Live and Learn

I made two boo boos with this cardigan.


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Brace yourselves.


I didn’t check my gauge. I have two Knit Checks and I didn’t bother because I usually always make gauge. As far as I can tell, I did this time as well but, when making garments, especially when so much effort is invested, it’s a good idea to take the time to make sure everything matches up.


The second thing I think must have happened was the omission of some pattern repeats in the pattern itself. This cardigan is tiny. It would barely fit on a six year old child. I’m thinking of dressing it up as a “play coat” and giving it to the neighbor’s granddaughter. Prior to this epic fail in fashion, I’d never made a cardigan before. However, I have made shawls. Something about the rhythm of the pattern screams out for a multi-row pattern repeat or two.


My suspicions about this are even further validated by the sheer length of the other cardigans made by fellow members on Ravelry. One couldn’t possibly block something out to those dimensions without there being more than was written on the paper.


So, lessons learned. I am, instead, focusing on making myself (what I hope will be) a quick shawl before NaNoWriMo begins. I need a crocheting accomplishment prior to writing. It’s going to be one of my NaNo traditions. Since the cardigan didn’t do it for me and I am sick to tears of sweaters right now, I am focused on making the Sidewalk Shawl. Yet, I’m also wacky and complex. So, I’m making the shawl in Knit Pick’s Diadem Solid fingering weight yarn. Weeks from now, the avalanche of “I told you so” messages will be unwieldy.


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I’m going to get back to crocheting now. Getting this shawl done will free my mind up to be creative in writing. At least, that’s the hope.


Thank you for reading. Have a fantastic day.

Random Sunday Updates

Hello Everyone. It has been some time since I last posted here. I have been, admittedly, a bit busy, of late. Instead of focusing on Facebook and goofing off online, I’ve been focusing on myself and developing my potential for future application in the meatspace. I’ll just run through a few of the highlights here, shall I?


OK Cupid


I have finally gone through on the longstanding promise of deleting my OK Cupid account. The site just stopped being fun. When it first started, there were all kinds of bells and whistles to make you want to stay on the site for hours. Now, it’s more and more like the other sites. On top of that, the avalanche of crude messages I received should have been enough to make me leave a lot sooner than a few weeks ago. Had it not been for the deluge of bad messages, I might have connected with a truly wonderful person I exchanged e-mails with in 2010 a lot sooner than recently. It’s a long story, possibly for another time and another post. Suffice it to say, I haven’t been this blissfully happy in quite some time.


The Departure of the Protégé


My Knitting and Crocheting Protégé is moving out of state in a few weeks. Not like I got a chance to do more than get him fitted out in hooks and a few needle sets. I had plans for so much more but now, if we both have the time, it’ll have to be long distance and via Skype or something.


This leaves a vacancy for a Protégé in my life. I’m going to attempt to recruit the Maternal Parental for the role. She’s been showing an interest in the hook set I bought her years ago. Perhaps we could spend quality time together crocheting and knitting? Who knows? It would be a nice thing to have happen.


The Fitness


Up through to the present day, I’ve been focused on improving my health through diet and exercise. I’ve finally managed to make headway on this front. I’ve lost thirty-two pounds and several inches thus far. I’m now in smaller clothing, which is nice. I even managed to fit a dress I bought in 2011 that I was barely able to fit then. It’s loose on me now. My routine is pretty brutal during the week and much more forgiving during the weekends (to give my body a chance to rest). I’m hoping that I can maintain this level of activity for a while before ramping things up again for the next phase of fitness. A highlight was when I got in over 100,000 steps this past week.


The Container Gardens


The plants keep growing. After all, they’re living entities. Specifically the Mega Cherry Tomato in the Aerogarden. Since I last posted, some of the tomatoes have ripened and some have been harvested. They’re very tasty too.


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In addition to the tomatoes growing amazingly well, I have an inflorescence in my house. One of my Snake plants has decided to put up a flower spike.

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The Comestibles


Aside from the above pictured tomatoes, I had something of a treat a few weeks ago. A dear relative gifted half a bushel of the most delectable Maryland Peaches to the Maternal Parental and I. Below is an example Peach.


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So, of course, I had to make Peach Pie. It was practically a requirement that I do this in the name of Science, Asgard, and Loki. It may not have won the Great British Baking Show with its looks but it sure was tasty. *grin*


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The Culling


In recent weeks, I’ve finally done the Mega Culling I’ve threatened to do for a while now. My books, my precious books. Some of them are up for grabs now. Some have already been re-homed. I hope they give many years of enjoyment to their new Humans.


A before and after of my bookcase:


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More books may be culled. The decision hasn’t been finalized yet.



The Old School Gaming


Ten years ago, I bought a six in one gaming set from Amazon, it includes a set of dominoes, a deck of cards, a Chess/Checkers board with pieces for both games, a Cribbage set, and a Backgammon set.


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I had bought this with the intention of spending quality time with people but, sadly, no one wanted to play. It’s all video games now. So, I’m going to teach myself to play these games, find video games for them, and play by myself. Then, when that glistening, shining moment arises where someone asks the $64,000.00 question of “Do you know how to play…” I’ll be able to say, “Yep”.


The Crafting


Finally, I can update the world, nay, Multiverse on the progress of these damned socks. The Rainstorm II Socks are Finished. Complete. Finito. My proof.


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It only took me from 19 February 2015 until 25 September 2016 to get them completed. As I stated previously on Instagram, this is not acceptable. The next pair of socks I start get finished within a month or I don’t get to keep them. Instead, they’ll go to the nearest Mens 9.5/Womens 11/43cm shoe size wearing person I can find. My knitting is fast enough to have finished these socks within a week of starting them, if not sooner. That’s with ample breaks to rest my finger from the brass needlepoint of my circular needles (Magic Loop knitting). Just because I was able to put it down repeatedly didn’t mean that I should have.


Anyway, onto the socks themselves. They’re very toasty warm and deliciously soft on my feet. The yarn was a dream to knit with and I’m really looking forward to making more socks in the other colorways of this yarn, which is Stroll Hand Painted from Knit Picks. The pattern is called Misti Sock Family and the pattern designer’s name is Kate Atherley.


Once I completed the socks, I decided to work on a crochet project for someone very dear to me. It’s something I’m presently working on actually. Once completed, it’ll be the second Amigurumi Adipose Baby I’ll have made but the first I’ve made in wool. Let me just say that, but for my cheap nature, if I could afford to work in wool all the time, I would. This project has been nothing short of luxurious on my hands. The wool was actually his request, so I thank him for requesting it. This pattern is called the Amigurumi Adipose and the pattern designer is Jennifer Christensen.


This is as far as I’ve gotten:


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All I have left to do is crocheting, stuffing, and attaching the feet before weaving in the ends. I hope to get this done in an hour or two.


NaNoWriMo 2016


I will be participating in National Novel Writing Month 2016. I have no idea what I’m going to write as of today. I suppose this makes me a “Pantser” until I come up with an idea? I still haven’t finished the novel from last year. Some day…


This year, I’m going to be a lot more basic with my characters, background, and storyline. I want to finish something tangible by the deadline. What I have from last year is okay, it’s just a lot of writing with more writing to come. I need something that’s going to be less War and Peace and more quick and easy read. It is October now. I really need to get myself in gear.


Okay, I think that’s it. My stomach is rumbling and I have a workout to get in, so have a fantastic day.

Resplendent Day



I have tomatoes coming in. Yes. Oh yes. At least fourteen cherry tomatoes are going to develop on this stocky little plant from the flowers I’ve been vigorously shaking on a daily basis. The reason I know this to be true is due to the fact that one flower came off because of my overenthusiastic shaking program and, when I pulled the blossom out to check the development of the tomato, it was on its way to becoming a new fruit.


So, I am going more cautiously now but I am still shaking daily until I get confirmation of fruiting in the form of blossom drop off. This is happening on the forty-five day old plant. The second, twenty-nine day younger plant is just starting to branch out. I should be docking it within the next two weeks or so once it gets bigger.


I am so excited to be growing tomatoes again. I loved doing it the last time notwithstanding the difficulty in getting them to fruit compared with peppers. When I grew the Jalapeno peppers, the flowers practically pollinated themselves whenever I walked past the Aerogarden. The tomatoes, on the other hand, require a good shake and/or usage of the pollinator to get good results in fruit maturity rates. I don’t mind, considering I love doing this. It is just something I’ve noticed.


Rainstorm II Socks


These socks are, at long last, nearing completion. I’ve knitted late into the night on them several nights this past week and I’ve finally made progress on them with only eighteen more rounds to do before I start closing for the toes. In future, I am not going to delay when making socks for myself. I am going to work on them right away, as often as possible and as long as possible until they are completed. Hopefully, this will keep me from having such a longstanding WIP.


There is more but I’m putting it in my hand written journal. Thanks for reading. Have a great day.

Autumnal Clearing

Currently my room looks like a Hurricane dropped chaos upon it. I am in the process of minimizing my possessions even further. I have cleared parts of my closet of boxes that haven’t been cleared in almost ten years. It is so empty in there now. There’s an echo in parts of my room that is spooky.


While clearing the shelf in my closet, I managed to find this little nugget of sunshine in a dust covered box, hidden under a plethora of old pen pal letters from decades gone by. I got it in 1995, brand new, for the 20th anniversary. I’m sitting on the fence about selling it. I saw one on a site in Mint condition going for $166USD and the non-mint averaging out to $35 for much worse wear and tear than my copy has.


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All this stuff is going to be gone soon enough. With the exception of a few items, the rest is going out into the recycling/garbage.


The oppressive heat has not been kind to myself or my plants. I’m still struggling to breathe and have been put on stronger medications for the Asthma. Even more sad, most of my plants died in the heat event we just went through. Ten plants in total are now pining for the Fjords. I has a true sad. Some of those plants, I had from the early part of the 21st century.


The survivors are:


Sansevieria (Snake Plant) (Oldest of my plants, 1997)

Ananas comosus (The Pineapples)

Solanum lycopersicum (Mega Cherry Tomato Plants in the Aerogarden)

Chlorophytum comosum (Spider Plant)


Perhaps this loss is for the best.


For too long, my focus has been on so many things. Knitting and Crocheting, my plants, Autodidactic pursuits, volunteering, trying to maintain my health as well as other pursuits. I’ve had so many irons in the fire, perhaps my focus isn’t where it should have been all this time? Perhaps I would do well to remember the lesson of the oxygen mask?


Thanks for reading. Have a great day.

Fostering Positivity

The few of you who know me personally are well aware that I am often brooding to the point that Eeyore would have something to say to me in response to my mood. Comparisons have been made to some cartoon from the 90s called ‘Daria’ as well as a host of other comments.


Thanks to the intervention of QueerJoe’s blogpost, I’ve decided to do something about it. I am going to dedicate myself to fostering positivity in the world. Wherever I can and whenever I can, I am going to do good works for the sake of doing good. It’s my hope that this Positivity web/chain/whatever that started with QueerJoe expands outward and encompasses as many people as are willing to participate. I hope that there are a lot of people willing to join in on the fun.


First, I am going to dive into all these unfinished projects that have been accumulating dust on my desk recently. Not only is this not good for my asthma, it’s not good for my creativity, nor my allergies, nor my sanity. So, those are out of the way ASAP.


Next, I will do a vlog. This will be the first formal “sit down” vlog I’ve done in months. So many things have happened in my life between then and now. Hopefully, this video will be cathartic and just the right balance of entertaining with educational.


Positive news about the Maternal Parental: Her eyes are in magnificent condition right now. The surgery site healed well and her glaucoma is under control with the aid of medications. She’ll be fitted for glasses within a few weeks.


Tonight will be a night of reveling in movies. I’ve got Demolition Man, Dragonslayer and The Hollow Crown: The Wars of the Roses. Last night was Priest and Legion. Hopefully, I can overcome my shyness to actually talk about some of these movies and shows I look at in greater detail.


About the only other things happening right now are three burgeoning friendships and the rise of the Mega Cherry Tomatoes in the Aerogarden of Serendipity. The Sweet Pickle Organic Peppers died due to my overzealous application of Neem.


That’s all. Thanks for reading and have a fantastic day, Everyone!

Updates In No Particular Order

The Maternal Parental has finally had her second and final cataract surgery. We’re seven days into administering the eye drops and today’s the first day we take one away, specifically, the antibiotic. Her vision is already really good. She’s able to read and see things with an accuracy not had in decades. Hopefully, her vision will continue to improve with time. After this, she’ll be fitted for eyeglasses. I’m incredibly happy for her.


The Paternal Parental has been buried for almost a month now. The burial was 2 June. Father’s day was exceptionally hard this year. It normally was but this year really dug in with the barbed mace. I suppose it will get better with time but that time has yet to pass, so it’s all still new for me.


My plants are all doing well. I just docked the peppers a few days ago and gave the basil another haircut last night. With the docking of the peppers they’ve begun to branch out almost immediately. I expect them to start flowering within a few weeks. With the basil (and associated Aerogarden of Serendipity plants), their days are numbered. I will be buying the new seed kit (Mega Cherry Tomatoes) in a few days. I may try to root the Genovese basil and grow it in a pot, as it’s very good, as is the Mint, but the rest I am definitely getting rid of.


As for me? I’m doing alright. I may need to write in the hand written journal a few times to unload some seriously bottled up stuff but, other than that, I’m doing well.


Thank you for reading. Have a fantastic day.

Peppers and Socks and Herbs…

Oh My!

An abundance of Sweet Pickle Organic Pepper seedlings. I relented and put them under the light hood of the Aerogarden of Serendipity as I’d been threatening to do for weeks now. I’ve noticed vast improvement in the short time they’ve been under the lights. This is the third day and they’re already a nice, dark green color and all straightening up.

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I’m going to give them a few more inches to grow before I mercilessly cut the very tips from them. Bwhahahahaha. No seriously, it’s a good way to get an abundant harvest of peppers out of a plant. It causes the plant to take on a compact, bushy habit and produce more flowers. More flowers (if they’re pollinated) equals more fruit. At least, I hope it gives me fruit.


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My progress on the socks. I’m about one quarter of the way through knitting the feet. Over the past month, I haven’t been able to touch this project owing to so much stress and grief but, lately, I’ve been doing pretty well at it. When I finish this, I’ll make another attempt at the Boba Fett amigurumi figurine before (hopefully) moving back to the Maternal Parental’s crocheted cardigan.

The Project list at present:

  • João’s Hello Kitty Hat (Completed)
  • Blodeuwedd The Hat for me
  • Little Boy Blue Blanket
  • Shimmer Stole
  • Handschuhe Times Two: Bruce’s Gloves
  • Cosmos Doily Madness: Doily Three
  • Rainstorm II Socks (Loading…)
  • Child-bearer’s Cardigan
  • Boba Fett Amigurumi Doll (Loading…Daylight hours)
  • Baby Groot
  • Rose Doily #804
  • Be a Friend/Have a Heart Shawl(Completed)
  • In Love With Color Throw
  • Bigger on the Inside Shawl
  • Gloves for myself
  • A scarf for myself
  • Villimarjatar Shawl
  • Large Pineapple Doily
  • Monster Slippers for Valerie


One more picture and then I’m going to go read my book. Right now, I’m reading Darwin’s Origin of Species. Anyway, this is a pre-cutting picture of the Aerogarden of Serendipity taken 30 May 2016.


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As you can see, this is a forest of basil. I’ve cut it back but it is only a matter of time before it grows back to wacky proportions.



I think, in future, I’m going to grow just about anything but the Gourmet Herb garden. I love growing Peppers and Tomatoes, so perhaps I should try those out a bit more?


Thanks for reading. Have a fantastic day.