oh the places I go

Welcome to Monday. No, I don’t care if you still have your receipt, you can’t get a refund. Buck up, little camper, here we go again…

Tao Silk Scarf – not using silk, maybe alpaca?

This is the “personal” project that I’m working on most right now. The pattern was free from Jimmy Beans Wool and is pretty straightforward; just a 4 row repeat. I’m using a ball of unknown laceweight yarn from my stash. I suspect it started life as “naked” alpaca from KnitPicks that I dyed myself about a thousand years ago but I don’t honestly remember. It’s pretty, it’s easy, and it makes me happy.

Other things that are making me happy include making a few more holiday gifts over the weekend, getting connected with a local knitters group that will happily take the hats and scarves I’ve been making and donate them to their chosen charity this year (I just need to get all of the ends woven in), and Lancelot. I mean honestly, what’s not to be happy about with a partner who gets what “partner” actually means.

Another thing that makes me happy is being a student, and I realized last week that it’s been too long since I wore that hat. I am not at all interested in another degree right now – for one thing I don’t think I can afford it in terms of my mental health. The university I work for covers some tuition costs if you attend one of the system schools, so that would help if I did decide to pursue a program there again, but mentally and emotionally I know that I don’t have what it would it would take to do justice to another full-on graduate degree. Not right now at least.

Instead I’m going to do a professional certificate program, all online and from the comfort of home, and I should be done in about a month. All for $50 and it comes very highly recommended. I’m excited about this. I really am someone who thrives on learning new things.

Goals update

Y’all probably know by now that I set myself some goals every year. I do not believe in the whole “new year’s resolution” thing, but I do believe in pushing myself to do new things and try to do some old things even better. The list for 2022 was (comments for each in brackets):

  • No new yarn (I have only bought yarn once, for a very specific project that was commissioned by a friend)
  • Learn a new knitting skill (I’ve finally learned how to knit with two colors!)
  • Complete at least one creative project every month (so far August was my slowest month with only 7 projects)
  • Learn a new craft skill (I’ve learned several new techniques for beading and jewelry making)
  • Try at least two new recipes every month (we’ve tried far more than this and loved 99% of them)
  • Plant and maintain a vegetable garden (we had tomatoes, two kinds of peppers, strawberries, and assorted herbs growing on the deck; I’ve started clearing space in the existing flower beds to accommodate a proper garden next year)
  • Lose 50lbs (this is the goal that I’ve struggled with the most and haven’t made any real progress with)

I’ve already been working on my goals for 2023, mostly so that I can be prepared. I’m 99.999% confident these are set now:

  • No new craft supplies (unless I manage to completely deplete my stashes of stuff)
  • Finish all of my kits (beading, knitting, etc. including the ones I’ve put together for knitting projects)
  • Read at least 4 books
  • Establish and maintain habits/routines for exercising
  • Complete at least 5 creative projects each month (anything creative counts – drawing, knitting, jewelry, LEGO, etc)
  • No new clothes unless I need new underwear or bras
  • No new shoes
  • Lose 50lbs
  • Post on my blog at least once per week
  • Learn how to bake bread from scratch
  • Earn at least one professional certificate
  • Learn at least one new craft skill

I think those should be both challenging yet absolutely attainable. And, in an effort to be able to tell when I’ve finished all of the kits I have, I’ve started taking an inventory of everything I have in the house. That’s been a great exercise because I’m uncovering things that I had completely forgotten about. It’s like shopping without spending any money.

I’ve considered going back to doing goals on a weekly basis; not quite sure about that yet. I will say I feel there’s a lot to be said for it in terms of keeping accountable. For now, it’s Monday and it’s time to see where today takes us.

Eric and Froggy are trying to hide from Monday, unsuccessfully

sometimes the pieces come together a lot later than you thought they would

Project from this weekend

Lancelot and I seem to have started a tradition of sharing a bottle of wine on our anniversary, and being the sentimental fool that I am, I’ve kept the corks from those two bottles. I wasn’t really sure why, it just seemed right. Yesterday I decided to see if I could make them more visible and that’s exactly what happened. I wrapped the corks with a bit of wire and added some sparkly bits. The other one is the same concept but with different accents. I have them hanging on the plant stand and they’re just perfect. I love projects that combine found objects and supplies I already have on hand.

I have definitely been keeping busy with the crafting lately. I finally finished some ornaments I had started working on sometime earlier this year, because the inspiration for how to finish them finally came to me. And I modified that Dragon Egg pattern to use some Koigu KPPM I had in my stash and ended up with a cozy for a plant jar.

I have no idea how much of a skein I used for this because it had been salvaged from a project of unknown origin and has been in my stash for well over 10 years. I had approximately 90 zillion ends to weave in because of this so instead of weaving them in I threaded them all to the inside and hid them instead. It’ll be our secret, shhhhh…

Keeping with my goal of not buying any yarn this year, and realizing that it wasn’t a struggle, has me thinking about going even bigger (actually smaller) next year. My thinking right now is that I won’t buy any new yarn, kits of any kind, or craft supplies next year. The caveat to all of those is that if I somehow manage to run out then my goal will have basically been met. But trust me, that’s not going to happen. I started making a list of just the bead kits I have and there are 10 on the list so far. So far. That doesn’t count the knitting kits, the crochet kit, felting kits, and other assorted craft kits that I know are lurking in this house. Step one is going to be to find and catalog all of those.

In other news, Lancelot and I took a mini-vacation to Des Moines, IA last Friday and had a blast. We went to the Art Center, Botanical Garden, an art gallery, and had the famous Crab Rangoon pizza at Fong’s. It was great to be able to get away and not spend an entire day on travel. It took less than a full tank of gas for the round-trip, plus we only needed a hotel for one night and L found a very nice place that was smack in the middle of what we wanted to see and was reasonably priced and had a fantastic continental breakfast. On Saturday when we got home we hung out and watched way too much TV and just had a really good time together.

We are sort of adorable together

psych update

There’s actually not much to update right now. I won’t see the doc again until the end of November, though I do see my therapist just about every other week. I think that therapy, like the medication, will always be a part of my life and I’m really ok with that. I feel very strongly that we all need someone to talk to that we know won’t judge us and will help us find solutions to situations that we just can’t talk to anyone else about. It’s just good for the soul.