Another Project

The Levity Shawl has been in my queue for ages and ages. I had decided to knit it with some of the oldest handspun in my stash. A merino/silk 2 ply laceweight yarn I made ages ago when everything had to be a 2 or 3 ply laceweight. I really didn’t make much other than that once I got to the point that I could.

On Saturday I got started on it.

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The colors are extremely muted and beautiful. The bulk of this particular shawl is a large knitted on border. I am eager to see how the colors look when I turn them sideways for that border. And I love a good knitted on border so this should be good fun!

Mr. Ink and I took today off to go get our marriage license. I am pleased to have that off my list. Mr. In also scheduled a dentist appointment. I plan to work on wedding related stuff this afternoon.

We did manage to finally, after many months, get my loom into the basement. Obviously, since we had so much basement flooding, I am rather pleased that the weather had been too terrible to get that job done the entire time we’ve had it.

I did finish my boneyard shawl but that is still blocking. I am eager to show it off, and I am hoping to get a photo today so I can post that one tomorrow. That’s about it from here, I think I had better get working on wedding related stuff so it really feels like I’ve gotten constructive things done today!

March Beauty Balance Again

I am sure I mentioned that starting beauty balance in March of this year when I am not actually going to quit purchasing makeup until after the wedding was going to be tough. It has indeed been so. When we last left off, I was one incoming item over what left my collection.

Yesterday Miss Marja and I went all over the place doing wedding related shopping and things. One of the things she wanted to do was stop at ulta to pick up some things for herself. While we were there, I picked up some things too.

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Thankfully only three things. I wanted to see if I could get the Jergens natural glow to work for me and be consistent about using it up until the wedding. If I can, I think it’ll be a good idea. I think that the mac foundation I am planning to use at the wedding is just slightly too dark right now, but if I can darken the rest of me it’ll be perfect.

I picked up the wet n wild coconut setting spray mostly simply to use to spray my makeup brushes with. I just finished a setting spray using it that way and I don’t want to use my urban decay all nighter that way. I wanted something inexpensive for that use.

And then, on my eternal hunt for a wedding lipstick, I bought a colorpop liquid lip. The mac one I purchased got tested, and it absolutely transfers badly. I love the color but it is not what I am looking for on our big day. I’ll test out the colorpop next. Thankfully the mac one I adore and can totally wear any other time.

So that’s 4 products incoming above what was outgoing. Let’s see if we can find balance.

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That morphe setting spray I just finished. The spray mechanism is divine but I don’t think the product is worth the price. Then I went through a sample size of the dry texture spray I love with all my heart. I have 2 more full sizes in my stash so it’s all good.

The other items. The tiny glass bottle with a dropper is dermadeli pumpkin serum and I absolutely adored this item. I just looked up the claims and it talks about extreme hydration. That was exactly what I found it to do. I am not positive I’d purchase a full size, and certainly won’t at the moment, but if I am feeling particularly dry next winter I hope I remember it and perhaps give it another go. I loved it.

There’s also a finished briogeo scalp revival shampoo. Once I finish up a bunch of samples I’ll be getting this again. I love this product. I purchased it over the summer and have been using it while also finishing up that lush shampoo bar I was working on. So, it lasted a really long time.

And finally, almost not counting, but since I am counting samples in, I get to count samples out. This is a sample size of the bite beauty lip scrub. I decided to crack it open in part because I wanted to make sure my beauty balanced, but also in part because I am almost done with my elf lip scrub and I wanted to see if this was better enough to purchase instead. It’s good, really good. But I love the delivery system of the elf product so I am not going to be purchasing the bite one at the higher prices.

As a conclusion, that’s 5 products leaving and that means we are back to 1 more product leaving than are coming into my collection. That’s great because we STILL haven’t gotten our boxycharm this month which is really annoying. On the other hand, I know some items are leaving my collection again. The two maybelline waterproof mascaras bother my eyes fiercely. Like, I think something is in my eye all day bothered. Like I think I might be getting pink eye bothered. Like, one eyelid actually swelled up over the day yesterday bothered. So, pretty sure those will be leaving and I’ll be bringing in a clinique waterproof mascara. Let’s go with something trusted this time.

More than halfway through March now, beauty still balanced and lots of items getting used up.

It’s Been a Week

A. Week. That kind of week. The kind you don’t want a do-over of.

We had 3 days of heavy rain in a row with surprisingly warm temps. This caused the snow to also melt at an alarming rate. When I last spoke of basement flooding it had happened over the weekend. But, that wasn’t the last of it.

On Tuesday I went to work assuming all would be well. After all, we aleviated the issues with trenches for drainage dug into our lawn and filled with gravel. We built dams for the patio using large amounts of bubble wrap designed for heavy duty use and bricks. We moved everything to the highest point in the garage. Everything would be fine!

At lunchtime, Mr. Ink came home and everything was not fine. He called me and I left work immediately. We did more work on the inside and outside of the house. We were exhausted. But Mr. Ink stayed up until 1:30 in the morning, through a serious storm, so that he could keep an eye on the basement. Thankfully we had no issues.

So, I returned to work on Wednesday and worried about my basement all morning. Mr. Ink assured me that his work would hold and it would be fine. I told him that was good because I had my annual evaluation at 1 and shouldn’t miss it. He called at 12:30. The flooding in the basement was the worst it had been. I canceled my evaluation and headed home.

I worked all afternoon trying to remove the water from the basement. Mr. Ink again worked on the outside of the house. At one point we had an actual waterfall of water running down the basement wall. If you combine heavy rains, high temps, and 2 feet of snow in the yard melting (Not to mention the snow piles that were up to my waist) it’s bound to cause issues. That day, Mr. Ink actually moved the icy snow piles to the edges of the yard in hopes that it would help.

We continued moving things around in the basement, drying things off with towels and removing wet items from boxes. I was fortunate to not lose anything because everything that was mine in the basement was in plastic bins. But, this was not the case for Mr. Ink and Miss Butterfly.

Thursday morning I double checked the basement. We were leaking a bit but not at an alarming rate so I headed to work. Only to sit around and listen to rainstorms and worry once again. But at lunchtime Mr. Ink’s check in indicated that we were in the clear. So I managed to get a full day of work in.

After work, Miss Butterfly and I decided that since the basement was completely torn up but no longer leaking, it was time to do a basement clean out and reorganization. We moved furniture to new spots, did a major clean up of Miss Butterfly’s stuff, some of which was now for the trash, cleaned any areas of the floor that hadn’t been “washed” with incoming water, and put things away in a tidy manner. It’s nicer down there than it has been in a few years and while it was exhausting, I am so glad it got done. It was on my list of things to do this weekend so I feel a step ahead of the game.

I know that it is often underreported on major news channels but Nebraska and Iowa are really struggling right now with flooding. The rivers are continuing to rise, many towns are under water, dams and levys have been breached or failed, ice jams have been causing flash floods, many people are displaced, and first responders are risking their lives to rescue those who couldn’t make it out of their homes in time, most roads with bridges are closed due to rising flood waters and entire bridges have been swept away. While the weather has been dry, the rivers are continuing to rise, putting us in a precarious position. As such, I admit that while the basement flooding was a personal trial we had to endure, we are very grateful to live almost at the top of a hill in an area where our home isn’t in danger. We are so fortunate, it could be so much worse. And it is so much worse for so many.

So, I will try to zip my lips about my basement exhaustion and do some knitting this weekend. After all, my boneyard shawl made great progress because it’s the only thing I can manage to knit because it’s completely mindless!

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March Beauty Balance

Here’s where things begin to get more difficult. I am 12 items out of my collection of items entering my collection. That’s about to change.

I got an order in:

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Most of this is wedding related. Waterproof mascara to try, as some mascara bothers my eyes and I need to do a test run. A package of blotting papers and a lipstick and lipgloss from the boom boom bloom collection, the lipstick I am hoping will work for the wedding since my last lipstick purchase did not. A lipliner that is supposed to precisely match the lipstick tones. And then two more things. A red lip liner for the days I want to wear a red lip. My two red lipsticks bleed badly around my mouth. And I decided I wanted to experiment with a full face of cream products so I picked up a flower beauty blush bomb. I’ve heard good things. So, that’s 8 items in, bringing the 12 out down to 4 out.

And naturally this came with samples. So many samples.

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Thankfully they are tiny samples. I am counting each sample card as one. And that’s 5 items. This brings me to one item into my collection over those going out. I guess I’d better get working on those samples after all!

I don’t have anything to show for empties since I posted empties yesterday. Hopefully by the time boxycharm arrives I’ll be able to balance March beauty with empties as well.

Still, for this month, it’s pretty good to be only one item unbalanced at the moment.

Continuing March Balance

One thing I’ve learned while choosing different passions over the years is that often good tools really improve the quality of what can be achieved. This has certainly been the case with makeup brushes as well. When I got started I did grab a bunch of inexpensive brushes and did pretty well with them. I’ve also been fortunate to get a bunch of brushes in subscription boxes. I haven’t had to purchase many at all since the initial purchases. But, one thing my collection is seriously lacking in is brushes to apply shadow to the eyelid itself.

Thankfully I’ve waited long enough to know what I prefer, and it would be brushes with some natural bristles involved. As I’d heard a lot about bdellium tools being really good inexpensive brushes, I thought I’d give them a try. I picked up 4 brushes that are natural and synthetic blends. They arrived with a gift of an additional brush and a lipstick. As such, the lipstick has to count in the beauty balance. The brushes do not. I have decided that brushes last so long that they are more of a permanent item in a collection. Unlike sponges which have a shelf life.

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I should also probably add that the eyeshadow brushes absolutely serve my purpose beautifully, I could not be more pleased! They work better than anything I currently own and I am so glad to have them. I haven’t tried the weird green powder brush yet.

In my last March beauty balance post, I was up 10 items leaving my collection. Now I’ve got one coming in. Leaving me 9 items leaving this month.

The lipstick is a great color and supposed to be matte. However, it is not a drying formula. So far I am really enjoying it. I am glad to have it in my collection.

But wait! I’ve finished more since then so I can add more to my leaving the collection list!

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You may remember that I purchased two more CeraVe cleansers last month. The one that I knew was nearing completion is now finished. I also finished a Body Drench original formula moisturizer. This is my absolute favorite hand cream. I use it all of the time. I have two more, one at work and one at home, and both of them are only about 1/4 full. It is getting close to the time I need to pick up some more. This does not leave my hands feeling greasy and it does not have so much of a scent that it interferes with perfume. It has a bit of a powdery scent. I hate lotions with heavy scents so this is perfect for me.

And finally up in the top right corner is a bang beauty eyeliner gel in brown. This never worked for its purpose. It was always a terrible product. But, I’d kept it around for a bit to see if I could use it in my eyebrows. This week I tried it in my eyebrows. It’s as dry as dry can be and I can’t get much to pick up on a brush. Best to let this go. It came in a subscription box and has always been an afterthought for me.

So, from 9 to 12 items ahead this month. I had been thinking I’d never stay ahead of the game this month without turning to a bunch of samples to even the score. As it turns out between just finishing things up naturally and giving my collection a decent declutter I have been able to stay way ahead of the game. That being said, I still have a boxy charm that is VERY late this month and an order yet to arrive. So we shall see.

One of the nicest parts about doing multiple beauty balance posts per month is not having to save what is essentially trash around the house until the end of the month. I’ll still be saving anything from my project pan but not the general run of the mill trash. I love that!

A Project I Didn’t Mention

I’ve been knitting on a project I never showed a progress photo of because the weather was cruddy and I never got around to it. It’s a fluidity shawl and technically I should have made the scarf instead, as I ran out of yarn long before I was able to get particularly fluid. Nevertheless, I think it’s long enough to wear.

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I made this out of Miss Marja’s handspun yarn, isn’t it gorgeous? I loved working with this yarn. I love the colors and they were a joy to knit. The pattern was easy to memorize once I got moving on it and that helped as well.

And do you know what that is on the shawl? Late afternoon sunshine. It’s a lovely thing! We won’t see it today, but yesterday it was wonderful.

Today we do melting and another rain storm lasting 3 days. We are hoping our work on the basement flooding will hold through it. The yard is a pond that freezes overnight. The upper parking lot at our house we had to leave snow covered because there was nowhere to put the snow. So now, water is just pouring down the ramp into the street. Then, overnight it freezes and I have to really watch it when I leave in the morning. If my back tires hit it when I am attempting to get turned around, it’ll just move the entire car. But, we can’t salt it at night because that water is flowing way too fast. We were grateful to see that during this upcoming rainstorm it isn’t supposed to freeze overnight. I suspect by the end of these 3 days the snow will be gone and we can begin to dry out a bit.

The dogs have gone completely nutty with the warming temps. Rose is so active in the house again and it’s terribly cute. She’s less destructive than she was in the fall, but she keeps getting hold of things and moving them around the house. Not destroying them, but she’s moving them! Hairbrushes and shoes seem to be of particular interest. Lizzie is super playful and refuses to quit playing until she’s completely exhausted and lays around panting and grinning from ear to ear. She’s adoring all the puddles to stomp through, that dog loves some puddle stomping! She’ll choose the areas that are the most full of water rather than going around and it doesn’t matter that the water is so cold this time of year. It never occurred to me that dogs could feel as tired of winter as we do! But it seems that was the case.

I hope the weather is improving where ever you are as well, signs of spring are such a relief here!

Things of Note This Weekend

It’s March 10 already! In 10 days we’ll be one month away from my wedding. That’s nutty! Things on that front have been making steady progress this week. Mr. Ink’s tie came in yesterday, it’s lovely. My pretty little handbag arrived this week and immediately got put into the stash of things that need to go to the wedding. I booked someone to come do our hair and also booked a trim and trial run with her for the end of this month. I chose wedding jewelry and ordered it. My veil arrived this week. Miss Marja and I discussed more plans and added things to our to do/to bring list. All of these things are tiny details but the tiny ones can get very overwhelming. I need to arrange a phone call with Mr. Ink’s sister in law so that I can make sure she’s on the same page and ready to direct a lot of traffic the day of. It’ll drive her crazy because the guys in Mr. Ink’s family will all be busy pushing back at her, but she’ll get things done. Mr. Ink and I arranged a day off to go get our license as well, that was weighing heavily on my mind.

In non wedding related news, when last I wrote about the weather I expressed that there’s been snow storm after snowstorm piling up the snow. The paths we’ve cut for the dogs are over Lizzie’s head. But now we have had a warming trend, and with the warming trend yesterday came a ton of rain. In the morning Miss Butterfly and I took the dogs to our rescue meet and greet to say hi. We came back home, Mr. Ink made lunch, and then I decided to take a nap. I went to curl up in bed and ALMOST had my earplugs in when Mr. Ink opened the door. I was ready to be quite annoyed until he said “I am so sorry to disturb your nap but the basement is flooding.” So, we all ran to the basement and assessed what was going on. Miss Butterfly and I began moving items that were getting wet and Mr. Ink said “I think I’d better go work outside, shoveling snow away from the side of the house.” So, he headed outdoors while Miss Butterfly and I worked indoors. Once we moved stuff, we then used every towel in the house to sop up water. We then put the soaking towels in a bucket, tipped the bucket into the washer, and spun out the towels. We did this over and over and over again until it started to look like we were actually making progress. Then one final spin in the washer and we put those fresher towels around the areas where we could see water coming in the worst.

After that we came back upstairs and warmed up. That water was cold and we ended up ditching our pants for shorts and our slippers for bare feet it was so deep in some areas. So we warm up and I get some other things done. Mr. Ink continued to work on the outside. I waited about an hour then headed back to check on the basement. It was flooding in pretty good again so we had another round of clean up. Then I told Mr. Ink the areas where it was coming in so he could concentrate more on those areas. He spent time digging trenches in the snow to redirect the water, moving all the snow from around the house, melting any ice that was stuck to the ground in those areas, finding places where the ground was soft and shoring those up, and he even built a makeshift dam on our back patio to redirect the water away from the house. It worked, after the second shift in the basement things stopped pouring in and started drying out. I was able to get some of the towels laundered and Mr. Ink was able to come inside.

Now, he’d already worked all morning, then immediately turned around and done heavy work outdoors. His body was wrecked when he came inside, so I arranged for pizza to be delivered for dinner, diet be damned. There are times when you just gotta do what is best for the family, and I honestly was feeling so privileged to just be able to order pizza when everyone was too tired to cook. Perhaps I was busy looking on the bright side after the basement flood. In any case, it seems like all of our city was dealing with a similar situation yesterday.

I did begin a new project yesterday. I needed a no thinking knit. So, I pulled out some of my handspun and the Boneyard shawl pattern and got started on that.

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I think my tweedy handspun is turning out to be the perfect pairing with this shawl. I was worried it would be boring, but all the bits I put in there when I made the fiber are holding my interest just fine.

What else this weekend?

Some moments with the dogs. Rose wanted a good cuddle Friday night. Lizzie did too. Her eyes are starting to look much better. I bought Rose a ball but she decided she would prefer to shred it than play with it. As such, it got taken away. But, she spent hours trying to get us to give that thing back to her. No dice Rose, learn to play not shred!

And that’s it from here. I am hoping today is a little more relaxing than yesterday!