It’s been a long time

Wow! A year and a half.

That’s a long time to let a blog go static.

I’m happy to say that knitting and sewing has not been static. Ok, the sewing has been a bit sluggish but I did manage to make one tote bag, and I’m almost done with the quilt I started eons ago. All I have to do it blind stitch the binding on, and it’s done. Maybe I will do that before the project reaches its 5th year.

I have knit lots of stuff too since I’ve been trying to reduce my stash. I love yarn but I don’t love storing it. I finished the socks too… just last month in fact. Last year, I knit several small throws. Pictures soon… maybe… my reliability factor is way down. Also, it has been really hot this year so yarn is not on my near and dear list. I might even throw in a picture of orange dudu since it came back to me after several years of wandering the globe (a very tiny portion of the globe).

I’ve looked over my blog’s stats and I’m amazed by how many people find it looking for Dinosaur Party ideas. Sheez! Now I wish I had blogged more about the preps for that party. And the 4-year old is an 8-year old… how did that happen?! I came out of limbo at some point last fall and whacked our jungle-ized (I made that word up just for this post) backyard. Then I invited a bunch of people and their parents over for Boy Wonder’s party. Actually, we had 3 parties for him in one weekend. It would have been 4 but Boy was completely pooped by Sunday, and couldn’t make it to his dinner-at-a-restaurant-celebration with the grandparents. We had fun but I’m afraid we set the wrong precedent for future celebrations. Boy has already started planning for his next weekend of chaos. Can we please go to Disney this year? It would be easier, and cheaper!

Hubby and I also put another wood floor down this year. I tried to do it myself again but I needed help this time. It’s awesome but it’s in my son’s room… I kick him out so I can do yoga on my beautiful floor. No, I don’t really kick him out… he let’s me use his room. I’m sure that won’t continue past a certain age but for now he’s very generous.

Current pet population: 2 cats, 2 dogs, 0 birds.

Finally: and I did this 5

The pillows on the couch were all wrong once I painted the living room walls. I created new pillows to make my couch and my walls a harmonious blend of cool, calming colors. I also put up new curtains (no pictures until the wrinkles fall out!).


See how I glossed over the big jump in blog time like it didn’t happen? That’s because I’m pretending it didn’t happen.

This is the last in the series of “I did this” posts.  I did do more stuff but I don’t have pictures of the remaining projects.  Also, I like working in the present.  Next post, what I’ve started doing recently!

And this 4

BC started kindergarten 4 weeks ago… he has brought home 3 viruses (there is some dispute where the second one originated but let’s say it was school).  I think he has missed more days than he has attended.  This last virus is rough… I think it’s the flu.  He gave it to me.  All crafting (and housework) has come to a grinding halt. I’m actually nodding off right now…

Before my head hits the keyboard, I’ll show you a little bit more of what I did while I wasn’t posting:

My living room before:

From September08

My living room after:

From September08

Not quite done but the color change was huge. I liked the golden color with my last couch… this newer couch looks much better with the robin’s egg blue (and have you noticed that everyone’s version of robin’s egg blue is different? … No? … Ok, don’t mind me and my fever riddled brain… just rambling… must find tissues!-).

Send cheesecake

If you are reading this, please send cheesecake…

Things have gotten really screwy these past few months… here’s the tip of the iceberg:

1. we “adopted” a rescue dog — I use quotes because it’s not a real adoption, we are her permanent family but we don’t own her outright.  She came to us underweight and sick.  She is also afraid of loud sounds (like thunder and 5-year olds).

2. our air conditioner broke down sufficiently that we had to replace it — did you know that ac’s are very, very expensive? (I’m a naive homeowner).  Picking someone to put a new one in was difficult… wading through their sales stuff, evaluating them as a company, etc.  I live in muggy, hot Florida… there is no way I can live without ac.

3. our car has 3 expensive repairs that need to be made (and aren’t they all expensive?)

4. one of my cats has kidney problems

5. the other cat has become so allergic to fleas he lost most of his fur and has sores (ick).  He moved out for several days the last time I tried to treat him, I hope he doesn’t repeat that when I treat him again this weekend.

6. the siding on our house was rotting something awful.  We tried to hire someone in December but he disappeared.  We tried to repair it ourselves but after 4 brutal weekends, I begged for mercy.  Hiring a contractor to do the job has been an awful experience too. It isn’t over, but I wish it was.  I also have to caulk and paint the new siding (because we already spent all our money!).

7. my mother just had a mastectomy for breast cancer.  I can’t put into words how this news has affected me. Just know that I am very sad.

I have so many things conflicting with each other right now, I can barely focus on doing what I can do (does that make any sense?). My mom overshadows all the other things but those things are still happening, you know what I mean?

I don’t want to leave you thinking that are entirely bleak:

I planted a garden this year for the first time in ages… it grew beautifully.  The garden is winding down now that it is getting too hot and humid but I will keep doing it now that I’ve started again.  Gardening really does my soul good.

My son grows beautifully too.  I had my son late in life, and I can’t describe the incredible energy I get from watching him develop into his own person (even if that person is occasionally contrary). Motherhood really does my soul wonders.

I’m still knitting.  At some point, I’ll take pics of all the projects I can find and post them.  I’ll also do Sandra’s meme.  Knitting and other crafts (especially sewing) also have a place taking care of my soul.

Keep crafting.  I’ll be back.

Catching up

Oh dear.  I have become one of those bloggers that drops off the face of the internets.  I always promised myself that I wouldn’t do that, and here I am… my apologies to anyone that noticed.

This year has been a little crazy… not as crazy as 2002 mind you, but still crazy.

As a way of catching up, I thought I would review my New Year’s resolutions and see how I’ve done thus far:

1. drink at least 2 quarts of water a day (about 2 liters)

Ohhhh!  I gave myself an easy one to start!  Isn’t that a great way to start resolutions?  Something easy.  I drink 2 to 4 quarts of water a day. I think I can honestly say I have nailed this one!

2. switch to green tea or white tea in the afternoon

I think I did too much celebrating on #1 there.  Green tea didn’t agree with me (something about funky sock odor)… to make up for it, I quit drinking tea in the afternoons.  The idea was to cut down on caffeine in the afternoon so that was good.

3. walk, walk, walk

I started out well but stopped quickly when an old achilles tendon problem popped up.  I limit myself to 15 minutes on the treadmill to give my heels a chance to heal.

4. walk the dog outside at least once a day

Poor, poor dog.  It is a good thing she is small enough to get all her running and exercise done in the house.

5. take my supplements/vitamins/minerals/meds without fail

Done, for the most part.

6. including the ever yucky cod liver oil (it’s so yucky it has to be a separate resolution)

Yucky, yucky CLO.  Yucky, yucky yucky.  It doesn’t matter how many times you take it, it never gets better.  But I’m doing it.

7. change out of my pj’s everyday… there are limits

So far, so good but my shark jammies are showing a good bit of wear from pushing this one to the limit.

8. spend the 15 minutes a day it takes to teach BC to read

Fifteen minutes a day?!  Who was I kidding?  Oh lordy, me!  I sort of switched us to other types of learning because teaching BC to read was becoming stressful for both of us.  He can read some but he chooses not to yet.  I will push reading again soon but at 5yo, I think he has plenty of time to learn.

9. use the yarn stash

Working on it.  If only my dear, dear friends and husband weren’t so sweet and didn’t keep enabling me with wonderful, new yarns, I would get further along.  How I suffer!  Thanks for the yarn, you all!!!!  I wouldn’t change a thing. Anyway, I just started a stash busting throw/shawl thingy.  I might make some progress before some sweet soul gives me more fiber. I hope not.

10. use the fabric stash

Ummmm… yeah, I should do that.  Does anyone want to gift me with a new sewing machine?…..  Hello?…. Anyone?….

11. keep simplifying where possible

Sometimes things aren’t as simple as you might think.  You might think one thing will make your life simpler but in reality it was a complication in disguise.  I’m working on it.  When I have the energy, I’m ruthless.  Other times, I’m not so much ruthless as I am a sentimental pack rat with a housekeeping deficiency.

12. make peace with a budget, any budget

I was actually doing this till the price of everything went through the roof.  All my savings essentially went right back out to pay for increased prices.

13. find humor… it’s gotta be here somewhere!

I did find some humor.  I have it right here… oh wait, where did I put that?…  No, seriously.

Ironically, when I went off antidepressants earlier this year, I found my funny bone had been tucked away at the same time as my cry bone.  You take the bad with the good, I guess.

I don’t want anyone to think I’m advocating kicking meds… I found my own path after much research and testing supplements on myself.  I have found some things that work for me but they aren’t 100%.  Antidepressants are a godsend when you need them.  That’s all I’m saying.

14. keep foods allergen free

I have been pretty good about the foods.  There are some things I never eat.  There are some things I eat occasionally…. all I want to know is what are the secret ingredients in Coca Cola’s “flavorings” that I’m allergic to?  And don’t say it’s the hfcs because I had Coke made with cane sugar and it did the same thing to me as regular Coke.  Just so you know…

15. eat foods I enjoy… in moderation

I can still fit the number of times I’ve had cheesecake on one hand.  I’m not suffering.  Mostly, when I want something “good”, I ask if this is something I really like…. brownies? not so much… caramel? sluuuurrrrppppp!

16. eat fewer foods I don’t enjoy

I’m getting better at saying no.  And I have found ways of informing MC that I’m really serious… mostly the brownie thing.  He is a choco-fanatic… me? not so much.

17. give MC and BC my full attention when they talk to me

I’ve been known to do this.  It would be kind of them if they would do the same for me.

18. demand MC’s full attention when I talk to him… turnabouts are fair

Ummmm… yeah, see #17.

19. clear out the garden and yard before it gets too hot (I’ve already made headway here)

I didn’t get as far as I wanted but BC and I did plant a small garden.  We also put flowers in some of my planters.  I have about 5 more years of neglect to make up for and the garden/yard will be pretty again.

20. plant something, anything, this year

Done.  Already ate our first tomato and two sugar snap peas (that would be 2 more than I thought we would get).  I’m expecting the zinnias to bloom any minute now.

21. get the house into some kind of presentable shape, and keep it there

You know this is one of those moving targets.  I get things organized and cleaned up… then BAM! the mess fairies tear it asunder.  (Cool… I used the word “asunder”.  Hehe!)

22. keep up with the blog

**ahem** **cough** **sputter**  Oops. **sputter** **mumble, mumble**

23. keep up with your blogs

**ditto**

24. find joy in everyday, and not so everyday, happenings

I do try.  Many days I fail.  Some days I do ok.  Other times I excel.

25. fewer resolutions!

Absolutely.

Sock model

I finished a pair of socks.

Sock glamor:

Do you know how hard it is to get a decent sock shot using your own feet? I suspect sock knitters all know.

This shot looks like my feet are shy… or I have to goooo.

I took these pictures in the middle of the day, and I’m wearing shark jammies.

Sock info:

Yarn: Berroco Comfort Sock (50% nylon, 50% acrylic)
Pattern: Classic Sock Pattern from Folk Socks by Nancy Bush
Needles: No. 3 steel dpns… how I wish I had some light bamboo No.3’s!

These are classic (hence the pattern name) top-down socks with heel flaps. I have big ankles (but not cankles… I hope) so I used the largest pattern size. It is a smidge loose so halfway between the medium and the large would have been a better size for me. Not that that stopped me from immediately starting another pair in the same large size.  I refuse to stray from the pattern after losing my knitting mojo a couple months ago. I definitely recommend Nancy Bush’s book… it is working wonders for my sock mojo!

The yarn is okay.  If you need a cool sock, this will do the trick.  If you need warm socks, don’t use this yarn.  The day I tried these socks on it was 63F in my house and my tootsies were so cold.  Now it is 83F and my tootsies are comfy.  Not that I’m wearing socks today because it is too hot… bare feet are the order for hot days when your a/c is broken.

Recycle equals Pretty!

I received a great package from Cara at This Recycled Life last week.  This bracelet and necklace are even prettier in person than in photos.   I got the bracelet as part of winning her blog contest, and I exchanged one of my handmade things for the necklace.  I only hope she is as happy with my needlework as I am with her necklace!  Be sure to check out Cara’s blog and etsy shop.