Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Keeping our cool wrap up...

Keep Yer Cool Challenge

While our bill went up up up and up for our electric/gas/trash/water, all in one utility bill, I had found Crunchy Chicken and her wonderful challenge. While we had already bought a programable thermostat and were using it, we could still do better and with the cost of utilities rising, that was just the rest of the push we needed to start. And while I'm environmentally minded, others here are not, so using the rising cost of utilities gave my idea the go ahead. Plus, no one here noticed the change until my son said something about 2 weeks before the END of this challenge. Just like a male! So, here's what we did:

I didn't start up the air conditioning until it was over 80 degrees in the house and then I had it set up for 4 different time schedules.

At 5am it kicked in to cool the house to a nice 78 degrees. (And for those of you saying, well, 80 is only 2 degrees more, why bother turning on the air? I have one word: HUMIDITY!!!) Then from 9am til 4pm it was set to 80 degrees (just cause we're not home doesn't mean the sweet kitties have to suffer during the hottest time of the day. From 4pm until 10pm it was set to 78 degrees again and from 10pm until 5am, it was set at a nice warm (actually comfortable) 82. We also kept all the ceiling fans going as well.

Not too bad, plus, with the cooler weather we actually had, it didn't feel bad at all. I'm not sure how we would've done had there been ALOT of the 100+degree with 80-100% humidity days. Maybe not as well, though I could be surprised about that one.

And yes, we will be participating in the Freeze challenge as well!

Carmel Apple Pie...

SLAGA Fall Picnic 2008
Originally uploaded by mlochk22@
I didn't know what this was to begin with, but soon found out that one of the guys brought in a carmel apple pie. It was simply WONDERFUL!! In fact, this is what it looks like when your almost done:

SLAGA Fall Picnic 2008

yup, that good!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Hospital Picnic 2008

I wasn't there for very long, but here are the pics that I did take!

Fall is upon us...

Originally uploaded by mlochk22@
I find it somewhat ironic that my birthday just happens to be in the fall when, as I get older, I begin to contemplate the "fall" of my life. Good thing I don't think too hard about this subject, because I could seriously get depressed, considering my birthday falls just right.

Today, in fact, I turned thirty.

A whole new decade in which to learn things.

What have I learned so far?

Not to be such a bitch to those you love, because they can, and sometimes will, leave you to find their own path in their lives. And yes, that has happened to me. And I'm getting more okay about that everyday. Somedays are harder than others though.

You can't change any body, only they can change themselves. Yt another hard learned lesson, but one that worked out beautifully in the end.

Don't be a perfectionist. It only hurts you and everyone around you. If you run around "fixing" everything some else took the time and energy (and love, presumably) to do for you, don't go behind them because it's not done the way "you" want it done. Plus, it stops them from wanting to do anything for you ever again. And we won't even get into what it does to your heart and stress levels! Plus, for some of us, it stops us dead in our tracks and keeps us from doing anything at all! The best fix I've found for this is www.flylady.net : trust me, it's worth it!

Take time for you. I'm very busy in my life right now, with school, work, child, marriage, trying to keep some friendships going, etc. I still have to take time for me. So, I picked back up my embroidery, found my crochet hooks, got some yarn, picked up knitting needles and began to do stuff that I truly enjoy. Best site for those of us who are truly yarn addicted: www.ravelry.com . Best wait for a website invite, EVER!! And if you're not into that, do what you are into. It's worth it for you and for those around you.

Don't ever follow the pack. It's too easy to get sucked into something you may not truly believe in by doing that. And that includes everything from politics to religion. I am forging my own independent path in those areas, and encouraging my son to do the same. You should too.

I'm sure there is much more that I could wax poetic about, but why bother? Everyone takes something different out of their own life experiences.

As for the pic: I love fall, it's my favorite time of the year. And I especially love the variety of pumpkins and gourds that you can get this time of the year. These pumpkins were at the Dutch Bakery Amish store in Tipton, Missouri. I love going down there whenever possible, you never know what they might have!

Friday, September 19, 2008

There's no place like home...

Originally uploaded by mlochk22@
Or at least, that's the scene that this pic reminds me of. Cutesy little mary jane styled shoes with my very first pair of completed socks! They are a bit bulky because I used sport weight yarn, not fingering, but living in this area, getting fingering weight yarn seem to be next to impossible. Not to mention, the one (cheaper) store that does sell sock yarn sells some in colors I don't like, to tell you the truth.

Of course, I had to change the pattern some cause I'm sill that way, but otherwise, it was all good. I love this pair of socks and have already started on a new pair for me when my cranky husband demanded to know where his pair was?

So...after listening to him complain, I started him a pair using the magic loop method, which I really love doing! I'm going to do that for mine and Alex's handwarmers (dashing and fetching from Knitty.com). I can get both done at once (which it really why I love the ML.

Alex made safety patrol, and since that means he has to be there somewhat earlier (we leave 10 minutes earlier than before), I have to get out of here!! I will be posting pics more frequently, because I now have a small (wonderful!) camera that I received for my birthday, so easy of pic taking has just gone up! No more big camera to drag around, I now have a pocket sized camera to take with me everywhere! Love it!!!

More to come later! And more pics of the socks on flickr.com, just click the pic to get there!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Just in case you hadn't seen these yet...

Originally uploaded by mlochk22@
This is the new "in" toy for the 5th grade set this year: Bakugan. Yet another import from Japan that my son can't live without! But that's ok, he's paying for it, not me! And really, they are kinda cool! You shoot them onto the "gate card" that have metal implanted on them, and they pop open. They shut up like big-ish marbles and open when they get onto metal. They rock!

So I have a confession...

Originally uploaded by mlochk22@
I love some of the kooky Japanese toys, and this is no exception. However, no matter how much I love it, my cats love it more, trust. And if you don't, you are welcome to see for yourself on some of my other pics!