September 14, 2011
We got our new roof at the beginning of the year. It’s great, it’s lovely, and it keeps the rain from pouring into our back bedroom. After that, we were able to replace the drywall and redo the room. Unfortunately, we had to replace the flooring also. We had spent all that time installing the bamboo flooring, but since it had a huge amount of water damage, we had to tear it out completely.
We decided that the two small bedrooms should match, so even though, the front bedroom had no water damage, we tore out the flooring from there also. That was so depressing to have to do. Luckily, I really wanted carpet in the bedrooms in the first place, so I’m pretty happy about having carpet now. I do wish we had put carpet in the master though, too.
Muffin did all of the drywall, taping, and mudding in the back room, and he did an absolutely awesome job. It looks fantastic. Since he had done all of that, the least I could do was paint, so that was my contribution to the back room. We bought the carpet from The Home Depot, and we bought one of the cheapest options available. You really can’t tell, now that it’s installed. It’s soft, it’s nice looking, and it’s great to walk on.
The installation team turned out to be one lone guy, and it only took him a few hours from start to finish. He was really nice, and he did an awesome job. I’m really glad to be done with the bedrooms, and many thousands of dollars later, they look really nice.
August 31, 2011
I started jogging again last week. I haven’t really been exercising since we quit going to the gym early this year, so I figured it was about time to start. I’ve been getting up at 5:30am and going for a run before I get ready for work. It hasn’t been too bad so far, but I’m still working up to a reasonable running time. I started at 10 minutes last week, and I’m up to 12-13 minutes this week. It will take me a few more weeks to get up to 20 minutes. Then I’ll figure out a route that takes me about 20 minutes and run that. If I get faster, I can get home earlier. That’s better motivation for me. I find it depressing when I just have to slog on for 20 minutes no matter what.
Since I have two little dogs, I’ve been feeling guilty about going running and not taking them with me. They need the exercise as much as I do, so today I finally took Figgy with me. I should have taken him when I first started so we could build up together. He was dragging a little, so I cut my run short for him. He also had no idea of what was happening, so I cut him some slack. He did a good job being my running buddy, and he should get used to it pretty fast.
I’m also going to try to get Lothar to run with me, but I’m less sure of success with him. He’s more like me, and when someone tries to make me run, I want no part of it. I’m really hoping I can work him up to it. I might have to go on two runs for a while, one real run with Figgy and one short run with Lothar (and maybe Figgy) to build up Lothar’s stamina. That little chubby-pants definitely needs to go running. See, just like me!
August 23, 2011
I’ve been listening to a lot of knitting podcasts this year since I’ve become obsessed with knitting. There are 14 that I listen to right now, and I’ve started at the very beginning for about eight of them. Out of those eight, about three or four of them have over 100 episodes, some of them over 150. It’s taking me a long time to work my way through them all, and for a while, I was just listening to the old episodes in order to catch up. Then I realized that I was missing out on what was going on now, so I started listening to the new episodes as they come out and the old episodes to catch up.
Once I started listening to the new episodes, I realized that I could actually go to things like Stitches or retreats. So many of the podcasters that I listen to went to Camp KIP this year, and it sounded like so much fun. I was sad to have missed it, and it made me sad that I wasn’t a knitter for so many years. I half-assed my knitting for a long time, and now it all seems like wasted time. Anyway, after listening to everyone go to Stitches, OFFF, Madrona, and a million others, I decided that this year, I’m signing up for Camp KIP. So I did!
I’m in the 2nd camp session. It’s pretty exciting since I’ll get to meet a lot of the people I listen to on podcasts and read on Ravelry, but it’s also a little nerve-wracking that I’ll be at camp with people who all know each other and who are like celebrities for me. I added a comment on Ravelry for camp, and I was SO excited when Jackie replied to my comment. It was a total fangirl moment! Hopefully, I’ll be able to rein it in once I get to camp!
Because I’m so excited, I’ve already had my first dream about camp. Ha! Camp isn’t until April, so there’s still a long time to wait. I hope I don’t have camp dreams every night until then; I don’t think I would make it all the way until camp in that case. I’ve also decided to go on a yarn diet until camp, so I’m not going to buy anything knitting-related until camp (starting September 1, so I placed my last Knit Picks order last week). Of course, I’m making an exception for our trip to China; I can buy whatever I want within my China-shopping budget. I’ll also have to try to talk all my family into buying me knitting things fro Christmas to tide me over until April, but I think it will all be worth the wait!
August 16, 2011
Since I’ve been knitting so much, I thought that I ought to knit some things for charity. I have so much yarn in my stash that I won’t wind up using the yarn that I don’t really love. I figured that I could put some of that Red Heart to good use knitting some things for charity.
On Ravelry, I came across the Stitches for Sisters (SfS) group and thought their project sounded like a great opportunity to use up a ton of yarn and support a good cause. (Although I do think the name is a bit odd.) They were making blankets for women in Ethiopia who suffered from fistulas, which are basically holes in the vaginal canal caused by prolonged labor. Hamlin is an Australian organization that provides surgery to repair the fistulas, and then gives the women a blanket after the surgery for comfort. SfS collected 4″ squares from anyone willing to knit them and is sewing them together into quilts. It was a great thing to be a part of, and I can’t wait to see photos of the finished blankets.
I knit 88 squares in total. I also had some other knitting projects on-going at the same time, but I managed to spend most of my time on the squares. Each square took me about 45 minutes or an hour to knit, so I was able to do a lot of squares in the less than two months I worked on them. I only managed to knit nine wool squares. I used my dyed Lion Brand Fishermen’s Wool, and it seemed like the fibers would become airborne. Whenever I knit with it, I had a hard time breathing afterward, so I shied away from knitting with it very often. The wool squares came out nicely, even if there are very few of them.
The only problem was that shipping the squares to Australia cost $19! After they sew the squares together, they’re going to have to ship the blankets to Ethiopia. I imagine that if everyone just donated the money spent on shipping to Hamlin, they could do a lot more good for a lot more women.
August 8, 2011
I had surgery on February 15 this year. Last year, I had surgery on February 20. Since the surgery was on my wrist, I wasn’t able to type until I got my cast off, which was on March 24. Once I got my cast off, I still couldn’t use my arm for a few more weeks. I was really frustrated about not being able to do anything, so I sort of quit doing everything. I did knit as soon as I could though. I started knitting in December, and I’ve really been obsessed. Since I couldn’t knit for about two months, I really have been feeling like I have to knit 24/7. Every spare moment, I’ve basically been knitting and listening to knitting podcasts.
Obviously, I’m nowhere close to my blog post goal, but I’m going to start it back up. I constantly think about posts I want to write. I just haven’t been able to decide what my first post should be. This is it. Short and sweet, just to get my back on my feet. My wrist is about 85% of what it was on February 12, 2010, and I think that’s about as good as it’s going to get at this point. It will keep loosening up over time, but I’m not sure how much more I can go. I may as well get back to what I was doing before!