Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The details

Last night I finished the first in the pair of socks that I'm working on.  I decided to make it a cuff sock because that's the kind I prefer to wear.  I don't know what I did exactly but the bind-off is a tad tight.  It doesn't bother me once I get it on, but it's a shimmy to get over the arch and heel of my foot.  Feet are such weird things.

Then I started immediately on the second sock.  I've been reading a lot of knitting blogs lately and apparently there is a condition out there where people never get around to knitting the second sock.  I find that shocking, really.  What's one sock without its mate?  Lost and lonely and forever sitting there without a purpose.  Just not a good thing.

So, I started the second sock, and I was apparently tired.  Because I tried Judy's Magic Cast-On, which I did with the previous sock and then came to work and showed it to a collegue.  (watch the video, it's really quite entertaining even if you don't knit and if you do, wow!  What a great provisional cast-on!), and I couldn't make it work.  I tried again, to no avail.  Tried once more and got the cast on but couldn't figure out how to knit from it.  It was crazy.  I had to watch the video again and darn it if I didn't miss one tiny little detail step.  The tiny little detail that meant that my stitches would just fall off the needle and not knit.  Knitting is funny that way.

While I don't agonize about the tiny details the way a lot of people do, I do like for things to be done right and I do think that paying attention to the details makes a very big difference.  I try not to get annoyed when people don't pay attention to the details that I pay attention to, but sometimes I can't help myself.  And I know that I annoy people because I let some things slip away that they care about.

When crafting or doing art, however, it's the details that make the difference between something that gets finished and something that people really enjoy or connect with. With my craft and art I try very hard to pay attention to the details, but apparently I've been letting things slip lately. 

For instance, on the bee quilt, Alyssa and I were making the same mistake over and over.  We didn't do it the last time we worked on it.  So, next time we work on it we have to go back to the pattern and pay attention.  there's clearly a step we thought we remembered but didn't.  Also, on my secret project I made a crucial calculation error that is going to require a couple more hours of work than necessary.  That's frustrating and easily fixed by paying attention.

But, apparently details aren't my thing right now.  I need easy, no-brainer crafting to work on right now.

Today's picture is of the lovely little sock on my foot.  The detail of the "arch expansion" creating a wedge is awesome and my favorite thing about this sock next to how intuitive it was to turn the heel.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Am I even ME anymore?

Last night I knitted away for several hours while watching TV with David.  We've really gotten into a show called Downton Abbey (I highly recommend it).  When we had watched the final episode and talked a good bit, David wanted to do some reading for a few minutes before tucking into bed.  He said, "do you want to read?"  And I said (kind of defensively if the truth be told), "Nope, I want to knit."  And David said, "Why not?"  And I replied, "Because I apparently don't like to do anything that I used to."

I'm worried.

Very worried.

I'm not me anymore.  I LOVE to read, but I haven't opened a book in several several weeks and I don't even care.  I'm in the beginning of one of my favorite author's books.  Her newest one.  The one I couldn't WAIT until it came out.  And I can't motivate myself to open the covers (or literally turn on the Kindle).  I don't want to read anything.  All I want to do is sit in front of the TV and watch shows.  And strangely I don't care if I've seen it before just a few hours ago.

This is definitely not the me I've always known.

While I've given up other hobbies (Cross stitching, needlepoint, quilting), I've come back to them in my own time.  Maybe not with the original fervor, but definitely interested.  I know I'm most likely going through the post-dissertation haze, but I don't like not being me.  It's terribly interupted my rhythm and sense of self.

But, on the other hand, I do love knitting and it's been very fun getting started on my new project.  Shown here.  So, I'll embrace the new me the best I can and wave at the old me who is sitting on the opposite shore and hope that at some point someone sends a rescue plane to bring her back because I truly do miss her...

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Yucky Weather

The weather has made me a little blue lately.  It's been really muggy, not hot, but really uncomfortable outside.  My allergies have been awful.  I felt sick yesterday, but it turns out it was in response to the front that came through this morning.

And man, the RAIN this morning.  I left the house and turned around and went back home and sat for an hour. I tried to knit some on the new socks, but Pearl wanted to eat the knitting needles (more likely RIP them out of my hands so she could go hide them).  So, I sat and played with her until the weather cleared up enough to come to work.  The three accidents that I saw on the way here made me glad that I waited.

Now, it's all sunny and clear.

We've been watching Downton Abbey.  Started with the first season (on Netflix) since we wanted to get in at the beginning.  It's amazingly good.

We've also been watching lots of Rick Steves and other travel shows.  This is helping fuel ideas for our trip we're taking in July.  So many things on our list already.  The drawing will be so exciting.  I can hardly wait (for those not in the "know":  we are coming up with a place that we'd go on vacation that day if we had to choose.  These are going onto a list and we are picking a random number on April 1st and that will be our vacation spot.  It's been a very fun way to think about vacation.  And in the meantime we've traveled all over the world in our dreams!)

Today's picture is a close up of a double-weave alpaca blanket I made last year.  The stripes are randomly put in the reed and then woven in plain weave.  It turned out very lovely but I decided that I'll never double weave with alpaca again.  The yarn is very sticky and I had a lot of repair work to do when I took the blanket off of the loom.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

My Poor Socks

Last night I had to rip out the sock I was working on.  I'm using this awesome striping yarn and it just didn't look good with the knitting pattern I'd chosen.  WAY too much going on .  So I ripped it to the begnning of the toe and then tried to catch all my stitches.  After I'd dropped the fourth one, I decided that the inch or so I had of the toe could be ripped out too.  Poor sock.  I'll start back on it today, in a much simpler pattern, but still...poor sock.

I got up again this morning and wove for 38 minutes.  I was good and sweaty by the time I was done.  And what a fun way to start my day.  Kitties running in and out of the studio, weaving a project that's going to make people happy, enjoying my quiet time and energy first thing in the morning.  Amazing.

And now I'm at work counting down the hours until I can go home and start my sock all over again...I may throw some cross stitching in there just for fun.

Today's picture celebrates the kitties in my studio.  There is no better place to nap than a basket full of wool.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Weaving Exercise

So, my "main" goal this year is to get in the habit of exercise.  I am supposed to wake up at 5am and exercise for at least 30 minutes before getting ready to go to work.  For those of you who know me well, you know that that is a HUGE task...I'm NOT a morning person AND I hate to exercise, so putting two things together that I really detest, well, it's a sure sign of failure.

So, I decided after I was able to get back into my studio that I was going to get up at 5 and exercise by weaving.  Weaving, while not sprinting, is pretty considerable exercise.  I have lots of tromping of treadles and throwing of shuttles and beating of beaters, and I get pretty sweaty and sometimes out of breath while I'm doing it, so yeah, I'd say it's some kind of exercise.  And it's fun...and I'll get up at 5, so if the goal is to get into the HABIT, why not start with someplace fun and engaging to me.

That's what I did this morning.  And what fun it was.  I was in a good mood when it was time to go shower AND I got a good bit of weaving done on my secret project.  Plus, I get to make progress and it makes me want to get back in there tonight to do some of the non-exercise-y type things so that when I'm finished with the weaving of one project the non-weaving part (threading the loom for instance) may go by more quickly so that I'll actually get some light cardio while I'm in there.

Today's picture is a close up of a scarf that I made for Alyssa that she found a little scratchy because the main color is wool.  It's a sock yarn that I'm currently knitting the remainder into an afghan square.  The color changes are very subtle but wonderful.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Let there be light!

Yesterday the contractor finished working in my studio!  There is now beautiful lighting at all the work areas...it's amazing.  I wish I'd done this sooner.  Yes, David, I wish I'd listened to you and done this sooner.  I can't wait to get everything moved back to its proper place and get working.

Last night after waffling a bit and playing with some yarns, I decided that I really do want to get back to knitting the sweater I started last year.  I have quite a bit already knit on the back and it's so soft and pretty.  And after my success at making socks, I figure I'd better try knitting a sweater.  I could seriously be in trouble if I get addicted to knitting those too!  Anyway, it's pretty easy so far.  No major patterning to worry about.  I'm just focusing on getting the pieces made so I can construct...and hopefully not be too embarrassed to wear!  If I get into this, maybe I can start making all my tops: weaving fabric and finding attractive patterns and actually sewing.  I'd never really considered it before, but why not...it's something to think about.

Today's photo from the studio is a pretty patterned alpaca and wool scarf.  I sold this to my friend who found the wool scratchy, so I commissioned it. 

Also, I've been thinking about Grandma a good bit lately.  It's weird how I will start thinking about her on my drive to work and then one of the gospel songs by Brad Paisley will play. 

Thursday, January 19, 2012

My First Pair!

And I'm so very proud of them.  It's very exciting to actually be WEARING them today.  How awesome.

Because I'm learning and experimenting, I made the first sock a little big, so I made the second sock the next size down.  It fits great everywhere, but I didn't give it enough length to accommodate that it isn't as "round" so it's a tad short, nothing major, but lessons learned.  LOVE them and I'll be starting my second pair soon.  I need a little bit of a break from teensy tinesy needles for a little while. (maybe a day???)

The experience of making this pair of socks was really quite fun.  I learned a lot and thoroughly enjoyed making them...I feel a little addicted and wonder how I'm going to manage to make all the socks that I want to make.  Everyone watch out...you may be getting socks as gifts in the near future!  I find it so satisfying to MAKE things that I can wear.  This morning as I got dressed I was all excited to wear MY socks and then I put on MY hat and MY scarf and it was just amazing.  Definitely a proud moment.

I hope you enjoy the pic of my snuggly feet! :)  I know I'm enjoying how snuggly my feet feel today!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

My Studio's a Mess

The contractor came over yesterday to install the lighting in my studio.  He called as I was getting in my car to come home to tell me that he wasn't going to be able to finish tonight.  Not a major catastrophe because I have knitting and another secret project I can work on without having to be in my studio, but I was really looking forward to weaving last night...that one secret project just keeps getting drug out and out and out...

Oh, well, the lighting will be worth it.  And it's just a day or two...

In order to provide a little zen in my life, here is a picture of my loom, in it's happy state.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Long Weekend

I don't usually like coming back from a long weekend.  I have successfully gotten myself into my happy place only to have to come to work and enter my unhappy space--getting up early, dealing with stressors, doing work that I find tedious or boring (all of which greeted me at the door this morning, not to mention being 10 minutes late).

Today was really no exception.  I truly thoroughly and completely enjoyed this weekend.  Saturday was all to myself.  I wove, read, knitted, cross stitched and otherwise just enjoyed myself.  I watched some TV. I've recently discovered "CREATE TV."  Who knew there was a channel of quality tv shows totally dedicated to crafting, cooking and travel!  I also discovered that Create TV broadcasts on a 6 hour rotation.  Unfortunately that fascinating travel show is only fascinating the first couple of times.

As I was struggling to wake up this morning on my drive in and thinking about what I wanted to write about today, I thought about this form of relaxing through my crafts.  How I use it as my stress outlet...all the stress goes out and very little stress goes in (sometimes things are difficult, but I look at it as a puzzle and figure it out and then life is good again).   So, imagine my surprise when I read this entry by the Yarn Harlot this morning.  Yes, indeed...relaxing through crafting is the only way to go.  And ironically, another blog I follow, Weaving a Life, had a post in response to the Yarn Harlot's.

I think it's so fascinating to sit and stitch and create things.  I love reading charts and patterns and figuring things out.  The puzzles to solve and the positive energy put into it is always exciting and almost always puts me in a good mood...and if not at least it keeps me busy so that I don't snap someone's head off.  I definitely love spending my long weekends with something I love.  I can't imagine how awful it would be to sit in front of the tv with nothing to do...I'd go bonkers, as would everyone around me.

Today's photo from the studio is a lovely alpaca "sock yarn" scarf.  The variegated yarn is sock yarn and the black is natural alpaca.  Very soft and lovely.  My friend bought it as a gift for his mother.

Friday, January 13, 2012


Last night I had several friends over for a crafting night.  Some groups call themselves "Stitch and Bitch" but that never really fit our personality so we came up with a name that was more appropriate:  Crafty Vixens.  Crafty because we do all different crafts.  Some people knit, one also crochets.  I cross stitch and needlepoint.  I've also quilted as has another woman.  We bring snacks, though we're not big eaters, drink wine (and we've been known to put down a couple bottles of wine...), and talk and talk.  It's all really wonderful and social and such fun to see what everyone is doing.  The Vixens part of our name came from a particularly wonderful bottle of wine (sparkling shiraz) that we enjoyed by Fox Creek called Vixen.  I can't find it any more so I suppose they must not be producing it...which is a shame.

I worked on a secret project last night, so I won't show a picture of that today... :)

Most importantly about Crafty Vixens:  I was thinking about it on the way to work and how I would write about it on the blog this morning and I thought about how my Grandmother would have loved to have heard me tell her about each member of our group, what they're working on, what we ate, drank and talked about.  She'd want to know what we wore, and even if the cats hung out with us.  She'd like to know about what each person looks like, what they do during their "day job" and how I came to know them.  (Interestingly one of our group I met AT the group as she was invited by another person who no longer comes.)

And while I was thinking about how Grandma would have loved to hear about my Crafty Vixens, and that she would have loved our name, I got to missing her desperately.  I spent a good bit of my drive here crying and wondering how after six months I can still be hit with a blow to my chest that hurts so bad I can hardly breathe.

Today's picture is of a scarf that I made for Grandma.  It's solid black very fine chenille with little ridges of extra threads in random places.  Lovely.  I'm told that she really liked it.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Stressful day...

Yesterday at work was a stressful day.  I'm trying not to talk about work on the blog, but it has a relationship to the goals I have for this year--focusing on the things I love (i.e. my crafts, family, friends, travel, not necessarily in that order).  One of the purposes of this blog is to help me focus and keep my head around that, so that my stress level doesn't get out of whack.

One of the ways I am using crafts to manage that stress is that I'm knitting at lunch.  I didn't like the square I was working on so I ripped it out yesterday and started something easy.  I am using sock yarn so it'll take an inordinant number of lunches to get enough squares to make a blanket, but what a great way to use up those little bits and ends of the yarn.

I'm also thinking about the blog and what I want to write about on the way to work.  This helps pass the 45 minutes drive, which is very boring, and ensures that I'm keeping myself honest to my focus.

Another thing I'm doing is making sure that I do some weaving in the evening.  Last night I threaded my secret project.  I love working on it because, as I said yesterday, when I make something for someone I can think about them.  And then surprises are even that much more fun because I get to imagine how she will respond when she gets her surprise.  What an awesome way to spend 30 minutes in the evening.

By the time I sat down to chill, I was relaxed.  I slept great last night and even got up to exercise this morning.  Stress management is a great thing and I'm so happy that I have crafting to get me through it.

Today's photo is of an alpaca scarf I designed last year.  The warp is a lovely natural black and the weft is royal blue.  I chose this funky little broken twill and what an impact it made.  It's very very soft.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A collection of crafts

I worry that I'm a craft collector.  That I stay interested in something only for so long and then drop it only to add another craft.  I started out as an avid pot-holder maker.  I wove so many pot-holders on that little plastic loom I'm surprised it didn't break.  I'm sure there are some of you who received a number of my woven potholders.

Then I became an avid cross stitcher.  I cross stitched all the time.  I made stuff for everyone I know.  I even still have this butterflies on rainbows 4 piece thing I made in the 80s...I have no idea what to do with it as it's too small to be framed.  But I did a good job and it'll impress someone someday so I still have it.

In the meantime I also made these yarn things on a wooden loom mom had.  I think they were pot-holders and placemats.  I found it difficult because tying the knots tight enough was very difficult.  I also did these wonderful little images made with thread and golden pins. You wrapped the thread aroud the pins according to a numbered chart and pattern and it made this awesome picture.  I gave all of those away.  I hope someone still has one or two.   But those crafts didn't stick with me for long.

I also played around with crocheting and made a ton of granny squares.  I have no idea where those ended up.  I was a sloppy crocheter and didn't really know what to do after granny squares, so I gave that up as well.

I decided when I was in college that I wanted to be a quilter.  It took several failed attempts before it finally took hold, but I became quite an avid quilter for a while.  Quilting superceded my interest in cross stitch.  I haven't quilted sersiously since Hurricane Katrina.  I mourned the loss of this craft like I would mourn the loss of a close friend.  I don't know if I'll ever get it back in quite the same way.  I've tried, but it hasn't captured my interest.  I still have lots of fabric and am helping Alyssa learn to piece, but the passion just isn't there in the same way it used to be.

I remember trying my hand at needlepoint one night during the Academy Awards.  After watching the entire awards ceremony, I had completed only about 3 square inches. I decided that needlepoint was way too slow for my tastes....and gave it up only to take to it in a big way many many years later when I needed a mindless craft that felt a lot like coloring with yarn.  I wouldn't say I'm an avid needlepointer, but if you come to my house you might think so by the sheer volume of framed canvases I have hanging around the house.

I always wanted to learn to weave on a "real" loom...and finally in October of 2007 I took lessons.  I was hooked from the first moment I sat at the loom.  I loved weaving.  Unlike the other crafts I took up there were no major failed attempts...there were no stops and starts.  Just 100% passionate time spent at the loom...until I started working heavily on the dissertation.  Now that it's over I plan to become 100% passionate about weaving again.  That's what this week is about.

And knitting entered my life last year. I really struggled at first, but I like it quite a bit for its portability and accessibility.  Most people know someone who knits.  They have knitted clothes and understand the stretchy comforting quality of those items.  I really enjoy slowing down and really looking at and feeling the yarn and seeing the actual shape of a knitted item take place.  It's satisfying to really understand the process of construction.  I'm not avid yet, but it's close :)

I don't know what else is out there for my craft-wise. I have always toyed with the idea of opening a multi-purpose craft shop.  It appears that I would be quite adept at it seeing that I've put my hand into so many crafting pots...

Today's picture is of my work table.  The yarn sometimes speaks to me and tells me what it wants to be.  When it does I pick it up, put it together with all the other yarns that are needed to make magic happen and then I let it sit there and sing until I'm ready to work on it.  You can see that I've been doing quite a bit of dreaming lately and not much weaving.  That pile of yarn will soon become something beautiful.  I promise.  And I'll highlight it here when it does.

Monday, January 9, 2012

What Crafting Means to Me

This morning David sent me a link to an article about knitting in prisons.  They are teaching a group of prisoners to knit and in the meantime they are learning important life skills--like patience, anger management, goal setting, and creativity.  I like it.  I like that people see the life benefits of crafting.

I've been creating things ever since I can remember.  The thought of sitting with my hands in my lap and nothing else to do makes me feel rather crazy.  I can't imagine not having my crafting to do while watching tv, or on a Saturday afternoon.  It is an essential part of who I am.

I've never really thought of myself as an artist, per se, because I don't create designs, but I'm a darn good technician.  I've often dreamed of cross stitching or weaving for production.  Just tell me what you want, give me the yarn and pay me by the hour and I'd be a happy camper.  Except I've always had the dawning realization that people probably wouldn't want to pay that many hours for the final product...

Crafting for me, though, is a necessary outlet.  I love working cross stitch designs and thinking about the person I'm giving it to, or where it will hang in my house.  When I travel I buy yarn or needlepoint canvases so I can create it to make for my home and remember the trip.  I have a particularly lovely flower needlepoint that I bought in France, quilt made of fabric from all over the country, scarves from yarn bought in many diffferent places as well.  I love having those memories travel through my fingers as I work.  I love thinking about the person and putting positive loving energy into those items that they'll receive, and hopefully enjoy.  I also enjoy making something for myself because it feels special to spend time making "me" happy.

Today's photo from the studio is a houndstooth scarf I made for my hairdresser.  It's a nice traditional pattern, which I knew he'd love, with a twist since I used bright royal blue and purple (his colors).

Friday, January 6, 2012

Yesterday I Talked about Weaving...

...to a group of people who knew nothing about it.  Now, they WERE my student workers, but they did act interested and seemed to learn quite a bit about it, so it was fun and very rewarding.  I could have gone on for hours.

There were pictures taken but they are awful.  The lighting was weird and the flash didn't work, so I won't share them here.

I'm a little panicked becuase I have company this weekend and don't know when I'll be able to weave or knit.  I have a whole foot left to do on the sock and I desperately want to put it on and see how it looks and if it fits and all that jazz. I'm having dreams about it being finished.

I also really want to weave everyday, but I think that Pearl has learned the phrase "I'm about to go weave" because that's exactly when she comes and curls up on my feet and I can't possible send her away.

Today's photo from the studio is a really cool one.  It's the view from the apron and into the cloth beam underneath the front of the loom.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Hand-knitted Socks

I'm absolutely fascinated by hand-knitted socks.  It's the whole reason I wanted to learn to knit.  I wanted to knit socks.  Not that I necessarily want to wear thick, hand-knitted socks on a daily basis, but I think socks are awesome and I WILL wear them around the house.  Also, I remember my mother crocheting these awesome booties with loops all over them.  We would wear them out each year and get a new pair for Christmas.  By that time we were having to wear our socks under the booties because of the giant holes in them (probably the direct result of slip-sliding-away through the kitchen...)

But, back to hand-knitted socks.  They are complicated and I just knew I wasn't going to get to knit one straight from the start...besides there was also the whole coordination thing.  I was bad at crocheting and I didn't see how I was ever going to manage to hold two sticks together and swish them back and form while making loopedy-loops with my hands and have any sort of magic happen.  So, I never braved it.

Then one day in the summer/fall of 2010 my mother gave me these Knifty Knitters and I started making hats.  I'd never been interested in wearing hats before, much less making them, but these things were awesome.  Soon everyone I knew had a knitted hat.  The problem?  I was bored because I could only use one size of yarn or doubled up another size but the hats all looked the same.  That was boring and reading the directions to try to do something interesting on the Knifty Knitter was just too confusing. 

The answer:  I must learn to knit.  I needed something to do in the car with all the trips we were taking in 2011 and, by-golly, I really wanted some hand-knitted socks.

So, I tried.  And gave up.

I bought some different Knifty Knitters that I could knit in long swatches.  This was some better, but not much.  I got bored with that after a couple of scarves.

So, I decided I was going to make the knitting happen.  I tried again, floundered, fluttered, then somehow took off.  I made a hat, then another, then started a scarf (that took over 10 months to finish becuase it's just SO boring to knit a scarf).  I've made a couple of cowls, several hats, and another half of a scarf (it's lacy and pretty and I'll eventually finish it).  I've also started a sweater, but remember, I had a goal when I started knitting--socks.

I've been looking at patterns, looking at the construction of socks I own, thinking about socks and was so intimidated by the thought of tiny double pointed needles and skinny sock yarn that I just didn't want to make the leap--except I was dying to...so I did.

Last night I turned the heel on my sock, reestablished the round and started working on the gusset and instep (sounds all kinds of fancy doesn't it???).  I'm so excited to finish up my first sock.  It isn't perfect, but it'll be pretty and honestly who will be looking at my heel and ankle anyway.  I think a couple more evenings and I'll have it finished.  It's very rewarding, and the whole reason I started the knitting adventure after all...and to be honest, I think I'm rather hooked!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


In the effort to make things happen and direct my energies towards the things I love, we have decided to put better lighting in my studio.  It's not really a studio but I like to think of it that way and it makes my time spent in there feel more purposeful.  However, because I am at work or traveling to work from 7-5 everyday, I don't get in there until nighttime so it's always dark.  Today the contractor came by to assess for new lighting.  Very exciting.  There will be more than sufficient light for me to do any task.  I can't wait for everything to be complete.

I'm also putting forth effort to knit at work.  20 minutes of knitting at work isn't a lot, but it does take some edge off of the stress and helps rekindle my energy and interest in my project.  Plus, as my Grandma Thornton taught me, little bits of work towards a goal makes the task much less arduous.

Today's picture features, Pearl.  It was taken last year, probably March or April, so she's still a kitten.  She was sitting on some yarn that I was about to wind into a ball.  She looks a little sinister, but she does in pictures. I don't know why, maybe it's her big nose.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Beginnings

There's always something magical about the beginning of the year....college bowl games aside.  The promise of a new beginning, a clean slate, a marker in which to gauge one's progress towards a goal.  It's all very exciting.

Since I've spent my entire life in an academic setting, the new year also promises a new semester, and that's always been the most exciting time of the year for me.

But this year is different somehow.  I'm at the beginning of a year but at the end of a major goal, having graduated with my Ph.D. in December.  Defending was one major hurdle, getting the revisions completed a pain in the rear, but actually walking across the stage was very affirming, and exciting, and also somehow signaled that the end was there.

And now I'm a little bit adrift.  I'm trying to find that "thing" to keep me going and excited about life.  After two very  needed weeks of reflection I have determined:
  • I really enjoy my crafting time
  • I love spending time with my husband and family
  • I love being able to dream and plan on going places
So, my goal this year is to spend my time making all of those things be the center part of my life and ensuring that I have the energy to enjoy them. 

This blog signifies that new beginning.  I am going to highlight the awesome things in my life.  I will create something every day--it may be little bits and pieces, but there will be pictures of progress on projects, reviews of books that I'm in the middle of, travel plans we're making (and most likely changing!), the little joys of everyday living, experiences with my family and friends, and memories of the wonderful life I've lived so far.

I welcome you to my new blog and I hope that I become a little part of what makes your day special.  Please give me feedback on how I'm doing and what you're enjoying along the way!