I am on the strangest non-fiction kick lately… No real idea why, maybe it’s because I’m back in school and looking to learn lots of new things, but I’m reading TWO non-fiction titles at the same time AND sharing them both with you on this Two Book Tuesday!
Who am I and what have I done with myself?
Thanks to my bookselling sister, I got my hands on a copy of The Parasitic Mind by Gad Saad.
A recurring argument between my brother and I revolves around the question “what the heck happened to common sense?” with me asking “why aren’t people questioning this?” and him basically saying “it’s easier for people to let someone else think for them.”
Which lead me to The Parasitic Mind. I’ve only just begun, but the writing is excellent and well-planned, explaining how bad ideas spread through the masses in a way that is interesting, rather than eye-rollingly boring.
So far, Girl, Wash Your Face is more a biography than inspirational title, though author Rachel Hollis does have some really great nuggets of advice like the following…
“You become who you surround yourself with. You become what you consume. If you find yourself in a slump, or feel as though you’re living in a negative space, take a good, hard look at who or what you see every day.”
Each chapter shares a story from her life and, at the end, wraps everything up into a handful of simple steps for the reader to follow.
At the end of the day, Rachel’s message is that women need to put themselves at the TOP of their priority list. If you aren’t taking care of yourself, how can you take care of anyone or anything else?
What’s the last inspirational book you read? Did anything specific stay with you afterwards?
I’ve got to be entirely honest, here, and say that I had NO idea what my freebie was going to be! I considered books with orange covers, horror titles, books with pumpkins, or titles that started with O or H (for October or Halloween), but nothing really fell into place.
Lol, apparently I own very few orange books and even fewer that you could consider horror!
So, instead, I went through my “To Read” list and found ten nonfiction books that I want to read or think people should consider reading…
Gifted Hands by Ben Carson. While I have no interest in joining the medical field myself, I enjoy reading biographies of those in said field. This was such a good read and one of the more inspirational auto-biographies I’ve read.
12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos by Jordan Peterson. Have not been able to get my hands on a copy of this book, but if it is as well-thought out and articulated as his speeches or debates, it is sure to satisfy. The first time I saw Jordan Peterson on YouTube, I was absolutely shocked. Never before had I seen someone so calm and capable of putting thoughts into spoken words. While I don’t always agree with his positions, I am more than willing to allow his voice at the table (as it were).
The Power of the Positive Woman by Phyllis Schlafly. Suggested to me by a friend. I had never before heard of Phyllis Schlafly, but it appears that she was one of the conservative voices against feminism. As I enjoy learning about differing points of view from all walks of life, this should be an interesting read indeed (look I rhymed!).
A few days ago, I was eating a bag of chips and came across one that was super green and, of course, had to throw it away. Now, why I would waste a perfectly good potato chip is exactly why I’m writing this post… to explain something I learned, found interesting, and thought might be fun to share with you all! 🙂
If you spend any amount of time preparing food to be cooked (or have eaten a bag of chips), then you’ve probably seen the infamous green potato I speak of. While the entire potato isn’t green, when you cut into one it’s easy enough to locate any suspiciously green spots.
In other produce, these green spots might indicate that it is under ripe, but for potatoes this is not the case.
When I was little, we would just cut this part of the potato out and continue preparing them per whatever recipe we were following.
Which, honestly, isn’t such a bad thing because the amount of green potatoes you would have to eat in order to suffer any ill effects is pretty large, at 4.5 lbs for one adult. That’s a lot of mashed potatoes!
So, what exactly makes the green so bad? The green in or on a potato indicates that it’s been exposed to sunlight which has activated it’s defense mechanism of producing the toxin solanine. When ingested in large enough amounts, solanine can cause all kinds of horrible effects in the body from vomiting, diarrhea, and headaches to paralysis of the central nervous system.
Rather than rattle on about various facts, more information about this dangerous toxin can be found HERE.
At the end of the day, it seems that while you’d probably be okay eating some green potatoes why risk it? I’m going to follow my doctor’s advice and just keep throwing green potatoes out (they don’t often get to the point of greening in our house anyways, lol).
And definitely do NOT feed them to children!
One other interesting tidbit about the potato plant is that it’s part of the infamous nightshade family, which also includes eggplants and tomatoes! Lol, why are so many yummy foods potentially dangerous?
And there you have it, lesson learned.
Did you know that potatoes could make a nerve agent?
Probably one of the best pieces of music in the entire trilogy of games, Suicide Mission gets your heart pumping from the get go!
This is one of the most stressful parts of the entire trilogy, as you’re racing the clock in order to keep your crew alive against overwhelming odds in the Collector Base. I love this song to absolute pieces, because it brings me right back to the game each time I hear it.
The skills needed to do crochet have long eluded me. I can make a simple square or perhaps scarf (if I really tried), but my tension is so TIGHT that after awhile I can no longer even get my hook through the stitches to continue working on the project.
Me + Crochet = Strangulation!
Honestly, my inability to figure out tension while crocheting is probably the reason that I gave up the hooks and went with needles instead. Of course, this also gave me the opportunity to really dig into knitting as a craft… I went from barely being able to hold my needles to knitting up wearable pieces, baby blankets and Baby Yoda!
Why did I pick up the hook again?
Well, my sister (enabler that she is) gifted me with two craft magazines (one for knitting and the other for crochet) which included kind of a beginner’s project complete with yarn and little, plastic hook. I struggled for way to long trying to follow the pattern using the included hook and yarn before deciding that perhaps better quality materials were called for.
Purchasing better yarn DID indeed help and I used the size E 3.5mm Boye hook I had from previous crochet attempts.
However, no matter how closely I followed the pattern or how many tutorials I watched, what I was creating looked NOTHING like the picture!
…turns out that the US has different terms for crochet techniques than, say, the UK and the double crochet I was trying to make was actually a triple crochet!
Once I figured that snafu out, things seemed to progress pretty quickly. My stitches were super uniform and I was able to crochet the head in no time at all! It’s also nice that this yarn is so soft, because it meant I was looked forward to working with it. 🙂
As the project continued, I was having a surprising amount of discomfort, from bruised fingers to stiff/sore joints, so I made the decision to splurge a little and upgrade my crochet hook from a regular Boye one to an ergonomic Clover one from the Amour line… and it is amazing! Truly, from the first stitch, I was hooked! …unintentional pun, lol.
I finished little Miss Kitty here soon thereafter, working on her skirt, limbs, and accessories while watching YouTube or winding down before bed and before I knew it, she was ready for her photo shoot!
Many thanks to my sister, who was kind enough to take pictures for me, since mine always seem to be super boring and she seems to have an eye for these things, lol.
As I don’t really have a need for handmade, stuffed animals, I will be giving Miss Kitty a new home where she will (hopefully) live a long, happy life.
Of note, I live streamed my attempts to learn crochet while working on this ballet cat and one of my viewers asked if I took commissions! I’d never taken a commission before, but they were very kind, explaining that a family of three cats would make a wonderful Christmas present for their children.
Before I agreed to take the commission, I thought long and hard about the request… did I want to make money from a hobby? Or did I want to keep things chill? Ultimately, I did agree to take the commission, mostly because I think it’s a sweet idea to have matching gifts for siblings and because I would have loved getting something that someone made just for me! In fact, I have received handmade gifts and they are some of my most cherished.
Believe it or not, at the time of writing this blog post, I have the one commission for three cats (2 ballet girl cats and 1 boy cat) as well as another commission from a good friend for an elephant and an owl!
Time will only tell, but making stuffed animals might just be my niche in the crochet world, lol.