Altered Dog Crate

Well we have a new puppy.. yup  his name is Tucker!.. (aka Kracken) poodle/terrier mix.

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Cute little bugger but I have been  crate training him so this crate has been in front of my end table beside my chair in the living room. Everyday I have walking around this crate thinking.. geeze something better has to be done about this.

So I kept thinking and came up with an idea to use my end table over the top of his crate. Well you know about best laid plans.. yup the table top was 1/2 inch to short for the top of the crate.. oh no!  what?.. I hate when this happens.. hahahaha.. Wouldn’t it have been awesome if the table had slipped exactly over the top of the crate?  So I went to the shop and got the screw driver and proceeded to remove the legs from the table.. yup.. that should work right?.. well NO… by the time I put the top on the crate the end table was about 4″ taller than I wanted it and it just balanced on the top of the crate. You can see all kinds of potential catastrophes right? Also you want to be able to have the crate be as inconspicuous  as possible.. This would not do for me.. so.. back with the screw drivers and decided to remove one of the shorter pieces under the top part that connected the legs.

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That side would be the front side of the table. It was easy enough.. take out the screws that held it to the top, give it a little snap and off it came.  VOILA!!!  Now it fits nicely over the crate..It had three sides that go down over the top of the crate ( the two sides and the back) hence eliminating the chance of the table top sliding around.  The  one thing.. now the table is too short… hahaha.. I know I am OCD when it comes to that so I had to figure out what to do next.  GOT IT!.. I had to find something to lay on top of the crate about 1″ in thickness so the table would be at least almost to where I wanted it to be. In to my studio I go.. I found a cork board.. 3/4″ thick I think.. didn’t measure..I was just happy it would work, and it did!  Here are some pictures of the finished (not quite happy yet but it will work) project. Tucker doesn’t seem to mind that the cover is on top, the door will swing open flush to the couch so no more running into the door. Easy peasy!!!!…

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The first picture is the crate sitting on the floor in front of my end table. That really bugged me sitting out that far into the living room but I wanted him to feel comfy by going in his crate and still be near me. So.. the last picture proves he approves the new digs. Just have to find a deeper board to put under the table top to raise it another inch and I will be a happy camper. yay me!

Now to move the catch all basket that was under the table in the first place. And it truly was a catch all so now that problem is also solved. Next to tape the plastic bag with the screws in it to one of the legs and then store the table legs in my studio so I can reassemble the table when the crate gets moved to another area.

That was my morning and now I plan to sit back now with a hot cup of tea and watch a movie while I work on a pattern that I am designing.

And on that note. Have a great weekend and enjoy the Olympics

~~~MSH

 

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Debt, Debt and how I plan to pay it off

Well I saw a segment on GMA this morning how a lady paid off her credit card debt in 15 months. They didn’t go into it a whole lot but they explained how she did her reverse debt. I sort of understand how she did it, I think. It is all so confusing.. lol. Her way was a bit extreme as she paid off $24000 in debt in 15 months.. Now being retired I would love to say that I  actually earned $24000 for a year…hahahaha.. so she and her husband are making decent money to be able to rethink her finances and start dumping money onto her card to be able to do that. That is not an option for me so I plan to at least start somewhere. Every little bit will help.

Here is how I see her doing it.. it is like when I am out and I am doing my errands and I think.. geeze.. I am hungry.. maybe a short trip to McDonalds?.. Now last year that would not have been an issue.. I would have gone through the drive through and spent over $10 for a meal that firstly was not good for me but totally unnecessary at the time. This year I think twice because my eating habits have changed mostly from necessity. Meaning, my stomach cannot handle fast food anymore so the decision to go through the drive through makes me gag. But.. had I been able to, it would have been $10 out of my pocket and I wouldn’t think twice about it.  So.. what the lady was saying,,, is… don’t do the fast food, keep track of what you would have spent on the trip out that day and put that money on your credit card debt.  Ok.. I see what she is saying! I think that can be done.. so instead of swiping the debit card for that drive through meal, go home and take that $10 and put it on your credit card.. right?  is that was she is suggesting?

That will take a bit of a life style change and that also should not be a problem for me. I will just come home.. and transfer the money directly on the credit card. I plan to do it right away because knowing me I will leave it in the account and then find something else insignificant to spend it on.. “oh lookie  I have extra money in my account”!.. right?.. you see what I am getting at?

So to explain how I will be doing it,,, here goes… I am a seller on Etsy.. digital downloads.. so there is no expense to me except the listing  minimal renewal costs once every three months.. I have my account set up that my sales get deposited into my bank account once a week.. SO!!!!.. every week when that direct deposit comes in, I will put that money received onto my credit card. ( I will actually be rounding up the money) On top of that I will pay the monthly payment requirement. That way I am dumping extra money every month onto my card. Paying down the principal.  All the money from my Etsy account will be paying down the card each month!… I can certainly see how this will benefit me. I am going to see how long this will take. I know I don’t owe much on my credit card, not as much as some people are dealing with, but being retired does not allow me a lot of extra cash flow and I really hate credit card companies making money on the fact that I am just paying the required amount, therefore extending the length of my payments to their company. What can it hurt?.. 

So today is the first day that I took my weekly sales and payed that amount on my credit card.. Let’s see how this will work . After all, how can it hurt.  I plan to set up a reminder on my calendar to check my account for the etsy deposits and take time to immediately pay the credit card with that amount deposited. As well I plan to get an excel sheet started for a reference to see how the new plan is working.   If I have no deposits for a particular week (yes I do have weeks that I don’t sell or the money goes into paypal for the payments) I still plan to put a minimum amount of $10 on the card that week. You really don’t miss $10.

Time to take control!!!!!!!! It’s a new day.

 

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Reflections of 2017

Well I guess it is my time to reflect on 2017. All in all it was a year of discovery, acceptance, and realisation.

 For those that have known me over the past 10 or so  years know that I have put my heart and soul into the local craft/artisan business. Organising these shows as well as participating in some of them gave me the best as well as the worst times of my life and sometimes both on the same day!

Well all that is coming to an end this year. I have made the decision to retire from shows as they got to be more than what I bargained for, or can deal with.  Lately the new slot of vendors and venues have become a whole new breed of entitled all about me people that took all the fun of doing this from me. The last really big show I did really sucked the life out of me. Seriously,,,, I don’t know how I survived it. Anyway it all comes down to respect for each other  and  that respect is gone. I am hoping the next generation that comes up is a better lot of people than the ones I have been dealing with over the last 5 years. Every year it seemed to get progressively worse. God I hope this changes or our society is in a heap of trouble.  This year has been a test for my tolerance.. and I failed that test. I no longer have any tolerance for it.  

 I am truly thankful for all the respect I got from the  long time vendors who truly get it!  They know how much time goes into organising, booking tables, arranging vendors so they complement  each other. Not just the first come, slap them anywhere mentality.  I thank these vendors for standing behind me,, and some in front of me during the good and bad times. It is still up in the air about one show I organise but that might be the only show that I will even think about organising  in late 2018. I think I just need to step back and take a breath. I need a break.

 Over the past years I might have lost sight of some family and friends. I am truly sorry for not trying harder to break the control I was under years ago. I was not strong enough at that time to fight for myself and keep connected with  all these good people.  I should have been stronger.  It was easier being complacent and not make waves to keep peace in my life but I should have realised that by doing that I was losing the peace I was seeking.  With that being said, I have made some good friendships over the last few years but I am still a guarded person who truly has a difficult time being around people (just the introvert in me I guess).  Negative nellies will no longer exist in my life.  This will be the difficult part as I do not like to hurt people but seriously when someone doesn’t take your feelings into account then it should be easy to do,,, right?. I want to do this without having to  crawl into a black hole trying to hide away instead of facing it head on and saying, “I don’t need this anymore.. I can do this!” yes I can!!!!!!

 So What I am trying to do,, no.. what I WILL do this year is work on being a better ME. I have already completed the first goal in my personal weight loss journey  and will continue slowly as that is working for me.  I will be  letting  go of people and situations I have no control over.

Breathe deep~~~~~

I will spend the next month or so cleaning and purging both my studio and my soul.  I am going to take time to relax, reflect and figure out what the next chapter of my life will be. Right now I am just too tired to even think of turning that page but when I am ready it will be easy I am sure of it.

 As a very wise, special person in my life says.. MORE time for ME, my Health,  my Marriage, my Family and most of all my Happiness.  That sounds totally selfish but in all honesty if you don’t take care of yourself first, nothing else can be taken care of, right?

So on that note, I am wishing everyone a Happy, Prosperous and Respectful New Year.

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Sock Monkey Mittens (with afterthought thumb)

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Well I finally got my act together and got the pattern written up for my sock monkey mittens. These mittens are knit on 2 circular needles (my preference) with a bulkier yarn #5 and I use an afterthought thumb. This design goes fast because you don’t have to think about adding stitches for your thumb gusset. Easy peasy style and that is what I am into right now.. ..  easy.. fast.. non thinking patterns. I  find it easy to knit the both mittens at the same time that way you won’t have the one mitten done syndrome.. many’s a time I have knit one mitten and then put it down to come back and knit the second mitten only to move on to something else. I am not saying that my lack of concentration is going.. yeh.. I guess that is exactly what I am saying. So to alleviate that problem I just knit both mittens at the same time. Done and done!…………………………….

Anyway to find this pdf purchase link go to my webpage

Sock Monkey Mittens on True North Knitting

or to Etsy at

Sock monkey Mittens on Etsy

and on that note I am off for a cup of Hot tea and a big ole cookie to celebrate my doneness. Is that even a word?…..well it is now.

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My Pet Peeve

My pet peeve

Beyond a doubt my worst pet peeve is lack of communication!This stems from multiple areas of my life. Everything from vendors to friends to family. People who think that it is acceptable not to respond to emails is my first peeve. My job right now is to fill a craft show with the best vendors I can. I do this as a volunteer and takes many many hours of dealing with people, drafting floor plans, placing vendors so they don’t have an identical vendor next to them, it is all a work in progress usually up to the last week of planning. At first when the applications go out I usually get a ton of applications. I go through them to make sure I have an equal amount of varying crafts and products. When that is done I send emails to confirm, explaining that payment will secure their spot. (and this is indicated on the application form) Some vendors are really great, they either just respond with payment or contact me to say when they will pay. My email and phone number is always available and I have always made it my mission to treat people the way I like to be treated. Good concept right? I go above and beyond what I should be doing but most people that know me, know that is how I am. I just don’t get people lately. In a society that is so socially  connected they think that it is OK to ignore instead of stepping up and saying.. “I’m sorry but I am unable to attend” Simple response  but they think I have nothing better to do than to chase after them for a response. They treat it like they are too busy to take time to respond but don’t take into consideration that I also am too busy to keep chasing them down for a response. So my solution for this particular problem is. Remove them from the floor plan and move on. No need to explain anymore to them. They don’t have the consideration to contact me, I should not feel guilty about taking them out of the show.

Next…People who use you for their own gain!. I call these people inconsequential friends. (which means they don’t consider you important or significant unless they need you for something). Unfortunately I have run into lots of these people during my 64 years. Seriously it takes me a bit to realise this but in the end it usually hits me and I think “Holy crap I did it again” . A good example is, I contacted someone who I considered a friend on Facebook, to meet up for a coffee. Well I don’t know if this person realises that I see when they read the Private Message or not ( or maybe they just don’t give a damn). So, the message was read but this person didn’t have the decency to even respond with, ‘sorry can’t make it” or.. “you suck so I don’t want to meet for coffee” or “I only friended you because I hoped that your relationship was not good and I could swoop in” or “You called me on my fabricated stories, exaggerated stories and outright lies and now I can’t be around you because you know the truth”. Either way I gave it the 48 hour rule (wait 48 hours before you act or respond) then I promptly deleted this person from my list. There are many more recounted stories of this type of problem but I won’t get into it right now. I am sure you have your own accounts and honestly I would love to hear them if you want to respond to this post.

The next one is the exclusion from family matters. I like to keep to myself, not one to blat out there everyday about how my life is going. No one else’s business and I am sure that no one out there really cares if you had coffee and yogurt for breakfast, right? I don’t get the “I have to post something on my news feed or my day is not complete even if it is stupid or boring” 

opps strayed off the tracks for a bit, sorry about that.

Well anyway, that doesn’t mean that I don’t care or I don’t get hurt when this type of thing happens. One in particular comes to mind when family events happen but. “oh I thought I told you” or “Honestly it just slipped my mind” or “I didn’t think you would be interested.” Seriously. I live a short drive away and it seems like it is too much bother to even think or ask? Like I said, communication. I have done everything I could to keep in contact, and to what end! Missing activities because I didn’t find out about it until I see the pictures posted on Facebook truly hurts.    I realise now that I was more than likely purposely excluded (not sure why and not sure I really care at this point) I could read a lot into why but honestly it is not worth my time and effort to explain this behaviour.  At one point I tried for 3 weeks to coincide a good time to drop off a gift when every date seemed to be an inconvenient time. Seriously? Karma will bite the hand that feeds it and I will just sit back and watch.

So in conclusion, treat people with respect and kindness. If a confidence is given to you, respect it and don’t spread it around. If a trust is given to you, wrap it up gently and store it away as it is truly a gift to have someone trust you. Treat friendship like a good wine, savour it and make it last.

Communication is the key in the end. It only takes a minute of your time to respond to someone, or to treat them with kindness. Pay it forward daily. Wave and smile at an unsuspecting stranger, it could be the brightest spot in their miserable day. Send someone a Private message telling them that you are thinking of them and just wanted to say hello.  

What is your pet Peeve?  let me know. I would love to hear your stories.

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Insert Knife,, turn gently

nBeing excluded is one of the worst feelings in the world. From experiencing it as a grade school child to a full blown adult. As a sister, a mother, a grandmother it just plain sucks. There is only so much you can do to insert yourself into someone’s life if they clearly don’t want you in their lives. Oh sure, you get the, “Oh I forgot to tell you,” or.. “Didn’t I mention it to you?”..or “I didn’t think you would be interested”. Not living in the immediate area should not matter. Inclusion is inclusion no matter the distance. Even if you deem that the person probably can’t make it, ask anyway. To be asked means “you matter and we really would like to see you”. To not ask means.. “Honestly, you don’t matter to us” Sound harsh?  Well I hope so!

Ask any child in school  and they will tell you it’s the thing they fear most – it’s not getting bad grades or angering their parents – it’s being deemed an outsider at school, not worthy or altogether forgotten. Well this feeling can carry on through into adulthood. The feeling of no matter what you do, you are still excluded from events, etc. There is nothing worse than realizing that you do not measure up in their eyes. Being excluded just says that “You don’t matter” .. Yes that sounds harsh but repeated exclusions mean just that!. Being left out is an emotional drama that comes in three parts:

 Discovery by the excluded person.

 Distress and the downward spiral it perpetuates, and then

Detachment if you are strong enough to accept it.

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 As painful as it is, there comes a point when you have to let it go. You have done everything you can. The emotional pain when finding out stuff accidentally, by word of mouth or posted pictures can sometimes be too much to bear and in the end not worth your time or tears anymore.  Again sound harsh?  Not really, it is a way of preserving your emotional integrity. 

So in the words of the Frozen Characters.. “Let it Go”   and from this day forward I plan to. I am taking a deep breath and making a change in my life from this day forward. 

So my blatting for the day (heck ,,,, the year) is over. I am stronger than all this drama. I need no one but myself at this point. Time to let some of the scars heal. 

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Introverts unite!

I have always described myself as being an introvert but holy moly I didn’t realize it had gotten more as I have grown older. For example this morning I went to the clinic to get a prescription refill. Normally I am right on top of this and make an appointment with my doctor in plenty of time. Well NoPE!! I had totally forgotten about it. So this morning I had to go sit in the clinic as a walk in. I arrived and noticed that there were only 5 people in the waiting room.. BONUS!!!! So I sat down and made myself comfortable. Well wouldn’t you know it.. a woman two chairs up decided that I looked like I wanted to chat. I answered her in my short (I really don’t want to chat) sentences but she persisted. So I took out my phone and started to read my book thinking she would leave me alone. NOPE.. good god woman go away!… then she decided to have a conversation on her phone and instead of getting up and going out she decided to sit right there and talk loudly on her cellphone. By this time I wanted to scream.. oh.. and on top of that the new receptionist had one of those squeaky high pitched voices that you just want to reach over the counter and slap the child voice out of her. Someone asked what her name was and she responded “Ariel”… “oh nice” the older lady responded.. “Ariel (air e-lle) is a pretty name.. the girl looked and said. “it is Ariel (arrh  e-lle).. ” the older woman looked and the look on her face was.. “isn’t that what I just said?”…hahahah… anyway after hearing her name out loud and looking how her little Ariel self was dressed I almost expected a flood of Disney characters to come dancing out of the office every time she spoke.  And on that note I was called into see the doctor and the nurse did her customary BP test. she looked at me and said… ” oh I will come back in a few minutes to do this again while we wait for the doctor”.. 5 minutes  later she came back, did the test and ahha.. perfect. I asked the nurse.. so what was it before and after.. she laughed and said.. “150/110 the first time and 130/70 the second time”  hahahaha.. I guess the sitting in the waiting room with the disney character and chatty cathy really shot my BP up.. So 5 minutes later I had my prescription in hand and all but bolted out the door. I am really proud of myself for not going ape over the woman who would not stop talking to me. I really need to work on telling people I am not a chatty person. something like “I realize you are just trying to be friendly but I really don’t feel much like conversation right now, I hope you understand” Sounds easy peasy ….right?  but that is hard to do. I would rather just go inside myself and get that blank stare look.

Many years ago I knew I was uncomfortable in crowds. I had people describe me as unfriendly and aloof but at the time I had no idea there was a label for all of that. It wasn’t that I was unfriendly, seriously, I just didn’t know how to deal with being in the company of a crowd of people. For example I had come across a woman I had gone to high school with, many years after graduation and she said.. oh.. I remember you.. we called you the snob because you wouldn’t talk to us. Now seriously? In the old days and I am saying about 40 years ago, no one took notice of mental health issues and as far as I am concerned being an introvert can lead to issues because you are shunned and made fun of, called names, etc. Seriously this comment threw me and I said.. WHAT?  I was far from a snob as I could see it. What did I have that would have presented me as a snob. To me a snob was someone that was rich, had everything and looked down their nose at people. Good grief. I was not from a rich family… far from it.. I wore second hand clothes, you name it. I was shy and didn’t mix well with people and now I realise it was because I was mostly an introvert. I loved being alone, didn’t need to go out and socialize and party. I was really not into that and was very happy not going out. So I guess when I think of it I understand why people called me a snob. I went to school, didn’t join clubs, had one or two good friends during my school years. As I grew older that didn’t change but I still had to take verbal abuse for wanting to be alone. Now that I am in my early senior years I am content with people calling me what ever they want. I really don’t care and I really don’t feel any need to keep explaining myself to anyone. Take me as I am or don’t take me at all. Just leave me with my decisions not to participate in certain things or events and don’t waste your time trying to talk me into doing something I am not comfortable with. I no longer live my life trying to make other people comfortable at the expense of myself. I am better than that! Just understand me and accept me the way I am,,,,simple as that!

So on this note I am off to do some pinterest looking and recover from this mornings assault of my introvertness.   (hahaha is that even a word?…well it is now)

How do you deal with anyone intruding into your personal space?

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