Friday, April 03, 2020


It seems like we are all waiting. We are waiting for the coronavirus to come to our county, our town, our neighborhood, our home. Waiting is stressful. We are waiting for the housing market to move again. We are waiting for schools to open again and life to go back to normal. We are waiting for life, for death, for love, for everything. We really live in a constant state of waiting. While we are not panicking, we are anticipating the possibility of the virus coming closer. It's like watching a storm roll in to shore from the ocean, only longer. You know it's coming. You know and can see it. When it finally comes to shore, it will hit hard. It will destroy things (lives) in its path. But then it is over, and we wait for the next storm. 

This waiting seems harder. All aspects of life are being put on hold. We are cautioned to stay inside, away from people, when people give us the most comfort. Watching children play together on the playground, adults talking around a table, families shopping in a store, individuals reading a book or eating a meal. These sights are rare now, and it will be like that for a month, maybe two. News reports and decisions are made moment by moment and nothing past two weeks has been mentioned. 

So, what are we to do? We scroll Facebook and fret, create memes about toilet paper and beer, and attempt to make life seem normal.

It doesn't work. It's here now, and it affects all of us.

Friday, February 21, 2020

Lingering Illness

I have something that refuses to go away. It's a remnant from the flu, and I cannot seem to shake it. I have rewatched Gilmore Girls seasons 1 to 7, read, and am beginning to craft more. Housework has suffered, but each day is a limited amount of energy (much less than normal), and I have to watch my level of activity, as it makes me cough. 

I picked up a quilt I started about 5 or 6 years ago (the embroidery is taking much longer than expected, and now I am running out of the thread color for one part). I tried to work on a sweater, and found tonight that I messed it up. Fortunately I can fix it, and I am not too far into it. I have now transitioned to another blanket, this one crocheted. A simple pattern with self-striping yarn, it moves quickly, but at a small gauge, so progress always feels slow. 

I have one and about 2/3 skeins left. Maybe if I work diligently on it, I can have it finished soon. 

Illness has kept us from having a party for our eldest. We had to reschedule again, and again, and are waiting to reschedule yet again. 

My Little Man is a man - he's 13. Time flies.

Monday, January 20, 2020

As I Lay Ill

I am just getting over the flu this week. It started Wednesday of last week, just with body aches and fatigue. Thursday I slept most of the day and fought off nausea. Friday was the worst - I was sick all day and when it was finally over, I got stupid. I tried to take a shower. That was a BIG mistake. I wound up passing out (for the third time ever) and falling in the shower. Fortunately, the worst thing that happened was a bruised toe. I should have known better, but didn't do better. At 39, you'd think I would, but we all have dumb moments. That was one of mine.

This year, I have resolutions - resolutions are lovely things. Most people give up on them. I've read that by mid-January people have given up on their new year's resolutions. Maybe it's a matter of perspective and understanding what a resolution is. The dictionary defines resolution as "a firm decision to do or not to do something." There is a breakdown somewhere - a firm decision shouldn't be discarded easily. It is great to have lofty goals, but without a way to get to them, they are useless. We can't expect to wake up one morning a completely different person, unless we pulled a Freaky Friday. Resolutions are goals that are reached by small, daily choices. This is not your SMART goal procedure, which many claim will help you reach your ultimate life. Resolutions are a determination to do something, or not to do something. My resolutions this year:

1) Be healthier. This is multifaceted, and complex, and amorphous, I know. It's about making better choices. Smaller portions, more veggies, more movement. Drink more water. It's not a defined destination, but a lifestyle change. Something sustainable to better myself.

2) Read more. I have already started this one by having a morning routine which includes this. I set a goal on GoodReads, and keep track of what I read there. I read about 60 books last year, and plan to read 52 this year (I have some huge tomes chosen for this year). Come join me!

3) Craft more. This one is one most crafters have. I have LOADS of craft projects started, and after Christmas this past year, I want a better Christmas. Fewer bought presents, more homemade ones. More personal touches. I want to make more time for crafting, as I enjoy it, and so do the recipients. My oldest daughter is also a crafter - she loves art supplies and craft supplies and she's my crafting buddy. Again, no definite goal in mind (like clearing out all the WIPs) but making progress, and have a more tailored, handcrafted year is progress.

There are probably more, but for now, this will do. Small steps on a daily basis make great change.

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Updating for the New Year

Wow. What a year it's been. Spending the first half sick or busy, and the second half busy-busy, it makes the year fly by. Crafting has been done, but off and on, and it doesn't look quite like it used to. Time is surprisingly less available than before. The holidays were crazy busy, with cleaning, cooking, baking, and crafting. This year, I hope to read more and craft more. Here's the year in review.

Home Depot Workshops teaching life skills!

Handcrafting at it's best!

Everyone loves it!

The circus came to town! Not a big one, but fun!

Because everyone loves a Komodo Dragon. And the zoo.

South Carolina Aquarium - sea turtles rule.

Starting third grade and ready to take on the world.

Between Kindergarten and 1st grade, but challenging the older two at every turn.

Almost all grown up - but not yet.

Christmas pictures - pajama pants made by me!
This year promises lots of changes. We are looking forward to some new things coming and I am planning some major projects.

This time of year everyone wants to get organized. We all see the pictures from magazines, with perfectly organized and decorated living rooms, dining rooms, kitchens, closets, and bed rooms. The problem with all of these is that they are staged. No one actually lives there, and even if they do, it doesn't look like that daily. I hope to start putting some the ideas into practice, but with a healthy dose of reality. I also want to share some fun FREE things that I find. There are tons of things out there, and it's hard to find them sometimes. I have had to dig for resources since we live on a small, tight budget. It would be nice to have a place to share them, to hopefully make them more visible to others who might need them as well. Do you have any particular need you'd like to have a resource for? If I can help, I'd love to! Leave a comment and I'll answer!

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Mid-August Night Dreams

It's hot. Like incredibly hot - we've had temperatures over 90 for the past 4 months. It's usually hot in Georgia, but we've had more 90+ degree days this year than normal. And we've been weirdly busy, without planning it.

I quit working at the college, because childcare is now unreliable at best, and borders occasionally on negligent. Things continue to be complicated with our living situation, in ways that it shouldn't be, but is.

We started our new homeschool year. Each year changes, and this year was no exception. All three are doing "for real" school work - even the Littlest Princess. We also have more time because I am not teaching out of the house anymore. This makes it a little smoother and less halting. We're still adjusting, as we now get to school a full 5 days instead of 3 full and 2 partial days. We still go to book clubs, although those are changing too.

We managed to take our first family vacation this year - we went to Charleston. It was fun (and educational - we slipped a few educational things in on the kids, which were incredibly fun for everyone and they didn't recognize it as "learning") and we all got sunburned at the beach.

We are growing together as a family - traveling the winding path of life and exploring the twists and turns along the way. It's not an easy path, but each challenge - a bump in the road, a twist in the path, a rock or tree limb that inhibits our way - we grow, and learn, and change. And we do it together.

In addition to educating our children, I have been attempting to educating myself. Sometimes my education is simply by reading a book outside my normal genre. I find being drawn to history and biographies more. I usually read fiction - classical literature, murder mysteries, and even some newer fiction. I still do, but I am broadening my scope. I have been picking up historical fiction, historical accounts, biographies. These are books that before held little to no interest to me before. I have also been looking in to homeopathic remedies more. Not in a crazy "modern medicine is trying to kill us" way, but in a "would a natural option with fewer or no side effects work" kind of way. Holistic medicine, treating the underlying cause and not just the symptoms as well as treating the whole person and not just the disease (truly caring for people), is an interest. I've had an up and down relationship with medication - I think most people would say the same. If there's a better way, shouldn't we find it? What works for me may not work for you. Here's an example: I know someone who swears by ketoprofen. He thinks it's great for his sciatica. And it works for him. I have taken it, and it does nothing for me. I get more relief from back pain with a heating pad than ketoprofen. Do I tell him he's wrong? No - just that the pills don't work for me. I try other things to alleviate the pain. I have been searching for herbs and extracts that can help alleviate my symptoms, because it's more natural. The ketoprofen can cause constipation or diarrhea, but the heating pad won't. I don't eschew the use of Western medicine - I still have ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and take antibiotics when needed. I just think Western medicine isn't the be-all-end-all to all our health issues.

In the world of crafts, I really haven't been doing much. I've been repairing toys here and there, knitting a few washcloths, and trying to finish what I've started. I am trying to make progress on different projects here and there, but I am focusing more on reading this year. Reading is important in learning, and teaching, and I am trying to do both.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Falling by the wayside

So much has been going on! And yet, not so much. Things seem to fall by the wayside at times. The holidays were a whirlwind, followed by a birthday for Little Man (he's 12 now!), and I have been trying to get on top of things around the house. The first order of business has been the basement, as I can do it in pieces and it stays relatively untouched until I can make more time for it. It's a slow process. Extremely slow, as I haven't been as proactive as I should. Last week, half of us came down with a stomach bug (not a happy thing) and I have been trying to catch up on daily things, so special projects have been set aside.

I managed to finish a cross stitch unicorn project for the Littlest Princess, and I started to block my Fading Point shawl. Then I found a dropped stitch, so I had to fix it. And it sits, still waiting to be put back together. I am also attempting for the third time, the bottom band of ribbing on my Boxy sweater. I feel like I can get a project 80% done, before something happens and then it sits languishing in the WIP pool, floundering around for months before I can pick it up again.

I have so many things, it feels like, and yet I know I have no more than most people. Or maybe I do, and that's my problem. I am working on being more consistent and finishing things this year. One goal is reading. I missed it terribly, so I have a lofty goal of a book a week this year. That makes 52 books. Some are audio, some are printed, and I have some eBooks too. I am trying to be intentional about how I spend my time, and how my children spend their time. We live in a cramped location, and I keep trying to make it not feel so cramped. I hope I am making it work okay for the most part.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Recently in Living Color

January is already gone, can you believe it? The days have been short, the nights long, and the weather cold, rainy, sunny and undecided. We have been passing around a cold recently here, and I just finished 2 small projects and a large one. I finished my Fading Point wrap (no pictures yet, and I haven't blocked it either, but all the knitting is done). I finally finished two projects from Mollie Makes Magazine (a great crafting magazine that shows all kinds of crafts). I made the Toucan Keyring from Issue 94 and the doughnut pincushion from Issue 96. My girls have those now - I gave them willingly to the tiny hands. =)

Mollie Makes issue 94 contents
Mollie Makes Magazine, Issue 94

Mollie Makes 96 free gift
From Mollie Makes blog, Issue 96
I have also been knitting on my sweater, which seems to be taking forever. I have it down to the last forty rows for the body, and have done about 12. It is the neverending stockinette stitch.

No photo description available.
Still working...
There has been buzz in the knitting community about protests, racism, "white privilege" and many other things. These same people who cry out say those who don't are complicit in the problem. I don't know that that is really true - some of us still live by the old adage "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all." If there is nothing productive to add to the conversation, then we are all just blowing hot air (and I mean that literally). 

However, sometimes there are things that need to be said, in love and discipline, to show we really do care. It is important that everyone has a voice. It is important that everyone gets a chance, and equal chance, to express themselves. It is also true that whatever you go looking for, you will find. If you look for love, you will find it. If you look for hate, you will find it. You cannot know a man's heart. You cannot know what someone else is thinking, or feeling, or their motivations behind their actions or words, unless they tell you (and even then, sometimes people lie). 

So, instead of thinking the worst about people, and making this a dark horrid place to live where people live in fear of being berated and bullied online and afraid to speak their minds respectfully, shouldn't we think better of people? If we all really want a Utopian Society, one where everyone is treated fairly and kindly, where thoughts and feelings can be expressed without fear of retribution, shouldn't we be the change we want to see? Isn't that a better use of our time, talents and energy? #bethechange