My 1 Million Row Challenge

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Bits and Pieces

I don't get to decorate the dead computer as a center piece. Apparently John and I had major differences in how to decorate it. So John boxed it up.  I guess I will have to go with traditional Thanksgiving decorations. 

I am still in the purging junk from the house mode.  I wish I had grown up in a house that did not have to hang on to everything.  I have managed to fill 1/2 the recycle bin since yesterday.  I have learned that once something is gone I don't have to deal with it again.  I am also finding more things that need to go, even in areas I thought were done. I am hoping that all this work now will give me time to play catch up with my on line spinning class next week.  

I also think that the new medical supply company that the insurance company assigned us to bid their contract price to low.  When we needed new supplies for Eric's suction machine they sent us parts from another machine. They also sent us trech supplies. No trech here. When I called to say that the machine was not working right with the wrong parts. I was told that the parts were no longer available.  That I had to kludge the parts together and try to make it work. My only question to the insurance company and the medical supply company is; why are the necessary parts available on Amazon, EBay and at least a dozen other sites.  My search was so exhaustive that it took all of 15 minutes. In that 15 minutes I did notice that the retail price of the wrong parts were between 20 and 40% less expensive than the correct parts.  Which brings me back to the first question, why did the medical supply company make their bid so low that they can not do the job that they are being contracted for?  This was my head desk moment for the day. 

Only one more day until Company comes for the holiday weekend. So the work that is not done tommrow will not get done until after company leaves.  We'll that is not entirely true.  I will try to keep up with the laundry. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Busy as Usual

Eric is sick again. I did the usual of being up late and waking up early with him.  After a trade off with John I took a nap. 

I managed to get 2 1/2 hours of more deep cleaning in. With 3 more baskets of recycling going out. No matter how much I toss I still seem to find more to toss.  John also started the repair job on the sewing table. 

Tomorrow I will get the the counters done  and the last bastion of clutter will be taken care of.  Although I am not quite sure that I know how to turn a dead computer that is in parts into a center piece for the Thanksgiving table. I am thinking pleanty of candles.  I will also try to get the last of the shopping done. 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

A Wet Weekend

We had an unusual winter storm this weekend. We got 2.5 inches of rain in 36 hours. Considering that we consider 12 inches of rain a good year, this was an exceptional storm.  I am glad that it was a slow rain so that the cactus and trees had a good deep soak. I also do feel very badly for the riders in the El Tour de Tucson bike race. For those riders going the 111 mile route who did not make it past Sabino Creek before it was closed, I am truly sorry that you did not get to finish your race. I hope that you give us another chance in the future. We would love to have you back. 

Since it was a cold and rainy weekend we stayed home. I have a house full of company coming Wednesday for Thanksgiving so I am working on last minute cleaning.  I also took time to start the next batch of hats. I got 7 done this weekend. 

I also now know what John considers a reasonable yarn and fiber stash. I have a lot of knitting and spinning before I get it down enough. 

I am looking forward to this week, even though I will be super busy. Have a wonderful week. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

Understanding People

Sometimes I really don't understand people. Take yesterday for instance. I listened to a speaker from a local charity. She talked about all the good work her group was doing helping children. this was perfectly acceptable. Then she went on to criticize the very people her group was helping use racial overtones just because the people her charity were helping were not like her.

I would like everyone to remember "That all Gd's children are special ALL the time." and that we are all Gd's children. No matter what your religion or race we all bleed red. No matter your economic standing we all bleed red.

I am not saying that you have to like or agree with all other religions or cultures. The really important thing is that you have to RESPECT all other cultures and religions. All cultures have provision for helping the elderly, frail and less fortunate among us. Not everyone can be the top 1 percent , the math just does not work out that way. So we do have to work together to make this a better world.

In an ideal world we would all have a roof over our heads, food on the table, enough clothing, heat or fire wood for a cold winters night. Even health care. But the world is not perfect and we need to help one another through life. We come into to this world alone and leave this world alone. In between we need to help and care for one another. "For no man is an island".

So as the holidays approach try to be a little kinder. If someone is looks great, tell them. A kind word or action go a long way. Donate things you no longer need to charity, its good for the environment, your closets and your wallet. Live life and treat other people the way you would like to be treated. Yes, it the whole Golden Rule thing. I am an idealist who has been tempered with reality, so come join me in my world for a while.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Busier Than a Bee

It has been crazy busy around here. I have holiday guests arriving on Wednesday. I really think that it was a very good thing that I started cleaning 3 months ago. It gave me time to really go through everything. I know that I have not reached perfection by any means, but I consider it a major victory to only have 2 boxes of things that need to be dealt with instead of a whole room going into the garage.  

I will have 30 hats leave the house tomorrow for the knitting guild challenge. I have also found a small local school district that is very willing to give out more hand knit items to their students through their family resource center. I have 5 gallons of yarn for that project. I have 21 hats finished for that project. That means I have finished 51 hand knit hats in the last 30 days. Sadly even with 51 hats knit this month, it has not made much of a dent in the yarn stash. Just to give you an idea of how much yarn was used. Each hat took the equivalent of 1 skein of yarn which equals about 51 skeins of yarn. Of course I used a lot of bits and pieces to make the hats more colorful. 

I have run out of some of my design mojo for now. I have been asked to design and sew up some project bags for other peoples knitting. I am really thinking that after Thanksgiving would be a better time  to start this project.  I will feel less rushed and will come up with something way better if I wait. 

We'll I have another crazy busy day tomorrow so it's time to call it a night. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Surrealism in Action

Today was on of those really surreal days around here. The day started off at 5:30 am with Eric needing everything from an early morning physical therapy session to suctioning and everything in between. I did manage to get the laundry started at 6:00 am. By 7:00 am it was decided that Eric needed another down day. He had the sniffles and was cranky all day. By 8:am I knew that I was really out of sync and not much would get done today.

I was really weird at the grocery check out line today too. There were some guys on what I presumed was a golfing trip behind me. What happened next was total rudeness to the max. It appears that everything that they forgot to pick up or looked good from my order they just took and added it to their order instead of going back and getting it off the shelves  for themselves.  I thought it was odd that the cashier said that my order was a little light today. Silly me, I thought it was just that I had a short list. Not until I got home did I realize that things were missing. So I checked the car again to see if I had forgotten anything in the trunk, well the trunk was empty. Next I started checking my receipt and none of the missing items were on the receipt. At least I did not get charged for grocery's that I did not get. The funny thing is that the missing items were scattered all through my order not just at the end. So I had to go grocery shopping for the second time today to get the bread and other things that were missing from the first list.

I can say that I am pretty used to the driving of the tourist's making right turns from the left turn bay and making left turns from the right lane. I answer all kinds of questions as to where certain stores are located. I even tend to steer them to locally owned stores when there is one that fits the bill. What happened today at the grocery store was a little out there even for the height of the winter season and the kicker was that they were not even snow birds.  I just wonder if am am the only ones that the nuts are attracted too?

I am hoping for a better day tomorrow so I can play catch up from today. Did I mention that Eric managed to fill his laundry basket again?

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Laundry Math

The math just does not add up I did 4 loads of laundry Saturday with 1 load left over. I started doing laundry at 6 am this morning. I had 1 load from Saturday and 5 loads from today with all the laundry finished by 4 pm. So how is it that just 6 hours later I have at least 3 new loads of laundry. How does 1 boy make so much laundry? Is there an evil genie who goes around just pulling clothes out of drawers to be dirtied and thrown back in the laundry  before the fresh laundry smell is gone?  I sometimes wonder if Eric has a deal with Proctor and Gamble, he will make as much dirty laundry as possible if they agree to put Tide coupons in the Sunday paper once a month. The thing I don't want to hear is that you do only 2 to 4 loads a week. That is unless you convince my son that he does not have to keep mommy busy by doing laundry.

There are other things in life that I love to do. I have signed up for an on line course that I have yet to crack the "book" open or even completed the 1st home work assignment. I have another 6 classes that I need to listen to before next semester for my religious studies class. I can not forget all the yarn I want to knit up in to charity hats next to couch, I think it is about 4 gallons of yarn. Yes I count my yarn in gallons and quarts for the reason that 4 gallons of yarn sounds better than counting just how many skeins make up a gallon of yarn. Also how much  I have to knit up. Its a little less daunting that way. Did I mention that I have both spinning wheels in mid project with a few spindles busy too. Yes I am making more yarn too.

In the sewing room today I just finished a set of toddler bibs. I bought the supplies more than several years ago to go to a set of twins who are now in elementary school. So as long as they are finished, the bibs will now be going to a friends granddaughter. While I was at it I also made 2 more bibs for Eric. Now to get those project bag samples done. The work in the sewing room is part of my deep cleaning effort. Finish all work in progress that can be made relevant or get rid of it.

Now if someone can just get Eric to go to sleep at a reasonable hour. Sleep through the night and not wake up before the sun I would have it made.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Busy As Usual

I has been a busy few days around here. This morning was laundry/cleaning followed by tinking about 8 wash cloths. The yarn will go into some cotton hats. I have a better chance of finding homes for hats than wash cloths. A few more hats got done between yesterday and today. They are getting more creative as I get into the the smaller bits of yarn. Did I mention that I found more yarn as I was cleaning on Friday? I thought I was just about done with cotton hats and ready to move on to wool and other fibers.

Even though I still have a little more than a week to get everything done by Thanksgiving  I am still feeling a bit rushed. Tomorrow I hope to wrap up the work in the craft room by finishing some bibs and making a few project bags for people who have asked for some. The most surprising thing about the craft room was that I did not just throw it all into bags and into the garage. I went through everything piece by piece and found a home for it or recycled it. I still find this level of organization a bit unnerving, but it is much easier to be creative. Who would have thought that a cleaner space lead to more creativity.

Then it will be time to take care of the fiber creep and maybe put some in the garage. I am really trying to get the fiber stash under control, but I can't seem to knit and spin as much as I would like too. This is a case where my mind is working faster than my hands.

Since I have another busy day planned for tomorrow, I know this because the to do list has already been written. I think I will call it a night.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Cleaner Might Be Better

This might be my other self talking, the neat well organized one that I swear is just a facade.  I spent almost the whole day in the craft room today.  Cleaning, organizing, finishing sewing projects and yes finding more yarn hidden away.  Don't tell John or Teri, but the more organized and neater the room became the easier I found it was to create and get things done.  I even have pictures of 2 of the projects I  completed from start to finish today.  The pattern will be posted once I am not writing on my iPod.  

It seems that it might not be the power supply on the computer after all.  It looks like there are a couple of bad transformers on the mother board.  This I know is a very bad thing.  You will know when things get fixed, yes I will be on the computer more. 

The only other thing that got done today was a very short field trip that Eric and I took.  We made our yearly pilgrimage to Tucson's version of the Mayflower.  It is an event sponsored by our local radio station MIX-FM 94.9 along with Tucson Electric Power who double all the cash donations, the Mayflower Moving and Storage Company who donate the use of a moving van to stack and transport the food to the Tucson Community Food Bank.  It was so nice that they remembered Eric from years past and knew just what to do.  

Well it is time to finish making dinner.  TTFN.  

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


Today was all about getting odds and ends done.  Chores that had been on the back burn to long. A scarf that only needed 10 more rows knit was completed.  2 more hats were finished and a 3rd hat cast on.  

I got yesterday's spinning plied and started some BFL from Into the Whirled on the Louet.  I am trying out a new to me technique to make the color ways longer.  This yarn will be a single ply and the yarn is all for me.  Notice how thin the  yarn i, it will be perfect for a shawl. See the wide color ways too. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Odd Day

Today was really on odd day for me. It started off early and well. By 8 am I had the dishwasher, washing machine and Roomba running.  For some reason it went down hill from there.  

After breakfast things went into the blender and emerged all strange.  I encountered people driving down the wrong side of the road, I landed in the dirt to avoid being hit.  A Van Tran driver blocking the wheelchair ramp when I was half way down with Eric in his chair.  I had to back him up and find another ramp. RTA what's up with the rude drivers lately? Then the idiot who parked right next to the ramp door in such away that I could not deploy the ramp. She parked about 6" from the door, ideally i need between 6 to 8 feet to deploy the ramp. In my defense all the handicapped spaces were taken so I parked at the back of the lot taking what I thought was 2 spaces and pushed Eric across the parking lot into the store. My reward for all this was be flipped off and glared at.  Including the gal who blocked the ramp. 

My plan is to go to sleep and have a better day tomorrow.  Who's with. Me?

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Busy as a Mommy

It has been a very busy and productive weekend around here. Eric managed to fill the laundry room knee high with laundry 2 days in a row.  I did 9 loads of laundry over 2 days and very little belonged to anyone but Eric.  

Elsewhere around the house I managed to do the following:  Fill the huge roll out recycle bin to with in 2 inches of the top. Finish and get a taker for 4 dog pillows. Repair 1 bib for Eric.  Tried a new spinning ratio on the Louet spinning wheel, I did not think it was possible to get yarn of this weight, yeah. Make a major dent in cleaning the guest room for thanksgiving company.  In case you did not know it, the craft room and guest room are one in the same.  We just pull down the Murphy bed when we have company.  Finished 3 more charity hats.  Last but not least start my to do list for Monday.  If I start now or run all day tomorrow I might finish half of the list.  

I would like to thank all of our Veterans for making this crazy life of mine possible. You are some of the most caring and helpful people around.  

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Power Issues

I woke up this morning to find a solid yellow light on the computer.  As per my in house engineering fellow aka my husband, we have a power supply problem.  We have ordered the part and it will be installed upon delivery of the part. So until then all my blog post and anything computer related will happen from my Ipod.  Since I have not figured out how to share this on Facebook my simple request is that you share this on Facebook and tag me in the post so I can share with everyone else.  

I am also have a low energy day.  Too bad I can not be fixed with a new power supply.  Two naps later and I am begining to feel better. I don't expect to get more than dinner cooked and a little knitting done today.  

So basically nothing much is happening here today. Also I am including a picture of the sick computer.  The power supply is on the lower left I think.  It's the shiny part. 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

On a Roll

Today was one of those truly exceptional days. I was not an object in motion but still managed to get a lot of things finished,  starting with scrubbing the stove top. I decided to opt out of scrubbing the inserts by hand and instead used the dishwasher. I did manage to get all 4 loads of laundry washed and all but 1 is complete. Don't worry I think Eric has made at least one load for tomorrow.

On the craft front I finished knitting 2 hats, sewing 3 pillows for Eric, found the vest and buttons that made it into the sewing room so long ago that I can not remember when it hit the repair basket. My hands were a little to stiff to sew the buttons on tonight.

John and I went out for some couple time and I think we were mistaken for snow birds. We also made it to the grocery store. John made a lovely salad for dinner and even cleaned up afterward.

I think that I am falling asleep and Eric sounds quiet so I think I will call it a very early night.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013


Exhaustion has set in. I spent most of my day sleeping. My 2 major accomplishments of the day were voting and finishing 1 hat.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Being Productive

I seem to be in a finishing mood today. I started out the day by crocheting the edging on 2 wash cloths. They were going to be for a fundraiser that fell through. Once the fund raiser fell though I put them on the back burner. So they are now done so I need to figure out what I will do with them.  Any thoughts besides keeping them?

Because the next batch of hats is going to stay local, I gathered up some bits and pieces of cotton yarn and started another batch of 30 hats. I will also make some wool hats too. I think the pattern is so simple it is a little additive. One hat got completed from start to finish and the next hat is 2 inches in.

I did have John put one box of yarn into the garage. I hope to get enough knitting done to bring it in sometime around January. This requires that I actually do some knitting for myself and get caught up on pretty things that I want to wear.

I was on the tired side today so not much housework got done. I see the next big push out of the craft room is going to be pillows. I will make both positioning pillows for Eric's bed, his day program and some dog pillows. This should take out about 1/3 of the clutter.

Well it does seem to be about time to call it a day so please take the time to enjoy your families.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

I Cheated

The challenge for knitting guild was suppose to be to knit one hat a day for 30 days. The challenge started October 17th. I just finished hat number 30 an hour ago on November 3rd. So I did the challenge in just 18 days. This is not earth shattering cheating by any means. With as crazy as this house gets sometimes, I just wanted to make sure that all 30 hats were done on time.

These hats are going to a place in Pinal County called Children's Closet. Their goal is to provide clothing for children so that they have clothing and shoes to go to school. Before this program started children in some areas frequently missed school days because it was not their turn to get to wear the 1 set of clothes or shoes that the family had for school that day. Winter clothing was not part of the outfit either.  I know that this effort will barely put a dent in the problem, but at least 30 little
 heads will be a little warmer this winter.

So here is the picture of all 30 hats. Each hat was 32 rows on size 13 knitting needles. So you will notice that the counter will go up by 960 rows on The one million row challenge. Yes this is double dipping but I am sure it will be OK.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

All About Fiber Part 2

Here is the picture of all that I dyed for my first dyeing experience. It looks pretty good in my very humble opinion. let me know if you want to see pictures of the hand combed top.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Finishing off the Week

It has been very busy around here. On Thursday I did try to take some time off. Some of it was good like learning a new way to place the freshly spun yarn on a bobbin to get it much neater. I like bringing my wheel and just sitting around and spinning with other people. I learn so much about spinning and life. Lunch with everyone was nice too.

On the other hand I was deeply disappointed with a craft room appliance manufacturer. I got to meet the president of the company. I asked why my first service could not be performed on the machine without additional cost to me. After all the first service was included in the sales price. When I went in for the first service they were long gone. They said that the company that they were leasing space was responsible and you can guess what the lease holder said.  For the president of a consumer driven industry he sure does not understand the average consumer or really care if they receive good service after the sale. His regional sales manager was not much better, since I did not drink the current rah rah drink and disagreed with her I was in her eyes an awful person. She felt it was good business to yell at a consumer and to try to publicly shame me. Like that is ever going to work on me.  Also when is it a consumers responsibility to keep track of the inner workings of a company or know their policy manual inside out, really!!!  Also to tell someone that even though you bought the appliance less then 10 miles from home and they closed a company branch, in their opinion it was not unreasonable to ask a consumer to drive 100 or 200 miles to get the appliance serviced.  Do they realize that that would take 2 full days out of a busy life that I do not have. I will continue to use the appliance but no way in HE Double Tooth Picks would I ever buy another appliance from this company*.

Today was filled with more knitting and friends. I got a good start on the laundry, I should only have 2 loads to wash tomorrow, we all know that depends on Eric. I got about 4 pounds of fiber washed. The fiber was dirtier than I expected so it took longer to wash and did not manage to get it all finished today. I still have more in the garage to wash. I did not realize how much work it would be  on my hands to wash the fiber.

On the hat front number 27 is done. Hat number 28 is on the needles and after that there are only 2 to go. So it is time to call it a night even though I should be exhausted my body seems out of sync and I am not in the least bit tired.

*It is the policy of this blog not to publicly shame bad companies. There are lots of people that do that. So that is why you will not see the name of the small appliance manufacturer in the blog. Conversely if they are products or companies I just love and think you should give them a try like my Kitchen Aid K5-A mixer which I think everyone should have one ( yes mine is from the late 1970's). Or even my Le Creuset cookware (My first piece was bought from the Betty Crocker Catalog back in the mid 1980's) everyone should have at least one every day piece for cooking.  Even household cleaners like Scrubbing Bubbles, great for the bathroom tile in Eric's bathroom.