Friday, July 26, 2019

Birthday Yarn

I've been writing this blog for fourteen (14) years! Wowza!  I can't believe it. Generally, I write about my hometown, Los Angeles and it's history, along with the changes I've seen, hence, the name of my blog, "L.A. Is My Beat."  Along the way, I decided to also write about my preferred hobbies, Crochet and/or knitting and all yarny pursuits AND of course, ukulele!
Today, I must thank some of my good friends for gifting me with the most beautiful birthday yarn! I'm not sure what I'll create with this wooly goodness, but it will be lovely!
Lana Grossa "Cinque Multi" from Mary Jo
A sweater's worth of Berocco's "Borealis" from Jacquie
Zen Yarn in 3 colors w/project bag and sheep pin from Ruth
How cute is this project bag? There's a measuring tape sewn in!!
Thank you to Mary Jo,  Jacquie and Ruth for furthering my yarny obsession! You all know me too well!
Suzette combined my passions and crocheted this adorable ukulele ornament for me! I love it!
Crocheted Ukulele by Suzette
2019 was an excellent birthday celebration for me. Thank you to ALL of my friends and family for their good wishes, lunches and gifties! I am blessed.

Labels: , , , ,

Monday, July 22, 2019

Birthday on the Barge

A gift from Mr. Larry
I celebrated my birthday on Saturday doing things I love to do. Ukulele Workshop in the morning at  Boulevard Music in Culver City. Our instructor, Cali Rose, sang an original birthday song for me! I'm honored. After workshop I had a bahn mi sandwich for lunch with Mary Jo at Pho Show. Delicious! A bit later that afternoon I zoomed down to Santa Monica for my regular meet-up with the Ocean Park Fiber Artists. We ALWAYS have a great time! Thank you, Ruth, for the beautiful yarny gift! 
Home again, Audrey and Jeff came over and Larry drove us toward San Pedro to The Chowder Barge in Wilmington. We'd been to The Barge last April and loved it. Tom and Ellen joined us there.

We walked down to the dock and entered the Harbor's only floating restaurant. The Barge was built in 1934 as a support vessel for the original movie, "Mutiny on the Bounty." Later, it was moved to this spot and plastered over for stability. The exterior is not a particularly architecturally significant building, but the inside was worth the drive.

We ordered a round of beer and enjoyed the nautical / tiki interior of The Barge. It was so much fun having Audrey, Jeff AND Ellen and Tom with us. 
Jeff, Audrey, Tom and Ellen's arm

Tom Underhill (we are probably related) and Ellen Rooney Underhill 
We were a convivial group!
We ordered clam chowder (of course), a variety of dishes including salads, fried fish and more. Everything was delicious, especially the chowder. You know the chowder is good and thick when a spoon will stand up, all by itself, in the middle of the bowl!

We LOVE The Chowder Barge and plan to visit as often as we can! Thanks Audrey & Jeff, Ellen & Tom for joining us!
We are the Ellen Underhills!
Maybe Ellen and I should start a ukulele band...The Ellen Underhills!

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Wednesday, July 17, 2019


Getty Villa Courtyard

We toured two museums at opposite ends of town this week. Our friends, Jacquie and Bob were visiting from Las Vegas. First stop on Monday, The Getty Villa. We hadn't visited the Villa since the huge remodel and additions to the campus. There's an amphitheater, new offices and more gardens nows. It's a beautiful site.
Larry as painted Greek pottery

Bob and Jacquie battling a winged creature

We toured around the museum and were awed by the gardens and courtyards. Jacquie and I decided that we weren't into ancient art of Rome and Greece that much, but the whole environment at the Getty Villa is worth seeing!
Jacquie at The Getty Villa
After a late lunch at Mel's Drive-In in Santa Monica, we headed home to rest. Mel's Drive-In is located in the restored and refurbished Penguin Coffee Shop. In our youths, Jacquie and I spent LOTS of time at The Penguin. Visiting Mel's was quite nostalgic.
The next day we zoomed downtown to visit The Broad Museum. The exterior of the building is startling and amazing!
Broad Museum, photo by Jacquie Toy
OK, now THIS is my kind of museum! I love art from the 20th century and beyond! Edythe and Eli Broad have the most spectacular collection! We really enjoyed our visit.
Jacquie and Ellen in front of Ed Ruscha's "Norm's, LA Cienega,  on Fire"

"Bubbles" close-up by Jeff Koons

Jacquie in Wonderland

Visiting museums is exhausting! Just walking around on the marble and cement floors really takes it out of you!  
We always have a great time with Jacquie and Bob! We toured through a few of their old neighborhoods so they could see how our City has changed. We hope to visit them in Las Vegas in the Fall!

Labels: , , , , ,

Friday, July 12, 2019

Ninth Year!

Eve and Ellen on sorting and packing day

I really like the Ravelry Annual Dishcloth Swap! This is my ninth year participating. My friend, Eve is the original moderator of this Ravelry group and swap. From Year 1, I assisted Eve in the sorting and packing. After a few years, she made me a co-moderator of the group. It's the most colorful fun that a crocheter can have without actually crocheting and/or knitting! Following are my dishcloth entries for the past nine years.
These are my knitted cloths for this year

Here's how the swap works: You crochet or knit five dishcloths using the exact same pattern. You can change up your colors, so you do not get bored. You mail in your 5 dishcloths with a self-addressed, stamped return envelope. There are many rules about size, cotton content, etc. We send back five different dishcloths to each entrant. It's so much fun receiving 5 new dishcloths in the mail!

What's so special about a handmade cotton dishcloth? Why would I swap a shmatta (rag) with my friends? Because 100% cotton knitted and/or crocheted dish cloths are AWESOME! That's why! Other than the fact that cotton dish cloths are lovely to use, they are reusable and good for the environment. If you use a soft cotton, they are excellent to use for spa cloths on your tender skin. 

If you use an everyday cotton yarn like Sugar & Cream and add some ribs and bumps to your pattern, these cloths make excellent scrubbers for dirty pots and pans. They make outstanding gifts paired with fancy soap. Oh! You can make them using all kinds of PRETTY COLORS. This will cheer up the spot next to your sink, whether it's in the kitchen, laundry room or bathroom!

I usually crochet my dishcloths for the swap. I hadn't knit them in nine years, since 2011, so this year, I decided to knit the cloths and add a simple, single crocheted edge. This basketweave pattern (embiggen photo above) is one of my favorites.
The deadline this year is August 23, 2019. You've got PLENTY of time to whip up five dishcloths and join the swap!  Come on! It's so much fun!

Labels: , , , ,

Tuesday, July 09, 2019


The original LACMA campus, William Pereira & Accociates (1965)

I am very sad that more of the main buildings at the L.A. County Museum of Art will be demolished. Plans are to build a new LACMA campus with a bridge across Wilshire for more new buildings. It's great that the Museum is enlarging, but what about history? 
The original buildings at LACM, designed by William Pereira and Associates (1965) have a permanent look about them. They are solid, square and, at one time, floated on a moat of tranquility.
Calder Sculpture

The newer buildings at LACMA have obliterated much of the beautiful mid-century design by Wm. Pereira and Associates from the Wilshire Boulevard view, but the back of these iconic buildings are still evident.  Visitors can also walk in and around the Ahmanson, Hammer and Bing wings of LACMA and see their beautiful architectural lines. 

"Three Quintains" (Hello Girls), 1964 by Alexander Calder. Sheet metal and paint with motor

LACMA took away the beautiful water feature surrounding the buildings to add chunky stairs.  They plopped the Anderson Building up to the property line on Wilshire, destroying the gracious set-back.  True, the street light installation between the Anderson and the Resnick Plaza is wonderful.  The actual Plaza is excellent for large gatherings and parties.  With $650 million, can't the LACMA planning committee come up with a plan that does not tear down our treasured mid-20th century buildings?  This isn't Las Vegas where we blow up our buildings every ten years.

The Bing Theater

Bing Theater Lounge
What about the legacy of early donors?

You'd better hop over to the Museum soon before the Sculpture Garden and the original buildings, including the Bing Theater are gone. Sigh.
Color photographs by Larry Underhill

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, July 02, 2019

4th of July Prep

Do you have your 4th of July yarny projects ready for the festivities? You wouldn't want to show up empty-handed to the 4th of July party you're attending! Here are a few faboo items to whip up before the 4th. Hurry up! You've only got 2 days left! Links to all patterns are in the captions.
4th of July Beachbag

Patriotic Crocheted Stars  make excellent drink coasters!

Beverage Can Holder

Patriotic Garden Potholder

American Flag Wreath

Little Star Dishcloths
The Beverage Can Holders, Patriotic Potholder and Little Star Dishcloths are my personal favorites.  They're quick to crochet and make PERFECT hostess gifts!  Come on! Start now! I know you can do it!  Happy Pre-4th of July!

Labels: , , , , ,

Hiren's BootCD
hard drive recovery