I’ve Finally Found It…

My second language has finally been discovered. True, it took trepanning and a good deal of mental excavation to find it.

 

That language is…German. In truth, I should have known better. I did try to teach myself this language when I was ten. I have been practicing daily, about three hours per day, for thirty-seven days now. If you’d like, you can follow my progress on Duolingo. I’m now at the point where I can just barely make out what people are saying or what is written down. I definitely need to practice more if I’m going to be fluent but it is a good start.

 

I just need to find some Germans. Yoo hoo. Germans? Are you out there?

 

For that task, I’ve done the unbelievable. I’ve opened a new OKCupid account. This time around, my task isn’t really dating. It is finding a language pal/study buddy, so hopefully, I won’t have any trouble with anyone at all. Wishful thinking, I know. It is the seat of comedy but I’ve gotten rather a lot of matches to Dutch people. I don’t mind. It is a bit mentally rich carrying three languages around in my head at once in the name of politeness but you do what you do.

 

The friends I’ve made have gotten a hilarious chuckle out of this one. I’ve been learning a lot of German from the lyrics of Rammstein. Someone…might listen to them for more time in the day than they study on Duolingo. Angel 

 

Those same friends suggested I expand my musical tastes, so they gave me a small listing of artists that they liked. I then combined their favorites with the Get Germanized listing of popular German music artists (YouTube Link) for later exploration. Some [who I won’t name] I really didn’t like, but others sound very good.

 

One group I’m going to be giving my ears next is Die Ärzte. They came up on multiple lists as highly recommended. Anyone out there have any other recommendations? Please, leave them in the comments. Smile

 

Aside from the above, it has been a summer of Plantar Fasciitis in both feet, crochet, strange propositions, lather, rinse, Repeat.

 

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

But Wait… There’s More

So, I’m already determined to do the Craft Yarn Council correspondence courses. However, the more I read into it (and believe me, I have been reading into it!), the more beneficial it appears to be for me to join The Crochet Guild of America and The Knitting Guild Association because…Networking opportunities and Discounts on all the courses.

 

They also have Master level courses in their respective craft’s proficiency. I would do well to take these courses too. While I get a lot of crafting in, and could certainly practice on my own, having a structured learning environment and someone to ask questions of would be very helpful for my academic growth and professional development. These courses offer both, as well as the Networking opportunities that someone just starting out would definitely need.

 

There’s also the social aspect. I’d finally have a group of people to hang around who share similar interests in Fiber Arts. That is to say outside of the realm of the Internet. I am determined to get this done, one step at a time, and successfully complete these goals. Then, and only then, I will take the Craft Yarn Council’s correspondence courses.

 

Again, this comes back to the big question: Cashy money. Barring supplies for the tests (assuming they don’t provide supplies), I’m just going to have to cut corners somewhere (mirthless chuckle) in order to provide the application fees for these courses.

 

My best bet is to start putting myself out there for neighborhood chores or something. I also have the ability to make afghans and blankets now. Those usually fetch a good price. I’ll just come up with my own take on a simple design like a Granny Square blanket or something.

 

You know, it is times like these that I wish I knew how to effectively knit fine lace? That never goes out of style. One shawl could go a long way towards paying for all of these classes.

 

I am determined to get these goals achieved. So, they will be achieved. Until the next time, have a safe and fantastic journey around the Sun. Take care, my friends. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

This Is The Beginning…

This is the first of what I hope will be many Daily Blog “Topic” posts. Today’s (and every Monday’s) topic is Gardening related. I am, by no means an expert on Gardening, Horticulture, Botany, Plant science, etc. I’ve only studied it, years ago, in High School. This was followed by a brief encounter with the Horticulture program at a local community college before my illnesses started rending me asunder. Anything I have learned since then has been on my own, in my own time, and at my own risk.

 

Recently, as of 9 January 2017, I have installed a new seedpod kit in my Aerogarden. This is a unique seedpod kit in that I am growing my own seeds for a change using a Grow Your Own Seed Pod Kit. They are three pods filled with four Sweet Pickle Organic Peppers seeds each. I got the seeds from Park Seeds on 10 March 2016 and they’re still viable. I am on a learning curve all over again with the Aerogarden and with these new plant’s idiosyncrasies. Regardless, I am happy to be growing these peppers. I’m really looking forward to the coming harvest.

 

2017-01-23 17.04.54

 

When last I grew peppers, they were Jalapeños and I only grew one plant in the previous Aerogarden via the Salsa Garden kit. I grew it passably well but mistakes were made. At the time, I didn’t know about the docking one is supposed to do when the plants, or in this case plant, gets to a certain height. My pruning skills also weren’t up to my present standards. On top of that, an insect flew in an laid eggs on my precious baby. After that, I had to get rid of it. The infestation was too far along by the time I saw it for what it was.

 

Currently, I’m checking out a few resources to aid me in growing these peppers well. One resource is the Cornell Vegetable Growing Guide specifying Peppers. Another is a gardening forum and website with a plethora of resources called Gardenstew. Between these two sites, all the information a search engine can provide and my driven abilities, I am hopeful in attaining the goal of successfully maintaining these peppers for at least a year, if not longer.

 

I came across three interesting videos on the subject of growing peppers. One is a video on Potted Peppers (Video Link) by BadAssFarmer. Another is a video on pruning peppers called EZ Pepper Pruning For Great Results and Huge Yields (Video Link) by Alberta Urban Garden Simple Organic and Sustainable. The third is a video on pruning the roots of an Aerogarden grown plant called Ep9: How to Trim the Roots of a Hot Pepper | Hot Peppers in an Aerogarden | Update (Video Link) by Pepper Perry.

 

I think that’s about all I have in me for a themed post. This is hard work but very fulfilling getting the information together. See you all tomorrow where, hopefully, I can do better with this writing format.

Blog Topic To Do List

I’ve done it. In addition to random, stream of consciousness postings, I’ll be doing a series of themed posts from now on. In order to help me organize this, I’ve made a Daily Blog Topic To Do List for me to follow as a guideline.

 

The Listing is as follows:

 

  1. Sunday – Fiberarts (Knit, Crochet, Pattern design) related
  2. Monday – Gardening related
  3. Tuesday – Writing related
  4. Wednesday – Autodidacticism related
  5. Thursday – Coding related
  6. Friday – Linguistics related
  7. Saturday – Secularism related (Expanded day)

 

Hopefully, I’ll be able to keep up with both this learning and this writing schedule. The topics are pretty self-explanatory. I’m just going to expand upon each one on the day of the week for each topic. Though Saturdays are, admittedly, a bit of a wildcard. I don’t want to give away too much before I’ve posted.

 

First post will be tomorrow, I suppose. See you then.

Getting Out More

I should preface this with two points.

 

One, I am Agoraphobic. It is not something I choose to do. It is something that hits me like a ton of bricks, usually when I least expect or want it to interfere in my life. I’ve gotten used to it limiting my social life but I’ve been fighting it every step of the way and I’m slowly making progress in the endeavor to defeat this condition.

 

Two, since my father’s death and funeral last year, I’ve been isolating in a major way. Which is interesting because he was much the same in that he isolated from social contact, despite being a reverend.

 

So, yesterday was very good, in that I managed to make it to the meeting of the organization I previously wrote about in the last entry. It was unlike anything I had ever been to before. Everyone was so kind, so warm. It was great to be surrounded by people who weren’t in religious sledgehammer conversion attack mode.

 

I’ve got to say it. I’m really looking forward to attending more talks at this place. It was most invigorating.

 

Also, I was recommended another group of Secular people by a member of this first group. So, I will be getting out quite a bit over the next year. At least, I hope so.

 

Onto other things, I’m having second thoughts about the possibility of volunteering for NAMI. I don’t think it would be a good fit for me after all. Does anyone know of a secular to neutral Mental Health support group looking for volunteers?

 

So, that leaves the Library and, hopefully, a yarn shop. I’ve also found a few more opportunities on VolunteerMatch but they’re a good distance away from where I live. I don’t want to offer myself for something and then be unreliable about getting there. Only a few “in person” positions are open to someone with my skillset. I’m already in one “virtual” volunteer position and I’m teetering on the fence about another.

 

So, Hidden Figures is now in Theaters. I am going to find a way to see this movie. It isn’t often that I actually want to go to the theater to see a movie. There were few to no role models of a contemporary nature for kids like me when I was going to school. If knowledge of the NASA Computer Program had been general knowledge and taught about in schools, I guarantee you, it would have made a difference in a lot of lives.

 

It would have showed the disbelieving people who mocked those with dreams that people can achieve their goals. It would have given people with goals and dreams something to aspire to outside of the usual channels. My hope is that this movie has a positive impact on people and changes their minds regarding preconceptions they may have.

 

I have to go now. My Aerogarden supplies came and the Mega Cherry Tomatoes are starting to flower again. They have to go. Now. I’m going to install the Sweet Pickle Organic Peppers today.

Later. Have a fantastic day.

New Year, New-ish Things

A modified list of projects. I’ve removed the projects marked completed and deleted. Now, my mission is to finish these off. At the end of last year, I busted out a quick Valentine Teddy Bear with Heart Shaped feet, called Bertie the Bear, for my neighbor, on the occasion of her birthday. I’m not going to include it in this listing as it was finished prior to the New Year.

 

Mommy Sox Junior (Loading…)
Plastic Fantastic socks for myself
AHA Little Hats, Big Hearts Project
Blodeuwedd The Hat for me
Little Boy Blue Blanket (Loading…)
Cosmos Doily Madness: Doily Three (Loading…95%)
Child-bearer’s Cardigan (Loading…messed up but still loading at 90%)
Boba Fett Amigurumi Doll
Yoda Amigurumi Doll
Rose Doily #804
In Love With Color Throw (Loading…90%)
Bigger on the Inside Shawl
Gloves for myself
A scarf for myself
Villimarjatar Shawl (Loading…)
Large Pineapple Doily
Monster Slippers for Valerie
Socks for The Maternal Parental x4
Socks for Myself x4
A Shawl of my own design
Wings for Nightbird Shawl
Dragon egg
Hobbes doll for April
Inishturk Sweater x2
Long Weekend Cardigan
Simple Shells Cowl
Fan Lace Tunic
Revontuli -huivi/Northern Lights Shawl
Scrap Yarn Shiver Stopper 2017

After six months of growing and four months of harvesting, I am taking down the Mega Cherry Tomatoes. Aside from the fact that I’m allergic to tomato plants and have been sneezing up a storm since they’ve grown, I’m just ready for a change. So, I have ordered the needed parts, that being the filters and plant spacers. Everything else, the Grow Your Own kit, the Liquid Nutrient, the seeds, etc. are all here already. All I need do is clean the Aerogarden out on the ninth, when I get the remaining supplies, and set the new garden up.

 

This next garden, I’m planning on leaving in for quite a while. Actually, I may leave it in for upwards of a few years, if the plants last that long. Things in the Pepper family are supposed to last a while and Sweet Pickle Organic Pepper looks like a good plant to have growing for a long period of time.

 

In addition to all the things I’ve been focused on doing, I’m also adding the title of “tutor” to the mix. The Maternal Parental, apparently, wants to learn about computers (again), so I’m going to teach her everything I know about Computer Know-How, Getting on the Internet, etc. She was supposed to take classes at the Library but, owing to a previous day’s extended exposure to the extremely cold temperatures, she was unable to find the strength to get to the class the following morning.

 

Hopefully, I can come up with a lesson plan that is good for her. One that will enable her to learn and take charge of her own learning.

 

As if my plate weren’t full enough, I’m also going to begin attending meetings at a local organization that matches my philosophical beliefs, or at least seems to. We’ll see how much we actually gel once I get there. If we all do get along, it’ll be nice having good, secular voices to talk with for a change. Being agoraphobic and cooped up with someone who is, shall we say, religiously obsessed, is a bit on the tedious side.

 

My problem isn’t with the religious aspect. I’m fine discussing religion as I am fine discussing non-religious subjects. However, when one begins using it as a sledgehammer to try to convert people one feels aren’t living up to the ideals according to ones own beliefs, then we have a problem. I’ve stated myself as plainly as I could regarding not joining a religion, not having a specific belief structure, etc. but it is still attempted, in spite of my kindness or perhaps because of it. I don’t want to be rude or derisive but it is irksome to keep getting that.

 

In trying to understand, I’m guessing that, perhaps, people have an idealized vision of what I should be like, based on stereotypes and assumptions, and balk when I don’t fit the mold of what they think someone like myself should act like. Well, limiting expectations have never been my cup of tea.

 

Another “as if my plate weren’t full enough” thing is actually mentioned in the listing of knit and crochet projects in a sort of roundabout way. I’m getting back into volunteering. In this era of fear and greed, I need to do something brave and selfless with my time to counterbalance the aforementioned. I’m looking for “out of the house” positions but I am not opposed to doing an “work from home” position if it does good works and keeps me busy.

 

Right now, I’m making baby hats for the American Heart Association’s Little Hats, Big Hearts drive. Basically, you make a lot of little red hats for babies, send them in before the deadline, Lather, Rinse, Repeat. I am fully prepared for the making of hats in 2017. I have a skein of Lion Brand’s Pound of Love yarn in Cherry Red and a few patterns with plans to get more of both. I actually love making little hats. Squeeeeeeee!

 

Other volunteer positions I’m looking at but still on the fence about are NAMI, the Library, and a few local yarn shops (if they’ll take me!), etc.

 

Speaking of the Library, I’m upping the ante on my Korean Language learning saga. Up until now, I’ve been learning words and a few phrases. I just put a bunch of language Audiobooks on hold at the Library so I could not only study the language more but also so I could learn sentence structure. My next step, after this, is going to H-Mart to get a newspaper to study.

 

Well, I think that’s enough writing for one day. I have a lot to do and not much time in the day to do it.

 

Have a fantastic New Year. Later!