Friday, December 31, 2021

Finishing out 2021

​Well, it’s New Years Eve and I’m done working and came home and immediately broke out my Pi Shawl I started this week in Einband Icelandic laceweight wool. It’s a brilliant pattern in the beginning, going quickly because you’re growing from 9 to 144 stitches at a good pace.  Then I got to the increase to 288 stitches and hit a wall it seems.  I’m on round 7 of the lace pattern with 288 stitches and have to get to round 48 before I can get the feeling of accomplishment and double the stitches again to 576!  I’m using the lace pattern Elizabeth Zimmermann provides with the Pi Shawl pattern in Knitters Almanac.  I’m thinking of knitting the same pattern for my mom using a mohair/silk blend laceweight but want to see how this one comes out before I work with that fiddly yarn.

Today I got some sad news.  Not only did the wonderful Betty White die, but my favorite YouTuber has put his channel on hold because of some trolls causing him trouble.  Now I’m gonna have to search out new people in the knitting world to follow.  This is the second great knitting podcast that’s been cancelled on me this year and it makes me feel as though I’ve lost a friend.  

Sunday, December 26, 2021

Big Comfy Sweater - Take 2

Well, now that I've finished my Big Comfy Sweater, I've cast on for Johanna's.  I decided after measuring her that I am going to make the 3X size from Blueberry Pudding Caron Big Cakes.  On Christmas Eve I cast on the front & back and on Christmas Day I managed to get both of the ribbings done, so now it's just miles of Stockinette until I have to add the sleeve stitches.  I have one piece on my Prym circular needle and the other piece on my new Denise Sharp Short Tips.  

My other project is doing the spinning homework for my School of SweetGeorgia spinning class.  I got my order of Blue Faced Leicester wool and am working on spinning my first bobbin full of singles, then I have to spin another bobbin with which to ply it into yarn.   I'm getting too much twist in the yarn, so I hope that Felicia addresses that in a future lesson I haven't gotten to yet.  

I put the needles I need for my Scandinavian shawl in my Amazon cart but haven't submitted it.  I'm not sure I really want to start that yet because it looks more complicated than I anticipated.  It's worked in 4 pieces, not one large piece, so I may do the Pi Shawl first, as that's better travel knitting.  

Today I start back at my original job, in the Pharmacy at my store, so I will have more time to knit after work, but no knitting during work like I had doing the school testing job with downtime at slower test sites and between schools.  I hope I made the right decision to come back to the store.  Everything seems to have changed while I was gone for 4 months. 

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Finished my Big Comfy (Ugly) Sweater

​I finished knitting, seaming and weaving in ends on my sweater tonight. Then tried it on and was very disappointed in how it looks on me.  It’s done in bright rainbow stripes and isn’t the least bit flattering. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still gonna wear the hell out of it, because I made it myself, but if someone asks I’m gonna refer to it as my ugly sweater.  The sleeves are really what ruins it. They are made it an unflattering stitch pattern. I may need to rethink my plan to knit this sweater for my daughter since she was going to get a different color way of the same yarn with the same sweater pattern. We’ll see how I feel about it after I wear it in public the next few days. 

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Christmas Week

​This week has been long and busy already and it’s only Tuesday!  I’m still plugging away at my Rainbow Jelly sweater… the back is up to almost the same spot where my back ran out of yarn in the cake, so I will soon have to decide what I’m going to do about it. I have 2 more cakes I could tap into but would have to wind off the yarn till it got to the color sequence my sweater is using. This is the only real issue with self striping cakes. I would really like to finish it tomorrow so I can wear it Thursday on my last day in the schools. It’s dress down all week in the store but easier to wear my scrubs. If I don’t manage to finish it by then I want to wear it on Christmas Eve. It seems like it would be cozy. 

The packages have been rolling in from all my online shopping. My basket of wool is full and more is still on the way. My mohair/silk lace weight and my wool/silk roving came in today. My knitting books came in over the weekend.  I have some BFL wool from The Woolery on the way, and some Merino roving and some carded batts are coming from Paradise Fibers.  I can’t wait to see all these beautiful fibers and be able to start spinning.  I am stuck in the School of SweetGeorgia lesson where she tells you to spin 2 bobbins full of BFL so she can teach how to ply it into yarn.  I’m so excited to give it a try. 

Monday, December 20, 2021

Last Chapter

​Today is the beginning of my last week on my current project at work.  I’m training my replacement Monday-Thursday.  So far, so good.  Mondays are our slowest day as far as number of patients per site that we handle, but we go to five schools so it’s a longer day. Since I’m supposedly training Tom I didn’t bring my knitting. I’m regretting my decision right now while we have an hour between schools. My pattern and Icelandic lace weight yarn arrived this weekend. I also got my Handknitting with Meg Swansen book.  My wool from Paradise Fibers was delivered this morning. I can’t wait to get home and see what it looks like. I’m not going to attempt to spin it until my spinning technique is on point.  I signed up for School of SweetGeorgia to get some help with my spinning techniques. I’m hoping I can get what I need out of the school in 3 months before I have to pay for another quarter. 

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Tough Choices

 Well, I pulled the trigger on my 2nd order from Paradise Fibers since they finally shipped my first order after a week.  I am getting a pound of dyed fiber and 2 batts to spin.  I'm super excited to see what they look like, although it will be a good while before I'm confident enough to use them.  I have another order ready to go for Knitpicks but I'm hesitating because I'm not sure I'll have enough time to knit everything I want to make in the next year.  And 2 of the 3 projects I picked out yarn for are sweaters I've already knit once before.  The other one is a WIP I've given up on.  The more I surf the website, the more stuff I add to my cart, then save to my wishlist, then put back in my cart.   I can't decide!  

I also updated my Ravelry page to get rid of a bunch of defunct projects I've given up on.  While I was at it, I thought about Yarn Hoarder and found that she's since taken down all of her youtube videos which is depressing.  The other person I watched consistently was Smells Like Yarn, and Ross has been attacked and thus taken down a lot of his content as well.  Sad that we live in a world where you can't be friends with strangers without a bunch of assholes ruining it for everyone. 

In today's progress, I was able to get quite a bit done on my Big Comfy Sweater while I was at work and after work.  The Susan Bates digital counter is a miracle worker for me.  Now I don't have to try to figure out what row I'm on at the end of every row.  I packed up Courtney's gifts and have to take them to the post office tomorrow so that she'll hopefully get them before Christmas.  Then a few other errands before I go out to dinner and get back home to work on my crafts.  Christmas is too close for comfort.  I want to get out my Cricut Joy and make some cards to send out on Monday, we'll see if that happens tomorrow or Sunday.  At least I'm not working this weekend.  So that's good.  I need the days off to recoup. 

Thursday, December 16, 2021

Fiber Diet 2022

 Ok, so I've come to the conclusion thru updating my Hobonichi Weeks and my blog that I have purchased a ridiculous amount of yarn and fiber in the past 3 months or so.  I've been working a lot of overtime, which makes me tired, and being tired makes me shop.  Not rational, but true for me.  So, I'm committing to not buying any new yarn in the new year.  I don't plan to buy any more fiber either, but I would like to try spinning a batt at some point, so I'm not ruling that purchase out, but I've got 3 different types of rovings to spin and that should keep me busy for  a good long time.  I'm going to keep track of the amount of yarn I use up in 2022.  Heck, I'm going to add fabric to the list of things I'm not buying next year, because I could literally make pajamas and totebags for everyone I know and still have bolts of fabric left over.  So we're going to call this The Fiber Diet 2022.  It begins Jan 1, 2022.  It applies only to yarn, fabric & fiber, so I am still allowed to buy notions, books and patterns.   Wish me luck!  If you would like to join me, comment below - I would love to hear from you!

Goals for 2022

 As I've been fiendishly buying all the wool and yarn I can (barely) afford, and hoarding tools, I have been planning quite a few future projects and I hope next year will be one where I can spend more time working on my hobbies.  In my search thru my ancient email archives looking for references to a project I made with a specific yarn from Lorna's Laces many years ago, I found copies of some old blog posts from 17 years ago, including the post where I announced the birth of my daughter Courtney.  My posts were very specific about what projects I was working on, had pictures and links, and all the fun stuff that I used to do when my blog was one of my major investments of my life.  After all, it was the reason I lost my job in 2003.  I spent blood, sweat and tears on that thing.  Unfortunately, dismantling it and losing those memories forever did not save my job, so it was all for naught.  

Today I bought yarn and more spinning fiber from Knitpicks, as my window shopping yesterday turned into sale & clearance prices today and I couldn't pass up the deal.  I bought some mohair yarn to make my mom something for Mother's day, most likely Elizabeth Zimmermann's shawl pattern from the cover of Knitter's Almanac.   I also went to Schoolhouse Press and bought a pattern for a lace shawl and 8 balls of laceweight icelandic wool for that.  On Amazon, I bought muslin bags to keep my projects in and my wool clean & tidy, and a copy of Handknitting with Meg Swansen.  My fiber from Paradise Fibers finally shipped tonight.  We'll see what a pound of fiber looks like from them before I order the other color I liked on the site.  For some reason Paypal wouldn't let me buy it the other night.  On my way home from work I went to the Joann's on the other side of town to pick up 4 row counters for my various projects since I keep losing my place and it was screwing up my pattern of ridges on my Big Comfy Sweater.  Both the front and back are now into the top sleeve/yoke area so just the 4 row repeat until I get 10 inches knit.  I'm hoping to finish that sweater this weekend.  I have been knitting during slow times at work and that's helped keep me sane and gotten quite a bit of progress done on this sweater.  

The temperature afghan for Courtney didn't get anything worked on it today.  That will be my secondary project this weekend.  We are supposed to be getting snow on Saturday, so aside from going to my kids' step-grandmother's to get gifts, and getting my nails done, I plan on staying in front of my fake fire and working with fiber all weekend.  I haven't had a Friday night off in about 3 months, so that will also be a relief and some time I can spend with my projects.  I have to work Monday-Thursday next week, then I'm off on Friday & Saturday for the holiday, then I'm back to work on Sunday, so no real "weekend" for me next week.  The following week I'm working Sunday but then have Monday off.  I'm not sure what my job expects of me anymore, but I'm kind of irritated that I'm getting scheduled weekends and nobody else is.  

Spinning Again

 So, I've gotten back into spinning wool into yarn.   I upgraded the flyer on my Babe Production double treadle spinning wheel I bought back in 2010.  I bought new bobbins for it - Standard, Lace and Plying bobbins.  I bought the booklet about how to use the wheel.  Then I sat down and tried to spin and god it's so frustrating when you're building that muscle memory back.  I watched a couple courses on Craftsy.  I got out some wool and my new drop spindle and got frustrated with trying to do that.  My christmas gift from my parents was a 20 pack of roving from Knitpicks, so that I'll have wool for years. I can't wait for my current assignment to wind down next week so that I can spend some time at home doing my crafts.   I've been working an average of 16 hours of overtime a week for the past 3 months, and I'm exhausted. 

My other current projects are my temperature blanket for Courtney which is into April,  and the Red Heart/Lorna Miser Big Comfy Sweater pattern that I'm currently making from Caron Big Cakes Rainbow Jellys yarn.  I've gotten the front & back to the sleeve cast-ons.  I'm working on that during the slow times of my job.  When mine is done in the size small, I will cast on for my daughter's 2-3X size with a different colorway of the same yarn.   My husband's christmas gift to me is a new set of Denise Interchangeable Short Sharp needles and a set of their Interchangeable Crochet hooks and 2 packages of extra cables in every size I could possibly need.  I will be good to go for a long time.  Also I got my Crochet hooks from Furls and was quite disappointed because the Odyssey is so damn heavy and has no thumb rest, so I'm not sure what hold they consider ergonomic, but clearly not how I hold mine.  

I also found some emails from my blog posts back in 2004, including announcing my 17 year old's birth. I did a lot of knitting back then, so it's crazy to me to go back and see how active I was with my crafting. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Final Stretch of 2021

 My first Temp blanket is on March 30th.  I splurged on some nickel hooks from Furls Crochet and I can't wait for those to come in.  I've also splurged on some more yarn - more Caron cakes from Michaels.  Michaels really pissed me off because I ordered 2 cakes of one color and they cancelled them, but I only got credit for 1 because they were buy 2 get 1 free.  I hope I like the Crystal Cakes texture because I bought 6 cakes that didn't get cancelled (Glittering Moonlight and Starry Night).  I also got 4 cakes of another color of the Big Cakes ( Boysenberry) and 3 cakes of Cotton Cakes (Peach Blossom).   I'm not sure what I'm going to use any of these for, but they are all rated 4 Medium/worsted weight so there are definitely unlimited options.  

I started my first Big Comfy Sweater in Rainbow Jelly and I'm almost to the point where I will be casting on for the sleeves.  I bought another smaller set of Denise Needles (the Love2Knit set of size 5-9) so that I could begin before I get my Christmas present, but then I found a triangular Prym needle at Michaels that I like almost better because it has the knob at the tip to help move the yarn from needle to needle easier.  I'm making my size, a Small, so it's going really quickly.  Jo's will take considerably more time because it's a much larger size.  I just hope the small fits me.  It will be a kick in the face if it's too small.  It's supposed to have quite a bit of ease, which is why I decided not to overestimate the size I wear.  Usually I buy up at least 1-2 sizes.  But that doesn't always look flattering.  I'm hoping to have the front done and the back going by the end of this weekend.  I have to work on Sunday, but I should be able to work on it tomorrow and Saturday.  Friday I will be driving during the day and working at night, so no time to knit too much.  We do have some time before our last school where we have to kill time in the parking lot before we go in.  The trick is to be at a point in the sweater where it's even stockinette for a good long while so I don't have to stop to measure or try to guess when I needed to do the cast on for the sleeves.  The sweater is made of only 2 pieces, a front and back.  So the body up to the armpits is all stockinette after 3" of ribbing at the bottom.  I can't wait to wear this sweater.   The best part is that it's acrylic so I can wash & dry the heck out of it and the worst thing that happens is a little pilling.  My other sweaters that I've knit are made of non-superwash wool that I'm downright afraid to wash, so I've worn them until they needed a wash and then set them aside.  One day soon I will figure out how to handwash them with the SOAK wash I bought years ago for the purpose of washing these awesome sweaters.  In the meantime, I'm embracing the acrylic in my life. 

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Progress not Perfection

 So the first temperature blanket for 2004 is up to March 14th.  I like how it's coming out, but the gauge was off so it's going to be closer to 80x90" instead of 90x90".  I've decided to keep going with one afghan at a time instead of being partially thru 3 of them at the same time.  I may also use a different stitch pattern or technique for the 3rd one since the single crochet is quite monotonous and I'm probably going to be sick of doing it by the time I finish the 2nd one, which I already have 1/12th completed so I can't very well change that one at this point.   

I did get my Caron Cakes this week.  Four Anniversary cakes and 8 Big cakes.  I plan to use the bulky weight yarn to make afghans, probably my first Tunisian Crochet project.  And the worsted weight is going to be sweaters for me & Jo, if I can start them in January.  I'm hoping to have at least one of the Temp afghans done by then so that I can start the sweaters and have a block of time to devote to them every day like I'm doing with my current crochet schedule.  In the middle of December I should be back to working just 40 hours instead of averaging 54, so I should be able to spend a couple hours a day working on the yarny projects in my life.  I really want to get the sweaters done so we can wear them this year.  I'm going to use a pattern from Red Heart written by Lorna Miser (who used to own Lorna's Laces back when it was a great yarn company).  It's called Big Comfy Sweater.  Since I will be making it in a size Small and 3X, I will probably make my own first to see how it goes, since the size small will obviously go quickly.  I actually had started this sweater for Jo in a size 2X but I don't think it will fit her and the yarn she picked is Coboo by LionBrand and the stitches aren't very dense so it will be stretched to the point of being see-thru - not a good look.  

I got out my spinning wheel but I'm having no luck remembering how to spin the wool roving I bought.  I need to watch some more videos and maybe reach out to the company I bought the wheel from to see if they can send me a copy of the manual that came with it.  The video I used to watch different spinning wheels being used has since been taken down, so I have to invest some time into finding helpful videos on my wheel.  

I almost bought a Cricut that is on sale cheaper than I've ever seen, but the fact that I've barely used my Silhouette Cameo 4 made me pause.  Where would I put a Cricut?  So I'm somewhat relieved that I stopped myself. I just spent a couple hours downloading files on with all the credits I've been ignoring all year.  I need to use them up so that I can cancel that subscription. 

Monday, November 15, 2021

One Month Down

 I finished the month of January 2002 on my 2 Temperature blankets.  If I concentrate on what I’m working on I can get a row done in 15 minutes. I’m much slower if I’m distracted by the tv or eating at the same time. 

My order of a drop spindle, 13 hanks of wool roving and a Niddy Noddy came in today, which was exciting until I tried to spin and immediately got frustrated. Then I tried the cheap Tunisian crochet hooks I got from Amazon. Don’t buy them. The metal straight ones are fine but the bamboo flex hooks are rough and tore apart my acrylic yarn. I did like the idea of Tunisian crochet so I’m glad I have a couple books on the way. 

For my Christmas present from my husband I splurged on a set of short Denise knitting needles, a set of Tunisian crochet hooks, a set of short cords and a set of long cords.  I love those needles. I own a couple sets but they are misplaced in different projects. I’ve learned now to keep things together so that shouldn’t be such a problem going forward. 

Sunday, November 7, 2021

Temperature Blast Off

 Tonight I started my 2004 temperature blankets.  I’m making two of them as graduation gifts for my niece and younger daughter.  Eventually I will start the 2002 version for my older daughter’s 20th birthday gift. I ran to Joanns for more yarn since my online order was delayed and I realized I would need a lot more yarn to complete 3 of these afghans.  Tomorrow the huge rope basket I ordered from Amazon to hold the 10 colored skeins should arrive.  I’m going to need to dedicate 2 hours a day on these to get them done in 6 months.  It takes about 20 minutes per row and I need to do 2 rows on each blanket each day to get them done in time for gifting in June.  I’m not sure that I can work any faster on single crochet.  I really love the Clover Armour crochet hooks I bought.  I’ve been collecting a lot of crochet hooks lately.  But the Clover ones are just about perfect.  In my order from We Crochet I have 2 complete sets coming that will hopefully be useable.  

I can’t wait for my order from Knit Picks to arrive. I have roving and a drop spindle coming.  I haven’t spun yarn in at least 8 years so I’m not sure if my spinning wheel still works. That’s why I bought the drop spindle kit … to be sure I can spin in either case. It came with a drop spindle, a niddy noddy, and 3 batches of roving.  I also got 10 packs of bare superwash wool to spin.  I can’t wait to get that going. Maybe working on that on thanksgiving which is when I will next have time. 

Thursday, November 4, 2021

Project Overload

 I’ve been shopping like crazy.  In the past few days I’ve gotten a huge order of wool fiber and a new drop spindle, yarn for several temperature blankets, patterns for pj pants I want to sew…. I’m sure I’m forgetting some stuff as well.  Oh a C2C Afghan kit, 2 skeins of sock yarn for beanies…. The list keeps growing. I've decided to make the girls Temperature Blankets for the year they were born.  Depending on how it goes, I might make 3 simultaneously so that I have Courtney & Melanie's done for their graduation from High School this year, and Johanna's for her 20th birthday in June.  It's a lot of crocheting - 365, actually for the graduation ones they will be 366 (leap year in 2004) rows long and about 270 stitches wide.  It's actually pretty cool because my girls were only born 2 years apart in the same city, and their temperature ranges are different.  In one year we didn't get into the single digits for winter, and the other year we never broke 90 in the summer.  Courtney & Melanie were both born in April 2004, so I only had to research the temps for 2 blankets once.  Then I was on a roll and decided to make one for Johanna as well, so I looked up all the temperatures for 2002 too.  I swatched the Caron One Pound yarn I had on hand while I wait for my Joann's order to arrive with the actual project yarn and determined that I get 3 stitches to the inch and about 4 rows per inch, which means I'm gonna aim for a 90" square afghan for each of them.  I have about 7 months to complete them, so I need to work 2 rows per afghan per day to stay on track.  I just hope I don't get sick of the project and give up.  Sometimes I get into a slump and decide to give up rather than soldier on and finish it.  Since these are pretty hard deadlines, I hope I can stay motivated and get them done.  6 rows a day doesn't seem like much, but that's because I'm not staring at a seemingly endless single crochet project.  This does mean that my current projects of my rainbow afghan and the Christmas afghan are probably going to be put away in order for me to start another project.  For those keeping track, 3 temperature blankets is about 296,460 stitches without any border to speak of.  This might be an impossible feat, but I'm going to challenge myself to stick with it until it's done.  I'm excited to get started but the yarn is on the way to me.  

Tuesday, March 30, 2021


 Well, yesterday was another milestone for me.  I passed my PTCB certification to become a Certified Pharmacy Tech.  I can honestly say I have no idea how I passed.  I feel like I guessed about 40% of the time.  Unlike the A+ certification when I worked in tech support, or my NY State Board Licensing exams for Nail Tech or Esthetics, I went in feeling wholly unprepared and went thru the whole exam thinking I had no idea what I was doing.  I don't have a good feeling about it for my co-workers who have only been working in the pharmacy for a few months.  They are younger and college students, so more in the mindset of studying and memorizing, so that might save them.  Clearly the class they had us take thru work was useless.  If I hadn't crammed with 2 study guides for the past couple weeks, there is no way I would have passed.  I will find out my actual score in a couple weeks when it posts online, but for now I'm just relieved that I've passed and can put that behind me for the next 22 months until I have to renew my certification.  

Now that studying is done, I'm looking forward to getting back to cleaning my room and office and getting some sewing projects done.  I bought the H2O 2GO pattern and I'm just waiting for my waterproof canvas to come in so that I can either find something coordinating in my stash or go shopping for something that matches.  My online orders seem to be getting lost in oblivion lately.  I still haven't gotten my glasses or my Cirkul orders from 2 weeks ago.  I want to do some other bags/pouches for my planner supplies as well.  I might look up which patterns I want to use tonight.  They have to come with youtube tutorials or I'm gonna struggle.  

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Cue the Confetti!

 Today I went to Lenscrafters and got my eyes checked.  Unsurprisingly, my eye sight has gotten worse in both eyes in the past 2 years.  I thought I was going to need bifocals this time around, but I actually am fine with better distance lenses.  The doctor couldn't figure out what the last eye doctor was trying to do with my prescription.  But I opted to order contact lenses from them, and then I came home and ordered some glasses from Pair Eyewear that I've been seeing non-stop in my FB feed lately.  Yes, I am a sucker for Sesame Street, so I got The Sesame Family frames, as well as Confetti, white hearts, stone grey and teal toppers and a pair of Black Larkin frames to wear with all of them.  I hope I like them, but if I don't they have a 30 day money back guarantee that I will definitely be taking advantage of for the price.  

After the eye doctor, Jo & I went to the casino and played the slots for a while.  She won some and I broke even, which I consider a win given my track record of losing every time in the past year. Now I need to pre-Monday and prepare for another long week since Ashley will be on vacation this week.  

My exam is scheduled for a week from Monday, so I've got to study viciously all week to try to get at least a 75 on the exam.  My practice tests have been coming in around 70 percent so I'm really starting to freak out about it.  

My Stalogy notebook is working beautifully.  I can't wait to update it each day.  And my stickers from Planner Kate came in.  

Well, back to studying. 

Saturday, March 13, 2021

Proud of myself

 Tonight I was getting ready to spend a ridiculous sum of money on stickers for my planner because they came in a handwritten font of someone I follow on Instagram and love her neat printing.  I decided to try to make the stickers myself using my Silhouette Studio software, but I was struggling.  I looked up and watched a 15 minute video and not only did it teach me the quickest way to make script stickers for my planner, it showed me that the woman's font was readily available for purchase online.  So for $8 and a couple hours of time, I saved myself potentially hundreds of dollars.  I looked at the store I was planning to buy from and jotted down ideas of the stickers I might have purchased as well as ideas of things I always write down in my planner, like my work schedule and To Do List.  I made 3 pages of stickers  that have about 2 months of daily headers and to do list headers, a couple months of work schedule stickers, and a week of other random stickers I use maybe once or twice a week.  I still placed a decent sized order because there were other items that I wanted from that shop.  But like I've said before, printable stickers are the way to go for me because I'm afraid to use up stickers I pay for physical product.  I went back thru my etsy orders and I think I paid $80 or $90 for an order from Once More with Love and I couldn't tell you what happened to that batch of stickers, except that I know for sure I didn't use them.  They are somewhere safe, and I'll probably come across them in the next couple weeks as I clean up my planning areas of my bedroom and craft room.  One of the things I did buy was a reusable sticker book with the silicone sheets to stick your leftover or unused stickers in.  I think that will help me plan out what I want to do before I actually start sticking permanent stickers into my planner and then regretting it.  I can't wait to set up next week with my new stickers and the Tab Tapes from Lauren Phelps Designs on Sunday.  I need to find some images to print onto acetate and vellum to decorate too.  Daksina is a bad influence.  

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

All I want is to sleep thru the night!

 I can't remember the last time I actually slept thru the night.  I wake up every night around 1-3am and can't get back to sleep for a couple hours, then sleep right until the last minute before I'm late for work.  And of course I don't want to wake up my family, so I try not to get up and do anything productive that will make a lot of noise, like anything on my to-do list that I didn't have time or energy to do after work yesterday.  Like cutting stickers (the Cameo 4 is LOUD), printing post-it notes (me moving around in the craft room is never quiet), hanging up my clean laundry, etc.  I could go down and work on my puzzle in the dining room but it's at a point that there are no easy sections to put together, and I don't feel up to being frustrated.  So I'll probably just put on an episode of something true-crime from YouTube and try to go back to sleep.  Wish me luck!

Sunday, March 7, 2021

Paper Addict

 In case you weren't already aware, I am a paper addict and hoarder.  I have countless notebooks, reams of different weights and sizes of paper, post-its to last well into the next decade.  I'm also addicted to other forms of stationery, but that's a subject for another day.  This morning I wasn't able to stay asleep, so I got up early and proceeded to use my brand new printer for the first time, printing stickers I bought on Etsy a couple years ago for relatively inexpensive.  13 different files cost me a whopping $14 and change.  Each file is 4 "sheets" of stickers on a letter or A4 page of sticker paper.  Now the artist prints and sells the physical sticker sheets for about $3 each, or $12 a page!  I wanted to get some other designs but there's no way I'm paying those prices.  I don't know how people afford to buy stickers on 3.5 x 5" sheets for $2-4 each.  When I was the only one of my friends who had a Silhouette machine, I felt guilty charging my friends $1 per page for stickers to be print & cut.  And I would be afraid to use the stickers because then the money would be wasted, even though I could always see them in my planner, my hoarder psyche wouldn't be able to get beyond the fact that the stickers were gone from their sheet and therefore "wasted."   For that reason, I prefer to buy sticker files that I can print and cut myself, so I feel free to use them up because I have an infinite supply.  So, I guess I will have to make do or do without, huh?

While I was bored and awake, I also shopped on Amazon, which is dangerous to my wallet.  I picked out some vellum paper I can print on with my printer, 5x7 and 8.5x11 photo paper, 5x8 blank index cards, and a construction paper organizer that will fit my 12x12 cardstock and scrapbook paper pads.  I also splurged on a Hydroflask water bottle, promising myself that I will start drinking water instead of coke starting next weekend on the 13th (4 weeks after my birthday, just an easy target date to remember.) I will save in soda what I spent on the ridiculously priced water bottle in about 3-4 weeks.  The main thing is that I will have saved my teeth and midsection a lot of acid and sugar.  I picked a 32 ounce one with a straw top so that I can sip at work.  At home I only drink Lipton Diet Citrus Green Tea, and I don't plan to change that.  

So, once I was awake and had spent a good chunk of change.  I printed & cut about 20 pages of stickers and some sticky notes I downloaded from free websites.  Peanuts Planner Co approved me for their facebook group, so I printed some of their calendar and list post-it notes.  My post-its are quite old.  I am expecting white post-its in todays shipment from Amazon which will let me print some other floral notes I have downloaded from  I just love that my planner is looking somewhat like Daksina's at this point, with only the first daily page filled in so far.  She has a great system that I envy because it's so beautiful and functional.  I don't follow any other B6 Stalogy creators because I want to stick to one format that will work for me.  If I give this a go and it's not right, I might look at other content creators to see what they are doing differently.  The one exception is that I've briefly looked at Brandy Michelle Plans because Daksina has done collabs with her, but I'm not turned on by her style. 

Saturday, March 6, 2021

HP Envy

 Today I bought a new printer after being frustrated for the last time because I needed to get up and load sticker paper in the printer before I could print from my bedroom.  At one point I had 2 Canon Pixma printers so that I wouldn't have to stop to load 4x6 photo paper and that feeling of freedom called to me.  I looked into more HP printers online and went to Walmart which didn't have any in stock, and ended up choosing an HP ENVY Pro 6455 at Target.  I got 4 months of free printing with HP Instant Ink, and then plan to put it on a $0.99 or $2.99 plan per month so that I can just print my stickers on it.  My existing printer will still be my workhorse for documents on regular paper.  That sucker is holding up well and I hope it stays that way.  It's an OfficeJet Pro 8620 that I've had for about 6 years now and love.  With the exception of sometimes not wanting to link up via wifi, it's been a great product.  I intended to downgrade my plan on that machine, since they hiked the prices when they added more printing tiers, but when I look at how much I've been printing the past few months, I'm better off keeping the higher plan for the time being.  After I get a few months of usage out of the new printer, we'll see how I feel about the original plan.  

I came home and ate dinner and then got started cutting my stickers that I'd printed last night.  Some of the new printable stickers I bought on Etsy are misbehaving when I go to register the pages on my Cameo so I got frustrated and gave up for the night.  I did sit down and start setting up my b6 Stalogy using my printable calendars that I got from a few websites like, and Maddie at Lovely Planner.  After buying some printables that didn't work (one file was corrupted, several others have registration marks too close to the edge to work), I'm hesitating before buying more on Etsy.  I could still cut them with scissors or an exacto knife, but I didn't get a $250 machine to use scissors, ya know?   My order of Vellum and Acetate should arrive tomorrow, so I'll be able to print some files and tip in some stuff if I have the time and energy.  Tomorrow is a NASCAR race day, so I usually spend the afternoon in bed watching that.  I have so many other things I should be doing tomorrow, but a part of me wants to look thru a basket of yarn projects I bought many moons ago from Craftsy and start something fresh, like a shawl.  My swift and ball winder are put away for now to make room for my Cameo 4, so it would take some effort.  We'll see how tomorrow goes. 

The Cozy Killer Strikes Again

 The Cozy Killer is what we call Johanna when she wakes us up unnecessarily early in the morning, either on the weekend, or even sometimes strikes on the weekdays I don't have to be to work early in the morning.  She comes in my room and shakes my foot until I acknowledge her, usually with whisper shouting to leave me alone.  She always wants to do something, but never the stuff that needs to be done.  Laundry, cleaning up the pop cans littering her desk, etc.  That's not the "something" she wants to do.  Never mind that it needs to be done.  And this wasn't how I wanted to start my Saturday morning.  Especially after a god awful week.  My goal for this weekend was to clean up my craft room and reorganize my clothes closet.  Now I will settle for doing one of them.  I'm not sure which one at this point.  I have bushels of clean clothes that need to be sorted and hung up on the new 2nd rod extension I bought from Amazon this week.  In order to hang that, I need to get rid of 2 plastic drawer units that are current on the floor of my closet that I haven't used in 5+ years.  I'm hoping they fit under my sewing table so I can use them for that purpose, otherwise I have no idea where they will go.  I want to get my Stalogy started this weekend, although I think I'm going to set it up starting in April.  We'll see how I feel when I get the craft room cleaned and I can sit at my desk to think. 

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Down the Stalogy Rabbithole

 After watching a bunch of Daksina's videos on youtube, I decided to give her planning method another try.  I just love the idea of having all sorts of artistic elements blended into a planner system.  I ordered a new B6 Stalogy and several types of adhesive tabs from Amazon before I could think too hard about it.  Then I went to Lauren Phelps Designs and bought a cover for the notebook and some of the tab tapes that Daksina uses in her planner.  Now I have to wait for everything to get here so I can get started with it.  I'm not sure what I'll use my Chic Sparrow traveler's notebook for if I'm using the Stalogy.  I'm sure I can find something else to do with it.  I have all the pocket notebooks to fill it for years.  I want to use up my stickers and papers that I've bought.  This weekend I want to get my office cleaned up so that I can have a space to work on the creative aspect of planning.  

I can't believe it's March already.  The decision to start planning in the Stalogy for this month or waiting until the tab tapes come in and starting next month.  Tough choice.  Gonna see how I feel once it arrives from Amazon. 

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Sunday, Boring Sunday

 Today I wasn't able to get a good night of sleep so I was a little irritated when Jo asked to go to my parents house so she could ask my dad to be her ComHab worker.  I bought some extra sleeping time by making her take a shower, get dressed and do a load of her laundry.  Then I had to get up and get going.  We got to my parents house to find they had gone shopping and weren't even home.  I took the time waiting for them to get home to scroll thru my phone and watch some of youtube videos.  I helped my dad file a complaint about a product he purchased that arrived damaged.  He's had an iphone for about 4 years and hasn't learned how to text or check his voicemail, let alone send an email.  He begrudgingly agreed to Johanna's request for him to work for her.  Then my mom loaded us up with frozen foods we didn't need and we headed home.  

I spent some time working on my puzzle, watching Willy Wonka and taking a short nap while Dan grocery shopped.  Then it was time to watch the Nascar race.  A totally boring race.  At one point I nodded off but woke up when Dan got up to make our flatbread pizzas for dinner.  Our digital antenna was being lazy towards the end of the race and kept cutting out.  Very annoying.  

When the race finished I went downstairs and worked on my puzzle some more. I'm at the frustrating part where I'm missing some obvious pieces from the mostly finished parts, and can't seem to figure out the big parts that have many pieces to organize and arrange.  And I dumped one of the boxes of pieces on the floor, so I have to rearrange those all face up tomorrow when I'm less frustrated. 

I made a new playlist of the songs I played on repeat during my time at community college in 1996-97.  I miss the days when I would just put one album on repeat and listen to it non-stop.  Those are the times when I really feel like the music merges with my life and I really relate to that time in my life when I hear it.  My time at MCC was one of those times.  When I hear No Doubt, Jewel, Fiona Apple, it takes me back to those days.  When I hear Lorde I think of when I had my gastric bypass surgery in 2013, and Eminem's Marshall Mathers LP 2 reminds me of my post-op time at the gym and walking the beach path every day.   I don't really listen to complete albums by a particular artist anymore.  I more listen to the top hits from the radio and then shazam them into my library.  I used to build weekly Hollywood Hamilton Weekend Top 30 lists every week, but they don't seem to publish the lists and I don't have the time or patience to listen to the show and make the list that way.  

Tomorrow I go into work at 9:30am, so I hope I get a good night's sleep since I have a little extra time to sleep.  

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Too Many Hobbies, Not Enough Time

 Isn't it just the truth that there is never enough time?  I have so many interests and there just never seems to be enough time to spend on each of them.  Then I feel guilty that I'm ignoring one of my hobbies in favor of something else.  Today I got a new MacBook Air so I've spent the whole day trying to get familiar with it, loading onto it some of the applications that I used on my trusty 2012 MacBook Pro.  That sucker was worth every penny.  I was depressed to learn that Apple has (finally) stopped supporting it with software upgrades, so it was time to get a newer model.   One of the things that I need a laptop for is my Silhouette Studio software that runs my Cameo 4 that I got for Christmas from Dan.  The main reason I wanted to get the newer model was that it was wireless capable and my old Cameo 2 wasn't.  But it wouldn't work with my older laptop, so I still had to trek across the hall to plug in my laptop to the machine.  Not convenient at all.  Today I was able to cut a removable vinyl skin for my machine without plugging it in (I did still walk across to my craft room to see what it was doing, but at least I didn't have to mess around with cords and jacks.)

Then this evening I went down to the dining room and worked on my skating puzzle for a while.  I can't wait to finish it so that I can order another one I found online and am forcing myself not to buy until I have time to work on it.  Not to mention that I need to seal the last one I did with the glue sheets I ordered from Amazon.  

While I'm working on the puzzle, I'm feeling guilty for not sewing because the sewing space in my previous living room is out of control - overflowing with fabrics quite literally.  I still haven't managed to make one thing with my serger that I bought myself for christmas in 2019.  Last year we had the pandemic starting lockdown mid-march and all I seemed to do was buy fabric and plan projects for quilts and pjs and masks for months.  Now the momentum is long gone and the fabric is piled up all over the place.  I still want to sew, I just don't know what to make. 

My knitting/crocheting has been sidelined for quite a while now.  Since I started working as a pharmacy tech last year, I haven't been able to wear my knit beanies every day, so I stopped knitting those non-stop.  Two weeks ago I went to Joann's and bought floss to make some friendship bracelets while I was waiting for the Daytona 500's rain delay all damn day.  I got bored after a dozen or so stripes so I will probably work on that during the race tomorrow.  

Reading has gone by the wayside completely, with the exception of a few of my favorite books that I re-read from time to time.  Mainly the Marked Men series from Jay Crownover, which is my favorite book series.  I still want to read the Outlander series, but that requires a lot of concentration and time.  I have the ebooks, the paperbacks, and the audio books so that I can read them however I feel at the moment.  Listening to them is challenging because if I'm trying to multitask I really need to pay attention or before I know it, I've lost touch with the storyline.  I've only finished thru season 3 of the TV show, and I really want to watch the newer seasons but there is a part that wants to read them first or I fear I never will, like the Harry Potter books - I read the first one, then just watched the movies after that.  

Another thing that I wanted to do was play Paper Mario on my Nintendo Switch Lite, but that's a lot more challenging than I'm ready for.  I need someone to sit along side me and tell me what I'm supposed to be doing, and nobody wants to do that with me.  I watched a video walk thru and it was boring as hell and I didn't really absorb what they were doing to be able to then do it myself.  

I guess my Penpal hobby is going ok.  I've been writing to the 2 women I am penpals with on a regularish basis so far this year.  I will probably write them tomorrow.  Maybe I will type the letters on my cool new laptop.  

I have contemplated buying another planner to add to my hobby/collection - the April start of the Hobonichi Weeks planner.  But I'm not sure what I would put in it.  This past week was so busy at work that I didn't even update my Recollections planner or my Chic Sparrow travelers notebook.  So another $28-40 planner doesn't really make sense.  But I want it anyway.  I must resist. <grin>

Well, I think that about sums up my hobby dilemma of the weekend.  How about you?  Do you have too many hobbies to keep up with?