Every day should be Earth Day

Never mind that Earth Day was yesterday, but it really should be every day. We only have one Earth after all. Over here at Chez Mistress Stash Enhancer we are making small changes, but we all know how quickly small changes add up!

  • I switched to Seventh Generation’s dish detergent and laundry soap. I’ve also started using vinegar when I wash my towels. (Now that I know you put it in the fabric softener compartment of the washing machine. I’m a bit slow sometimes!) I’ve been using Clorox greenworks multi-purpose spray, no other cleaner has made my stove sparkle. Once its all used up I’m planning on making my own cleaners from this site. If you guys have any good recipes for safe green cleaners let me know please!
  • I’m in the process of making about 50 fabric napkins for my family to use instead of paper.

Picture 1156
I can’t tell you how much they have cheered up the table! And my father pointed out that the napkins also make nice hats, bandanna’s and blindfolds. All during dinner. (I’m looking forward to picking out his retirement home. mahahhahah!!) I have a few more to make…now that I’ve realized I’m going to have to make around 80 to last us a week. Crappers!

  • I’ve started brining my ownbags to the grocery store

Picture 1154
I was thinking of making my own, but seriously that would take a few weeks before that would happen! So I bought a few more during my last visit to the grocery.

  • We’ve been recycling for the past year… or has it been two years? Anyway two weeks ago I let the kids out of the van while I sorting the recyclables into the bins. They love it, and call it the “Recycling game”.

Recycling with children
After they ran into each other, and me, a few times too many I had them line up. After they take a turn they move to the back. In our town you have to bring your recycling to the recycling center and sort it yourself. Its not very well advertised that our town even has this center I didn’t know about it until after I had been living here for 3 years!! . I can’t tell you how much of a shock it was when I moved to Pennsylvania after living in Massachusetts. In Massachusetts everyone recycles. Okay, maybe not *everyone* but mostly.

  • I bring our used dead batteries into our local Walmart’s photo center for recycling. Walmart also excepts old glasses for the Lion’s club. (I know Walmart isn’t perfect and I’m in no way defending the big box store. But they have been making “green” choices for a number of years. The boxes they use for softlines are reused a number of times before recycling. Also all the cardboard is recycled. Those are just 2 of the things I picked up on when I worked there 6 years ago.)
  • Slowly I’m switching the lightbulbs in the house over to the energy smart lightbulbs. Which did you know there are special ones for lights on a dimmer switch?
  • I’m trying to drive less into “town” (where all the big stores are, its 22miles roundtrip). But every time I say I’m trying to drive into town 1 or 2 a week one of the kids ends up sick and I’m driving into town 3 or 4 times that week! I also carpool with families who are on my kids ball teams. We take turns taking each other’s kids to practice.
  • Unplugging electronics that aren’t being used. This is especially hard for me, but I’m getting better! It still boggles my mind that the electronics are pulling power when they are off. I’m hoping to get some of these smart strips in the near future for the 2 tv’s, dvrs and Mike’s “Kingdom”.

Mike is going to be thrilled when he comes home, I want to change the shower head over to a water saving one, change the screen thingies on the facets over to ones that add more air into the water (like that made sense right?!) and I would really like to start a compost bin. I have to research more into the composting. I’m not all sure what all you add to it, and where I should put it on our property. Our property is mostly woods, with one side on the town’s line. Personally I don’t want critters to close to the house. (Ahem, Dad. Like the bear.)

Since every day should be Earth Day, what are you doing that’s green?

Meme: 7 random things

A loooong time ago Meg over at Knittens tagged me for a meme. Its been on the back of my mind since she tagged me back in February. (Wow.) I’m going to throw in some pictures to spice this post up. So here we go,
Here is what I have to do….List 7 Random Facts about Me
Here are the rules (and they must be posted to your blog).
Link to the person’s blog who tagged you (see above). List seven random and/or weird facts about yourself. Tag seven random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs. Let each person know that they have been tagged by posting a comment on their blog and also so they can look at your blog and not tag the same people all over again!
big smiles from the girl in the big girl car seat
1. Every time I attempt to make bread using my bread machine it turns into what Bryce affectionately calls a bread rock. I think the yeast doesn’t have enough time to activate…

2. When I watch the Food network I want to scream “pull up your sleeves!” to the chef’s. It bothers me immensely when they are wearing long sleeve shirts and are handling meat. I don’t know why this bothers me so much its not like germs can jump!
mmmm, apples

3. I can’t seem to forget certain things. Like when Meg tagged me for this meme. I’ve been thinking about it since then! If someone asks me to do something I can’t forget it. But I loose my cell phone a lot and have to call it to find it.

4. Even though I’m done having kids. (Quit laughing, I can hear you!) I still have all their baby clothes in the attic. Ok, ok, not all, but most. Enough to fill a rubbermade tote for each size. Recently a friend of mine had a baby girl and needed clothes. I went through all the girls old clothes. It was incredibly had to part with most of it. Just call me sentimental.
Spring is almost hear!
5. We used to use paper napkins, and I have been on the hunt for some nice fabric ones for a while now. After getting fed up I decided to make my own. I think I’ll need to make around 50 to last my family a week of meals. I’ve made 24 so far.

6. There are 18 steps on our front steps and 14 on the back steps. I go up and down them at least 12 times a day. Mostly because I discover I forgot something and have to go back to get it!
the cabinet
7. You guys are going to laugh over this one! Sometimes when I’m reading a really good book and I can’t put it down I will read in the shower.

Even though I enjoy reading other people’s responses to meme’s, and I like doing them myself I can never bring myself to tag anyone with out feeling very guilty. Soo… to distract ya’ll from that here is a video of Kaily signing “more”

My parents are coming in sometime today, and I have to get the minnions off to school. Happy Friday all!

It was a hat thing…

For some unknown reason (really, do I ever have a reason?) in the begining of March I decided I need a hat, so I cast on for the Cabled Rangoli hat using 1.5 hanks of Noro Cash Iroha in color 24 (from the stash)
Rangoli
(Doesn’t Corra look sweet in my hat?) I used US 6 (4.00mm) needles. I knit 15 rows of ribbing and omitted the bobbles.
back of Rangoli
I need to put some elastic in the ribbing since its a bit loose. But I love this hat! Finished it in 3 days. Once I was finished with that I thought, I need another hat don’t I? And casted on for the Banana Republic Knockoff hat.
sort of the banana republic knockoff hat.
Its almost a knockoff… I casted on (Updated 4/12: I found my notes, and its a good thing I did! Parts of this paragraph have changed.) 110sts 78sts. BO 12 sts for the button flap, leaving 66sts. I had 11sts between 6 markers and I’m pretty sure I knit a few more rows before starting the decreases since I was using a worsted weight instead of bulky. Speaking of the decreases I decreased every other row until 6 sts remained in between the markers then decreased every row until 6 sts remained. The yarn is handspun and was a Christmas gift from my friend down the street Amanda Jayne. She has a etsy shop too, maybe if we nag ask enough she’ll update her blog ; ). This yarn has to be the squishest yarn I’ve ever knit with and I love how it striped up.
sort of the banana republic knockoff hat.
but that wasn’t the end of the hat thing, I needed one more hat so the other’s wouldn’t be lonely. And casted on for the Better bucket hat (PDF) I used Manos del Uruguay mulled wine ( 118 ) colorway (from the stash)
Bucket
I used US7 and started the decreases a few rows early. Its a little loose, but I’m thinking of lining it with some fleece so its extremely snuggly.
Top o' the bucket
The top o’ the bucket, because its nice to know what the top looks like. Now that the hat thing is over, I seem to be bitten by the sewing bug… more on that later. Bryce caught a ball with his face (Coach’s words not my own) tonight during ball practice. Poor kid has a fat lip and his wiggly tooth is a bit more wiggly. I told Bryce that he might want to use his mitt next time, that’s why I got him one. I don’t think he got the joke. If you all could, please keep Mike’s 6 year old niece in your thoughts and prayers she fell at school and broke her elbow. She needed surgery to pin her elbow together. She has a full arm cast and has to keep it elevated all the time. Poor thing is bored out of her mind but will hopefully recover most of the range of motion in her arm. Must rush, little guy needs more ice.

Splish, Splash the mittens are takin a bath!

Splish splash, the mittens where taking a bath
Long about a Saturday morn

Splish, Splash mittens are takin a bath!

A rub dub, just relaxing in the tub
Thinking everything was alright!!!

Sorry! I couldn’t help myself with the cheesiness of the song reference… at least I refrained from embedding a song to this post! (Those drive me insane!!) I finished the thumb on my second fiddlehead this morning, and started them blocking. I can’t wait for them to dry so I can start the linning. I’ve been thinking of all the choices I have in my stash and am thinking of using this yarn
Posh yarn Coquet
over the kidsilk haze I have. I think the mohair will get stuck to my fingers and while I have been working on these mittens for 2 weeks now my hands kinda tingle from the mohair in the one yarn. Anywhoo… Check out the multitude of sins a good blocking will hide
blocked and unblocked
you might have to click on the photo to go to a larger picture. Its amazing, the mitten I blocked falls right off my hand and the unblocked one is pretty snug.

I want to thank all of you guys again for your thoughts and prayers. I got a phone call from my Dr’s office yesterday. The pharmacist at the hospital was going through the ER records and saw that no one told me to stop taking the cipro. And the pharmacist knew that the numbness is a side effect of the cipro. I’m so glad I listened to my gut and didn’t take anymore! But I can’t believe the nurse told me to finish it when I asked her if I should. (I just wanted to hear what she would say when I asked.) and the Dr never told me that he suspected that it might be the antibiotic (I know he did because he told a Dr that is friends with my Dad.) I had an MRI on Friday, I told the receptionist what had happened and that I was in the ER. She was a sweetie and put me in one of the appointment slots they have to keep open for inpatients. Which is a good thing, if I hadn’t have told her my appointment would be on Thursday the 11! Hopefully my Dr’s office will have those results on Monday. All the weird numbness was completely gone by Friday afternoon. I can’t wait till I get my survey in the mail for my ER visit. I have a book to right. And I can’t wait to get the survey for my MRI I have a slew of complements for those girls, they where wonderful! I’m so glad it was just a reaction to the antibiotic, but I better not get sick again anytime soon! Sheesh! Thanks again to all of you guys, ((hugs)) I can’t tell you how wonderful ya’ll are.

ER Frequent Flyer

*sigh* So today while I’m eating my lunch and making Allysa’s the tip of my middle finger goes numb. Then my pointer finger goes numb, then my thumb is numb. Odd huh? Wait. It gets odder. Then the right side of my forehead goes numb. Oh. crap I think. Am I having a stroke or an allergic reaction to my antibiotic? (I have a weird rare blood disorder called essential thrombocytosis. My body makes lots of extra platelets. So I have a higher chance of having a blood clot.) So I look up symptoms of a stroke on webmd, and call my Dr. While on hold, my right leg goes numb in patches. Then I look up side effects of my antibiotic. Dr. says go to the ER. and don’t drive myself there (umm.. no duh??) Long story shorter, A&K go to babysitter and I call the school to have C&B re-routed to the babysitter. And I got an ambulance ride and another pretty bracelet. Yay.
ER Frequent Flyer
After 6 more hours I will never get back a bit in the ER , some migraine meds (that didn’t work), a EKG, lots of blood work, a cat scan, some other tests and a wee bit of knitting (this is the 2nd mitten. Just a few more decrease rows and a thumb!!)
almost fiddlehead
they sent me home. They have no idea what caused the numbness, and I have to have an MRI done. Personally I think it was my antibiotic the numbness didn’t start to fade until it was almost time for my next dose. Its a rare side effect, but I’m that special kind of special. Now the only numbing that is left is a little bit by my right eyebrow. *sigh* I’m not finishing my antibiotic. And I’m going to be just fine. They might as well name a wing after me, or at least a room…

April Fools!

scene: The breakfast table this morning
April Fools Allysa!
Allysa: “My cereal is hard! the spoon won’t go in!”
*Mommy snickering*
April Fools Bryce!
Bryce: “No matter how many times I try… the milk is still hard!”
*Mommy snickering*
April Fools Corra!
Corra: Mine’s hard too! Hey! The Milk is frozen!
Mommy laughing: April Fools! I froze the milk in the cereal last night. *laughing*
Corra: “Wait that’s not till April 13!”
Mommy shaking her head: “Corra, its today!”*laughing*
Having kids is so much fun! Hope everyone has a Happy April Fools day! I’m feeling much, much better now. Thank you everyone for your well wishes. You such a good bunch! ((hugs))