Prune, Write, Knit, Grow

Over the past few days, I’ve been continuing the clean up effort I started regarding my blogs and journals. After more than sixteen years, I’ve finally deleted my Livejournal and Deadjournal accounts. I’ve also deleted all my old posts from my surviving InsaneJournal as they’re not really reflective of where I’d like to go in life. So, I am starting from scratch as far as the InsaneJournal is concerned. I have also added a Dreamwidth account to the mix.

 

I’ve also managed to write in my hand written journal for a change. That was quite the experience after so long without writing in it. Hand writing practice. It is a thing. To give you some idea of how long the stretch between entries is, the last journal entry was from August of 2016. I fully intend to keep up with my writing this time around. I want to keep a few journals. One for writing, one for self improvement, at least one for languages, and one for personal stuff. That’s not counting the online journals and blogs.

 

I have a cousin in gestation. My cousin with whom I share a birthday is expecting a baby on or around our mutual birthday. So, I am going into crafting overdrive in making her a plethora of items. My intentions are to make at least two (maybe more) baby Flax sweaters, the Lacy Chevrons Baby Blanket, a toy of some kind, and, perhaps, a second crocheted blanket. In addition to this, if I have the time, I’ll finish the never collected Soft Purple Baby Blanket I was making in 2014.

 

In the realm of growing, my tomatoes are growing and maturing in the Aerogarden. Plant two may need to be cut back as it is getting leggy but Plant One is growing quite well. It even has a number of maturing fruit growing on it right now. My other plants, the Snake plants, Spider plants, and Pineapple are all doing excellently as well. I’m not sure when or if the Pineapple will grow a Pineapple fruit but it is now nearly three feet in diameter.

 

The one thing I would love this year that didn’t occur last year would be for me to get the garden plot I signed up for. I really want to grow different fruits and vegetables not only for my own household but for family members, friends, and people in need of fresh produce. At present, I have to take public transportation to the nearest market about twenty minutes from my home as the bus rides. The nearest community garden is slightly closer and much less travel time. My plan is to get a wagon and hike it home once the produce starts growing. Either that or save a lot of carfare for cabs, which in truth might be safer given that the roads near where I live and near the garden site don’t have sidewalks.

 

Though, at this point, all of this is mere speculation on a fantasy. I have no garden excepting my potted plants and Aerogarden.

 

I need to wake up so I can get back to knitting. I’ve been quite ill over this past few weeks with various colds/flus etc. I am now, thankfully, recovering.

 

Now, to get into this knitting. Until the next time, have a safe and fantastic journey around the Sun. Take care, my friends. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

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Random Rambling for October 2017

Waiting for someone to return a DVD to the Library is such a test of patience. It was due back on the twenty-first and hasn’t been returned yet. I’m hoping that whomever is holding Intro to Lace Knitting it is alright and in good health.

 

  • 45+ knitted cast-ons & bind-offs with Ann Budd (Held)
  • Knitting daily workshop : one knit design, many versions : a guide to knitwear pattern and garment making (Held)
  • Aran lace knitting (Held)
  • Knitting daily workshop : getting started, basics and beyond, with Eunny Jang (Held)
  • Yarn to fit : keys to successful knitting. (Shipped)
  • Continental knitting (Shipped)
  • Join as you go knitting (Shipped)
  • Knitting workshop (Shipped)
  • More than two : a practical guide to ethical polyamory by Veaux, Franklin (Shipped)
  • Intro to lace knitting Active (since 10/19/2017) (Hold in Waiting)

Not much else is happening in my life.

 

I have read almost fifty books this year. I’m presently at book number forty-eight.

 

Tomorrow, I’m making a telephone call to start the process of re-entering college after untold years of being out. To be honest, I am not looking forward to this but my life cannot move forward without facing this. In order to get the jobs that will pay for the medications which keep me functional AND in the lifestyle I’d like to maintain, I need to go to college or trade school. Living the way I am now just isn’t sustainable in the long term. Doing studies, while fun, takes a toll after a while, especially regarding traveling. 

 

The second call I make will be to get my eyes checked by an eye doctor for the first time since I turned eighteen. I’m now thirty-six. My primary care physician was insistent that I do this. My vision has been blurry for going on two months now only I didn’t notice it until I started knitting the sweater. I was spending so much time being uncharacteristically happy and outside prior to then. It didn’t dawn on me that everything was getting hazy. Thankfully, as best as I can tell, there are no blind spots in my vision, so it could just be a matter of my age catching up to me and me needing glasses.

 

In the meantime, I work as best I can. I’m taking a short break from working on the Flax sweater to work on a Hobbes doll. The Pharmacy delivery guy will be coming within the next two to three days and I want to have his replacement gift doll ready for him before tomorrow is over. Seeing the stitches is a bit of an issue but, thankfully, I have been able to use a combination of feeling for them and seeing the light coming through the holes in the crochet work.

 

Mind you, look at the progress I’ve made on the Flax sweater. I still think that I’m going too slow for what I know my abilities to be but considering the distractions I’ve had over the past few weeks, I think that this is pretty good progress. Not bad for an English thrower, eh?

 

20171020_214407

 

Speaking of my knitting style… that’s about to change. As soon as the library gets that video on Continental Knitting in, I’m switching on all projects except this sweater for tension reasons. I want to knit faster and more efficiently. I’m also sick of getting this callus on the tip of my index finger on my left hand whenever I knit. Hopefully, learning to knit in the Continental style will eliminate the appearance of said callus. Once my tension matches, if I haven’t finished the sweater by then, I’ll switch hands.

 

My plants are all growing well and my plan is to give one of my Pineapple babies away. I’m just hoping that it isn’t too cold outside when I’m due to give it away this coming November.

 

Oh yeah, I’m back to posting videos on YouTube with a new and improved introduction and a video about…my Flax sweater…up so far. I don’t really know where I’m going with this. Everyone is pushing me to do a podcast but I’m lacking in ideas and stamina to keep it going by myself. Now, if I had a partner or a regular interview segment or something, maybe it would work. I’m not sure but I’d be willing to give it a try. I’d be the first to admit that I’m not the most charismatic person on the planet but I can learn and am willing to try.

 

If I do start a show, I’d be spoiled for choice on subjects. I have so many things I’m interested in or involved in. From Gardening to Fiber Arts to Linguistics and beyond, I’d never run out of topics, that’s for sure.

 

Well, I can’t blog all day. I’d better get cracking on this Hobbes doll.

 

Until the next time, have a safe and fantastic journey around the Sun. Take care, my friends. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

I Heart Flax and Tin Can Knits

I just wanted to post about the Flax Sweater pattern and the Let’s Knit a Sweater tutorial by Tin Can Knits. This is the first wool sweater I’ve gotten so far on in knitting. I’m currently on the cusp of separating the sleeves and body stitches.

This is a fun knit. This is not a difficult knit. This is also a versatile knit. In short, I love it very much. I’m already making plans for knitting other sweaters for my mother, boyfriend (I know…), and others as well as more for myself. I am completely enamored with this pattern and plan on making it my “go to” pattern for sweater gifts.

 

Well, since I’m sick and have nothing else occupying my day, I might as well get back to knitting.

 

Until the next time, have a safe and fantastic journey around the Sun. Take care, my friends.Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Summer WIP Frogging

Apparently, I’m driven to eliminate languishing WIPs and destash my hoard of yarn. Why, I don’t know but it appears to be happening and I’m being quite cut throat, where before I was quite sentimental about my Works In Progress.

 

My listing:

 

Blodeuwedd The Hat for me
Little Boy Blue Blanket (Loading…45%)
Cosmos Doily Madness: Doily Three (Loading…95%)
Child-bearer’s Cardigan (Frogged)
Boba Fett Amigurumi Doll
Rose Doily #804
Bigger on the Inside Shawl
Gloves for myself
Villimarjatar Shawl (Frogged)
Large Pineapple Doily (Loading…50%)
Monster Slippers for Valerie
Volunteer Scarves
Volunteer Baby Hats (Loading…5%)
Cardigan of the Progenitor (Loading…16%)
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Hobbes – Yay! (Loading…53%)

 

If you’re wondering why I’m making five Hobbes dolls, it is due to the fact of a promissory backlog. I promised four people Hobbes dolls as gifts and figured there was no time like the present when, on hearing that the Pharmacy Delivery Driver’s birthday was upcoming, the Maternal Parental begged me to make him a Hobbes doll in appreciation. She actually pleaded with me to put aside the work I was doing on her cardigan and get working on the Hobbes doll as soon as possible.

 

So, knowing that I had this backlog growing, I figured I’d eliminate them all at once. I’m currently 53% completed with this task. At this point, I can do this pattern in my sleep, which is good because I have been falling asleep at the desk while working.

 

Onto Villimarjatar. I initially tried to make this shawl in a sock yarn. Until I saw an episode of Fruity Knitting where Romi Hill was interviewed, I was fully prepared to knit eight hundred yards into my shawl using said yarn despite being unhappy with the look of my progress. Let’s hope that the new yarn I’ll be using works more effectively.

 

The reclaimed sock yarn will be going into two projects. One cake will go into the Syncopation socks. The other cake will join my first attempt at Doublefun socks. I’ve been looking forward to making the Doublefun pattern for some time now. Some of the remainder may go into my take on the Find Your Fade shawl. We’ll see.

 

Into the destashing, one of my relatives has decided to rekindle her knitting skills and was fully prepared to go up to Joann’s to buy supplies with which to do so. I just couldn’t allow that seeing as I’ve got all this yarn and all these needles that hardly get use. So, I made her up a box that will, hopefully, make her happy.

 

What made me happy was, on seeing the depth and breadth of the box, the Maternal Parental decided that she wanted a batch of yarn as well. I really hope she means it this time. If they both keep at it, I’ll give them the more expensive yarns once I’ve fully divested of the less costly product. More people need to be knitting, crocheting, and weaving. That’s my philosophy.

 

My other philosophy is that, shock and awe, I’m moving away from acrylic. The more I work with wool and other natural fibers, the more I want to. Also, there is the environment to consider. Wool and natural fibers are…natural and biodegradable. As much as I like being the Empress of Economy, acrylic costs the environment in the long run even if it saves me money in the short term. So, in future, if I do buy acrylic yarn, it’ll most likely be a colorful wig project someone commissioned me for. Which is to say…not very likely.

 

About the only other thing on my RADAR is a story idea creeping on the periphery of my conscious thoughts. I dream it just fine but when I wake, the dream is gone from my mind like someone erased it. I’m determined to bang something out on this keyboard over the next few days. So, one way or another, something is getting into my OO.o Writer.

 

Until the next time, have a safe and fantastic journey around the Sun. Take care, my friends. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

My Monopolized Time

Right in time for the holiday, I am sick. So, I am at home recuperating and trying desperately not to throw up.

 

When I’m not doing the above, I’ve been taking an inventory of what I’ve gotten accomplished thus far regarding my project list.

 

  • João’s Hello Kitty Hat (Completed)
  • Blodeuwedd The Hat for me
  • Little Boy Blue Blanket (Loading…)
  • Shimmer Stole (Deleted)
  • Sidewalk Shawl (Completed)
  • Handschuhe Times Two: Bruce’s Gloves (Completed)
  • Cosmos Doily Madness: Doily Three (Loading…95%)
  • Rainstorm II Socks (Completed)
  • Child-bearer’s Cardigan (Loading…messed up but still loading at 90%)
  • Boba Fett Amigurumi Doll
  • Baby Groot (Completed)
  • 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 (Loading…)
  • Large Pineapple Doily
  • Monster Slippers for Valerie

 

I am also on a few sites that claim to teach how to code…learning how to code. Right now, it has me going through the basics of HTML and CSS, which I already know, but I am determined to get into Programming languages soon. I’m determined to make this a side career for myself or even a main career. I just need to focus on my goals and not veer off-course.

 

No doubt this all seems very stressful. I’m having fun doing it but it is rather a lot to take on. As if this weren’t enough, I’m also taking up Korean, because I’ve wanted to for a very long time. I’m memorizing things semi-well even if I don’t spell the words as well as I should in review. I’ll get there though. Basically, my non-studying time is filled with a lot of studying. I’ll need to find another source for the language tutoring, as the one I’m using is holding back on the hard words. I’ll have to see if the Library has a language CD or something. I can also go to the local grocery store and pick up a newspaper for writing practice.

 

So, lots to do and only twenty-four hours in the day to do it all. Add onto this, the pattern writing/knitting design learning, plant management, taking care of the Maternal Parental, and taking care of myself as well as the household, and I have very little time left in the day. This has put a real dent in my social networking. I will try to log in once a week and, as always I will be available via messenger service.

 

Take care. Later.

Blodeuwedd The Hat…

…and various other things.

 

Since NaNoWriMo is now coming to a middle, I thought I’d get in high gear in finally planning my own Winter accoutrements. Long has the project page for Blodeuwedd The Hat sat in my Ravelry projects, uncompleted. Up until now, I’ve been making due with the hat pictured below that I crocheted years ago.

 

Crocheted Mexicana Hat v2_00006_001

Now, I’m not saying that this current hat hasn’t served me well. It has. I am just looking for something warmer and more air tight/heat trapping.

 

So, using the Beanie 212 pattern, I’m going to go completely off the rails with the color design, to the best of my abilities. This new hat is going to be made of washable wool. It’s going to be at least three different colors. I am going to get more in if I can via scrap yarn. Topping this off, the scarf and gloves I’m making to accompany the hat will match it, again, to the best of my abilities.

 

I can see it in my mind. I just need to figure out how to design it properly.

 

In other stuff, I am teaching myself to write knitting patterns. It’s the next step in this journey I embarked on a little over ten years ago. I figured it was time to take it to the next level and get my feet wet with learning how to properly write patterns. I have two books on the subject, both of which are very informative. The two books are:

The Beginner’s Guide to Writing Knitting Patterns by Kate Atherley

Teach Yourself Visually Knitting Design by Sharon Turner

 

I know that this is, by no means, the entirety of knowledgeable literature when it comes to pattern writing and knitting/crochet design. This is just the beginning of my long-term exploration of the subjects. There’s a lot for me to learn but I’m up to the challenge.

 

Also on the topic of new books and on the subject of personal challenges is my acquisition of a cookbook. I have Maangchi’s Real Korean Cooking and I fully intend to use it. This is the first cookbook I’ve purchased. I’m hopeful I can get some food to make all these wonderful dishes.

 

Onward to present projects. Villimarjatar. I brushed against it the other day on my way to the keyboard to do some NaNoWriMo updating but, other than that, I haven’t touched it. I’m presently on the third row of the second pattern repeat. I’m hoping to get quite a bit done tonight since I’m finally ahead in other things. I live in hope.

 

As to NaNoWriMo, it doesn’t look like I’m going to get to the end of my story this year either even though I will exceed the 50,000 threshold. Still way too many characters and too deep a plot. Still, I like the story enough that I’m going to keep working on it beyond NaNoWriMo. I hope anyway. It’s a good bet my friend will be on me to write it because he wants to see it come to fruition too.

 

I’ve got to go now. My Aerogarden is whining for water. The tomatoes drink the level down almost daily now that they’re bigger and fruiting again. Later.

Live and Learn

I made two boo boos with this cardigan.

 

2016-10-12 20.20.18

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.

 

2016-10-14 15.03.23

 

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.