Sunday, May 18, 2008

Slow weekend

It has been a pretty darn good weekend. A friend and I went to Lawrence, Kansas for a little road trip and some shopping. I spent more than I had budgeted, but I did get some things that are going to make my life easier and provide some entertainment. I bought a set of Ashford hand carders for $55 --more than I had planned to spend for the day, but I really needed a set. I have been searching for a used set, but that hasn't happened. I have been waiting quite a while. So when I went to the Yarn Barn, I bit the bullet and bought a pair. Now I can comb out and reuse the little bits of wool that get matted or I've pulled while spinning. If I get a lump in a skein, I stop and pull that inch. With hand carders I can comb it out and reuse it. I did pick up a pound of merino superwash, which was an impulse buy, but I will have an excellent time spinning and dyeing this, and it is something that will keep me occupied at home and produce something usable. Eventually I want to sell my handspun and handyed. I have a lot more learning to do in that arena. I will however start making stitch markers this week to sell at Twist. I want to use non tarnish base metals instead of sterling. Sterling sounds good, but it does tarnish and it does drive the cost up of the final product. I personally like using crystals, so that is where I chose to put my extra cost.

I did find a really good budgeting magazine on the newsstand this weekend. I bought it because it has a really good worksheet that I intend to transfer to Excel. I've been looking for one, but this one is the first one I've seen that is pretty complete. The booklet also has excellent tips for saving cash in a lot of different ways.

My goal this week is to use what we have in the freezer and only grocery shop for things we really are out of. I can probably make it through most of this week without having to grocery shop, with the exception of buying a cake for the boys 8th grade graduation on Tuesday. Funny, they didn't have "graduation" in the 8th grade when my oldest was in school. Someone said having these little graduations is supposed to encourage students to stay in school and graduate from high school. Hmmm. Do you think this works?

Spending Friday: Gas for car: $30 Dinner out with friend: $22 Artful Blogging magazine: $15 . I must say I do get am immense amout of inspiration from this magazine, so I consider it a necessity. It feeds the creative muse. Spending for the day: $67

Spending yesterday: $40 gas for trip, $85 handcarders and roving, $16 used books, $12 lunch in Lawrence, $7 pop, coffee and snacks on road Total: $160.00

You know, by themselves they looked little. When I added them up in one lump sum, I went CRAP!! That seems to be my favorite phrase this year. No more spending this week on anything other than necessities.

With gas prices being what they are, I have already cut back on using our car and shopping. I wish Wichita was more bike friendly. There are no bike lanes. Even if they had lanes for mopeds, that would be an improvement. I think we Americans are such a car nation that we don't even look for alternatives. Look at the Netherlands. Biking is a normal sight. And it seems to me they are also more physically fit than Americans on the average. I would love to eventually be able to convert some, if not most of our house to solar power. The budget restricts that right now, but I am exploring for the future.

Goal for the upcoming week:

Monday: Have boys help put futon in family room. Unearth the desk and hutch for downstairs. Find a table to put TV on so marble one can be moved upstairs.

Wednesday: Look for a work desk for the guest bedroom to replace the cheap one already there that is falling apart.

Thursday: Get guest bedroom cleaned and things packed . Prepare walls for painting.

Friday: Enlist boys into helping me paint the guest bedroom walls.

Start shopping for an area rug for downstairs.

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