Welcome to the Fluff! Here I blog my goals, especially my reading and studies, and my ongoing downscaling and using up of material stuff and working towards a more minimalist lifestyle.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

July into August

Greetings!  It's the first day of the new month and time for an update on goal work.

For July I set 30 individual tasks to do.  I completed 11 of them, worked on 10 more and left 9 untouched.  There's something quite well flowing about those numbers, isn't there?  My desire for balance likes that, LOL!

Here's a summary:

Health 
* Remedial Exercises once or twice daily, including at least one wobble board session per day   restarted on 7th and managed to do them for a few days, but I had another illness and was mad busy/tired, so it didn't go too well in the end.  I did something though, so that's better than a slap 'round the face with a wet haddock!
* Keep up food plan, aiming to lose between two and five more pounds this month   I kept more or less to my diet, but not well enough to lose any more weight.  I don't think I've regained any yet, but it's hard to tell at the moment with hormonals.  I'll be in a better position to tell where I am with this after the next period - whenever that might be...  I am sick of feeling gnawingly hungry though! =(  It's so much easier when I'm up to exercising as I can eat more and, for some mad reason, feel less empty!
* Start gentle tone up and flexibility exercises adding a little more every few days/week  Nah, didn't get to this

Domestic and Downscale
* Finish the Go Bag!  What a surprise, I didn't get to it - again!  Really must deal with this during the next month.  So much is actually already done and in a bag (first aid kit, self-heating meals and a few other emergency supplies as well as 2x 5litre bottles of water near the door to grab on the way out and a large folded shopping bag ready to load food from the storage area down there into, and important docs scanned and on 2 lots of cloud storage), but I need to check it all through and plug any gaps.
* Finalise make-up clear-out and give away 'cast offs'   Done!
* Take 15 books to the university book give-away areas   I listed 3 or 4 books on Amazon marketplace and selected about 20 more ready to be taken to the Uni and/or a charity shop (also 18 stitching magazines and 5 more patterns for either donation or e-bay listing).  They just need taking.
* Trip to the tip to deal with junk downstairs   Done!  I sorted it all out and Sir took it. ☺
* Sort out all textiles to go and take them to the charity shop for ragging/Oxfam warehouse   Ready to go, just need taking.

Stuff to buy:
* Buy new bath towel set   Done!
* Digital camera (S)   Done!
* 'Herbal HRT'   Done!
* Display stands (S)   Done!
Unsurprisingly, I managed to do all the buying tasks ok! ☺

Reading and Study
* NRSV Bible Isaiah 30 - end of Jeremiah  Isaiah - Jeremiah 19  had a couple of good runs, then lots of total neglect of this one!
* Complete 10 chapters of 'Relearning to See'   3.5/10
* Catch up kr book study from whilst I've been ill    0.4/2 chapters
* Vocab transfer from WTs   Still not touched, but more added to the pile of mags
* Finish 'Modern Chinese Beginners Course Vol 3'   7/15 chapters - managed half a chapter of this several mornings whilst drinking my breakfast smoothie.  That really helped both to get more of this done and also to stop me wasting time on my tablet first thing, which often eats up a lot more time than I realise at the time.
* Finish Discovering Science Book 3    2/9 chapters.  I got a bit back into it, then it fell by the wayside again, but I really want to finish this course ASAP as I want to sell it on and also get rid of the technology I need to complete it - i.e. video player, old laptop etc.  Same goes for another OU course, actually.  I need to get my finger out.  Maybe autumn will be better once Show season is over for the year??

Creative
* Get to at least 85% on 'Paradise Island' cross stitch   Still untouched
* Rose needle painting and mount in card  (S)  Nope, not yet
* Finish black/rose print t-shirt (first practice sewing straight)   Not got to this yet, either, although I did have to make something up on the machine (see below), and so I suppose there was some sewing straight practice there.  It's hard! :(
* Finish my black chunky cardy   Again, not done.  Hope to finish these last two during August
* Revamp beaded hardanger cushion   Done!  This included remaking up the whole thing on the machine.
* Revamp miniature silk wedding cushion   Done!  I actually just pressed it properly in the end.
* Start on bag making tasks (Sat-Nav pouch, hard drive pouch, backpack, knitting bag, manicure pouch)   Didn't get to these either.  Part of the problem is a lack of deadline for them.
* Make kids' picture books out of magazine picture collection   Ditto
* Mounting C&G samples for show(s)  Done!
* Retouch 'Bluetits and Seedheads' XS and get it framed  (S)  Done!
* Blogging catch up - 'Welcome' post for Pintangle visitors, blog the violet thread painting, the green/cream baby cardy and the anniversary card, plus Show prep stuff.   Welcome post done, but nothing more since.  I've totally gone off the boil when it comes to embroidery blogging.  I only just remembered, as I'm typing this, that I didn't mark my blog-o-versary back in late June either!  That makes 2½ years now that I've been lax with blogging.  I think the bottom line is that I'm just not that bothered about it any more.  I keep thinking of posting schedule ideas and so on, but it's really not happening and I know that, although I don't want to delete it or 'close' it as such, deep down I'm just no longer interested in building it up and maintaining it.  I'll just post here and there if and when I want to.
* Enter and attend Bingley and Ryedale Shows (S)   Done! Won 12 prizes (=£45!) and 1 trophy. :)

So, that was July.

August?

Well, apart from reprising all the formerly neglected task, I've signed up for a watercolour challenge, so that should be fun to complete.  I also have one more Show this month in a couple of weeks' time.  Not sure how much I'll enter as I don't have many new pieces and it's one that requires 'new and unwashed' items.  I'll give the manager a call and check if there's a time limit in mind for 'new' and see what I have that might fit the bill.

Now to sort out the full list in the usual place.  Just gimme a few mins to type it up......

Minimalism update post coming up soon too!

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2017

Saturday, 1 July 2017

From June to July

Another very not stellar month, but now I know why:

I have a Vitamin D deficiency.  Apparently, it's very common, especially at higher latitudes when the sun isn't often high enough to produce UVB rays (or even out at all!).  According to my blood test results info, one should have over 75 nmol/L of 'base' Vitamin D (actually a pre-hormone), and I had only 26.  So, I've got some huge dose tablets from the doc to take each week and I bought a spray for the intervening days so I can get levels back up more quickly and steadily, and then keep them there long-term.  I've been getting as much sun on my skin as I can, but the sun isn't a frequent visitor to my area, so that option is quite limited.  I've started hinting about winter sun holidays too!!!

So, that's why I've been a tad on the unwell side lately.  Vitamin D affects so very many processes and I read that there are Vitamin D receptors all over the body.  I never realized it was so important and, frankly, would never have thought of it myself, so I'm grateful for a doctor who was on the ball enough to think of it.

Anyway, I've done a bit of goal-work over the past month and here's a summary based on last month's goals list, including some starting points for July's list (full list in the usual place):

Health 
- I mostly stuck to my low oil diet etc and don't seem to have re-gained any of the 7 or 8 pounds I'd lost from mid March to mid May, so that's been a comfort.
- Over the last week or so I've been able to get out walking most days again, so exercise has re-begun.
- I also fished out my wobble board and have begun posture toning with that as well as doing a few shoulder remedial exercises when in pain.   
* I need to get all the above back on a regular basis and hope to lose 2-5lbs more this month.

Domestic etc
- I haven't finished the Go Bag, but I have started work on it in that I bought one or two supplies to go in it and also thought carefully about the most likely hazards we might encounter.  Fire is the most likely, I would say.  Most of the city would need to be completely submerged before we had any flood risk where we live and, apart from freak winter cold snaps and wind storms, that's it for any natural disaster risk.  We're also out in a leafy suburb - a low risk for terrorist attack.  But I really do need to get this task completed.
- I cleaned the bathroom window at last.
- I pretty much decided which cosmetic products to give away and have just held onto them as I'm trying to match up a couple of eye-shadow shades in a palette (might de-pot those 2 in the end).
- Books to give away and other stuff is mostly ready, just needs taking.
* We still need to make a 'Tip trip' and clear out the clutter downstairs
* I also still need to buy the bathroom towel set.  I've found one I like the look of, it's just a question of getting it.

Reading and Study
- I read the NRSV through to Isaiah 29, so not as much as I'd hoped, but at least I closed the gap and made some progress with it.
* Read to the end of Jeremiah this month
- I only did a bit of 'Relearning to See', but it was interesting and * I want to crack on with it.
- Made very little progress with any catching up, but I did move on a couple of chapters in both my science and Chinese textbooks, so that was a bonus.

Creative
- I finished the green and cream baby cardy, complete with pretty stitchery.
- I started the pink and white one, but am having to re-think this one as the yarn is using up way too quickly and, as it was meant to help me use up odds and ends, I'm not thrilled with the idea of having to buy another ball.  Might change to another pattern that better lends itself to two colour work.  It being a bamboo and cotton mix yarn adds to the problem as it'll be very much a summer garment, so I'm going to have think about making a larger size, ready for next summer.
- I made a blackwork type card for Sir for our anniversary and plan to put that in a Show or two this summer.
- Finished the button band on my black cardy, but was really focusing on baby knits as they really do have a shelf life.  I hope not to grow any more, but would be concerned if the infants didn't!
- I did both of the blog interviews and one of the 'welcome' posts for the article that went live earlier this week on the Kreinik Threads blog.
* The Pintangle TAST interview is due to be published on 13th of this month, so I'll be getting that 'welcome from xx' post done soon.  Maybe even this weekend.
* Actually, I have a lot of blogging to get caught up on, so that's something I can aim for this month.

So, I think I completed five of the June goals and worked on 11 more.  Considering the rather unfavourable circumstances, I don't think that's too bad. ☺

I'm now going to sort out the July list in full.

Friday, 2 June 2017

Changeover from May to June

Well, May was a bit of a damp squib!  Hardly surprising seeing that I was either ill, had one of my headaches/light headedness or was horribly tired (i.e. could do very little) for almost, if not every single day of the month!  June has also started off on a low note, but where there's life there's always hope, so I'm setting out the plans for the month as usual. ☺

First of all the results of the 20 goals set in May. I met five of them and worked on six more - two quite close to completion, so at least something was accomplished.

During May I:

* renewed my passport and was very pleasantly surprised at how quickly I got it back - only 8 days from sending off the application to what I think was their own courier delivery of the new one.
* decided not to read any more of a book I'd been neglecting and crossed that off.  Obviously I wasn't that interested if I hadn't been reading it, so onto the give-away shelf it went!
* studied half a chapter of my science book.  I probably would have read more, but I got to a TV/video sequence and that broke it up as I need to get the telly out for that. (Yes, seriously!)
* knit the baby hat to match the cream matinee coat I'd done before, which was on my list for the month, plus knit one complete cardy and one almost complete that weren't on the list (although one was on my 2017 goals list).
* embroidered a hardanger sympathy card.
* completed knitting all the main pieces of my black chunky cardy and began on the first button band.
* made a two-tone t-shirt at a 'sewing with knit fabrics' workshop on 10th.  Just need to stitch the bottom hem in place, but first urgently need to practice sewing in a straight line!!!
* read the intro and first chapter of 'Relearning to See', which was quite exciting.  Looking forward to getting on with that, although I've noticed I read less these days in favours of watching TV on my tablet computer.... Not good!
* did some of the NRSV Bible reading: Ps 119-Prov 6, Song 1 - Isaiah 6.
* continued with my lard reduction plan as far as I could given the circumstances.  I couldn't exercise much, or even do my remedials very often, but I did stick to the food part of it.  I haven't weighed myself for a while owing to hormonal crazies, including water weight fluctuations as it's just not 'steady' at the moment.  I decided to dispense with 'weights and measures' until things have settled again.  It seems menopause is also at least partly responsible for infections and slow recovery as it can knock your immune system halfway across town and make you crashingly tired.  It'll pass in time. ☺
* finished up a lip gloss quad I'd been working through for a while (from my use up list)

Here's what I'd like to do in June, several of which are quick-ish one-offs and finish-ups:

Health 
* Remedial Exercises once or twice daily (when not ill!!)
* Keep up food plan (maybe even get down to 9st this month if hormonals settle and I can get a reliable set of measurements)
* Start tone up and flexibility exercises adding a little more every few days/week

Domestic etc
* Finish the Go Bag! Sir said he'd be doing this with me last week, but it didn't happen....
* Clean bathroom window
* Finalise make-up clear-out and give away 'cast offs'
* Take 15 books to the university book give-away areas (probably need a couple of trips for this one - weight!)
* Trip to the tip to deal with junk downstairs (need to organise this with Sir)
* Sort out all textiles to go and take them to the charity shop for ragging/Oxfam warehouse
* Buy new, navy blue towel set

Reading and Study
* NRSV Bible Proverbs 11 - 31 and Isaiah 7 - 66
* Read 10 chapters of 'Relearning to See'
* Catch up kr book study from whilst I've been ill
* Catch up some of the WT articles
* Vocab transfer from Chinese WTs
* Do some language and science study

Creative
* Get to at least 85% on 'Paradise Island' cross stitch
* Do some other embroidery (prob. meadow scene and/or rose NP)
* Finish black/rose print t-shirt
* Finish my black chunky cardy
* Finish green/cream baby cardy
* Knit pink/white baby cardy
* Start on bag making tasks (Sat-Nav pouch, hard drive pouch, backpack, knitting bag, manicure pouch)
* Make kids' picture books out of magazine picture collection
* Deal with overdue blog interview questionnaires and prepare a welcome post for any extra traffic their publishing might create.  (Oh, and yes, I changed this blog name back to the original.  The other two I tried just didn't feel right.)

The Bingley Show is 22 July, so I'm going to need to get some entries sorted out for that too.  Some of these might make it into the pile, we'll see how they turn out and what else I have on hand.

Let's get cracking! ☺

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2017

Monday, 1 May 2017

Results are in for April, plus goal list for May.

... and it wasn't tremendously inspiring last month either!  I think that I do really well on my goals the first time I set a series after a long break.  I feel really motivated and keen to get as many as possible completed.  After that, it just goes down and up and back down again until I drop the idea for a while.  Then we start again with a major productivity push!!

Last month I completed eight of the 28 items and got one more as far as I was going to for the time being as it needed, basically, re-starting when I had more experience.  What I did get done was:

* Deal with fridge freezer  Done!
* Clean bathroom wall - dust on artex  Done!
* NRSV Bible Psalms 63 - Song of Solomon  Ps 63 - 118 & Ecclesiastes
* Finish 'Getting Along With the Chinese'  0.6/11 remaining chapters
* Finish reading 'The Help' and pass on to Ellie  Done!
* Catch up WT & LMMWB bits and pieces  LMMWB bits done, WT stuff not only not done, but increased in quantity!
* Embroidery on cream baby knit  Done!
* Finish knitting pink scarf  Done!
* Start black chunky cardy  Done!
* Sort the sizing for my own cable jumper and get on with it  Just finishing sizing problem, then shelving until 2 simpler knits are done. More experience needed!
* Start on bag making tasks (backpack, knitting bag, manicure pouch)  bought backpack pattern
* Finish invisible hemming pink skirt  Done!
* Get stretch knit fabrics (from winter fabric collections) for future clothes sewing projects  Done!

Everything else was totally untouched during the month - including all but two of the red tasks from last time, from which I can conclude that putting them in red doesn't work for me.  To be honest, I'm still doing the stuff I'm actually bothered about.  When it comes to the Go Bag, I think my laxness in attending to it shows how concerned I am about disasters happening in the area.  It is part done and has self-heating meals, a good first aid kit, painkillers, Savlon soap, insulating blanket thingies and some other stuff in, plus I've scanned and uploaded my personal ID documents etc to two different cloud services and there are two large bottles of water near the door ready to grab in an emergency, so I'm not entirely unprepared....

Moving swiftly on!!

Here's my list for May, much less detailed in some areas and reinstating the health/exercise categories.

Health 
* Remedial Exercises twice daily - when not ill!!
* Lose 4lbs more - I've lost 7lbs already (started a shave off 10st), so goal weight at end of month will be 9st 2lbs.  I've been losing an average of 1lb per week since mid-March and am very pleased with progress so far.
* Start tone up & flexibility exercises adding a little more every few days/week

Domestic  & Admin
* Finish that blasted Go Bag, if only to get the dratted thing OUT of the living room and downstairs near the door where it belongs.
* Clean bathroom window
* Renew passport - we didn't have the money for it last month, but this time it should be ok.  A friend in Germany died and I don't even have the option to go to any memorial service for her as I can't travel internationally right now!

Reading and Study
* NRSV Bible Psalms 119, Proverbs, Song of Solomon & most of Isaiah
* Finish 'Getting Along With the Chinese' from 4.6, or I may just dump it as I have so many other titles I've plainly lost interest in actually reading.
* Read at least half of 'Relearning to See'
* Catch up WT bits and pieces, which increased from last month.
* Vocab transfer from WTs
* Do some language and/or science study

Creative
* Get on with 'Paradise Island cross stitch    65-70% complete so far
* Do some other embroidery
* Make a t-shirt - at a workshop on sewing with knit fabrics I'm going to on 10th
* Finish black chunky cardy
* Knit Veli baby hat
* Knit Tang baby cardy
* Start on bag making tasks (Sat-Nav bag, backpack, knitting bag, manicure pouch)
* Make kids' picture books out of magazine picture collection

Let's see how it goes.

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2017

Friday, 31 March 2017

Goals for April

I'm not even going to bother posting the end of March stuff, 'cos it was such a lousy month for goal work.  In fact, it was a really slow month for most things and I can't think that I got much done, except that I seem to have lost 2 or 3 of the 15-20lbs I hope to get rid of so that I can get back into my clothes and look better in the ones I plan to make.  So, that's good, but I haven't finished a single book, met a single reading challenge, done more than a stitch or two of embroidery, studied much at all....  I did knit a premature baby cardy and trimmed it up, as well as got around to trimming up a knit from last month, but that's pretty much all.  I actually only completed one goal from the March list of 25! Must be an all time low.  Well, the only way is up, right??

I loved Glenis's idea of putting a task in red that had been on the list more than 2 months already, so this version here will show those items in embarrassing vibrance.  Some are already on their 5th time on recent lists alone, i.e. were carried through from lists from previous years! [Imagine that horrified emoji here!!!]  The two in darker red are ones that have appeared in some form twice before, but not quite as they are here (i.e. they just need finishing and/or the project is further on, but still dragging on).

28 items in total this time:

Domestic and Admin
* Deal with fridge freezer
* Finish the Go Bag
* Clean bathroom window
* Clean bathroom wall - dust on artex
* Go through book boxes (3) for any to sell etc
* Renew passport

Reading and Study
* NRSV Bible Psalms 63 - Song of Solomon
* Finish 'Getting Along With the Chinese'  4/15
* Read 'Relearning to See'
* Finish reading 'The Help' and pass on to Ellie
* Catch up WT & LMMWB bits and pieces
* Finish 'Discovering Science Book 3' (chs 8 - 18)
* Complete 'Modern Chinese Beginners Course' vol 3 (chs 59b - 75)
* 'Fun With Chinese Characters Vol 1'  (12 - 40)
* 'Beijing's Courtyards' reader (chs 1 - 5)
* Chinese vocab transfer from recent study material - 3 x WTs, Imitate & Kingdom books
* Finish 'Teach Yourself German' (ch 17b to end)
* Re-start 'German in Three Months'

Creative
* Work 'Paradise Island cross stitch to at least 85% completion  65-70% complete
* Embroidery on cream baby knit
* Work on rose thread painting
* Finish knitting pink scarf   60-70% done  Need to measure against another scart to determine final length
* Start black chunky cardy
* Sort the sizing for my own cable jumper and get on with it
* Start on bag making tasks (backpack, knitting bag, manicure pouch)
* Finish invisible hemming pink skirt
* Get stretch knit fabrics (from winter fabric collections) for future clothes sewing projects
* Make kids' picture books out of magazine picture collection

It is, of course, just possible, that these red tasks keep getting neglected 'cos I'm not terrifically bothered about them???  Hmm, worth thinking about.  I keep asking myself how genuinely interested I am in books etc that I keep failing to read or study....  I've got rid of all the definite 'never going to open' ones and have only kept those that have a respectable chance, but I'm beginning to question the respectability of that chance after all now.  We'll see.  We'll see.

One thing I did notice was that I was definitely more faithful to my remedial neck etc exercises when they were on the goals list than when not.  I'll give myself another trial month and then they go back on.

April can only be better than March for results, right?

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2017

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

March Goals List

Here's the list for March.  I decided to drop the 'Physical' category for the month and see how I get on keeping up to it without the accountability element.....  I plan to keep to only buying sweets a maximum of twice per month, keeping oil/fat content of foods low, increasing proportion of raw food, doing my remedial and some stretching exercises and, once the current bout of post-viral and hormonal fatigue has passed, getting back into graded walking most days.

I lost a  lot of time to illness last month and am starting this one a bit under par, but I'm not dead yet, so onwards and upwards! ☺ Regular updates in the usual place.

Number of goals for the month:  25

Domestic
* Take care of neglected recycling - boxes at mum's and water filter cartridges - end month with recycling as up to date as reasonably possible
* Finish the Go Bag overhaul - DO these two this month!
* Give bathroom window a thorough cleaning
* Check over everywhere for 'clutter creep' and get some charity (or rag) bags/sales going as needed

Reading and Study
* NRSV Bible Psalms
* Finish 'Getting Along With the Chinese'
* Read 'Relearning to See'
* Re-start 'Daniel' book study - chs 9 & 10
* Study 'Discovering Science Book 3' to section 12 (from 7)
* Complete DS3   I've put this as a separate goal so that I can at least claim one completion for making a decent amount of progress
* Complete 'Modern Chinese Beginners Course' vol 3 (ch 59-75)
* 'Fun With Chinese Characters Vol 1' No.s 13 - 35 (approx one per study hour day)
* 'Beijing's Courtyards' reader, chs 1 - 4 (Sunday study hour instead of MCBC3)
* Chinese vocab transfer from recent study material
* Finish 'Teach Yourself German' (chs 17b, 18 and supplement)
* Re-start 'German in Three Months' (from ch 7)

Creative
* Work on 'Paradise Island cross stitch - work towards completion, at least 85%
* Start winter design project - some artwork and charting the cross stitch design(s)
* Work another freestyle piece, either another Trish Burr small thread painting or that meadow scene from the Sue Newhouse book.  TBC.  I may even go mad and do both??  Doubtful....
* Finish knitting pink scarf
* Knit white preemie baby jacket  
* Embroider and add buttons to cream and blue baby knits
* Get to grips with sizing for my own cable jumper and make good progress with it
* Make kids' picture books out of magazine picture collection

Business
* Make good use of the 'business hour (10:30-11:30 Mn-Fr) to develop ideas, do research, start writing, whatever - just DO it!

I'm feeling good about this list and I think it looks very do-able.  Just have to keep an eye on my health and remember to be modest - to live within my limits and stop forgetting about them when I'm feeling relatively normal.  This will be the hardest bit.... ☺

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2017

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Goals results for February

I still have a few hours to go on this month's stuff, so I've marked the items as they should be at close of play tonight.  I would have got much more done had I not lost just under half the month to illness.  Grrr!  Anyway, here's what I did get done:

* Take care of neglected recycling - boxes at mum's and water filter cartridges - end month with no extra recycling on hand   Most stuff ready to take
* Clean the oven   Done!
* Finish the Go Bag overhaul  Did you get yours done, G??

Still have recycling on hand, but I did put it out to take on Saturday, then didn't get to go to the relevant place.  It's ready to go later this week now.

* Focusing twice daily   42/56 I didn't do it whilst ill, but otherwise did, so: Done!
* Neck and shoulder exercises on 25 days   16, pretty much every day I could, so I count that: Done!
* Go to bed at 9pm on at least 20 days  lost count, but close enough to say: Done!
* Only buy sweets twice, if at all  Bought once myself and once by Sir, so: Done!
* Continue using eye-shadow almost every day  Done!

I did well on this section, I think.  I did all I could, so I'm counting that as section completed. ☺

* Study 'Imitate' book ch 12  Done! 
* NRSV Bible Ezra to Job   Done!
* Finish final re-reading of 'Learn Any Language'  Done!
* Review 'Chinese Language - Fact and Fantasy'  Done!
* Read 'Contemporary Japan'  Done! Decided after 2+ chapters that I wasn't interested anymore
* Study Discovering Science book 3 to section 10 (from 4)  chs 4 - 6
* Work Physics GCSE revision guide & workbook pages: 21, 22, 23, 24, 25a, 26, 27, 58, 59
* Work Chemistry GCSE revision guide & workbook pages: 41, 42, 43, 44, 46
* Complete 'Modern Chinese Beginners Course' vols 1&2, (ch44-55).  Done!
* Modern Chinese Beginners Course' vol 3   2.5/20
* Chinese vocab transfer from recent mag(s) and 'Imitate' book
Finally finish 'Teach Yourself German'  Did vocab write-up from chs 14-16

I had hoped to finish with 6 books, but 4 isn't bad! I'm not far off on a 5th too and have got well on with pretty much all subjects, so given the health imposed restrictions, I'm OK with the results.  Some to carry over yet again, but I did at least make a start on them.

* Finish violet thread painting  Done!
* Work on 'Paradise Island cross stitch - finish trees and sky areas   In progress again.  Land trees and most of sky done
* Start winter design project - some artwork and charting the cross stitch design
* Finish knitting pink scarf  In progress
* Knit cream cardy for Velimirovic baby  Knitting complete (awaiting buttons and embroidery)  Done!
* Get yarns and patterns for my own knits  Done! Started one of them
* Make kids' picture books out of magazine picture collection

Passable progress.  Again, had illness not intervened, I would have cleared the two un-started items of the list, but I'll carry them over to March now.

* Make good use of the 'business hour (10:30-11:30 most days) to develop ideas etc   3
* Complete match up of all social media stuff and on-line digital declutter  Done!
* Post at least once daily on 'business' Instagram account  44 posts over every day but two, so near enough to; Done!.

The business hour didn't go very well.  To be honest, apart from a few initial ideas sort outs, I had trouble thinking how to spend it and ended up using most of the time I was even able to allocate an hour on the study items.  I did very well with Instagram postings - every day but two and I finished the streamlining of online presence stuff.  Need to give this section more thought....

So, final analysis is:

Tasks completed:  17/30
Still in progress:  8
As yet un-tackled:  5

New month, here we come!

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2017

Saturday, 4 February 2017

February Goal List

A few days late, but here it is.  Of course, I've already started on many of them and even got a couple done!

 Domestic
* Take care of neglected recycling - boxes at mum's and water filter cartridges - end month with no extra recycling on hand
* Clean the oven
* Finish the Go Bag overhaul

Physical
* Focusing twice daily
* Neck and shoulder exercises on 25 days
* Go to bed at 9pm on at least 20 days
* Only buy sweets twice, if at all
* Continue using eye-shadow almost every day

Reading and Study
* Study 'Imitate' book ch 12
* NRSV Bible Ezra to Job
* Finish final re-reading of 'Learn Any Language'
* Review 'Chinese Language - Fact and Fantasy'
* Read 'Contemporary Japan'
* Study Discovering Science book 3 to section 10 (from 4.2)
* Work Physics GCSE revision guide & workbook pages: 21, 22, 23, 24, 25a, 26, 27, 58, 59
* Work Chemistry GCSE revision guide & workbook pages: 41, 42, 43, 44, 46
* Complete 'Modern Chinese Beginners Course' vols 1&2, (ch44-55)
* 'Modern Chinese Beginners Course' vol 3
* Chinese vocab transfer from recent mag(s) and 'Imitate' book
* Finally finish 'Teach Yourself German'
= finishing with 6 books

Creative
* Finish violet thread painting
* Work on 'Paradise Island cross stitch - finish trees and sky areas
* Start winter design project - some artwork and charting the cross stitch design.
* Finish knitting pink scarf
* Knit cream cardy for Velimirovic baby
* Get yarns and patterns for my own knits
* Make kids' picture books out of magazine picture collection

Business
* Make good use of the 'business hour (10:30-11:30 most days) to develop ideas etc
* Complete match up of all social media stuff and on-line digital declutter
* Post at least once daily on 'business' Instagram account

30 items this time.  Let's see if I can complete 20 and have the other 10 in progress at least.  ☺

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2017

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Goals Round-up for January

So, how did I do?

Completed:  12/29
In progress:  9/17

Not terribly inspiring, but could have been worse.  A  lot worse, really!
Here's how it breaks down:

Digital
* Overhaul Sew in Love blog - new colour scheme etc and a new header and 'logo' photo/banners  Done! 
* Ditto this blog, complete with name change across all linked social media  Done!
* Blog all recent textile projects for scheduled posting  Done!
* Remove all the junk code from the 'By Age 50' page  Done!  Plus re-worked the page and made it more appropriate.

Whole section completed! ☻♥☻ Victory on this one section, at least. ☺

Domestic
* Take care of neglected recycling - boxes at mum's and water filter cartridges - end month with no extra recycling on hand
* Clean the oven

Looks like this section will be going forward to the next list....

Physical
* Renew medical card  Done!
* Go to GP re feet referral etc  Done!  First appointment 1 Feb
* Finish organising the Go bag  Documents all scanned (and put in 2 cloud storage 'places')
* Morning exercises on 25 days  12/25 
* Evening exercises on 25 days  0/25
* Go to bed at 9pm on at least 20 days  14/20
* Wear eye-shadow on at least 15 days  13/15 full eyes, plus some days as liner only, so basically done
* Don't buy any sweets. (This is a little bit of a cheat as I'll be eating some at mum's, but if I don't buy any for myself, it keeps it down a bit!!)  Failed miserably on 6th, 7th...   But haven't bought any since. =)

This section is a bit mixed.  I had to give up on the exercises most of the time as I was over-tired and they wouldn't have helped.  Most days I was in bed not too long after 9pm, so I did reasonably well on that, but it could be improved.  I also had a bad sweets craving early in the month, but once I'd figured out why and dealt with it, I was OK and didn't buy any more.  

I enjoyed getting back into wearing eye-shadow more and am trying to keep it up.  Finally learned how to use primer to good effect too.  I've loved make-up since I was about 13, so it's fun to use it more and my use-up for the year is on track so far. ☻

Reading and Study
* Study 'Imitate' book ch 12
* NRSV Bible to end of 2 Chronicles (from 1 Chron 6)  Done!
* Finish reading 'Color' (starting from ch10)  Done!
* Finish reading/working 'Language Change' (starting ch3)  Done!
* Finish final re-reading of 'Learn Any Language'  In progress
* Study Discovering Science book 3 to section 10 (from 4.2)
* Work corresponding sections of GCSE revision guides (and matching workbooks) as I meet the topics:
Physics p21, 22, 23, 24, 25a, 26, 27, 58, 59
Chemistry p41, 42, 43, 44, 46
(Because a lot of this is new and I'm finding it rather hard going...)
* Read through 'Modern Chinese Beginners Course' vols 1&2, (ch21-55)  21 - 43
* Start 'Modern Chinese Beginners Course' vol 3
* Chinese vocab transfer from pile of mags   Done!
* Finally finish 'Teach Yourself German'

Same situation as always here - I get a fair amount of reading done, but study/study reading is a different matter.  I've created a daily schedule to start next week which contains a study hour first thing, then an hour to work in business ideas etc, plus a reading hour last thing at night.  Hopefully, that should see making progress on my science and language book downscale.

Creative
* Finish violet thread painting  Leaf, bud and sepals finished 
* Work on 'Paradise Island cross stitch - finish trees and sky areas  Last section of land trees in progress
* Get pink skirt altered and make a piece of decorated textile with the off- cut to make book covers etc from.  Skirt done!  Thanks Janet, mwah! Offcuts pressed, folded and stored for later use.  Done as far as I decided to go just now.
* Start winter design project.

Not so much movement here as I would have hoped.  As I want to get my needlecrafts blog back up to scratch and the great stats I used to have and build up my Instagram stream that's linked to that blog, (as both will be good for the business I hope to start this year), I should be able to crack on with these soon.  

February list should be published tomorrow.  I have an initial surgical appointment this evening, so I should know more about what and when I can go stuff afterwards.

How was your month?

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2017

Monday, 23 January 2017

Finally joining in 'Pan That Palette'


This is something I thought I'd never do as I don't really have much in the way of palettes since my big clear out nearly 2 years ago, but then I realised that I'd rather not have any in future and so decided to pan not only the lippies (which are well in progress, as you can see) in these 3 multi-use palettes, but also the eyeshadows.  The blushers will probably get depotted to be used up later as it takes forever to make a dint in a blusher and I'm still plugging away at one I've been on with since January 2015 - and there was only half of it left then!


The last time I tried to use up an eyeshadow palette I got fed up within a week as it was all browns and that bores me, so this should be better.  I'm going to use other stuff too, but concentrate on this mostly.  I'll be glad to not have these around too much longer - esp. as there's a bit of a problem taking them out and about for retouches given the, erm, rather risqué cover designs!  Not really the sort of thing that fits in well with my social circle... ☺

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2017