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!

A Holiday Gift Quiz

I seem to be all about the quizzes these days. Karen posted another one!

For these questions money, storage space and time is no object. My answers below.

List 3 things you would like to receive as a gift. Go all out for at least one of them.

I would love a new bird feeder pole that allows me to hang multiple feeders. My set up right now is not ideal, although I love seeing the birdies outside my office window.

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2. I’m in love with this jacket from Studio Donegal.

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It is crazy expensive, but totally worth it as it is hand woven from Ireland. I think this is going to be one of those things I’ll just dream about the rest of my life. If someone gave it to me, I would probably feel too guilty to wear it. I mean, that’s a lot of fed mouths for a jacket I don’t need. Maybe someday the Universe will conspire to put a used one in my path? This ranks up there with the Manitobah Mukluks I would love to have, but really don’t need and can’t afford.

3. I would like a new sewing machine. Mine is fine and basic, but I would like an upgrade so I can sew jeans, jackets, and bags. I would also like a serger.

List 3 gifts you’d like to give. You don’t have to mention who it’s for.

I would love to give Bob a real MacLean wool tartan kilt, either purchased or handmade. I doubt he would wear it, though. He would probably think it is itchy as it has to be wool to be authentic.

I would like to give JoJo a Corgi puppy as a sibling. I’m not sure she would appreciate it, though.

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I would like to give cars to all our kids. Some of them have cars, but they don’t run very well. I think my oldest is the only one with a reliable vehicle, but he wants to travel, so I think he needs something a little bigger.

List 3 food gifts you’d like to give or receive.

Since I can no longer eat pecans, I would love a divinity roll but with pumpkin and sunflower seeds on the outside.

I would love to try a real Christmas pudding, just once. With the holly stuck in it and everything!

I would like to donate some food this year. We volunteer at a local center, and I would like to put together a collection of nice foods for the holidays to donate. Totally doable.

Feel free to answer in the comments or leave a link if you’ll be answering on your blog.

Black Friday Quiz

Karen at nothingbutknit2 posted a Black Friday quiz. You know I can’t resist a quiz.

1. Do you shop the sales on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and/or Cyber Monday? What is your favorite way to shop?

I do not shop on Black Friday. I’m not someone who looks for deals. I prefer to shop my values, which means paying a fair price for a quality item. I like the idea of shopping the day after Thanksgiving with family and friends to enjoy the season, but I’ve learned it is not enjoyable on that day. I may try to do a little shopping on Small Business Saturday to support our local businesses, although I try to do that year round. I do shop online but if it is related to a deal like Cyber Monday it is an afterthought so any discount is a bonus. My favorite way to shop is at our local small businesses. I enjoy browsing as long as it isn’t overly busy with people.

2. Have you started your gift shopping/crafting?

Yes, we are nearly done with our shopping as our children are mostly grown and we are still helping some of them get on their feet financially. We are also saving to buy a home. So this year we’re only filling stockings. My Christmas gift crafting is modest this year and I have started but not finished.

3. Are you one of those people who has all your gifts wrapped and ready to go early? Are you a last minute shopper and final moments crafter?

I am someone who has most of it done early. I am still looking for those final special items up to the last minute, though. I’m a thoughtful gifter and I like to take my time with it.

4. Do you have a tale from shopping trips past that you wish to share?

One year when we were terribly poor, I followed the conventional wisdom that I needed to go out and get items at a discount early on Black Friday. I needed to get coats and a couple of special toys for my (then little) boys. I was out at the crack of dawn and waited in line for hours to pay. It was a horrible experience and I realized the deals weren’t any better than on a regular shopping day. I’ve never shopped on Black Friday since then, except once when I nearly had an altercation in a mall parking lot over a parking space. Another reason to just say no to Black Friday.

I’m not a Black Friday hater, though. People should shop the way they like, although I saw this image on Instagram today and want to share it here.

I don’t want to act like I’ve got it all figured out. Shopping is something I struggle with as it is a way I nurture myself. You can see the problem there. So I am working toward saving more and spending less and being happy with the experience of shopping without necessarily buying something. This is tough when you work in retail! When I shop for myself I like to buy used when I can, and for new items I try to buy fair trade and/or handmade.

At work this weekend we have a coupon going out, but mainly we’re focusing on rounding up to help our artisan partners in Kenya buy a new kiln. We have a Small Business Saturday promotion with a tote bag giveaway in stores, and we’ll offer a Cyber Monday discount via email. This is a way to have some fun and reward our best customers. We’ll ask for donations for Giving Tuesday. As a small nonprofit, and as a fair trade organization, we can’t afford to offer deep discounts. Anyway, most of those deep discounts out there are just a discount off a steep markup. We don’t do that.

Before the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade the Today Show highlighted alpaca blend throws originally $350 going for $79 for Black Friday. At our store, alpaca blend throws are always around $79, often less.

So shop small this season, my friends. Shop fair trade if you can. Go to your local craft shows. Check out your local small businesses. If you have a small budget, make it count with a few good items.

I know when kids are little they have big expectations at Christmas time. I’m not suggesting you should make decisions that interfere with their happiness. I’m not sure where Legos are made, but I know there is probably a small mountain of Legos in a landfill somewhere because of us. No judgments.

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” — Maya Angelou

I’m still working on the doing better part!

Another Quiz!

50 questions! Will it ever end?

1. What is the color of your toothbrush?

I have two at the moment. I’m not sure how that happened. One is pink and black and white, the other is orange and black and white.

2. Name someone who made you smile?

JoJo makes me smile in the morning as she rolls around on the kitchen floor making cute kitty noises as if getting fed depends upon her being cute.

3. What were you doing at 8 am this morning?

8am is still yet to come!

4. What were you doing 45 minutes ago?

feeding JoJo

5. What is your favorite candy bar?

River-Sea Chocolate Rum Caramel

6. Ever been to a strip club?

I think I went to a Chippendales (male strip club) for a Hen/Bachelorette party once. I don’t see the appeal. I think it’s a combination of humorous and embarrassing.

7. What is the last thing you said out loud?

Some garbled stream of laughing and nonsense as I was looking at Animals Being Derps on Reddit. “Oh heeheehee look at this kitty hahaha it doesn’t share its food hehehohoho.” But seriously, look at this kitty.

8. What is your favorite ice cream?

I can’t eat real ice cream, tragically, so So Delicious Soy Vanilla.

9. What was the last thing you had to drink?

Coffee with eggnog

10. Do you like your wallet?

I love my wallet! It’s a little big, but I carry it as a clutch sometimes, so it’s all good.

11. What was the last thing you ate?

Gluten free peppermint JoJos from Trader Joe’s

12. Did you buy any new clothes this weekend?

Yes, I went to the thrift store. I bought some new (to me anyway) flannel PJ pants (LLBean!) a cotton sweater, a couple of long sleeved cotton tops, a wool skirt (JCrew!) and — the score — a pair of Harve Bernard wool flannel pleated pin striped trousers that still had the tags on them that looked like they had been hanging in someone’s closet since the 1980’s. They were exactly what I wanted. Thank you, Universe!

13. The last sporting event you watched?

I do not sportsball

14. What is your favorite flavor of popcorn?

Bob’s garlic and herb. By Bob I mean my Bob. He makes the most amazing popcorn with nutritional yeast in the seasoning.

15. Who is the last person you sent a text message to?

Board Treasurer. For work.

16. Ever go camping? Oh yes. I love fall and spring camping.

17. Do you take vitamins daily?

Yes

18. Do you go to church every Sunday?

No

19. Do you have a tan?

Not at the moment

20. Do you prefer Chinese food over pizza?

No, I pretty much will always choose pizza.

21. Do you drink your soda with a straw?

I do not soda. I do not straw unless it is my metal reusable ones. Save the sea turtles!

22. What did your last text say?

It was a link to a spreadsheet. Man, I am boring!

23. What are you doing tomorrow?

Driving to Indianapolis for a Board Meeting.

24. What terrifies you?

Insanity. Abandonment.

25. Look to your left, what do you see?

A wool blanket from Lesotho that my stepdaughter gave us.

26. What color is your watch?

I do still have a watch, even though I don’t wear it. The band is hand tooled leather. I love it, but watches are now obsolete if you have a phone.

27. What do you think of when you hear Australia?

Throw another shrimp on the barbie. Do you come from the land down under? If you leave me, can I come too? Crocodile Dundee. Kangaroo Jack.

28. Favorite Soda?

I do not soda, but if I must, ginger ale.

29. Do you go in a fast food place or just hit the drive thru?

I do not fast food.

30. What is your favorite number?

14

31. Who’s the last person you talked to on the phone?

Board Chair. Work work work work work.

32. Any plans today?

Yoga and Pilates. Work meeting. Work stuff. Volunteer. Go to bed.

33. How many states have you lived in?

5: Oklahoma, Texas, California, Virginia, and Ohio

34. Biggest annoyance right now?

The necessity of dieting and exercise

35. Last song listened to?

I’m not sure but it was on the Pumpkin Spice Latte Frame of Mind Google Play Channel, something hipster and hygge, which I was ironically enjoying

36. Can you say the alphabet backwards?

No but I will probably try now

37. Do you have a maid service when you clean house?

I wish.

38. Favorite type of shoes you always wear?

Dr Marten’s oxfords

39. Are you jealous of anyone?

I don’t think so

40. Is anyone jealous of you?

I doubt it

41. Do you love anyone?

Of course

42. Do any of your friends have children?

Most do

43. What do you usually do during the day?

Work, work, work, work, work, work, work, knit

44. Do you hate anyone that you know right now?

I do not hate

45. Do you use the word ‘hello’ daily?

Probably

46. What color is your car?

Basque Red. Yes, that’s the Honda name for the color. It was a selling point.

47. How many kids do you want?

I have 3 bio, 4 step. I think we’re good.

48. Are you thinking about someone right now?

Yes

49. Have you ever been to Six Flags?

Yes, I grew up going to Six Flags over Texas regularly.

50. How did you get your worst scar?

I have scars on both knees from a bicycle accident when I was a kid.

Thanks for posting this, Karen!

My Silly Knitting Quiz

1. Share an image of a knitting pattern you love but would probably never knit.

2. What is your favorite knitting technique?

3. Yarn: wool, alpaca, cotton, linen, hemp, silk, or acrylic?

4. Needles: wood, bamboo, metal, plastic, or casein?

5. Would you go on a knitting vacation? If yes, which country’s yarn shops would you like to visit?

6. Lace, fingering, sport, DK, worsted, or bulky? (If you had to choose just one)

7. Do you eat while knitting? If so, what?

8. Speckled yarn: yes or no?

9. Favorite knitting slang word?

10. Can you do anything else while knitting? Watching or listening to something doesn’t count.

11. Favorite knitting pattern designer?

12. Favorite yarn brand?

13. Intentional felting: yes or no?

14. Who taught you to knit?

15. What’s your next knit?

Here are my answers:

1. Share an image of a knitting pattern you love but would probably never knit.

Also there is a pattern for his long underwear.

2. What is your favorite knitting technique?

2-color stranded

3. Yarn: wool, alpaca, cotton, linen, hemp, silk, or acrylic?

Wool, of course

4. Needles: wood, bamboo, metal, plastic, or casein?

Wood when I can find them

5. Would you go on a knitting vacation? If yes, which country’s yarn shops would you like to visit?

Yes, please! Probably Shetland is my number 1 but I would also love to go on a Finnish knitting holiday, if there is one. Iceland would be on the short list as well, along with any Scandinavian country.

6. Lace, fingering, sport, DK, worsted, or bulky? (If you had to choose just one)

DK

7. Do you eat while knitting? If so, what?

Rarely because I don’t want to get food on my knitting, but occasionally chocolate

8. Speckled yarn: yes or no?

Hell no

9. Favorite knitting slang word?

Knitty Litter: The knitting related detritus that collects all over the home when one knits (I tend to scatter much knitty litter when I’m deep into a project)

10. Can you do anything else while knitting? Watching or listening to something doesn’t count.

For some time I have been on a mission to learn to read a real book while knitting, but I am not coordinated enough, apparently. I would also like to knit while walking, but same problem. I think someone should teach a knitting yoga class. There’s cat yoga, and even goat yoga. There should be knitting yoga!

11. Favorite knitting pattern designer?

It’s still Kate Davies. There is something about her simple precision and elegance that appeals to me, with just a little quirky fun.

12. Favorite yarn brand?

I have to say, Scout by Kelbourne Woolens is becoming my favorite yarn. But Peace Fleece will probably always be my favorite brand because of their mission. I would love a sweater quantity of Peace Fleece yarn for Christmas.

13. Intentional felting: yes or no?

Slippers yes, but anything else, no. I like drape.

14. Who taught you to knit?

A friend but it didn’t “take” so I took a class a couple of years later. I’m mostly self-taught

15. What’s your next knit?

These slippers for myself in raspberry red

Please answer on your blog, and let us know in the comments if you’re playing along!

Everyone Is Doing It

It was an up in the middle of the night kind of night last night, so I filled out this quiz all my blog friends are doing.

40 odd things about me . . . join in with a comment or a post on your blog.

1. Do you like mustard? Mustard is my condiment of choice.
2. Choice of carbonated beverage? Brew Dr. kombucha in Love or Happiness
3. Ever traveled to another country? Yes, England, France, Mexico, Canada
4. Whiskey, Tequila, Vodka? Only tequila in Margaritas
5. Hot dogs or Cheeseburgers? Cheeseburgers
6. Favorite Type Of food: it used to be pizza, but now it is tacos
7. Do you believe in ghosts? Yes
8. What do you drink in the mornings? Coffee with oat milk
9. Can you do a 100 pushups? Doubtful
10. Summer, Winter, Spring, Or Fall? Fall
11. Favorite hobby? Knitting.
12. Tattoos? Yes, two
13. Do you wear glasses? Yes
14. Phobia? Heights, drowning, cockroaches
15. Nickname? I think I outgrew all my nicknames, except for mom and motherrr
16. Three drinks you drink?  Water, coffee, herbal tea
17. Biggest Downfall? Gluten free peppermint JoJos from Trader Joe’s
18. Rain or Snow? Snow
19. Piercings? Two in left ear, one in right ear, one in left nostril
20. Age? 52
21. Taken or Single? Married
22. How long taken or single? married 7 years
23. Kids? 7 altogether
24. Favorite color? It’s green right now
25. Employed? Yes
26. Can you whistle? Yes
27. Where were you born? Oklahoma City
28. Brothers or Sisters? 1 sister
29. Ninjas or Pirates? I think ninjas are funnier for some reason
30. Surgeries? Gallbladder and Wisdom Teeth removal
31. Religious? It depends on how you define it. I’m spiritual. I have faith and beliefs.
32. Shower or Bath? Shower
33. Like gambling? No
34. Are You Loyal? Yes
35. Broken bones? Foot
36. How many tv’s in your house? 1
37. Worst pain ever? Gallbladder attack
38. Do you like to dance? I love to dance!
39. Are your parents still alive? My mom is
40. Do you like camping? Yes as long as my comfort needs are met. I do not want to be cold or hot, and I can’t sleep if I can feel tree roots or rocks in my back. Gee, I’m a fussy camper!

Now there’s a 50 question quiz going around! Give me time.

My Weekender is blocking!

A Quiz! And Felting Blues

Here’s a quiz from Karen at nothingbutknit.

1. What was the last food you ate? SunRype Chocolate Chip Bites

2. Do you sleep with socks on? If I’m cold, but usually not.

3. Worst physical pain you’ve had? Gallbladder attacks

4. Favourite place you have ever been? Cape Breton, Nova Scotia

5. How late did you stay up last night? I went to bed at 8:15 and I was snoozing on the couch before that. I’m a little under the weather.

6. If you could move somewhere else, where would it be? Cape Breton, Nova Scotia

7. What is your favourite sport? I don’t have one but I would like to cultivate an appreciation for a sport and a fandom for a team. Maybe curling.

8. When was the last time you cried? It’s been a few months.

9. Who took your profile pic? I did.

10. Two of your favourite movies? There are so many good movies, it’s hard to choose. Auntie Mame is one of my all time favorites, as well as Nosferatu by Werner Herzog.

11. What’s your favourite season? Autumn

12. If you could have any career what would it be? I love my career but one thing more I would like to do in my lifetime is knitting pattern designer.

13. What was the last book you read? It Was a Dark and Stormy Knit.

14. If you could talk to ANYONE right now who would it be? My Dad

15. Are you a good influence on other people? I think so. I try to encourage people to accept themselves as they are and also inspire them to be the best they can be. That’s good, right?

16. Does pineapple belong on a pizza? If there is ham, then yes.

17. You have the remote, what show is on? I just finished The Bay on BritBox, and just started watching Blandings. Hilarious.

18. Last text message: Catchy

19. What’s the last concert you’ve been to? SaltfishForty

20. Favorite food: The Universe has conspired against me enjoying my favorite food of all time which is cheese.

21. Favorite album all-time? Josephine Foster and the Supposed “All the Leaves are Gone”. When I think about listening to it I imagine the scene in Mars Attacks! when the aliens’ brains quiver and explode to Slim Whitman music, only it’s my brain and it feels good.

22. Favorite day of the week? Saturday

23. Have you ever drank alcohol? Yes, I like good wine with food, hard cider, mead, and beer (although I can only have gluten free beer). Also, it’s “drunk”. Also I try not to drink very often because it’s a depressant. See number 25 below.

24. Did you go to college? Yes. I worked my way through college and it took me nine years to get my bachelors degree. I’m proud of that.

25. Have you ever experienced depression? Yes, it started with post partum depression after my second child and has continued as clinical depression and generalized anxiety disorder. Yes, I take medication and have accepted that in order to fulfill my potential for a life well lived I will probably have to stay on medication the rest of my life. And I’m ok with it.

Please join in. The more the merrier. Feel free to answer in the comments or leave a link if you’re posting it on your blog so we can read your answers.

My Blue Ribbon Beanie got a little stretched out on my trip. I thought, “I know! I’ll put it in a lingerie bag and wash it on cold WITH A LOAD OF JEANS and then reblock it!” It felted right up! Of course. The good news is it still fits. The bad news is it has lost its jauntiness.

Before I took my expensive wool knit fabric to the studio to sew my Ace, I thought I should probably wash it which led to me thinking, “I know! I’ll put it in a lingerie bag and wash it on cold WITH A LOAD OF JEANS and hang it up to dry!” And yes, it felted. I don’t know if I have enough to make Ace now.

I think I have finally learned my lesson.

PS: Happy Halloween! I accidentally turned my comments off for this post, but they are back on again, in case you want to leave one.

All Words Sunday and a Quiz

We have a Peregrine Falcon who has moved into our neighborhood. She calls and screams after crows. Peregrines were introduced here for repopulation after they almost went extinct. She must be young because she looks a little small to me. She might be a he. I tend to think of falcons as female.

We used to have Barred Owls, but I haven’t heard them this year. We also have foxes and many, many deer. It’s weird living in the city with deer grazing in your front yard.

Yesterday Bob and I went to the thrift store for some new-to-him cotton flannel shirts. Then we went to see “It: Chapter 2” and out to Eden Burger for dinner. “It” was good. Scary and fun.

Eden Burger is a vegan burger joint, and they have some gluten free options. I ordered loaded fries and avoided the bun altogether. I think it’s funny how we try to eat organic and vegan, but end up eating organic and vegan versions of junk food. Still, I’m not one to be happy with salad for every meal.

I am hoping to spend some time at the studio today, although I’m developing a phobia about going there. I don’t understand why. This is a great segue into a quiz posted by compassionknit:

Q. Do you think of yourself as a worrier or as risk averse? 

A. As I have aged, I have become more risk averse. I worry more now. I have more to worry about. More responsibility.

Q. Do others call you a worry wart?

A. No, I don’t think anyone has called me that. But I was curious where this term originated and I found this:

“Wart” has been a colloquialism for someone obnoxious or objectionable since at least the late 19th century.”

I had no idea!

Q. Do you consider yourself brave in any particular circumstance?

A. I’m brave at work although I also worry about work. In business you have to be prepared to take calculated risks.

I have been brave (or stupid, depending on your perspective) most of my life. But age is tempering me and of course I have had my fair share of trauma, which makes me more cautious than I used to be.

Q. Do you fear: a)running out of yarn that is no longer available b)giving a gift and hearing it unraveled or c)having to confess how large your stash is?

A. A) Yes, I fear running out of yarn for a project. I try to buy an extra skein if I can.

B) No, I don’t worry about my hand knitting unraveling. Although, it has once or twice.

C) I don’t have much of a stash, so I don’t fear this question.

Q. Are you afraid of air travel? 

A. No, I love air travel. But I do have those momentary panics when there is turbulence.

Q. Do you fear a hand injury ? 

A. Hmm. I’ve never really thought about it. I guess that’s a no then.

Q. This one is quite personal, feel free to skip it: Did you ever fear you were pregnant? 

A. No. If I were pregnant, I would embrace it. But I had pleasant pregnancies and hard, though normal, labor and births. Back labor is not fun, but not dangerous either.

Q. Were you afraid of a something as a child?  (the dark, etc) 

A. Oh my. Can I skip this one? When I was a child, I was scared of demons.

Q. Do you fear having to get a shot? 

A. I don’t like shots or having my blood drawn. I take a deep breath and look away.

Q. Are you afraid of sharks, jellyfish or coral in the ocean? 

A. No, but I’m a little afraid of the ocean. When I lived in San Diego my surfer boyfriend took me way out in the Pacific (where the waves break), and I thought I was going to drown. I did make it back to shore myself, with him coaching me. That instilled a fear of drowning and a healthy respect for the ocean. I still love the water and will swim and body surf when I get the chance. But I’m cautious. I don’t go beyond what I perceive as my limit.

So why am I resisting going to my studio? Has anything bad happened there? No. Just not having enough fabric for a project. Am I afraid to be alone? I don’t think so. I think I ruined it when I turned it into my office temporarily. It feels like going to work.

Well, there’s nothing for it. I’ve just got to go and have fun. Maybe I need to rechristen it with a good day of crafting!

It’s Good to Have Goals

When I decided to lease a studio space for the coming new year, I made a commitment to myself to set creative goals. One of those goals is to start designing knitting patterns again.

Although I never had much success selling my patterns or kits, I did have some success in making, showing, and selling my designs and artwork, and in teaching sewing, knitting, and felting classes. At the time, it was my way of trying to build a career for myself in the arts while also staying at home raising our young children.

Life happened while I was busy making other plans. I needed to earn an income – fast – and I started over, building another career in business. I am grateful and I feel fortunate to have been able to support myself and my kids, and wholeheartedly love my work in fair trade. I recognize how lucky I am to be able to earn a living wage while helping others do the same with handmade goods.

One of the boundaries to creating my own knitting patterns is the plethora of patterns out there. If I want to knit something, all I have to do is search for it on Ravelry, and there is usually something that fits the bill. This year, however, I’m not going to do that. My challenge to myself is to sketch what I want to make, take the measurements, swatch, do the math, and knit it (if I still want to make it.)

It doesn’t mean I’m not going to knit other designers’ patterns. I have a whole list of knits I want to make that will last me well into next year, and I’m sure there will be more! But when there is something that I am envisioning, I am challenging myself to create my own pattern for it.

I’m also setting goals to sketch one design per week, and create a pattern draft for one design per month. That doesn’t mean I have to knit it. But I do hope to knit at least four of my own patterns next year. I will also make patterns available for free to people who would like to test knit them for me.

In order to meet these goals, I am dedicating 8 hours each week to studio time: 3 hours on Wednesday evenings, and 5 hours on Sundays. This is a lot on top of a 40 hour work week, family time, Haven Herbs time (5-10 hours per week), gym time (1 hour per week,) hiking, phew! There’s so much I want to do! Luckily I’m one of those people who wakes up at 5AM and is finished with half my work before breakfast!

I also still need to fit in art making time at my studio, as I need to create work for another group show taking place in July 2019. I have old artwork on display in my studio, and another fear I have is of going down the artmaking road more than the design road. So I’ve got to be sure to balance these things if I really want to create my own designs.

Wow, thanks for reading all of that if you are still with me. Here’s your reward, some photos!

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Here’s me being impatient to try on my Carbeth sleeve. I’m ready to start sleeve number 2.

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Here’s my favorite 10 year old being creative with glitter. I love how scientific her approach is to creativity.

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Here’s my Christmas gift to Bob. He’s lived in the US so long, he does not have a passport. If he leaves the country, he can’t return. So I put together a little kit of (almost) everything he needs for his Canadian passport. The only thing I didn’t do is fill out the form for him. We are hoping to travel to Nova Scotia in October to visit his family.

Here’s a Q&A for you, my first! You can answer questions in the comments or post them to your blog. If you post them, please leave a comment so we can go read them!

  1. Do you set New Year’s Goals or Resolutions for yourself?
  2. Do you have any creative goals for the new year?
  3.  Some people like to set a goal for a certain number of things to make for the year. For example: 18 in 18. Do you do this? If so, what is the number? How do you decide the number of things to make?
  4. Do you have blogging goals for the new year? If so, what are they?
  5. What is your favorite thing you’ve made in 2018? Post a pic!

Now I have to answer my own questions.

  1. Yes, I do.
  2.  Yes, I listed them above.
  3.  I did create a number of designs I want to create in the new year. I came up with the number by trying to decide what was realistic, but still challenging, based on the time I am setting aside.
  4. My blogging goal for 2019 is to blog two times per week, although I hope to blog more.
  5. My favorite thing I’ve made in 2018 is my Birds of Blendon Hat!

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