Last and First

I think I neglected to post the last project I completed in 2015. It was a doll for a friend of mine on the occasion of his birthday. I got it finished just in time too. The pattern information page is available via Ravelry – Hobbes by Ann Stiver-Balla.

 

 

So now we come to the first completed project of 2016. I made this hat for another friend of mine. He likes Hello Kitty and, when I discovered this, I immediately wanted to make him a hat I had seen on Ravelry. So, this is my attempt at upsizing this hat for a fully grown human man. Luckily, we have the same head measurements, so it wasn’t difficult keeping track. Pattern information available via Ravelry – Hello Kitty Hat by Elizabeth Pardue.

 

 

So, as of this moment, I’m turning skeins of bright red yarn into cakes with my Yarn Ball winder for a future shawl project because it is too dark to work on my current distraction. I’m FINALLY making my friend Sam his Boba Fett doll. *fanfare*

 

You are probably wondering why I’m spending so much time crocheting and knitting when I could be…sleeping. Well may you ask. Due to recent health issues with my current medications (edema, racing heart, etc), I’ve had to stop taking the one that stops the panic inducing nightmares from happening. So. No sleep for me. At least, very little in the sleep department, most of which is fretful. Such is life, I suppose.

 

Completely changing the subject: The Aerogarden Tomatoes.

They’re really taking off, as you can see in the above picture. I offer you a few close ups of the fruiting.

 

So far, I’ve got at least ten tomatoes with a lot more flowers coming in everyday. I try to do a trim as needed, usually about once every other week or so. I’m trying to maintain the health of the plants and ensure they keep flowering and fruiting for me.

 

Well, I’ve got to get back to winding up this yarn into cakes. Take care and Be Well.

The Beginnings of the Little Boy Blue Blanket

I’ve started on the blanket. *fanfare*

I love this pattern too. I’m a little further along than the above picture but not by much. I’m trying to pick up the pace so I can get this thing done before the end of September. I think I can do it. I have enough confidence in my abilities to think myself capable of this feat.

I’m making it extra big so that it can be used well after newborn phase. Is that what they call it? Newborn phase? I know little of such things. It’s for an as yet unborn baby. Theres no telling how big or small he’ll be, so I thought it safe to make the blanket on the large side to prepare for the eventuality that he’s a giant baby.

In other news, I’m almost back down to my “low” high weight. I was having issues with edema over the past two weeks that had me pushing my high weight again. Thankfully, it’s back down. I don’t know what I did to alleviate it but I’m glad it is gone. Edema is no fun. Hopefully, the dancing breaks I take in between crochet marathons will be enough exercise to keep the weight dropping. At least for the month I’m working on this blanket. I plan on restarting my regular two hour workout routine once this blanket is done.

Aside from that, no dates for a while. I’m quite off of them at the present. I will, of course, meet good friends for platonic get togethers but nothing romantic. Instead, I’m going to spend the next few months focusing on myself. Ugh, that sounds so self obsessed. What I meant is that there’s a lot I could be working on rather than pursuing, or being pursued by, romantic interests.

Chief among these things is the agoraphobia. I’m going to start exposure therapy on myself in an effort to break the stranglehold it has on me. I’ve been reading about it and conversing with people online who’ve done it. I think it’s time I gave it a try. Nothing too extreme to start off. Just walking, unaccompanied, around the block a few times a day. From there, hopefully, I can expand on the territory I can travel in without having a massive anxiety attack.

After that, is my writing. Aside from text messages and this blog, I haven’t been writing much lately. I do not like that one bit. My goal to be an author suffers greatly by my not practicing everyday. To that end, I am going to get back to studying my English text books, writing in my composition notebooks and increasing my writing on here and via my stories. Hopefully, this will help me improve my writing abilities to the point where I can get that book done in 2015 like I want to.

Third among my short term goals is to get in contact with the worst of the worst mental health centers and get an appointment in with a therapist and psychiatrist since the shining light of heath centers doesn’t have either available for the forseeable future. I am earnestly hoping that no drama occurs with this place this time around. The last time I was under their “care”, I was driven to being a completely housebound agoraphobic from one who could at least get out. Hopefully, it won’t be recommended that I re-enter their Day Program. *shudder* The stuff of nightmares.

I’m in a good place and I don’t want to get worse through incompetence.

A brighter future through hard work and perseverance is my aim. 🙂

Goodbye 2013, Hello 2014 To Come

Another year has come and almost gone. Hard to believe that 2013 is almost ended and we’re fourteen years into the century.

Rather a lot has happened to me in this year. Most notably, I’ve taken a good uppercut to the agoraphobia by going out on my own. In this neighborhood, at least, I can make it around with enough effort. I hope to extend this traveling range in 2014.

My babies are growing well, though I need to get fertilizer for them and soon. They’re all growing tall and/or strong as they possibly can. Not bad given that they’re all growing in pots. I’m hoping to grow basil, tomatoes and sweet potatoes in my window this year. I’ve certainly got the pot for sweet potatoes. I’ll try to grow tomatoes in it as well. Hopefully, they won’t compete. I am also going to try growing tulips and daffodils. For all of this, I am going to need more soil and a few more pots.

On to other things. Due to the fact that I’m not seeing Keith again until late January, I’m knitting Todd’s stuff first. I’m currently 29 rounds into the hat and I hope to have it finished in five day’s time. I really like this pattern now and will be glad to make it for myself and for the Maternal Parental. I may even try knitting it two at a time on my 47in circular needles.

After Todd’s hat comes his gloves. For those, I’m modifying the given pattern and just knitting fingers and closing them up rather than make them convertible. It’s the only pattern I could find that could accommodate his hands while maintaining the “glove” patterning. I just hope I get the hang of two at a time gloves like I did two at a time socks since this pattern calls for that particular knitting technique. If the gloves fit me well in the trying on phase, I may even make a pair for myself because I gave my gloves to the Maternal Parental.

On to my weight. Good grief. 2014 will be my year. I’ll make sure of it. Due to illness, I gained eight pounds. Hopefully, with the aid of hydrochlorothiazide in the coming year, I won’t be ill again and will be able to keep up with my exercises without pain. My target weight goal is 30lbs lost by January 2015 but I am really hoping to lose more than 30lbs. More like 100lbs but I know that’s unhealthy and unrealistic without a trainer, cameras and a prize at the end of it. I’ll be documenting all of this on my MyFitnessPal profile and blog as well as 43things as it’s my main goal to complete.

Effective today, I’m going to go through my stories, both in my head and on my computer, and work on whatever has an idea to it. I want to write a book by 2015 and I’m hoping my stories will be my ticket to doing that. It wouldn’t be everyone’s cup of tea but it would be a goal completed for me, so I’d have a reason to be proud.

I’m also going to make it my mission to complete my knitting and crocheting projects. Enough WIP startitis. Time to finish them!

Happy 2014 to come, everyone! May your year be filled with lots of great wonderful things. 🙂

Window Shopping

I’ve been exercising for nearly three weeks now and I have noticed a slimming effect. Given that, I guess it’s time to start planning for new clothes. To that end, I’ve been combing the one site I know I can find clothes to fit me, Just My Size, in the hopes of finding a smaller version of my current pants, as well as some workout clothes. I’ve always worn my T-shirts baggy, so that’s not going to be an issue when I get smaller. However, my pants falling down in the street will be an issue. I’m nowhere near that now but I am losing inches off of my body, so preparation is key.

The JMS Pleat Front Twill Pants will be the pants I get…as soon as I get some money. I plan on getting one in each size smaller than my current of 26W to see which actually fits and in black and khaki for colors. I originally bought the current pants I own as a stop gap measure against my constantly fluctuating edema issue but not for my actual size. It’ll be nice to have a pair of pants that actually fit. Getting them in multiple sizes ensures I have pants at the ready for when I lose the excess weight I’m carting around. Hopefully, I can catch them on sale and get them for as cheap as I got my original pants.

Since I’m going to eventually take up swimming, I thought it might be a good idea to buy a swimsuit but this is by no means a final plan. I don’t want to buy a suit that fits my current body only to have to buy another one down the road when I lose weight. However, the swimsuit I’m looking at purchasing is the Chlorine Resistant Cross Back Crinkle One-Piece Tank Suit in black. Until the day comes when I buy this thing, I’ll be fine in a T-shirt and shorts.

For workout clothes, the Champion Double Dry Plus-Size Women’s Tank Top and the Champion Stretch-Cotton Fitted Plus-Size Women’s Boot-Cut Pants will serve me quite well in black also. Having these clothes will give me the opportunity to go outside for part of my workout routine unlike the present where, due to my lack of clothing, I am unable to do this barring the agoraphobia. At the present, I exercise nude to save my clothes and allow me free range of motion. These workout clothes look perfect to enable me to have my proverbial cake and eat it too.

In addition to these things, I was looking on the Payless website and found a nice pair of shoes to use specifically for exercising. That way, when they get sweaty, I don’t have to worry about getting a new pair of everyday shoes. The Men’s Champion Lattice Runner shoe even comes in my favorite colors, Green and Black. Hopefully, I can catch these on a BOGO sale at Payless either online or in store. After all, I’m not made of money and I did get get a pair of shoes, when they went on sale, a few weeks ago.

I’m getting to the point now in my fitness regimen where I should really consider making a written down plan of the exercises I’ll be doing. What I’m currently doing is getting too easy for me and, if I want to lose weight, I’ve got to stay ahead of my body’s resistance to exercise. So, starting in three days, I’m going to extend my exercise routine by a half an hour and add some new moves to my repertoire. I figure that should keep my body in enough shock for me to continue to lose weight.

Well, that’s about all I’ve got for right now. I’m going to take a 30 minute nap before I get back up to do some writing since I’m falling asleep in the chair even as I type this. Later!

I Am Bored

My boredom is making itself known through my baking nearly every food item in sight. I’ve made banana bread, chocolate chip cookies, bread pudding and rice pudding so far. Today, I’m baking more bread pudding and will probably be baking bread to replace the bread going into the bread pudding.

I believe this has to do with my twice yearly soar and crash creshendo. For those of you who aren’t in the know, I have what is called Rapid Cycling Bipolar II Disorder. Usually, it’s my mood that rockets and tanks but, thankfully, for some reason, this time, it’s making its presence known through my cooking. I can think of worse things I could be doing. I’m actually coming up on the nine year anniversary of my first, and hopefully only, hospitalization.

Mind you, this could also be due to a lesser hormonal influence. I’m currently on the Cup. It’s my nicer euphemism for menstruation. You’re welcome. Thankfully, I’m not vomiting this month and there are no cramps to speak of. Just a sudden urge to bake everything.

Whether it’s due to mental influences or hormones, I’m getting quite a lot done. Now, if I could just push this into my knitting and crocheting. I did do a bit of crocheting this morning while having a Peter Stormare-fest of movies but I only finished a row on the Return of the Scrap Yarn Shiver Stopper – Blanket 2013 that I started while watching 12 Angry Men with the Maternal Parental. Hopefully, this energy will be with me again tonight when I sit down to watch more Peter Stormare movies and I’ll be able to get some work done.

In truth, I should probably be putting this extra viewing energy into something scientific or philosophical but…he’s hot and, with the exception of Bad Boys II, I like his movies/tv shows.

The only other thing happening right now is my problem with edema. I am currently about fourteen pounds overweight in fluid and I’m not enjoying it. It’s hard to stand, which makes this baking fun. Not. It’s a bit hard to breathe and I feel and look like Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. That’s about it, so Yay.

Weight Management

*sigh*

My new doctor gave me a clean bill of health barring one thing. My weight.

My cholesterol is 140/57 and my triglycerides are 53. My blood pressure is 113/80 (high for my normal of 90/60). My weight is down a bit from my last weighty tweet. I’m now 246lbs but that’s neither here nor there because it’s not enough of a weight loss to be considered healthy.

As soon as the Lunapads challenge is over, I’m kicking it into high gear. I’m going to ease into exercising at least once a day and eliminate a lot of stuff from my diet. Lucky for me, I don’t eat much in the way of junk food to begin with but I could still do with a diet modification to eliminate, or at the very least, cut down on salty foods. Given my family history on my father’s side, it’s not too likely but I don’t want to tempt fate and get a blood pressure problem. Plus, eliminating some of the salty foods from my diet may go a long way towards cutting down on any fluid issues I might have.

I can’t wait to get some fish in this house. I love Tilapia.

My only problem is getting outside due to the Agoraphobia. *sigh*

One Month of Fitness

One Month of No Meat

It began on the 1st of April but, for some reason, I didn’t chronicle it. I’m actually hoping for this to lead even further into veg*nism once the month is up. Given my resources at present, it’s a serious possibility. I’ve got a patch that, if taken care of and left alone by vermin, will have food growing out of it. I’ve got my own back patio and my front window for a smallish variety of foods that will hopefully grow.

Key word: Hopefully.

I like eating veg*n and I’m really hoping that the things in my gardens grow to the point where I can put some aside for Winter.

Edema Drama

I’m honestly sick of dealing with it but there’s no helping it. If I want to remain relatively stable and migraine free, I have to take the medications. Even when they swell me up to the levels they have done. This last little break proved that much. Not only was I destabilized but I was also super migraine affected. It’s something I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy.

Still the exercising I’ve done does at least give me the ability to keep moving without resting. Between the weights and all the other stuff I’ve been doing, it’s given me excess strength as well.

Now if I could just find the right combination to actually lose the weight instead of maintain it. Grrr.

I was watching Dr. Oz regarding this subject a few weeks ago. They had a mother and daughter on there who were clearly starting to adopt unhealthy eating habits. I don’t want to do that but, short of extreme caloric limitations, I can’t figure out what will enable me to defeat the edema without diuretics.