Being happy doesn't mean everything is perfect.

It's learning to look past life's imperfections

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Progress…I don’t think so!

  About a mile down the road from us they built 2/3 huge subdivisions a few years ago.  Last year,  (because the city wanted all the tax revenue) that area & our property was absorbed into the city limits.  Since then we have received city taxes, water & sewage bill, trash bill….and all the road litter & trash that goes with “progress”.

This is what we have actually gained. A fire hydrant.  It would be nice but it’s not connected to any thing

hydrant 003We don’t get city water/sewage for another 6-9 months.  And that’s after we pay $1,500 to connect to the new city water pipes…after we dig & lay over 600 ft of our connection pipes (after we disconnect from our perfectly good ones) to the road.  Here is the CRAZY thing, when those connected to city water and sewage loose power, water and sewage shuts down.   In the 20 yrs we have lived here we’ve never lost water or sewage abilities with our septic system or rural water connection. 

We’ve lost all the county rural laws and gain all the city restrictions

So, Where’s the benefit!  Where’s the PROGRESS!!!

GRRRR…… ristlefrastlebrickkelbrack!!!!!!!!!

 This is the only progress I can see right now, Sliding in a quick (bad) progress photo for a customer.  A pair of lavender Capri’s.

Lav Customs 004

Starting on the legs, hope to complete them tonight!

Tell me something good about living in the city limits!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Finishing Frenzy!

I spent the day ‘Finishing”. Finishing all those ..(ok, not all of them) random projects laying about. I hate the finishing stuff it’s painful. Just let me knit, the ends I keep hoping will miraculously weave themselves in, the lanolizing and blocking…UGH! I do this to myself, get so far on one & start another project. So, In keeping with my “one word” thing I’m finishing them up. Just grabbing off the top of the pile and doing what needs done. So…..

A large Skirty & soaker I started this weekend. Ends in, lanolized and drying now. Its even listed in the Katidids Etsy shop!

Skirty 003

These medium shorties I knit last fall. Today I wove in the ends, made the tie & lanolized. Still need to list it though.pinks & shorties to list 008

Large shorties I finished last night, DONE!! Even listedMM 004

Another pair of Smalls (from this winter), ends, ties lanolized & blockedpinks & shorties to list 003

And they’re even listed.

I think there are about 5 more pair that need “finished”. I’m not looking or counting, when I complete a new I make myself grab 2 off the pile to finish. I’m tellin ya it’s painful all this finishing.

I’ll be glad when the piles FINISHED!!!

Please tell me I’m not the only one who does this!

Quiet Weekend Knitting

Not a lot going on this weekend.  Saturday I spent the day doing things around the house and of course knitting.  Mr Fix It spent part of Sunday at Top Of the Hill 3D Archery .   Kent & Janet have become wonderful friends. They have such a beautiful farm and it makes a great day out to go visit them.  Any time of the year is beautiful with the foliage & hills.  The Archery course they set up is designed for all levels with a lot of fun targets. 

I worked on a pair of custom longiesgray longies new dye 012 A nice dense merino I dyed to a rainbow with gray trim & pocket.  These will be on the way to Alaska to a Military Mama as soon as they are dry.  I’m dyeing the wool for another pair for her & also a few hats & fingerless mitts for her children.  I always worry I’ll get the colors right for customs but so far we’ve had a kind of mind meld across the miles that has worked!

I’ve been looking at some of the Michael Miller fabrics like these  here & here  that are so popular, trying to come up with a few coordinates in wool

MM 020 Chocolate with Orchid trim Shorties are the start.  They use traditional color combos but so many of the designs although beautiful, are not colors you would think to pair. I still have to get them listed to the Katidids Etsy shop…. I think something with olive next…..

I have another pair of shorties drying and a skirty on the needles now, no photo’s yet but maybe tomorrow.

Most of the snow has melted and everything looks dirty~that transitional time that is just yucky, you can tell the soils just itching to pop some green!

I think maybe I’ll start some seeds this week!

What have you been up to?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Starting the Spring/Summer Chore list

How many times in the fall have you looked at something  and said “Oh, we were going to paint, move redo or do this” this summer…Well, grab a note pad and start writing them down ! snowfeb 005

All the projects you want to do, even those that seem or  sound silly to write down.  See this wood pile? There are 2 that look like this..A little thing that is driving me craZy!  I love to look at the snow but I don’t want to be out in it so first semi warm day, I’m restacking it.  Yes I know Mr.Fix-it would do it but, it’s something  I can do which saves him for other things like…..enclosing the carport for a 2nd bathroom and moving the laundry room up from the basement. Oh and A STUDIO FOR MEEEEEE!  OK, enough there or I’ll never stop..

Anyway, list your projects out &  supplies needed.  It helps for budget & planning.  You’ll be able to watch for sales to purchase items needed & possibly do a bit of prep work ahead of time. Also preparing a supply list helps you be aware of great deals for trade or “found “ items.  For example, an older person we we know just moved into a new home & replaced the standard toilet with a elevated one.  We have a new/free toilet for the new bathroom!  Someone we know said “OH, That’s just gross!”  Well, if its basically new & I would have used it while visiting its good enough for my house!

So, the start of my summer chore list, in no particular order:

1. Clean out pond drain

2. Thin the Lilies & Hosta around the pond

3, replace lattice  on deck end

4. replace lattice on crawl spacesnow! 15feb 003

5. Power wash back deck

6. Stain Deck

7. Build stairs to patio

kids&rabbits 016

8. Plant Garden

9. Plant Herb Garden

10.  Spring pruning

11.  Install a clothesline

12.  Build frame for blackberries

13.  Remove gross dark paneling from the living room & hall

14.  Pull carpet from living room & hall

15.  Install hardwood to living room & hall

16.  Replace window sills in living room & bedroom 1 & 2

17.  Remove gross green fake wood paneling from bedroom #1

18.  Enclose carport for bath, laundry & studio & add new entry to living room

19.  Shelves stored in the garage to basement for canned goods

20.  Arbor between house & garage for shade

21.  shampoo family room carpet

22. repaint living room

23.  repaint kitchen

24. repaint bedroom #1

25.  Garden & Can

Yep, it looks like we’re in for a busy summer!  We have been planning the addition for the past 2 years, slowly gathering quite a bit of the supplies.  The deck stain we purchased last year on sale, the lattice we are waiting to go on sale.  We’ll replace it before I stain the deck so it all matches.  Paint I’ll wait for a good sale & pick up to have ready….& I need to add carpet edging for the bedrooms to the list when we pull up the hall carpet….

I think I need a larger note pad!

The Projaholics are back!

What are your plans for the summer?


Friday, February 19, 2010

Custom Knits in Progress

Playing in the dye pots last week I was trying to come up with a Gray rainbow for a custom order. 

new multi 003

I’ not to sure these longies have enough Gray but, we’ll see how Mom likes them!

Shorties to stock 031 I have about 2 inches left to go on the legs & a pocket to add. If Mama likes them they will be on the way to Alaska! 

So you see the white in the photo above?  That’s still snow.  About 4-6 inches are left on the the ground.  But, Today I saw something that has been missing for weeks!

THE SUN!!!! 

Flour Sack Give Away

Recently I found this fun blog, “Children Are A Blessing From God” A fun blog about family & frugal life. Any way, she currently has a give away for a flour sack! I love the history that is behind them and the thousand uses they have had in the past. Any way pop on over, enjoy a good read and tell her I said Hi!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

New Love, New Blackberry Cobbler Recipe & New Knits!

  Crazy bird was deemed crazy by the bird people also!I’m not sure what they will do with her as she got out of their cages also.

But, Little Bird has a  new love.

Pink Longies & Snow 004This ones a sweetie, they get along great and I think they will become a pair not just cage mates 

We celebrated Valentines a day early by going out to supper and  then to see the  5 Browns in concert.  Siblings, all classical pianists that are currently touring the US. & we were able to see them at the Ogle Center at IUS.  Steinway hauls and sets up the the 5 Steinway piano’s where ever they go.  It was magic!  If you have the opportunity to to see them don’t even think about it go!

I broke out the guarded Blackberries to make a Valentine cobbler for Mr.. Fix-it.

Took less than 15 minutes to put together

custom 003

1/2 c. butter
1 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. sugar
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. salt
2/3 c. milk
1 (16 oz.) pkg. frozen blackberries, thawed  (I used 3 cups fresh  frozen )

Melt butter in a 2 quart casserole. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and milk in a small mixing bowl, mix well.

Pour mixture over melted butter, do not stir. Spoon blackberries over batter; do not stir.

Bake at 350°F. for 45 minutes or until golden

A scoop (or 2) of ice cream & it’s Pan lickin good!

And of course there has been some knitting…

A pair of large Longies, I LOVE this Blue Marl, super soft and snuggly!

Blue Longies 008

The next 2 are customs for an Etsy OrderNew Customs 012

An extra LargeNew Customs 006

and a medium. Being lanolized as we speak and will be in the mail on Friday!

We still are buried in snow, nothings melted and I’m avoiding going out as much as I can….It’s a good enough excuse to make chocolate chip cookies!

What have you been up to this week!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Brrr..8 more inches of SNOW!

I took this photo right before 6 am…..dawn, any other day you would need a porch lightPink Longies & Snow 013 Pink Longies & Snow 014 It was so light out I thought I had slept in

snow! 15feb 006

Back of the house

8 Inches on top of 10 from the other day..And more called for the next 2 days

Mr. Fix it bought this suit in 81 snow! 15feb 013 for his cold weather motorcycle rides, now, he uses it for

Now, he uses it for other rides..I love a frugal man!

snow! 15feb 018

like plowing the driveway…with a snow plow he rigged to the 4 wheeler

snow! 15feb 023Hmm, not sure my blueberries or blackberries will survive this snow fall.

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Saturday, February 13, 2010

When Birds go Wild

They go back to the store! I’ve met my match…I give up! Last year Erika brought home a friends bird when they lost power in a ice storm….well the bird never went home so, I have a Parakeet. Did you catch that? She brought it home but I have a another bird? Which is fine I’ve mentioned before I have a Pionus Parrot “Papuga” another was not an issue. Besides, after Isaiah named him “Little Bird” I knew I was sunk. The parakeet came with a nice stand & cage, everything we needed. This past week I decided to get a companion for him thinking he would be so much happier.


So, after looking for a while at all the parakeets available, I just couldn’t decide. I wanted an different color but, all of the parakeets we saw were just so much larger than Little Bird.

Customs & Snow 004 I wanted one closer to his size, so he wouldn’t get bullied and, those that I did like had paired with another bird already. (I just couldn’t separate them) My bird lady said. “well, I do have one in the back” a baby, pink & gray….I fell in love. So cute! Customs & Snow 006 Cutie right? This is the bird from HELL!!!

I now know why she was in the back!!!! She’s nuts! All the bird cages in this house and there is not one that will contain her!

birds 012

Look at those tiny bars! She is like a squeegee, she spends her time PUSHING her way thru the bars! So after 5 times of putting her back in the cage we got Papuga’s small travel cage out…smaller bars..the smallest I can get.. She's psycho birds 026birds 028 She forces the bars apart and out she goes!

Little bird chirps like crazy telling on herbirds 023birds 029

The blanket partially over the cage seems to calm her down but she’s a mess! It’s like she just goes crazy and is frantic to get out. Little bird just sits back and watches the show & gives me looks as if to say she’s nuts take her back! PLEASE!

I’ve never returned a pet before but, I can’t deal with a psychotic bird. One thing I do know, if my bird lady says “ I have another one in the back”…

I’m going to laugh at her!

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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Gotta Do, Gotta Learn Lists & Of course a bit of Knitting!

One of the many things I have on my “Gotta Do, Gotta Learn” list is to find recipes for make ahead seasoning mixes. You know what I mean, those little packets of spaghetti, chili, taco, & herb mixes prepackaged, great time savers but full of all kinds of stuff we don’t need to be eating. Yes, I can make a good spaghetti or chili sauce without them but, they come in handy in a rush. But, they realllllly add up. I’ve been meaning to find recipes to make my own & spoon out as needed. Well, great minds think alike! I stopped in at a ” new to me” blog “A Home Grown Journal” and she has posted a recipe for a Taco mix! One down and a dozen or so to go! Be sure and check out her quilting blog, the quilts are just beautiful!

I finished up the Flirting Fairy Large Capri’s

capri's 016I used some of my BFL stash. If you ever have the chance to knit with BFL wool, do it! you won’t be sorry. Its super soft and silky, doesn’t pill & is sturdy as all get out and will hold up to rough & tumble toddlers.

I started a pair of Silly Stripe custom longiescapri's 019 Bright Pink with Wine & Light Pink Stripes.I have the first set of stripes completed now & am just waiting for feed back from the customer.
So, Of course while waiting I dug in the stash & started another pair. No photo but these will be a Large pair of 2 tone Blue Marl

Someone asked me the other day, “Don’t you get tired of making longies?” Well, NO! Each one is so different. I try not to duplicate any color combination so each pair is always like a new item. I know it may sound silly. It’s like quilting..you may make numerous split rail fence quilts but using different fabrics each one is “new”. I am checking into the licensing for a few other patterns. I should have some news on those in the next few days.

Stay warm out there!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snow Days & Knitting!

Well for once the weather man was right on the money!snowfeb 004 They called for 3-6 & we got 6snowfeb 005 Then through the day we got a bit moresnowfeb 006

We ended up with almost 10 inches. More to come today & tomorrow! The road crews have done an awesome job keeping the highways and side roads plowed & drive-able. I love the crisp crunch sound of walking in snow, & the heavy silence that comes with it.

I did complete this pair of medium shortiesshorties 021 & have them listed to the Etsy shop

A pair of Forest Fairy Carpi’s are also done all but weaving in the ends, I’ll have photos of those tomorrow. Right now I’m working on a pair of silly stripe customs. I love the color combinations Mama’s come up with!

So, what are you working on?

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Small Changes

Just one thing at a time,

I been looking at changes we’ve made this year in life style, choices & decisions of how we want to live our lives.

Most have been small & subtle, just one thing at a time. When we first started talking seriously about making the changes to live a self reliant/simplistic lifestyle & what they would be, it didn’t seem like we had that far to go. We’ve never been a family that uses box or prepared meals. We have tried a few in the past & were never satisfied with the end result, always adding a bit of this or that for flavoring & we could FEEL our bodies reacting to the MSG. So for us the simplistic changes have been minor.

One decision we have made is to change our food storage from plastic to glass bits at a time. I’m not actively running out and replacing everything at once but, using what I have or find around the house for starters.glass jars 003Even my favored Cream of wheat cereal is stored in mason jars & flours in larger glass containers. If your like me you have an entire cabinet devoted to plastic storage containers. Containers that breed like laundry & not a lid that fits to be found. I’ll be glad to eliminate that cabinet mess.

After reading up on the serious health risks and, the last post of Throw Back at Trapper Creek we’ve gotten pretty serious about clearing it out.

But, take a walk in the isles of a mainstream grocery store. Have you noticed how many of the foods purchased now come in plastic? Peanut butter, syrup,MILK, butter, beans, lettuce, carrots, meats…ketchup, mustard, cheese.its everywhere! And them you have margarine which basically IS plastic. Its hard to find items sold in glass jars anymore!

I can’t say we will we’ll be able to clear it all out but, we can start with controlling what comes into the house & work to replace what is already here. Moving forward, changing one thing at a time.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Out My Window This Morning

We didn’t get as much as they called forsnow 009 Just enough to be beautifulsnow 010 and slow your day up a bitsnow 004 A good day for bread bakingsnow 006 Soup makingsnow 008and Knitting!

Stay warm & safe where ever you are!

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Friday, February 5, 2010

I’m In A Etsy Treasury!!


Check it out here!

blue longies 008These are the longies that were featured. As soon as I figure how to copy & post the full page I’ll put that up!

So my skills at this are sadly lacking but….

What a awesome collection of

IndianaTreasury Artists!

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Plotting & Planning

New works in progress, well the same pair I’d started on the last post.  I think these want to be board shorts with a pocket…not to sure we’ll see.  I hope to have them listed to The Katidids Etsy by tonightnew 004

With all the de-crapification I’ve switched things to spring mode Hence the eye popping table cloth.  I love bright colors and its a good mood booster. Especially after these past few sunny days & snow melting.   I see green grass poking through down by the pond….and now they are calling for 3-6 inches of snow…after 4 hrs of rain.  The roads will be like a skating rink tomorrow.  Think I’m staying home!

I’ve been trying to plan out the new garden &  want to switch a few things I was doing, such as row planting, some I will continue but others I’ll go with double row to make better use of the space, others I’ll incorporate the square foot gardening method.  I’ve been reading a bit about using decaying leaves in the walk ways to cut down on weeds & act as a natural mulch. With the woods behind the house we have a never ending supply of leaves!  If you’ve done this I’d love to hear how it worked out.   I also intend  switching up where I had some veggies planted for better sun and space usage. 

Also need to start an herb garden and possibly a “tea” section for my oldest daughter.  She’s the black sheep tea drinker in this long line of coffee java junkies, freak jonesing addict loving family!  But, we don’t hold it against her…much.

So many plans, I just don’t want to attempt to much at once & need to finalize plans & decisions soon to get seeds ordered.  I just need to make some decisions…so many seeds so little time!

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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Making Progress & Longies stocking

Whew, I stink!  Its been a busy day.  Kitchen walls are scrubbed & I found the corners of my bedroom today!  Floor to ceiling de-cluttered & cleaned.  When all the crap stuff is out it’s a big room!

One Word is WORKING!  Yes, its only been a few days but, that’s progress for me!

I was beautiful today. Bright sunshine & Low 40’s, I had the doors & windows open as I was cleaning, almost felt like spring…as long as I kept moving LOL!

Need to go visit my new friend at goodwill with another carload.  Now really who needs 22 handbags!!!!! Some are from the early 90’s!

Seriously, get a grip Katie! OK I’m over it!

Family room is next when I get home tomorrow. (Enter theme from JAW’s here)  & Mt. Laundry is crumbling!

I did get a few things finished up 2 feb 017 2 feb 006 2 feb 010 2 feb 015 Everything is listed to Etsy !

I have another on the needles YES! That’s right JUST ONE PAIR!! (started recently)

One Word again…

I’ve been trying to finish up other projects in between. Think I could open another Etsy shop with just with all the projects I have working…I keep telling myself it doesn’t matter what was, its what will be that counts. Changing can be painful but I keep looking at the room and cleaned out spaces.

I’m LOVIN it!