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Back In The Act

It has been a few days since I have posted. I am sorry for my absence. But, to be fair, when you are feeling like you have just been hit by a steam-roller carrying a whole bunch of 'sick', you really aren't in the mood for much of anything. I had to FORCE myself to go the the computer each day, just to do school work. I am sure that my discussions were not all that wonderful, during the past few days. But, at least I made the attempt. I should get some credit for that, if nothing else.
This morning I woke up with a mild, but constant, headache. "Oh boy!Another day of COMPLETE MISERY!" This was one of the first thoughts that popped into my head. I made my way down the hallway. (When did our house start to slowly spin round and round? Who decided that was ok?) I poured myself a cup of coffee. And, I am happy to report that, probably half-way through the first cup, the headache subsided. I am now headache free...The way to be!
So, before I go any further in this entry, I would just like to say this. Last night seemed to last FOR-FRIGGIN-EVER! I mean, it was just INSANE! I woke up, at least 10 different times. And each time, I would look out the window, at the night sky, and think to myself: 'How could it POSSIBLY still be night?' During one of my later wake-up sessions, I actually put my face to the glass of the window, and REALLY looked outside. And, the sight was absolutely eerie.
We have this scarecrow that I made, a few years back. The clothes at this point are ragged. (I will probably have to make a new one this year.)It is propped between to GIGANTIC eucalyptus trees, about 10 feet from my window. And, I never realized how DAMNED creepy it is, until last night. There he was...Wearing his ragged plaid shirt, and mismatched camouflage pants. The sleeves of the tattered shirt were blowing in the wind. (I could see him PERFECTLY, because we have a dusk-to-dawn light, right outside my window, that shines on him.) And, I swear to God...I am not sure if this thing has EVER successfully scared a crow, but it sure as hell sent a chill up my spine. It looked like something from Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow.
Yeah...Getting back to sleep after this, was a bit of a challenge. And yet, in the day time, this scarecrow, though weather beaten, is the CUTEST FRIGGIN THING, ever! Note to self...The next time you make a scarecrow, put it out of window vicinity.
So...YARN!!!
Ok. First things first. I am currently working on a candy corn witch hat, which is reserved for snoglobel. I plan to have this particular hat finished, no later than tomorrow afternoon. Then, I will be starting another witch hat, which will be purple and black, reserved for adelheid_p. Let me just say, I am sorry that I got such a late start on these. I did not want to make them, while feeling under the weather. But, I have not forgotten about you guys. And, your hats will be ready in no time flat!
As far as personal crocheting projects...
Well, those of you who have read me for a while, may already know this. I tend to want to bite off more than I can chew. I am not happy, unless I am completely BOGGED down, with NUMEROUS yarn projects.
I am currently working on numerous afghans. There is the Granny Rectangle Afghan, the Winter Jewels Afghan, The Serape Afghan...And then I also have a Bow Knot Afghan, that I am making for myself. This particular afghan is just a 'go to, when you have a few extra minutes' sort of project.
Well, this morning, before coming to my blog, I went pattern hunting.
My nephew may be living with us, this Holiday Season. Unlike previous tenants, I am actually happy that this will happen. We get along, rather well. And, I decided that, since he might be here for Christmas, I need to work an afghan for him.
I decided that I wanted to work a scrap afghan for him. After all, I have a BOATLOAD of random yarn, in my stash. So, why not make a totally awesome afghan, and help clear out room for new yarn, all at the same time?
And this morning, while hunting, I found a pattern for a log cabin afghan. Now, the actual pattern only uses 4 or 5 yarns. But, I can easily picture this particular afghan look completely cool, worked in bunch of different yarns. So, tonight, I will start this afghan, and add it to my INSANE list of yarn to-do's.
So, there is the yarn talk of the day.
Physical Therapy:
Yesterday was my first day on the treadmill. My therapist told me that we were going to give it a try, and the first thing that popped into my head, was all those funny videos, that involve treadmills. You know, the person starts off doing really well. Then, they end up FLYING off the back of the treadmill, looking like a complete FOOL, and getting a cackle, out of everyone. Yup! That was gonna be me. I could already picture it.
Surprisingly, I did VERY well, on the treadmill. I did not lose my balance, even once. I went for about 8 minutes. (I know what you are thinking: '8 minutes! That's all?') By the time I climbed off, I was absolutely exhausted, and I had the rest of my workout ahead of me.
My appointment started at 9:30am. And, it did not end, until 12:15.I left, dizzy and tired. But, before coming home, I had to make a stop at this restaurant, that has the best damned nachos, I have EVER eaten. Because, let's be honest...After a workout, like I had just had, I needed to completely indulge myself, by having yummy nachos!
As for today...
Well, as I wrote above, I will work on the candy corn witch hat. Then, I have a few errands to run. I have to start reading chapter 5, of my text book. (By the way...Chapter 5, in itself, is longer than War & Peace.) And, just because I haven't been in a while, and I have some friends that are going to be there today, I may join my sweetie (for just a few hours) at the Moose Lodge. Then, I will end my day, with a totally relaxing bath, and another entry will find its way in my affirmation journal. (Just yesterday, I started working with a new affirmation. 'Everything I do turns into success.' Let's see what I can learn, from this affirmation, shall we?)
Well, that is it for today.
Until tomorrow...
Happy crocheting!

BLEH!!!

Two words...
Feeling sick.
I caught whatever my mom had.
Will be writing again, as soon as I feel better.

First Witch Hat, Now Up In My Shop

First off, I am so sorry that I did not get the chance to write yesterday. My mother is currently fighting off some sort of sickness, and so, I was playing the good son. I cooked, and cleaned. I set up the bathroom, with candles, and eucalyptus, and did just about everything else, to make sure she was as comfortable, as a sick person can be.
Today she is feeling a little bit better. So, that is good.
Big news! This morning (just minutes ago, in fact) I added a FOURTH item to my Etsy shop. The green and black witch hat is now up, and ready to be looked at, and hopefully purchased. Swing on by, you guys. Take a look. And, as always...Let me know what you think.
So, let's keep rolling here.
Last night, I FINALLY had the chance to get on the computer. So, I went straight to my student portal, to do some school work. All of my discussions are done, so I decided to take the quiz, for this week.
So...Let me ask you something here. Because really, I am very interested in why this even happens. I mean, to me, it just doesn't seem right at all. I am actually more than a little confused, by the whole thing.
Ok...Chapters 3 and 4 were the reading, for this week. No problem. I got through both chapters in a day. And, I had taken rather extensive notes. Sure, the chapters have to be read for you to do the discussions. But, wouldn't you think that the quiz at the end of the week, would, in SOME FRIGGIN WAY, reflect the text? I mean, doesn't that just seem as though it would make sense? You read the text, and you take good notes, so you have a good comprehension, and are able to study for future tests, right?
That's what I would think.
Apparently, the instructor for this particular course, has a different opinion than I do.
Ok...So, when you go to take the quiz, you are told that you only have one chance. Ok, that seems fair. And, you can only open the quiz once. There is no opening it, doing some of the questions, closing it, and coming back later. Still...That seems pretty fair, right? I had read the text. I had studied the notes I took. I was sure that I would ACE this friggin quiz.
Well, boys and girls...
The DAMNED quiz had ABSO-FRIGGIN-LUTELY nothing to do with chapters 3 or 4. Hell, it didn't even relate to chapters 1 or 2, for that matter. It was like the instructor created this quiz, to deliberately SCREW the students up. I mean, really!!! How the HELL am I supposed to know the answers to questions, THAT WERE NEVER FRIGGIN EVEN COVERED IN CLASS!!!
I am still trying to wrap my head around this. All I know is that, come tomorrow, I will be calling up the school, and asking what the deal is.
Because let me just tell you...A 70% is not OK by me. Not at all. And, the friggin worst part about it is that I am a GREAT student. I am busting my ass, and studying up a storm. But, when the quiz is about random shit , that isn't even discussed in class(in any way, shape, or form), well...HOW IS THAT EVEN OK?
I am MOST DEFINITELY NOT OK!
Ok, let's get off of the rant about school. Because just thinking about it is giving me a headache.
After finishing the hat, and doing all the housework that I could think of yesterday, I spent the rest of my time, working on stuff, for ME! First, I did a bit of work, on the Serape Afghan (also known as Mom's Christmas Afghan.)Then, I pulled out my Bow Knot afghan (the same pattern used to make my sister's birthday blanket), and I started work on that. I got about 5 rows done on it. If you will recall, I am making mine, using random scraps of yarn. It is super bright, super cheery. And, I just love it.
Apparently my sister, while telling me she loves the blanket, is not as in love with it, as I would have hoped for. In a phone call last night, she hinted that she was not all that gung-ho, on the loose stitchwork, for this particular pattern. Leave it to my sister, to ALWAYS speak the truth. Even when you really wish she wouldn't.  
I wanted her to FRIGGIN love, love, LOVE that afghan. And, hearing that, while it is nice, there are she wished were different...Well, it was actually devastating. First of all, I wanted to tell her that is is rude, to talk badly of a gift. Next, I wanted to tell her that, from now on, she can crochet her own damned blankets. It was actually upsetting. I mean, I put so much time and energy into that afghan, and she has had it for all of 2 weeks, and is already setting about finding things that are wrong with it.
Oh well... My family. Many of us tend to be outspoken, and EXTREMELY blunt. At times, this is not the best thing.
So, the agenda today...
I plan on going shopping for some more Red Heart Mexicana yarn. I was making a rectangular granny blanket for my aunt Dee, before she moved out. I have since continued working on it, and have decided that it will stay in the family. I have already gone throught about 5 skeins of yarn. And, while it is big enough to finish now, it is not quite big enough for my liking. So, I am going out today, and getting three more skeins. I went out to get them a few days ago, at Joann. Well...Imagine this. They don't have Red Heart, in this particular shade. Everywhere else seems to have...Just not them.
The plan for this afghan, is to get it a bit bigger, then end it with a final round, worked in purple.
One last thing here, before I go...
I am so happy to write this. I am practically beside myself, with excitemeny.
They are building a Hobby Lobby, right down the street, from the mall.  Yay..I will be just 10 miles away, from Hobby Lobby. Do you know what that means? That means that I will NEVER have to go, without candy corn yarn, ever again. Talk about doing a friggin happy dance. I did the mother of all happy dances, when I found this out.
Well...That is it, for today. time for me to go, and get my day started.
Happy crocheting, everyone.

Talk About Multi-Tasking

First off...
My mother is not feeling well. And, obviously, I feel for her. I mean, feeling icky is never fun. And, I know that the whole feeling, comes with this OVERWHELMING desire, to be a big old poop-head, to anybody, and everybody. I mean, if you don't feel good...then, dammit, why should you be forced to be pleasant? I understand that. Believe me, I understand...
But, just because I understand it, does not mean that I have to accept it. Seriously...My mom has been nothing, but a very snippy (Notice how I am keeping it kind) person, today. She is snapping at me, left and right. I am seriously thinking about crocheting a gag, and using it on her. At least then, I could get rid of the nastiness, flying out of her mouth. (Hello...She just about BIT MY HEAD OFF, because I didn't finish my second cup of coffee. Oh my God! How TERRIBLE! Michael left coffee in his cup! He must be executed, IMMEDIATELY!!!) Sweet Lord, it is a good thing I am not manic. I would need a FRIGGIN LIFETIME supply of Zoloft, after dealing with her, for the first  few hours of this morning.
Oh well...I am sure the next time I feel under the weather, I will be less than pleasant, myself. So, all is good.
Yesterday...
My sweetie spent yet another WHOLE DAMNED DAY, at the Moose. This makes it ONE WEEK SOLID, that the Moose has claimed my sweetie, from morning to night. I am, as I am sure you can imagine, less than thrilled over this. I mean, great! You have fun at the Moose. Awesome! Even I will admit that, at times, it can be fun. But, COME ON! When you spend every FRIGGIN waking hour there, what is left for your family? I mean, seriously? And, to make it even funnier, this is from the same person, who told me that I was spending too much time with yarn. HELLO!!! At least I can manage a few hours (or more) a day, with my family.
It is seriously getting to the point, where I am going to have to put my two cents in. And, I already know how that will go. I will be an 'unreasonable, uncaring ass', and everything I say will go in one ear, and out the other. Seriously, any conversation meant to resolve anything, seems to be shut down IMMEDIATELY!
Oh well...Moving on. (Because just writing about this, is giving me a headache.)
Damned being broke. Let me tell you how FRIGGIN much it sucks.
I was on Etsy yesterday, just cruising around, after posting the purse. And, I saw the coolest friggin terrarium. It is a completely closed terrarium, and has this whole fairy tale vibe going on. Needless to say, I absolutely love it! But, sadly...It is not meant to be.
Oh well...I have my own three open-topped terrariums, which are doing just fine. So, that is cool. I may, over time, experiment with making closed jar terrariums. What can I say? I absolutely LOVE these things. They are just so AWESOME!
In other news...
I will be finishing up the first witch hat, which I plan to post in my shop tomorrow. It is black, with a green band, and green eyelas yarn, at the edge of the brim. It is super awesome. And, it was such fun to make. And, for those of you who want custom made things, I am going to do them. I will let you all know when the items you ask for are done. I will be making two more witch hats, after finishing this one. First, I will a purple and black, with a bat, as asked for. And, I will also work a candy corn witch hat.
One final thing, before I go...
As most of you know, I have recently started keeping a handwritten journal. In this journal, I am working with affirmations. Each week, I will randomly pick a new affirmation, from the collection of cards, I printed out from online.
Anyway...
My current affirmation I am using is: Wealth pours into my life. I started working with this affirmation, this past Tuesday. And, as I had just set up my Etsy shop, I chose to take it as a good sign.
Yesterday, while writing, I began to see the numerous different types of wealth, I already have. And, I would to share them with you.
First, I talked about being wealthy, because of you guys. You all chose to follow me from my last blog. And, I am still so thankful over that. Just knowing that you all are out there, reading what I write, and that you cared enough to follow me to this new blog. Well, I consider this something that makes me wealthy. You all are such awesome friends. Thank you.
Then, there is the wealth of being able to walk. I mean, just years ago, I thought I was wheelchair-for life. Now, just look at me. Up, and walking around. If this isn't wealth, than I don't know what is.
Learning to work with yarn, is another thing that I feel fits here.
So, for that matter, is school. I have a wealth, of so many different opportunities, and talents.
And, I am wealthy because of my family. There is so much love. Sure, we fight, and bicker. But, at the end of the day, there is unconditional love. What more could anybody ask for?
Wealth. It is so easy to relate this word to money. And, by doing so, we limit its true defition. Wealth is having an abundance, of anything, in your life. And, there really are so many things, that I am wealthy in.
Now...if only I could win the lottery, I would have it made. =)
Well...That is it for today. I am going to go outside, and walk some laps. Then, I have a witch hat to work on. And, I also plan on working on my mother's Christmas afghan today...Even if only just a little bit.
Until tomorrow...

Happy crocheting!

Drumroll, Please

Man, oh man! I am FRIGGIN exhausted. I woke up, super early this morning. I had to finish another little goodie, which is now in my shop. Then, it was time for physical therapy. Oh, what fun! Not that I am against physical therapy, mind you. But, the air conditioner was totally OUT, the entire time I was in appointment. So, by the time I got out, I was a HUGE, SWEATY MESS!!! Talk about no good! A whole bunch of new excercises were thrown at me today. They were not exactly difficult exercises...Just new. And, by the time my two hour session was done, I was in serious need of a nap.
So, I came home, went to my bed, and got a little shut eye.
An hour later (give or take), I woke up, and got busy on my Etsy shop.
So far, three FABULOUS items, are up for sale. We have the two masks, that you all already know about. And, a cute little Fall Purse. Within the next couple of days, I plan to add more to my shop. But, I figured three items was a good start. I just hope that they sell.
So...I plan to create a banner for my Etsy shop, which I will fix to a post, that will remain at the top of my blog. But, until then, here is the link. Check it out, and let me know what you think.

http://www.etsy.com/shop/ADifferentYarn?ref=pr_shop
Honestly...
On one hand, even as I create these things, to add to my shop, I wonder if they will sell. Sure, they are good. I LOVE them. But, will other people love them? I guess all there is to do, is wait.
So...What else?
Well, after my physical therapy appointment today, my mother drove me to a moving sale. And, she bought me a BOAT-LOAD of yarn. For 10 bucks, I was able to score about 40 dollars worth of yarn. Not a bad deal, if I do say so myself.
So, my sweetie is at the Moose Lodge...Yet again. Go figure. It a day that ends with the letter "Y". And, this all the reason needed, for my sweetie to zoom to the Moose.
The funny part is...
I am kind of wanting to go today. Not for the drinks. And I certainly don't want to stay forever and a day, like my sweetie tends to. But, if I were to go, I could take some crocheted goods, and maybe generate some interest. You never know.
So, I think the next item that I will start working on tomorrow, will be a witch hat. I have black yarn, green yarn, and green eyelash yarn. I am sure that these, when brought together, could produce a totally rockin' witch hat. Just picture it. A black hat, with a green band. Maybe do a little bat, on the band...Perhaps a spider, or a pumpkin. Work a black brim. And then, at the end of the brim, work row, with the green eyelash yarn. I think that just sounds absolutely NIFTY!
As for school...
I am in the second week, of my third class. And, it is awesome. I am loving it. True, it is tiring. And, I often find myself worrying that, perhaps, my work isn't what the instructor was aiming for. But, so far...all is going great! I have a 95% so far. That is pretty friggin good. I really do need to get a laptop. Currently, I am stuck using the bulky desktop, in the office, right next to our living room. And, it seems that EVERY SINGLE TIME I get online, to do schoolwork, people feel as though they must SCREAM at the top of their lungs. Seriously! (Oh, what I wouldn't give, for my old laptop. I could go, and LOCK MYSELF AWAY! What a joy it was, to have Quiet Time, while on the computer.)
Ok...It is officially time to go. I am STARVING.  Ore-Ida fries and cheese...MMMM! There is no better way to satisfy hunger, than with food that is ABSOLUTELY wrong, in every way. So, I am off. Go, check out my Etsy shop guys...PLEASE! And, let me know what you think.
Until tomorrow!

Happy crocheting!

Feeling Very Honored

Yesterday, when I wrote my first post in this new blog, I was still feeling rather upset about having to say goodbye to my Project. The past few days have been very hard for me. And, in all honesty, I think it will be a very long while, before I am completely okay with what has happened. To get so far in my goal, only to learn that I have to stop early. Well...it is crushing, to say the least.
And, yesterday...Even as I posted the link to this blog, in my previous one, I thought to myself: 'Yeah. My readers, who have been so awesome with The Yarn Project, may not be willing to read a brand new blog.'  I hoped for the best. I hoped that all of you would take this new step with me. But, I prepared for the worst. 
I was totally stoked to see so many people follow me over, and give me such comforting words of encouragement. It was a much needed comfort, to see that all of you are ready to embrace this change with me. From The Yarn Project, to a brand new blogging adventure.
And, I am eternally thankful.
My sweetie has spent the last five days STRAIGHT, at the Moose Lodge. The schedule has been the exact same. Wake up early (unlike before, when my sweetie would not wake up until 10, at the earliest.) Take a quick shower, then go to the Moose, early in the morning. Spend all FRIGGIN day there. Then, at 8 or 9 pm...Sometimes even later, come home, and get ready to start the same thing all over again, the next day. Now, if the Moose was a paying gig, I would have NO problem with this. In fact, I would most likely encourage it. But, it isn't a paying gig...It is all volunteer. What this means, is that rather than go and look for a job, my sweetie will waste away the days, doing free work. Worse yet, the Moose Lodge, I have come to feel, is taking priority over family. This is very concerning. And, I am very close to being fed up.
Yesterday morning, before I went to my physical therapy appointment, I told my sweetie that I had decided to end The Yarn Project. "I really didn't have a choice. I need to start making things, to try to sell online." Even I could hear the devastation in my voice. I am sure that my less-than-sweet sweetie pie could hear it, as well. But, rather than offer support, sympathy, or even a helping hand, what was the response?
"Well, that's good. It is great, that you are going to do stuff, to try to help out."
Yup! Those were the exact words. I felt like screaming. Just go off, on a rant, and show a side of Michael that nobody has EVER seen before. Instead, I left for physical therapy, deeply upset.
Physical therapy, it turns out, was just what I needed. Two hours, of hard work. Stretches, playing ball, and lifting weights. By the time I left, I was too exhausted, to be pissed off. As for my walking...Using just one cane, is becoming easier by the day. It has only been a matter of weeks, and yet, I feel totally comfortable. I should also mention here, that my legs are starting to look more like the legs of a 29 year old man, and less like pencils. While still thin, there is definite muscle tone. No joke...My legs have actually doubled in thickness, since the casts were removed, in January 2010. And, weird as it may look, I often am feeling my own calf muscles. I will be out at a restaurant, and I will start running my hands over my calf muscles. I swear, people must think I am a big time freak. But, I can't help it. I mean, it is INSANE to think that, just earlier this year, those calf muscles were not there at all.
So...moving on. (I am sure you all do not necessarily care to read about calf muscle molestation any longer.)
Yesterday, I finished up two pieces, which I will be putting in my  Etsy shop (soon to come.)
I am currently working on a baby blanket, made from Red Heart Yarn. The color scheme is lavender and buff. It is very pretty, but I still have a bit of work to do, on it. So, yesterday, I took a break, from the baby blanket.
After getting home from physical therapy, I decided to work some Halloween treats, for my soon to be shop. After all, we all know how much I LOVE Halloween. (If, by chance, you did not follow my last blog, and are just new to me...I LOVE HALLOWEEN!!!) So, with Halloween in the near(ish) future, why not make some crocheted masks.
That is EXACTLY what I did.
First, I created a totally awesome Candy Corn mask. It is made from the Candy Corn Ombre yarn, from Hobby Lobby. And, I edged the entire mask with orange and white eyelash yarn. It is totally awesome. I just LOVE it.  Here is a picture of the candy corn mask.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/theyarnproject/6052711091/in/photostream
Next up, we have another mask, that I just adore. I have always had a HUGE thing, for the Phantom of The Opera. It has always been such a totally wonderful story. And so, that is the inspiration for this second mask, made with white acrylic yarn. This mask features  a black musical note, and a single red rose.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/theyarnproject/6052711103/in/photostream
I plan to make a few more masks, as well as some witch hats, and other Halloween goodies, as well as finishing up the blanket. But, there they are...The first two pieces, made for my soon-to-be Etsy shop. What do you think? Be honest!
Well...there it is. An entry down. I have to go get ready. We are going out for breakfast, and I am still in my grungy PJ's. I am not exactly sure they are appropriate restaurant attire.
Until tomorrow...
Happy yarning.

The Famous First Post

Ok...Most of you who read this first post are from my prior blog. I am aware of that. But still...I will abide by the 'standard blog rules' and do the whole First Post deal.
My name is Michael Leach. At the time of beginning this blog, I am 29 years old, and learning to walk. I spent 7 years in a wheelchair, and before that, I spent most of my life, with feet that turned in. I have never really walked normally before. In the fall of 2009, I went in for a MIRACULOUS surgery, that completely changed my life. It was a surgery to lengthen the tendons in my legs, which would finally give me the chance to walk...Eventually just like everyone else.
Earlier this year, I started physical therapy. Two times a week, I go in, for 2 and a half hours. By the time I leave, I want to do nothing but come home, and sleep. It is exhausting, but well worth it. During the course of my physical therapy, I have gone from requiring the use of a walker, to now using just one cane. Every single day, I cannot help but feel this overwhelming sense of wonderment. Just a few years ago, I thought I would be in a wheelchair, for the rest of my life. And now, here I am...walking. Sure, it may be slow. And, yes...It is still quite painful. But, you know what they say. No pain, no gain.
After my surgery, I felt the need to take up a new hobby. I wasted absolutely no time going about finding one. Enter working with yarn. Currently, I know how to crochet, which is something that I never thought I would know how to do. And, I also know that loom knitting is not for me, in any way, shape, or form. I have plans to learn how to knit.
I plan to open up an Etsy shop soon. In this shop, I hope to sell my crocheted creations, in an attempt to help support my household. Currently, I still cannot return to work. I have not been released, by my doctor, yet. And, I cannot see this happening any time in the near future. So hopefully, I can use the skills I have learned, and make a little extra cash, to help out.
Apart from learning how to walk, and learning how to work with yarn, I have taken on a third brand new adventure.
This past May, I began taking classes at Ashford University. I am an online student, starting the (very long) road, which will lead me to getting a degree in Journalism.
Walking...Yarn...School...
Yep! Talk about having a lot on your plate.
In future entries I am sure I will write in great lengths, about each of these.
Stay tuned...