Monday, January 2, 2017

The beginnings of the list

The idea is to make a list of unfinished projects and add to it while at the same time crossing things off. I had hoped to put some pictures of half finished projects here but I have become one of those "doesn't own a computer" people in the last few years. I just use my phone for everything after all! Once I figure it out, those will go up too.

Still, let's get the list started anyway. In no particular order:

  1. Rose Log Cabin quilt
  2. 1600 scrap quilt
  3. Pair of knitted mittens
  4. Still unpainted letter stains in the bedroom
  5. Rainbow Plus quilt
  6. February Lady sweater
  7. Hang a laundry pole in the craft room
  8. Properly stack and store the many many basement books
  9. Sift through out of date paper filings
  10. Better organization system for my fabric
  11. Ditto for my yarn
  12. Ditto for the game box closet
  13. Ditto for the garage
  14. Mulch around the deck
  15. Mulch around the fence
  16. Mulch around the holly bushes
  17. Plant the garlic in spring
  18. Flip the compost in Spring
  19. Flip it again in Fall
  20. Fill up the empty wall space in the main room
  21. Downsize the unused kitchen items
  22. Install new mailbox
And that's just what I could think of off the top of my head! I plan on taking a walk around my property and adding to that list fairly frequently. I'm looking forward to really making a difference in my home and my productivity this year.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Cool!! So Retro!!

To be honest I wasn't sure if blogger still actually worked. It seems like Wordpress was the big thing for a while and now it's something else again? I'm not even sure.

Anyway, I think the last post was something like 3 or 4 years ago! It's almost New Years 2017 and I'd like to record a couple of my resolutions just as a way of keeping on track.

Resolution the first: Quit being such an untidy brat by putting things back where they go as soon as I'm done using them. I have a bad habit of leaving things wherever I most recently used them. Mostly craft things like scissors and half finished projects. But also hair ties and books.

Resolution the second: Quit being such a lazy brat and fetch things on my own instead of imploring my husband to do them for me. It's always a glass of water. It's really really always always a glass of water. I can get water on my own and he's not my cabana boy.

Resolution the third and most interesting: Finish Once a Week! Remember me mentioning those half finished projects? I think every knitter crocheter quilter crafter has had a nasty bout of Startitis in their time. I never bothered getting over mine. Therefore I will begin a checklist and gradually add things to it. And more importantly finish at least one thing on it per week. Furthermore, I will not add quick and easy projects for the sake of having something insubstantial to cross off.

That being said, if I'm super inspired, I'll definitely start a new project and add it to the list.

And frogging is allowed! If I find an old abandoned project I'm not in love with, it gets frogged and removed from the list entirely. For non-knitters that means ripping (rip it, rip it) a project apart. Frogging something I never plan on finishing  does not count as finishing for the terms of the once a week goal.

Well then, I'm going to get started on that big old list!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

On Engagement, Getting Married, and Being Married

Today is our anniversary.  It's the very first anniversary of our marriage and it's very special.  Naturally, I feel the need to reflect.

While this is our first wedded anniversary, it's also the 7th anniversary of our moving in together and essentially making ourselves into our own family.  I think we both felt pressure from each of our families to get on with it and tie the knot as each year flew by.  What took us so long?  I don't really know.  Probably there were lots of silly things that matter so little now that I don't even remember them.  I remember money was an issue for a while.  I remember government defiance was in there somewhere.  At some point we both came to the realization that none of those little things mattered.  We love each other and were committed to each other and although it was already permanent internally, getting engaged was a banner to display it.

Kevin and I made some unusual choices when it came to our wedding.  Many of them weren't even made by us because we allowed someone else to make the choices.  I'm not sure I'll ever understand the premise of Bridezillas or Say Yes to the Dress because I never grew up believing that a wedding day was quite as crucial as all that.  Growing up in a very large extended family and being the first in a generation with a wide gap preceding, I felt like I was at a wedding two or three times a year.  I probably was for all I remember.  I was also a flower girl for at least two.  Not only that, growing up Roman Catholic, every event was accompanied by a full service and having a family that attended every Sunday, as a younger child I tended to think of a wedding ceremony as just another day at church.  It's a shame too because now as an adult, I want to remember those days for how special they were for the couple and for the family including me, but the memories are since lost in the fog of familiarity of setting.

By stark contrast, Kevin and I had our ceremony in my parents' backyard.  No service, only one witness each, performed by the mayor, and the entire thing lasted only 10 minutes.  I'm glad we did what we did.  Perhaps the preparations were an even greater contrast.  I never shopped for my dress.  I gave my mother a vague idea of what I wanted and she literally found separates at Sears and that was plenty good enough for me.  I never saw the reception venue.  It didn't really matter to me as long as the reception was fairly small (since neither Kevin nor I enjoy being in a crowd) and all our immediate family members were there.  There was no DJ and no dancing (except for when we were forced for the sake of a couple photos) because that's just not our style.  It was low-budget, and simple, and not at all showy, and easily the most memorable wedding I've ever been to, and I'm not just saying that because it was my own.  It was different and totally special for lack of frills. 

As for being married?  I think we were already there when we first moved in together.  After coming home from our outrageously amazing honeymoon in Disney World, it was business as usual.  Although it took some getting used to, I'm finally in the habit of calling Kevin "husband" and it's a title that utterly suits him.  I'm also very amused each time he refers to me as "my wife" when speaking to someone over the phone or introducing me.  Do I regret not doing it sooner?  Certainly not.  Everything happens in its own time.  I'm just very happy that the time came and there is time yet to look forward to.  Sappy sappy sappy.... but true.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

First World Needs

I need a grill.  I really really need a grill.

Now that it's summer, the traditional cook outside season, I feel the primal urge to stoke a fire and smell like smoke while I chew on a hunk of meat.

Last year, Kevin and I bought a small camping grill for the sake of having the odd hot dog.  Neither of us had ever cooked over fire before and we didn't do it very often. Perhaps we were intimidated by the thought of learning without guidance.  Perhaps we felt inconvenienced by the small cooking space. Perhaps we weren't convinced that the cleanup was worth the reward.

In any case, that's all behind us now.  I need to grill.  I want to cook everything over fire.  Everything tastes so much better and in reality there is so much less fussing. Want some chicken? Salt or marinade it and put it on the grill.  Pork chops and tenderloin? Same thing.  Steak? Same thing. Want some corn? Don't even shuck it, just put it on the grill.  I mean, shoot, you don't even have to monitor it half the time.  As a lazy cook, this appeals to me in the extreme.

Now that we have fully embraced this method of cooking, we desperately need to upgrade from tiny little camping grill to a nice normal sized kettle grill.  The camp grill is propane, but I feel confident that we can make the transition to charcoal.

What's next on the menu? Maybe a kabob for Kevin and some shrimp for me.  Is it weird to have a taste for a thick plank of grilled bologna? Nah.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Dearly Departed at Cassidy Theatre

I am SO glad I tried out for Funny Girl early in the year.  It was so fun to be a part of a group other than my co-workers and still end up accomplishing something.  It was also incredibly refreshing to have some of the good kind of stress, the kind that leaves you invigorated instead of drained.  So I tried out for another show!

From the Cassidy Theatre Website: "In the Baptist backwoods of the Bible Belt, the beleaguered Turpin family proves that living and dying in the South are seldom tidy and always hilarious. Despite their earnest efforts to pull themselves together for their father's funeral, the Turpin's other problems keep overshadowing the solemn occasion."

I will be playing the nearly mute, but very bold, role of Delightful, the youngest Turpin.  Come check it out!  It's hilarious enough that even our rehearsals are boisterous!  And besides, who couldn't love a dysfunctional bunch of hillbillies?  I mean, that's why everyone keeps watching Duck Dynasty and Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, right?

Fridays and Saturdays at 8 and Sundays at 3, it'll be playing from April 12th through the 28th.

Oh darn. I logged on as Kevin again.  How silly of me ;)

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Oh... My... God, a BUD!

UPDATE! I am freaking out. I feel like I need to run around a show everyone constantly, but I'll try and be satisfied by telling the internet and hoping someone comes and shares in my joy. This very tulip bud is the same one from the last blog post.  I can't hardly believe it.  It was nothing but green before and now suddenly, BAM! Pink.  It's a lovely rosy pink like the kind Cover Girl advertises in their lipstick line.

I don't know what the rest of the bulbs will look like, but Kevin and I did find time this afternoon to plant a bunch of them in an oval in the front yard. We'd left a big pile of leaves from fall on the lawn to smother the grass in that area.  It's not all completely composted yet.  I figured it would take more than just one season anyway.  With proper weeding and mulching, I'm betting we can finish it off with some rocks or a mini fence border and have a nice little bed over the next couple years.

We also had a big bag of daffodil bulbs which we planted in a cluster by the neighbor's fence along with a few leftover tulips.  I hope very much that they have time to bloom this season!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Black Thumb Be Gone!

I think this is it.  I think this is the year I'm finally going to change my thumb from black to green.  Those that know Kevin and me, know that this is the beginning of the second year living in his Grandpa's house.  Grandpa has graciously given us free range of the yard since he never goes out there or uses it at all. Last year we got settled and dreamed about digging around in the back yard. We walked around the perimeter.  We tried to pay attention to where the light falls throughout the year.  We were even surprised with a bounty of volunteer hardneck garlic! (The scapes were delicious!)

This year, we've still got those big dreams, but now we sort of have a haphazard plan to get a modest harvest and our fingers crossed to start prettying up the place a bit.

I can't lie.  I've been collecting seed packets all year long.  They tempt me so readily.  Seeds are surprisingly cheap and at the end of the season the price plummets even more.  According to the various books I've been reading, they'll still be viable for a couple more years if I store them properly. 
Ignore the prices in the corner.  Everything in this picture I got for 20 cents a pack or less at the end of last season.  Sure, some of the seeds will die, but when has anyone ever gotten every single seed from a packet to sprout?  On top of that, what home gardener could ever have use for as many plants that would grow from the hundreds of seeds that are in a single packet?  I for one don't anticipate needing 200 brussel sprout plants this season or even in my whole lifetime.

I know it's way to early to start planting veggies outside, but thanks to a lovely Christmas gift, I've got a windowsill full of herbs. 

That's Cilantro on the left.  Dill is still seeds under the plastic bag, and little bit of chives in the center.

If you're wondering why my hopes are so high, let me just say this.  That little bonsai tree second from the right almost died while Kevin and I were away on our honeymoon.  I took a pair of scissors, cut off a bunch of dead bits, watered thoroughly, and miraculously it sprang back to life!  It just needed a little attention. 

And speaking of our honeymoon, that bulb being forced on the far right was a wedding present from my Aunt and Uncle Liz and Terry.  I've never forced a bulb before and I had no idea how it was done.  I just saw a picture of a bulb at the top of a bottle in a magazine.  I found the milk bottle at a thrift store for a dollar, pulled the bulb from the crisper drawer of the fridge (I didn't have time to plant them last fall before the snow started falling), and set it at the top.  A few days later, the spike appeared!  I got so excited I might have gone a little overboard with my other seed starting.

What can I say? Cabin fever washed over me at the sight of the herbs and tulip bulb! At the top left to right is basil, curly parsley, sweet marjoram, jalapenos, and sweet peppers.  At the bottom is cosmos flowers, kohlrabi, broccoli, and cauliflower.  I've read that those last three are cool weather crops which can stand a light freeze.  With a little protection in the form of some garden cloches, I'm feeling confident that I can get those little guys out in the dirt.  Of course I'll have to start hardening them off starting today.  I hope they make it.  They're probably my three favorite vegetables.

I've also got some beefsteak and cherry tomatoes in a big clear plastic tub in another room. They might survive if I pot them up.  (Note to self: Buy potting mix.)

Oh! And I also started a garden diary.  I've been keeping track of how long it takes for each seed to germinate, the temperatures everyday (and I might even end up making a year in temperatures scarf since I'll have the data), and wrote in important dates ahead of time including the predicted first and last frost dates of the year and about when I should be able to harvest that garlic I planted last year.

I don't anticipate being able to feed us off of the little backyard garden.  Our soil isn't so good yet, nor do I have the kind of experience for that, but I know I'll have a good time getting outdoors and enjoying nature this year. If I should pluck a tomato or cut a broccoli head, so much the better.