Found My Old Autobiography

Several years ago, I wrote out a brief outline of my life. It’s around twenty pages and growing. I did it mainly as a form of catharsis due to all the negative stuff I’ve had happen in my life. It worked too, so I’d highly recommend this as a supplement to therapy. In its current form, it goes from ages 0 – 27 years or, roughly, the years 1981 – 2008. I have plans to expand upon it up to the present day (I’m now 34) over the next few days as a means of getting my creative juices flowing for NaNoWriMo.

 

In other less boring news, I’ve harvested all the rest of the Jalapeno peppers.

I was watching YouTube’s Praxxus55712 and he explained how taking the first flush of peppers off would yield another two or three harvests down the road. So, up the stairs I went and cut the little fiends off of the plant. Already, there are new flowers coming in and signs of more growth. I’m really hoping that the tomatoes catch up with the pepper plant soon. From the looks of things, I might have to raise the hood light again.

 

Now, I just have to figure out what to do with all the jalapeno peppers I have. If you, my dear readers, have any suggestions, please leave them in the comments? I was thinking Nachos or homemade salsa or something. So far, I’ve been putting them in my eggs but that gets old quickly. Plus, everyone around me is a lightweight. So, giving them away isn’t an option.

 

Onto Project Central. Nothing is happening there. I’ve been so busy chasing down the Maternal Parental for some quality time that I haven’t been doing much with my projects. We’ve been trying to look at the last Hobbit movie but she gets sleepy, then I do, then she wants cigarettes. Lather. Rinse. Repeat. I should just focus on my own stuff for now given I’ve signed up for something so big as NaNoWriMo but I like spending quality time with her.

 

The Caregiver’s Cardigan is only a few more rows completed. Somehow, I don’t think I’ll make the deadline for NaKniSweMo for this thing. Still, as long as I get it done before the Holidays, I’ll be happy.

 

The Mystery Stuffed Toy hasn’t been touched since I mentioned it in the vlog days ago. If I focus on any project, it’ll probably be that one. I can bust it out in a day or so of crocheting compared with days and days of knitting for the Caregiver’s Cardigan.

 

Doily and various other projects…*hangs head in shame*

 

I’ll get to them all eventually. I should probably focus on them once NaNoWriMo is over with so I can have winter accoutrement. I’ve still not finished my winter gear.

 

The next vlog should come this weekend, if I can squeeze in the time and manage the quiet. I’m up in the air about what to read though. It’ll either be something I’ve written (fanfiction or original story) or another Fastback Horror series book.

 

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to take a moment of “me time” and read the rest of Julius Caesar’s Commentaries on the Gallic War before binging on Paul Bettany and Karl Urban movies.

 

Later!

What On Earth Was I Thinking?

So yeah, I signed up to do NaNoWriMo this year.

 

I haven’t a clue how to hammer together a novel. I barely have a clue how to write coherently or with proper punctuation. A fifty-thousand word goal seems out of my reach but I won’t know if I can do it unless I try. That’s all I can give is my best effort. The hilarious thing is that I have ideas popping out of my head all over the place but will any of them measure up to the word quota?

 

Whatever I ultimately decide to do, I am backing it up both on disk and in the cloud. I’ve had several data loss scares both personal and social reminding me to do so.

 

I’m also doing NaKniSweMo and at least with that, I am on somewhat familiar territory even if the scale is a bit overwhelming. I know how to knit. I know how to do the stitches required according to the pattern. Even if I’m working in hideous pink, I’m at least able to make out what I’m supposed to be doing, albeit slowly, and make progress.

 

Oh yeah, I did a new video (YouTube Link). Shockingly, it doesn’t feature video of the Aerogarden of Hope. In this episode, I’m reading a Richard Laymon story called Night Games. What I should be reading are my old college textbooks on writing comprehension. Instead, I’m reading Julius Caesar’s Commentaries on the Gallic Wars.

 

I’m going to admit to being nervous about this NaNoWriMo thing but I’m going to face it. I’ve been running from actually writing something meaningful for a long time. It’s time I stopped running away from this and achieve a writing milestone for myself.

 

The Aerogarden of Hope is doing well. For anyone who follows me on Instagram, you’ve seen the pictures of the jalapeno pepper plant. It’s loaded with peppers right now. So much so, that the remaining flowers are dropping off because the plant can sustain no more fruit. There must be at least thirty growing peppers right now at various stages of development.

 

It will be ten weeks of this garden growing in four day’s time. From there, it’ll be two more weeks before the oldest of these peppers are ready to be harvested. At least, that’s what the updated literature says.

 

The tomatoes…are growing a bit slower. They have flowers and all but they’re very short and not getting nearly enough light. I’m really hoping that they’ll catch up to the pepper soon.

 

Aside from this stuff happening, the most amazing thing ever occurred last night. The Maternal Parental and I watched several Epic Rap Battles of History videos and…she enjoyed them. We’re talking genuine joy and not merely a feigned interest.

 

Shocking, I know.

 

I was so happy she wasn’t depressingly clawing the door for cigarettes, that I wrote a thank you to the ERB twitter. If I get the energy in me, I might make them something in gratitude for making the Maternal Parental have a happy moment for the first time in a long time.

 

Okay, I’ve put it off for long enough. Tonight’s agenda is writing and trying to flesh out the story I’m going to do for NaNoWriMo. I can put it off no longer. It’ll be September in a few hours and that’ll mark two months before this whole thing is supposed to begin. Wish my nervous ass some excellent writing skills so I can accomplish this goal.

 

*firing up the Alice in Chains and Red Hot Chili Peppers music for inspiration and relaxation*

Vlog Number Two and Writer’s Block Too

Later start time = Less sleepy and no blinding flash to avoid. Yay!

Almost completely unscripted this time, I managed to get through another eleven minutes of vlogging with few problems this time.

 

I got a much later start than last time, so I wasn’t fighting off yawns. I didn’t have the Flash of Doom in my eyes, so I didn’t squint or avoid the camera altogether. For only my second video, I consider this a resounding success.

 

About the only problem I have right now is a sudden case of Writer’s Block right when I need my writing abilities the most. As of this moment, there are no writing ideas in my head. This isn’t leading to a wave of consternation as I had expected either. I’m pretty much at peace with it. You see, I know that it’s only a temporary block. I went eight years without writing, so a few days is not going to send me packing.

 

Yes, I can see the irony in my writing this blog post. No, it’s not the same as “Writing”. With creative writing, I have to really delve into my mind to pull the thoughts out, make them coherent and then format it for Human consumption. These blog posts, on the other hand, are rather stream of consciousness and don’t require much in the realm of thinking. It’s just my internal dialog put on display.

 

So, I’m going to do two things: I’m going to pick a story to read for the next vlog and I’m going to crochet until I feel the writer’s block smashing in my mind. For the story, I’m considering going with Franz Kafka. I’m not sure which of his stories I’m going to read yet but I have The Castle and the Penal Colony. I received both as gifts from my ninth grade Mathematics teacher, Mister Pardi, who is a genius who chooses to teach us lesser mortals. He’s probably one of the coolest teachers I’ve ever had actually. I don’t say that lightly.

 

After I do this, I am going to crochet some on the October Rust Birthday Shawl. It is, after all, getting to be late in the month. I want to have this thing completed by May.

 

Before I do any of this, I need breakfast and tea.

 

Later, Peoples of the Sun! Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

My First Formal Vlog. Yay!

First vlog. Yay!

 

I finally did it. I finally put a vlog up on YouTube that features me for an extended period of time. *cringe*

 

I am so exhausted right now. I need a new computer or a faster processor on the one I have. I’ve uploaded larger files from my phone at a quicker rate. Still, it’s done. Now that I’ve completed this task, I can go do some writing and then some crocheting.

 

Later! Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

How I Lost My Fear of Crafting, Part Two

Note: There was no prompt for me to post this today. I just felt like it. Call it me getting ahead of the assignments, if you will. Hopefully, I’ll be able to do all the daily prompts in addition to the Writing 101 prompts with no problems. Anyway, back to the story.

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One day, around the time of my twenty-fifth birthday, I decided I must learn to knit. By then, we had moved into a stable neighborhood and I was mentally stable even if still ragged around the psychological edges. I had come a long way from near complete mental breakdown up to this point and I was determined to treat myself with a self obtained accomplishment. Knitting was to be this accomplishment even if I had to bleed for it.

 

So, taking my meager savings, I bought a pounder skein of black yarn from Amazon along with the cheapest straight needles I could find. I ended up with a pound of Caron’s One Pound Yarn and a pair of 10” size 8 Susan Bates knitting needles. I was overjoyed to finally have the implements of knitting but I didn’t know the first thing about how to knit. I searched high and low on the internet but to no avail. This was 2006 after all. There was nothing there excepting a few sites and a few videos online.

 

Not having luck with searching online, I decided to go to the library website to see if they had any materials related to knitting. Wow, am I ever glad I did. They not only had materials relating to knitting but they also had an upcoming class at the Catonsville Library being taught by a famous knitting woman. I had no clue who she was but the words “Free Knitting Class” had me rushing to register. Lucky for me, there was still room in the class for a few more people. I was given the requirements for the class as well as the date and time to show up at the Library.

 

I showed up at the appointed time in the neighborhood I was barely familiar with. I was about twenty minutes early, so I spent my time fiddling with my needles and yarn while waiting for class to begin. Once I got the all clear to go to the classroom, off I went to my first lesson with sweaty palms and a leaping frog in my stomach.

 

The class was comprised of all women of varying ages and backgrounds all there for a single purpose: To Knit. One of the Library staff was there to introduce the Famous Knitting Woman whose name I cannot recall beyond “Knight” as her surname. In addition to Famous Knitting Woman, there were three teaching assistants who did most of the teaching.

 

Once everyone had been introduced, class was started. There was a knot in a skein of yarn being use for demonstration purposes and I was given an opportunity to show my party trick of getting near impossible knots out of bits of string. Famous Knitting Woman had gone to retrieve the scissors and before she could make it across the room, I had already gotten the knot out. She could hardly believe her eyes. I just shrugged and said that it was my talent before getting self conscious.

 

The class went well and, after the last two students (a mother and young daughter) showed up, we all settled into casting on the initial stitches. I was so nervous about dropping my needles that I held on for dear life and casted on stitches so tightly, they could scarcely be pierced. After a few tries, I managed to cast on reasonably loose stitches via the Long Tail Cast On and began attempting to knit. Famous Knitting Woman saw how I was knitting with the stitches far from the point and suggested I move them up to the very tip to aid in my knitting becoming speedier. However, I was so nervous, I kept dropping stitches and eventually fell into a habit of keeping them back which has stayed with me even up to today.

 

Soon, the class was coming to its end and Famous Knitting Woman made suggestions of things we should buy, books we should read and tools we should consider acquiring to aid in our progress as knitters. By then, it was dark and, after saying goodbye to everyone, I walked back to the dark bus stop in a daze that I had finally learned something of the basics of knitting. However, on getting home, I began doing something wrong and I knew it but didn’t know how to fix the error. It would be from 20 June 2006 until 6 August 2006 until I finally found a fix for my problem.

 

All during the Summer, I focused on reading knitting books and practicing by knitting on “the Object” until my hands bled. I’m not kidding, my hands got blisters and bled from the amount of practice I got in on those needles and yarn. Yet, try as I might, nothing I did seemed to fix the problem of the extra stitch. I didn’t know what I was doing but, for some reason, I went from ten stitches to eleven and onwards until I had an unwieldy project sitting on my aluminium needles. Still, I kept at it even as my hands bled and my eyes turned bloodshot from so many hours of staring at the same project. I didn’t give up.

 

One day in August, we got a call that my Maternal Grandfather was in the hospital. Apparently, my uncle from my Grandfather’s second marriage contacted the family via my aunt. We were invited to a cookout to give the family a chance to know each other. Less than one week later, my Grandfather was dead from his illness. The stress of having to deal with so much during that time drove me to escape into the world of knitting.

 

Giving up on “the Object”, I searched high and low on the Internet again until I came across the KnittingHelp website. Amy Finlay’s videos quite literally kept me sane as I learned to properly knit for the first time since June. I practiced throughout the night until the morning of the Wake. Once we were at the funeral home, I retreated further into my knitting and managed a pretty decent looking beginner’s scarf. For the first time, but not the last time, knitting kept me from blowing my top at an inappropriate moment.

 

Part Three, the final installment comes tomorrow. Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow

Keeping Up With It

It is currently three days into this writing project and I’m doing very well. I’ve managed to put something up on my blog for each day of the project. I haven’t missed a day yet and I hope not to miss a day.

 

Today’s prompt included a secondary goal. I am supposed to commit to a writing practice to free write for a minimum of fifteen minutes a day. I think I’m up to doing that. I am familiar with the format of Free Writing, as it is the means I use to write most of my stories. I am hoping to get something coherent out of what I put out. There was also a secondary prompt in that I’m supposed to find a new article to include in a blog post. Oy…

 

In case you were wondering, this is the Free Write for today.

 

I haven’t knitted or crocheted since Sunday. I’m hoping to get something done tonight on the October Rust Birthday Shawl. Picking my brains for words has proved exhausting to say the least. I am thankful that something is coming out. However, it seems to be sapping my creativity in other areas. I’m hoping that tonight will be different.

 

A joyous thing for me, I’ve gotten three series of Knitting Daily (500, 600 and 700) in the mail today with four more (800 through 1100) coming in tomorrow. Thanks to those sales, I got it all for really cheap. I only wanted the first eleven series as I don’t really have a fondness for the format of the show after series 1100. Even with my favorite designers, I couldn’t warm to series 1200 and afterward. So, I’ll be watching my DVD collection for information and inspiration as far as Fiberarts are concerned.

 

Aside from that, I’ve got a tripod and such coming. The tripod is for me so I can do vlogs and upload them to YouTube. Goodness knows why I want to do this, but, for some reason, I want to make video blogs about what it’s like having agoraphobia, bipolar disorder, PTSD, anxiety etc as well as other things in my day to day life. It’ll all be on my YouTube channel for *gulp* everyone to see.

 

Why am I doing this again? Oh yeah, I’m supposed to be stretching my boundaries to further aid my recovery. Crying face

 

Most likely, it’ll be me reading from one or more of my books to start off with. Then, I’ll field questions. Hopefully, I won’t fall flat on my face.

 

Tonight’s agenda is to do the next writing assignment and prompt, do some crocheting, watch some Knitting Daily and get ready for tomorrow.

 

Take care, Peoples of the Sun! Rolling on the floor laughingRed heartRainbow