Taking on Life at Full Speed

Learning from the past to make a brighter future

Making Gallons of Hot Cocoa — December 10, 2017

Making Gallons of Hot Cocoa

Hey Everyone!

Hanging out in the Kitchen is one of my favorite places to be. This year I have been helping my mom again in the kitchen at the church, to make hot cocoa for the annual Christmas event that takes place a weekend in early December.

Friday night we made 51 batches of mix which equates to 63.75 gallons of cocoa. We had a bit leftover so we put it in the cooler for tonight. In addition to that, we made an additional 45 bags of cocoa which equates to 56.25 gallons of cocoa Saturday night. So far this weekend my mom and I have made 120 gallons of cocoa. We still have one night left.

This time of year always gets so busy, and crazy. Most years any more I have to remind myself that there is more to life than the rampant consumerism that is pushed down our throats. I try to remind myself that Christmas is more than just the material and monetary gifts, rather what we can do for others.

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Last Time going to the Beach…. — December 6, 2017

Last Time going to the Beach….

Hey Everyone!

I have been trying to write a blog post a day on this blog, yesterday it just didn’t happen.

The eventful things that happened yesterday were getting my Clinique order in the mail and finishing up a pair of socks.

Today was a busy day, it started out by getting up earlier than normal and getting out of the house early (for me anyway), so I could get gas in my car, stop at Cost Plus World Market to look for stocking stuffers, and then stop at target to pick up a couple items before I left town for a few hours.

I had been paying attention to the weather forecasts for a few days and they were calling for some nice days, with sunny skies and comfortable (for this time of year) temperatures. I have been itching to go to the beach for a while. I have missed it so much, and the past couple years I had gone a good half a dozen or more times each year, so the three times I had gone this year just wasn’t cutting it. Beings the weather was supposed to be perfect at the beach today (and it was), I went. I had also wanted to go one last time while I am in my 20’s. Once this month is over, I will no longer be in my 20’s. I realize the beach won’t change that much between this past summer and this next summer, but I will be in a new decade of my life, and want to close out this decade by doing stuff I enjoy doing.

After I got home, I got things put away, I showered, got some dinner, and then successfully started my latest pair of socks. That’s a story for a post on my Knitting blog. So now I am back to working on another pair of socks.

TV Shows I am currently Watching — December 3, 2017

TV Shows I am currently Watching

Hey Everyone!

In the past couple of weeks, as I have had more time inside to knit and watch shows on Hulu and Netflix, because it has gotten colder and wetter. The cold isn’t so bad as long as you dress for it, it’s when it is pouring down rain as well, that makes being outside miserable.

Like I had already mentioned, I have had more time to watch more shows on Hulu and Netflix. A couple I have gotten into here recently have been Shetland and Godless.

Shetland is a murder mystery show that is set in the Shetland Islands, which are part of Scotland, but are North / Northeast of the northern tip of the Scottish mainland. The are also west of Norway. The Scottish accent is heavy, but at least to me, it’s not that bad, and can follow along without subtitles.

Godless is a show set in the old west of New Mexico. It is about a gang of outlaws who track down a young man who used to be part of their gang who became a traitor and enemy of the gang. One of the Characters in the show is played by Michelle Dockery, who has played Lady Mary in Downton Abbey. So it was to see her act in a different show, why I got into this show, besides liking westerns.

While I was watching Shetland this afternoon and evening I made a lot of progress on the sock I am knitting up. The sock I am working on is the second one in a pair. I am trying to get it done in in the next couple of days, so I can start a new pair before this next weekend.

Helping Kids with Crafts — December 2, 2017

Helping Kids with Crafts

Hey Everyone!

A couple days back, a friend of mine had asked me if I would help with crafts during dress rehearsal for the Christmas pageant that is coming up next week. I agreed to help her.

So, this morning I went over and helped kids make crafts. There were three groups of kids, who were rotating through stations (dress rehearsal, crafts & games, and brunch). It was interesting to see the kids come through, and who needed help and direction on crafts and who did their own thing.

One of the crafts that was available for the kids to work on, was making wreaths using canning lid rings and wrapping them with ribbon then decorating them. By the time the third group was there, there was plenty of craft supplies left so I made a wreath myself. This is how mine turned out:

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This afternoon I also had run a couple errands, you know, boring adult life.

The Holidays are fast Approaching — November 20, 2017

The Holidays are fast Approaching

Hey Everyone!

My weekend was pretty uneventful. I have been working on a pair of socks, using KnitPicks Hawthorne yarn. I am still working on the first sock, but plan on having it done tomorrow.

It’s hard to believe that Christmas is a little over a month away, and Thanksgiving is on Thursday.

What are all of you (well those of you who live in the U.S.) doing for Thanksgiving? I will be spending it with my family, and helping my mom cook Thanksgiving Dinner. I have been helping my mom cook Holiday dinners since she took over after my Grandma (my Dad’s mom) passed away. So I have been helping my mom make Holiday dinners since I was a teenager. Pies are my specialty. I make them from scratch, including the pie crust.

Friday morning I work, I have no idea how crazy it is going to be, fortunately I won’t have to be there super long while customers are there (since I am early stock crew). I have never done the whole Black Friday, being at stores at some early hour (at which I would rather still be in bed), to shop.

It’s too Early to put up Christmas Decorations — November 5, 2017

It’s too Early to put up Christmas Decorations

Hey Everyone!

This weekend I have been hearing a lot of people I know, primarily on social media, talking about how they want to put up their Christmas decorations or that they want to decorate for Christmas.

I’m over here like “Noooooooooo, it’s to early for Christmas decorations” and “I am already so over looking at Christmas decorations”. For the past two months I have been working a seasonal job in the retail industry, and we have been working on setting up our Christmas shops in store since mid September, so I am at a point already where I am over looking at decorations before the season has already begun.

This past week was crazy busy, first time I worked 5 days in nearly a month, and as Christmas is approaching it is only getting busier.

I have been sleeping a lot this week when I haven’t been working.

Yesterday I helped baked some cookies that I cannot eat since they have dairy, eggs and gluten, but it was fun.

Today I finished up a pair of sock I have been working on for the better part of a month. I had hoped to have these socks done and washed by Halloween, but that didn’t quite happen. At least they are done now, well besides the washing, blocking and drying part. I am waiting on a sunny semi warm day in order to put my socks out on the line to dry.

Just a Rainy Day in the City — October 19, 2017

Just a Rainy Day in the City

Hey Everyone!

Today has been a rainy, and rather gloomy day. I have enjoyed it.

This afternoon I had an interview, so I went out and about for a bit. There is a Target down the road from where I interviewed today, and beings that I was super early, I stopped at Target to pick up a few items.

I had left super early for my interview because Traffic tends to be a nightmare. Traffic has really gotten worse over the past decade.

For the moment, while I am still living in the city, I am trying to take advantage of that. Beings that Autumn is here and snow is coming, I am hoping I get this second job so I can work on saving money, so after the Holidays, landing a full time job will be my main focus, and if moving a longer distance than a couple hours around where I am, is something that I need to do, I can make it happen in the spring, once the weather is a bit more conducive to moving. With the exception of going to central Oregon, moving any other direction within 2 hours is doable even in the winter. It’s not fun to move in the rain, but it’s doable.

I love the rain and this time of year. I know a lot of people who don’t. I for one love the rain, the Grey overcast skies, the actual need to wear a jacket, without being hot (and over 90% humidity). I know I am probably in the minority who loves the cold wet Pacific Northwest weather. This is the time of year when hot tea and knitting, or cooking / baking up something tasty is a favorite pass time.

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.

I am my Grandmother’s Granddaughter  — July 16, 2017

I am my Grandmother’s Granddaughter 

Hey Everyone!

Somethings are genetic, others are factors that come into play from how we were raised and what we were exposed to from a young age. 

As I am getting older, I have been realizing how much I am like my maternal grandmother. Granted she was the grandparent I spent the most time with. She lived in the same city as I did growing up, so she helped raise my brother and I. She was also the grandparent I had in my life the longest (she passed away when I was 22). So it’s only natural that some things were passed on to me, from her, by having been able to spend so much time with her. 

Other things, like the fact that my body doesn’t handle heat all that well can’t be learned. At least I know where I get it from. Not that I mind. I am definitely more of a fall and winter person anyway. 

Things I learned from my grandmother: That the beach is amazing, and that it never gets old, no matter how often I get to go to the beach. She also taught me how to knit. 

She also happened to be my birthday celebration buddy. Our birthdays were only 2 days apart, so we often celebrated together. I was born 2 days before her 69th birthday. 

I am glad that I was blessed to have her as my grandmother. She was always there for me. Even though I tend to be miserable in the summer from the heat, It reminds me of her. Air Conditioning and the fact that I know Autumn is coming are the the two things that get me through summer. 

Learning to live a simpler lifestyle — June 25, 2017

Learning to live a simpler lifestyle

Hey Everyone!

Lately I have been rather overwhelmed with the constant bombardment of the media and our society propagating the mentality that we need the latest & greatest / biggest & best / needing more all of the time. 

I have noticed it more so living here in the city. 

I’m not saying that having a few nice  / quality things is bad, especially if you work hard to obtain them, and intend for them to last as long as possible. 

I know, since having been back in the city especially it has been a struggle for me, and that I have fallen into the trap of wanting more and new things when what I have works just fine. 

In the last few months, I have really been feeling that living in the city, where the fast paced, “give me what I want, and give it to me now” lifestyle is the norm. 

I miss having to drive more than ten miles to the nearest craft store, and the closest “normal” mall was an hour and half away, where I didn’t do much clothes shopping and wore what I have in my closet. 

I would much rather spend my time tending a garden or canning fresh picked local fruit, or cooking or baking or sitting on the porch or around the campfire working on my knitting, or reading a good book, and falling asleep at the end of the day after having worked hard that day. 

I have definitely noticed lately, that I have a hard time sleeping lately because I am not tired enough. 

I am really trying to learn from history, particularly the pioneers & early settlers of this area as well as from those who lived through the depression. Where you lived more off the land and worked hard for what you have, and when something breaks you fix it. Being able to make what you need, is a skill that has been lost. Being a city girl, it seems like most of the young women I grew up with (who also grew up in the city) really don’t know how to cook and bake from scratch, and are not inclined to. Their version of cooking & baking is opening a box and minimal steps, or better yet having someone else do it for them. 

As I get older, the more I want to live a life that is more about living life to the fullest, the experiences one can having, and doing for myself rather than relying on others to provide it for me (self-sufficiency). I have come to realize that I want to live somewhere with crappy to no cell service, and not have a cell phone, have basic internet (so I can still blog, watch the occasional YouTube video, be able to access email, be able to order Yarn and Perfectly Posh when I need to, as well as my dairy free & gluten free staples), a land line phone and maybe basic cable, to get the local news stations. I would love to garden, growing as much of my own fruits and vegetables as I can, and buying from local sources what is not feasible to grow on the small scale, but want to get to can or make jam/jelly then freeze/can. 

I am already so blessed to have what I have, and know how to do what I know how to do. 

While I am still looking for a pair of hiking boots that fit better than the pair I have, I don’t need 10 pairs of original toms plus numerous pairs of vans. I don’t need a ton of dress shoes. If I have the opportunity to live where I want to live, I could use a pair of good winter boots, a pair of wellies, a good fitting pair of hiking books, and I would be set until the shoes I have wear out. 

If I have the chance to live where I want to live, some work clothes that can get dirty, and can handle wear and tear would be a must, but for now I am set with normal clothes.