Thursday, January 22, 2015

Hooked on Beginings

9 New Crochet Projects
4 hats, 3 scarfs, 2 drawstring bags.  Just in the last week.  3 are not for me.

There are more fiber art beginnings since January 3rd which was Mom's birthday and the end of the holiday and family gifting occasions strung between late August and early January.  I cut myself loose.  A reward for finishing 57 fiber art tasks since September 1.

Besides these there were several experiments that didn't pan out, two smallish needlepoint projects and some crochet bookmarks.

It's been fun but I need to settle down soon and put some focus back on finishing things.

If I just finished all the bookmarks on the hook I could maintain last year's motto of finishing more things than I start through the month of January 2015.

Bookmarks used to be a one-sitting project.  Once I could crochet over ten of them in a single day.  Now I have over a dozen on the hook.  Some of them for over two years.

I think what happened is that as I began adding larger projects the bookmarks got classified as 'the portable projects' and don't get attention when I'm at home.  They end up languishing in pockets and purses from previous outings and not quick to lay hands on when leaving the house again so I grab a new ball of thread and start a new one for that next car ride or waiting room.


Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Fiber Art WIP

This is the scope of the project I've set myself to catalog all my fiber art WIP, get photos of their current state and note relevant data--percent done, thread brand and color, pattern, hook size, what's left to do, what materials need buying before it can be finished etc...

And to think I've started another half dozen since Sunday...

And that's not all

That's still not all...

Nope.  Not even. 

There's more in drawers and boxes of various sizes.

Plus many of those bags and boxes in the shots have multiple projects in them.


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Origins -- The Movie -- A Review

Origins -- the Movie
Our Roots. Our Planet. Our Future
I just watched this as part of my personal campaign for taking back control of my health--both physical and mental.  In my case they were preaching to the converted as I've already been convinced by experience that food is medicine (or poison) for its nothing but chemical reactions. Whatever chemicals you put in the mix determine the wellness level of the organism.

Tho they did not surprise me with their premise, I did learn much regarding the role our DNA plays in our ability to metabolize the chemicals we introduce to the intricate ecosystem that is our bodies. This gave me a possible explanation for the quirky way my system reacts to certain foods and medicines and leads me to wonder just how much of my mood disorder issues might be alleviated if not cured by change of diet.

 I also learned more ways I can regain power of dietary options.  And maybe most important of all I was given a boost of hope.

Four years in the making, this documentary consults 24 experts in 19 countries in the fields of medicine, health, anthropology and ecology.  They explore the roots of our DNA and the ways in which it has not caught up with the modern world and thus is creating illness, infertility, and ecological and economic devastation.

But it is not just a doomsday alarm.  Rather it is a clarion call for concerted action on the part of groups and individuals.  They emphasize the power of our dollars as votes for change.  The point us in the direction of specific actions we can take in our own lives, homes, and communities to regain control over our health, diet, and our immediate environment.

For a short time they are providing a free viewing of this approximately hour and a half film.  Don't miss out.

As an added bonus it is full of beautiful photography of breathtaking landscapes that exudes love and respect for our planet.

Origins Movie Trailer


Monday, January 19, 2015

Wardrobe Malfunction

My Library and My Closet
My side of the bed in Mom's room is a never ending chore.  About once a month I get fed up and do a major re-organize that addresses whatever issues I was blaming the disorder on and I think 'This time I'll keep it this way!'

But no.

It occurs to me there are just some issues that can't be fixed by rearranging stuff.

One of them is the fact that during the day I can't see anything but dark shadows backlit by window light.

While the evenings are taken up by dinner and reading to Mom before she goes to bed.

So that leaves the weekends when Mom is at my brother's to address it.  Whether that means putting away the clean clothes laid willy-nilly during the week and those disarranged by rummaging for outfits or a complete reorganizing like it needs now.  Just one of a gazillion tasks that jostle for attention between Friday afternoon and Sunday evening.

The state it is in now is partly explained by my having unpacked the winter clothes from the big duffle that was supporting the boxes on the purple chair just before Christmas.  Not only is the duffle not plump enough to support the boxes I've not got around to packing up the summer clothes so there's more stuff to shuffle.

Another issue that can't be fixed by rearranging the stuff is the fact that 50% or more of it is too big for me now and needs to be purged...  All the 2x and 3x  and sizes 20 to 24 need to go or be altered.  And even certain cuts and styles of 1x and 18s.  Also the size 8.5 - 9 shoes.

But that's an issue that goes deeper than a simple organization task.  I'm emotionally attached to every item.  It's going to take more than a weekend to deal with that.

But if I did purge all that maybe I could have the purple chair back as a reading chair again.  Could that be motivation enough?


But iffy.


Sunday, January 18, 2015

Sunday Serenity

Bradley's Not Too Sure About This Thing
 Bradley joined in on my quiet afternoon of reading ebooks and organizing ebook files and metadata on three devices--Blaze, Nexus and Aspire.    He'd been nudging my hand holding the Blaze up to the Nexus camera, jostling my shots.  Then one of my alarms went off.

He backed off and crouched like he was guarding a mouse hole with a lion inside.

I also had to do some maintenance with the Blaze as it was screaming about low memory after I reinstalled Amazon and MoonReader Pro and several other aps that had been on the sd card that died a couple weeks ago, crashing the phone and taking to its grave the over 200 photos stored on it.  Along with the dozens of ebooks and half a dozen audio files.  And the aps.

Those were all just copies of files safe on other devices or in the cloud.  The original before edit photos taken with the Blaze had not been.  At least not by me.  I discovered later that most of them had been backed up by Google and/or Picasa but there were over a dozen missing--pictures of the bookmarks I gave my Aunt and cousin when they visited in October, a series of pictures taken as I repaired the hole in the afghan Mom crocheted as a teenager, some of the pics from the beach, some from the box sort project in the basement, some from my split chin, some from the run on the dike with my cousin's wife.

I had blog posts in progress waiting for me to edit the pictures and upload them.

The Entertainment Desktop
on My Blaze
As you can see I have six book aps and no games.  I find the screen too small to enjoy games.

My MoonReader Bookshelf
In the pic at top the Blaze is showing the Kindle bookshelf.  I found some of the memory I needed to allow backups again and a reinstall of Chrome by removing dozens (hundred+?) of books from the Kindle and GDrive 'keep on device' files which apparently aren't stored on the sd card.


Saturday, January 17, 2015

Winding Up to Wind Down

For this pic I have the corkboard balanced on the stool alone to reveal the balls of thread and skeins of yarn waiting to be wound.  I find winding them a very soothing activity which works well with storydreaming, praying, listening to audio books or watching videos.  Or thinking about WIP or future WIP.

Less than half of the yarn and thread in that box is visible as the box goes back nearly a foot more.  As soon as the pic was taken I moved the corkboard back in place and then there is only a 4x4 inch square in the left corner where the item(s) being wound are accessible.

That's where the bulk of my December order went to.  There is more yarn in a large bag under the card table and then there is the yarn I got on my birthday and the yarn I got on Mom's birthday...

So I have many hours of serene winding to do.

I love handling the thread and yarn.  It makes me happy.


Friday, January 16, 2015

Time and Space

The crafter's tote spread across my workstation

Bradley wants to help.
A shortage of time and space is still a factor in making progress on the crafter's tote that was supposed to have been my sister-in-law's Christmas gift in 2012.  Two years late!!

I really thought I was going to make it for Christmas 2014 when I finished the Mobius strip in late September.  But I ran into another engineering problem in November that took me several weeks to (maybe) solve.  The solution entailed shopping for supplies, including online which order did not arrive until ten days before Christmas.

I'd already set it aside to focus on the Christmas gifts I could get done for local family once it became obvious I could not get it in the mail in time to reach the Rogue Valley before Christmas.

Last summer I rearranged this room again (an endless project itself) to make room to set up the card table so I'd have room to spread the tote panels out to work on them and to assemble them with the Mobius strip into the bag.

But then I unpacked the rest of my craft and sewing supplies which were still in the boxes I'd packed when moving out of our trailer spring of 2013.  A necessity since all my holiday supplies where among them.  I'm still have trouble finding homes for everything without resorting to piling the card table high with whatever is not in use that moment.

The big order in December and the several craft shopping sprees between my birthday in November and Mom's birthday January 3rd added to the problem.


It's only when Mom spends the weekend with my brother's family in Portland that I can clear the card table by piling stuff on her side of the bed.  She leaves Friday afternoon and returns on Sunday evening.

That is also the only time I can work on the big sort and organize project in this room, the bedroom and down in the basement.  A project which competes for urgency with the tote as it's not only for making daily life easier while I'm here at Mom's but to make moving and setting up my own household easier when the time comes.

So its a tradeoff.

This weekend I'm working on the tote.  Which will mostly mean getting reacquainted with it after a month's hiatus.

The active project surface has been this corkboard set across the edge of a box and a stool.  Bradley knocked it off twice and I once.  All three times it was loaded and spilled thread, hooks, needles, pins, buttons, beads, ribbon, pattern pages, notes, threaders, thimbles, scissors, measuring tape....

...and whatever WIP(s) were on it.

The time I knocked it off the corner landed on my toe.

I solved the problem by giving up leg room to move the stool to the front right corner.

The corkboard is covered with microfiber pads for blocking projects off the hook.  The picture of the puppy and kitten is a laminated card I use when working with glue or tape.  The stack of candy boxes are trays containing small projects or materials and tools. There's another stack of larger trays behind that one.

The box under that end of the board used to contain materials, tools and small projects but it was a hassle getting into it so I stuffed it full of yarn and thread not on the hook which needs to be wound before use.  That's what's happening to that ball of yarn on the corner.


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