Color Craving Day 4

I didn’t take a daily photo yesterday morning. Sorry! I had only managed to knit 2 stripes on Friday evening so it was just not worth it. I figured it would be more fun to knock out a good portion of it on Saturday for a post for today. My goal was to get through the stripe part, take a photo, and that would be that.

I worked on it off and on all day, and I did get through the striped portion. But, by the time that happened, it was too dark to take a good photo. I figured I’d get one this morning. But, I also didn’t want it to stall out so I started the third color.

This morning it has been raining. I’ve been up since 6 and knitting on the third color while waiting for the storms to pass so I could get a photo. They finally have, and unfortunately, I am not at a point where I can spread it all out to show off. So, now you get a photo of a bunched up shawl on the needles. But, at least you can see color 3 in there!

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Great progress was made yesterday!

Today we are going to go swimming I believe, so I’ll lose half a day to that. And by lose, I mean knitting time. Family time isn’t loss. We were hoping to take Lizzie to the dog park this morning to wear her out before we left to swim. Unfortunately, with all the rain the dog park is a guaranteed muddy mess. So we are tabling that.

Having us home during the day really wore Lizzie Bean out yesterday. She got so tired she even slept through cooking. So, I think we’ll take her on a nice long walk this morning and that should do the trick for the time we are away.

Lizzie has proven herself, again, a skilled alert dog. One of the many odd things about living on a very busy street is the number of times someone’s broke down car ends up in our driveway. When it happens, I generally go out and say hi, and ask if the person needs anything. It’s almost amusing how desperately apologetic people are about being stuck in our driveway, but thus far it’s never happened at a time where we have to get out to go somewhere. If it happens when we need to get into our driveway, we just park out back and walk in. Yesterday’s breakdown was a lovely classic mustang. Silver with two fat blue racing stripes up the hood and over the top. Mr. Ink was not home (otherwise he could have helped) so I went out and said hi, and asked if he needed anything. He says “This is the first time I’ve had it out all year!!! My wife was following behind me so she’ll be around in a moment. We’ll try to get it started.” Well, he couldn’t get it started, so he came up on the front stoop and even before he could ring the bell Lizzie Bean was barking and growling and carrying on. I was really surprised, she’s such a silent dog! Thankfully she hushed right up when she knew I was taking care of it.

This poor guy had to go get jumper cables and fuel, but did manage to get his gorgeous car back on the road without calling a tow. Every time he’d get that engine revved up, Lizzie would carry on. I don’t know how she could tell it was in “our” space, since there’s road noise almost constantly, but she knew!

With that story, here’s two Miss Butterfly and Lizzie photos from the weekend. They are fairly inseparable when Miss Butterfly is home and awake, just as it should be. And Miss Butterfly loves caring for “her” dog.

Day 2 Color Craving

Well, I think this knit is one of those knits where you knit and knit and feel like you aren’t getting anywhere, and then bam, you are done. Meaning, I knit during lunch break and I knit at home, and I felt like I really hadn’t made any progress even though I knew I had added 2 yarn over rows. Which makes 3 out of 5 yarn over rows done.

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But, then when I compare it to yesterday’s photo, I realize I made stunning progress.

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I mean, I went from 15 stripes to 25 stripes, which is great! Today I get to walk Max at lunch, so no knitting for me. And tonight we are out of the house, so this evening’s knitting will also be limited. But then I’ve got the weekend stretching ahead of me! And it’s full of no plans! I mean, no major ones anyhow. Mr. Ink has to work, and he’s going to have to fix the dryer for me too. But, I may get started on the laundry before he’s done at work anyhow, since I’ve discovered the phone line as clothes line to be rather effective.

We took Lizzie Bean out to a pet store last evening to get a few more supplies. I think we are basically set up to have a dog now, anything else is just extras. I set up a vet appointment yesterday to make sure she’s on track for her weight loss. To be honest, we are worried she’s losing too quickly at the moment. She seems quite hungry and already seems thinner than she was. I think we’ve kicked up her activity levels dramatically and we need a little bit of direction taking that into consideration.

Miss Butterfly has really done a great job perfecting her commands, so now she’s trying some more difficult ones. Miss Butterfly is eager to get her to roll over on command, So we are doing that in short bursts. We really have to wear her out first, she’s got so much wiggly energy in that little body, especially when treats and her humans are involved. So, if we can wear her out first, the entire process is a little more productive.

And as for today’s Lizzie picture, I filled her kong in a bit more complicated manner yesterday after work. We had a nice big play session, then I gave it to her. She was totally engrossed, really enjoyed the process.

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While we were out, we also got her a pretty serious dental treat, hoping she’d be into it. When we first gave it to her, she carried it off but didn’t eat it. So, it lay on the floor. Then later in the evening, Mr. Ink picked it up to see if she’d done anything at all with it. I said “Maybe we put it in her kennel tomorrow?” He thought that was a good idea, and dropped the treat back on the floor. Then Lizzie was like “Hey, what’s that?!?!” And promptly spent time working on eating it. Ok then! Just needed the right calm time and place.

She’s adjusting better and better all the time. She’s finding her favorite spots in the house to sleep. She’s exploring areas she wouldn’t go in alone. And best of all, she doesn’t need to be all up in my business all the time anymore. She’s always going to be a people dog, but she’s getting comfortable enough to wander off on her own a bit. She didn’t get on the bed last night or this morning, much to my relief. She has a very nice dog bed we bought her, but she couldn’t care less about it. That may change come winter, but at the moment she likes to lay on the hardwood floors. Last night Mr. Ink came in to see her laying on the floor with her head on the dog bed. He’s like “Oh, what a nice $60 pillow we bought you!”

That’s about all from here! We’re looking forward to the weekend for certain. Happy Friday!

And I’m Off!

The yarn for the Color Craving shawl I am making for Dyeabolical Yarns arrived yesterday!

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These are the colors I get to use for the project, aren’t they beautiful? And Rachel said she didn’t mind which I chose for the stripe section. While I adore yellow and grey together, I couldn’t resist putting the blue and the yellow together in this case. So, as of this morning, after working on it last evening, here’s where I am:

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I’ll be honest, this is NOT my favorite knit so far. The yarns are WONDERFUL of course. But, knitting something with that dramatic of a turn in it is kind of a pain in the butt. I brought it to work today, so hopefully I’ll get an hour to work on it today. Though to be honest, work breaks have been few and far between lately. In any case, I’ll try to post daily progress photos during this process, because it’ll be all this project all the time until I am completely done.

In your daily Lizzie update, we are adjusting very well, all of us. I didn’t take new photos last evening. But, we are getting a solid half hour of fetch/tug/jump time after work. And, Mr. Ink says she does it at lunchtime too. Between that and a nice long walk in the evening, her activity levels are dramatically increased. Mr. Ink commented that she looks hungry. We were told to keep her food amounts down so she could get back to a reasonable weight. However, we weren’t told what that reasonable weight is supposed to be. Plus, with increased activity levels, she may need more than we were instructed to feed her. As such, we’ve decided we need to set her up with a vet appointment, just so we can get some of those specifics. Plus we need to get her preventatives anyhow. Between now and then we’ll have to make a list of questions to ask the vet.

Miss Butterfly was the last one out the door yesterday, and it was Lizzie’s first day in a kennel. I asked before I left if she was comfortable putting Lizzie in the kennel. She didn’t really like doing it with Coco, but Coco was stubborn. She thought she wouldn’t have any trouble with Lizzie and agreed to do it. Once done and she was out the door, I had to hear how bad it had gone, she (Miss Butterfly) was in quite a lot of distress over leaving her. But, she went to school anyhow. I warned Mr. Ink about it, that reports were that Lizzie didn’t like being in the kennel, but that he should evaluate with the expert eye. At noon, I got a message from Mr. Ink. “Miss Butterfly decided Lizzie should have her water bowl in the kennel too. You can imagine how that went!” So, Lizzie probably had an uncomfortable and wet morning. Thankfully we picked a kennel pad that’s waterproof, so the outside needed drying, but the foam core was completely dry.

The more time we spend with her, the more I am convinced that she had some very good training at some point. She never goes near the garbage. She might want to get up on the couch, but she’ll go to the couch, and then look at me, waiting to tell her if it’s ok to go up there or not. If I don’t indicate, she doesn’t jump up. She never begs at the table, she’s never underfoot and begging while Mr. Ink is cooking. She’s lost a little of her politeness when we go for a walk, so additional training will be necessary there, and perhaps a harness. The only other time she’s a little insistent is when I go to bed and Mr. Ink hasn’t gotten there yet. With no prompting or asking, she gets up on the bed with me. Now, when I tell her to get down, she will. But, she certainly doesn’t ask. This morning I got out of the shower and headed back to the room to get her, and noticed she’d jumped up on the bed with Mr. Ink once I left. Now, Mr. Ink always wanted Coco to be more than a floor dog, but Coco was a solid floor dog. We used to try to put him on the bed from time to time, but all it would do was stress Coco out. So, naturally, Mr. Ink complained NOT AT ALL when Lizzie got on the bed this morning. In fact, I walked back in the room and they were both grinning from ear to ear about it.

The biggest news of the evening was that we got a visit from Miss Marja and Max! IT went quite well actually, about as well as can be expected. There was no growling or territorial behavior. Just a lot of sniffing at each other, and tail wagging. Miss Marja brought some lovely treats and a toy, though Lizzie wasn’t interested in showing off her play skills. At one point I was feeding both Lizzie and Max treats, they were pretty close together, and neither of them were trying to steal food that belonged to the other out of my hands. So, I am going to say it was a good success, and we’ve brought two very good dogs into our lives.

More Lizzie

Yesterday was all about Lizzie, which is just as it should be. However, after we took a long morning walk, she was ready for a nap, and I got to knit. So, just for a quick update on tibetan clouds, I finished the main pattern repeats. Just the final edging and a bind off now! I can’t believe it’s almost done!  I didn’t get the yarn for the upcoming project yesterday, so I had plenty of time on my day off to work on tibetan clouds.

Now on to Lizzie Bean. We had a pretty low key day overall. Lizzie slept quite a bit, which I think is pretty normal for another big change. She was rescued on August 1, so she’s dealing with two big home changes and a lot of shuffling in a 2 week period. I, of course, continued to take photos.

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Because those ears! Those funny ears!

She found her voice. She’s a very quiet dog overall, and since Coco didn’t bark at all, and she’s been so much like Coco, we wondered if she’d ever bark. Mr. Ink came home for lunch. When he walked in the door, she let out a lone, quiet “woof.” He greeted her, and then went to the kitchen to figure out what to have for lunch. He absent mindedly tapped on the fridge door. She tore out of the living room toward the door barking and growling! It startled us both quite a bit. Then we realized she thought someone was knocking. We weren’t looking for a guard dog, and we are glad she doesn’t bark much, but we’ll happily take the alert from her! Of course, after 17 years with a dog that didn’t bark, Mr. Ink thinks it’s great fun to instigate the barking. I told him he’d likely regret it if he kept it up.

We went to walk Miss Butterfly home from school. As soon as we got outside to do so, we had to spend 3 minutes rolling in the grass.

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This was the case every time we went outdoors.

It rained yesterday, and we realized that she doesn’t particularly want to be out in the rain. I went to take her outside, but when she realized it was raining, she noped right back into the house. I didn’t fight it, it was a precautionary trip outside. She’s totally housebroken, but she doesn’t indicate when she needs to go out so you have to just do the remembering for her. I think once she settles in, we’ll be able to read that better.

Mr. Ink and I went out to a pet store to pick up a few things. We needed a dog bed, and a kennel pad, as we threw out the one that Coco had. He had gotten so old and feeble toward the end that he was really struggling to not have accidents. So, a new pad was wise. While there, we picked out a soft squeaker toy and a kong. Since she had major work done on her teeth recently and is still on antibiotics, I wanted gentle toys. And, I didn’t want to spend too much, as the foster home told us she didn’t really play. So, we started with those two things.

Once home, Mr. Ink kind of teased her a bit with the soft squeaker toy. And then quite suddenly she began a very energetic game of fetch with Miss Butterfly, complete with jumping high in the air, and intermittent tug of war. We were absolutely delighted! We also need a more sturdy toy. I could hear it tearing as she tugged and tossed her head around with Miss Butterfly holding the other end. I guess her teeth aren’t hurting either?

She’s such a ridiculously polite dog. It’s almost as if Mr. Ink had to convince her it was ok to have a moment where she wasn’t perfectly good and polite. And then all bets were off for awhile!

I am back at work today. I wish I was able to take more time off with her, but I also realize she’ll have to get used to the routine of us being at work during the day. I am glad Mr. Ink will be home at noon to make sure she’s ok. I am also glad it’s Wednesday, not much longer before we have a weekend. Mr. Ink has to take a few more days off in September, so I plan to join him in that. So, Lizzie Bean will have people at home as much as is possible in the coming month! And you’ll probably be seeing a TON of her.

 

Big News!

At least it’s big news in our family! Hold on, this’ll be a long post!

Last week, after about a year’s worth of discussion, Mr. Ink and I finally decided we’d start looking for another dog companion. Coco, the 17 year old sweetie, left us 2 years ago and I’ve so missed having him around. One of the caveats to getting a dog was that a new dog would have to be “like Coco.” Of course, it’s hard to identify what that means exactly. And, in the end, we decided a new dog would have to be pretty calm, and good, and sweet. And not a puppy, no way! It MUST like other dogs, as Miss Marja’s Max is super important to us, and we didn’t want to make Max unwelcome in our home. That part is actually different from old Coco who couldn’t care less about other dogs.

So, I came across a dog from a local rescue group, and she looked like just the thing. Her foster mom’s descriptions were very Coco like. I showed her to Mr. Ink, and Mr. Ink immediately said no. Because she was long haired and he didn’t want another long haired dog. I kept pushing, I admit. I mentioned that this dog seemed like Coco. I pushed again. He showed me other dogs. I rejected those dogs. I kept looking at THIS dog, and giggling at her photos. And, I showed him more photos and he’d giggle too. Then I reminded him that unlike his 17 years with Coco, he’d have me to share her care with. And he looked at her photos again and giggled. And then he said “Well, she makes me laugh. And that’s probably the best thing you can ask of a dog. Let’s go for it.”

We filled out the adoption paperwork, got accepted, and met Lizzie on Friday night. We went without Miss Butterfly, because if Lizzie wasn’t our dog, I didn’t want a disappointed kid. As it turns out, she was ABSOLUTELY what we were looking for. Mr. Ink agreed wholeheartedly. So, on Saturday, we had Miss Butterfly’s dad surprise her by bringing her to a meet and greet the rescue was holding. None of us would tell her where we were going ahead of time. She, too, loved  Lizzie and was eager to have her in our home.

Next step was the home visit, which we scheduled for last evening. This rescue asks for a home visit with all family members there. We didn’t really know what this would entail, as there was very little indication on their website. We used it as an excuse to organize and deep clean, something that always makes me happy anyhow. Miss Butterfly even cleaned her room really well. As it turns out, the home visit consisted only of hanging out in the living room, and then signing adoption paperwork and getting our photo taken.

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And then, the blue eyed mini aussie shepherd was ours! She’s 7 years old. She’s so Coco like it’s almost uncanny. Except that she’s way more confident. She loves everyone! She’s a wiggly ball of energy, but thus far we haven’t seen her do much in the way of actual playing. She adores other dogs, but if they get overwhelming, she backs right off and finds her humans.

After the foster mom left, we took a long walk together. Then we got home and Mr. Ink cooked dinner. Lizzie Bean was tired, and so she decided to watch him cook while laying on the floor at the entrance of the kitchen.

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She then finally settled in the living room for much love and pictures.

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She surprised us by being about to jump up on Miss Butterfly’s bed. That bed is really high! But she can make it, and then get right back down. Once Miss Butterfly went to bed, Mr. Ink and I hung out with her quite a bit. Then we went to bed, not quite knowing what the night would bring. I crawled in bed, and Mr. Ink headed to the shower. Lizzie took that opportunity to claim a spot on the bed, and she would not be pushed off. So, I lifted her off the bed, and indicated where I’d like her to sleep. I’d set out a folded puffy comforter with one of Miss Butterfly’s blankets over top. She then took the blanket off using the EXACT same method old Coco used to use.

Lizzie slept really well. I….couldn’t sleep again. TOO much excitement for me! But, I did love seeing her sleep stretched out on her side with her back against the bed frame….just like Coco. I took today off to help her settle in at home. I just couldn’t leave her home alone the first day! So, we were all up for breakfast this morning. Lizzie was right there in the kitchen watching Mr. Ink cook!

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I suspect all his cooking will look like this now. But, she doesn’t beg. Not while he’s cooking, and not at the table. We really haven’t got any bad habits to break yet!

It was Miss Butterfly’s first day of 8th grade. Woohoo! So, we walked her to school and met up with friends. And once we left her at school, we took a nice long walk together. Thus far, and awesome day.

So, we got a dog! A 29 pound bundle of fur, the exact size of Coco. It’s uncanny. I am sure at some point I’ll start feeling like this is what Lizzie does, rather than this is what Coco used to do. But today is not that day. We feel like old Coco would have approved.

This Week August 14-20

From last week:

  • 3 repeats on the tibetan clouds stole. I am REALLY getting eager to finish this one. Also, I am bored with the two spectra scarves, but I don’t want to start anything new.
    • So, I did 5 repeats! I have 2.5 left before the edge pattern, and then I am done. It’s slightly possible this could get done before the yarn arrives for my “drop everything and knit” marathon.
  • Accomplish all the stuff in my planner.
    • I did this too, though with varying degrees of success. Despite having done much of it, I have to move some things to the next week to redo.
  • Go on a bike ride. With friends, a bike commute, doesn’t matter. Just, go on a bike ride.
    • Got that one too! It was pretty short, as we were riding with someone new to biking and another one just back on the bike after major abdominal surgery this spring.
  • School open house, and get all the stuff that belongs in the locker into the locker. (This’ll take a couple bags, not just one book bag.)
  • Get step goals on days that I do not ride bike.
    • I am counting this one as well. Basically, there was one day I didn’t quite meet my step goal. But, I had done way more the day before, and I took that into consideration the day after and did way more that day too. Which meant I got more in than I would have had I just taken the time to meet the goal the day I did not. It counts!

In addition to that, the entire house has had a very big deep cleaning. All except for one toilet bowl, as I ran out of toilet bowl cleaner. I do have one last thing to do tonight, I need to wash the kitchen floor.

I also went to the container store, which was awesome. I got a bunch of things that really helped organize our bathroom. I didn’t even get all that I had planned, the storage I did get was so good that I ended up with lots of extra room with just what I did get. I am thrilled! In a month or two, reorganizing the linen closet will be next! For the record, both Mr. Ink and Miss Butterfly are thrilled with the reorganization as well.

Mr. Ink went around the house and fixed all the small things that have piled up this spring and summer. You know how it goes. One little thing will break and one might say “I’ll get to that soon” but it falls off the radar, and then another thing breaks, and that goes in the same pile, and so on, until you have quite a lot of work to get done! The only thing not fixed was his bike tire, and that’s likely because I made him go for a bike ride. (He took the bike without a flat.) So truly, this was a wonderful busy weekend full of getting stuff done that was beneficial to all of us!

For this week:

  • Daily step goals
  • One bike ride
  • Work on knitting marathon
  • Get all the stuff in my planner done. (Let me just go add to that now!)
  • Clothing donation. I need to get about 3 very large bags of clothing out of the house.

That’s…about it. I mean, I could probably add to it, but I am EXHAUSTED! Hah!

Extra Hours

You know, I am often looking for extra hours in the day, but I so rarely find them! Yesterday though, someone must have snuck a few extra hours in. In part I am sure I felt this way due to a case of insomnia. I went to bed Friday night at 11, but woke up very early Saturday morning and couldn’t get back to sleep. I finally got up, wound some yarn, worked on tibetan clouds, and finally was able to sleep again at 4:30 am. Which was about the time Mr. Ink woke up and couldn’t get back to sleep. But apparently we didn’t need that sleep? Because I woke up at 7, and got a wild hare to deep clean the house. Which I did. Except for the bathrooms, those are on the agenda today.

I got started right after breakfast, we had an appointment at 11, so we did that, then back home for more cleaning. After lunch I decided to get started on the laundry. Now, Miss Butterfly had told me that she thought there was something wrong with the dryer, but I told her the problem was that the washer sometimes leaks water back onto the clean and spun clothes, so if she doesn’t pull the clothes immediately, the dryer takes FOREVER. She was like “No. That’s not it.” So, I decided to do a test run with laundry, and she was correct, something was wrong with the dryer.

I called Mr. Ink in, and I suggested that maybe our first step be to see if the exhaust tube was clogged. So, we took that off and cleaned it. This is a chore I’ve wanted to get done for about a year, so I am calling it a big win. Plus, it smelled vaguely of wet dog when we cleaned it, and we haven’t had a dog in 2 years so it REALLY needed to be done. But, that wasn’t the problem. So, Mr. Ink began exploratory surgery on the thing. Thankfully, he doesn’t think it’s terminal, but at 4 pm all the appliance parts places were closed, so he couldn’t go get the part he needs. (Let me just say here what a pleasure it is to live with someone mechanically minded? Oh my goodness, home ownership would be so much more expensive without him!)

So, I hung up the clothing, indoors, and then outdoors on the telephone wire that isn’t used. Unfortunately, the test run of laundry I did was not the one that most needed to be done. Mr. Ink’s work clothing still needed to be washed, so I did another load, and hung those all over the house too.

Now, anyone who has followed my blog for any amount of time knows that I’ve been wanting to rearrange Mr. Ink’s den of slack. I mean, he was so slack in there, that you could no longer walk. There was an extra desk in there that was meant to replace the one he had his computer on, the chair was broken and we bought a new one for him early in the spring, but that has just sat in the basement waiting for the room reorganization. There were plastic bins and boxes full of stuff all over in there, because a certain someone who is not me never bothered to unpack. And to be fair, at one point there wasn’t anywhere to PUT it. But, with the addition of a dresser in there, we did have room, he just didn’t feel like doing the work. Well, I nagged a bit, and when that didn’t work, I tried sweet faces and kind words, and then I even resorted to goofy faces. Which finally did it.

Guys, that room was so dirty! We got the old desk out of there, and then I even made him pull up the rug and turn it around so he could wear down the other side with his dirty shoes and office chair. And I could clean under it. It was a big job, no question. And it’s not done really, there’s still a lot that needs sorting. But, the bins and boxes are gone! The stuff that was meant for donation is gone! And it’s looking pretty good. Want to see?

This is the 360 view. There’s even plenty of open space! He said he wanted to add a large plant in that open space, so I had to remind him that his goofy colorful chair was going there when I eventually get new furniture for the living room. Now that we got that far, I realize I need to reorganize my yarn stash too. I’ve let it slide mostly because if the room is a pit, why bother? Now the room is so much less of a pit!

Meanwhile in all that work? I managed to finish up the singles on bobbin 3 and spin the singles for bobbin 4 of my purple batts!

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Seriously, I couldn’t believe it. So, after dinner I got started on plying. I finally settled on a 2 ply for this one. 10 ounces of 2 ply yarn will be amazing yardage, maybe even to the tun of sweater amounts. And, the yarn is turning out so nice! It’s so rich looking.

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I am hoping for another day with extra hours today, but I am not sure one can get so lucky for 2 days in a row of this! I left the bathroom deep cleaning for today in part because I want to get to the container store to see if I can find a way to make the bathroom more organized in a user friendly manner. The current set up isn’t working for any of us and is just making us all a little frustrated. Seems like between that and general errands, my day should just fly by! And, I don’t even mind because it’s been awhile since I’ve been so inspired to get things done in this manner!