Tuesday, August 29, 2017

BIC Gel-o-city!

I was lucky enough to earn a mission through Smiley360 to try BIC Gel-o-city pens for free. I LOVE school supplies, and I really love the idea of gel pens. Unfortunately they always goop and smear.

The Gel-o-city pens are awesome! The ink writes smooth and dries quick so it doesn't smear. I am partial to fine pens, but even as a medium point it's smooth and fun to work with. I'd love to try coloring with a bunch of these pens.

I highly recommend giving them a try!

Friday, January 27, 2017

Follow Up

OK, so I can't post my panic post about painting without the follow up.

The painting was fine. I hate my picture, but other people seem to like it (Including my kids, who hung it up right away). The experience was pretty awful. Let's just say I will never take a painting class from this person (who would not tell us his name) ever again. Bob Ross says there are no mistakes. This dude (CJ) pointed out all of our mistakes-we're doing it wrong, we're not using enough paint, we're using too much paint, we're using too much water, we're not using enough water, "Why are you all just sitting there gabbing?" even though he hadn't told us the next step. I almost walked out 3 times. Fortunately, we finished the painting in one night, because had it gone over 2 nights, I wouldn't have gone back.

So I learned. I will buy my painting supplies and paint with Bob Ross on Netflix. It will be good.

Knitting News:

Still working on Counterpoint. I have to start my socks for January (It's the 27th already!). Finished a Pussy Hat for Anna, and now have to make 4 to send to Australia (!).

I am beyond thrilled that I signed up for the Loopy Ewe's Loopy Groupies Warm Woolies. I've received 2 of the 3 shipments, and it's so much fun to get surprise yarn in the mail!  Here is December's:

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Brushes by Night

So tonight I am going to a painting class, to paint a picture (not paint a wall). Who knew something so simple can cause so much anxiety.

It's $20. It's not a big deal. It's something I've always wanted to do. But here's where I am in my mind:
*It's going to suck. I can't paint.
*I don't even know what door to go in. What if I go in the wrong door and get yelled at?
*What if I'm surrounded by bitches who all know each other and won't talk to me? This will make my loneliness worse.
*I should be home cleaning. My kids won't clean while I'm gone. They're not as good as other people's kids.
*I am literally watching Bob Ross videos to psych myself up.

Seriously, I already know the flipside:
*What if it's great?
*What of you learn something new?
*What if you meet nice people to talk to?

It's just hard for me to think that way. Nothing good seems to happen. And when it does, it comes with caveats that stop it from being all it should.

Let's face it, I shouldn't be terrified about an art class. It's fucked up. But it just reinforces everything I see wrong with me. I don't do anything right. And nobody cares. And is that good, or bad?

Monday, January 9, 2017

New Year Knitting

It's nice to see that 2017 has already been more productive knitwise than 2016. One of my favorite knitters to follow on Facebook asked what our favorite FO was of 2016, and I didn't have one. I didn't finish many. The ones I did, were quick and acrylic-y.

I am proud to say I have already finished 2 items of knitted goodness, and I am working on my 3rd. And it's January 9th!  So that is Rockstar progress. To be completely transparent, both were test knits--so I had a deadline to get them done.  But I did it, by Good Golly!


The first one is on the way to Thora, so just in case she checks, I'm not going to post it here. But the second one was an awesome cowl from Jesseknits. I am not a cowl-wearing folk (I probably should be, but I feel like I'm being choked). I knit this one in Kraemer Perfection (the color is Peacock).

One thing that makes me sad in terms of my knitting life is that since I moved, I don't have access to my favorite LYS. I've gained closer access to Herrschners, which is not a bad thing, but it's not the same. I finally found an LYS--a bit of a drive, but not too bad. Knitwise Yarn and Fiber Arts Gallery is in Nekoosa, and is run by Jane, who is awesome. The only downside is that I love Cascade 220, and she is no longer carrying Cascade. I started a scarf for my piano teacher, and grabbed Naturespun instead (which is also one of my favorites) but it's hard to adjust.

So that's what I have so far today. Hoping with more fiber goodness and books and less Facebook I will be updating more. I am actually taking a painting class tomorrow night through Park&Rec, so wish me luck!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The fruits of labor

So, fortunately for me, I have 2 community garden plots here at work. The wet beginning of summer was rough on my little cucumber plants, and their stalks are white and cut open. My boss thought maybe I had cutter worms. But today--YAY--I spotted cucumbers. AND zucchini on my big plant. Hooray!

I also have some peppers and tomatoes. So all is well, so far!


House news: Still no house news except pushed back and pushed back. We just pushed it another week. But our mortgage guy says we're "real close now". I'm just waiting for the other shoe to drop, and all this aggravation was for nothing.

Speaking of aggravation: I have mothers acting like children. I have a MIL who guilt trips my kids when they don't want to stay at her house. I have MY mother who yells at my youngest daughter (who, as you know, is a handful) and then tells her to tell me to text her. While I was at work. That was IT! I said to my 10 year old that grandma damn well knows my number, and she knows how to text. And I am not dealing with this at work.

Knitting news: Working on my stranded sock. Also working on the amulet shawl from the Shawl society.  I am so excited to get to the bead part. But I'm not there yet--lots of back and forth knitting the same two rows to go (which is actually just what I need right now).

Amulet Shawl

 So that's my life here.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

And life goes on...

Sometimes you find yourself in places you never thought you'd find yourself. Say...like back at your mom and dad's house?

Our first date for our closing was May 13th. Then it was May 31st. Then June 10th. Then June 17th. Then June 30th.  FINALLY, the painting was complete, the FHA inspection was passed and we were ready to go.  And then....

Then Quicken Loans threw us for a loop. If I can say one thing that anyone listens to, it is PLEASE DON'T GO THROUGH QUICKEN LOANS FOR ANYTHING.

They were stringing us along for a lot of things...asking for the same documents over and over again. My friend gave us some money, and they wanted the gift statement. And her bank statements. And her other bank statements. And then a letter that we drafted saying the nature of our close relationship and why she would give us this money. Just ridiculousness.

Then they pulled Brian's credit report again (Because the "process was taking so long"), and his score had gone down. Because we had been using the credit cards and leaving money in the checking account, like they told us to do.  When Brian said, "Well, it went down because of usage. I can pay down the balance, and the score will go back up." the response was "We're not credit counselors". When Brian asked if they ever use common sense, the response was, "I've been in the business for 11 years, and I've never been allowed to use common sense."

We ended up calling HUD to have them call Quicken to get us out of our loan, mostly because we felt like they were stringing us along to make us pay fees. Within an hour of our call to HUD, Quicken called to say they were "Not continuing with the loan".  We went online and found story after story just like ours.

In the meantime, we had to be out of our rented house.  So we moved everything we own into storage.  We are staying with our parents and commuting back and forth to work-no small feat, as my job is 2 hours from there.  BUT:

We are hoping it's temporary, as our realtor "knows a guy" who has started the FHA loan process. Fortunately our appraisals/inspections are maintained in the government database (See? Not all government databases=unmarked helicopters), but the bad news is it probably won't be until July 15th with the July  4th holiday in there.

So I am trying not to lose my crap, wondering when that is going to happen, and being really grateful for my desk at work and my little plots of garden, because they are mine.

TL;DR=Quicken sucks. We lost our financing and are nomadic, but we have new financing and hopefully will be in our house by July 15th.

Anyway, here is a flower from the garden at my hopefully-soon-to-be-mine house to make you happy:

I am knitting, sort of. I will take a picture of the sock I am test knitting when I get home and get it up here. I also have some DELICIOUS looking yarn from Jesseknits to start a MKAL, sock knitting style. So excited about this, but it's a surprise, so I can't show you pretties yet (Soon!)

Thursday, June 2, 2016


OK, so I haven't written in a while, and I wanted to make sure to do a small update. I have been (get this...) CROCHETING!  And it's frustrating.  I am trying to make this:

Cute crochet jellyfish, FREE pattern! | www.1dogwoof.com

Absolutely adorable, right?  I even figured out the magic circle (sort of...anyway, it works). But I can't seem to get the counting right. I keep ending up with one extra. I might just do the tails first, because I have attempted the head 4 times now and it just isn't coming out right.

We are in a holding pattern on the house, and we are stuck here with our terrible landlord. At least until June 19th, when we can't be here anymore. The original closing date was May 13th. Then May 31st. Then June 10th. Now "On or before" June 30th. Let's just say I kind of lost my crap on the latest addendum to the closing. I made the selling realtor cry. Which was not exactly what I wanted, but I needed someone to show me that they gave a crap that I'm terrified I'm going to be homeless.  The house has all the electricity on, and nothing is leaking as far as we know. But the house needs to be painted, and of course it's been raining for weeks. And when it's not raining, there's no painting going on.  So frustration and stress seems to be the story of my life.

In good news, Emily and Nick are done with school today, Anna graduated last Friday (although she still has work to do this summer to finish up):

and I am only working 3 days a week during the summer.  I am also coming up with cool stuff to do in the fall with the students, so I am hoping to generate some "job security" traffic into the library.

I'm also still plugging along on the Piece of Cake sock. Still a single.  

I picked up some patterns and some cool plaid fabric from Hancock (RIP--I'm going to miss that place SO much) to make some shorts. I'm hoping they turn out great, so I can just whip out a bunch of pairs.

So I'm hoping to have some great updates after we move, and maybe a new house renovation blog as well. (So I am not clogging up my sometimes knitting/sometimes family blog here.).

Happy beginning of summer!