My 1 Million Row Challenge

Friday, February 28, 2014

Good verses Bad

Eric has been sick for a few days. The hours have been very long. I am tired and sore. Now my delimia. A lot of the yarn producers and clubs are now listing there spring clubs.  

To be good I know I have about 50 projects all ready to be knit. I have lots of fiber ready to be carded and spun. I also have lots of braids to spin. I have lots of other yarn that needs to be knit too. So I should not sign up for any new clubs. 

To be self indulgent I would love to sign up for a couple of clubs.  After all they are soft and squishy. I have had a really bad couple of days. Yarn diets are blah.  

To be good I will not order any. After all I am enjoying less clutter in the house.  As much as I hate to admit it. Too much yarn and fluff can lead to a lot of clutter. 

To be bad I would go ahead and order a couple of clubs.  After all I got over 100 hand knit items out the door last year. 

To be good I should knit up at least another 100 projects this year.  I should shrink my yarn and fiber stash by at least 20 if not 50% more.  

Well I hope I can stay on the right side of the equation, good or bad. Time will tell. 

Thursday, February 27, 2014

More of the Same

Eric is still sick and shared.  This has left me the only one fully standing.  I have hit exhaustion.  Eric will also be home tomorrow too. So I will be home too. 

I spent the day doing laundry, taking care of Eric and working on making more earrings for the up coming fund raiser. I decided to skip cleaning, I only have so much energy. 

So tomorrow will be much the same as today, with the exception that it might rain Friday.  

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Hump Day

It has been a long but productive day around here dispite everything that the day threw at us. At 4 am I woke up with a headache. By the time I had breakfast and medicine at 4:30 am Eric started the wild eyrping.  At 10:30 am the crew came to install the new pool pump and filter. I was also ready for lunch.  By 11:00 am Eric decided a fever should be part of our day. Then his asthma kicked in too. 

So while all of this was going on, John printed some cards for me. I bagged and priced all the earrings I made Sunday.  I sorted out a pound of glass beads. Finished 2 dog pillows. Repaired 1 shirt and reinforced a few seams. Started to assemble the supplies to 6 toddler bibs. Worked on 2 different knitting projects, I keep 1 in Eric's room and 1 in the den. Did 5 loads of laundry and all but the load that is drying now are put away. 

When you see John tell him you heard how wonderful he was today. He made lunch and dinner.  He also found some nap time for me. 

For some reason which is beyond me I did not find the time to do the cleaning or making earrings with Eric's friends that I had planned to do.  Yet here it is 10 pm I know I had a full day, but did not accomplish much. 

Monday, February 24, 2014

A Busy Day

Eric had a rough night followed by a packed day for me today.  I spent 2 1/2 hours making earrings for Eric's day program fundraiser on March 11.  Almost all Eric's friends have made at least 1 pair. So now the staff is starting to make some too.  They put together the beads and I do the assembly. 

I restarted the green shawl for the 3rd te tonight. I cast on all 280 stitches and knit the first 3 rows.  I really hope that the 3rd time is the charm.  Although with the days hitting the mid 80's already it might be next fall before I get to wear it.  I am beginning to wonder if we will have ice break in April or May this year. 

Another Day at Home

Eric decided very early today that he did not want to leave the house. So we caught up on things like the rose parade and a few situation comedy's. I also worked on making some earrings for the next fundraiser for Eric's day program. Nothing fancy this is the $5 to &10 crowd.  I will make a couple of dozen more and call it quits on those. 

Today Eric needed lots of attention so I spent most of the day just trying to keep him happy. The one accomplishment that he seems very happy with is that he made 4 loads of laundry all by himself. I did not even get to the towels or our clothes, but I can work on that tomorrow. 

I noticed this evening that my pants were starting to get a bit uncomfortable.  They are riding about an inch above where they are suppose to be.  When I lowered them to where they we're suppose to be they just looked all droopy.  I guess this means that in a few more months it will be time to shop my closet again and then hit the sale rack. 

Well Eric is fianally asleep so it's time to call it a night. 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

All Tinked

The Shawl is all tinked and I will cast it on again tomorrow.  I feel sad that it had to be tinked, but there were just so many errors and some were quite visible. As I started taking the stitches out one by one all of a sudden I had 2 strands of yarn and then 3. I had found places where I had turned in mid row by mistake. This time I will go a little slower and pay a little more attention when I pick up the knitting after a break. Since this will be the 3rd time knitting the same pattern I am sure that it will come out just right. I am also quite certain that Teri and John would have never made the silly mistakes that I made in knitting this shawl the first 2 times.

I had made some plans for fun things for Eric and I to do today. Eric had other plans. Eric was up and down almost all of last night and into this morning. He finally settled in at around 4:30 am. He slept until 7:30 and was up for a whole 2 hours before he decided to go back to bed for the day. So needless to say we were at home all day. I was too tired to accomplish much and managed to grab a nap when Eric took one. I will have to wait and see what my dear darling son wants to do tomorrow. I hope we get out for at least a little while.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Lace Knitting

I have decided that I am not very good at lace. I really screwed up the the set up row of lace and am just now on row 3 finding all of my mistakes. I don't want to rip out about 1,000 stitches and redo it. That being said I want my first lace project to look good even if it just 10 rows of edging. Johns vote is to fudge row 3 so that the last 7 rows of lace look good, with the theory that not many people will notice or know the difference. It would also take me at least 1 if not 2 nights of knitting to get back to the beginning of the lace as I did not put in a life line. Then another 2 days to get back to where I am now. Does anyone else want to weigh in on the subject? If so just leave a comment.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Being Creative Without Spending Money

My challenge this month for knitting guild was to come up with a very nice gift for our speaker without spending any money. To that end I cut up 2 pairs of worn out jeans, one from each of my kids. I then went on a fabric hunt through my quilting material to find larger scrapes of fabric that were the right color and size.  Then the pinning and sewing commenced. 

I have created 8 unique project bags for knitting, spinning or crochet projects. I also found 6 other larger pieces of fabric that could stand alone and made them into project bags too. 

Then it was off to the ribbon box to find the right ribbon or cording to finish the bags off. So after 2 days of sewing I have 13 bags for the speaker to choose from without spending any money. The rest will be sold off on a first come first serve basis. The project bags are all one of a kind. No 2 are exactly alike.  I like the fact that I could be creative with the bags. They are more artistry than production line ones too. 

The sad news from this is that I did not make a dent in my fabric stash. I only finished 1 spool of cording and only bits of ribbon. No spools of thread got finished either. I will have to work on that stash getting smaller too. 

Yes I know that 6 + 8 = 14, but I decided to keep one of the bags for myself. Here is a picture of mine at the top of the post. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Another Day and the SevOld Cold

This cold still has me in its grips. I cancelled most of my day and slept. The only things that got accomplished were some knitting in which I made it through the first row of lace. I placed a stitch marker every 14 stitches, which is the pattern repeat.  

I also now know where all my pants are. They are hanging on the cloths line drying.  I will never understand how I can keep up with Eric's laundry, but fall so behind on my own. 

Now I just have to figure out how to sleep so I won't be coughing all night. Here is hoping for a better day tomorrow.  I still have 8 more project bags to sew before Thursday. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Colds

It seems that since John retired last year my body has decided that it is really OK to get every cold that comes my way. Not only that, my body is giving the colds time to linger. If I sleep through driving time John graciously picks up my slack. If this is part of retirement, this part is for the birds. I wonder if it has something to do with getting more sleep and eating better? Perhaps actually having time to get sick. I have had at least a dozen colds since John retired.

Yes I have the latest cold that is going around, it is hang around my head and neck. It has zapped me of all my energy. Not that I have time for it right now. I should be working on making project bags,making earrings, knitting, spinning and weaving.

Well I think I will try to make some project bags today. It is time to go get crafty.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Tomorrow Will be Better

Today I got 2 more crowns placed. As usual after a dental appointment I feel a bit out of it.  A mere 10 hours after the appointment I am just beginning to feel human. I did tell the dentist that I was taking a month off before the last 2 crowns. 

After the dental appointment I went to Sunflower market and was truly disappointed that they had decided to discontinue my favorite brand of peanut butter cups. If you have ever had the Justin's dark chocolate peanut butter cups you know exactly what I mean. Sunflower was the only place I knew of in Tucson that carried them.  On top of that they decided that prime shopping time for dinner was the perfect time to have all the shelfs stocked. Between all the stocking carts and staff blocking the aisles. Dodging stockers and people trying to make it a quick and coming from the dentist it was not a pleasant trip.  I don't think I will be going back there any time in the near future. I go shopping to unwind and escape, not to battle it out for space to stand or walk. 

The only other things that got done were knitting and spinning.  I am exhausted so I am going to cut this blog post short tonight. 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Hump Day

It was a very busy day today despite the fact that my allergies kept me up part of the night.  More earrings were made with the Taglit Young Adults. I barely kept up with their design work. Again some of the designs were increadable.  

I got 20 more rows done on a shawl that I started 4 years ago.  It is a push on wether I will have enough yarn, but I will come up with something in case I don't.  The joke at the end of the evening was its time to put this project away, because I am coming close to finishing it. 

Well I have another busy day planned for tomorrow so I am going to call it a night. 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Creative Spirit

I have been working with some fabulous jewelry designers from the Taglit Group at the Tucson JCC. They get to rummage through some of my beads and designing earrings which I then put together for them. They are coming up with some incredible designs that I would not even have considered. I usually try to keep my earring systematical. They are going asymmetrical and in all different ways because they have not learned the rules. I think that after working with these creative young people I will try to throw some of the rules out the window too. In the past few weeks most have also been shown the basics of weaving and are busy making Mug Rugs. Over the summer they were busy making dog toys and greeting cards.

This is all in preparation for our big spring bake sale, car wash and craft sale. This will all happen on March 11, 2014 in front of the Tucson JCC starting at 8 am. and running until 3 pm. The money raised will cover projects not covered by state funding or grants. It also show the young adults from the Taglit Special Needs  Program for Young Adults that they can create things that other people had not thought possible from them.

So I would like to urge everyone to stop by with a dirty car to be washed. A shopping list of gifts to buy for people and pets and room for some bake sale goodies. I might even have a few hand crafted items available with the total purchase price of my items going to the Taglit Program.

If you can't stop by, but would still like to help this great group of young adults with special needs just follow the links and make a donation. For cash donations follow this link and indicate Inclusion on your donation form. If you can make an in-kind donation follow this link to Wish List. If you would like to order some Greeting Cards that are sold in packages of five, please use the link.

I would like to thank you in advance for your support. This means a lot to Eric and his friends.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

I am Not Superwoman Today

I know that I should not be feeling like I had the most un-productive day in the history of man. After all I got 3 loads of laundry done, cut my coupons and made a list,went grocery shopping, made 11 new  pairs of earrings, gathered my supplies for tomorrow, picked up a little, helped John watch a friends son. Took care of Eric. That sounds pretty busy to me.

What I did not get done was my walk, any sewing, knitting or spinning, have all flat surfaces cleaned off.  Maybe I am not feeling like much of a superwoman today. I did not get my other shopping or errands done. I am beginning to wonder whether I have un-real expectations of what I can accomplish in any given day,

While I am pondering this I think I will go clean some more.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Getting Crafty

I took Eric to The Lego Movie today. It was a cute movie although I would not recommend it for the visually impaired. There are just to many booms and unpredictable loud noises. My hand is still a bit sore from all the gripping Eric did almost 12 hours later. 

I also got 19 pairs of earrings done for the mid March fund raiser that Eric's Taglit group is doing. I would have made more but I was loosing my natural light. I find that natural light is better for me when I make jewelry. 

Tomorrow I plan on making more jewelry plus deciding what supplies to take on Monday when some of Eric's friends get a chance to design some of their own pieces. 

It has been a busy day and tomorrow looks a little fuller.  So I am calling it a night. 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

A Very Slow Day

Today was not the most productive day. In fact it was a 2 nap day. The only things I accomplished were doing the finishing work on 2 bags full of knitting while Eric did his afternoon breathing treatment. Knit 6 rows on my new shawl. In my defense it is a top down shawl wider at the top.  I only managed to walk 3.5 miles today, I think the cold weather did me in. The 50's is a little cold for me to be outside excersizeing even if I am bundled up. 

I even managed to sleep through my afternoon spinning group.  So no spinning got done today. 

The picture is of the knitting that got cleaned up today. I will update the row counter tommrow.  I am much to tired to write more. 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Finished Work

Below is a picture of the mittens that I knit for myself.  They are the Paradise Valley Fingerless Mittens by Mountain Colors inc. They add 102  rows to the 1 million row challenge. Sorry about the sideways photos. I am in the middle of a shawl, hat and a few scarfs, pictures will be forth coming when they are finished.

I am also trying to walk between 10,000 and 20,000 steps per day. So if you would like to help me in this endeavor just let me know when you can join me on a walk. As of 6:00 pm MST I have 10,512 steps so far today, this is a good first day.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Changing Directions

I think it is time for me to change directions. After what seems like years of knitting in the range of 100 to 200 items a year for charity, I need to knit some things for me. I have at least 3 sweaters that I need to finish or start. I have shawls, mittens and accessories that I would like to have. I have the yarn and the patterns lined up. I am thinking some where in the 50 project range. I have a blanket for Teri that is 2/3's done that I started in her first year of law school. I want to make John a new quilt. I have fluff that I want to spin. I want to work on weaving. I want to design more patterns. I need to exercise more.

Eric's life has become more unpredictable. He is requiring more care on our part. I feel stressed out that he is not up to going on many outings. That use to be a big part of our lives.  He just does not have the energy.  I feel that I am spending my life in catch up mode. I need to take time for me. It is time for a change.

As Eric's life becomes more unpredictable I am having a harder time being as artistic as I would like. I can't do as many have suggested just to block off regular time each day to create. I never know when I am going to be up until all hours with Eric. I never know how many days it will take Eric or I to recoup, or how many days he will be at his day program. I always wonder if  I can recoup my energy before Eric gets the next cold. Yes, we always know it is just a matter of time before the next cold hits.

This does not mean that I will stop working on charity projects. This just means that it will no longer be my main focus. I want to spend more time creating. So a few times a week I hope just to post pictures of my latest projects. I am hoping that by taking some of the pressure off myself to make the world a better place at all cost, I will instead try to make my little corner of the world a better place.

So the new journey begins.....