Tag Archive | vintage pens

Knitting, Drawing, and Kids

Last week was a big one: school started back up for my kids. I have a freshman and a senior. (Look at that boy! 14 and he’s already taller than both me and the girl, even in her new heels!)

IMG_4330

HOW? How is that possible, when I can remember them both when they were tiny and silly and goofy? I’m in total denial that my girl is a senior; I haven’t cried yet. YET. But I know it’s coming. I’m bracing myself. It’ll probably hit at the marching band Senior Night, when they recognize seniors and their parents on the field. I can’t believe that will be us this year. Speaking of band, Friday was the first game of the season, which means it was the first time I got to see both kids perform in the marching band.

IMG_4342

Yeah, it’s going to be a fun year. Emotional, but fun. I’m so excited to see the girl do amazing things this year and beyond.

I have been knitting a bit lately, just not as much as usual. I’ve got a second sock almost to the toe, which is good because I’m a little tired of this pair. It’s dragged on too long.

fullsizeoutput_c87

It’s probably dragging because I’ve been focusing on the baby blanket, the second of two I’m making for a friend who recently had twins. The good news is, I’m on the second to last skein of yarn! The bad news is, I’m tired of it.

fullsizeoutput_c88

But I love the color and the pattern and I can’t wait to gift it. Maybe I can finish this week? At least I can if I don’t get distracted by more enticing projects, like the Zuzu’s Petals I’m making in this stunning Ella Rae Lace Merino DK. Yes, it really is THAT BRIGHT!

fullsizeoutput_c8b

Yum! I just love it! And I just realized the blue theme I’ve got going in my knitting. No wonder I’m itching to cast on something new; I need some variation! I’m also ready for fall knits: bulky cowls, thick merino, hats, mittens…

Yesterday we were kid-free for a bit so the husband and I went on a fun creative date. In cleaning out my craft room yesterday, I discovered a vintage Parker pen. It belonged either to my dad or my husband’s grandmother (and yes, I do feel bad not remembering). I knew it was a Parker, and a bit of research told me it was a Vector, but I couldn’t get it open to put in a refill.

Well, that required a visit to the Pen Place. The kind woman had special pliers that could loosen the ┬ábody without damaging the pen, and of course she had refills available too. Despite finding two pens I really liked (both Lamy; I’m drawn to the smooth writing) I resisted and only bought some fun color ink cartridges. It was tough. And really only happened because my birthday is coming up so I know I have gifts coming my way!

After the pen store, we visited Blick Art Materials, since I’ve got this hankering to learn to draw. That, and I’ve always loved browsing through art supplies. That’s probably the only reason I want to to learn to draw: to be able to use all the pretty things!

IMG_4383

Again, I practiced restraint and purchased just two drawing pencils instead of the nifty set of eight in the metal tin. I’ve decided to earn those; they can be my treat when I improve a bit, if I still enjoy the process. What I like about this book is the encouragement that really counters my self-doubt, and the emphasis on the process rather than the final drawing. I went through the first two lessons and then my assignment was to draw three things that are special to me. The first attempts were pretty rough and discouraging, to be honest. But I kept going, and my kind family encouraged me and gave me a few pointers, and at the end of the evening I had this:

fullsizeoutput_c8c

And that pleases me! Although, looking at it now, I see a bit I can do differently to make it better. Maybe I need to try again today!

So many crafts, so little time. Sigh.

Anniversary Mini-Break

Today, the husband and I celebrate 20 years of marriage. Yep, two whole decades. That’s half my life. And the majority of those years have been pretty darn good, so I think we’re ┬álucky. To mark the occasion we both took the day off work, spent last night at our favorite B&B (Southmoreland on the Country Club Plaza in Kansas City), and spent today antiquing. We were hoping to find more Mission-style furniture for our house, but didn’t find a thing. We hit a couple of small towns that were kind of sad and run-down, though we did find a bookstore. And look what I found at one of the antique stores:

img_4241.jpg

A yarn section!! It wasn’t a great selection but I still walked out with two lovely skeins of sock yarn:

IMG_4251IMG_4253

And at another antique store, I found these little goodies. I didn’t need either of them, but at $2 each, they still came home with me.

IMG_4243

We were a little discouraged at not finding any furniture treasures, but we ended the day in Parkville, MO, and found an awesome store called Cool Vintage Watches. They had watches, of course, but they also had several vintage pens too. I really liked the silver/gold Montblanc ballpoint, but that didn’t really fit my budget. Instead I brought home this beauty.

IMG_4245

It’s a Sheaffer Targa 1020 M in Imperial Brass with a 14k gold nib. It came with the converter but also takes cartridges, and since I don’t have any bottled ink, I put in one of those and it writes like a dream.

IMG_4246

The pen is in beautiful shape. I can’t find a flaw anywhere. Plus, I already had a stainless steel Targa, so it pleases the completist in me to have a brass one as well.

IMG_4247

It came with this nifty brass case, which has only a couple of tiny scratches on the bottom.

IMG_4244

So, yeah, happy anniversary to me, right? I’m really pleased with my finds, and it was a treat to spend a relaxing day with the husband. We don’t get those as often as we’d like!