfect little piece of the city to call our own. I'll just say right off--and anyone who ever has knows this--apartment hunting is a pain in the ass. So many pieces have to fall into place in order for you to find the perfect place. And it's even harder when you're trying to relocate and you're looking for apartments that will be available six weeks from the day you're able to visit.  It felt like Mr. Goodlaff and I were in some nightmarish version of House Hunters.

::Voice over begins::

The Goodlaffs are relocating from the Sierra Foothills of California to the lovely Pacific Northwest.  They are looking forward to living in civilization and walking to stores, shops, and restaurants.  Will they find a non-ghetto apartment with a large kitchen and huge closets?  Stay tuned as House Hunters heads to Seattle...

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Tutorial Twos: Rockin' the Ruffles

Why do we love ruffles so much? Is it the inherent girlyness? The breezy movement? The love of fluffy?

In any case, where ruffles are concerned, I count myself a fan. I think it goes back to the pink polka dot ruffle-butt bathing suit that I rocked as a child. Polka dots made the suit cool, but with the ruffles, I was unstoppable. So, in homage to my ruffle-butt bathing suit, here are a few tutorials for those of us with more--ahem--grownup tastes.

This ruffle skirt could be considered cheating, but it's so darn cute I just don't care.
The tutorial appears on V and Co., and it seems pretty easy to do. The key is to buy pre-ruffled material, some elastic and thread, and bam! Skirt.

I love how this skirt looks so dressy and professional with so little effort. I have every intention of making one, but because I don't have the option of pink polka dots, I can't decide between red ruffles or gray ruffles....decisions, decisions.

To "top" it off, here's another fantastic tutorial for this great ruffled top. There seems to be this trend in the blogosphere where you buy two basic, cheap tops and cut one to ribbons to make something new. I love it! Every time I find myself in Target or Walmart, I have to squelch the urge to rifle through the sale racks for shirts I don't ha
ve time to upcycle. Sigh.

This shirt tutorial by Tea Rose Home would look fantastic under a cardigan with some work slacks, which is just what I intend to do with it!

I can't wait to try both of these great projects! Now I just need the materials and the time to make them...

Tell Me: ruffles yea or nay?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Moving Out

About two years ago, Mr. Goodlaff (that's my husband) and I decided to pick a new place to live. Our top three options were Portland, Seattle, and San Francisco, so we set about city-hunting.

Between the bridge and the hills, San Francisco will always have a big piece of my heart, but the grit and the staggering expense of living in the city by the bay ultimately took it out of the running. Portland--well, Portland was lovely, but when they say "keep Portland weird," they mean it. It wasn't the city for us.

Then there was Seattle. Seattle was it. Beautiful, eclectic, fun. The Goodlaffs fell madly in love, and Seattle became our end-goal. For two years we've talked a big game about moving there, and at the beginning of this year, we finally decided that come hell or high-water, this year it was Seattle or bust.

It's a big move, to be sure. It means giving up my job and looking for another in a seriously crappy economy. It means leaving our family and friends behind. It means moving all of our books (I can hear the swearing already...). Though scary and thrilling, for Mr. Goodlaff and I, this move is a fantastic new beginning.

I heard a great saying today (it was on TLC's What Not To Wear--don't judge!): "life begins at the end of your comfort zone." It's kind of a crazy saying, but if you think about it, it's true. The times I've felt like I was really, truly living were the times when I was trying new things, new food, new places, having new adventures. This move to Seattle is pretty damn far outside of my comfort zone. If I'm to believe this little saying--which I do--the things that scare me a little (or a lot) are the things I need to try.

So, in that spirit: here goes nothing....

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Two Tutorials for a Tuesday

As I was pondering how to transition from the Goodlaff Bride to the Goodlaff Girl, I decided a weekly series was in order. I know it's been done and that I'm hardly the first to tread over this tutorial territory, but I stumble across so many awesome projects in my Internet wanderings that I thought I'd share the love and show you all the projects I keep adding to my ever-growing to-do list of crafty adventures.

From here on out, every Tuesday I will share with you two projects that I am madly in love with; hence, Tutorial Twosday. Everything is fair game on Tutorial Twosday! Hopefully you'll leave feeling inspired...

To kick off this series, I'll tell you that I'm feeling a little nostalgic during this back-to-school season. I wish I could go on a shopping spree for a new backpack, lunchbox, and my favorite office supply: new writing implements (old-school Ticonderoga #2 pencils and gel pens). I have fond memories of my Lisa Frank Trapper Keeper and the fresh hope that carrying cool accessories brings to the school year, so in that vein, I present a couple of Back-to-School inspired tutorials:

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Hi There!

Hello, world!

What do you get when you cross craftiness, cleverness, life adventures, too many carbs, and a wordy English major?

Why, The Goodlaff Girl, of course! (That's me, in case you were wondering).

I used to be a bride, but I'm happily veil-free now. If you've read me before, you can expect more of the same; if not, buckle your seat belts, because we are driving the funny car to crazy town.

Okay, not really.

But I am a lot of fun.

Welcome to my anything and everything blog. If it's on my mind, it's fair game. To you, I may seem random and scattered, but it works for me (besides, a creative mind is rarely tidy).

Look around, settle in, sit back, and enjoy!