Thursday, December 31, 2015

Clean Sweep

Well, not really. But at least it's cleaner. Many years ago I purchased my dining room table and chairs. The house I was renting had a table and chairs that took up all the space in the tiny kitchen. I knew that I wouldn't always be in this house and when a friend saw this table at a yard sale I purchased it. It is a lovely oak table, one pedestal with a leaf that allows it to sit six. I rarely have the leaf in it. But I put the table in the dining room of the rental and I was using the dining room as a sewing room and there it stayed as a catch all and cutting table.

Fast forward to current house and I think I've eaten at the table less than ten times. I'm single and just never formally sit at the table. It has been used as a sewing center and catch all for a long time and has been (still is) a hot mess. I prefer to use it as a study center. Today as I was doing my last scripture writing for 2015, I was in my sewing room using the big office desk that I currently use as a sewing desk. I was sitting there thinking I really need to make space for my computer and my bible things and it hit me that I have a perfectly good table but it was holding everything under the sun.

Boxes of knitting goodies, project bags, cutting mat from the last time I used it as a sewing center, crafting items from last years Christmas presents and Christmas bags and boxes from last Christmas, 2014 not 2015 were covering the table! Yes, as I said it was a hot mess and I am such a clutter queen. I am the one the book Sink Reflections was written for and the Fly Lady is my friend. I haven't been flying in quite some time. To be honest I've never really gotten off the ground. I have the book pulled out to reread it and I know where my home blessing book is located. I just need to put it in place. I'll come back to this in minute.

I realized that the hot mess had to go and really needed the table to function as my study center, my war room! I spent quite some time this morning putting things away and I'm still not completely finished. I still have a few things to put away but I have bibles out and notebooks out and bible study books stacked and ready to use. I'm actually sitting at the table and typing this blog post! It is a great feeling but as I sit here and realize how great it feels to have most of the clutter gone one thing occurs to me, I don't like this table or the uncomfortable chairs!!!! I'm sitting here laughing. The chairs have issues. Three of the six need to have rungs glued back in place and I need to use some cushions or I need to purchase a new table and chairs. I'm leaning towards the new table and chairs, but I'm a very frugal and why spend money when this table works. I'll be shopping for cushions soon.

Back to Fly Lady and my clutter, this isn't a resolution but a fact of life. I've got to get my clutter under control. My house is a mess and I am embarrassed to have anyone over. I am going to reread Sink Reflections and I'm going to work on decluttering. I have great book shelf in the dining area. But in the move five years ago, it lost two shelves. I either need to get two shelves made or ditch this bookshelf and get one that is functional. I have lots and lots of books and this needs to be a working bookcase. I have a lot of bible study books that are currently boxed in the garage because I don't have enough space for them in my house. Again, clutter fills up the area and isn't functional. I want my dining table to be a study center. As I said in an earlier post, I'm ready for my relationship with the Lord to be back in green valleys and that's not going to happen if I'm studying His Word.

My home isn't going to be open for me to have small bible studies or knitting groups over if it isn't decluttered and usable. When I moved in 5 1/2 years ago, that was my dream, using this home God provided as a place of study and fellowship. The dining room table was the tip of the iceberg, but I'm ready to dive in swim around. I'm ready to use this home as I originally intended.

I'm so blessed! Cluttered, but blessed!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

LIFE End of the Year Review

I stink as a blogger and a very good friend tells me I criticize myself too much! It really caused me to stop and think about what I say. I realized I'm very vocal about my inadequacies and I need to stop that.

But I'm going to put a few things here to hold myself accountable. First thing I did wrong was trying make myself blog. I had very few posts in 2015. I don't do well making myself to this blog. I did do a really good job of posting my knitting projects in Ravelry and I'm very proud of that. I'm going to let the blog flow naturally and not force it into something it isn't.

I am having a good year at work. That cats and the sister are good! I'm enjoying my fairy granddaughters and the kids are about to add a fairy grandson and another grandaughter to the mix. I'm so thankful I have a dear friend who let me be a part of her children's life and the kiddos love me and still include me in their grown up life. Thus the fairy grandchildren who I treasure. Honestly, it can be hard to be mid life and realize not only am I not having children but I'm not going to enjoy grandchildren and family in my life as I get older. I'm hushing before I get really emotional! :)

I have really enjoyed my church family this year. Last year I joined a life group - thanks to Priscilla Shirer and Beth Moore. I listened to some of their simulcasts and realized I was missing the connectedness of bible study group. I asked one of my media co-volunteers about his life group and was immediately added to his group. Just like family, whoosh, I was apart of their group and doing life with them. This year they've added four babies to the group so we've not met really regular, but we are doing life together, praying for one another and studying the word together, doing meals together. Holding one another accountable and just loving on one another and it's awesome.

The past month I've been doing a scripture writing plan from Sweet Blessings and she just posted a January plan. It was something I saw on facebook and decided to try. I love it! It is truly just a few short verses a day and I've not been really consistent. Life happens, BUT it is truly such a small time commitment that I am totally caught up and really want to stay caught up. There is something about writing the Word that is amazing and I am going to continue. I started a new spiral bound notebook in December and I want it to be filled with my handwriting and His Word throughout the year.

Honesty moment - since my mom died in 2009, I've been in a really odd place with God. Actually, it goes back further to Dad's passing in 2006, but really grounded in deep after 2009. I've worshiped the Lord, studied and prayed but had an overall dry time. I'm not saying it's totally desert, there have been some lush river time and great springs of joy, worship, and prayer. But I'm really tired of the desert and I want to be back in the valleys and on the mountain tops. I want the Holy Spirit to be teaching me, rebuking me, loving me and laughing with me. I want a refreshed relationship. It has been growing for a while and I've had some heart to heart talks and listened the Him. I'm still not sure where He is taking me but I'm ready to hold on for the ride. It feels good.

Today wasn't really about the stitching and was totally about the sentiments. I'm good with that.

Blessings to whoever reads any of this.

Monday, December 28, 2015

End of the Year Review

I can't believe it's been over six months since my last post.

As the title says, I'm going to do a review and it's all about knitting today. This was a year of firsts for me. Being fairly new to knitting that isn't hard to do but I wanted to push myself out of my comfort zone. I started the year with a lace cowl and when I gave it to sister I knew I was making progress. She commented on how nice it was and I know she loves anything I make but she's also honest about what things look like.

The next really big first was my first pair of completed socks. I finished those in February and they are wearable. I reworked a heel over the summer and I'm still not happy with the fit but again they are wearable and I will wear them if we ever have cold weather. Today's temperature is 70+. I had started and ripped out several socks before completing the first pair. This included a successfully made diagonal lace sock that took months before I decided to create its mate. The mate still isn't finished.

I entered Stash Dash 2015 and it was the first time I've pushed myself to knit so many projects. I did knit 3000 meters from the beginning of summer break to the start of school. I did my first side to side shawlette - Saroyan and my first applied edging on Piper's Journey.

I completed my first lace shawl - Pebble Beach and I love it!!! I started a second shawl as apart of a mystery knit along. But school was wearing me out and I needed to have an alert brain to knit the second one - Summertide.

I knit my first colorwork at the end of November - beginning of December. I finished my first ever sweater - 5 Hour Sweater. It did take more than 5 hours. I followed it up with a Newborn Vertebrae that went so fast I didn't have time to make a project page while working on it. I knit it in 4 days, really more like two. I started it Christmas Eve and finished it early on the 28th.

I'm going to spend the next few days reading and giving my hands a rest from knitting. I hope to post again tomorrow about my year of Bible challenges and for the most part failings. More on that tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

KAL Update

just a little knitting update

Sometimes I really don't like working on my iPad or on blogger. They often don't play nice together. I'm having trouble loading photos. So we'll see if these work.

As you can see I've been knitting on my Piper's Journey and it is blocking now. It has been very cool here in TN and it has taken a little while for this shawl to dry. I finished it and it counts towards the Knit Girllls Stash Dash 2015 KAL and the Around Your Neck KAL in the Suburban Stitcher group.

I also got very creative this week and ordered my own custom designed labels for my project bags. I used Winchester Lambourne on Etsy to design my label and I purchased labels from Ananemone. I am so excited to about them. I am waiting on delivery before I start making a few more project bags.

This a my Pebble Beach Shawl. It's had very little knitting because I've been focused on my Yowza Shawl.

The Yowza Shawl is almost ready for the ruffle and bind off. 40 grams more to knit before I begin that part of the shawl.

That's my Update. ;)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

End of Year!

Yes, just two more days and this school year is in the books!! I'm very glad it's over and I look forward to next year.

My summer includes knitting, quilting and I'm really hoping cross stitch. I have new glasses (bifocals) that seem to be fit correctly. I really hope I can see to stitch. I'm also hoping to find a new recliner to stitch in but that's not high on my summer list of things to buy. Tires, new laptop and a vacation are at the top of my list.

My shawls are well underway and Pioneer Girl on the left is almost halfway through the garter rows. I splurged on some gorgeous Miss Babs Yowza skeins/cakes and cast on Yowza Weight It Shawl 2 by Susan B Anderson. Love it!!!

I'm heading to Mid TN Sheep and Fiber Festival Friday and I have no idea what to expect. But I'm sure I will have fun. Will post photos when I get back!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Summer of KALs

Last summer seemed to be a quilting summer and I do have quilts planned for this summer. But I also have been planning my knitting.

I have a thing for shawls and thanks to a trip to Stitches South, I have some gorgeous yarn to knit . I purchased a really pretty plum to knit Balsam Hollow by Paula Emons-Fuessle. It is in Bugga by the Verdant Gryphon.

I'm currently putting the applied edging on Piper's Journey, also by Paula. It is out of  Lana Gatto Super Soft in a beautiful Lilac. I was hoping to finish this piece soon, but I am being sucked into knit alongs, particularly Stash Dash in the Knit Girllls group. I'm thinking of trying for the 3K this summer. The timing aligns perfectly with my summer. So I'll finish this shawl after May 22, the beginning of Stash Dash.

There are three other KALs that play nicely with Stash Dash, the Around Your Neck KAL with Suburban Stitcher, the Little House Pioneer Girl KAL with Little Skein in the Big Wool, and the Pebble Beach KAL with Paula Emons-Fuessle Knitting Pipeline. It is kind of like a pyramid with Stash Dash as the peak.

I have to purchase more needles to be able to knit all the things! But I hope to cast on my Pebble Beach this week, having also acquired yarn for this shawl at Stitches. :)

Thursday, January 1, 2015

New Year

2015 has rolled in and I remembered to write about it! Last year's blogging effort was a fail. I didn't do well journaling my days. I realize once again that I'm not a good journal keeper.

Four months have flown by since my last post. This school year has sped by and in a lot of ways I'm glad. I really enjoy my eighth grade classes. The others, not so much! But I'm determined it will be a good year.

Knitting is going well. I've spent Christmas break finishing WIPs before I allow myself to start on new projects with my Christmas gifts. Quilting has stopped while my machine is in the shop. It is ready to be picked up and I plan on making a few project bags as soon as my machine returns.

The pets are good although Asher gave me a scare during mid terms. He ate 20 inches of elastic ribbon and the result was extreme vomiting, dehydration and kidney failure. Thankfully, we have a fabulous vet who got him rehydrated which stopped the kidney failure. He passed the ribbon the evening he came home. It took almost a week before he got his bounce back. Still shaking my head over the entire situation.

I leave this post with a few pictures of projects and pets.
Stitch Markers
Fingerless Mittens
Baby Hat for Jaxon
Project Bags
Socks with a slightly bent needle, don't know how that happened.
Multnomah Shawl
One IV owie
Sister's Christmas Tree shirt
PomPom Hat minus the pompom to match my mittens
Lovely scarf that almost doubled when I blocked it!