Tuesday, October 21, 2014

It All Went By So Fast

How is it possible that it is already getting close to November?! This summer (and Autumn?) has flown by but some how I managed to pack a whole lot into it. The camping, the traveling to and from Spokane, the farming, the school, Chicago, cooking, spending time with the family... And now I only have one weekend left of farming before we pack up for winter.

 Meaning that all of this...

And all of this... will be gone :(

The farm floods in the winter so we have to get everything off of the land and pronto. The rains have started and more and more cars are threatening to get stuck in the new mud. So this weekend we are taking down the tent and the hoop houses and saying our goodbyes. This may be a permanent goodbye as the land has changed owners and we don't know if the new land owner wants to lease from us. If they are able to stay, which I really wish they are, then it will still be goodbye for me. I am moving on in my life and finding new paths to take.

I currently have a possible job lined up that I am very excited about and if it goes through I will tell you all about it :)

The reason all of these thoughts came up was because I was thinking about the time I would have available to dedicate to this new job. I knew weekends would be booked while running the farm stand only to look at a calendar and realize that I only have one weekend left on the farm. It came as a bit of a shock.

But I am headed on to new things! Exciting things! The possibilities are endless and I can't wait to get started!

Monday, October 20, 2014

This May Not Be The End After All

These last few months I have been counting down the days until I am done with college (45 days). I have been so excited to finally be done! But sadly, that may no longer be the case.

I have been doing some bookkeeping for the farm this summer and have had a lot more fun doing it than I ever thought I would. So the thought came creeping into my mind of going into accounting. The more I thought about it, the better it sounded. A consistent job, good income, I can take on as many or as few clients as I'd like... and I think it would be a lot of fun for me. (I never thought I would say that about accounting before!)

When I looked into what it would take for me to sit for and pass the CPA exam, I realized that I am going to have to go back to school. But I had a strange reaction to that... I got excited. What?! Excited about school? The one thing I have been aching to get free from for over a year? How can that be?

Part of the reason I really dislike school right now is because every class I have taken has been lecture style and I am anything but an audio learner. I cannot for the life of me sit down for an hour or two and listen to someone talk, no matter how interesting the subject matter, without dosing off.

The other part of the reason is that, I like what I am learning, but I'm not passionate about it. I am interested in everything environmental, so my major environmental studies is great, but I am passionate about farming and homesteading and working with my hands, which is not what is covered. I constantly feel like I am putting my passions aside so that I can finish school and I'm tired of that! So in 45 days, I will be out of one school and trying to find my way into another.

I have already started looking for better schools for me. One that I can learn at my own pace, without having to sit quietly in large lectures for hours. One where I can learn hands on!

Any suggestions?

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Where the Name Came From

I get a lot of questions about my blog name "Elizabeth's Forrest" because 'Forrest' is spelled wrong and my name isn't Elizabeth. I've gotten a bit worn out telling everyone separately, so here is the simple explanation of where the name came from and why I like it so much.

A few years ago my mom started selling books on Amazon. My parents had way too many books and couldn't keep hauling them around every time they moved, which is surprisingly often. She used the seller name Jane's Vineyard because my sister's name is Jane and my parents used to have a vineyard and made wine for a few years. It was a family thing and sounded lovely.

I chose my blog name in order to have one that was similar because I like the idea of having a family theme. Forrest, with that particular spelling, is a family name so it seemed natural to use it in replacing vineyard. Multiple people in my family have it as a middle name, so to keep middle names a theme I used my own middle name, Elizabeth, to proceed Forrest.

So there you go.
Jane's Vineyard, family names, nature-y feel, Forrest, middle names, Elizabeth's Forrest.
Simple, lovely, and filled with family.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

School is Throwing Me Off

I'm now a few weeks into my last quarter at school and I am completely turned about. I can't concentrate on anything properly no matter what it is, school, blogging, job searching.

I have a really bad habit that is proving very hard to break, and that is any time I have school work to do, my brain shuts down into a big pile of mush that can't be motivated or disciplined into doing anything! I can't even procrastinate well anymore! It's a real problem.

What happens is that I sit down at my computer ready to do some work and somehow, with out me realizing it, I end up on imgur looking at picture after picture, and I don't even like it. It's not like I say, 'I think I'll spend some time avoiding doing homework by doing something that I like, such as imgur.' I just end up there and think to myself 'What am I doing?! I need to stop before I hate myself anymore.' but then I don't stop and I just feel gross.

It's like I can't procrastinate by doing something I like because then I might spend all day doing that so I get on imgur because I can tell myself I'll only be on for a few minutes, but then four hours go by and I've done nothing. Plus there's that sickening feeling of my brain turning to slush from staring at a glowing screen and not using my brain at all.

So that sucks... But I'm working really hard at not letting that get the best of me. Yesterday I woke up knowing that I had an assignment due and it was going to get done on time and be well written! So I woke up, took a nice shower, made a good breakfast and a cup of tea. I sat down at my computer and pulled up everything I needed and instead of stressing out and going back to the bad habits I then got up and walked around a bit.

When I was ready I sat back down and just read through the material. I worked 45 minutes on then 15 or so minutes off either knitting or walking or something where I wasn't at the computer. Any time I was about to get on imgur or facebook or whatnot, I just stood up and did something else for a bit. I made a delicious soup for lunch, cleaned all my vegetables from the farm, worked on my knitting project, anything that was moving around.

Then I sat back down and worked. And I really did a lot of work! I wasn't stressed, I got my assignment done early enough for me to read through and edit, and I may have even enjoyed myself.

So that is what I am going to try to do from now on, just relax, take it slow and for the love of god avoid imgur at all costs!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Knitting for EVERYONE!

Hello everyone! I have had a crazy and super fun week. I flew out to Chicago with my family to visit my cousin and attend her beautiful wedding! It was a ton of fun. Great food, great drinks, dancing, connecting with family, visiting the city of Chicago, and watching my cousin walk down the aisle at the Art Institute of Chicago… how could it not have been amazing?

I did, however, get caught up in all of the fun and not blog… oops.. I will get better with time. You know, learn time management and all that good stuff.

This time I want to share with you an awesome knitting project I just finished that I am really excited about! It’s a very simple and fast tunic tank top that looks great and can fit almost all sizes.

I love knitting projects where I see results fast. I have the tendency to get bored with projects where I feel like I am not getting anywhere, so this shirt is perfect because it uses large needles and before you know it you’re almost done!

I spent the plane ride back to Seattle knitting and when I realized I was ready to bind off we were a few minutes from the ground and I raced the plane to see if I could get it done before touching ground. (I won by 10 seconds!)

I just picked a yarn that I liked that was easy to work with and a nice color. No fancy yarns with the frills or changing in size or extra fuzz, just nice, soft, and straight forward.

Needles are size 15 US (10 mm) circle (long circle, enough to fit 96 stiches)

Cast on 48 stiches

It’s ribbed all the way down so knit one, purl one all the way to the end of the row and when you turn it around for the next row it’ll be knit, purl again (knitting the knits and purling the purls).

The pattern I used had me work 26 rows, but I think that leaves pretty big arm holes so for my next one (oh, yes I will be making more in different colors!) I will try 20 instead.

When you finish that, put a scrap piece of yarn through the holes to keep the stiches live.

That is the top half of the front. To start the top half of the back, go to the cast on edge and pick up the first twelve stiches. Then cast on 24 stiches, and pick up the last 12 stiches.

I originally made the mistake of picking up the last 12 stiches in the wrong direction so there was a little twist in the shoulder so I undid the work and started again, but now that I think of it… that might have been a cool design.

Anyway, now you’re going to do the exact same thing on the back side as you did on the front side, knit and purl each row down to 26 rows so that it continues in the ribbed pattern.

Once you have 26 rows on either side, pick up the live rows from the front side and work in a circle knitting and purling the same pattern as the top half onto the bottom half.

I just kept going until it was as long as I wanted it then binded off.

The real mistake that I made that I will make sure not to do again is that I did a regular bind off (I’m assuming it’s the regular one because it was the first one I learned and what I use for nearly everything). That bind off is not stretchy so the bottom of my shirt is stiff while the rest is really stretchy. There are a lot of different bind off options to choose from that are stretchy, so if you try something and it works, let me know! I’d love to hear what works. I will be experimenting with my next one.

Let me know how it goes!

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