Hall of Finished Projects 2016-All

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Yggdrasil Blanket in Progress and Other Updatea

So I have the Yggdrasil Afghan in process, middle section done and started the first border. This is really challenging and you can find it on the Lion Brand website as a free pattern http://www.knittingdaily.com/media/p/41042.aspx.






The etsy shop is in progress, as you can tell above and a crocheted rainbow blanket that was supposed to be for sale will be shipping to florida this week  :-).




I love having my etsy shop because it helps to keep me more focused craft-wise. But only four items for sale so far.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Feeling a Little Like Patch Adams...

I am 32 years old.

I have two children, and I'm in my second marriage.

I have been in a psychiatric hospital, 1999, because I was 3 weeks pregnant and had just joined the military. When they told me I did prefer to kill myself then go home a complete and utter failure, but I had no plan, just feelings of despair. So instead of dealing with a headcase (hehe) they sent me to a psychiatric hospital to sit until my separation paperwork was completed.  While there a psychiatrist, who looked utterly bored, saw me for 15 minutes and decided that I was borderline personality disorder. I was depressed, sure, but borderline? nah.

So why am I saying this? Because I have a history of depression, I get down sometimes and always pull myself back up. I used to be a self-harmer, but am not anymore after a great deal of soul searching and some therapy. But now I'm in my last year and a half of a master's program to be licensed as a mental health therapist (in most states its called a professional counselor) and I feel as if that taboo to not talk about your mental illness is alive and even stronger if you're going to be a therapist or psychologist.

You would think that would be a strength, right? I've acknowledged that I've battled with depression and when things get too overwhelming in my personal life I can just cry for an entire weekend. But then on Monday, or whenever a friend needs me, I can move it to the side and help them. That last sentence is the one that scares people.

  Watching a couples weightloss television show this past weekend, both the men were reluctant to attend couples counseling and thought that therapy was for crazy people. Crazy people..

Crazy people...
What does that word mean? Someone unpredictable? Unreliable?
It can be a good thing, when someone is crazy enough to do something daring. It can even be a compliment, like "that was a crazy show!". But in every day life, crazy seems to make a lot of people frightened. But is someone who has been depressed in the past crazy? I just didn't want to be unhappy anymore and feel like I couldn't understand or control it. Now I have that sense of control and understanding, even compassion for my depression episodes. I know where they come from and why they appear. I know what function they serve. I'm not afraid of my dark side.

But in class in my graduate program, it is still taboo to talk about any mental health problems you've ever had. Patch Adams was a very depressed man, but he found himself through those experiences and became someone so much bigger and more expansive, loveable! I feel that way. I feel that because I've felt suicidal, because I had a traumatic childhood, because I've been through an abortion I shall regret for the rest of my life and mourn with so much guilt, because I've actually stayed at a psychiatric hospital, I can understand and sympathize what that feels like in others.

  I had already decided to walk on my graduation next May. Perhaps I should do it in the nude :D.
   Nah, that would be really crazy! (tongue in cheek).

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Spinning Coin

Sometimes I do feel as if life itself is bipolar. I have 21 days left at a job I don't particularly like, and I'm so grateful to have a husband that can pick up the slack and work so I can stay home, help with daycare of our two little ones and finish up my master's degree with internship and externships over the next year. I'm excited that he was awarded today for all of his hard work the past month with a permanent full time job.

   Minutes after I heard that, I was sent an email update from another blog that just broke my heart. The blog "The Secret Life of the American Working Witch" (found here: http://mypaganworld.blogspot.com/2013/02/saying-goodbye-update-on-madison.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Draiocht+%28Draiocht%29) has been keeping everyone up to date about a little girl named Maddie who was best friends with her five year old granddaughter. Over the past 4 days that little girl had gone from being healthy and happy to being sick with last stage lymphoma and died either today or last night.

  I had done my best to send energy and made sure that I visualized on the picture posted of her on that website. But the tragedy occurred, and we all mourn at the horror of it for her family. My imagination is entirely too good, I have a 5 year old and an 18 month old and the idea just shakes me to my core. The same as when the Newtown shootings occurred. My soul quaked at the idea and my heart bled for those poor people who were going through the horrors of those experiences. There are no other words for what I felt then those.

little one with sweet calm eyes
a families spirit lay shattered to pieces
no rhyme or reason
just sadness and despair
but this I know for sure
that little one with sweet calm eyes
mischief-maker and hug giver
is spinning her soul around you
with love and kindness she sails
around and around
through and through
she has not left your side.
feel her love
let it heal you.
Little Maddie
By the way.

Blessed Be, until you meet again.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Entitlement America: CNNMoney Article Response

http://money.cnn.com/2013/01/15/news/economy/entitlement-benefits/

So the article linked above is very interesting, it's in the middle and makes no judgements but speaks about what has happened to cause some of the rise in numbers of American's receiving aid. I would like to pose another reason, which is that wages and also retirement monies have not kept up with the cost of housing, food, utilities (be it gas, electric or oil) and medical costs.

  Yes, I do make more money now then my  mother did in the 80's raising two small girls all alone and refusing to go onto welfare because of the shame tied to it. She started out as a Grade 3 working at as a state worker in upstate New York. At a grade 3 she made $5,280, which was well below the 1985 poverty line of $8,850 (http://www.ssa.gov/policy/docs/ssb/v48n7/v48n7p48.pdf warning pdf). I was able to eat one candy bar a month (yay!) but otherwise sweets were rare until the 90's for my family.

  So looking cost of living and how it's changed? Take a look at this website: (http://www.thepeoplehistory.com/70yearsofpricechange.html) and if we look at the difference in wages between 1980 and 2008 the average wage doubles, which isn't bad right? Except if you look at the other items listed and most of those items costs didn't double, they tripled at least. The cost of bread went from 50 cents to over 2 dollars.

  So thinking about this, the average wages have doubled but everything else has probably outstripped our ability to fit into a paycheck. Perhaps this is the reason why a mother and a father have to work to make ends meet. Perhaps this is the reason why more people in America are pulling on the services available to them from the government in order to make it through. This isn't about people buying too expensive a car or a big screen television, it's about the price of bread and electricity. It's about how the dream of owning your own house is slowly disappearing. If the banks restricted their loans only to the people who could definitely afford it and have shown fiscally they would have no problems, how many sales would there be? Of course I do not agree that if you can't afford it you should still have it, but we have enough empty buildings and worn down houses that we just might be able to have housing for every single family.

  But that is neither here nor there.

  It's just that I'm sick of the conservatives who simply want people to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. It has never been that easy and it's simply getting harder. What is a liveable wage? What does it mean to be able to pay all of your bills each mont without worrying about having enough left over for food? I don't know what that's like. They certainly do not know what it's like to run out of money every two week because their paycheck doesn't stretch to cover everything, or else they wouldn't complain about people asking for help because they can't find enough pennies to buy a gallon of milk for their children.

   What does it really cost to make the essentials we need in America? Are the big companies bleeding people dry?
  I play World of Warcraft and I'm afraid that our economy is kind of the way all gaming worlds go. There is copper, silver and gold that the characters collect or earn during gaming time. They use that gold to buy items ingame. At first it cost 2 silver for a stack of leather. Now it costs 5 gold. Because people want more money. Because people are selling things at 15,000 gold instead of 150 gold. They are ratcheting up the price because they can and they want to get rich. I'm afraid that that is what is going on here. I love the history of the US. It has promise, but I worry that the conservatives and tea party members will drag this country down into a dark age with serf's.

Friday, January 4, 2013

New Year Resolution Time

So recently I finished "My Year with Eleanor" by Noelie Hancock and am inspired. Read it if you get the chance, it's phenomenal!

  Noelie tried to do something every day that she feared, which is admirable but monetarily not feasible for me, so I'm going to go another route. I'm going to try and do something really good for someone every day and not except anything back. What spurred this on was when I was driving home yesterday from a pretty crappy day at work and it was 15 degrees outside in upstate NY, I saw a young lady on the sidewalk in the city with a walker and she was holding the walker's wheel. Well, she had a baby wrapped up and covered in a car seat attached to the walker and a small child at her side and honestly she looked completely at a loss. Someone was standing next to her trying to help her but the wheel had just broken off.

  So I pulled over and got out of the way of traffic and asked her if she was okay. She kind of held the wheel helplessly and said "It broke". So I opened up the back of my mother's SUV that I was driving, pulled out my biggish stroller and hauled it over the snowbank, snapping it open, telling her to take mine.

  She looked so baffled, poor thing, and there was a line of cars beside of us but I just said good luck and hopped back in my car to get it out of the way of traffic. I couldn't drive her home because I didn't have a carseat for her other little one but hopefully she got home quickly with what I gave her.

  I'm not well off, in fact I can barely pay my bills and rent, but I want to think about other people more and less myself. If I had just passed her and continued home without giving some help I would have felt like such an ass and worse then I had already felt for my crappy day at work.

  So here started day 2 of a year (and hopefully as I get in the habit) a lifetime of trying to do good at least once every day. Whether it's sitting down and really lending an ear or lending money when I can, or knitting something for someone without them knowing it. I don't know, I'll think of different things. But my life is chaotic and so uberstressful so I'm going to try and do this to start throwing some light in my world.

Wish me luck!