A Little Project

Over the past year or two I’ve gotten far more interested in perfumes than I was at any other point in my life. I genuinely believe that this has a bit to do with aging. I remember my mother mentioning that her ability to smell seemed to be diminishing somewhat as she got older. I was a young adult at the time, so likely she was about the age I am now. In my own younger years smells could be extremely overwhelming and perfumes in particular were overwhelming and often overstimulating. It is not fun to put on a perfume and then be completely unable to concentrate on anything at all other than the way I smell. And that was often the case for me.

However, with age, I am finding that many of the perfumes I wouldn’t have even bothered to try in the past actually smell quite pleasant to me now. So over the past year or so I’ve taken the opportunity to explore that further. I’ve enjoyed trying various samples, purchasing some perfumes, and trying to hone in on the scents that I tend to love and those that tend to give me a headache or be distracting.

Since I am over a year into this process now, I have purchased a number of perfumes that I do like and am less likely to be adding little sample curations to my collection. As such, I’d like to start getting a better handle on my collection of samples and my perfume collection in general.

So, I am beginning a little project use it up for myself.

These are the items I am starting with.

Top row are the two oldest perfumes in my collection. The Ariana Grande Moonlight perfume is super close to being used up. It’s also circa 2018 now and really has little to no staying power left. I tend to wear this on days off when I just want a simple perfume, not too strong, with a scent I find enjoyable. The other is Thierry Mugler Alien. This is a far stronger perfume and a little goes a long way. I purchased this probably in 2019 and I’d like to get it finished as well. While I do enjoy the white floral combined with woodsy notes, I don’t think I would purchase a full size bottle of this. I tend to like to purchase travel sizes when I can as I do find myself “over” perfumes after a time of wearing them consistently. I like variety! So, I am looking to use up the two oldest perfumes in my collection.

I am also looking to use up sample sizes of anything I have a travel or full size of as well as a few sample sizes I am almost out of.

The first is Tom Ford Black Orchid. I received this sample, sprayed it on me, and almost immediately went back to purchase a larger bottle using a coupon I had. For me, it is just so very good. It hits on a lot of the scent profiles I enjoy-woody, white florals, vanilla, spicy, and adds one of my absolute favorites, patchouli. So, I’d like to use up the sample and be left only with my larger size bottle.

I have two Ellis Brooklyn perfumes, two samples of Bee which I also have a travel size of, and a sample of Apres which I have a travel size of. I like them both very much though there are days where Bee feels a bit too sweet and I get overwhelmed by it. But there are other days, particularly cold days, where I really love it.

And then I have 3 samples from Maison Margiela Replica line. I have samples of By the Fireplace, Whispers in the Library, and Autumn Vibes. There are only a couple uses in each of them. The only one I have a full size of is By the Fireplace. However, that’s one of my all time favorite perfumes at this point. Absolutely no reason to keep a sample size around. I would like to add Whispers in the Library to my collection but it’s harder to get my hands on, I’d need to order directly from their website. It’s on a short list of perfumes I absolutely would want to add to my collection. And then there’s Autumn Vibes. This is one where it seems like I should really like it, but I just…don’t? I mean, it’s ok but it is just not a favorite despite having so much going on I should like. I think I’d like it better with a tiny bit of sweetness added to it.

For this little use it up project of mine, I plan to do a mid-December update with monthly mid-month updates, potentially rolling in other fragrance items until I am at a point I am comfortable with my collection again. (Which sort of just means having used up the bulk of the sample perfumes.) I don’t feel an overwhelming need to go fast on this project, rather I’d like to rotate through my collection while concentrating mainly on the focus items that are in the project. I think my big approach for this upcoming month will be to finish off the replica fragrances since they are almost gone anyhow, and then rotate through the remainder. I’ll be keeping the Moonlight perfume for weekend days and days off, but I do have an entire week off this month so I’ll probably hit that perfume hard during that week in particular. It is so close to being done that I think perhaps I could also finish that one by the next update.

Puppy Finale

In August I wrote about our foster dog and her puppies about 3 days after they were born. I had intended to update with new photos of their progress as they grew in our home. However, it turns out that raising newborn puppies in my home was ridiculously and wildly overwhelming and busy. It took every spare moment we had to raise well adjusted and good puppies, the story of the frog in the pot being slowly boiled was a little like what puppy rearing is like. It’s wildly busy from the start and just gets busier.

I am extremely proud of the work we did. I litter trained them from about 3 weeks old so that they would generally use litter boxes with pine pellet horse bedding in it to potty in their pen, keeping their pen far cleaner than it could have been. From about 5 weeks old I trained them to sit and look at me when they wanted something in order that they would be easier to train in their forever homes. I kennel trained them for the same reason. I used various types of flooring in their pen so that they would not be upset or scared by new flooring as they got older. At 5 weeks old we started taking them outside to play so that they would also learn to potty outside and get used to leaving plants and trees alone, playing with safe things instead. They were well socialized to both people and dogs, I had regular visitors over to handle them.

By the time they went home they could do all these things, could do stairs, and were bold, non fearful, playful, fun, and well adjusted puppies. It about killed me, but we did a great job.

At the age of almost 10 weeks they began going to their forever home. Their mom went to her home first when they were 9.5 weeks old, then I had one adoption on a Thursday, 5 on a Saturday, 1 on that Sunday, and then I ended up with 3 different home visits to find the correct match for the final puppy but he went home on a Wednesday. So, over the course of a week all the puppies were placed in their forever homes before they were 11 weeks old.

I did get photos of them right before they were 9 weeks old, which is what I am posting here. I love each and every one of them. We had the best case scenario of a good mama dog who had 8 healthy puppies. Even with the last puppy who stayed a few extra days, he was easy because he slept through the night in his kennel, rather than waking up every 2-3 hours which can be expected at a young age. I love each and every one of them, but I do not miss them. 🙂 I am over the moon about having my house back to myself.

We regularly ask ourselves if we’d do it again. And the answer is probably yes. But, if we do, it’ll need to be another best case scenario situation and it’ll need to be a few years down the road. What the project ended up being was something which put our entire lives on hold for 3 months. A labor of love that I will not be able to manage regularly. But we are grateful for the experience and very happy about our good puppies.

Graveyard Project Pan Finale 2022

On this lovely spooky day at the end of October I can post the finale for my graveyard project pan. This was a project which I began in May and then ends on Halloween.

The idea is to use items which have been in other project pans (resurrection items) or use old items which haven’t seen much love recently (collecting cobweb items.)

I had a fairly small and focused group of items and was able to make wonderful progress. Here’s the original photo I started with:

My goal for these items were to hit pan on the contour, brightener, and blush. Then to finish the tiny pan of eyeshadow and to get as far as possible on the container of primer.

I eventually rolled in a powder as well which I already had pan on but wanted to keep working through. July was the start date on that one as the previous powder I’d had in the project was lightening my foundation making me look rather “ghostly” which while appropriate to the theme was not at all what I am going for during the summer months. I’ll get back to that powder this winter.

Last month I had an update which was pretty fantastic, I was very pleased with my progress.

It was at this point where my goal to hit pan was out the window and now I was eager to finish the contour entirely. I also had a tiny bit of pan on the lighter highlighter which I hadn’t expected to use at all. I’d reached my goal on the brightener but wanted to continue working on it through the month. And, I did realize that I would not hit pan on the blush but I continued to work on that as well.

Here’s where I managed to get to throughout the past month and a half:

The bronzer and the eyeshadow are completely used up. I expanded the pan on both the brightener and the highlighter. And, as expected, I didn’t hit pan on the blush but feel pretty good about the use I did get out of it. The primer is pretty close to being finished and I do want to continue using it up throughout the upcoming months to finish. Same goes for the powder, though I don’t really need as much of it right now as the weather is cooling and I no longer have to wear a mask at work. It may end up getting set aside for next summer.

As for the face palette, I am putting it away for a time. I will enjoy rotating through my stash in the upcoming 2 months while I prepare for whatever project I decide to attempt in the new year. (I am leaning toward full face of rolling project pan with quarterly refreshes again this year but I am not positive.)

All of this is to say, this was a wonderfully productive project for me this year. In part, it was made easier by the fact that we had a foster dog and puppies in our home for 3 months of this project, and I had to pack away all my other makeup to make room for puppies, keeping only the barest bones makeup stash out for getting ready in the morning. It’s easy to see progress when you don’t really use any other makeup!

Painting Squares

I finished another pattern from the Painting Shawls book, this one is called Painting Squares.

I used handspun for the accent color. The main color is yarn I reclaimed from an old tank top I knit years ago. I thought it was a fairly decent repurpose of the color. The color scheme is far more muted than I would typically choose but I am really enjoying the result.

This is the fourth out of 13 shawls from the painting shawls book. I have the 5th on the needles but am also working on the westknits mystery shawl so I don’t anticipate being done any time soon with either of them. Nevertheless, I am enjoying all the new techniques and color play happening with all of these patterns!

Graveyard Project Pan Update 3

This will be the last update before the finale of this project and things are still going quite well on this one. Let’s start with the eyeshadows part of the project. In the collecting cobwebs category, I decided to work my way through all the colors of certain eyeshadow palettes. In part because I wanted to see if I wanted to keep them and also get a fair amount of use out of them. For the previous month and a half I had chosen 3 Too Faced palettes.

I am very pleased to have done this. In part because it showed me that the christmas palette had gone off. This shadows performed beautifully when I purchased the palette but they absolutely do not anymore. When I compared this to the other two palettes, the other two, while older, worked wonderfully. So the formula on the christmas palette wasn’t worth keeping. I ended up destroying the palette to get the majority of the face powders saved in a magnetic palette and I tossed the rest, including a highlighter that was too dark for me.

I am not choosing more palettes to work through for the next update. With 8 puppies and a foster dog in the house I am just not able to give attention to makeup, particularly eyeshadows, the way I do when I only have our two dogs. There’s no point choosing a couple palettes that I know I won’t be able to work on. Instead, I’ll work through the base products which I am still wearing with some regularity.

Here’s the photo from last update on those:

After this photo was taken I repressed the bronzer as it had been getting difficult to use. I actually added a bit of the highlighter next to it to give it a sheen.

There really isn’t much left of the bronzer now. I do hope to fully finish it before the end of this project. I also hit pan in the brightener and while you can’t see it, I’ve been using the lighter highlighter this summer even though it is too dark in the winter and I hit the tiniest pan on that too. It’s in the lower left quadrant but I doubt you’ll see it for the sparkles. Pretty exciting though when I assumed I wasn’t going to be working on it at all.

I had also repressed the cream colored eyeshadow pan so it’s hard to tell what usage I had on that over the past month and a half. I think it’s been pretty minimal since, again, 8 puppies and not much time for makeup. I’ll keep plugging away at it.

I’ve somewhat given up hope of hitting pan on the blush, but at the same time recognize that I finished the other blush I was working on, so if I keep using this one exclusively, there’s a chance I can hit pan on it before the end of October.

For the face powder I am actively working on, so much progress has been made! I am now working at lowering all the product toward the sides of the pan but I genuinely believe this could be finished in a month and a half.

Finally, the primer. In the last update I’d worked product out of the corners with a tool, but this time I am back to using my fingers and it doesn’t feel like a ton of progress was made. I think that is because to some extent I am also pushing the product around while I am trying to access it.

I will be entirely ready to put away the face palette at the end of this project and use some other items in my stash. But, I’ve made so much progress during this year that I do plan to go back and finish up the blush at some point fairly soon. I actually feel that way about every single item in this project, all of them are close enough to see finished up when I have the motivation for it once this project is over.

It may be that I can’t use makeup as much as usual or it may be that the weather is turning but I am full on contemplating what I’ll be choosing for project panning next year. I do think once this project is over I’ll use November and December as a break to work through choosing for the new year.

All in all another fairly successful month and a half despite the fact that we are all completely topsy turvy in our household right now!

22 in 2022 Project Pan Finale

I figured it was time for an update today because I’ve finished two more items. And because these two items bring me to 22 items gone I am technically done and calling it a finale. (Ok, in all seriousness, I am a bit bored, 9.5 months is about as much as I’ve ever wanted to concentrate on any set of items, and I am going to use the next 3 months to rotate through stash and make decisions about next year while also working on my graveyard project pan.)

Last month:

This month:

The two items completed are the Stila lipstick and the pan of blush I’ve been working on all year. Despite ending this now, I do plan to continue over the next 6 weeks or so working on both the supershock shadow and the eyebrow gel. You see, with puppies in my craft room I had to pack away most of my makeup, and so these two items are getting used regularly and I want to keep working on them. Also, I will keep working on the mac foundation. I have some opportunities to use it this week actually since I am not going to be at work this week. I only used it once since the previous update so that’s no progress whatsoever. And while I forgot to take a photo of the powder I am using on my undereye area, I am using it very regularly and will keep working on it until I finish it up.

I do not think I will do a 23 in 2023 style project next year. I think I’ll do something more along the lines of a full face or rolling project with refreshes so that I can stay more engaged with the project through the year. Plus that will help me rotate through my items more as well. So maybe the goal next year will be less about fully using things up and more about a rotation and using items I didn’t really get to use this year. In any case, good success overall!

The list:

  1. Hourglass Dim Light powder
  2. Bare Minerals Bare Pro Powder Foundation
  3. Cerave sunscreen
  4. Juice Beauty primer (deluxe sample size)
  5. Bite Beauty lipstick
  6. Sephora green color corrector
  7. Tarte Amazonian Clay color corrector
  8. Colourpop supershock shadow Frog
  9. Benefit eyebrow pencil
  10. Elf putty primer (deluxe sample size)
  11. Ilia lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  12. Tarte lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  13. Tower 28 gloss (deluxe sample size)
  14. Sleek Face Palette (darkest contour shade only with use of the light bronzer shade as well)
  15. Makeup Forever Lip Liner
  16. Makeup Forever powder (deluxe sample size)
  17. Laura Mercier secret brightening powder
  18. Coola spray (sample size)
  19. Maybelline setting spray (travel size)
  20. 1 mascara of any type
  21. Benefit tinted eyebrow gel
  22. Ofra liquid lipstick travel size any color

Bonus items:

elf eyebrow wax
Stila lipstick
Pan of blush
Mac foundation
Clinique eyeliner
Pretty Vulgar powder

Painting Chevrons

I finished my third shawl out of the Painting Shawls book. I have decided to knit all 13 so only 10 more to go! To add a bit of interest I decided to use a neon yellow as a framing color. I feel certain that many of my shawls will have neutral or subdued framing colors so choosing something really different appealed to me.

For the other colors I used a combination of my handspun yarns, Miss Marja’s handspun yarns, my hand dyed yarns, and commercial yarns.

This was a genuinely fun knit and I am glad I gave it a try.

I immediately cast on for two new shawls out of the same book, one to work on during work lunch breaks and the other to keep at home. The two I am now working on are painting diamonds and painting squares. They are going well! I’ll have to remember to get some progress photos. But, I do also intend to take a bit of a break once the fall mystery knit along begins.

Painting Honeycombs

In my ongoing but somewhat delayed goal of knitting all the shawls in the Painting Shawls book, I finally finished the second out of thirteen projects. This is painting honeycombs (small) shawl.

I used alpaca from my stash, it’s been in my stash for over 10 years. I paired that with a recently finished handspun 3 ply and I just knit the pattern until I was out of handspun.

I worked on this project during my work lunches which means that it’s hard to get sick of it since it’s just a “bite or two” at a time. An hour here, and hour there. But I admit I was pretty glad when it was done as it felt like it was dragging on.

Oddly, the day I finished this I soaked and blocked it and then sat down and finished my third shawl out of the book. I’d been keeping that one at home to work on but have had so much other stuff going on that it took me an equal amount of time to finish. It’ll be a while before I have a place to block that shawl so I won’t be able to post it for a bit.

I did start my 4th shawl from the book over the weekend so that I could bring it to work for my newest lunch knitting project. And, if I have time this evening I’ll start the 5th shawl from the book to have as my at home project. However, I see that westknits mystery shawl info is going to come out soon, and I do plan to take a break and do the westknits mystery shawl again this year. We will see how far I get on shawl 4 and 5 before that consumes my knitting time.

In Spinning

I’ve been doing a fair bit of patio plying over the past few weeks despite the fact that we have newborn puppies in our home. For the first two weeks, Mama dog did the vast majority of the work, we were mostly there for clean up duty and to keep mom hydrated and fed.

I had been working on this large two braid combo spin for ages. I made a 2 ply yarn out of it, and there’s over 1700 yards of laceweight now.

While I had been letting the singles rest for the above project I began spinning the singles of a loop bump I had recently purchased. Once I finished the laceweight plying I immediately chain plied the loop singles so that I could finish a second yarn.

I think this one turned out very pretty even though it is by no means perfect. I took such a long spinning break that much of my yarn feels like I am trying to recapture skills I once had. Which is fine, there’s only one way to recapture that and it is to practice. The yarn is a worsted weight though it does have a fair bit of variation.

22 in 2022 Project Pan Update #8

It’s been another month and that means another month of use on my project pan items. Here’s where I was last month:

I was feeling good about progress on some items last month but was perplexed about the lack of any pan at all on the blush. Here’s where I am this month.

Tons of pan on that blush!

A quick overview of the other items. The Stila lipstick is very close to being done now. I feel confident I could finish that by next update. The tarte jelly glaze is done. The makeup forever lip liner is done. I had been very careful not to put the cap on too far so that I could use up the last dregs of the liner but at some point it got stuck in the cap so there’s nothing I can do about that now. Honestly it was extremely close to being done.

I believe I’ll be done with the powder by next month or the month after. Same with the blush. Unfortunately I haven’t used the foundation at all and I have used the supershock eyeshadow extremely sparingly. I have been using the brow gel daily though so I know good progress is being made despite the fact it is not visible.

In the end, while there are some products I thought at the beginning of the year I’d like to pan, I just haven’t. And so the “bonus” list has been great since I’ve kept working on some of those instead. I’ll still hit my 22 despite having lost all desire to work on a few products on the original list.

The list:

  1. Hourglass Dim Light powder
  2. Bare Minerals Bare Pro Powder Foundation
  3. Cerave sunscreen
  4. Juice Beauty primer (deluxe sample size)
  5. Bite Beauty lipstick
  6. Sephora green color corrector
  7. Tarte Amazonian Clay color corrector
  8. Colourpop supershock shadow Frog
  9. Benefit eyebrow pencil
  10. Elf putty primer (deluxe sample size)
  11. Ilia lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  12. Tarte lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  13. Tower 28 gloss (deluxe sample size)
  14. Sleek Face Palette (darkest contour shade only with use of the light bronzer shade as well)
  15. Makeup Forever Lip Liner
  16. Makeup Forever powder (deluxe sample size)
  17. Laura Mercier secret brightening powder
  18. Coola spray (sample size)
  19. Maybelline setting spray (travel size)
  20. 1 mascara of any type
  21. Benefit tinted eyebrow gel
  22. Ofra liquid lipstick travel size any color

Bonus items:

elf eyebrow wax
Stila lipstick
Pan of blush
Mac foundation
Clinique eyeliner
Pretty Vulgar powder

The Grand Reveal

A puppy story!

Our sweet Fishbone foster dog had her puppies on Saturday. When I got up Saturday morning I noticed she was acting not quite normal. And I knew it was the day because we’d been tracking her temps and her temps dropped as they are supposed to right before labor and delivery. She suddenly didn’t want to be in the living room, didn’t want to be around our dogs, and wanted to be somewhere private.

So, I spent all morning in the puppy room with her while she did her work of laboring. By around lunchtime I could visibly see her contractions. After lunch she had curled up in my lap for comfort, but then had three extremely strong contractions in a row, all of which she yelled through. She thought I did them TO her so she ran and hid in her kennel. After I got her calmed down, I got her out of her kennel and shut the door as I didn’t want a baby born in a kennel.

She ended up having her first puppy on the floor of the puppy room outside her whelping box at 3:23 pm.

A little blue boy with a full tail we called Dirty Walt, weighing 7.5 ounces. Fishbone wanted nothing to do with him and that was perplexing, so I did the work of getting him out of his sac and moving. I then got into the whelping box myself. She promptly followed me in to the box which was good. What I didn’t realize in that moment was that she didn’t want much to do with Dirty Walt because she was about to have her largest puppy. She was concentrating on that. Only 14 minutes later at 3:37 pm, Marlin arrived a whopping 9.5 ounces at birth.
He’s a brown boy with a full tail and a black face. He’s also got a little bit of white on his chest. Now mama Fishbone was able to get down to work at mothering her puppies. Which she did, absolutely beautifully.

For the first puppy, I was on my own. It all happened so fast, and I’d called to Mr. Ink that we were going to have a puppy but apparently he thought he had more time. After this, Mr. Ink took the yelling Fishbone was doing seriously and he got back in the room for the puppies. As someone completely green to the process, after Fishbone hollered through the birth of two puppies, I assumed it was normal and no one had mentioned it to me.

After Marlin, Fishbone got a bit of a break. And the rescue owner was able to get there so we had an expert on hand. Fishbone settled in with her first two puppies while we waited. And waited. Eventually we decided we needed to get her up and moving as it had been an hour since her last puppy and we never want to go two hours between puppies. After I took her out, I could visibly see strong contractions again which was encouraging. Finally, at 5:09 pm she had her third puppy.

Sturgeon is a little red boy with a white blaze and a bobbed tail. This was when we began to realize that these puppies were just going to be a surprise in their coloring! Honestly, I’d expected brindles and black puppies. But these puppies just weren’t that! Sturgeon weighed in at 8.2 ounces.

Fishbone’s contractions remained strong so we were delighted to welcome our fourth puppy at 5:34 pm. He turned out to be the runt of the litter. Our rescue owner was still there supervising. I did with our runt what I’d done with the other puppies and mama did what she’d done with the other puppies but suddenly our rescue owner said “Ok that’s enough, hand him over!” He’d gone too long without breathing and she’d been watching that. I hadn’t quite known he wasn’t breathing, he was moving, and I was just going on autopilot. But she was able to hold him upside down and rough him up and I was able to suction out his mouth and nose enough to get him going.

Our tiny Loach weighed in at only 6.5 ounces. He matches Marlin in coloring right down to the white chest but has a bobbed tail.

At this point, our rescue owner decided that we were doing great on our own with this birth so she headed back out to her own obligations. I am so grateful she checked in on us, total newbies to dog labor and delivery.

It took over an our for our 5th puppy to make an appearance, we got Fishbone up and moving again so that she could progress her labor. At 6:47 pm she had the first little girl! No huge color surprise here, but she is lighter than her brown brothers and her face is more brown than black. She also has a bobbed tail. Mr. Ink was so surprised by a girl after 4 boys that he insisted I turn her back over and check again. Then, when I confirmed she was a girl, HE turned her over and checked again. Finally satisfied she was a girl, he documented that on the paperwork we were keeping.

We named her Dace, she was born at 7.7 ounces.

We again had to wait almost an hour for puppy 6 who was again a massive color surprise. Dolly Varden was born at 8.3 ounces a total blondie! She was born at 7:38 pm.

She also has a bobbed tail and she has a white blaze. Super interesting coloring on her and I am interested to see how she looks as she grows up. At this point I was just thinking what other colors could we possibly get? And also, how is it that among this litter we’ve had no brindles at all? Mom is a wonderful brindle color, where is it reflected in her puppies?

After getting Dolly Varden situated, which actually took a bit of time because she was a huge whiner but somehow couldn’t figure out she had to open her mouth to get a nipple, Mr. Ink and I decided we needed to figure out what to do about dinner. Knowing that we likely had 8 puppies coming I told him I could not leave her, so maybe some fast food was the way to go. He headed out to a local fast food chain to bring back food and I got mama up and moving a bit again. By this time, obviously, we were both getting pretty tired. Mr. Ink said “Of course you are! You’ve been at this for 5 hours!” To which I told him it had been much longer than that. After all, Fishbone and I had been laboring in that room since like 7:30 am. We just hadn’t had puppies until later.

At this point, Fishbone also started shaking like a leaf. I knew that could be part of the process and part of losing energy. But also, the process had made all the towels in the whelping box soaking wet. So, I decided to give her a full refresh. I put the 6 puppies in a box with a heating pad and then pulled out all the wet towels and put down fresh dry towels. I was delighted to see that this warmed Fishbone back up and she stopped shaking.

Mr. Ink brought back food and put it on a plate for me. Fishbone showed a lot of interest in my food, so I shared my fries with her and she was delighted. So after I finished eating, I got her to eat some kibble. And then Mr. Ink brought in a special treat, an ice cream pup cup for her. She enjoyed that as well, and once refreshed, her energy level returned so she could have her 7th puppy. Snook, a third girl, was born at 8:40 pm and while it’s hard to tell in this photo, I finally got the brindle I had been anticipating. And in another surprise, Snook doesn’t even have a tail at all!

Snook was 8 ounces at birth and secretly this was the point I was seriously hoping Fishbone was done with puppies. On her x-rays I never saw all 8 puppies the vet did and I was truly hoping the 8th wasn’t there. I should have trusted the expert, the vet.

Since my back was really struggling having sat near or in the whelping box all day long, Mr. Ink decided to take over. He wanted me to relax and rest my back but like, there was still so much to do!? So I got a load of grody laundry started figuring that would be the best use of my time. After all, I knew I’d need clean towels again for the whelping box later on and again in the morning. After that I did lay down, sent some photos of puppies to the rescue owner, and express my hope that we were done.

Mr. Ink got Fishbone up and moving and outside again, and it looked like she was pushing again. So back in the whelping box she went but Mr. Ink stayed with her. And then I heard the yell she’d let out with every single puppy so far so I ran in to find puppy #8 had been born. It was 9:57 pm.

Goby was yet another color surprise! He was born 8 ounces and was another with a bobbed tail. Mr. Ink and I argued and argued about his coloring and then determined we were just going to have to wait and see the next day. I called him blue but he wasn’t blue like the first puppy. Mr. Ink called him tan but he wasn’t really tan. We have now determined that it’s likely he’s an odd genetic anomaly called lilac. But we’ll see as he gets older.

Once Goby arrived, I was able to settle down a bit, knowing it was likely we were truly done. Mr. Ink took Fishbone outside again and I moved all 8 puppies to the warming box. I then did a full refresh of bedding for them. I set up the heating pad in the whelping box so the puppies could use it to regulate their body temps when not with mom. Then we got mom and pups all back in the whelping box. I set up the puppy cam so I could keep an eye on them remotely through the night and then headed to bed. Mr. Ink stayed up to listen for more yelling on the off chance mom was going to have a surprise 9th puppy but we are ever so grateful that did not happen.

All in all, a very successful whelping. First puppy at 3:23 and last puppy at 9:57 so overall that’s a pretty quick delivery. Mama Fishbone is a great mom which definitely makes our job easier. The biggest thing I learned after the fact is that Fishbone was having some very large babies for a 25ish pound dog. Apparently it is not normal for a mom dog to yell through all the puppy births. I think we were a little fortunate we didn’t need any intervention. I only had one puppy that did not gain in the first day, little Dace didn’t gain while the rest of the litter gained about an ounce in day 1. Thankfully, in day 2 Dace did a great job making that up with some big gains right along with her siblings. It is utterly mystifying to me that they can grow so fast! I am sure I’ll keep posting photos as they age. While I am not going to turn into a dog maternity foster home, we are grateful to have been given a new adventure in our lives.

Patio Spinning

The past couple of evenings we’ve had some very decent weather so we have been able to spend a little time outside.

I’ve been working on a loop bump while resting the singles I’d been working on previously. I finished the singles for the loop bump last evening.

This has a nice gradient color and I do plan to chain ply it to preserve the color changes. It’s also a little thicker than I usually spin so it should make a nice fluffy yarn.

Once finishing the loop singles, I set them aside to rest and pulled out the singles I’d been working on in order to ply them for a 2 ply laceweight yarn.

I got it started but by the time I quit it was too dark to take a photo. But it was really delightful to be able to sit outside working on a little spinning after all the heat we’ve been having. I hope for more of the same tonight but the temps are back up today and it doesn’t seem likely.

Meanwhile we are still on puppy watch and our Fishbone foster is still cooking them with no signs of giving birth yet. She’s getting larger and doing all that a normal pregnant mama dog does. We can see the babies moving when she’s hanging out on the couch so they are clearly gaining strength as well. We are kind of hoping they keep cooking through the weekend, but I think we’ll likely be cutting it close.

Meanwhile she is doing a great job learning our routines and fitting into our family. She is a little nervous but has gained a lot of confidence in the past week and a half. She’s now happily playing with chew toys and is happy to go outdoors when it is time instead of trying to hide inside. And she’s just so very cute!

Preparations

This post is continued from yesterday’s post where I discuss our surprise pregnant foster dog and how we agreed to take on her and her puppies despite never even having fostered a puppy at all.

The photo of the dog in question, Fishbone.

Our home is not particularly large. It does not have a finished basement. We have 4 bedrooms but each bedroom is quite small. The master bedroom is a little larger, but the largest of the other 3 is less than 8′ by 12′. One of the smallest bedrooms has our personal dog’s kennels in it and it serves as Mr. Ink’s den with his computer and bookshelf and some storage drawers. The second smallest is Miss Butterfly’s room. Since she’s often out of the house these days we moved her into a smaller room so that I could have the largest of the 3 rooms as my craft room. And when I say craft room, I mean craft/makeup/hobby/home office room. To say the room is packed is an understatement. But, everything has it’s place and it works for me. When we have a foster dog we generally also put their kennel in the craft room, so we are accustomed to using my craft room as a foster dog room.

But, in order to have a foster dog who is having puppies, I needed more space. We needed space for a whelping box and space for mama dog to leave the box but still have free access to her puppies. In preparation I cleared out the makeup corner of my craft room, moving my vanity and a credenza into the living/dining area. I had been hoping that would be an appropriate space for the whelping box. But, when a rescue friend came over, she indicated it was too close to the AC vent. So, we moved my new comfy leather chair and put the whelping box where the chair was.

We’d also chosen this room because it had the most “expendable” flooring. Meaning, at some point, we fully intended to get rid of the white carpet, even though we weren’t planning to do it any time soon. Well, our rescue friend seriously turned her nose up at the idea of leaving the carpet, and she suggested that we purchase a roll of linoleum to place over the carpet. She felt this would seriously improve the quality of our lives as we’d save a lot of time and energy on clean up.

So, later that day Mr. Ink went out and purchased a roll. Once home, we also decided that my brand new leather chair needed to leave the room as I’d be very upset if anything happened to it. So that headed to the living room as well. Now, our living room and dining room are stuffed to the brim with extra furniture which definitely annoys me. In order to sit at my makeup desk which I do every work day morning, I have to push the chair aside. There’s really no other way about it unless we put the furniture in the basement but honestly I don’t have the energy to break my back doing that when in 3 months I’ll just have to bring it back up when I put my craft room back together.

The new set up with the linoleum does seem a better option though. What you can’t see is my sit to stand desk which I’ve put in a standing position so that we can keep items up there and dogs cannot access them. The linoleum did not reach all the way across the other side of the room, so we moved a bookcase over there and we plan to put a puppy pen system up across the far end of the room to block off the door and keep the total dog access smaller. That way the only access given is to areas with linoleum covering the carpet.

Closer to the time she has her puppies (probably a little over a week left) I’ll remove the dog bed and add a bunch of soft bedding for her to nest in and rearrange. But for now, we just want her to be comfortable hanging out in the whelping box, eating some of her meals there, and getting in and out comfortably. She’s a nervous girl so it’s taking a bit of time to get her to be comfortable with the different spaces in our home.

So, that’s where we are right now in our preparations. Now we wait, x-rays on Friday to see how many puppies we may be having, daily temperature taking begins wednesday so that we can see the drop that indicates labor may start, and in the meantime, we bond with Fishbone and keep integrating her into our home. I’ve been doing some simple training with her and she’s very smart and happy to train. she also loves doing zoomies in the yard with our dog Rose and likes to roll in the grass in the evenings. And she snuggles. She absolutely loves to snuggle. She’s a great little dog and I am so glad she’s entered our home for the next few months.

Foster Dog #15 (and then some!)

After our previous foster who was adopted by her forever home toward the end of May, we took a bit of a fostering break. I knew that we had some busy life stuff going on so I gave myself the date of end of July and then I just volunteered as much as possible in June and July.

When we began fostering over 2 years ago we always said we weren’t going to take puppies. Only female dogs (who won’t pee on Mr. Ink’s landscaping) who are smaller so that our particular dog Fury appreciates them. Over the years the age of the dogs has become younger and younger, I think the youngest we’ve taken was 6 or 7 months old. When we agree to a dog this young it’s usually due to some medical issue, and in the case of the youngest dog, she’d needed a leg amputation (and she had been starving so we needed to bulk her up.) She was one of our favorite little fosters so we definitely didn’t mind that she was on the young side for our home.

Due to some unexpected mill releases there was some foster dog shuffling in our organization and we ended up agreeing to foster this lovely small dog who looks a little like a tiny boxer.

She’s about 10 months old, so a little younger than we typically take but within our comfort range of ages. We agreed to her a few weeks before she was due to arrive via transport, so I prepared myself as I usually do to accept a new foster in our home and we waited in great anticipation for Saturday, her arrival date.

On Thursday I got a message from the rescue that said “Call me.” Which, honestly, was an alarming message! I called, and we were then told that no one at the shelter we were pulling from had noticed that our little foster dog was pregnant. I was shocked, let me tell you! The rescue made the immediate decision to save her anyhow whether our family was willing to keep her or not. Having puppies in a shelter is awful on the dogs and often fatal for the puppies. But now our family had to make the decision, were we willing to foster her and her litter of puppies or did we need to let someone with puppy experience foster her? Factoring in to this was that there was no other appropriately aged and sized dog that we could take, so we’d be giving her up just to take an even longer and unintentional foster break.

Mr. Ink has always been the major driver behind the no puppies in our home policy. So, I told the rescue I’d run it by him and we’d see what he said, but I was not at all hopeful that the answer would be yes. Then, after work, I went home and spun on the patio waiting for Mr. Ink to come home. Miss Butterfly also came home from her job to be there when Mr. Ink received this news as she wanted to be involved in the decision. Once he came home, we told him our very surprising news and asked him what he thought. And to my surprise, he did not save me from myself, but instead expressed a desire that we have the litter of puppies at our home.

I told the rescue we’d take her anyhow as long as they were willing to provide the support and knowledge we needed to get through this experience we were totally unprepared for. The other foster homes asked later how Mr. Ink was taking the news, so I asked him. And he expressed that while he has been a stepfather 3 times over, he’s never been a father and never experienced the miracle of birth. So he figured this is his chance. We then got to work making a list of names for our puppies.

Fishbone, our tiny little foster dog, 28 pounds and about 2 weeks away from giving birth, arrived on Saturday afternoon. She’s a gorgeous and extremely sweet dog. She gets along beautifully with our dogs. She’s a nervous girl. I don’t think she’s ever been inside a house before. It took about an hour of training to get her to enter our home on Saturday, all of which was done by Miss Butterfly. Which I fully appreciate because I can’t be carrying a pregnant dog in and out of the house every time she needs to potty which is pretty much every half hour because being pregnant is hell on a dog’s bladder in the same way it is for a human.

We spent the remainder of the weekend prepping for our anticipated little school of fish. I have been given some literature and I am caught up through birth and about the first month before my brain was just too full for more information. I’ll talk more about getting prepped in a different post.

But suffice it to say, our family is going on a grand adventure together this year without ever leaving our city.

Graveyard Project Pan Update #2

Last update on my graveyard project pan was June 11, and I knew I wasn’t going to be updating strictly monthly. My goal was to update after I had worked through each and every shadow on of the BH cosmetics zodiac palettes. Which I did! So let’s start there.

I enjoyed working my way through these. But at the same time there are a lot of shades in here that I just don’t really care to wear on the regular. My absolute favorite shade is the Aquarius of the original zodiac palette, it looks gold but is kind of a gold/green duochrome. By far the most stand out shade in both palettes. I have thought about depotting these palettes pretty regularly but I think that they are really lovely the way they are even though I don’t really want to wear all the shades.

This endeavor was under the Collecting Cobwebs heading, and I am going to do the same type of eyeshadow usage goal for the next update. Again, I won’t update until I work my way through all of these. My plan is to use every shade of every Too Faced palette I own. That’s Sweet Peach, Chocolate Gold, and a christmas palette I picked up a few years back. The christmas palette has blush/bronzer/highlighter as well, which I also will work my way through.

Sweet Peach and Chocolate Gold are fairly well used palettes. The christmas palette less so. I am going for the goal of using every eyeshadow in my collection at least once this year, so this smaller challenge furthers the larger challenge.

For the rest of the products, here’s where I was at the beginning of June.

The mermaid palette was not in last month’s rotation, it’s a leftover from the previous month.

For this month, I am adding in a powder. The mac powder I was using (pictured above) is too light for this time of year. When I wear it, it lightens my foundation and that looks cruddy while I have been outdoors regularly and am a bit more tanned. So, I am adding in my Rimmel Stay Matte powder which already has pan in it, it also goes well under the collecting cobwebs heading.

This month’s progress. The two setting powders are collecting cobwebs and the rest are resurrection products. The Tarte poreless smoothing primer I am making fantastic progress on. I actually began using a tool with this to scrape out the side. This might be a bit of a deceiving photo as I scraped out the areas that had the least amount of product and now am left with larger amounts. But I would say that I am about halfway through using this up and am really hoping to power through it by the end of this project. If not the end of the project, certainly the end of the year.

My cover FX palette has seen a fair amount of use. My original goal was to hit pan on the bronzer, the blush, and the brightener. But now I want to finish up the bronzer completely. After I took this photo I repressed the bronzer, adding in a bit of the darker highlighter as well, and it is now sitting more in the middle of the pan. This will help me use it up easily.

I have not yet hit pan on the brightener, but I’ve been mixing it with the lighter highlighter since the summer is the only time I can use that highlighter. So progress on the brightener has slowed considerably! And the blush is a blush so it’ll take time to hit pan. In fact I fear I will not hit pan by the end of this project. But I’ll keep after it and try.

The eyeshadow that I use as a primer setting powder I also repressed as it’s hard to get any use out of it with everything concentrated at the edges.

with the Rimmel powder I am rolling in, I am really hoping to finish this one. Or at least get as far as possible during the warmer weather. I am concentrating my brush on the outsides of this one as I want to wear away the edges that are still quite full.

All in all, good progress toward some longer term goals. If I finish this bronzer, I will have finished 4 pans of bronzer this year which is amazing. I had two I finished in the sleek cream contour palette and then earlier this year I finished an hourglass bronzer. All of them had been worked on prior to this year but being able to finally finish them this year is very motivating.

I likely won’t have another update until end of august or beginning of september now, that’s a lot of eyeshadow to work through! But hopefully because of this, the next update will be interesting!

22 in 2022 Project Pan update #7

I am sorry to report that I have no empties whatsoever this month. However, I am still making progress on what I’ve been working on and I should have an empty next month for sure.

Last month:

This month:

What I am working on seems to have dwindled somewhat and while I should add more items in, I just haven’t.

The benefit gimme brow I am trying to use every day I wear makeup now, and while I’ll never finish it by the end of the year, it’s likely to dry out and get to a point it will need to be tossed this year if I keep after it.

The Tarte jelly glaze sample is extremely close to being done, this one will be done next update for sure.

The makeup forever powder doesn’t seem to have made much progress, and that’s likely because I am only using it to set concealer. It’ll be gone by the end of the year though if I just keep using it.

The pan of blush I frankened and repressed has been used, maybe about 15 uses over the month. But, I don’t see any sign of new pan at all despite good use over the past few months. I do hope to finish this by the end of the year but I don’t know if I can!

My Mac foundation I only use on the weekends and I don’t always use makeup on the weekends. Last month the progress was so small that I didn’t mark it, so this month looks like good progress. But really it’s just normal progress. The pump I have on the bottle doesn’t actually fit the packaging and I think I am getting very close to not being able to use the pump anymore. That’s the point I’ll really feel like I’ve made progress.

The Stila lipstick I’ve made great progress on! I feel closer than ever to being done. I measure it at the highest point on the lipstick so really it’s within a few months to being done.

The colourpop supershock shadow has seen use, and I have somehow really managed to disturb the shadow now, which feels like making progress. I really should get in there and smash it all back into place. I use this pretty regularly to add a little extra sparkle to any eyeshadow I am using. I used to rotate through a number of shadows that served this purpose but now I am exclusively using this one in hopes to finish it up.

And finally my makeup forever artist color pencil, I’ve also been really working hard at this one. It’s been great for using lipgloss over top and honestly I’ve managed to use up two sample size lip glosses completely this way, ones I never even documented in this project. It’s really almost finished as soon I’ll be unable to sharpen it further.

So, I still sit at 18 items finished out of the 22 goal. I will certainly have one more item used by next update if not two. And then it might be a longish slog to finish the last few items. But I am happy with my progress and excited to see how the next few updates go!

The list:

  1. Hourglass Dim Light powder
  2. Bare Minerals Bare Pro Powder Foundation
  3. Cerave sunscreen
  4. Juice Beauty primer (deluxe sample size)
  5. Bite Beauty lipstick
  6. Sephora green color corrector
  7. Tarte Amazonian Clay color corrector
  8. Colourpop supershock shadow Frog
  9. Benefit eyebrow pencil
  10. Elf putty primer (deluxe sample size)
  11. Ilia lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  12. Tarte lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  13. Tower 28 gloss (deluxe sample size)
  14. Sleek Face Palette (darkest contour shade only with use of the light bronzer shade as well)
  15. Makeup Forever Lip Liner
  16. Makeup Forever powder (deluxe sample size)
  17. Laura Mercier secret brightening powder
  18. Coola spray (sample size)
  19. Maybelline setting spray (travel size)
  20. 1 mascara of any type
  21. Benefit tinted eyebrow gel
  22. Ofra liquid lipstick travel size any color

Bonus items:

elf eyebrow wax
Stila lipstick
Pan of blush
Mac foundation
Clinique eyeliner
Pretty Vulgar powder

Painting Columns

I mentioned in a previous post that it is my intention to knit all the shawls in the Painting Shawls book, all 13 of them. And I just finished the first!

This first one I chose to knit is Painting Columns. The majority of this yarn is knitpicks palette I had in stash. I’d been saving that yarn for ages to knit some colorwork mittens or a hat. But, I never got around to it, never became inspired to do it, so I decided that this could be used another way. The faded blue is handspun that I created years ago. It is woad dyed, and a fair amount of the woad dye washed out, or lightened, when I washed the shawl. I knew that it would as I had not rinsed the skein after dyeing it.

I do not typically knit half circle shawls, so I forgot how long the last rows take. They feel like they are flying along pretty well until you get toward the end and then suddenly it’s such a slog! My next pattern from this book will be a scarf or stole, so that I do not have to deal with the increases and then sloginess of the last rows of a shawl. Particularly a half circle shawl!

But all in all, I am pleased with this project and I am glad I started on this 13 shawl endeavor.

Yard Spinning

Spinning has slowed down some due to a number of factors. First, the storms. We’ve just been having severe storm after severe storm and in between, high heat and humidity. These things don’t leave time for patio and fenced yard spinning.

Also, we’ve been busy! Transporting rescue dogs, getting stuff done around the house, working, volunteering, agility classes. Just busy!

I wanted to spin yesterday but we got hit by another surprise storm that left all the patio furniture soggy, so I did not. I won’t have the opportunity this evening either.

So, here’s where I am with my current project.

This is two different colorways of fiber, but I’ve combined them again as they are close enough to look nice together. I am working on a 2 ply laceweight yarn, and with 8 ounces of it, the yardage will be very high on this one. Since I only have half the singles done, I know it’s going to be a long time until I am done with this project but I am so excited to find out what it looks like when it is plied up! I really do hope I can find some time to work on this project this weekend.

Graveyard Project Pan Update 1

On May 4, I posted the start of my graveyard project pan, a project I’ve always wanted to do but never had the space for. It’s time for update 1.

Resurrection products last month:

With the cover FX palette, my goal is to try to hit pan on the blush, bronzer, and brightener.

The NYX cream shadow (in the cover FX palette) the goal is to use up.

The tarte smoothing primer, goal is to use as much as possible.

Here’s the update photo:

I have already hit pan on the bronzer! I am going to keep using this as I attempt to hit pan on the other two pans. I have been using the NYX cream colored shadow to set my eye base but I don’t use it every time. It’s hard to tell if much progress has been made, but there’s so little in there I am not concerned. And, the tarte primer I made a nice amount of progress on though it may be hard to tell. I am really working my way down one side in order to be able to see progress evenly as I update. Originally my goal was to use as much as possible, but now my goal is to use this up. I feel that my progress is pretty good, and even if I don’t finish it before the end of October there’s a good chance I’ll finish by the end of the year.

Collecting Cobwebs last month:

My goal was to use each eyeshadow in the palette at least once, which I did. There were a number of shadows I used 4 times over the month. I have an ongoing project of using each of my eyeshadows once this year, so I am going to roll in new palettes in this category.

The mac powder I’ve been using almost every time I use makeup. It’s a domed product and I am not sure it’s going to be easy to see any progress at all, but I do feel I’ve worn down the dome significantly.

Here’s this month’s photo:

And now to roll in something a little more challenging for my eyeshadow palettes. There’s a total of 48 shadows plus two highlighters here, as I am going to work my way through my BH Zodiac and Zodiac Love palette.

This is rather a large undertaking, and will likely take me more than a month to complete. I’ll hold off the next update until I have completed this portion of the project. I’ll be recording each use and likely each shimmer will get used once but the mattes more than once. In the past I’ve had a lot of trouble with these shimmers staying on my eyelids and not creasing so I am likely going to experiment a bit with what types of primers I use with these. Then I need to write down my results so that I can remember what works best!

Many times I’ve considered depotting these palettes and only keeping the mattes but I am glad these are intact for now. Hopefully I can find a way for the shimmers to work well for me.

That’s it from here! I am thinking that this year’s project pans have been some of my favorite. They’ve been rather reasonable and not too crazy making. Good visible progress and some flexibility built in. I wish the same for you if you are a project panner!

22 in 2022 Project Pan update #6

Last month had been great for progress, and I am delighted that while I finished fewer items this month, it was another pretty good month. Here’s last month’s photo:

And this month:

I finished 3 items this month, the Coola spray, the amazonian clay color corrector, and a mascara. So, when including my bonus items, I am at 18 used up products out of 22.

A quick overview of the other items-I have been consistently using the make up forever powder, but only under my eyes, so the progress is slow. There’s a little blue line on the washi tape that indicates where I am now.

The mac foundation-progress is slow! While I am slightly under the line I made last month on the washi tape, it wasn’t worth marking again. But I do feel good about how much I’ve done with this over the year and I think I will be able to finish it. It’s just that it does not work for me at work, as the masks remove this foundation quickly. So, it’s relegated to days off foundation and I don’t always wear makeup on my days off, obviously.

I am happily working on my benefit eyebrow gel, but this will likely dry out before I use it up.

I did not mark my tarte lip jelly because it’s too close to being gone to mark. I really enjoy this and use it fairly regularly.

I have used my frankenblush as I do very much want to get this finished up this year but there’s a lot more of it now that I scraped the edges and mixed it with some highlighter. Plus, it’s rather a cool tone and we are in a season in which I tend to enjoy wearing some warmer toned blushes.

My makeup forever artist color pencil is going well! This is generally what I am wearing on my lips at work, this as my base with a gloss overtop. Since we are masking more than we were, this is a good product for switching between a mask and no mask.

The colourpop supershock shadow is something I keep around for the moments I want a little more sparkle on my eye look. I don’t think I used it much over the past month. Slow progress!

And, my stila lipstick-while I did use it, marking it would have not worked, as the progress was minimal. Again, it’s dark and cool toned which isn’t my preference for a more summery makeup routine.

All in all though, I am pleased with my progress and excited to keep going. The jelly glaze will be gone by next month for sure. I may also be able to finish the powder. The lip pencil is getting quite close too, but I am not certain that’ll be gone by next update.

The two items I am absolutely determined to finish no matter what this year are the lipstick and the mac foundation. I would love to be able to say I finished 2 lipsticks in one year! I have lots of foundation so I am eager to finish up one that doesn’t stick to my face as well as others. So I really need to get to concentrating on those again, even if I just use the lipstick a couple times a month.

Anyhow, that’s it from here, with my master list below. Have a great weekend!

  1. Hourglass Dim Light powder
  2. Bare Minerals Bare Pro Powder Foundation
  3. Cerave sunscreen
  4. Juice Beauty primer (deluxe sample size)
  5. Bite Beauty lipstick
  6. Sephora green color corrector
  7. Tarte Amazonian Clay color corrector
  8. Colourpop supershock shadow Frog
  9. Benefit eyebrow pencil
  10. Elf putty primer (deluxe sample size)
  11. Ilia lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  12. Tarte lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  13. Tower 28 gloss (deluxe sample size)
  14. Sleek Face Palette (darkest contour shade only with use of the light bronzer shade as well)
  15. Makeup Forever Lip Liner
  16. Makeup Forever powder (deluxe sample size)
  17. Laura Mercier secret brightening powder
  18. Coola spray (sample size)
  19. Maybelline setting spray (travel size)
  20. 1 mascara of any type
  21. Benefit tinted eyebrow gel
  22. Ofra liquid lipstick travel size any color

Bonus items:

elf eyebrow wax
Stila lipstick
Pan of blush
Mac foundation
Clinique eyeliner
Pretty Vulgar powder

Painting Shawls, Works in Progress

I had such a delightful time with my Quadrangle Spires shawl that I purchased the Painting Shawls book so that I could continue to knit westknits patterns and stash bust with them. My intention is to work my way through all 13 patterns. I have no idea how long that will take but I do know that I have enjoyed my westknits projects more than anything else I’ve knit over the past few years.

Now that I am doing way more spinning than I was previously over the past few years I am already concerned about the potential yarn stash growth. I had knit down and given away my stash to a point of…relative comfort in the room which I am using as my craft room. I really don’t want it to expand, I still want to keep knitting it away.

So, I immediately started contemplating how to choose the first pattern I would knit out of this book. I had some great suggestions from friends on FB. I landed on starting with the small honeycombs shawl since there are two honeycomb shawls and I am unlikely to want to knit them back to back.

It took me some time to land on an appropriate yarn pairing but I ended up using some undyed alpaca as the solid color and one of my most recent handspun yarns as the colorful accent. I really enjoyed knitting this, but ended up bringing it to work to work on during my lunch breaks as I didn’t have a work project.

Then I went stash diving again the next evening to see what I could come up with for the painting columns shawl, and that’s what I’ve been working on all weekend. For this one, the yarns are all knitpicks palette I had in stash except for one handspun of mine which I woad dyed pretty early on in the pandemic.

This one has gotten quite a lot of progress as it rained a bunch this weekend and I ended up indoors more than expected. Since taking this picture I finished the current section and am on to the next. Of course there are a whole lot of stitches on the needles now, so progress is a lot slower than it was! But I am already contemplating which will be the third shawl in this series since this one is knitting up so quickly.

Quadrangle Spires

I finished my quadrangle spires shawl and it was an absolute joy to knit from start to finish. I just couldn’t get enough of the pairing of the handspun yarn and the light color framing it.

It was actually too large for me to photograph horizontally so I chose instead to get a photo of each side.

This project sent me down the rabbit hole-I purchased the Painting Shawls book and have now started two of the 13 patterns out of that book, with the full intention of knitting all of them. These are the shawls that are really inspiring me lately and they are fantastic stash busters as well.

More Fenced Yard Spinning

Spinning in my fenced yard has been so enjoyable and productive! I went back and looked at what I’d spun over the previous 3 years and it averaged to one skein of yarn per year. There were many times I thought perhaps I should sell my spinning wheel. But the answer was just to give myself a place to be outside safely with my dogs.

I finished this 3 ply combo spin, 655 yards. I realized at this point that my skills were rusty. Not surprising considering the very long break. This yarn is either DK or worsted weight, I didn’t check. it’s certainly not sock weight yarn.

Over the past year I had been working on spinning some singles onto support spindles but never completed or plied the project. While I was plying the above project I decided to complete the singles so that I’d be ready to ply that skein as well.

This is a sock weight 2 ply yarn, 625 yards. It’s a great blurple color with lovely bits and bobs in it.

I immediately grabbed 2 more bumps of fiber for another combo spin and got started. 8 ounces of fiber spun into 2 ply laceweight will definitely take me a bit longer than these projects have!

Fenced Yard Spinning

At the end of last year I began to ask myself what changed? Why was it that while I used to sit outside spinning for hours on end previously, I never did anymore, and basically only spun about a skein of yarn a year? Why was it that my motivation for spinning utterly tanked?

The answer was a number of things. First of all, I realized at some point last year that my eyesight was failing and getting that taken care of did help me commit more time to the crafts I enjoyed. Second, I do have a lot of hobbies which take away from some I used to do regularly, like spinning. Thirdly, when I foster rescue dogs I do almost no crafting whatsoever as I am busy training and caring for the foster and my own dogs. And fourthly, we got dogs without a fenced yard, and so when Mr. Ink was outside which was all the time since he loves working in the yard, then I was inside with the dogs. This was when we had a discussion about fencing in the yard.

And it worked!

Just as soon as the yard was fenced I wanted to Be Outside, and was able to spin 6 ounces of singles within the first few days.

I then plied those singles into a lovely 3 ply sock weight yarn, adding 785 yards to my yarn stash. Isn’t it gorgeous? If the weather holds, I may not get a lot of inside work done this summer. In fact, I am already off and running with my next project.

I am doing a combo spin, with these two colors. It’s a bit of a stretch, I generally keep tones more similar on a combo spin. But I wanted to change it up this time. I have a total of 10 ounces of these, so it’ll be a pretty large project when all is said and done. I have one bobbin out of 3 spun into singles. But, vacation is over, I am back to being quite busy, the weather is cooler again (not sad about that really) and it’s going to rain for a few days. So my progress has slowed. But soon, soon I’ll be back on the patio spinning while my dogs play in the yard!

22 in 2022 project pan update #5

I am a bit late on this post, but not actually late on the update. My 4th update posted April 11. The last time I wore makeup this month was May 15. So, the update photos are fairly accurate. I’ve got a nice amount of empties again which is lovely, including a bonus empty.

Here’s the progress photo from April:

Since there were a nice amount of empties, I chose to take a photo of just the empties for this month.

I finished the elf putty primer, the maybelline setting spray, the cerave sunscreen, and everything I wanted to finish out of the sleek contour palette. The bonus item is a pretty vulgar powder, not only did I finish the pretty vulgar powder but I then depotted another powder into this container and finished that as well. I’ll only count it as one though.

And the progress for photos and roll in items:

I made only the tiniest bit of progress on my mac foundation. This is technically a “bonus” item but I am really quite determined to finish it. And since work just went back to full time masking, I may make some good progress on this again in the upcoming month. I’ll prioritize it again.

I have the makeup forever powder sample I put in the larger laura mercier secret brightening powder container, and I removed the previous marks and put washi tape to mark the current progress.

I am very close to being done with the amazonian clay color corrector from tarte and perhaps I will be done next month.

I keep working away at my colourpop supershock shadow in frog, it sits on my vanity and every time I need a little extra sparkle I use it.

The pan of blush was repressed after the last update, I ended up adding a bit of leftover highlighter I was trying to finish up to give it more glow. It has worked well and I am enjoying the product in this new way, but there’s a lot more of it than I imagined there would be. I think it’ll be months before I finish.

Tarte Jelly Glaze is likely to be done next month since I’ll be using it again under the masks at work.

My stila lipstick made a tiny bit of progress but that progress is likely to stop again for a bit while we ride out this latest increase in cases. Plus it is really a dark lipstick which is more suited to the fall and winter.

My makeup forever artist color pencil saw some good progress over the last month as I was using it with a lipgloss over top for a nude lip. I really enjoyed that and will continue to do so but probably not while we are all masked up again.

And I am rolling in two items from the list. The benefit gimme brow and the coola setting spray with spf. I did not realize the coola sample, which I used once, had so little product in it. But since that’s the case, I imagine I can finish that up quickly.

So my list as it is right now:

  1. Hourglass Dim Light powder
  2. Bare Minerals Bare Pro Powder Foundation
  3. Cerave sunscreen
  4. Juice Beauty primer (deluxe sample size)
  5. Bite Beauty lipstick
  6. Sephora green color corrector
  7. Tarte Amazonian Clay color corrector
  8. Colourpop supershock shadow Frog
  9. Benefit eyebrow pencil
  10. Elf putty primer (deluxe sample size)
  11. Ilia lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  12. Tarte lip balm (deluxe sample size)
  13. Tower 28 gloss (deluxe sample size)
  14. Sleek Face Palette (darkest contour shade only with use of the light bronzer shade as well)
  15. Makeup Forever Lip Liner
  16. Makeup Forever powder (deluxe sample size)
  17. Laura Mercier secret brightening powder
  18. Coola spray (sample size)
  19. Maybelline setting spray (travel size)
  20. 1 mascara of any type
  21. Benefit tinted eyebrow gel
  22. Ofra liquid lipstick travel size any color

Bonus items:

elf eyebrow wax
Stila lipstick
Pan of blush
Mac foundation
Clinique eyeliner
Pretty Vulgar powder

That has me at 15 completed items out of 22 though not all of them are from the original list. I don’t mind, the bonus items were placed there in case I had some struggles using some from the original list. All in all another good progress month that I appreciate.

New Fence Day

After old red fence came down and the first load was hauled to the dump, I got the rest of the old red fence into the pick up. We did not have a full load so we didn’t do another dump run, I figured we’d wait until we finished the new fence build as there might be items to haul again that we could add to the second load.

New fence day was a warm Saturday but it was much nicer than the hotter days previous. Our all volunteer build crew showed up around 10 and we got started! The night before we had set the end and gate posts with cement as these needed to be secure to measure from, but day of, we finished the rest of the post holes. I learned how to use a post hole digger this time, expanding my fence build volunteer knowledge.

Then we got started on the rest of the build!

All of the new fence area was previously covered by the red fence. This new fence provides us more privacy. We ran into a bit of a snag here, the neighbor had a very large junk tree he didn’t want to cut down yet. We did not measure carefully enough, and when we got to the tree, realized that our fence would not fit where we had the posts if the tree stayed. So I figured I’d give it a shot, and asked if I could go halfsies with him on a new tree to replace the junk tree, and he agreed. So we had a surprise tree removal as well! I am not sure what our solution would have been if he didn’t allow us to take down the junk tree.

We got all closed in between the garage and the house which is fantastic!

And we are closed in between the house and the other neighbor’s fence.

And one more angle of the back fence.

We did not complete the job until perhaps 6:30 pm and we had lost most of our crew by then, but the remainder just kept pushing through to get the job done. I learned to use a cordless drill and the majority of the screws along the long back fence were placed by me. I got into such a routine that I ended up deciding that I should get myself a cordless drill for the next fence build so I can be more helpful than just holding boards. It’s at the end of next month so I have a little time to do a little research.

Once complete, our dogs had a wonderful time exploring the yard, even though they truly acted like they were doing something wrong as they are so accustomed to being on leashes! Since the build, I’ve spent absolutely as much time as possible outside with my dogs and my spinning wheel and it has been absolutely glorious.

And as a side note, the week before fence build day we’d received our most recent foster dog, so she, too, gets the benefit of being outdoors unleashed!

Old Red Fence

We moved into our home in 2015 and with it came an old red basketweave fence. And no trees. Mr. Ink set about adding trees and plants and making our back yard beautiful. And one year I set about replacing the truly cracked and rotting boards of that old basketweave fence, I replaced 23 boards that year. I stained them red before replacing them on the fence and it held for a bit longer.

Despite the old ref fence, our yard was not fenced in. And over the years as we’ve added dogs and foster dogs to our lives, I dreamed of fencing in the yard. But Mr. Ink was worried about his plants, so instead over the past 5 years I’ve been taking dogs out on leashes for their potty time. That’s a lot of time taking 2 to 3 and once 4 dogs out at a time to go potty on leashes. I mean, we foster rescue dogs, and as such, some dogs have to go out way more than others if they are still learning how to live in a house.

Last year I finally convinced Mr. Ink that we really did need to fence in our yard and we came to an agreement about it. But that meant that old red fence had to come down. After all, it was leaning badly and many more boards had rotted and split.

But, the rescue I work with does fence builds on a volunteer basis. We all get together and put in the time and energy to build the fence and the foster home recipient of the fence pays for materials. I’d been participating in the fence builds for others so it became our turn to be on the receiving end. When trying to set a date, the one in May that we came up with was the same weekend as Miss Butterfly’s graduation and graduation party. That didn’t seem entirely convenient, but in the end, I decided to go for it. I took the week before off, and scheduled the build, knowing that I had to remove the old red fence prior to the build.

The scheduling worked out well though, because my parents were in town to assist with the tear down of old red fence. It was not in good shape. Some of the posts had completely rotted through, so without the weave, they just came down.

The tear down job was easier than I had imagined and it ended up being that the hardest part was getting all the pieces to the pick up truck and then cutting them into small enough pieces to put in the truck and take to the dump. The tear down took one morning, the clean up and finishing of the more stubborn posts went into the second day. But it did get done before fence build day!

29th Stocking

Over the years, really since 2009, I’ve been making christmas stockings for new arrivals in our family, as well as for decor for our own home and a few other pieces for fund raisers and so on. I was surprised to find out that my brother will be welcoming his fourth child in July and the first thing my sister in law asked for was a christmas stocking for the next baby. So I got right to work on the 29th stocking I’ve knit since 2009. To be honest, the pattern is getting a little old and I would prefer not to be knitting them anymore, but I’ve got a reputation and a tradition to uphold. So, I got to work, with the intention to get the stocking done before my parents arrived for Miss Butterfly’s graduation.

I was successful, and yesterday this stocking headed back to the east coast to be provided for the family anticipating their latest arrival. Done and dusted, at least for now.

It’s been a hot second

And I’ve got so much to blog about, and yet, it has been WAY too busy to get that done. I’ll start with what is likely the biggest news in my life, Miss Butterfly, my lovely daughter, graduated from High School. She graduated with Excellence, meaning that she completed over 100 hours of community service. She did that two ways, she volunteered very regularly before the pandemic at a fairly nearby YMCA camp, and she also earned a lot of these volunteer hours with the dog rescue we work with. To be honest she completed far more than 100 hours but that was the cut off for her “excellence” designation. Here she is, below, at her graduation party with her boyfriend and dearest friend.

I am not entirely sure what her future holds right now, but she’s got herself a thriving little business of pet sitting so that’s what she’s doing at the moment. In fact, she’s so busy with it that she often has to have someone cover her overlapping days. But folks really want to use her services and are very pleased with what she’s able to provide their pets.

In related news, she’s taken up crochet. I taught her to chain stitch and then she took it from there, and she’s created these two items:

They are adorable and she did a great job on them. I am very impressed! I don’t do this kind of detail work so it’s fun to see her enjoy it.

There’s a ton more to post about so hopefully I’ll keep up the momentum and get it all written down now that the graduation and party are over with.

A Spring Thing

Recently there was a spring sale on Westknits patterns. I decided that since some of my most favorite projects over the past 2ish years have been Westknits mystery knit alongs, I’d indulge in one of these patterns. I ended up choosing Quadrangle Spires. I had a nice chunk of handspun I’d created out of Loop! batts years ago and I wanted to knit it into something interesting.

Since I really wanted to use yarn from stash, I went looking for an appropriate pairing. I did not have a large amount of a solid color in the yarn weight I needed, so instead I decided to hold 3 strands of undyed laceweight yarn together. One strand is alpaca and the other two are cotton.

Honestly this combo isn’t the most ideal, but it is using up some of my stash. And that, for me, is a big win right now.

This is the middle section of the scarf. Each triangle is knit building on the previous triangle, and then the square is seamed together in one section. Sort of like piecing a quilt. I didn’t love the seaming, and I did have a nightmare last evening that I had done a very poor job on it, but ultimately it looks great and I have moved on to the next section. And it holds true that I am enjoying this pattern very well!