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I am Beat or Acknowledging How Much Time You Put in To Your Craft Business

I am swamped at my day job. I am the kind of busy where I am days behind on all of my projects, I accomplishing my daily tasks at an almost feverish pace, and my office is a mess because cleaning stuff up as I go takes too long. (I realize I will likely have to spend two hours cleaning it at the end of the month, but it will be two hours well-spent, let me tell you.) Then I grab the kiddo from school and try to give him my full attention til dinnertime, and then it’s back to work on Tiny Dino Studios.

While I am sure I have mentioned it before, I am trying to spend as much time on my yarn business as I do on my day job. It’s a lot easier to quantify the day job as 30 hours a week, because I am scheduled to be there. This yarn thing is another story. When a so-called hobby overlaps so closely with work, it can sometimes be difficult to draw the line between work and play. I think about it this way: if I am knitting a sock for myself out of yarn I dyed, that is not work. If I am photographing pictures of said sock and yarn for the blog, that is work. If I am designing a sock, any time I touch it anything to do with it, it’s work. I have never quite reached 30 hours a week yet, I am averaging closer to 20. Since I never seem to make it 30, I always feel like I am not doing enough. I could always be doing more, and I feel guilty for taking some time off.

This is stupid, and I am trying to stop.

I have a pretty full schedule most of the time. Yesterday, for instance was day job from 8-3, doing yarny work on my lunch break, picking Athrun up from school, Athrun time for two hours, Athrun off to his dad’s so I can go write at the coffee shop for an hour and a half and then I spent two hours teaching a knitting class. Then home for a glass of wine and bed.

It’s no wonder I’m tired today. In 13 hours, I had a two hour break with my kiddo–and while writing and knitting classes are all totally and completely fun for me to do, they are still work.

Today, I feel like sitting on the sofa and doing nothing–but I have put in 6 hours of day job and 3 1/2 hours of knitting job so far, and I feel like I should keep going. To admit that I just don’t have it in me is a battle I don’t usually win. Normally when I feel like this, I tell myself I am going to relax and do something not work related after dinner, I get through an hour before I start to feel lazy and pick up something work related to do.

The thing is, I have no reason to feel guilty or lazy.

So tonight, I am going to revel in my non-working, and congratulate myself on everything I have accomplished over the last couple of days. (And eat some damn ice cream.)

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Mid Summer Pursuits

Did I mention I started a new job? A real permanent job? I honestly can’t remember. It’s a great job with an unambiguous title: Retail Coordinator. And I get to work for Kansas–not the government, which is all around pretty good in my book–but folks it’s a lot to learn and take over all at once. I can’t sleep at night my mind is so busy processing it all. I don’t feel rushed or panicked or unhappy–quite the opposite really–I am just behind–through no fault of my own. But the catching up is taking most of my brain power, and I forget to start writing a blog post until 5 minutes before it’s time to leave for work, and we’ve all seen how well that has been working out.

The rest of my energies have gone into the following pursuits:


These peaches became ice cream. I have been experimenting with ice cream making this week, which I have never ever made before. See, I used to be baker, but then I gave up wheat (and sugar, but am less strict about this)* and baking was no longer an option unless I wanted to spend a fortune on nut flours. Ladies and gentlemen, these last few months have seen me pretty much the definition of broke. Broker than I have ever been. Nothing was purchased that was not a necessity, and fancy flour-substitutes are the definition of luxury. Given dietary restrictions, I made my ice cream with cream, evaporated milk and peaches soaked in a couple teaspoons of honey. It was good, and now it was gone. Alas, no photographs were taken of the final product, but I will be continuing to experiment.

Tonight I attempted to make Mocha Gelato, but I am pretty sure I didn’t let the mixture cool enough before churning it. The upside is that with very few ingredients, milk, honey, cocoa, instant espresso, vanilla, I created a really great tasting chocolate / coffee soup that I am freezing never-the-less hoping it doesn’t turn into ice. Less sugary substance is better. Next, I really want to attempt making ice cream from coconut milk and get rid of the dairy all together. I don’t have trouble with dairy, but I know folks who do, and I think it would be fun. Plus, I. Love. Coconut.

While it is summer and ice cream making is the appropriate thing to do, I have been doing all sorts of inappropriate things with wool.


Like knitting sweaters in 100+ degree heat.

I finished the body of the surfer tee, and only have (cap) sleeves to knit and the neckline to clean up. I knit a size I thought I might shrink down to by October and it fits perfectly now. It will still look good on me in October if I continue losing weight at this rate. After that, I will probably rip it out and knit a different sweater, because knitting sweaters is fun and I have been impressing msyself with my new ultra-economic ways.

At the same time, I have been working on my sister’s belated birthday gift.

It’s a laptop cozy for her new computer that she is taking to CHINA. With fang buttons. She will love this. Even if knitting in garter stitch for that long was a horrible idea.

Then I started a completely insane project for July.

A thick, worsted weight cabled sweater. It’s already warm in my lap, but the squishiness of the cables and the roundness of the yarn and the fact that I will have the perfect sweater finished by the time I actually need it this year when the weather turns keeps my needles going. The sweater was in the most recent WEBS catalog I received, and when I saw it, I knew it was what my Cormo Rusticus (100% cormo) yarn would become. The sweater is Pearl Street Pullover, and the yarn was a one off, but I bet they might have something fun a Juniper Moon Farm.

Thursday I try my hand a teaching my first sock knitting class. Wish me luck.

* I keep meaning to write a short post about how, after half a decade of struggling with my weight, I am finally losing it again. The easiest way to say it is that I gave up grains (yes grains, not just wheat) and sugar. I don’t think that blog post is ever going to happen in a way that I will be satisfied with. I don’t think food should be religion, and every time I try I sound like gluten-free evangelist. If you want to know how I modified my lifestyle and am losing weight, check out Mark’s Daily Apple. The lifestyle that website describes is pretty close to what I am doing, and full of great information.