Do it like it ain’t been done

SQUEAL!!!!!!!! I finished my scarf! Forget the ‘knitting projects’ section. This belongs at the beginning. 😉 I’m wearing it out tomorrow and here it is……

chunky scarf
chunky scarf
done!!!
done!!!

This was my first real attempt at weaving in the ends and I think I did okay. If it falls apart then obviously I still suck at it. This scarf was so easy to make and I loved knitting it. Maybe one day I could make some for charity?..once I get better at weaving in the ends. It would be great to make matching hats and scarves but I’m bad at making hats. I plan to get better very soon (see below).

———

Now onto serious business. I read the book Write it Down, Make it Happen a decade ago. It is one of my favorite books and it changed my life. I can’t say that about many books. This past week I wrote down some short term goals I would like to accomplish in my paper journal. I’ll share the not so personal ones here. When people are posting their resolutions for 2015, I’ll link back to this entry. I don’t do New Year’s resolutions. #1 I hate holidays. #2 Why not start NOW? I didn’t wait until January to stop eating red meat and pork. I wanted to start ASAP. #3 The stats show they don’t work. So why bother?

Here are my goals I’m starting now (with a couple left out):

Work:

  • Have set hours. I’m going to try to stick to 5:30 to 3:30 with the hopes of eventually working 8 hours a day.
  • Do 60% of my work before lunch.

Exercise:

  • I’m going to be realistic with this one: Go to the free gym once a week. When it gets warmer, this goal will change. But for now I would like to walk 2-3 miles on the treadmill and if/when the gym is empty do weight lifting. (The gym is often empty – except in January. lol)

Practicum

  • Do my practicum 3 days a week – Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. 45 minutes a day.

Knitting

  • Finish my shawl.
  • Finish my hat I’m “working flat”.
  • Start a cardigan.
  • Start fingerless gloves
  • Make a hat in the round.
  • Start an afghan using at least two different colors.

Reading

  • Finish 35 books between now and December 2015. I would like to say read everyday but with everything going on that probably won’t happen. My practicum and other things are more important. I used to easily read 50 books a year.

Guinea Pigs

  • Stay on top of keeping their cage clean.

That is pretty much it. Now that I think about it I should probably include getting out of debt or some money goal. I’ll add that to my paper journal later.

Weekly

Music for the week: Taylor Swift, Jessie J, Mary Lambert, Tristan Prettyman, Ellie Goulding, Ariana Grande, Lori McKenna, Train, Sia

I’m pleasantly surprised by Mary Lambert’s and Tristan Prettyman’s albums. I think Tristan said she recorded hers in TWO weeks. I was expecting something boring but it is pretty great. Taylor’s album had to grow on me. I’ve listened to it more than a dozen times. She spent two years on it. I was expecting something better. I would love if she did an acoustic version of 1989. (pleasepleaseplease) The acoustic snippets she included were damn good. The album is way too pop and I like pop.

TV for the week: Big Brother Australia, Army Wives, NBA basketball (yay! it’s back).

Movie of the week: none

Books of the week:  Beyond Belief: My secret Life Inside Scientology and My Harrowing Escape by Jenna Hill  & Lisa Pulitzer

Knitting projects of the week: Now that I’ve finished my scarf, I need to work on finishing my shawl. I want to start my cardigan but I have to buy the yarn first. The total cost of the yarn I want to use is about $30 (cheap by many people’s standards but not mine!)

Triangles are my favorite shape

My Las Vegas posts are over. Should I write about the fire? The range on my stove is broken. DUNZO. The fire was one of the scariest moments of my life. I’m used to living in fear 95% of the time but this fear was definitely different. If it were my house, I don’t think I would have been as scared but I’m renting! I can’t let his house burn down.

The day before, I left the burner on for an hour after I finished cooking. The house was filled with smoke and I didn’t even notice. Oh yeah, I am getting a smoke detector. For some reason my landlord took down the smoke detector that was in this house. Anyhow the next day, I tried to cook with the same burner and it didn’t come on. Oh fuck, I thought. But I just used the other burner. Three minutes later, there was a fire. At first when I threw water on it, it seem to get bigger. That is when I became terrified. I was about to call 911 but then I threw a container of water on it and the fire was gone.

So I have to get a new stove. 😦 It costs $340. Since the oven is still working, I’m not rushing it. I brought a portable single burner which will probably annoy me but it is better than nothing. I’m using it for the first time tomorrow.  I will try to get a new stove within 6 months. If it weren’t for Vegas, I probably would have had it installed this week. Bummer. Oh well.

Weekly

Music for the week: Jessie J, Britney Spears, Mary Lambert, Ariana Grande, Aretha Franklin, Ellie Goulding, Lori McKenna, A Fine Frenzy

Taylor Swift’s 1989 leaked. Guess what I’m doing for the remainder of the weekend? 😉 I’m so glad I don’t shun or hate pop music. I love it. I devour it (and spit it out if I hate it).

TV for the week: Big Brother Australia, Army Wives

Movie of the week: The Fault in Our Stars 

Good movie. I enjoyed the characters not being desperate to be in love. That is so tired in movies. I’m watching it again right now for the second time.

Books of the week: I finished  Still Alice by Lisa Genova. It was good but not great. Now I’m reading  Beyond Belief: My secret Life Inside Scientology and My Harrowing Escape by Jenna Hill  & Lisa Pulitzer and Living in the Land of Enough by Courtney Carver

Knitting projects of the week:

I’m almost done with my scarf –

vegas  scarf
vegas scarf

I made two mistakes on this shawl within a 24 hour period. I don’t think think I’m giving up…..yet.

damn shawl
damn shawl

Now I’m going to listen to Taylor Swift’s new album for the first time. I don’t know why I’m so excited. I don’t like all her stuff but the reviews are pretty good so far. Music is my life.

Vegas: been there. done that.

This is just a quick entry going over a few things that happened in Vegas. I will have 1-3 Vegas posts later (with pics!)

First things first. I did so much walking on Tuesday and Wednesday that by Wednesday night I had to get a taxi back to my hotel. (I made it to New York, New York’s taxi stand). That might not sound horrible but that also meant that I couldn’t walk hardly anywhere on Thursday. I tried to catch the bus to the Fashion Show Mall because I knew there was no way I could walk there but the bus costs $6.00 for two hours. I only had $4.00 cash on me so no TopShop for me. Woe is me.

My feet/legs still have not recovered. If I ever go to Vegas again, I’m going to have to rent a scooter. That might be my #1 reason I never go back there. My other reason I won’t go back there is…..

MONEY. Vegas is for people with money. It disgusts me (not people with money…Vegas). I know that sounds extreme but I just don’t like a place like that for a “vacation”. That’s not how I roll.

Britney Spears. She didn’t half ass the show like she did on October 11th. I was so worried about that. But she was ON and she was happy. To see her happy, made me happy. I don’t think Britney is good at faking it. When she is having a bad day, she sucks at her job just like normal folk. I can’t say I never mailed it in. at work… ::coughFridayBeforeVegascough:: I do feel bad for the fans that traveled to Vegas just to see her and then she just half asses it. Those fans don’t care about The Bellagio or gambling. They come from all over the world just to see her show and then they get a spiritless Brit. That sucks.

More on Britney later.

Oh, I did gamble. FUCK. Worst decision ever. I didn’t know it was so easy to gamble in Vegas. I thought it would be intimidating. Uh, not at all. I easily found spots all to myself to gamble.  I only spent about 15 minutes actually gambling but I did walk around casinos quite a bit. It is impossible to NOT walk through a casino there. I spent  wasted about $27 and won 85 cents (lolz). The second time I was desperately trying to win money so I could take the bus to the Fashion Show Mall.

Overall the trip was okay. The leg pain limited me A LOT. If I had to rank vacation destinations, I would go:

  1. Oaxaca City, Mexico
  2. Virginia Beach, Virginia
  3. NYC
  4. Las Vegas

NYC can be expensive but for me it wasn’t that bad because I found a once in a lifetime hotel deal at The Kimberly Hotel (only a half mile from 5th Avenue). No one could ever get that deal now. They have upgraded all their rooms and nothing is affordable. It is 5 star PLUS now. In New York, you can easily find cheap food and even affordable shopping. In Vegas, it is harder to find affordable stuff on The Strip….if you want the Vegas experience.

One more thing: The Elara hotel was great. I would only stay there. It is mid-strip.  (location, location, location) It has great views. I cannot recommend this hotel enough. More on that too.

I know everyone (ha) has one thing on their minds. How far did you get on your scarf? Well, I couldn’t knit on the plane like I thought I would be able to. OMG. 3 out of 4 of my flights were full. This is only my second airplane experience. My first one I flew on SIX planes (roundtrip) to Oaxaca City, Mexico. and none of the planes were full so it wasn’t that bad. Dude, at this point I never want to get on a plane again. I’m sure I will get over it. But being stuck with no way to get off on a crowded plane….it wasn’t pleasant. I just sat there and closed my eyes. BORING.  I knitted at the airport and in my hotel room (when I couldn’t walk anywhere).

Here is my scarf so far:

vegas scarf
vegas scarf

I’ll be back with Vegas pics later. I’m still sick. I got a second cold on Wednesday without fully recovering from the first one. I think I got sick because I stupidly left the AC on all night. It was freezing. Duh.

Something in the Water

Three high school football players died this week. How can I justify watching college football when kids are dying in high school? I can’t. I’m done with both pro and college football. I will miss football Saturday but it isn’t worth it. I know better. I knew better than to start watching it again but I justified it because I missed it. No more of that. I’m done.

Onto lighter subjects….

Vegas in 10 days

Look at my mostly packed suitcase:

are we there yet?
are we there yet?

It is so tiny.  I don’t want to check any luggage so I’m taking my small carry on. I also have a huge purse. I am buying gifts for family and I’m a little concerned about space for those items. I’m not planning on buying much for me. My budget will probably go towards food. 😉 I sooo can’t wait. I have been working 6 days a week ALL of September (including Labor Day) so I want a break NOW. Well Thursday and Friday were pretty decent. I didn’t feel as stressed out and I got a lot accomplished. Hopefully next week goes smoothly and then….a week off in Vegas. Yes!

I have typed out a revised itinerary on my kindle. Don’t worry, I won’t share it here but I did include more downtime. I think I will need it.

Weekly

Music for the week: Ariana Grande, Mary J. Blige, Britney Spears, Ellie Goulding, Melissa Etheridge, Lori Mckenna, India.Arie, Patty Griffin

I made a playlist with Patty Griffin and Lori McKenna. I can’t tell the difference between them. I’m probably late to this observation…The new Melissa Etheridge is worth a listen if you are a fan.

TV for the week: Big Brother Australia

I am already hooked on this show! Buddha help me. My faves are Cat and Katie. 🙂

Movies of the week: I have to amp myself up to watch a movie these days. Nothing this week.

Books of the week:  I finished Devil’s Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three by Mara Leveritt. Not only were the police corrupt (I expect that) but the judge was unbelievable. I have never read about a trial like this and I read true crime all the time. It sickens me that the real murderer got away with this crime. The police need to reopen the case as a cold case.

I’m taking one or two real books AKA paper books with me on the plane. I can’t decide between  two books. If I have room, I’m taking both. My options are Still Alice by Lisa Genova  and Beyond Belief: My secret Life Inside Scientology and My Harrowing Escape by Jenna Hill  & Lisa Pulitzer. Both are kind of heavy books but I know I will enjoy both. Still Alice will be hard to read because my grandmother currently has Alzheimer’s.

On my Kindle, I have a bunch of books I haven’t read yet. I’m not excited about any of those books so I will probably stick to 3D books.

Knitting projects of the week: This shawl will kill me. The more rows I add, the longer it takes to complete. This thing is driving me nuts. I spent more time reading then knitting this week so not much progress.

 

shawl
shawl

Goals for the weekend: Saturday will be busy. I’m working from 5AM – 10AM. Then I have to take my dog to her “spa” appointment. (I’m not paying for it). Then errands, errands, errands. Hopefully on Sunday I can stay in. Goals? Cook for the week. Clean up. Rest, relax. Fuck it. 😉

I don’t need to live by your rules

I probably disagree with 70% of what Mayim Bialik says and thinks. But I have to agree with her 100% on the movie Frozen.

Well, I have to speak the truth: My sons and I did not like “Frozen.”

When we first saw it, I thought it was just me who didn’t like it and I had to stop myself from audibly exclaiming, “What!?” when things did not make sense and I rolled my eyes a LOT and felt bad that they might be enjoying it and here I was, Scrooge-ing away. But then the truth came out. They didn’t like it. Phew. Dodged that bullet.

…..Sure, it’s sort of hidden, but the search for a man/love/Prince is still the reigning plot line in the movie, as it is with pretty much all movies for young people which are animated. The sister’s desire to marry this guy she just met, and the other sister getting mad at her–we still have a plot about the identification of a woman being based on her desire and search to meet a man.

Of course, in general, in the Universe, heterosexual women tend to want to meet men and I am one of those women. My issue is not that. My issue is that this is a movie geared to small children who I don’t think need to be focusing on that as the main driving plot of a movie, especially when it’s not a literary or historically-based fairy tale. And these characters are young; certainly not old enough in my socially conservative opinion to be searching for mates!

I’ve had just enough already with this finding a man business in most every kids’ movie. Disney classics were all about this and look where it’s gotten us! Naked billboards of singers and women still not paid equal pay for equal work and ridiculous standards of beauty and body image and campaigns such as “Why I Don’t Need Feminism” and tons of other things proving we still have a ways to go.

Am I taking this all too seriously? Of course I am! That’s because I’m me!

(Read Mayim’s full post here) The only difference for me is that I find it pathetic when adult movies are the same way. I think the directors/writers/producers are “dumbing” down movies with the whole ‘girl must get the guy at the end’. And that is why I don’t like most movies these days. If I made a movie, it wouldn’t rate highly because there wouldn’t be any of that in it. But I’ll leave the movie making to my sister. She isn’t famous for making movies. She does short films on the side when she isn’t working her day job or traveling the world.

Enough about Frozen. What about me? 😉 I’ll be in VEGAS IN 25 DAYS!! YAY. I have changed my itinerary and will post an updated version later. I’m so thankful for the people on youtube explaining how Vegas really is. I needed a reality check. I will also post a link to those videos when I do my post.

Weekly

Music for the week: Ariana Grande, Ellie Goulding, Sam Smith, Train, Mirana and The Diamonds, Counting Crows, Lea Michele, Demi Lovato

TV for the week: Big Brother, Homeland, Army Wives, The Chair

Army Wives isn’t very good. I’m going to keep watching to see if I change my mind. I’m fascinated by The Chair. I binged watched 5 episodes. I can’t keep watching because I don’t have Starz at home. 😦
Re: Big Brother – Derrick has played a flawless game so far. Flawless. Assuming he makes it to the final two, he will win. No doubt. I’m bummed that Victoria only made it that far because she doesn’t win any comps but whatever (girl power?). I enjoyed this season.

Movies of the week: None so far

Books of the week: Devil’s Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three by Mara Leveritt

It’s none of my business what you thing of me by Peter Baksa

The Declaration of you by Michelle Ward and Jessica Swift

Knitting projects of the week: My shawl is getting bigger! It is taking forever to knit this thing. I thought I could finish before Vegas but now I’m not so sure. I’ll try.

shawl

Here is the yarn I’m taking with me on the plane. Love this yarn.

plane project
plane project

I’m making a chunky garter stitch scarf. I will be on 4 planes for 14 hours (roundtrip). I’ll read half of the time and knit half of the time.

Goals for the weekend: Mow the whole lawn on Sunday (doubtful). Read at least 100 pages of Devil’s Knot. Knit my shawl. Work on Saturday. Spend at least an hour on my practicum. I have fallen behind with that. I need to get my head back in the game.

I’m still going strong with the #NoRedMeat (or pork) diet.

desires of the heart never stay the same

Confession: I sort of hated Joan Rivers…until I saw her documentary and I realized how hard she worked, she was a trailblazer etc. I spent most of my life thinking she was just mean. (To this day I won’t watch comedians who pick on people. I still don’t find that funny).  I feel like she has been there my whole life and she has! She never stopped working. Rest in peace.

———-

Those damn shoes! There is no way I’m wearing them to Vegas. Those pieces of crap – or should I say the left shoe – hurts my foot. It has nothing to do with how long I’ve been walking, it is just how long I’ve been wearing the shoe. I’m wearing my worn out, lightweight, 4 year old, Skechers to Vegas. I hate sending stuff back so I probably will keep the shoes. I can wear them for short periods and they look nice. 😉  The shoes are well made and probably awesome for someone with no major foot issues.

I have adult scoliosis and maybe flat feet. That can cause a lot of trouble and pain. I’m too scared to read more about it. Remember ignorance is bliss. I’d rather not know that I’m doomed with pain for life. Btw, it is not just foot pain it is also back pain. The foot pain just bothers me a little more.

————

#NoRedMeat (or pork)

baked chicken & salad
baked chicken & salad

ALERT: The following is turkey bacon….NOT pork.

turkey is white meat :)
turkey is white meat 🙂

Just to clarify (for myself – lol) I am not eating red meat OR pork. After not eating red meat for 5 days, there is one thing I have learned about myself: I cannot be a vegetarian. I love animals. I’m not ignorant about how the animals are treated but I have to eat meat. Okay, there is a chance that one day I will see food as just boring fuel. And then I could be a vegetarian. But until then….I will be eating white meat.

Meat outburst over. I have been eating more vegetables and fruit. I wanted to do a one day juice cleanse on day one of #NoRedMeat but I used the excuse of my blender being broken. I felt like my body was begging for a cleanse. I could just do a juice cleanse that requires no mixing. I’m going to buy a bottle of organic apple juice and do it one Saturday or Sunday. Soon. Probably next weekend.

I’m going to start drinking more water which is a big deal for me because I hate water. And I’m exercising more. yay me.

 Weekly

Music for the week:  Ariana Grande, Britney Spears, Ellie Goulding, Bethany Dillon, Mariah Carey, Jason Mraz, Maria Mena, Beyonce

I’m listening to Britney Spears because….I may go see her in Vegas on October 15th!! At this point it is all about the price of the tickets. I have a stub hub alert for anything under $80 BUT I just found out that the tickets often have to be brought in pairs. WTF? Edit: I did find a very expensive solo ticket so there is hope. I know someone who brought awesome seats in the very front for $60  from stub hub. Right now the ticket I want is $440. LOL. I don’t think so. I will probably end up sitting in the back for a regular priced ticket which is about $100. I may wait to the day of and pray that someone is selling a tic at the last minute.

I wish Britney shows were like they used to be but I tell myself that she is doing her best. That is all I care about. I could go see Shania Twain but like I’ve said I’ve already seen her so I’m trying for Britney. Britney and Vegas seem to go together well. I do get tickets to a free show. I am deciding between two musicals: A Beatles tribute or a Motown tribute. I know the Beatles show has gotten great reviews but I’m leaning towards Motown. I may just skip the free show if I am having too much fun….sure. 🙂

TV for the week: Big Brother, The Killing, college football

Movie of the week: none

Books of the week: Vegetarian books plus:

The Goldfinch by Donna Tart (I’m enjoying it but it is waaaaaay too long to read in 3 weeks. I borrowed it from the library. I should just quit reading it but I can’t stop. I don’t know what the plan is…maybe buy the book? It would be great for a plane ride.)

Knitting projects of the week: I have my knitting mojo back. My house is so cold in the winter, I need to wear 2-3 layers of clothes at all times. So I want to finish my hat so I can have that. I also want to start my fingerless gloves ASAP so I will have those. Otherwise I will just end up ordering a pair and I don’t want to do that when I can TRY to make them. If I do order, I want these pair from Etsy. I may use my shawl as a layer too if it doesn’t look too nice to just wear around the house everyday. I call this Operation Freezing House.

shawl -  love the color
shawl – love the color

I have about 1 inch to knit on this hat before I start the decreases.

ribbed hat
ribbed hat

I’m so envious of knitters who can just buy patterns and knit them. That is my dream. I’m stuck in the beginner stage. I guess that is what happens when you teach yourself. I think if I devote more time to it, I can get better.  I’m trying…

—————-

I’m working overtime tomorrow. On Sunday I’m going to do a 30 minute walk even if it rains. That is all I feel like I have to do. Everything else is just fun, I guess: knitting, reading, college football (yes!), and a little studying. No studying is not fun but at least I don’t have to do it. I’m choosing to do it so I won’t lose my skills.

Bye. 🙂 I’ve been working since 5:30AM. I’m going to take a nap.

I’ve been hiding for days

I haven’t left the house since August 16th. I told ya: I’m Emily Dickinson. I’m going out on Sunday to exercise and run a few errands. I think I feel a depression coming on…and it’s not even winter. Bummer.

Maybe it is because I moved my office into my living room. I LOVED it at first, now I’m kind of sick of always being in my living room. Maybe it is because the temp agency hasn’t called with a part-time job. Maybe it is because I’m no longer studying for the boards. I was relieved at first to no longer have to study but now… Maybe it is because I have been working 9-10 hour days (without extra pay 90% of the time) and still behind…Maybe I’m feeling depressed because I have depression? A novel concept. I have been diagnosed with “Major depressive disorder, recurrent episode, unspecified”. I found that out recently. I’m not supposed to know. 😉

Enough about me and my problems. Hasn’t this been a horrible summer? Gaza, James Foley (the journalist recently killed), Syria. etc. etc. I have cut down on my news watching  significantly but I don’t want to not know what is going on in the world. Ignorance truly is bliss but I’d rather be informed. I try to just get breaking news from Twitter.

Um, good news for me? I finally brought my flight ticket to go to Las Vegas! I’m more nervous about Vegas than I was about Oaxaca, Mexico. There isn’t even a language barrier but I’m worried about the airport. I think it is because I really, really, really, wanted to go to Mexico. I don’t care that much about Vegas. I have never wanted to go there. Yet I’m leaving on a 6:50AM flight on October 14. yay me? I think it’ll be interesting but will I LOVE it? I hope so but I’m not counting on it. I will try my best to have fun. I just think all the fun stuff is pricey so I’m not sure what I will be able to do there….besides walk around until my feet pain kicks in.

Weekly

Music for the week:  Ellie Goulding, The War on Drugs, Mariah Carey, Lucy Hale, Phillip Phillips,  Ed Sheeran, Lana Del Rey, Mary J. Blige

TV for the week: Big Brother, The Killing, exhibition basketball

I’m glad I gave The Killing a second shot. It is still a bit too dark for me but it isn’t a bad show.

Movie of the week: none so far

Books of the week:

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Buddhism: For Beginners! The Ultimate Guide to Incorporate Buddhism Into Your Life – A Buddhism Approach For More Energy Focus And Inner Peace by Dominque Francon

Knitting projects of the week: I love working on my shawl. I probably need to give myself deadlines when working on projects. I don’t know if that would work. Here is an updated shawl pic:

 

getting bigger
getting bigger

Can’t wait to get out of the house on Sunday. 🙂   I’m going to “work” a bit more tonight than get into bed and listen to music and play monopoly. I will probably go to bed early tonight since I’m working OT tomorrow at 6AM. Yay, I get paid for that. My life doesn’t completely suck.  (To some people that sounds painfully boring. lol).