Friday, February 13, 2015

Year 16, Week 04, Day One (week 749)

Year 16, Week 04, Day One (week 749)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
02-07-15 Saturday
    64 degrees early morning, 75 degrees late afternoon, a strong breeze with guest strong enough to knock wide brim hats off.     Patchy clouds, maybe 50% blue sky, some sun but mostly cloudy because of the angle of the sun versus clouds in the early day. There was some nice sun in the afternoon for a while. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.
    After Breakfast, we went to a small Walmart store. I guess it would be a medium sized one, actually. It is just that it has parking for a place half the size needed. Parking near the building because we were early and lucky, we took carts with us into the store. We split up fairly quickly. I walked about a quarter of the food isles looking for key items I was after. I then went to the kitchenware section and got some ideas.
    I then went directly to the craft section. That was dangerous to say the least. The yarn was yelling for me to take them home. They looked so pretty in the display, I convinced them to stay there to delight people’s eyes. I looked at a large number of possible crafts and hobbies they have there (this is a small section compared to some of their stores), and considered ones I had been involved in previously and should get back into, and ones that would fun to dabble in. It was an effort to leave without anything
    For a while now, I had noticed some discomfort near the base of my leg on the inside. While walking away from the craft section, I realized I was compensating for my brace with how I walk. The inside of the brace interferes with my other leg so I sort of swing my leg out a little with each step. I tried adjusting how I walk, which was easy to do while hanging onto the cart, and found the discomfort reduced. It was not as easy to walk that corrected way and would be  even harder to make it a habit.
    I went to the Pharmacy section where I expected to find mom and she was elsewhere. They had a bin of mesh scrubber balls and they were in all sorts of bright colors. While talking to a woman customer there, I mentioned about how they look so pretty mixed up in that bin, but not as pretty when you get them home. She agreed with me.
    The Valentine’s day section was extremely dangerous for me. They had teddy bears and other stuffed animals galore. Some as small as your spread hand, others big enough to hug with both your whole arms. They were all asking me to take them home. I was lucky as store teddy bears know they will go home with someone eventually. I did rub the bellies of several teddy bears. They love that.
    Mom and I met near the cash registers and we cashed out and got back to her car. I knew I had a very good walk. It was wonderful to walk around, looking at what was around me rather than watching my feet which is what I normally do outside. Have to be aware of what can trip me up. Those shopping carts make all the difference in the world. They are easier to walk with than a cane.
    We visited several yard sales. Mom thinks that the storms last night scared some yard sales away. One yard sale was of the tools of a man that passed away recently. He had a lawn mower repair and sales store and his tools were on sale. I should have looked into his wrenches and stuff, but I could not remember what sizes I really needed.
    I did get a little Mortar and pestle for grinding things grains or seasonings, and a travel iron. I don’t think this was ever used.
    One technique for transferring a pattern onto a piece of wood is to photocopy (not print) your picture, lay it face down on the wood, and then run an iron over the paper. Photocopiers use a plastic based ink with a metal in it along with the pigment. When you make a photocopy, a charge is added to the drum based on the picture. The ink powder is given a charge and is attracted the opposite charge on the drum. Then is laid down on the paper, which goes through a heated roller to fuse the ink to the paper.
    When you lay the paper down and run the iron over it, it re-melts the ink and transfers a little bit of it onto the wood so you can get a slight image of what it was.
    I picked up a cast iron fry pan at a yard sale place that is almost a store. They have a bunch of collectibles.  I learned years ago that when we get into collecting, we are actually storing the collectibles for the real collectors, the ones with the real money. Millions of something might be sold, but by the time they are really worth anything, there are only a few thousand. The rest was damaged in some way or another. Until that time, our job as collectors is to store them as well as we can.  She happened to have a cast iron fry pan and the price she gave me was simply get rid of it. She said she wanted to sell some stuff to make room for some new stuff.  What made it tough, was that she had a lot of the little TY Beany Baby teddy bears. They are sometimes looked on as collectibles. Unlike store teddy bears, yard sale teddy bears are not absolutely sure they will go home with anybody and they were very loud and persistent to get me to take them home. I was able to let them stay there where they were safe, for now.
    At another yard sale, there was some good quality cameras at fire-sale prices.  My brother used to use Topcon brand cameras. Over the decades they took a beating. The heat here is not good for lenses. Fungus eats into the coatings diffusing the image eventually. He got hold of a Nikon camera and then a few extra lenses and had messed with that for a while, and then got a Nikon digital camera. All Nikon cameras can use most all the lenses they have ever made. I decided to play mind tricks on my brother by buying a Nikon camera body and lens as almost a gag gift. It is a gag gift as film is harder to get, and is expensive to process. Digital all you need is access to some computer and you can shoot thousands a shots without any problems at all. At the moment, the camera does not have a battery in it, but gives you one shutter speed and “bulb” so it is usable.  At the price, I figured it was worth the gag.
    We stopped at home for a short break, and then we went to the DOLLAR TREE store.  This is a real dollar store and has high quality products. Some dollar stores have pure junk. Some of the things they have are name brand.  These stores are small. Having had a good rest after Walmart  because of the time we drove between yard sales, I walked all the isles, examining everything. I am always impressed at the numbers of arts and crafts they have supplies for. Of course they have loads of decorations based on the upcoming holidays. Valentine’s day and Saint Patrick’s Day were on display. I am sorry, but I have far too much chocolate in my fridge already. I don’t need any more, as tempting as it is.  I did get some ideas for some futures project to work on.
    I was done long before my mom and dad were, so I sat outside in the warmed air on a bench they had out side and people-watched. I learned long ago that there are no ugly people. Long before you get to ugly, you run into character. It is something you notice when you learn to draw or paint people or you take the time to really look at people. Also, the way they carry themselves as they walk, and how they dress is fun to watch. Some people are in no hurry, others are deliberate on how they move. Some move painfully. Some wear sharply pressed clothing, others are slouchy, or simply comfortable. Some colors and patterns are nice to look at. I don’t really get a lot of opportunity to really people watch. I tend to be in a hurry to get to where I am going, or watching my feet to keep from tripping (a habit even on good ground or floors). 
    We had a choice of going home to and cook something or eating out. All I can say was that I over-ate at the Chinese buffet. We all did. When we got home, we all laid down and napped. We all deserved it. I knew I had done gotten a good amount of exercise for the day and needed to recover for a while.
    I did go outside to pet the kitty cat, and give a glance over of mom’s garden (one of her Orchids was in bloom) but it was too late in the day to really do anything.
    I have other plans for tomorrow so I won’t be doing any wood working tomorrow.
    I will see how the day goes.
Year 16, Week 04, Day Two (week 749)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
02-08-15 Sunday
    I did well this morning with only about four hours sleep. I met with some friends for coffee. When we finally left, I went directly home.
    I gathered my clothes and went to do laundry. I finished one of my “handle gloves” which slips over the handles of my cast iron fry pans. I finally started on a teddy bear based on a pattern sent to me by a friend. It is made all at once, both sides attached at the arms, and then folded in half and stitched together. I’ve wanted to start this for several weeks but was not in a position to get to it. I have almost half of one side done while waiting for laundry. It is really easy to do and I was surprised at how small this bear will be. With the hook and stitch I am working with, it will be only 6 or 7 inches tall. If I used a heavier yarn, I could, without any changes, make it much bigger. Of course, doubling the size would not be too tough by doubling the number of stitches in each row, and doubling the rows. I fully intend to make several this size before I give thought of doing any other changes. This one would be much better if I was using one of the really soft yarns, like the yarns designed for babies. I don’t have any of that yarn with me and never gave softness a consideration when picking the yarn. This tan yarn was the color I liked best for my first one..
    Once I got home, I decided to take care of some small work and projects that needed to be done while I have the opportunity, along with some napping to make up for last night.
    I do hope to do some wood working next weekend.
    I will have to see what next week will bring.


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