Taking on Life at Full Speed

Learning from the past to make a brighter future

Autumn in Portland — October 16, 2017

Autumn in Portland

Hey Everyone!

I had this morning off, so I could sleep at night like a normal person. Beings that I woke up at a normal time for me, I had the energy to go for a walk this afternoon.

Looking for a full time job here that is a good fit for me, has been a challenge. It has made me really think about what I am good at, what I am passionate about, and how I want to spend my career.

I have spent the better part of 7.5 years not using my degree, bouncing around doing different jobs in different industries, yet have had one that was close to being a good fit.

I am definitely wanting to spend more time doing Homemaking stuff and outdoorsy stuff. What would be even better would be modern Homesteading (aka living on a farm, that has electricity and at least a septic system), with a great view. Then I could do the Homemaking and outdoorsy stuff and not have to choose.

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Time is Flying — October 10, 2017

Time is Flying

Hey Everyone!

What a week.

Last Tuesday was very busy, and I slept the rest of the day.

Last week was one of those weeks where I ended the week exhausted after the week I had had.

Saturday, I went with my family to the annual Greek Festival at one of the Greek Orthodox churches here in Portland. We aren’t Greek or orthodox, we go for the Food.

I had Monday off, which was nice. I had needed the extra day off. Monday afternoon I had started packing up my room at my parents house. I have been going through what I want to keep and what can go, so whenever I am able to move away from here, I will be going as minimal as possible.

Working on living a more minimalistic life when it comes to material things, has been a goal of mine. I don’t want a lot of material things holding me back from living my best possible life or making it harder if I were to move half way or completely across the country.

As I have been getting older, I have been learning the value of memories and experiences are more important than a lot of material things that you don’t use everyday.

Don’t worry, I am not getting rid of everything. I am keeping my kitchen stuff (how else am I going to be able to cook and bake stuff up to post about on Simple Homemaking), my knitting stuff (my favorite hobby), my books, my autumn decorations and my Christmas decorations, among other things.

I have learned that I don’t need a big house, and lots of material things to make me happy, give me a comfortable pair of hiking boots and a beautiful day outdoors with a home to come back to at the end of the day and I am happy.

A Couple Days off — September 21, 2017

A Couple Days off

Hey Everyone!

Work didn’t schedule me for today or tomorrow, so I am able to enjoy a few days off and be ready to dive into a full week next week.

Yesterday I spent the afternoon knitting and watching Hulu.

Today I slept in, then got ready to head out. I stopped at Freddie’s and Black Rock Coffee before running by work to check the schedule for next week. On the way home I stopped by Cooper Mountain Nature park, to take some pictures. While I love hiking, I didn’t want to put that much strain on my knee that I banged up pretty good a couple days ago.

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Since I got home, I have been baking some gluten free and dairy free brownies while I waited for my KnitPicks package to arrive.

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In my KnitPicks package, I got the yarn swift I ordered as well as a hank of the KnitPicks stroll fingering yarn. I really didn’t need to order more yarn, but it was a choice of buying a hank of yarn and qualify for free shipping or just order the swift and be a penny shy of getting free shipping so I would have had to pay for shipping. The choice was get more yarn or pay for shipping. Yarn won.

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I have been enjoying relaxing since I got home from work yesterday morning.

First Storm of the Season — September 18, 2017

First Storm of the Season

Hey Everyone!

The rain has finally returned and we are having our first storm of the season!

Just a week ago the temperature hit 90, and a month ago the highs were still in the 90’s and hitting 100 on multiple occasions. Today only got to 59. It has definitely shifted.

We have finally gotten our first measurable rain in months. With the rain we are and have been getting has been helping with the wildfires, especially with the Eagle Creek Fire in the gorge, but with that there is now the increased threat of landslides and rockslides.

My schedule this week has changed a little bit but I do prefer this better. While I still start work late, it still is a bit more reasonable, and there are a few more people out and a few places still open when I am heading to work. I am also getting off earlier, so I am beating the morning rush hour, yet is still late enough that there people out starting their day. It is also dark so by the time I get home, have some breakfast, shower and head to bed, it is only starting to get light. When it is cloudy and rainy, it is darker outside which makes it easier to sleep during the day. Going to bed at a quarter to 7 means I get more sleep in one stretch before I wake up in the afternoon. I am still napping in the evening before I have to leave for work, but I am still getting in some time to knit and watch a few YouTube videos and a few episodes of tv shows on Netflix.

Saturday I had gone out and gone to the stash tea store, to pick up some more tea. I picked up a couple boxes of English Breakfast Tea, as well as several 10 tea bag packs of teas I wanted to try. I had gotten: Raspberry White Tea, Cranberry Pomegranate herbal tea, Acai Berry Herbal Tea, Christmas Eve Tea and Christmas Morning Tea.

No Rest for the Weary? — August 27, 2017

No Rest for the Weary?

Hey Everyone!

The past couple days have been pretty much on the go non stop. 

Today’s stuff has been primarily Urban Homesteading related. I spent most of the day with my family as well. We went out to a couple farm stands, where we picked up some peaches so my mom and I can water bath can them. We has also picked up a half flat of blackberries, two pints of blueberries and four pints of strawberries. 

Had to also go to the grocery store and cook dinner, before going out and planting some lettuce starts I got for free. I know it’s late in the season, but it’s totally worth a try. Good practice at the planting stages of plants…for future reference. 

After planting the lettuce starts, I came in and my mom and I made three batches of jam, two blackberry and one strawberry. 

We will be canning the peaches a little later in the week. 

While planting the lettuce starts I definitely got a little bit dirty. I have always been one to prefer getting my hands (literally) dirty while working outside in the yard and garden. If I am going to be inside and not knitting or reading a good book, I would just as soon be in the kitchen making stuff that tastes good. 

I definitely give mad props to my great grandmother’s and the women who came before them who also homesteaded without electricity, running water, or indoor plumbing and had several kids under foot. It’s hard enough and tiring enough now days with all the modern conveniences. They already had my respect, but have definitely earned it that much more. 

Total Solar Eclipse 2017 — August 21, 2017

Total Solar Eclipse 2017

Hey Everyone!

The buildup to this mornings total Solar Eclipse has dominated the local news media for months, it finally occurred this morning. 

I was outside in the backyard picking raspberries when it occurred. Portland was just outside the path of totality, we were like at 99.2% of totality. So it got darker, and the light was weird, but it more or less got dusky, but the shadows were the wrong direction for sunset and sunrise. 

Traffic and the grocery stores were not all that bad this weekend, but from what I have been seeing now, after it is over, traffic is horrible. At one point about noon, the drive time from Salem to Portland on I-5 was 186 minutes, which is over 3 hours. To get from Portland into downtown Salem (roughly the Marion and Center Street Bridges) is about 45 minutes under normal conditions. 

I am glad I didn’t waste the time or the money to go somewhere in the path of totality. To me it was over hyped, and I had better things to do today than sit in traffic. 

I made Jam this morning, got chicken marinating, cleaned the kitchen, labeled and put away the pickles my mom and I canned yesterday. 

It really didn’t even get that dark. So to me, it was rather lackluster. I went outside and saw why happened, and was unimpressed. 

Fall is Coming!  — August 19, 2017

Fall is Coming! 

Hey Everyone! 

The past few days especially, I have been noticing that we, here in Portland have entered into the transition from summer to fall. It has begun to cool off, especially at night. It has been cooling off fast once the sun starts going down. 

The light has started to change as well, the tilt of the earth has changed the past couple weeks. The shadows are different during the day.

I have also noticed that the air is starting to smell more like fall. Fall has its own distinct scent. It’s not completely there yet to the full fledged fall scent yet, but the hints are there. It also doesn’t smell like the height of summer either. 

Each season has its own look, feel, and smell. Soon, I will have to break out the Apple S’mores and Pumpkin Roll Scentsy Bars full time for a few weeks. 

I am so ready to have my own place and be able to decorate it the way I want, as I have a good collection of fall decorations started. 

Smoky summer days — August 10, 2017

Smoky summer days

Hey Everyone! 

It’s been so smoky that it has looked overcast all week. The air quality has been at an unhealthy level all week as well. The heat and humidity have also been rough this week. 

I have spent most of this week inside with the AC. I am slowly been working on cleaning the house, which is something I can do in he comfort of the AC. I have gone outside a couple times in the evenings to pick raspberries and water the plants. I have enjoyed being the one to go out and pick raspberries, since I have been able to eat them all myself. Tonight I just ate them as I picked them. 

This week I had finished up a pair of socks and got them washed, blocked and dried beings that it has been 90 or warmer much of the week. 

I am definitely looking forward to cooler days this next week. Sunday is supposed to not even hit 70 with a chance of rain.  After tomorrow all the other days are forecasted to be in the upper 70’s to low 80’s, which after this long stretch of upper 80’s to low 100’s (weeks worth) will be “cool” in comparison. 

This shift in the highs is starting to get my hopes up that Fall will be coming sooner rather than later. 

When the Sun Glows Pink, and the Moon Pumpkin 🎃 Orange — August 6, 2017

When the Sun Glows Pink, and the Moon Pumpkin 🎃 Orange

Hey Everyone! 

We have been socked in by wildfire smoke for most of the last couple of weeks. It got a little bit better yesterday and then came back full force today. Most of the smoke is coming down from of wildfires burning in British Columbia. There are a few wildfires here in Oregon and in Washington that we are getting a bit of smoke from, but most of it is coming from the elephant hill fire in BC. The fires are so bad up there that a stretch of Highway 97 is closed for a stretch through the Fraser and Thompson River Canyons. Highway 97 is the longest north – south Highway in BC (and meets up with US 97 at the US / Canadian border, and eventually goes down through Madras, Redmond and Bend in central Oregon). 

At last check the Elephant Hill Fire (the one that we are getting most of our smoke from) has grown to 425 square miles and was about 30% contained. 

With all the smoke in the air, our air quality has been at an unhealthy level (not to mention all the pollution we already have going on). So I have been trying to stay indoors as much as possible with the windows closed. Between the poor air quality and the uncomfortably hot temps, the AC has been my best friend. 

I had gone up to Chehalis this evening to see some friends I hadn’t seen for a while. On the way home, due to the smoke, the sun was glowing this almost hot pinkish orange color. It was weird. Then the Moon has almost this Pumpkin Orange hue to it because of the smoke. My allergies have been crazy and my eyes have been so irritated, since we have had the smoke. Tonight, it reminded me of a couple years ago when I went to Seattle. I remember waking up in my hotel room and going and looking out the window and the sun was glowing a strange color because of the smoke we had that year. 

This weekend has flown by. Friday I ran errands, cooked up some lentils, made some chocolate chip cookies, and by the end of the day I was exhausted. It kind of reminded me of a typical Friday while I was in college. I definitely miss being on my own like that while I was in College. 

Yesterday I spent the day working on finishing up knitting a pair of socks, started cleaning the house, picked raspberries in the backyard and watered the outdoor plants. 

Today I started a new pair of socks, and went to Chehalis. As I am writing this (I began writing it in my head on the way home). While I was so ready to get home while driving back, I have needed a little time (hence writing this post) to wind down so I can go to sleep. 

Here is to going to bed before midnight. 

Still Awake at 2 AM — July 25, 2017

Still Awake at 2 AM

Hey Everyone!

I have had several nights lately where I have been up until 2 am or later working on various projects. 

I am definitely a night owl, that is for sure, especially in the summer, when it is too hot to fall asleep any earlier. 

This time I have been up late working on some YouTube videos for my adventures channel. I had come up with a few ideas that I got started on earlier in the the day, and I am just now waiting on the past one to process on YouTube so it will be scheduled for another day. I got 8 videos edited, processed in the editing program, uploaded, scheduled and processed on YouTube. I am definitely hoping to be able to start creating more original content for all my YouTube channels here in the not too distant future as well as have new content for my blogs. I have no real desire to get big on YouTube, and if I were I would want it to be on my Homemaking (and hopefully at some point homesteading) channel as well as my knitting channel. My adventure channel and life at full speed channel (which I just started today), are really for me, 

I started the life at full speed YouTube channel just so I would have it claimed to match my blog and Facebook page, should I decide I want to make videos about life that are not so in depth and specific to Adventures, Homemaking & homesteading, and Knitting. I know it seems like a lot to have 4 YouTube channels on top of 5 blogs. I know it seems like a lot, and it is. I may not do a whole lot with the YouTube channels, but I want that option available once I have my own place again, and am able to actually have the space to film videos, and be organized about it. I love my blogs and won’t give them up, as I am definitely more of a writer than a speaker.