Category Archives: Cleaning

Finished Sock, On Deck redo, On the Needles Now, a Happy, Productive Visit

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Knitter’s Husband Marine Life Socks finished the other day.  They are approximately a size 13.  That’s a whole lotta sock.  Told Spencer while he was here for Thanksgiving that his feet are NOT allowed to grow any more.  It’s bad enough he’s at a size 12.

A WHOLE LOTTA sock…

Spencer’s SF Giant’s socks not happening anymore.  The yarn is splitty, the colors are NOT working out in the jumble and I do NOT like knitting them as the yarn has too much nylon and it does NOT flow over the needles.  Spencer has agreed about the colors and has picked a different yarn out of the stash.  Cherry Tree Hill’s “Middle Earth”.  Photos later.  Still keeping an eye out for the right yarn as I do want to make him some Giants socks.  Definitely needs to be self-striping 100% Merino – which is way out of my price range at the moment.  This is how far I went before I had to say “NO MORE” – not black/orange/white but brown/coral/white.

Going on the needles today as I watch Da Bears trounce the Vikings – socks for my partner in crime Antonella.  After slacking off for three days, they are FINALLY going on the needles – Claudia Hand Painted Yarns “Roasted Chilies”.  I have five more pairs to make after these.  FIVE.  Yeah, I should really get going.

 

Once Spence FINALLY got to my house, we had a simple Thanksgiving dinner of lasagna and a salad.  But first we had dessert.  We LOVE pumpkin pie in The Chaos so that had to be eaten first!

After we rested a bit after our mini-feast, we went through all the boxes he left in his room.  I made a special pile of them and we made quick work of going through it all.  We came across wonderful things that triggered many happy memories of his grandparents, both gone now.  Here we are in two of the many awesome hats from his hat collection.  Mom and Dad always sent him various hats for birthdays and holidays and hats were his souvenirs whenever anyone traveled.  Here, he wears the Davey Crockett ‘Coon hat his Papa Bernie gave him, and I’m in a fancy Greek hat that Grandma Mary brought back from her Mediterranean Cruise.  He took the furry hat back to UCLA.

It was a Happy Holiday Visit, and we got some sorting and organizing done too!  What more could a Mom ask for…

Except maybe her Honey coming on December 14th for a Happy Holiday Visit and Honey helping sort and organize too!  I’ll have them both in for Christmas/New Year’s so look forward to whipping The Chaos into a bit better shape while they are here.  Looking forward to having access to strong, tall men.  I’ll have to cook and feed them, but small price to pay for all the much needed help they will provide.

SQUEEE.

The Change Begins

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So the work that was supposed to happen in Spencer’s room a few Saturday’s ago finally happened this past weekend.  Well, most of it anyway.

Finally started in on washing all the linens as well.  I ran out of fabric softener and then had issues with soap and not enough quarters and well, I’m lucky I got my clothes washed a few weeks ago.

There was finally a trip to Jo-Ann’s for the last of the fabrics I need for the quilts I’m about to start up.  Doggie quilt needed one more color, Spencer’s quilt needed two more colors and I needed some cotton thread.  Once I get all the tops made, I’ll be back at the store for some batting and backing for Spence’s and Sis’s quilt.  Mom had already bought the backing and the batting for Doggie’s quilt, so all I needed was thread.  I’ve got a cute idea for the Doggie quilt so hope he enjoys it when it’s all said and done (like he cares, he just needs a new blankie because current blankie is about to fall into even more pieces).  I’m sure Mom had just the basic quilt in mind with the pattern fabric for the top and a plain fabric for the bottom, but being a quilter, I just had to add another color, cut it all up and then put it all back together.

Sounds crazy, I know.  One of these days I’ll take some photos of the quilts I have here that I’ve made.

OK, now for the room (it’s about time, right?!?).

Here we have the room “before”, with the bed against one wall, all the stuff off the wall and everything else out of the room.

And here is the room “after”, with the bed moved to a different wall.  After of course having vacuumed the nightstand, the lamp, the mattress set, the frame, the ceiling, the wall, and the floor.  Nothing like a nice cleany clean room!

Tomorrow night I vacuum the drapes, clean the window, vacuum out the closet and start bringing stuff in!

Need to get moving with getting this set up because I need to get moving on all those quilts.  Can’t wait to get the sewing machines all set up with organized stash shelves, and everything in its place.

It will be my first dedicated sewing/craft area ever!  It will be nice to be able to leave out my machines and not have to worry about clearing off the table and putting everything away when I’m done for the day.

I’ve been finding a lot of small quilted items that I’ve got all cut out but need to be assembled, so I just might have to set something up to sell all this stuff.

Well the ones upstairs are done exercising and practically bringing down the ceiling, so it is my turn to make noise and fire up my NutriBlast blender thingy.  Need to get breakfast ready for tomorrow.

Room Redeco, Step 1 – Yarn Stash Wrangling

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After several false starts and just plain ignoring it, the yarny organization portion of the closet re-do in Spencer’s room is almost complete.  Only thing left to do is to go through all my needles and notions and knitterly what-nots.  Most of those are going in a special box on the shelf, directly above the hanging thing.  The rest will go in organizers I hope to make and hang off the side of the hanging thing which has some very handy dandy pockets and straps along both sides.  First I need to see what I have.

Here is a photo as promised.  This is all of my yarn.  Yes, ALL of my yarn.  If it doesn’t fit in this hanging thing, it does not stay or come into the apartment.  If you are a non-knitter, you will think, “Wow, that is a LOT of yarn!”  If you are a knitter, you’ll think, “Oh that poor thing, she’s STARVING herself, absolutely STARVING herself!”
I have plenty of stash, seriously, I do.  At the rate I knit, this should probably last me about 5 years.  A different way to look at it is: one sweater (that’s the denim yarn on the bottom shelf, yes I found it!), a dozen or so cotton cloths, 11 definite pairs of socks, 5 shawls/wraps, 1 scarf, and what could be either 6 wraps or 6 pairs of socks.  Oh, and half a T.A.R.D.I.S.
Whether you are a knitter or a non-knitter, you are thinking, “Wow, that’s a shitload of knitting.”
(Some of you are thinking, “What the heck is a T.A.R.D.I.S.”  Google is your friend.  Watch the Doctor and learn my friends.)
Anyway, yes, it is a LOT of knitting – especially for me because I knit when the spirit moves me, and it takes me a long time to finish something. Most of the time I start something, get pretty far in it, then decide to take it apart and make it into something else.  It’s just the way I knit – and I enjoy the hell out of it.
By the way, not included in the hanging stash is the sweater I already have on needles and a shawl I’m also working on…the sweater lives in my project bag next to Chair and the shawl occasionally travels with me.
Next up is the sewing stash.  It’s a bit too heavy for a hanging stash keeper, so I’m going to have to come up with something else.  I have been looking at various web pages about organizing such things as fabric, patterns, and thread.  I have shelf space, various nice boxes, and a creative mind.
Onward and upward.

Stalled

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Last Saturday I was full steam ahead on the Chaos Redecoration of Spencer’s Room.

These past few days, not so much.  I’m just not feeling it.  The beginning of the week was soooooooooooooo hotttttttttttttttttttttttttttt.  Whiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiine.

Seriously, it was triple digits for a few days.  It is now cooler.  I am much happier.  The internal furnace (aka hot flash) was full blast these last few days, either brought on by the high temps or just because it felt like firing up full blast.

Loving the cooler temps because even if the inner furnace is ready to blow, I feel “normal”.  My cheeks may be purple or red, or one in each color, but I don’t feel like I’m going to singe all the hair off of my head.

Side Note: If you see me out in public, no, I did NOT lose my mirror when putting on blush this morning.  I don’t wear makeup, that is my new natural coloring.

Back to being stalled.  If you can’t tell, I do NOT like high temps.  I feel drained, listless and downright useless.  Since last Saturday, it was all I could do to make sure I got back home.  Therefore, nothing was done in the room.  I tried several times to get some more work going on, but as far as I got was to go into the room, stand in the middle, sigh and walk out.  There really isn’t much left in the room to do.  Just need to move the bed, vacuum that corner, clean the window, vacuum the curtains (they get dusty and the vacuum is the easiest way to deal with floor to ceiling curtains), move the bed to the other wall, move the drafting/sewing desk and chair to the room, move the big metal shelf to the room, and start putting things away.

Oh, is THAT ALL?!?

Saturday it’s an early trip to Jo-Ann Fabrics for some fabric (of course), and then it’s back to more linen laundry and work in the room while that is happening.  I need to get that room set up as soon as possible.  I’ve got some MAJOR projects in the works and I really need to get them going.  This time around, we’re working with the serger and the sewing machine.  It’s Chaos Quilting time. I’ve got three to make.

Dog-size, lap-size, and Twin XL-size.

That is all.

Getting used to things…

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Mainly, I’m still not used to this new blogger layout.

Worst part about it is that I didn’t actively change it.  Instead of doing that, I just ignored all the notices that popped up every time I logged in about a “new blogger coming” and then one day last week, there it was…

The “new” blogger…

And here I am trying to figure it all out.

I will, eventually.

One other thing I’m not used to is anything Spencer related.

Not used to:

  1. Not texting him at the end of the day to ask his opinion on that night’s dinner.
  2. Going into his room and doing stuff – that was his domain, I hardly set foot in it.
  3. Doing the dishes, thankfully, there is only me, so there aren’t that many now.  He somehow dirtied every dish every day – or at least that is what it seemed like.
  4. Not having 3 loads of laundry a week.  I’m down to 2 every other week.  Now THAT I like.
  5. Cleaning BOTH bathrooms, once again, the hall bathroom was his domain.
  6. There are many little things I come across, too many to list or remember but they cause memories and twinges of missing him.

I’ll eventually get used to it all and I really do miss him, but with email, texting, facebook and Skype, I can keep in contact way too easily for his liking.  Bwahahaha.

I was going to take a photo of the first part of my closet re-do, but forgot, so that’ll happen soon.  I’ve got a bit of a hot mess on the last few “shelves” of the hanging thing for yarny goodness, so I should figure out what I’m going to do with it before I snap any photos of the ‘finished product’ anyway.  I have been sorting through lots of things and moving other things around and still haven’t found that other box of yarn, but I know it’s in the apartment somewhere.  I’m missing some very cool denim yarn that my sister gifted me a LONG time ago. I KNOW I still have it.  The bottom-shelves-hot-mess may need to be donated to make room for it.  No great loss since it’s been that hot mess for 2-3 years now – I obviously have no feelings for neither that project nor that yarn.

Tomorrow morning is a wash-a-thon of linens.  Stripping both beds, washing everything, seeing what linens stay, what linens go.  My donation pile will grow exponentially tomorrow morning, I’m sure of it. 

I have 4 rolls of quarters.  Bring it.

And so it begins?

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I have made a few decisions on what to do with Spencer’s room.

First I thought about going to a smaller space, then decided against that because I didn’t want to pack to move, didn’t want to pay to move, and didn’t want to be bothered with moving in general.

So now his room becomes a craft/storage/bedroom room.

It’s still partially his room, only I’m arranging it the way “I” want it to look.  His part is the bed.  Oh and he has a bit of the closet still, but not very much.

I’ve decided to store all my decorations and craft supplies in the closet.  I know the craft supplies will fit, but I’m not so sure about the holiday decorations.

Here’s my plan:

Each craft and holiday is designated a certain amount of space.  It does not increase. 

First up: knitting/crocheting and all things yarny.

I hit Ikea yesterday and bought this and this for my knitting.  So far so good.  I had already thinned out a LOT of my knitting stash, so things are fitting perfectly just where they need to be.  I have a sneaking suspicion that there is another box of yarn lurking somewhere and that will throw my whole plan into chaos, but I’ll cross that bridge when I find that box.  I have another shelf of the hanging thingy available so things just might fit.

Photo proof available soon.

I had the idea for the knitting in my head and it needed to come out and come into being NOW, so had to get that out of my system.  Now I can get back to concentrating on stripping the bed, washing everything, getting new sheets, and dealing with the corner of boxes that Spencer left behind.  Then I can move the bed to the wall I’ve always wanted it to be against, and start moving things in and out once I’ve given the room a thorough vacuum and cleaning.

The Chaos will truly be Chaos until the dust settles.

What.Ever.

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So tomorrow is the “annual inspecting of the apartments”.

What have I done for the last few days or nights when I’ve had free time?

Knit.

Road my bike with Spencer.

Played a stupid computer game.

Some would say I’m not ready for inspection (like me, for instance).

I don’t really care.  The place is clean and I’ll shift the clutter around into the stacks where it should go and will end up anyway.  It’s mostly in boxes right now, so it’ll be easier than it sounds.

A few signs saying “Donate” and “Back to storage” on each of the respective stacks and I’m done.

Although the “Back to storage” is really “still need to go through” as I do not intend to put anything back into storage.

But the inspectors don’t need to know that right now.

Gee…almost a month between posts!

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Hey, I’m on a roll…

Sorry no postie. I’ve been really busy at work. On a computer and sitting all day equals total aversion to sitting down in front of a computer at night.

I’ve been sitting, but not with the computer.

I’ve done a few rows of knitting here and there. I’ve been reading. I’ve been listening to someone else read (books on CD anyone?). I’ve been playing Xbox (yes, I do). Mostly tho, I’ve been collapsing on the couch after dinner and falling asleep.

I’ve started a Pilates class on Wednesdays at noon. Unfortunately I’ll have to stop that after this month. I just can’t keep up with it financially. I am going to get 2 good months out of it, so hopefully can continue on my own.

Been on the bike a few times.

I voted. Ms Cow wrote in Cow for Parks and Grasses Boss. Wonder what the vote counters thought of that. 🙂

Found a great hairdresser. Got great new color, went bold on a new, shorter cut. Lost a great hairdresser. Went back for great new color and to maintain cut. Color worked, cut, not so much.

Growing out hair…and will most likely go back to coloring my own hair again. I can color my own hair in an hour as opposed to 3 hours at the salon. And will still save money over getting it done at a school. As for cuts, I can go to the corner and get a quick trim for $10 with a coupon. Bim bam, I’m outta there! No more wasting an entire Saturday morning or afternoon sitting in a chair smelling chemicals for 4 hours.

It was good while it lasted. The salon folks were very friendly and really listened to what I wanted to do with my hair. I just can’t do it any more. Sigh.

I really do like my new cut, but it’s a pain. It grows out way too quickly. I can’t pull it back and still look nice – it takes about 8 clips to hold it back cos it’s so thick. I look like I was having something done at the salon and had to leave in a hurry.

If I leave it down, I get hot. Really hot. Especially when riding my bike. It’s like wearing a really really thick woolly hat that dips down over the back of my neck. All the time.

No thanks. I like the option of either putting it up or wearing it down or wearing it half up or whatever.

So I’m going to let it grow back. I miss my biking braids too. 🙂

Went thru an episode of Kitty not sleeping and MEOWING all night long. Is why I’ve been so damn tired. No sleep will do that to you. She’s sleeping again now, but I’m still not. Sigh. I’m getting better but I swear I still hear her MEOWING even tho she’s sound asleep at the end of the bed.

I’ve been trying to organize and get rid of about half of what I’ve got in this place before Honey and Cow arrive. Less than 40 days now and the place is not quite where I’d like it to be. I’ve got lots of things that need to go away and now need to find a way to get them away.

Getting a few items from a very generous friend that need new homes and I really could use here, so need to get back to work. They are arriving tomorrow.

Before I forget again…

Happy Biking Anniversary to me and my pretty pretty bike. Three years last month (Oct 16th) and still going strong. Really wish I could get myself in your saddle a lot more often.

Time to sort, organize and pack up give-aways!

When you start thinking of excuses…

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…not to do something you love doing, it’s time to stop.

What am I talking about? Knitting.

Not stopping knitting, just stopping knitting 2-socks-at-once toe up.

I know I was excited about it, I know there are others who just L.O.V.E. it. Honestly, I think it’s the most wonderful thing since just plain Toe Up and Magic Loop.

(hanging head and sighing) I just can’t do it. I can’t get into a good enough rythym with it and God knows I’ve tried. And tried and tried and tried.

I started making excuses not to pull out my knitting on the train. Not too far out there if you consider that my ride is short and it took me the entire 25 min just to do one full round on each sock. About 10 minutes was spent untangling the yarn and cables. How do people DO this?!?

But then, I started making excuses not to knit on the socks at home, in the evening, when I was doing laundry or watching TV when I had plenty of time (so to speak – it’s multitasking time, but time none-the-less). I started cleaning and sorting and organizing rather than knit.

You know it’s bad when you’d rather clean than knit. Especially if I’d rather clean than knit. I’d rather do ANYTHING than clean.

The 40″ size 1 square needle had to go.

Back came the size 1 bamboo dpns. Ahhh…. I’m back to enjoying knitting socks. They may be one at time, but they are getting done. I’m sticking to the toe-up thing tho, that I absolutely L.O.V.E., whether it’s one-at-a-time or two-at-a-time.

Oh, and after taking apart the two socks, and after knitting for about 3 inches further on one of them, I discovered that they were probably too small. I looked at my calculations, the instructions for the calculations, the sock, and (sigh) something just didn’t seem right. Asked Honey for his measurements again, redid the calculations (redid again) and sure enough…too small!

No worries tho…both socks frogged, yarn cakes remade, new larger socks started. I’m about at the same spot I was when I frogged the one I started with the other method. Knitting one at a time. 🙂

It’s so much easier to knit on the train, and people really avoid sitting next to me again since I have a mini-porcupine in my lap. They seemed to like the bowl of spaghetti better (seriously, with all the cables, yarn, etc – it looked like spaghetti). Guess it didn’t look so “dangerous”.

Anyway, I knit cos I enjoy knitting. Doesn’t matter what I make or how long it takes me to make it. I don’t even care if I have to frog several times before I get it right. Just means I can knit even more. 🙂

At the rate I’m going, Honey’s socks with be ready in no time flat – definitely way before he comes to visit. I might even have my pair AND Spence’s pair done too – and we can be sock triplets cos I’m making them ALL out of the Knit Picks Time Traveler yarn! hee hee hee

Edited to add:

Just want to give a shout-out to Charles Voth, author of Design Your Own Toe Up Socks. I’ve knit every single pair of socks (5 pr complete) since I started knitting socks with his method of measurements and calculations and they come out perfect for the wearer every time. Follow the link and the tutorial is for sale in the right had column.

Sorting thru the Chaos

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Today Spence and I used a friend’s car to haul a bunch of stuff off to the Thrift Store.

A b.u.n.c.h. of stuff!

We filled up the car…boxes, baskets, little shelves, bags. It felt absolutely wondermos to get rid of it all.

After, we headed off to IKEA to pick up a few things to organize Spencer’s closet. We’re doing a major rearrange and clear out in his room. We actually just walked out of that place with just a few items – and some hot dogs after at the snack bar. 🙂

A quick stop at work to pick up some more boxes (for packing up stuff for donation of course) and then it was home.

Last trip of the day was back to my friend’s place to drop off the car and here we sit. Tired out, but full on artichoke ravioli.

Tomorrow, we’re off on the bikes for a training ride. We’re doing this in a few weekends. I’ve done 5 mile rides and 10 mile rides…I should be able to do this ride. I’ll find out soon enough. If I can’t make the training rides, I won’t push myself to do the full ride. I really want to do it tho and Spence wants to come along too. Maybe even get his riding buddies to come along as well.

It really looks like fun and I hope the weather cooperates. Hope Summer doesn’t decide to settle in the valley on that particular weekend. 🙂