Saturday, April 24, 2010

The view from my chair.

I had to clean my desk the other day. One, it was a complete mess, and no, I didn't think to take before pictures. And two, I had to make it nice and pretty for the new member of the family.

Do you see it? Here's a closer look.

That's my new iPad. It will do about 95% of what I need a computer for(maybe a 100% if I can find/buy the right app), so we sold my old computer and monitor. That way we aren't out very much. After a year on the Dave plan(becoming debt free) we both decided we wanted a toy(bribe). He got a cover for his truck bed. I think mine is a much better toy. I have really enjoyed being portable, I had a desktop before and wanted to use the computer in the living room like DH does with his laptop. His is a computer technician, so it is weird being the one with the new tech toy. First time since I've known him, but it just isn't powerful enough to be his only computer. And he couldn't justify having a laptop, ipod touch and an ipad. Maybe when we're rich. There are some things that don't work to well on it. Frames don't really work so Google reader is a pain and the app I have doesn't jump out to the web page like I want. Still looking for a better app. Blogger doesn't seem to work either. Debating on whether to change to a different blog host or find an app to work with it. So, posting this from Techpriest's computer while he is at work. If anyone has any questions let me know, I love to talk about it! I think I might have to start calling it the Guide, for the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

Picture on the wall is my oldest cousin on the left, my grandmother, and me(youngest grandchild). Fairy watercolor is from a swap on craftster. I bought the frame and mat, but have to cut the mat myself, hopefully this weekend. Yarn Harlot calendar. To the right of the iPad is our engagement photo. On the very left is a votive candle holder. In front of that in the middle is a pegasus laying down with folded wings that I made using the lost wax method. To either side is a rocket and pony. Buddha brought them to me.
Did anyone get that? Just two? You guys need to start watching more science fiction.
Thought I would post pictures of my pretty desk while it is still pretty. Pics left to right: friends kids that I'm like an aunt to(though I really need to go see them more often), Uncle Mike, Aunt Diane and I at a cave in Branson(no one else wanted to go), Dad, Mom, DH and I at the car museum in Branson, a dried flower with fairy from a swap on Craftster, me and my brother at his wedding. Crocheted dragon from craftster, unopened geode, fossil fish, salt rock from Hutchinson salt museum, fossil.
Brother's wedding, nephew, dragon egg(craftster), other nephew, piece of art from craftster.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Moss made me famous!

Hey guys! Just a quick note to let you guys know I was featured at athoughtfullife on her Friday Feature. She is spotlighting all different kinds of moss items from etsy, so my handspun moss yarn was picked. All the items are wonderful, you should take a look. It is quite an ego boost to be picked for something like this by someone who doesn't know me at all.

P.S. I want a terrarium! With a little mushroom or gnome!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Status is NOT Quo

I hate myself. I hate my body. I hate my headache. and I hate whatever god gave me this fucking thing. I hate my doctors and right now I most especially hate my nutritionist. Nothing any of them has ever done has done any good for longer than a couple of months. Why do I even try? Why do I waste my money, my time or my energy? Why do I get my hopes up every time? It just makes me more depressed. And when I cry my headache gets worse. Really, why do I even fucking bother? And take away my comfort food and it makes it even worse. Why can't I have a damn cappuccino if it helps me make it through the day? Oh, that's right, because I thought I would try something new. The Status Quo may not be good, but it is a hell of a lot better than this. I've been on this detox program of the nutritionist's for 17 days now, only 4 more to go. It hasn't done anything except make me more depressed. I haven't even lost any weight, which is supposed to be a side effect. And I really think I've been quite good about it. I've tried, I've really tried. So why isn't it working? No matter what I do it is never enough. Seems like I'm always busy but I never get anything done. I can never catch up with the housework and I never seem to have time to do my craft projects either. I dislike cooking too, so I never want to fix supper, but feel guilty when I don't. Why can't I feel better? Why can't it be easier? Why do I and my loved ones have to deal with this? And why do I have to feel so guilty about making them deal with this? Life is crap and anyone who says different hasn't dealt with chronic pain. Every time I try something new it doesn't work and I end up here, feeling depressed and worthless. I manage to keep a fairly even keel most of the time. Occasionally I get depressed, but I can count on hitting bottom when I try something new. And I don't like telling anybody. I don't want them to worry and I don't want to be more of a burden. Barry might have an idea but I don't think anyone really knows. I broke down in front of the psychologist that was evaluating me for disability. I guess if it was going to be only one person best that it was him, huh? I didn't mean too, but it happened. Nobody has seen me hit my own head before. Different pain, you know? No, not most of you. Or does that make me completely weird? So frustrated at that point too. I just want my headache to go away but nothing seems to really help. So why should I try anymore? Is all this just because I'm sick and tired of my diet? I've been wanting to post about this diet for awhile now, it has finally just exploded out of me. For 17 days I've eaten better than I ever have in my life. And nothing has changed. Not my headache, not my energy level and not my weight. I lost weight on the Curves diet. And no, I didn't exercise much, but when my diet has changed this radically it should have had some effect. The last 17 days has just been a complete and utter waste. And I want them back. Called the nutritionist and she said I should stick it out because some people have a change at the end. And to eat more citrus fruits since my adrenal gland must need supported more since I'm craving chocolate. I think I'm craving chocolate because I haven't had it for so long. It isn't like I ate horribly bad before. The worst was the cappuccino a day habit I had. Hardly ever any red meat, lots of veggies and fruits. I want to go out to eat again. I want my life back, not the life before my headache, that's just a dream now, no, I'll settle for the status quo.

Update: Right after I finished writing this yesterday afternoon Barry called to ask me something. I couldn't keep from crying so he came home early, he managed to get me back to about normal. I still want real food, but I'm not depressed anymore. He made me supper and we rented a movie. Lots of reassurance too. I debated about posting this, but I'm hoping other headache/chronic pain suffers will be helped by it. Sorry about the cussing, but I'm leaving them in just to show how frustrated I was. I hope showing my low point doesn't scare anybody off.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Yes, sir, Cap'n Tight-Pants.

Shindig roving, I took my inspiration from the TV show Firefly. Based on Kaylee's fluffy layer cake dress. 2 braids, 5 oz total, Superwash wool, Sheep Shed Studios, Brown Sheep mill ends, Jaquard dyes, hand dyed by me. Here is the dress. Picture from

Second sock made on the trip to Branson, Feb. 2010. Yarn from the Two Windows Dye Co. from Yarns in Hutchinson, KS.

Haven't felt to good this last week. Monday was downright horrible, Tues. I at least felt good enough to make it up to Salina for lunch with a couple of the knit girls then to Stitch N Bitch. Wednesday was much better and I managed to finally get a few things done I've been meaning too. Today I'm feeling fairly crapy again. Ah, well, this too shall pass.

Here are some interesting links I've come across.

Just how big is a billion? Awesome picture of Earth at the end and a great quote from Carl Sagan.

For my knit buddies out there. Use variegated yarn for lace!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Lucky Me and Kitchen Products

I was answering a question about freezer paper stencils in the comments when I realized I could make a post out of it! A short one anyway. Here are a couple of tutorials that I like. There are loads out there.

What is so slick about freezer paper is that if you iron it onto fabric the wax melts and adheres to the fabric so the lines look really sharp. The paint doesn't bleed underneath. They are only usable once though. :(

As for transferring embroidery patterns the neatest thing I've heard about is using Glad's Press and Seal. I haven't tried it yet myself, but it sounds like it would work great.

I'm having some good luck lately. Over at Consciously Frugal I did not win the Made in America dishcloths, but felt good about it because she is sending everyone who wanted one a Your Money or Your Life book. Looks like a good book. A book has the potential to change your life. The most a dishcloth can aspire too, no matter how good it is, is to clean your kitchen.

Then at Our Daily Green Kim decided to give away 3 Preserve toothbrush subscriptions instead of just one. Everyone's a winner! I'll get free toothbrushes for a year! Barry will just have to go find his own! On second thought, that might not be such a good idea...I know he would never even realize he was using the same toothbrush for a year.

Finally, I just sold $50 worth of yarn on my Etsy shop! That certainly made my week. Makes me want to sit down at my spinning wheel again. Too bad I don't have any fiber prepped. Unless I wanted to spin white fiber(which is boring) I need to either dye some or card some. I had a wild desire to just order some on Etsy, like it would get here quicker than I could dye my own. Just because I have the money doesn't mean I should spend it.

PS. I just won an ebook over at Chris's. I hope my lucky streak continues for just a little longer! I have something in mind for it!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Yarn for Sale!

Hey, everyone, I have two skeins of yarn listed and I'll be adding to them. The first one took forever, but now that I have a basic template for the descriptions it is going much quicker. I would appreciate your advice. Did I leave anything out, do I need to change something? I would love to have your opinions!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Am I done with Christmas already?

Seems like a few new people have been visiting this here little blog, probably because I've been interacting (commenting) on some new to me blogs. Who would have figured that is the way it works! It is good to get feedback on my blog too. I certainly haven't been serious about blogging, but I'm beginning to think that being serious might be the problem. I seem to make a big production about each post, which just stresses me out. If I just let the words flow without worrying about them being perfect things go much better. Adding depression into the mix just makes getting anything accomplished even worse. So, I'll try to keep things short and sweet but not perfect and see how things go.

I want to thank everyone who has stuck around for so long with such limited posting from me. And with very limited comments on their blogs! You know who you are. Specially Dana. It means a lot to me.

Karla came by today so I can finally show her and her son's Christmas gifts. For her son I used freezer paper to make a stencil and bleach instead of paint. Paint can fade and crack, though bleach is much easier to mess up. Specially with two sides!

Does anyone recognize the quote? It is words of wisdom from Xander on Buffy, the Vampire Slayer. I think he is my favorite character on that show, or Willow, or Oz, well, one of them anyway!

Rose's Wrist Warmers from Doctor Who. I used these notes for making the pattern using worsted wt. yarn.
Very involved cable pattern. There is cabling every row for the inside diamond pattern. Still very fun though. I would like to make me a pair if I could ever get around to it.

This is my leftover handspun I knit it from. Karla is a beginning knitter so I gave the rest to her so she could make a matching hat. Could probably get a cowl out of the leftovers too. I thought of making them for her myself, but really didn't know when I would get to it.

I'm working on posting some of my handspun yarn on my etsy shop. I'll let you guys know when it is done! And thanks for the interest!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Winter Wonderland

Branson was a lot of fun even though a lot of things were closed. We mostly admired the snow from in front of the fireplace and ate. Good vacation, huh? I love these pictures, I think most of them would make great Christmas cards.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

What a difference a year makes.

Thanks for the compliments on the yarn guys. I'll try to work on the Etsy store after we get back from Branson. Leaving on Saturday and back on Wednesday. My parents are going with us and we are all looking forward to it!

Now for something completely different!

When I started having my headache we lost everything financially. Though we were just actually treading water before that, we thought we were fine since we could make the payments. I had to quit my job, so Barry had to close his business down and go get a normal job so we could have insurance. Then one of the cars was repo'd, then we lost the house and moved into a crappy apartment in McPherson. Let's not forgot all the medical bills either. When we moved to Mac we had a lot more breathing room since we didn't have a house payment or big utility bills. Then I finally was approved for disability and received a large lump sum in Oct. '08. We had learned our lesson and didn't do anything really dumb with it, though we did buy more car than we really needed.

Then, about this time last year, Barry asked me to listen to an audiobook(The Total Money Makeover) and see what I thought. He (and me occasionally) had been listening to a talk radio show, the Dave Ramsey Show, the author of the book. All about financial problems. It is kinda like Hoarders, you can say, "At least we aren't that bad!" at the same time feeling bad for them. Anyway, I thought being out of debt, having money in the bank and most of all, having a plan sounded like a great idea.

We had been planning on going bankrupt. We didn't think we had another choice. We had hired a lawyer back when we first moved to Mac that took forever on doing anything about it, now I might thank him! When we decided to follow the Dave plan, since our plan(or lack of plan) wasn't working, we ran our credit to know for sure where we stood. The house wasn't on there which confused us till we realized since it was a 100% loan we had mortgage ins. That was a load off our shoulders. In March '09 we started Financial Peace University, a class put out by Dave Ramsey. Learned everything from how to do a budget to what life insurance to get, it covers a lot. Doing the budget was like getting a $1,000 raise. Made us realize just what we were spending.

Since then we haven't borrowed money from anyone, taken 2 vacations and going on another(one of our debts was a sampler timeshare) with plenty of money, put more money in savings than we've ever had, and payed off about a 1/3 of our debt. Well, ok, we have two big ones(car and hospital) that I'm not including, but they haven't sent us anything in years and we would like to get Barry through his bachelor program and save up the total amount first. Don't wake the sleeping giant until you know you are going to win the fight.

Yesterday we realized that we had all of our monthly bills for Feb. paid by the 3rd. Isn't that grand? March is our 3 paycheck month so we both wanted to see how the budget for March would look. Our extra money going towards debt will be like getting double time and half compared to normal. Plus we are getting a nice refund. We have since changed our with holdings, no sense in giving the government a loan! With all of that we should be able to get the paid off amount to half the original debt. Excluding the 2 big ones, which don't count right now, remember? We will only have the student loan to go.

This is so exciting for us. Every time we pay off a debt we cross it off(we have a chart and a graph!) and it is amazing how fun it is! Maybe we need to get out more... Anyway, getting to pay off 3 at once instead of one a month will be great. Not having to worry about money and knowing we have some in the bank if there is an emergency is so peaceful. Like when Barry had to have his teeth pulled. Money isn't everything but it sure makes things easier. When you have money it isn't an emergency, it is an inconvenience.

We are looking for another place to live. Overall this place has been good to us, but the negatives are starting to outweigh the positives. Moving might slow us down some, but now we feel we have a choice. That means a lot too.

I have lived paycheck to paycheck. Then I got sick and the walls came crumbling down. I wanted to share our excitement and our story so others can learn from our example. I wish everyone could feel this wonderful lack of worrying about money. Think about that, what it would be like not to have to worry about money?

What a difference a year makes.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Not Enough Fiber!

Dana posted in the comments again, making sure I'm alive. We must be on the same wave length, I've been thinking about posting, her nudge was just the thing I needed. Fiber wise haven't been doing a whole lot. From late Oct. to early Jan. didn't go to any of my fiber groups. No knitting groups, no Minneapolis(ks) spinning group, no Abilene spinning guild. Just didn't work out. Either the weather was bad, I was busy, I forgot or I just didn't feel good. Missed the fiber friends.

Early Jan. I managed to get up to Minneapolis(hr. away) I was up there about 1:30 when Techpriest called. He was sick enough he wanted me to come home. By the time I got there he wanted to go to the ER. I was afraid something was really wrong there for awhile. It ended up being a really bad case of the flu, but I have never seen him like that. He said it was the worst he has ever felt. He had his 4 wisdom teeth pulled not even a week later. That's a lot of pain in just a short while!

Knitted a Christmas present (finished about a week ago) for Karla that I can't show yet as I haven't given it to her yet. That's ok, she isn't done with mine so I beat her! Also made a freezer paper stencil T shirt for her son. I hope I remember to take pics of both of them.

Bought some cotton roving to try. I have to concentrate on spinning it, since it has such a short staple. So I don't find it as fun as spinning wool or alpaca. I'm glad I'm spinning it though, like to stretch my boundaries and it will probably get a little easier the more I do it.

My yarn really wasn't selling at the Yarn Store so I thought I might put it up on Etsy(which hasn't happened yet). Someone bought 3 skeins though as I was packing it up, said she hadn't realized it was there. Here are the most recent skeins I've finished.

Tomorrow the 4 of us from the Minneapolis group are going to Abilene to teach spinning all day to a group of Alpaca breeders! Should be lots of fun, hope I make it through the day!