Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Robert Frost

I like reading Robert Frost poems.  He's got a writing style that is easy to understand and yet lyrical.  
This blog post might be titled 'The Road Not Taken':

The Road Not Taken
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

My road has not been taken by many - Single Mom who got off of welfare, married a man older than she, took jobs working in male-dominated industries, consciously joined the Catholic Church at the age of 39 (or 38..it's been a few years).   
The road is diverging again, from a sedate, very cushy job of working at home to one of working in the real world.  There are two roads before me: One with schooling that would take one year and give me a decent salary, health benefits and retirement $ that I need, or another road that will take about 5 years to complete.  That one will give me much more salary, bennies and perhaps last longer due to it's lack of physical demands. 
Not that making knitting bags and selling them online is not great, but there's no bennies to it: No health insurance and no retirement.  As the reason for staying at home is leaving for the Air Force shortly, it is time to refocus on my future. Kinda odd to think about at my age, really. I'm not kidding when I say that!
I've talked to a counselor about registering at the Tech School for a year of training to get my Welder's Certificate.  I'd have to take night courses and that's not easy with one car and two people. One of which does not get home until 5 and I need to be in class by 4. There is always a demand for competent welders and I've done the work before as a Maintenance Mechanic.  I find welding oddly soothing.  It's solitary and challenging, but it is physical.  That is the downside to the career; I might not be able to last another 30 years doing it. 
I'll be talking to another counselor this week about finishing off my Bachelor's Degree.  What would it be in?  Electrical Engineering.  This is another male-dominated field, but one in which I'm actually pretty proficient. The Associate's degree in Robotics does help.  It's a field that has many roads to wander down once I have a degree.  
And hopefully I could get a job with my BS and work on my Master's at the same time.  That would lessen the burden on this family if I could earn money and get my post-grad work done at the same time. This is the one large problem I have with this road: The length of time it takes to get to my destination.  That and the uncertainty of actually getting a job afterwards. Will my age and gender work for me or against me? 
It's the time in my life where I look at both roads and discern which one would be the best for me.  Each has it's rewards and detractions.  I'll let you know how that goes.

Random Pic:
Dave, trying out his Christmas present from Alex: A sonic massager w/heat.  He likes it. I think it tries to pull my head off my neck.  Notice the cute picture of Alex in the back? He was like 12 at the time -pre-puberty.  He changed so much in one year. 
He's on his last big push to lose the last 8 pounds and get to MEPS. The last step before heading to Texas for Air Force Boot Camp. 

Saturday, May 26, 2012

For all it's cuteness...a baby duck sitting on Dave's stomach. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

I forgot Random Tuesday!

OMG! As my lame excuse, let me show you what we've accomplished in the last week:

Those 6 chickens are now happily ensconced in their new coop.  Yeah sure, it's not shingled and it needs another coat of paint, but we're in crunch time here.  This Friday we are getting 25 more chickens and 6 ducks. They will be babies, but we needed to clean out the garage so we can put the brooder back down. To do that, these 6 chickens needed to be in the coop.

By the way the ^%#^% chickens don't like the roost I made them.  They're roosting on the rafters now. Flipping chickens!   More goose eggs are incubating.  Expected hatching is in about 2 weeks. I have been candling them this time and from my novice expertise, I say about 4 out of 8 look viable. But because I am a novice we will incubate all 8 for the 30 days.  Hey, call me pro-life.

Knitting is going on.  I've made a pillow for my aging Tigger,

a Wingspan shawl from leftover yarn, a Mango for our bud Francis

Made from Bernat Mosaic, he was much larger than my Mango and Papaya, but machine washable.  The nice thing about self striping yarn is not having to color change as much.  The arms and legs were made with the Bernat and some Acrylic stuff. Caron I think.

There is a pattern for a simple throw made from bulky acrylic yarn that I am creating.  The pattern is a very simple 12 row repeat.  The only barrier to showing it off to the world and publishing it is the darned knitting.  No worries, it is knitting up fast!

--- And CONGRATULATIONS goes out to my favorite Receiver Donald Driver for winning Dancing With The Stars!!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Random Tuesday and other stuff

It was a tough week last week.  The death of Goosie, then a brutal head cold kept me pretty much laid up on the recliner heavily medicated.   I've been trying to work on a satchel-type bag that was never real popular (except for one Aussie who likes it) but I find real handy. So...for a few pictures..
The first is a delft blue with yellow interior. It's about 15" wide by 12" deep. I need to finish up securing the raw edges. Raw edges like to snag yarn. And now that I look at the picture and the real thing, yes...the pockets are a bit skewed on this one. 
This was the first one made.  I'm not happy with the loops for the strap: too much raw edge showing. I also did not like the size as it's very deep but not very wide. And it's skewed too.  I gotta work on that. 
The last one is hard to see the pockets in the front because the interior fabric coordinates with the exterior so well.  Now this one might be a bit TOO big 16" by 14" 

There are no pockets inside these bags, just the two (or 3 on the pink one) large pockets in the front of the bag.  The goal with these bags is to put 3 or 4 small KIPs in them to store while travelling or to keep them safe while the projects are in process.  I've got one sweater marinating in a bag like this that I will probably pick up again when it gets colder. 

Now sewing up these bags is like 90% easy 10% tedious.  The last bit requires thread and needle work.  Because of the nature of 2-sided  quilted fabric, I needed to bind off the seams with extra fabric like this: 

and that requires hand stitching WHICH I would have been done with if I had not caught a cold.  I'm recovering, but it will take about another week. The downside of having asthma is that each cold tries it's best to kill me by settling into my lungs.  Like there's an upside to asthma, right?

Random Photo:

My son, Alex and my cat, Tigger.  We are up in my sewing room avoiding the whirlwind cleaning actions of my husband.  When he gets in a mood to start cleaning on Friday, we scatter.  It's just easier to stay out of his way than attempt to help.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Random Tuesday

The Bad News is that the Goose Chick died Sunday Night.  I miss the lil' pooper.  He was breathing real hard and I heard a rattle in those breaths.  My diagnosis is that he had a lung infection.  

We have more eggs on the way, and what we've learned in the last month will hopefully gain us more HEALTHY chicks. I hope so, cuz I miss my lil' pooper.

Random Tuesday: The day I select a photo from my stash and share.  Today it will be.....

That stupid hula lady has figured into many pictures over the last 5 years.  I gave it to my Husband as a stocking stuffer for Christmas.  I have pictures of her in Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Illinois, Iowa and of course, Wisconsin.  Each time I took a photo out of the front window of the van, the Hula Lady would be in it.  I would think, 'Oh I'll crop that out when I get home.'

I've got an entire series of photos with her showcasing either the horrific distance down the side of a mountain, some quaint mountain stream, or what I could only call crazy bicyclists peddling up Wolf Creek Pass in Wyoming. 

This time, I was photographing a spectacular cloud formation: 
Does anyone else see the Elephant sticking it's trunk out in that cloud?

Did I mention that I miss my little Gosling? Yeah. I do. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


That's me with the yet un-named African Goose Chick.  He's bonded with me. I'm not sure if it's a boy or girl, just go with me on the 'he' bit..it's easier than doing the whole he/she all the time.  He follows me, hollers for me, and wants to hang out and eat my hair.  It's like having another child in the house but fuzzier.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Perhaps tomorrow....

I was planning on downloading a short video of the gosling, but SOMEONE (sliding my eyes over to my Son...Grrr) is hogging the bandwidth!

Anyways, research into the African Goose shows me a large, very talkative, friendly-when-not-mating goose.  Yeah, sure. I wasn't going to get attached to that kind of bird! Perhaps we'll start our own breeding flock and sell the babies. Who knows?

Random Tuesday will start............now (I pick randomly from my file of pictures..once a week)

Oh, Sally!  This is my Mother and Father-in-Law's black Lab Sally.  She's now 4, which means in Lab age, she finally has become an adult.  But as you see, she still thinks a game of fetch means to bring someone a flipping tree stump.