Monday, June 27, 2011

How hard is it to break a treadmill anyways?

The family has been experiencing a lot of changes lately, and I've not been knitting nearly enough! Our son Alex has graduated from High School and was preparing to enter Tech School for a welding degree. Everything was all purty and quiet here and then he got a text - from his girlfriend - who broke up with him - in a text. So 2 years of relationship ends in a text (can you tell that's a real annoying point for me, the text?) and my son is left bereft, hurt and without a real need to stay in this podunk little town.

Two weeks ago, he announces, "I want to go into the Navy."

Okay! This option was floated about in the last few years for many reasons: 1. We've got no real $$ saved up for college. 2. His grades are not really indicative of ambition towards a college goal. 3. This kid can code computer programs IN HIS SLEEP, and needs a place where he can expand on that knowledge is a more structured environment than college. College has too many distractions (girlz and booz)

So now Navy is on the table again. We go to the recruiter and discuss his options. His only downside right now into joining is his need to get into shape. Mom decides this is the perfect time to join a gym and get into shape herself. The Brodhead Health Club has a 3 month membership that is perfect for our needs. Each day Alex and I get up, and get to the gym for an hour to 1 1/2 hours of real workout with weights and cardio.

This ol body is not liking it one. single. bit. I'm sore, I'm tired and I keep falling asleep in the afternoon. Of course, that might just be the lack of Pepsi going through my veins. Our goals are modest and attainable as long as we keep on them. If I get to my goal, I thought another Tat might be the reward. Alex gets a snappy new wardrobe and a new career.

Prayers are needed to keep us focused. I'm going to try something I've never tried before: Jogging. My ~ahem~ chest rack has precluded much running as I don't want a bruised eye, but with new spandex technologies, I think I can tame them enough to jog. I used to say I only ran when chased. I guess I better find someone to chase my treadmill at the gym then!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Updates galore

Let's start with Mango. Mango's taken on the personality of a cranky wild-child. He wanted to go planking, so sure...we went planking. Ok, he planked, I took pictures. He then noticed my frustration at a certain child who is on the cusp of graduating High School. That child has become so unfocused that he's almost useless. If you tell him something, you might as well staple a post-it note to his forehead.

NO, I won't staple it...maybe some duct tape?

Mango insisted on head butting him to remind him for the 4th time to take the compost bucket down to the heap. That's when Mango lost his button eyes. So I sewed them back on. Mango then announced that he needed a friend. Stuffed animal creation is actually ideal for stressful situations. Great for ADD:

Mango and Papaya aren't really that chummy yet. Mango's ticked because I haven't given him a tail yet. Papaya's eyes are embroidered so they won't fly off in a fit of anger.

Graduation: Yeah. It's a big step that has long been a distant goal. Now that it's almost here, well it's been less organized that I had hoped. That's mostly because the cost. A hundred bucks for announcements? Who has that kind of cash. And that's without the cute little name cards. UH! Forty bucks for a graduation gown? He's wearing it one day! UH. With my sales being 1/2 of what they used to be, and Dave's hours being cut....well there's just not a lot of disposable cash for this.

Did I mention that his girlfriend persuaded him to get his hair cut? It might have been mean to laugh, but Dad and I did anyways.

Good thing I have skills. His announcements are printed at home. We got the gown and I'm less than happy about the fit. I could've sewn a better gown! Grad party? We'll be having ours in August to let Alex go to as many of his friends' parties as he wishes. That also gives us time to do some outside sprucing-up.

In the design aspect of life, I was presented with a challenge by a Ravelry user. She showed me a bag created to hold 2 skeins of yarn and allow a knitter to knit 2 socks at once. Sounds fine right? The trick is that the bag holds the skeins in such a way that a person can run the yarn right off the top and keep the skeins from rolling around. Now that's the hard part!

The design is much like compartments sewn from quilted fabrics.

See the two diagonal lines? What is not seen is the compartments under those lines. Each separate from the other. The slit is to allow the yarn to come out while the yarn is snug in their own little apartments.

Oh, and I've met the most talented weaver who is weaving shoulder straps for the KIP Bags. She has an inkle loom, which is used pretty much exclusively for weaving very sturdy straps.

The straps come with installation hardware and instruction and can be woven in two primary colors. I chose black and red so I can show the design simply. They are great! Sally gets all the $ for them, so grab one for your bag today.