Sunday, January 23, 2011

Deal to Myself

I've been cold-sheeping for over 3 months now, and my goal is at least one year. I'm 1/4 of the way, and it's gotten me thinking of how I should ease off the sheep when I do. I feel like if I'm given free reign, I'll go buckwild, once again. I've been reading a lot of cold sheeping forums on Ravelry, and it has gotten me thinking. Unfortunately, I feel most of the cold-sheeping forums end up being enabling instead. However, some people on some of the forums have been doing it for several years, and they are really inspirational.

I read somewhere on one of these forums that someone was paying themselves for every skein of yarn they knit. After they had knit so much, they allowed themselves to use the money they had saved on yarn. I've heard of that idea, but I never found a specification that I liked. Then, I started thinking about it: since I count my cold-sheeping by the yard, maybe I should pay myself by the yard. I started cold-sheeping because I was in a financial crunch (all of my savings essentially needed to be depleted in order to avoid a 22% interest rate. No I didn't charge that much to a credit card.) I think I'm starting to finally start building up my savings again (in very baby steps). So, saving a little to the side for knitting expenses would help me both with my cold-sheeping and my financial goals.

I've decided to save 1 cent for every yard I use up. My goal to reach 20,110 yards at the end of the year would mean I would save $201.10 at the end of the year. Whatever amount I have saved up, I am allowed to spend on knitting-related items (books, patterns, yarns, accessories). The only think I don't count is knitting needles--sometimes I genuinely lose a set of needles (or airport security takes them away from me.) 

Today, I knit 99 yards, and I promptly deposited $0.99 into my "Knitting" savings account at ING Direct. I actually put in money for all the yardage I have knit since I started cold-sheeping, as extra incentive. I love ING, because (1) it's really convenient; (2) 1.1% interest is not bad--not the best, but not bad; (3) it's really fast to make separate little savings accounts for all the goals I have; (4) it takes a few days for money to transfer from my checking to savings & vice versa, so I can't get instant gratification purchases. Ramit Sethi got me into automating my finances (and personal finance, in general), and these two blog posts helped.

Anyway, I feel like I should have a picture at the end of this rambling, so:

I made zucchini bread!(I used the Better Homes & Gardens version, which didn't include the lemon peel.) Last week, I tried banana bread, which was really successful. It tasted exactly like what it should taste like. This time, eh. The batter was really thick. I double-checked the recipe, and I included everyting it listed. I felt like it needed milk or something. Anyway, I forged ahead, and the resulting cake is eh. It smells like cooked vegetables, haha.

Here's the cake, wrapped, ready to cool overnight. I'm bringing it to the game day get-together tomorrow. I know I can't eat this by myself. The banana cake was a different story.


  1. I haven't heard it called cold sheeping before, (at first I thought it read cold sleeping and I thought you were sleeping in a cold house or with the windows open or something!) But I have tried to do the same thing with my stash for the last few months. I am trying to knit it down to a manageable size and not add to it! I do buy new yarn for projects I cannot resist, but only if I have a specific project and only if I am going to start on it right away. I just have to get control over my stash. I love your idea of a financial reward when knitting down those skeins.

  2. Haha-I try not to cold-sleep, but I did wake up freezing the other night when the temperature was in the negatives. Getting in control of the stash is definitely what my aim is this year. I love your knits, by the way! I avidly follow all of your finished projects--they're always so beautiful!