The Outer Limits (of my mind)

I don’t know about you, friends, but I feel stretched to my limits. I am no longer capable of further complexity in my life. I made a silly mistake on my Farmhouse Cardigan and had to rip it out. I began some Wide Legged Pants only to be confounded by taping the pattern pieces together. It is important during these troubled times to recognize your limits, be gentle with yourself, and reach for what comforts you.

I decided patterns are a no go right now (although I wouldn’t turn down an oatmeal raisin cookie) and cast on a simple cowl. This is Knitpicks Swish Bulky in Saffron from my stash. It was a FibreShare gift. Sweet simple hygge bliss. I will make a hat to match! (And call him George and hug him and pet him…)

Why do we have a large hunk of quartz in our house? I think it was here when we moved in. Maybe it was meant to be a doorstop? It has migrated to the living room.

If you’ve watched a lot of Time Team, as I have, you will remember they find early medieval church altars made from quartz. Was this because it was believed to hold special properties? Was it because it was readily available and shiny? Did it raise the spiritual energy of the congregation? Do you believe quartz holds special metaphysical properties? I think I do believe it, as do many people of different cultural backgrounds. So what is the significance of this chunk of quartz in our house? Is it clearing out bad vibes?

Ooommmmm. I know you probably can’t tell what I’m doing, but it’s a face plant on quartz. There are definitely some weird things afoot at my house, and not just yours truly needing a mental clearing.

What’s bending our forks? Poltergeist?Misdirected quartz vibrations? Teenagers eating ice cream? (Or… aliens?)

I stopped by my LYS to show my support in these times of economic uncertainty. (It had nothing to do with me needing yarn therapy I assure you.) I did my patriotic duty and picked up the knitting game I’ve wanted since Christmas, plus yarn to match for good measure. It’s such a happy blue. Maybe another simple cowl and hat is in my future. At least there is some certainty to be found in knitting.

Crafting FOMO

Well, my weekend has been a bust. After spending half a day at the craft con on Friday, I started feeling down. I came home for lunch and fell asleep on the couch, which is unusual for me to do during the day. By the time I woke up, it was too late to head back for the keynote, which I really wanted to hear.

Then yesterday I felt like I was getting sick so I stayed home and did some more sleeping on the couch, interspersed with knitting. I felt bad for missing the con and even worse for missing Sarah‘s virtual knit night, another thing I wanted to do. I have crafting FOMO! But I slept for 12 hours last night, so hopefully I’m on the mend. I’ll take it easy today and stay home so I don’t spread any germs.

I cast on my Farmhouse Cardigan. I also started a cowl with my Celtic Colours yarn, which I have been saving for something special. I decided it would be perfect for Whit’s Four Square Cowl with a second color. So I ripped it out and ordered another skein of the yarn in solid purple.

Today I’m going to order some prefelt for the art show. It’s only 19 months away!

It Feels Like Spring!

winter aconite along the ravine

I went for a walk in the neighborhood this morning. The winter aconite and snowdrops are blooming. It feels too early!

My trip to Kenya was a profound experience and I am so grateful to have been able to go, visit with artisans, and see what fair trade looks like in action. I’m really excited for our plans!

It took several days for me to recover from the jet lag. I did not get sick, but I need a lot of sleep. My anxiety has also been out of control. I heard an article on NPR about menopause and anxiety. It put some things into perspective for me.

I have not knit anything since Kenya. I haven’t sewn anything either. February is finish it, frog it, or forget about it month, and there are a few projects I foresee will be frogged. I really want to start my Farmhouse Cardigan, so I’ll probably go ahead and do that.

I’m hoping to get my February The Just Craft published by the end of the month. (I have an extra day because it’s a Leap Year!) I will focus on Kitengala Hot Glass and save Kenana Knitters for next month.

This weekend I will be attending Midwest Craft Con for the first time. I’m looking forward to learning some new things and meeting new people, but grateful nothing is really expected of me except to show up.

I can’t wait to catch up on your blogs! You’ll forgive me if I’m heavy on the liking and light on the commenting. Do you do anything special for Leap Day on February 29? It seems like it should be a holiday of sorts.

The Red Road Home

Have I ever blogged about my Grandparents’ farm? I can’t imagine I haven’t. I think about it, and them, every day. Even in Kenya, I look at the red soil and rolling hills and think of Oklahoma.

My cousin Cyndi and her husband are restoring the farm in the hopes of retiring there someday. She’s started a facebook page so we can follow along!

Sundee

This is my Sunday: knitting, reading, cozy cat on quilt, and hemming some pants. I may stay in my PJs all day.

Yesterday I sewed a bag for Liz (part of her giveaway prize) based on this bag sewn for me by Sarah. I am thinking of it as friendship bread, the sewing version.

The Juki machines are nice. I am enjoying my sewing again. I still have a lot to learn about them.

I started my Hogsmeade Cowl. I really wanted to make a linen stitch cowl but didn’t have enough for Jessica Jones. I realized I had the power. I knit a swatch in linen stitch. I did math. I cast on. This will be my Kenya knitting. I will knit until I’m almost out of yarn, and then I’ll bind off.

In the upper left of the photo above, you will see a book by The Alchemist. I am savoring it, especially the photos of the gorgeous vases and the intro to Raku at the beginning. I will learn more next week as I have an interview with the artist for The Just Craft. One day I will buy a vase. I have my eye on Jovian Moon. Although A Horse with No Name and Apollo’s Song have also taken my fancy. Housewarming gift for myself? I have to buy a house first. Priorities!

I received some very nice hand-me-down clothing from friends for my household, and the boys are taking their picks. I have also claimed three pair of trousers for myself. I think I prefer men’s trousers. They are loose and comfy and high waisted for people with no waist. That’s me! Maybe I’ll start tucking in my shirts again.

I hope you have a wonderful Sunday. My main goal today is to not think about work so I can be fresh for tomorrow’s challenges!

My Brain Hurts

I am planning to take today off and spend some time in my craft corner with my new sewing machine and serger. I would also like to start my fourth Tread hat for Hans.

Work has been so busy that my brain has been on duty every moment of the day, it seems. For this reason, and in honor of Terry Jones who has shuffled off his mortal coil, I have named this post “My Brain Hurts.”

Do you try to catch snow sparkles with your camera? This is the best I could do. These photos were taken while I was in Wisconsin.

I hope we get some snow this winter!

I’m Obsessed

A friend shared these videos with me on Facebook. I am casting them to my TV and watching them on repeat.

I have no desire to make something like this myself. But I am enjoying the magic.

Twilight Toujours is slowly getting finished. We are in transition crunch time at work, which is stressful, but it will be so good when it’s done. I may not get out of my PJs this weekend, though.

I found my coat pattern!

yates coat

(photo credit Grainline Studio)

This is the Yates Coat. It is appropriate for my wool fabric, and it looks like it will be a good choice for my first coat. Not easy, but easy for a coat.

Sarah is making an Oxbow Cardigan this year and wants me to sign on for a Thanksgiving knitalong again. I’m game, even though it’s not on my list (yet)!

I want to make a black cardigan. My wardrobe needs this. I want to choose yarn from an heirloom breed. I found some Black Welsh Mountain yarn and the farm is participating in Shave’Em to Save’Em. I calculated my totals for the Oxbow Cardigan. $450! (insert flabbergasted emoji here)

I know the yarn is worth it, and we need to support our farmers and heirloom breeds. But I simply feel like I cannot afford that. I mean, I’m holding off on buying a new serger and a better sewing machine. That cardigan yarn would be 2/3 of the way to a new machine.

So, I’m going to hold off on any black bulky yarn purchasing for now, but with the full intention of adding Oxbow Cardigan to my list this year.

And maybe if I am very very very good and do not spend any of my crafting allowance on other things and save it up, I could buy the yarn I really want? That’s still a lot of fed mouths. But it could be a sweater that lasts the rest of my life, so maybe a good investment? And I would feel good about the yarn I purchased. I will have a long think on it.

Check out my beautiful son wearing the hat I made him (which makes me happy) but giving me snark.

img_7447

Gotta go. He is introducing me to 8 out of 10 Cats Does Countdown.

Quiz Deux

Here’s another quiz from Karen via Hannah! Why not?!

1. Are you named after somebody?

I’m named after my Mother. Her name is Alethea, but mine is Alissa. It’s pronounced Alisa. I think I’m going to start spelling it the Finnish way, Aliissa. That way everyone will know how to pronounce it.

2. When is the last time you cried?

Today. I’ve decided to get off medication so right now everything is making me cry.

3. Do you like your handwriting?

No. It’s a mess. Maybe I should slow down and write more mindfully.

4. What is your favorite lunch meat?

Egg salad

5. Do you have kids?

Yes!

6. Farthest place you have traveled?

France

7. Do you use sarcasm?

See question number 1

8. Do you still have your tonsils?

Nope

9. Would you bungee jump?

Hell no

10. What is your favorite cereal?

Mesa Sunrise

11. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off?

If required

12. Do you think you’re strong?

Emotionally I am. It doesn’t always feel that way, but this life has thrown a lot at me and I still manage to show up everyday. I’m not that interested in being physically strong. This may change if we start a sheep farm.

13. What is your favorite ice cream?

Honestly, I’d rather have a cupcake. Anyway, I can’t eat ice cream. I am casein intolerant, yet surprisingly fine with lactose.

14. What is the first thing you notice about a person?

Eyes

15. Football or Baseball?

No

16. What is the least favorite thing you like about yourself?

My sense of humor. I amuse myself.

17. What colour pants are you wearing?

Navy sweats

18. What was the last thing you ate?

A piece of salted caramel chocolate

19. What are you listening to right now?

The soft rumbling of the furnace accompanied by the shrill shooshing of the toilet refilling.

20. If you were a crayon, what color would you be?

Cerulean

21. Favorite flavour?

Rosemary

22. Who was the last person you spoke to on the phone?

My friend Iderah

23. Favourite sport to watch?

Bob trying to keep all the Tupperware from falling out of the cupboard

24. Hair colour?

Silverrrr

25. Eye color?

Sort of golden brown with a ring of olive green (BROWN)

27. Favorite food?

Any form of potato

28. Scary movies or happy endings?

Scary movies, of course

29. Last movie you watched without falling asleep?

Little Monsters. Really adorable zombie movie. I highly recommend. “One two three! Eyes on me!”

New Year’s Quiz

Yay, a New Year’s Quiz from Karen!

How will you spend the last night of 2019? Will you party all night? Will you go to bed early?

I will knit on the couch while watching TV and then go to bed early. I wish I lived near Karen. We could do that together!

Do you have any little superstitions about ringing in the new year?

Black eyed peas must be on the menu New Year’s Day.

Do you have craft plans for 2020? Are you hoping to try new things or improve your current set of skills?

I’m hoping to set up a new craft area in my house since I have moved out of my studio. I’m also hoping to primarily knit and sew from stash.

Do you have resolutions for 2020? If so what are they? If not do you have a word or goal for the new year?

Both. I will journal every morning, a practice I’ve already started. I think my word for 2020 will be “mindful”, as in mindful exercise (walking, yoga,) mindful eating, mindful planning of my day. Being mindful is a great way to slow down and savor life, as well as take care of yourself and act in accordance with your core values. At least, that’s what I’m hoping will happen. 😆

I’m almost finished with Twilight Toujours. I can’t wait wait to post a pic!