A Long Time Coming

Okay, so this hasn’t been much fun for a while now and I’ve essentially been dragging the death of this blog out for ages. At a few points, I even tried revamping things with a few name changes and face lifts. However, nothing could hide the fact that it needs more than a cosmetic overhaul to renovate and get to the root of the problem with this blog.

It is all over the place because I am all over the place. It has no vision because I lack vision and/or clarity of purpose at the present. I need way more organization if I’m going to have a successful blog/website experience. I also need to dig a hell of a lot deeper than surface level if I’m ever going to write an effective anything.

So, effective today, I am shutting down this blog and I will not come back to add to it in this form. Maybe, in the future, I’ll be back once I’ve developed an idea from the chaos but not until I’m relatively sure I’ve got at least something to work with.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go and work on some much neglected crafting.

See you when I see you. I am still online, just not here. There are links all over this blog if, by some rare chance, you would like to communicate with me.

Unintentional Hiatus

It is good to be back after so long. I was ill. Not with the ‘Rona but with my usual tenacious illnesses which have plagued me for far too long.


Anyway, on to the exciting shit.


What has been happening during this time?


Nothing! Yay! Wahoo! Yippee! *round of applause*


Seriously, I haven’t been up to that much. I’ll detail what little I have been doing but it is nothing in comparison with what I would love to be doing.


During this unwanted vacation, I’ve been quite taken with knitting. Specifically Knitting and not just the whole art of yarn craft. Drilling down further, I have a particular interest in two-color Brioche knitting like you wouldn’t believe. So, with the help of a Stephen West video, I taught myself the basics of that stitch. I need to learn the increases, decreases and castoff but I think I just about have the ongoing knitting of it down provided I don’t make mistakes.


To further my education in this, I’m going to follow a pattern/class called Lockdown Brioche School I found on Ravelry. It is shockingly free as of the writing of this blog post. The designer asks that you donate money to a hunger relief charity in lieu of payment.


Aside from my Brioche madness, I have been enamored with my much neglected Antler Cardigan and have made great strides in knitting on it. I’ve trebled the length of the sleeves from where they were previously. I’m now ten increase rounds from straight knitting on the sleeves. Once I get there, or possibly before, I can add the next skeins of yarn and continue with this project until the sleeves are the length I desire.


20210228_131521 sleeves 


I am crocheting but it isn’t at the forefront of my existence right now. I have things I owe people that are crocheted items, so as far as that, that’s where my head is at with regard to crocheting.


Right now, I’m working on doilies and Christmas tree ornaments for a pair of podcasters I watch on YouTube. I’m also making Daleks and a Lost Souls Skull Shawl for my long time friend. For my mother, out of the former sweater yarn, I’m making a C2C blanket, and on the distant horizon, I’ll be making a Neapolitan C2C Blanket for who knows who.


The Hobbes Dolls are also screaming for attention and completion.


I think I’m beginning to see why I’m so enamored with knitting lately. Eeek! Mind you, it keeps the chaos at bay, so I’m not complaining.


As you can probably see from the sidebar, I am taking up Spinning Yarn in addition to Knitting, Crocheting, Weaving, Sewing, etc. I have a Drop Spindle and some fiber with the full intention to use it at some point this year. I just need to get the basics in my head. I have books and a treasure trove of videos bookmarked on YouTube.


I’m also focused on learning German specifically. Though I do admit I will occasionally foray into other languages from time to time. Things are going okay, I suppose. I’ve taken up a challenge to read a book in the language I’m learning (German) along with others. This will be the first complex book I’ll have read in German. I just need to get the money together to get an English copy. It was suggested that we have both a copy in the language we’re learning and a copy in our native language. I got the German but not the English. *headdesk*


I am also growing Yellow Pitaya (Dragonfruit cactus).


20210222_115836 pitaya


Also just recently purchased a Swedish Ivy plant. Hopefully, it will live and be free of pests so I may have it in my plant arsenal once again.


Also got new glasses due to my eyes going 3-D visual special effects a few months ago and making me nauseous.


I haven’t been writing much but I hope to change that.


And of course, there are all the many Zoom classes, meets, and webinars.


I’m running out of things to say, so I’ll end it here.


Take care, be well, and have a fantastic day.


Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow&Red rose

The Best Laid Plans…

Well, I’m doing it again. I’m making the attempt at novel writing.


This is my formal announcement that I am participating in this year’s NaNoWriMo event. I will be attempting to write a full novel for the first time as none of my previous attempts have been completed, even if they did reach the 50,000 mark. I don’t know what in the hell I’m going to write about but I am giving myself the leeway to plan ahead while still allowing for that spark of panic inspiration by making myself a “plantser”.


I am hoping, like everything, to complete this novel after 1 November and on or before 30 November. I hope it is good enough to be published and sold for a lot of money or at least a significant amount of money which will make me comfortable. I hope that, in the journey of my writing, I never become cynical like the people who have put me down in the past. I hope to learn and grow from my writing, digging deep into my psychological makeup to bring forth a story worthy of publishing. I promise not to be discouraged even when people ridicule me and my ideas as has happened in the past.


I haven’t been up to much else during this Coronaviral Crisis. Just knitting some socks, making doilies, attending Zoom classes/meetings put out by the Library and others, anticipating the eventual release to DVD of the new Dune movie, listening to Rammstein, practicing my languages (mainly German).


Oh yeah, I reached my 888th day today on Duolingo for my most recent streak.


Owing to my shoulder, I still haven’t been sewing on the machine. Though I am considering taking up hand sewing to get some practice in.


Well, I’d better wrap this up. I’ve got to go get dinner started and take my medications.


See you around.

Good Grief…Why?!

I seriously need to update this entire ecosystem. This blog, my Instagram, everything.


Between stuffing my brain full of the knowledge-y goodness of books and internet learning, crafting, and taking my myriad pills on time, Most of my online presence has taken a back seat to my thirst for knowledge and zest for skills acquisition. As well as my desire for a sane and quiet life.


Recently, I have even been getting the urge to restart my ill-fated YouTube channel. I have no clue what I’d put on this channel of mine but my face would be prominent in the field of vision of the camera. When I deleted the original content, I didn’t do it out of fear or shame but rather boredom. I was bored with my previous videos. I frequently mumbled and used barely intelligible rapid fire speech. Most of the content was about my Aerogarden’s growth updates, which was fascinating to me but no one else.


The few times I didn’t do that, I briefly mentioned the first sweater I was knitting (The blue Flax sweater I call Mir Ist Kalt) or some such. Even then, it was Mumble-o-polis.


In truth, I don’t know what I’d do for content. Most of what I appear to do now is craft during this COVID-19 Crisis. So, I guess I could talk about what I’ve been working on. I could also talk about my plan to decimate my stash through crafting. I’ve been accumulating yarn for almost as long as I’ve been knitting. Since 2006 and the pace of my knitting is outstripped by the pace of my accumulation of yarn and thread. So, I can afford to do some projects and challenge myself if only to get this yarn converted and get stuff into my wardrobe.


Not only will this decimate the yarn stash but it will also force me to increase my skills in knitting, crocheting, weaving, and spinning, as I learn new techniques and patterns. I’ll also learn something about video editing and sound editing since I’ll be the one editing the videos.


I guess I could also get into what I’ve been learning since the camera doesn’t get bored with me. I could talk about my self-directed studies and things I’ve been reading?


I’ll definitely have to up my game in the crafting, learning, and reading subjects. Anyway, it is worth a thought.

New Socks For A New Decade

I am making socks for myself for a change.

*dramatic fanfare*

I said that 2020 was going to be a new year. I have other projects but they’re on hold owing to my need of socks. These socks are going to be newly sprouted leaf green and the yarn I’m using is Knit Picks Stroll Tonal in the colorway Springtime. The pattern I’m using is Kate Atherley’s Sock Family pattern from Misti International’s collection of patterns.


I have a tradition of giving my socks names and these are no different. These are being called ‘Half Life of Radium-226 – The Socks’ and given their bright coloring, the name certainly fits.


I’m hoping to have these socks finished before July, given my rate of knitting. However, I am determined to really go all in on this pair. I’m knitting them two at a time via magic loop and I’ve got about 3/4 of an inch done thus far. I am knitting top down and hoping not to play yarn chicken as they don’t make this colorway anymore. I am knitting these on a size 2 US (2.75mm) needle. YMMV regarding needle size.


Onto other matters, our Library System is still shut down for public use due to Covid-19 but they’ve really expanded the Digital services. They’ve increased the loan period for some items, added additional slots for items checked out, and more. I still miss being able to go into the physical library though.


Speaking of Library materials, I am still working my way though the books I checked out. Thanks to one, I now know what an Angry Bird is years later. More specifically, I am increasing my knowledge of coding and programming with each lesson. I’m trying not to overwhelm myself or breeze through it and miss important information, so I’m taking it at a snail’s pace. I do love the lessons though.


The Maternal Parental’s French is coming along great. Considering she hasn’t been to school in over sixty years, she’s doing remarkably well. I’m really proud of her and happy that she’s happy.


My languages, on the other hand, are stagnating. Prior to Covid-19, I could ride the Metro system and get some practice in by *shock gasp awe* talking with people to both hear words and watch mouth movements. Can’t do that now in the era of Physical distancing and masks. I’ll find a way to adapt.

Um, Hi

It occurred to me that I haven’t updated this blog in some time. Since 23 March in point of fact.


So, hi.


How’s things?


Most of my free time has been spent sleeping and writing short journals in my offline journal to keep track of the days. Weeks. Months. Time is relative.


I did manage to finish Jeff’s hat but I am currently stuck on making the Hobbes dolls for my other friend’s nieces. I have a long term injury in my shoulder which makes it difficult to do crafting but I’m going to keep at it until it is completed because the alternative is sleeping all day. I’ve done that. I’m sick of doing that.


After seeing a video produced by Evelyn From The Internets on Procrastination, I’ve decided to re-immerse myself into my writing obsession. You really can’t edit nothing.


It’s not like I’m doing much else right now aside from coughing, wheezing and sneezing from asthma and allergies. Looking at my condition now makes me glad that I self-isolated when I did. The pollen levels have been so high in my area that, combined with the grass mowing, I’m not able to get out there without a reaction. The homemade mask helps but I’ll be happy when the filtered one comes in the delivery.


The coding/programming has been touched on in fits and starts but I plan on digging deeper into it tonight and every night hereafter. Since the libraries are still closed, I still have the books, so I need to make the most use of them that I can. GrassHopper has been putting out projects now and then, which has kept it in my mind, thankfully.


No more Sweater Weather, I think. It’s supposed to be the low 70s today. I think I’ll wash and mothball my sweater, gloves, etc. for the Summer months now.


I just hope it doesn’t rapidly go into the other direction. Temperatures in the seventies are fine but a sudden rise to the nineties would be too much to bear. I feel really badly for the Southwestern states right now. They’re getting the high temperatures now before May’s even over.


My cayenne pepper is doing okay. It is under a lot of stress due to it producing a lot of fruit. I will be going in and taking some of them off today to make a soup or something. Maybe all of them. It depends on how spicy I want the soup to be.


Last but not least, the Maternal Parental is finally joining the 21st century and taking up a language via Duolingo. She’s studying French and is doing very well indeed. I’m very proud of her.  


That’s enough rambling. I’ve got things on my agenda which need doing. Later! Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Projectmania Chronicles 2020

Project #1 – Jeff’s Hat


Okay, we’re doing this. One project at a time, starting with this one. This is a hat for my friend Jeff. I’ve been attempting to knit on it since 14 November 2019 and it was promised years before. It is nice to finally see the light at the end of the tunnel on this project. I had a lot of illnesses and injuries between the time I promised this hat and the present day.



The pattern is Beanie No 212 printed by the Bernhard Ulmann Co in a pamphlet called Bear Brand, Bucilla Vol. 318: Practical, Warm Hand Knits for Service Men.

Well, Crap

I’m down to one pepper plant. Specifically the Cayenne. The Mini-Jalapeno got hit by some kind of disease. Once I realized what it was, I got it out of there lightning quick so as to save my only means of trade. The Cayenne is growing like mad too. It used to be the runt but it outstripped the mini-jalapeno a few weeks ago by a mile.


The food situation is slightly more promising. My order with one service, Peapod/Giant Delivers, managed to go through for the few items they had. Let’s see what gets through the gauntlet of their remaining supplies…


AmazonPantry is restocking as of the last time I checked. AmazonFresh has some food but few delivery windows. I managed to catch one of those ephemeral creatures for all of about ten seconds the other morning before it was flitted from my clutches by another shopper who was quicker on the draw. I am planning on spending most of my day on that site like a hawk because I live in a food desert. The nearest supermarket with fresh produce is over two miles from me and I don’t have a car. Nor do I have the health to take an extended trip looking for food.


Regardless of who brings what and how much of what, I am eternally grateful to the whole delivery infrastructure for making it possible for me to get food in the first place. I know I tend to be snarky with my writing but I really am thankful for what I get.


Though, at times like this, I really wish I had that garden/greenhouse space.


In the meantime, I am taking stock of all my languishing WIPs/To Do projects and making a plan of action to finish them off or reclaim the yarn. A very good friend of mine actually put this idea in my head. They’re on complete lockdown due to their health and have been looking for things to fill their time while this crisis is prominent. I think, judging from my counting the bags from a distance and on my desk, that I have nine projects to work on.


It is kind of interesting because it is officially Spring but it is still in the high 30s at night. Rather than turn the heating on, I’m wearing my sweater more often, like right now, to keep warm. It saves energy and keeps my bill low. With everyone home, the energy saving part is of particular importance. I’m just glad I made this sweater and made one for The Maternal Parental. I don’t know what the Summer will be like but we’re ready for the dips in temperature.

Keeping Busy

It’s so weird. I was explaining this to a friend the other day that I had this eerie sense of calm about me lately. Between the bipolar disorder, anxiety, traumatic stress, and the agoraphobia, I’m so used to feeling on edge, that this is somewhat normal for me. The range of emotions that is. It isn’t every day one goes through a pandemic level threat.


Aside from the comically ill-timed seasonal allergies from hell, we’re doing okay. As we’re both vulnerable to lung illnesses persons, we’re avoiding people like everything.


About the only worry on my horizon is food insecurity. I really don’t think what we have is going to last two people the maximum amount of time we’re meant to be isolated. We’re rationing what we have but still…hopefully people will stop hoarding all the food/supplies and give people a chance to get something more sustainable. If worse comes to worse, I can lessen what I eat in a day for the Maternal Parental’s sake.


In other news, I present to you a picture of a Jalapeno Pepper plant I grew in 2015. While not the first pepper plant I grew, it was certainly the most successful. Until now. While I have yet to grow viable fruit on the two pepper plants I’m growing in the Aerogarden, I think it counts for something that there are, in fact, two different kinds of peppers growing. One is a Mini Jalapeno and the other is a Red Fire Cayenne Chili.


The thing I love about the peppers is the fact that I already have a trade arranged for some of them. If they grow like the first pepper plant grew, then I’m in for a lot of pepper fruit. I live in hope.


1 october 2015 jalapeno peppers


In the realm of programming languages and the land of coding…I finally completed the puzzles on GrassHopper. It was like pulling teeth in some parts of it but fun at the same time. To make sure I retain everything, I’m studying books from the library about programming languages. Given that the Library is closed until the end of the month and I have the rights to these books for the next two months, I should be well versed in the terminology by the Summer. It’s not like I’m doing anything else stuck in this house as I am…

Coding Fever

So…apparently, I’ve gotten bitten by the coding bug.


I’ve been spending hours each day learning new aspects of this new interest. It has been to the point where I don’t craft anymore. My yarn, needles, hooks, sewing machine, loom, and thread have all taken a back seat to learning the intricacies of JavaScript and Python.


I even got an offer for a free spinning wheel but I’m so enthralled with learning coding, I’m seriously considering turning it down.


What is happening to me?!


I mean, I LOVE crafting. I used to do it for hours at a time. However, since the injuries, I haven’t been able to produce much in the way of projects. I suppose this has left a gap in my day where JavaScript and Python were able to slither their way into my brain. At least, that’s what I’m going with.


I’m hoping that I’ll come back around to being able to craft for hours again. I like making things and enjoy the process of creating. For the present though, my creative flow has to go with Ternary Operators and such.


I am just so thankful that this information is mostly freely available.


A return of sorts. I originally got on Twitter a long time ago (Pre-Recession). For reasons that don’t need exploring at this juncture, I quit the site a few years ago. Yet, now that I’m learning coding, I’m finding that, despite its flaws, it is an invaluable resource in connecting with like minded individuals. This time around, I am very selective about who I let into my inner circle. Before, I followed thousands. Now, I’ll be ambitious if I follow three hundred plus accounts.


My Aerogarden is currently host to two pepper plants. One is a Red Fire Cayenne and the other is a Mini-Jalapeno. I know its too early to make prognostications about the abilities of these plants but they’re really small. The last time I grew peppers, I used a smallish cultivar that just fit in the Aerogarden. The leaves and growth were voluminous and by this time in the growth history of those peppers, I had to trim them. These peppers are already branching and they’re less than six inches a piece. I’ve even got the beginnings of flowers on both.


I’m really hoping that they’ll get bigger as I’m hoping for a large crop of each. The time before the last time I grew peppers, I grew Jalapenos (not mini) and they were very productive. I had bowls full of those.


I’m going to attempt to keep these alive for a good long while because, as mentioned previously, I am on a No Buy Year. It isn’t going as well as I’d like but it is still better than my worst year. A number of emergencies have come up where I had no choice but to buy certain items.


My phone carrier is defunct and everyone who was with them is being switched to a new carrier. So, I had to buy a new phone and the accessories that go with that because my old phone was not compatible with the new network. The positive in this is that, whenever they switch me, my phone bill will go down a bit. Another positive is my phone is no longer a hazard to me. My ancient Samsung Galaxy S5 was no longer up to today’s world. The battery drained like a bucket with a large hole in it, the processor was super slow for today’s functioning internet/telephone use and the apps were no longer compatible. My new phone was less than half the price of my old one when bought new and is superior in every way.


My old shoes have holes in them and I need to get a new pair. I didn’t realize they were so bad off until I left a few bloodstains from my foot on the carpet. What fun. Not.


Emergency buy number three was my coat. I’ve gained quite a bit of weight due to not being able to be active recently. My old coat didn’t fit me at all anymore. I’m agoraphobic, so I don’t go out much to be able to keep track of such things. When I did finally have an unmissable appointment, I found that an emergency purchase was required. Thankfully, it was a relatively cheap buy. I paid less than $100USD for it. I’m hoping we don’t get another Polar Vortex situation. I wouldn’t like to test the cold hardiness of this coat. I mean, I have a sweater but, with my injuries, I can’t get it on without doing further damage.


Oh yeah, forgot to mention, I’m now in the Diamond League on Duolingo. According to a friend, I’m ‘crazy’ for being there but I love it. I really have to stay on my toes to stay in this league. The competition is fierce. I’m currently waiting for midnight to roll around so I can do my lessons. I am trying to climb back up the mountain of lessons I’ve completed, fixing broken ones along the way, while acquiring new words and phrases. Doing the language tree from beginning to newest helps me retain the words. Now, if only I could find someone to practice with.


I met a really nice woman on HelloTalk but she’s got a busy schedule and can’t be correcting my German every five seconds.


That’s about it for now. Thank you for reading. Have a fantastic time. Take care. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Weight Dilemma

I was all prepared to post the following to Fitbit but thought better of it:


This is proving difficult so I’m seeking advice. A while back, I was on my way to being physically fit. I exercised five days a week and ate meals with the proper nutrition. I was even doing well in the C25K program.


Then, I got multiple injuries. Two rotator cuff injuries, plantar fasciitis in both feet, de Quervain’s Tenosynovitis, encroaching arthritis, and my knees started acting up. It seems like, no matter which way I turn, I am hurting. I want to get back to working out but the pain is so great, I am having trouble finding the motivation.


I do rehabilitative exercises for my shoulders, hand, and feet but I’m in too much pain to do much else. I don’t want to go against doctor’s advice but I’m just getting heavier sitting here.


What would you do? Would you exercise regardless or just gain the weight and heal before trying again?


Even though it is against my doctor’s advice, I’m going to go back to working out. I don’t like where I am at the present and would prefer to be more active even though it is tremendously painful. I’ll do my best to avoid agitating my shoulders, thumb and knees but I’m afraid my feet are going to suffer.


My new goal weight is 120lbs. Technically, that is overweight for my height and build but I’d rather be 120 than 96. That low a weight just doesn’t seem like it is achievable to me or healthy regardless of what the BMI says.


I’m going to spend today figuring out my new meal plan. Then, first thing tomorrow, I’m going to heed my alarm’s call and exercise. Wish me luck.

This Me Time Thing

It has been eight days since the beginning of the year and twelve days since the idea of not buying anything entered into my mind as a primary challenge for the year. Thus far, I am in keeping with the no-buy challenge. I haven’t gotten anything unnecessary to the functioning of this household. That’s a win.


However, my secondary challenge for this year is to take more Me Time in order to piece myself back together from the mental shredding I’ve been going through over the past several years. This is proving more difficult. I appear to be incapable of putting aside time for myself in a way that is necessary to aid in my healing. I appear to be struggling to fulfill my own needs as far as relaxation is concerned.


I honestly don’t know how I got like this. I’m taking steps to combat it though. If I hadn’t intervened and made myself take a break, I don’t know where I might have ended up.


Speaking of restful things. I’m going to go do some reading. I’m currently reading a book I haven’t picked up in twenty-odd years. The Sword of Shannara by Terry Brooks. My plan is to slowly read the first eight books in the Shannara ‘verse as that’s what I have. After that, I might knit some.


One mistake that I’m still making is that I am primarily knitting for others rather than myself. I promised myself I wouldn’t do that, without pay, as much anymore for the foreseeable future but, here I am, with a cardigan cast on for The Maternal Parental while I still have yet to knit myself a new hat when I’m long overdue for one and I only just completed weaving in the ends on the gloves I ‘finished’ for myself in November 2018. I need to put a stop to this nonsense. Don’t get me wrong, it is a lovely cardigan pattern.


I’m still not able to figure out why I’m in such a dire need to do for others when I haven’t and won’t do for myself. That’s something else I really must get to the bottom of. In the meantime, I think I’ll be a prime example of Start-itis and cast on for my hat if only to reclaim my time. In case you’re wondering, The Brioche Galaxy Hat is the pattern I’m determined to make for myself. I do find myself wondering if other craft loving people do the same self-sacrificing things?


Thanks for reading. Have a fantastic day.

Burned Out

Now that I’m two days into the New Year, I have had some time for reflection of everything I’ve been through this past year and everything I hope to accomplish in the new year and beyond. In truth, I’m burned out. I’ve been running on empty for some time now and I have been enjoying the past two days of fewer stressful activities. I’ve been reading, I’m writing right now. I even cooked dinner the other night as opposed to getting takeout due to exhaustion.


I managed to get some knitting done on Jeff’s long overdue hat. I’m not stressing though. It will get done, along with his gloves and all the other items I promised people, when I finish it, as opposed to my staying up all hours while getting very little done due to exhaustion.


In this new year, I promised myself that I would take better care of my health both physically and mentally. I’m planning on setting aside a lot more Me Time as opposed to doing things for others. I’m finally in a place where I can see that this isn’t a selfish self-centered gesture. If I don’t take care of myself, how can I possibly expect to be there for anyone else? My burnout had gotten to the point where I would sit, for hours, and just stare at the mounting pile of projects I felt I had to get done or else but none would get done. That’s just not a healthy way to approach life. I mean, I wouldn’t eat properly, exercise, or even drink water regularly due to the pressing need I had to please others.


That is over. I made promises and intend to keep them but I’m not stressing myself out like I used to. I’m giving myself six months to complete what is, honestly, a six-month workload.


New Year, New Me.